Hello all. I know I said it once. Then I said it again. I really thought the gas pedal was going to be hammered to the floor with last week's episode, "What Happened, Happened," and the season was going to take off. Again, we got a nice episode, with some interesting things, but still moving at a relatively slow pace. These last three episodes ("Namaste," "He's Our You" and now "What Happened, Happened") are still infinitely better than most of Season 2, but still, I was a little disappointed. My thoughts:
*Overall, Evangeline Lilly was incredible in this episode. As I have mentioned in the last couple episodes, the acting has been fantastic (Sawyer, Sayid, Jack, Juliet, etc.), it's just the pace of the stories that has been a little lacking. Regardless, Evangeline was utterly fantastic. Some of the best work she's done on the series, and certainly better than this.
*Kind of figured that Sawyer had asked Kate to find Clementine in the Season 4 finale. Was surprised she told Cassidy the truth about Oceanic 815. And was more surprised that Cassidy didn't tell the authorities, leading to Aaron being taken away from Kate. Once we realized Cassidy wasn't running to the cops (or the closest TV camera), I figured Kate was going to leave Aaron with Cassidy. Not the case either. Then I thought Aaron was really going to have been taken in the grocery store. Not so. As we now know, Aaron ended up with his grandmother, Claire's mom. Kudos to the writers for completely misdirecting me with that story line.
*Kate went back to the Island to look for Claire? Bizarre. Especially since, other than Kate helping to birth Aaron (admittedly, that's a pretty big deal), I don't really remember Kate and Claire interacting that much. I mean, I get that Kate, but the time she goes back to the Island, has realized that she won't be able to effectively raise Aaron as her own, but it just kind of rang weird to me. Could Kate's motherly instinct really have kicked into overdrive in her three years with Aaron? I guess so.
*There's some discussion that after Kate left Aaron with Ms. Littleton, and she went to Jack's place in "316," she had her makeout session with Jack with the intention of getting pregnant. In theory, Kate would want to conceive before going back to the Island, so as to not DIE on the Island. The theory continues that because of this, Kate has screwed up baby-having on the Island in the first place. Color me unconvinced. I think it is more likely Kate was so distraught at having left Aaron, and facing going back to somewhere she never wanted to return, that she fell in the arms of the man she truly does love. She had also just been told by Cassidy that Sawyer essentially ditched her, so the love triangle had been broken. I am, however, open to persuasion on this point.
*I knew it! There was no way Little Ben was going to die. I can go along with the idea that Ben's memory was going to be erased in the Temple with whatever juju Richard (and Smokey?) was going to do to him. That leaves one question for me then: How did older Ben know all the Dharma folks, including his father, that he was going to gas in The Purge? Wouldn't the people in Dharmaville wonder where Ben was if he was gone for any amount of time, being that he was bleeding on an operating table? What will Little Ben's disappearance mean for the Lostaways who stole him away into the woods?
*As Back to the Future is, quite literally, my favorite movie of all time, I loved Hurley waiting for his hand to disappear a la Marty McFly. The whole meeting of the minds about time travel and what is and is not possible was great. To me, this was a chance for the writers/producers to recognize that the audience (most often voiced by the character of Hurley) is having the same questions and debates by this point. As well, I think they were saying, "Stick with us. It will all become clear." We did learn one pertinent fact though: the Lostaways can die, permanently, in 1977. As I learned as a theater major, you never introduce a prop on stage that isn't going to be used. Methinks time is short for one of our regulars (no pun intended).
*Eh...new Jack v. old Jack. Thought it was kind of cool he was willing to let Little Ben die. This was clearly new Jack (so much for the Hippocratic Oath) because there is no way the "savior" of old would have let anyone die (hell, he already saved Ben once, albeit due to his desire to save Kate). He was willing to chop off Boone's leg for God's sake! I do miss Jack and his daring-do though. I think the series will not be complete until we see the redemption of Jack Shephard, and I don't think that can happen until he takes control of his life. Obviously, we have a while to go (well, about 22 more hours to go), so hopefully we will see the return of Jack-on-a-mission soon.
*Great closer from Locke, hovering over Ben, "Welcome to the land of the living." Ben looked genuinely shocked to see Locke alive and well. Very cool.
That's about all. Again, not an episode to write home about, but more solid acting performances. Don't forget to check out full recaps from Doc Jensen and Erika. I'll leave my preview of tomorrow night's episode, "Dead Is Dead" (oooh, ominous!) until tomorrow morning. But, all I can say is, BEN!