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Lost Thoughts: Happily Ever After
© Peggy Hailey and Mark Finn
April 10, 2010

Peggy Hailey and Mark Finn (in italics) try to wrap their fragile little minds around the latest episode of Lost.

Well, damn.

Des really IS a Very Special Snowflake, isn't he.

And really, show; an Updike reference? If you were going to go there, I'd expect The Witches of Eastwick, not Rabbit Angstrom.

With all of the Desmond-y goodness going on, I'm surprised I caught ANYTHING this week. Why is it that the Desmond episodes always seem to be a high water mark for the show? Oh yeah, because stuff happens in them. Boy Howdy, was this one fun.

So the alt-verse apparently isn't a what-if; it's the Matrix: a pretty little fiction to keep the natives quiet. How does this change the stories we've seen so far? And what's our new explanation for why some get happy endings and some don't? Sayid is easy. As much as he wants to be a good person, he doesn't see himself as worthy, so he doesn't get the grand prize.

But what about Ben? Or Hurley? I can see him imagining a better life without the bad luck of the numbers, but I can't see him imagining what we saw. And what about those who are dead in our 'verse? Is it really them in the alt-verse? If so, how can they not know what's going on? If not, what was the point of Locke's story?

All valid questions and concerns. I still think that the alt-verse we've been watching represents everyone's next path in life. Their upgrade, wherein some things are better, some things are still the same, but the crap that was reeeeally bugging them this time around is dealt with. Now, here's the thing: you know how Des is unstuck in time? I think that our world, our "current" timeline, is Des's reward/ Next Level for the alt-verse. They have crossed the Desmond-streams.

Eloise knowing exactly what was going on made perfect sense, given her presence and knowledge in Desmond's very first time travel adventure. And her fierce attachment to a world where her son not only survives but lives the life he wants rather than the life she forced on him is kind of heartbreaking. She scares me, but I like her.

Oh, me too, and for one reason: she acts and reacts as if she knows what's going on. Which she does. Even if she doesn't share things, it's nice to see decision-making on a show famous for hand-wringing. But consider Daniel's reaction to Desmond. I think they are both crossed-up. I sure hope Daniel fixing things doesn't make the alt-verse go away. That would break my heart.

I'm still in the dark about where Widmore falls on the good/bad scale. Does he want Des to cement the alt-verse as reality, where he and Penny aren't estranged and Daniel is alive? If yes, then CrazyEyes Desmond was right to go with Bad Seed Sayid, at least in the short term.

But what was with all that "Don't explain anything to me, Charles. I'll help you anyway. Oh, hey, Sayid. Come with you? Of course!"? I fully believe that Des will do anything to be with Penny. I just can't tell if them being together is ultimately good or bad for everyone else.

In this world, Des could always trust Sayid and never trust Widmore. So, Des was staying alive, staying alive, in both cases. I think that Widmore has to be a bad guy, badder than Ben. The difference is that Ben has always killed to protect the island, and according to just about everyone else, Widmore has killed to get to it. Motivation is everything. And come on, Desmond and Penny? That's populist-rhetoric/dime novel fiction writ large! Of COURSE they are good together. They have to be, or the foundation of our "Happily Ever After" world is terribly shaken.

Kill Me Now Charlie was a lot of fun (although I could go the rest of my life without hearing "You All Everybody" again), and I liked the parallel with that first adventure of Des's, where Charlie appeared. The intercutting between Charlie in the car and Charlie in the hatch was awesome.

I even enjoyed seeing Minkowski again, although I fully expected him to pull a gun or something on Des there at the end. If he does know about the alt-verse, he would certainly have a vested interest in keeping Des & Penny apart.

And I'm not all that fond of Charlotte, but am I the only one who wishes she could actually see the scene where Daniel saw Charlotte for the first time in the alt-verse? I'll bet Jeremy Davies would kill in that scene.

I really liked the episode, but now I'm more muddled than ever about what's going on. Why was it important for Jin to see Des? Why are all the SuperCouples split apart (Sun/Jin, Des/Penny, Sayid/Nadia, Charlie/Claire, Charlotte/Daniel, Jack/ Kate/ Sawyer/ Juliet), and is that significant?

What kind of scientist just turns the dangerous machine back on with no safety checks? For a god-like smoke monster with significant if unknown powers, why does un-Locke so often look like a harried Dad trying to untangle the Christmas lights?

Ditto that on "You All Everybody.". On one hand, I'm glad they wrote an original piece of pop music for the show. On the other hand, did they have to get it so right? I do like Charlotte. Oh, wait, that's just redheads. Never mind. But still.

They will, I'm sure, start bringing the couples back together, like particles in a supercollider, starting this next episode. And regarding Smokey Locke: I think he looks so harried because he's no longer in control of the plot. The humans are moving it around, even if they are not sure what they are moving, just yet. It's high time, too, for a few character deaths. Time to start cutting the chaff from the wheat. I nominate Kate first. Help Sawyer think without distraction, or someone he's got to rescue when she screws up and runs . . . again.

Mark Finn all everybody. Read more from Peggy at Rampant Biblioholism.

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