Since there’s no new episode of ‘Lost’ this week, I figured this would be as good a time as any to look back at last week’s episode, ‘The Last Recruit’. The past six years have been a long, crazy ride, haven’t they? I have to assume that anyone still watching at this point must be fully vested in the show’s convoluted plotting and complex mythology. I’m not even going to attempt to recap everything that’s happened this season, or explain the business with the “flash-sideways” or the battle between Jacob and the Man in Black. I’ll just assume that you’re already up to speed on that. Instead, let me point out some things that stood out to me in this most recent episode. A warning: If you’re not a die-hard fan of ‘Lost’, you’ll probably have no idea what I’m talking about. (Spoilers after the break.)
‘The Last Recruit’ was not an episode of major revelations. This was more of a pieces-falling-into-place episode. The producers seem to be lining things up for the inevitable gigantic mind-screw at the show’s end. Nonetheless, we did get a few interesting tidbits.
The biggest thing that I can’t wrap my brain around was Man in Black/Fake Locke claiming that he’d been the one parading around as Christian Shephard. This doesn’t make sense to me for a couple reasons. Man in Black allegedly can’t leave the island, and yet we’ve seen Dead Christian off the island on at least two occasions. He appeared to Jack at the hospital in L.A. during one of the flash-forwards in Season 4, and he appeared to Michael on the freighter just before the freighter blew up.
Either Man in Black was lying about being Christian Shephard (possible), all of his talk about wanting to “go home” wasn’t really referring to leaving the island, but rather to leaving the reality they’re in entirely and moving to the flash-sideways reality (possible, but dubious), or the writers just plain screwed up.
Further, I don’t think that Christian’s actions over the seasons have been entirely consistent with him being on Team Black. For example, we know that Michael had been “touched” by Jacob, and thus was not capable of killing himself or causing his own death (hence his failed attempts at suicide in New York). But that’s essentially what he was doing on the freighter, sitting there waiting for the bomb to go off. Just before it did, Christian showed up and told him that everything was all right, and that he could go now. Wouldn’t this have been Jacob “lifting” his gift/curse? Does Man in Black have the power to reverse Jacob’s blessing? And if he does, why would MiB want the freighter blown up? Isn’t that something Jacob wanted, in order to keep his “Candidates” on the island with him? Christian has also guided characters toward things that seemed to be in Jacob’s favor on other occasions as well. And yet, sometimes he does seem to be working for/with/as Man in Black, such as pushing Claire to follow Fake Locke. It’s been my feeling that Christian was a free agent on the island, working toward his own agenda. I really need this to be addressed before the end of the season.
Also confusing: Claire tells Jack that by talking to Fake Locke at all, that automatically secured him on Team Black. This seems to be consistent with what Dogan told Sayid. Paraphrasing here: “Don’t let him say a word, or it’ll be too late.” And that’s basically the same thing that Man in Black told Richard about Jacob during Richard’s flashback. The minute he says a word, he’s won you over. So, if that’s the case, why is Sawyer able and actively trying to break ranks? Shouldn’t he be drinking the MiB Kool Aid by now? Even Sayid seemed to be exercising free will again at the end. (You know he didn’t really kill Desmond, right?)
Don’t get me wrong, this was a good episode. We’re just in that stage where the writers are holding back from quite explaining everything, and I’m trying my best to figure it out. I’m sure there’s an explanation for all of this, but for now I’m… well… lost.