Wowza. Last night's episode got so crazy, I pulled out my reporter's notebook and started scribbling such cryptic notes that by this morning, it looked like I was Jacob. There were so many crazy tidbits, but I think this episode really upped the ante with Sideways Jack.
Just like how last week showed us a Locke who could let things go and move on, this week's episode showed us a Jack who could think of someone other than himself FOR ONCE and recognize his demons and try to stop them. He was a father, a flawed father at that, and when he realized it, he was able to dig deep and forge a real connection with his son.
This will be all over the place, as it always is, and as always, I suggest you read Doc Jensen's much more cohesive and exhaustive recaps at Entertainment Weekly. But here are some thoughts:
* THE APPENDIX SCAR!!! Early in the episode, Jack raised his shirt and looked quizzically at the appendix scar as though it hadn't been there all his life. He asked mom where it came from and she said, "Don't you remember? You were 7..." And he had no recollection of the event. As we all know, his appendicitis kicked in on the island and he was patched up by Juliet. The fact he had no memory of the event but his mother did could have been completely innocent OR could suggest that somehow, in some way, Sideways Jack is reincarnated Island Jack and has somehow retained some elements of his previous existence. Yet somehow, his mother had a "don't you remember" answer for it; why?
*JACK'S A DAD: And his son's name is David! And he plays piano, just like Jack did. And we have no idea who his mom is, but boy didn't her house seem familiar? I thought it was Kate's post-Island house at first...am I wrong? By the way, King David (of the Bible) was a warrior, musician and poet who wrote the Book of Psalms. He was David as in David and Goliath.
* The Annotated Alice: Jack read the book to David as a child; other bloggers have noted he also read the book to baby Aaron when he and Kate were shacked up. The book is an exhaustive explanation of all the hidden symbols, wordplay and mathematical concepts in Lewis Carroll's books about Alice. We've had many, many references to "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass" on LOST and I think it's pretty easy to take the book as a hint that this Jack is another incarnation of Jack.
It's also not hard to draw on the literal interpretation of "Through the Looking Glass" in the show. Island Jack looked into a mirror at the end of the episode and saw his own home reflected back and went batshit crazy.
* Jacob's message for Jack (as interpreted through Hurley): "You have what it takes." Jack's father always said quite the opposite, and as predicted, it got a rise out of Jack. This planted another seed in my mind that Island Christian is, in some way, Jacob. But then again, he could just as easily be the MIB. Ugh. Confusion.
* Claire as New Rousseau: So I think we're all agreed Claire is the New Rousseau. But to what degree? Rousseau was crazy, but she still could distinguish those who had the "sickness" from those who did not. I always figured she was crazy because a) she was tormented and her baby was stolen and b) she's French.
Claire, however, seems positively delusional crazy. Her interaction with Jin was sooooo similar to Rousseau's first encounter with Sayid, right down to the piles of explosives and shrine to missing baby. She talked about not being alone and introduced her friend, the MIB, who was all like, "Sup, it's me. Dun dun DUN." She also talked about being taken to the temple, branded (like Sayid was two weeks ago) and poked at.
There are so many things that don't add up about this.
1) Why does she not realize she left the camp and abandoned her baby? Is it because she is infected with "the sickness" which seems to be paranoia?
2) I don't frankly buy Claire becoming renegade Rousseau. Rousseau was always tough as nails, but Claire was always needing someone to help or rescue her.
I think she was enticed by the vision of Christian (as we know), who might have been an appearance of the Man in Black, and through his Smokey Magic, became completely confused about everything. Claire was always quick to grow angry and distrustful, and that seems to be exacerbated by the fact she's flat out CRAZY now.
One last note about Claire: She's in Christian's Sideways World will. What do we think about that?
* Hurley's Theories: How awesomely rewarding was it to hear Hurley say maybe Adam and Eve were the LOSTIES after some time travel gone bad? Is that a producer's wink at us or is he right?
* HOLY CRAP THE LIGHTHOUSE: So apparently there was this huge lighthouse right near the caves that no one discovered. OR as Hurley sagely said, "Guess we weren't looking for it." In other words, guess we weren't looking for answers about why we were here. We were looking for any way off this godforsaken place." Which can be further extrapolated to the questions all of us ask (or avoid) about "why we're here."
I thought it was fascinating they immediately cut to the conservatory, where Sideways Dogen told Jack, "It's hard to watch and be unable to help." Story of Jack's life, isn't it? But that's a gift fatherhood could give Jack: restraint.
Meanwhile, Jack went apeshit when he saw the dial/mirror combo that had the names of the LOSTIES, some crossed out, and at 23 degrees, his own name and his childhood home. He didn't like the idea Jacob had been watching, and totally ruined the whole thing. But Jacob seemed nonplussed when he told Hurley that, basically, some people can accept things on faith and some things need to learn lessons for themselves.
Again, story of Jack's life. Island Jack is again established as the Man of Science who needs proof. Strange since only a couple weeks ago, he seemed to be giving in to the mystical properties and unexplained elements of the island.
So what do we think all this means? I think this episode gave more support to my personal theory that the Sideways World is not just an alternative version of events, but events informed by the past memory of Island World. I think it's a form of reincarnation, perhaps not adhering to the Hindu ideas we're already familiar with. What do you guys think is going on?