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Lost: The Candidate

Jin: "I won't leave you. I will never leave you again."

Okay, now I'm really upset. This was too much.

Four? Did we really just lose four cast members? Is this what we're in for? Are we going to see the cast getting picked off one by one (or in groups of four) in these last few episodes?

I always watch Lost episodes twice, and let me tell you, the second time through this one was brutal. That moment where Sun and Jin's clasped hands drifted apart got to me. So did Hurley sobbing. Even the early scene where Sun put Jin's ring back on his finger made me cry. The Sun/Jin story has always been tragic: big love, pulled apart by misunderstandings, family and outside forces, separated for three years by Island craziness. And now they're separated forever. Or together forever, depending on your view of the afterlife.

And of course, they're still alive, together and pregnant in the flashsideways universe. We saw Jin going down the hall in the hospital with flowers for Sun right after their deaths. It was like the writers were saying, Just wait a minute, they're not really dead, so there. I wish I could believe that. But it feels like they are truly gone.

My darling Sayid, who has always been my favorite character on this freaking show, went out in a literal blaze of glory. He even told Jack where Desmond was right before he sacrificed himself for his friends and for the world. We'll probably never know what was going on with Sayid and the evil inside of him, but it made me feel better that he overcame it. But unlike Jin and Sun, flashsideways Sayid isn't going to be with Nadia, is he? It doesn't seem quite fair.

Poor Frank. I liked him, but shades of Ilana, we barely got to know him. At least he got an action-packed final episode before checking out. I always thought he was there to fly the plane out in the finale. Although I seem to remember Jack took flying lessons and decided it wasn't for him. And we just learned that alt-Locke got a pilot's license, and promptly crashed a plane, so maybe Smokey can fly one. (What an interesting twist on the Cooper/Locke eight story window story. It's like Cooper got his karmic reward, isn't it?)

There were so many parallels to previous episodes. The bad guys using Kate to force Sawyer into his old cage, followed by another cage rescue. The sound of the button from the Hatch going critical. Alt-Jack and the Apollo candy bar that Jacob gave him. The most important one was the parallel to "The Incident" when Jack was begging Sawyer to trust him that the bomb wouldn't go off. You could just see Sawyer thinking, Hell no, Juliet died because of you.

Whose episode was this? It felt like Jack's and Locke's, since it began and nearly ended with them. Actually, it's been Jack versus Locke from the beginning of the series, hasn't it? Sayid's last words were, "It's going to be you, Jack." Jack as Jacob, Locke as the Man in Black. Will alt-Jack fix Locke in the flashsideways? Will it change anything on the Island?

And the episode began with alt-Locke muttering, "Push the button. I wish you had believed me." Near the end, alt-Jack said to Locke about the surgery, "I wish you'd believe me." There you go, ladies and gentlemen. The entire series in a nutshell.

What have we learned?

— Smokey cannot directly kill a candidate, but he can trick someone else into doing it. As he just tricked Sawyer into causing the explosion.

— The "infection" can be overcome. Sayid and Claire both did it. Well, Sayid did, for sure.

Character bits:

Alt-Jack was very much catching on to the weirdness of everyone he met being on flight 815. How Twilight Zone.

Why the hell did alt-Jack track down Cooper, anyway? What business was it of Jack's if Locke decided not to have surgery?

Cooper was vegetating in the Sun Palms Nursing Home. That sounds Island-like, doesn't it?

It was lovely to see Bernard again. And funny that he was Locke's dentist.

Everyone abandoned Claire again.

Alt-Claire never met her father. The music box played "Catch a Falling Star," which is what we all know Christian sang to her when she was little. And hey, Rousseau had an important music box, too.

Sawyer called Widmore's pudgy minion "Doughboy."

Where are Ben, Miles and Richard?

Bits and pieces:

— I gasped out loud when Kate was shot.

— Yeah, shoot at the smoke. That'll work.

— Loved the bamboo steps up to the plane.

— Didn't the sub have a torpedo tube? I guess some subs wouldn't, huh?

— Poor Kevin Tighe. It had to be a drag to get called back to play your incredibly diabolical character one last time, and all you get to do is sit there and drool.

— It has just been announced that the Lost finale will run two and a half hours. That's a big finale. Maybe they realized they were promising us answers and couldn't jam it in to what was left. Hope springs eternal.

You know the rule. If it makes me cry, it gets four polar bears,

Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. Why couldn't they just search the plane for bombs and fly out of there!? Seems safer than a gun battle and hijacking a submarine from Widmore!

    Of course they gave up on that, so Frank had to die as he was no longer useful. So messed up.

  2. Why is no one else upset that Jin didn't think "Gee, remember that child I have? Maybe I should swim up so I don't leave my daughter orphaned."

    Ugh, so unbelievably selfish.

    1. Jin was never going to make it to the surface alive without an air tank. And the idea of him leaving Sun behind is icky to me.

  3. Why is no one else upset that Jin didn't think "Gee, remember that child I have? Maybe I should swim up so I don't leave my daughter orphaned."

    I thought that at first, but someone elsewhere wrote this....
    Finally, let's talk about the Ji Yeon thing, because apparently this is an issue. I'm seeing Tweets and reading comments that basically say that Jin was a selfish jerk for choosing to die with his wife than give his kid a father. That's horrible! You mean to tell me that you think Jin would be a better man if he lived the rest of his life wracked with guilt over letting his wife die alone? Let me rephrase: How do you think Ji Yeon will feel when she gets old enough to realize that her father chose her over her mother? I suppose she might say, 'Wow! Thanks, Daddy! I feel special! I feel loved!' But if she was any kind of thoughtful, sensitive, normal person, I suspect she'd follow that up with: 'Wow. Now I kinda feel like crap. My dad chose me over his true love. He's never gotten over it. Does he secretly hate me? Does he blame me for his misery? Probably not, because my dad is kick-ass cool! He knows martial arts and catches fish! But has he never been able to love me fully because every time he looks at me he sees a choice he regrets? That's very possible, if not extremely likely. Now I have to live the rest of my life burdened with this guilt. Thanks, Dad. And thanks, Dead Mom. Thanks a lot!' I could be wrong. But I also think my defense of Jin is just as plausible as any criticism of Jin . I like to think that if Ji Yeon should ever learn about what happened to her mother and father, and if she were to ever learn of the choice her father made, she would be grateful, and more, she would be inspired. It's a wonderful story, a story that says something about the way life should be lived, a story she can pass on to her children, and they to their children, and so on. Jin didn't hurt his daughter with his choice — he gave her a gift. If you disagree with me, you're just wrong.
    ....and it makes sense.

  4. First half of the episode: Stink. Stank! STUNK!!!

    But the second half!!! WOW!!!

    I am hoping that what happened on that sub is somehow undone.

    That – bleeper – Jack better find a way to undo what happened on that sub!!!

    I cried a lot last night and sobbed. I ended up getting dizzy from crying. I was also pretty down most of today.

    I thought I was prepared, since it is the final season, for any character getting killed off at any time. But this was too much for me.

    My heart broke as Sun and Jin died.

    I'm not as devastated about Sayid because we didn't see a body, so the hope for him to have (somehow) survived is still there.

    I didn't gasp when Kate was shot. I yelled out "OH MY GOD, NO!!!"

    This was a brutal, but awesome episode.

  5. Is Frank actually dead? We saw him get knocked out and nothing else. No one stumbled on his dead body as they escaped the sinking sub. None of the producers have come forward to say ‘yeah, he’s dead, sorry”.

    Is it possible that the island still isn’t done with him yet?

  6. Mark, I'm so glad you posted that! I'd thought maybe I'd missed something.

    I don't think we should assume that he's dead. Not with the plane still intact, and without getting a proper death scene. Or even a death moment.

    Please? :-)

  7. My big guess for the final scene, which will likely be completely wrong, will have the survivors board that plane and fly off home while down on the beach Jack, the new Jacob, sits and watches them leave. Locke/MiB comes and sits down next to him and they re-enact the opening scene from ‘The Incident’ (“Do you have any idea how badly I want to kill you?”)

  8. Didn't like this one AT ALL. It made no sense whatsoever: the C4 at the plane ready for smokey so he could do his thing (I guess the REALLY VISIBLE cables meant that it was there to be seen and not be blown). The sub thing. The idiot Widmore guys. Everything.

    And the deaths?. Don't get me started. It's like someone on the writer's room said "ffffffffff*ck!. We only have 4 episodes left!. We have to start killing people NOW. Even if it looks ridiculous.

    Let me say, after investing all these years in Lost, I'm really worried now.

  9. OMG, it was soooo sad, so devastating, and so beautiful. I can't see why people would even think Jin would leave Sun behind. Sun had done it before and she was consumed with grief and guilt. Would that be the father Jin Yeon deserved? No way, besides if one of them had happened to be the one to substitute Jacob she would still be an orphan. That scene when he spoke to her in Korean made me cry my eyes out! I guess they realized it would be weird an "I love you and I'll die with you" in another language other than their one. At least they met again, loved each other deeply and died epically - WHY DID THEY HAVE TO DIE?!!!
    What about them crying on the beach? GOsh, I hadn't cried that much watching TV ever since Charlie drowned.
    As for Sayid, though I love him, I didn't get sad he died sacrificing himself. It was too painful to see him empty inside. At least, he fought the evil inside of him and now is in peace.
    His saying "it's going to be you, Jack" made me more certain that it is Jack who'll save them all. That was even stronger when you realized sideways jack is beginning to join some puzzles, quite rationally, of course, of everyone bonding after the Oceanic flight. I wonder what will happen when Jack and Desmond meet? In both lives!
    Not that I want that for Sawyer, but now he'll feel in his own flesh what it is to be guilt of someone's death - 3 for sure, one, uncertain. I don't think Frank is dead.
    What about Kate! Poor her, she's not needed so let's kill her! When she saw Jack on the beach it was touching.
    At the end of the episode I was so upset, so revolted with Jin and Sun dying that I said: I'm only watching Lost to see what happens to that thing!" Not quite true, I've got plenty of reasons to keep on till the end, and now I want THAT SOB-FAKE-LOCKE-MIB-SMOKE-MONSTER TO BE BURNT!!!!
    And I still believe the series will end with Jack opening his eyes.
    Oh, so sad!!!!! For the thrilling action 3 polar bears, for killing some of my favorite characters -1 polar bears!!!

  10. Claire may be fighting internally to come back from the dark side, but if people keep forgetting her and abandoning her like they're doing, she's going to get so peeved she'll take them all out for the Man in Black without batting an eyelash soon!

  11. I've been thinking a lot about the Ji Yeon thing that so many find objectionable.

    I really felt like the need to survive for Ji Yeon was unspoken in Sun's pleas to Jin. I could feel it in the looks between them and the way she delivered her lines. So I think it is unfair to suggest that it wasn't foremost in their minds.

    I agree that many men in that circumstance would choose to live so that one parent could be there for their child. But this is a television series. A story, not reality. And thematically, for the story we've seen play out for Jin and Sun over the last six years, it made more dramatic sense for him to stay and for them to die together. After all their years of separation and searching, how could he leave her in that moment?

    It is, of course, heartbreaking that Ji Yeon is now an orphan, and as a parent, I can understand why people think he should have tried to escape. But to me, Jin's choice made the most dramatic sense for the story.

  12. Isn't "I wish you'd believe me" what was written on the piece of paper that [original] Locke wrote to Jack and given to Jack after Locke was killed?

  13. ding ding ding! You're right, Anonymous. Great catch.

  14. This episode brought it home to me how absolutely evil flocke is. Yes yes i now he can turn into a large pillar of black smoke that makes noises that i really never want to hear up close. But when he loks like people up until now the worst he's done(as if this aint bad) is manipulate people. But when he just strolled up and snapped that guys neck i though "you know theres no humanity there at all no matter what you happen to have told other people"

  15. I actually assumed Jin stayed with Sun because he spent the whole time trying to save her, and his chances of making it to the surface after the sub had been sinking and he gave Jack the air bottle were extremely slim. And he wasn't going to leave Sun (again) to probably die swimming up. It's really sad but at least their ghosts can talk to Hurley 8-)

    I agree with that first post. Why didn't they just all search the plane for bombs and leave. Seems to make a lot more sense. Instead they doomed Frank to uselessness :P

    I'm glad Sayid redeemed himself, and that Desmond's still alive!!! I see Sawyer sacrificing himself to save the group next.

    Watch Claire be all "you abanonded me again!" Even though they called her over n over.

    Where are Rose, Bernard and Vincent!? And of course, where are Ben, Richard and Miles? They better have been up to awesomeness.

    "Everyone dies in this" - Jay

  16. Billie, I love your site. I am a long-time reader, but a first-time poster. I have some thoughts on the Sun/Jin storyline and would like to bounce them off all of you.

    So much has been made of Jin staying with Sun rather than trying to escape to be with their daughter. I don't think that would have been allowed to happen, and here is why:

    - We know that Widmore paid a lot of money to put the fake wreckage at the bottom of the ocean. If Jin, who has been presumed dead for 3 yrs, returned it would open up a can of worms, and Widmore would not allow that.

    - Also, Jin has been a headstone in a Korean cemetary for 3 yrs, and Sun presumably received a monetary settlement from his death. If he suddenly turns up alive, and Sun is now missing/presumed dead from *another* plane crash, again, this would draw unwanted attention that Widmore would not allow.

  17. Gosh! What a tragic, heart wrenching episode.
    It so sad to see Jin and Sun dead, atleast they will now be together in the afterlife.

    I see Jack taking over the role of Jacob, and most likely Locke as the smokey.

    Had such a sleepless night after seeing this episode, the only other episode that made me feel so low was season 3 ending where Charlie gave up his life to save the rest.

    RIP Sun and Jin. You will be missed.

    And in all this I totally forgot about Sayid, mebbe his persona in this final season that had made him so alienated. Atleast he overcame his devils and died for a good cause and what did he mean when he told Jack?


  18. Is it just me or is Lost deliberately trying to ignore the fact that Jin and Sun are parents? It's been repeated several times this season that Kwan is a candidate, but which one? If you ask me the real candidate is still alive and maybe even a loophole that Jacob created to foil the 'smoke monster's' agenda.

  19. KAte asked - "they're all dead?" and locke said - "Not all of them". who did he mean? did he sensed that jack was still alive ? I don't think so. I think he meant that not all the candidates are dead - since there is still the sixth candidate that we don't know his name just yet. my guess is that the sixth candidate is Desmond - this is why locke couldn't kill him and had to send Sayid to do the job, and now he'll take Claire to Desmond and convience her to kill him.

  20. Is it bad for me to say that out of all the deaths I still feel the worst for Frank Lapidus? I loved that guy. I really Really REALLY hope that he isn't dead.

  21. Oh and also -- I heard somewhere (can't remember where exactly) that a candidate CANNOT kill him/her self. Since Jin did technically commit suicide (by refusing to leave Jin) that kind of factors him out as the candidate.

  22. Is it just me that thinks that Frank may not be dead? He looked like he should be, but following the golden rule of Tv and Film: If you dont see them die then they probably arent dead (Eg Desmond the other week), then im expecting him to pop up somewhere. As im assuming Ben, Richard and Miles turn up later on. I think Rose and Bernard wont come up in the OT, I enjoyed their last scene and thought it was a good way for them to bow out.

    Been saying all season Jack will be the new jacob, so ill stick with that. For me the mystery is Widmores role in all of this. What are his motives?

    And I completely agree with the Mark Greig comment (5th from the top), thats how I see the finale.

    Cant wait for next weeks episode...

  23. Hey, Billie, great review as always.

    One thing: The Lost finale will apparently be 108 minutes. Two and a half hours is how long it will be with commercials, but it's 108 minutes of Lost. Which is darn cool in itself.

  24. Clearly i'm a heartless cow because this episode didn't even remotely move me to tears. Saying that none of the four characters were favourites of mine so that's probably why. And like others i'm not convinced that Frank is dead.

    I'm glad Sayid went out in a blaze of glory like that because a)it was in character b)he saved the lives of some of the others and c)i honestly don't think the writers would have given him a happy ending no matter what. This way i can believe that he's at least in peace rather than alive and tortured.

    I can understand why Sun and Jin's deaths have upset so many but after keeping them apart for so long i think the writers had to keep them together to the end. Alive would have been better but i can understand the choice Jin made. In extreme circumstances people do extreme things. Is it so strange that he chose the wife he had loved and been seperated from for years over the child he had never even seen ? I'd have a much bigger problem with this if Sun had made the decision having given birth and raised her child for three years. Also, it was keeping in with an overall Lost theme. Kids in this show rarely get raised by both biological parents. Maybe the writers all had bad childhoods.

    Roll on next weeks epi.

  25. ZFreud said...
    KAte asked - "they're all dead?" and locke said - "Not all of them". who did he mean? did he sensed that jack was still alive ? I don't think so. I think he meant that not all the candidates are dead - since there is still the sixth candidate that we don't know his name just yet. my guess is that the sixth candidate is Desmond - this is why locke couldn't kill him and had to send Sayid to do the job, and now he'll take Claire to Desmond and convience her to kill him.

    Interesting, but I don't think the reason FLocke said that has to do with some anonymous candidate. He said he knew the sub sunk, and that they weren't all dead...most likely because he couldn't leave the island after it blew up. Based on deduction, FLocke not being able to leave = Jack/Sawyer/Hurley still alive...if there had been another candidate I think FLocke would have tried to get that person on the sub as well.

    Someone else mentioned how evil FLocke seemed this episode...I agree, and not just for the neck snapping. We all basically found out that this whole season was a long con by him to everybody...building up their trust and what not, to make the candidates think they were screwing him over, when in reality, he was pulling the strings all along.

    Someone also mentioned that they felt the looks Sun was shooting Jin in the sub were conveying how she wanted him to return for their child...I totally got that vibe as well :)

    And for a final note for now...I'm willing to bet a case of Dharma beer Frank isn't dead. There's no way.

  26. After catching up with the last two episodes i think that the more deaths the bigger the probability that the alternative reality will become the only reality with the added bonus that everyone will remember their lives on the island. We will see. Just a week to go.

  27. Sob.

    Goddamn you, self-imposed Lost rewatch, for making me cry again.

  28. Oh my dear God! I was so afraid that this was going to happen, but I did not anticipate my reaction to it. And, four at one go is too much for my heart to bear. I managed to just weep until Hurley started to cry. That did it; I was sobbing like a child.

    I liked all four of these characters very much, three of them since the very beginning. Sun had such a wonderful character arc beginning in episode one when she unbuttoned her sweater; watching Jin turn into an English speaking man who loved and respected his wife; Sayid, the torturer, who was so tortured himself by what he had done; and, Frank, who always made me smile. RIP to them all.

    Except, we don't really know if they're dead, do we? I agree with Billie; it feels right now as though they are. In spite of myself, I am hoping that the end shows us that the flash sideways is where they all end up -- alive, if not entirely well.

  29. Celticmark, this is my fourth time through, so I know what you mean. I never saw the show when it originally aired. I haven't seen this episode yet this time, but I can't wait for my daughter to watch it with me in the next few days. This episode is one of the best to me because of Jin and Sun's death. There has been quite a transformation in our view of Jin over the series which is quite significant with repeated viewings. This show has two themes that strike a chord with me, community and redemption. It is one of the best TV shows ever made.

  30. TV Characters rarely every make me feel heart-broken. But seeing Anthony Cooper in that wheelchair, mentally disabled, broke my dang heart. I still don't know what this alternative universe is supposed to be. From what it sounds like, Anthony was an incredibly loving father, and his demise was not well-deserved in this universe. I have an incredibly soft spot for those who can't take care of themselves, and it was the closest thing to make me tear up watching this entire show. To top it all off, John refuses to take the operation as it was all his fault. I don't think he's purely punishing himself (Even though that's mostly what it is). I think it's also his way of relating to his father post-accident. Had he taken the procedure, he might feel incredible guilt towards him being able to walk again when his father never will. It's really, really sad stuff. The Jin and Sun scene was also sad, but that John scene...


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