Michael Emerson (Ben Linus) said the finale would make me want to eat my soul, but after such a hearty breakfast, I can't take another bite. Surprisingly meaty bird -- the crow.
We're introduced to two characters in this two hour finale -- a blond man in white, Jacob (okay that's more formality than introduction) and a brunette man in black, Nameless Guy, who, despite being only normally hirsute, I'm dubbing Esau unless/until canon otherwise dictates. In real time, I was ticked that the show was wasting time on two new characters, even if Jacob isn't technically new, but they more than paid off, so it's all of the good. It seems Jacob and Esau have been on the island even longer than Richard, because they sit on the beach watching as The Black Rock approaches. Esau knows Jacob's arranged their arrival, bringing people to the island seems to be his thing. Esau says, "You're still trying to prove me wrong." Jacob says that's because Esau is wrong. Esau says, "They come, fight, destroy, corrupt. It always ends the same." Jacob says it can only end once. "Anything before that is just progress." Toward what end though, Jacob? Toward what end? Before we leave this dashing duo, Esau tells Jacob that he really wants to kill him and that someday, he'll find a loophole that allows him to do just that. So they were playing what Des so aptly Christened a "game" even back then. Jacob says, "I'll be right here." We cut to a profile of the statue's face and I have to check my mythology before writing the full recap, because now I don't know that he's Anubis, either. Crazy-ass show.
As a child, Kate (and kudos to the casting director here) and her model-airplane-owning friend go shoplifting. She gets caught stealing a New Kids On the Block lunchbox (hee). Just as the shop owner is set to call the police and her mother, Jacob appears in the store and offers to pay for it, so the shop-owner lets Kate off the hook. Jacob tells Kate to be good from now on, and I can't decide if he's causing her to miss an important childhood lesson, so that she'll become the criminal we know and love today, or if he's really trying to get her to be a good girl. We also see Jacob give young James Ford a pen after his parents' funeral, so that he can keep writing his letter to Mr. Sawyer. And Jacob is asking Sayid a question when Nadia is hit by a car (and I laughed despite myself, because she died a lot like Juliet's ex-husband did), which keeps Sayid from being killed along side her. He's there when Locke is defenestrated by his father, and tells him everything will turn out okay. And after Jack has his count-to-five-in-fear moment during surgery and repairs the dural sac he accidentally nicked, and yells at Christian for prompting him to count to five in the first place, Jacob is there, too. We'll, he's in the hallway and gives Jack the Apollo candy bar that he couldn't get out of the vending machine. Yeah, I haven't figured that out yet, either.
Meanwhile, in the main story, Kate convinces Juliet that they have to escape from the sub and stop Jack. Sawyer's against this. He wants to sail off, live his life and buy Microsoft shares, but he can't fight both of his women at once, so they knock out the guard who's handing out the sedatives, free themselves, and force the submarine's captain to bring them back. We next see them paddling a rubber raft back to the beach. They're greeted by Vincent, who leads them to BERNARD AND ROSE (who are alive, but less than thrilled to see them). Bernard and Rose say they're retired now (hee), and don't want anything to do with these kids and their shenanigans, which is really adorable. They do, however, set them on the path toward the Swan site, which is all our triumvirate of angst need.
In the tunnels, Sayid informs Jack that Daniel's notes indicate they don't have to take the whole bomb, just the core, and Daniel, being Daniel, left detailed instructions on how to remove it, arm it, dump it in the Swan and make everything go KABOOM. Richard helps Jack and Sayid break through a tunnel wall and into a Dharma house, but when Eloise insists on going first (because she won't hesitate to shoot anyone; ask her dead son), Richard knocks her out! He explains to Sayid and Jack that Eloise is his leader and he has to protect her. Jack and Sayid have to get from Dharmaville to the Swan site, on their own.
It seems they've broken into Horace's house, so Sayid suggests they "hide in plain sight" and dons one of Horace's jumpsuits. They make it about halfway across the quad when we see Phil and I'm sure he's going to recognize them, but no! It's waste-of-breath Roger Linus who spots them, and he since he knows Sayid is the man who shot his son, he returns the favor, getting Sayid somewhere in the gut area. Things look grim for Jack and (especially) Sayid, but they're saved by Hurley, Miles, Jin and a Dharma blue VW bus. The gang heads toward the Swan arguing and trying to stop Sayid from bleeding to death, when suddenly Hurley screeches the bus to a halt. He does so, because Kate, Juliet and Sawyer are standing on the road, all holding guns.
Sawyer asks Jack for five minutes alone to talk about what he's going to do. Sawyer talks with his fists, and Jack talks right back, taking the same tone. It looks like Jack will best Sawyer for a while, but the tables turn and Sawyer's just about to knock out Jack when he's stopped by Juliet who has totally changed her mind and thinks Jack ought to blow everything up, after all. When she's alone with Sawyer, we realize she changed her mind because Sawyer looked at Kate. Yes. That's what I said. And when Sawyer and Jack are alone, we realize that Jack wants to blow everything up because he had Kate but lost her. (Sawyer's all she's right on the other side of that bush, dumbass, go get her back). Maybe the stuck candy bar is a metaphor for Kate? What, it could be. Oh, all right, I'll stop and go back to eating my crow.
Anyhow, they let Jack go off on his own, but then the whole crew -- Sawyer, Juliet, Kate, Hurley, Jin and Miles -- decide to help him, although Miles does point out that in doing so, they could end up being the ones who cause "the incident." There's a big shoot-out at the Swan site, and our Lost-aways prevail, but they aren't able to stop the drilling in time. Everything on site that's metal gets sucked into the hatch, including towers and construction equipment, and even the Jeep in which the Radzinsky beast tries to flee. Jack (who at some point is momentarily stunned by a flying tool box, heh) throws the bomb down the hatch, Miles frees his father (whose arm is trapped under a thinggum) and tells him to run away as fast as he can. Everyone braces themselves for the blast that... doesn't come. Is the Jughead a dud? I would laugh and laugh, but there's no time. Somewhere in there, a chain gets wrapped around Juliet's waist and she can't get free. There's tear-jerking moment in which Sawyer tries to save her, much like he tried to keep Locke from falling into the well. But this time, there's no flash (well, not yet). And once Juliet realizes Sawyer loves her the way she wants him to or close enough, she lets go, leaving him devastated (me too, a little).
Meanwhile, in 2007, Richard leads Locke, who is leading his followers, to the four-toed statue ruins. Apparently Jacob lives inside the base. Locke and Ben go in (although Richard doesn't think Ben should). Outside, Ilana, Bram and the other self-identified "good guys" arrive with Frank and with their giant box and ask Richard what lies in the shadow of the statue. He answers in Latin: "Ile qui nos omnes servabit," which means "He who will protect/save us all." Except then they open the box to reveal Locke's corpse, which means whoever went inside with Ben isn't John Locke. Dead is dead, remember? Also, what's done is done, but that will wait for the recap. Inside, we learn Faux-Locke is Esau, who tells Jacob he can't imagine all he went through to find this loophole. And Ben ends up stabbing Jacob over and over, not so much because Esau-Locke wants him to, but more because Jacob never showed his face to Ben like he did to all the other island leaders, even though Ben always followed his (written) instructions, and because when Ben calls Jacob on this, Jacob's all and you are? However, none of that may matter in the long run, because back at…
The Swan Site: Juliet's down but she's not out. At the bottom of the hatch, she spies the Jughead core, and even though she's nearly dead herself, she manages to pick up a rock and bang on the bomb until BOOM!
Now that is what I call a reset. I'll catch you on the flipside with the full recap. Meanwhile, I'd like you to come up with a detailed plan on how I can make it to 2010 without seeing more of this show, because right now, the only thing I can think of involves a padded room, a straitjacket, and mainlining tranquilizers.
Previously on Lost: Daniel explains to Jack and Kate how "the incident" at the Swan is responsible for the crash of Oceanic flight 815. He wants to destroy the energy emanating from the hot pocket under the Swan by detonating the Jughead -- a hydrogen bomb. The music tells those of us who might not be paying attention that this is Cuh-RAZY, and Jack's eyes dance along to the beat.
Island; Four Toes: We're not on it, in front of it, or looking at it from a distance. Oh, no. We're right inside of the statue. We're inside of it with a man who is wearing rope sandals and homespun cloth. He works at a spinning wheel. We cut to him weaving a tapestry -- a fire is his only light. I start to worry about smoke inhalation because that's a pretty big fire he's got cooking and I don't see a chimney or any other kind of vent. Then I remember this is just a TV show, so I breathe and light a cigarette. We cut to...
The Beach In Front Of Four-Toes: Mr. Homespun wades into the surf and retrieves a fish from a primitive, conical trap. I refrain from making a way-too-easy red herring joke here, because come on, this is Lost. The whole thing is a red herring and I'm the joke, but I love it and wouldn't have it any other way. And besides he then takes the fish to his beach fire, filets it, and sets it to cook on a hot, fire-blackened rock. Knowing that The Black Rock is somewhere out on the horizon, my mind wanders to the risen Christ cooking breakfast for his disciples on the shore, while they were out fishing (John 21). I've always loved the deeper meaning of that account. They betrayed him, deserted him, denied him -- yet he fed, redeemed, and restored them. To me, it's the God of Jacob's relationship with Israel in microcosm, which is then a microcosm of the divine's relationship with all of mankind. Those of you who are fans of (other) Faith(s) can probably find stories that speak similarly to you, and those of you who are exclusively fans of Science can substitute "world" or "earth" for deity, there. We rape and pollute it, shed blood upon it, yet it sustains us, even taking us to its bosom and nursing us back to health.
Blond Mr. Homespun still wearing his tunic of white, and black pants, is greeted by a bearded man with salt and pepper hair, wearing a tunic of black. He's also wearing a rope belt around his waist, which seems silly, since like Homespun's, his tunic is only hip length and he's also wearing pants -- grey. But hey, he's got style. When Homespun offers his visitor some fish, Pepper declines, noting he just ate and I idly wonder if he is Smokey incarnate and what, and possibly who has sated his appetite. Pepper's there because he's spotted The Black Rock on the horizon. He knows Homespun brought "them" here, in an effort to prove him wrong. Homespun says this is because Pepper is wrong. Pepper says, "Am I? They come, fight, destroy, corrupt; it always ends the same." Spicy. Homespun says, "It can only end once. Anything before that is just progress." Pepper considers this and then looks Homespun straight in the eye. "Do you have any idea how badly I want to kill you?" Homespun does, so Pepper continues: "One of these days, sooner or later, I'm going to find a loophole, my friend." Homespun says when that day comes, he'll "be right here." The whole conversation, though menacing, is deliciously low-key. These aren't threats and rebuttals born in the heat of the moment. This is cold. This is old -- as old as sin itself.
Finally, Pepper says, "Always nice talking to you, Jacob." JACOB! And then I eat crow like I mentioned up top. That doesn't bother Jacob, though; he ignores my Old King Cole RPG and tells Pepper it was, "Nice talking to you, too." Pepper rises without ever once having been called by name. John, we don't even have a word for it. I'm tired of Pepper, so I hereby dub him Esau until and unless canon dictates otherwise (and perhaps afterwards, if I'm not pleased with the reveal). He's not overly hirsute, nor is he particularly ruddy. I don't even necessarily think he is Esau. I'm just calling him that, because I don't struggle with temptation. I give into it right away, so as not to wear myself out.