Tonight is the big return of Lost after a THREE MONTH hiatus. For most shows, that’s the equivalent of a full summer hiatus, and we’re all a little foggy in September about what happened way back in April and May, so here is a primer to help catch you up by reminding you of what happened in those first 6.
The season 2 finale ended with the hatch imploding, the sky turning violet, a loud screechy noise piercing everyone’s eardrums; Charlie walking out of the volatile area looking shaken but unharmed; Desmond, Locke, and Eko trapped inside the hatch; Jack, Sawyer, and Kate being kidnapped by the Others, and Hurley being sent back to the beach to tell everyone not to try to find them; and Sayid, Sun, and Jin on a boat circling the island. Then, to top it off, two men in a hut in a blizzard receive a signal indicating where something is (presumably the island) and they call Penelope, Desmond’s girlfriend, to tell her they’ve found something.
Oh, and that last part wasn’t touched on AT ALL in the first six, so let’s move on.
The first episode was called A Tale of Two Cities. It opened with a flashback to the day of the crash, when a woman in a house is conducting a book club on Stephen King’s Carrie, and they hear a loud noise outside. Everyone rushes outside to see a plane breaking apart in the air, and the man known to us in season one as Henry Gale comes rushing out of his house. Guess what? We’re on the island, and this is the little commune of the Others (complete with running water, electricity, etc.) The main flashback (Jack’s) focused on his erratic behaviour following the breakup of his marriage to Sarah. He begins thinking his father is having an affair with her, but it’s not true, and his refusal to let her go is what dogs him. In the present, Jack is brought to an indoor room with a glass partition. He’s on one side with a large metal table and several chains hanging from the ceiling. Juliet, the woman from the opening, comes to him trying to get him to eat and realize he can trust her, but he doesn’t. Henry Gale – now known to us as Ben – lurks outside the room, looking for updates of Jack’s condition. When Juliet gets a little too close, Jack grabs her, moves out into the hallway, and opens what turns out to be a door to the ocean. It’s stopped in time, but Jack now realizes he’s being kept in an aquarium underwater. Juliet brings in a complete file on Jack’s life, and reveals that they know absolutely everything about him. He asks if Sarah is happy, and Juliet says yes, and at that moment he lets it go. Meanwhile, Sawyer awakes in an outdoor metal cage. There’s a button with a fork and knife on it. He pushes it, nothing. Again, nothing. Third time, big electrical jolt. He eventually figures out how to hold a rock down on one section, stand in another, and throw his shoe to the button, and he gets rewarded with a bunch of seeds, water, and a fish biscuit. Another man in the cage opposite, named Carl, escapes, tries to get Sawyer to escape, but he’s caught too soon. Kate wakes up in a shower. Tom (Mr. Friendly from season 2) gives her a dress, and Ben has breakfast on the beach, telling her that the next 2 weeks are going to be very difficult. When she’s brought to Carl’s cage, Sawyer is concerned something’s happened to her, and she’s acting strangely.
The second episode was The Glass Ballerina. The flashback belonged to Sun and Jin, and we catch up with the two of them and Sayid on the boat. Jin is arguing with Sun about how they need to go back, despite Sayid wanting to stay and wait for Jack to return. The flashback revealed Sun’s affair with Jae Lee, and her father walking in on the two of them in bed together. Mr. Paik calls Jin into his office and tells him he needs to kill Jae Lee to preserve the family honour, that Jae Lee has taken something from him. When Jin confronts Lee, he’s unable to actually kill him, and instead tells him to run far away and never come back. He goes outside to get into his car, and Jae Lee lands on the hood of the car. Seems Paik took matters into his own hands. In the present, Sayid docks the boat and decides to build a huge fire to bring the Others to them, and says they’ll kidnap 2 hostages (because one will talk if you threaten the other, a very important comment in light of what the Others have done). He tells Sun, and Jin figures it out, telling Sayid he understands more English than Sayid apparently thinks. Over at the compound, Colleen, one of the Others, tells Ben that they’ve spotted Sun, Jin, and Sayid with a boat. Ben is dumbfounded, and says he wants that boat. Colleen is married to Danny, known as Pickett in season 2, and she heads out with a couple of other… Others. Kate and Sawyer are taken out to an open area where they have to break rocks. Kate breaks them, Sawyer hauls them in a wheelbarrow. Several Others stand guard, while other people are enslaved. Alex, from the previous season, hides in the bushes and whispers to Kate, asking her if she’s seen Carl and if she knows what they did to him. Sawyer, thinking Kate’s pretty hot in her little dress, just strides over to her and kisses her in the middle of the day, getting beaten up as a result. Back over on the boat, Sun is below deck while Sayid and Jin wait on the shore. They don’t anticipate the Others will approach by sea, but they do, and board the boat. Colleen confronts Sun underneath the deck, and Sun has a gun. Colleen says they know all about her and everyone else, and Sun is a good person unable to shoot the gun. But she’s wrong: Sun shoots her, and manages to get on deck and throws herself overboard. They misjudged Sun. The episode ends with Ben telling Jack his name is Benjamin Linus, and they roll in a television to show him the Red Sox won the World Series while they’ve been on the island. Jack’s entire world view is changed as a result.
Episode 3 was Further Instructions, a Locke episode, and the only one of the six not to feature Kate, Jack, and Sawyer at all. (The events of this episode are meant to run concurrent with the previous two.) In the flashback, we go back about 10 years to where Locke picks up a young hitchhiker and takes him back to a commune where he’s been staying. The kid appeals to Locke’s gentler side, but he really wants to know what’s going on in the greenhouse, suspecting it’s a bomb. The people in the commune are happy to have the kid, and have embraced Locke with open arms. But when the kid is revealed to be an undercover cop, the people in the commune – and their grow op – are in serious trouble, and they all turn on Locke. Locke does the only thing he thinks he can do – take the kid out to the woods to shoot him – but he’s unable to follow through on it, and wonders if he’s a farmer, not a hunter. On the island, Locke has awakened from the blast, unable to speak. He asks Charlie to help him, and he builds a sweat lodge. Inside the lodge, he hallucinates seeing Boone, and Boone takes him through the airport, telling him someone here is in dire need of his help. He realizes it’s Eko, who’s been taken by a polar bear, and sets off to find him, with the help of Charlie. While in the jungle, they run into Hurley, returning from when the Others had kidnapped him. He continues on to the beach, running into a completely naked Desmond (hilarity ensues) and realizes Desmond seems to be able to see the future. Des tells him the hatch imploded, and in this episode we see what remains of the hatch (i.e. a giant, gaping hole in the ground). Locke finds the polar bear cave, manages to extricate Eko from it, but Eko’s not in good shape. He tells Locke that he’s a hunter, not a farmer, but then again, it appears Locke just imagined him saying it. This episode introduced us (sadly) to Nikki and Paolo, the unfortunate two newbies. Paolo stands on the beach going, “Duuhhhhh” and Nikki yells at Hurley two seconds after he’s returned and told them Jack’s been kidnapped, sniping, “WHEN were you going to tell us this, Hurley???!!!” To which he should have replied, “Oh, gee, maybe if I could have teleported here I could have told you sooner, but I just had to walk across this ENTIRE ISLAND. What have you been doing that’s so much more important? Peeling a coconut? Blending in with the sand and trees? Why don’t you just return to the background where you belong?” But… he didn’t.
The fourth episode was Every Man for Himself, a Sawyer ep. In this flashback, we see Cassidy charged him with conning her, and he faced prison time. While inside, he met Munson, a guy who’d stolen $10 million from the government and had it hidden somewhere. The warden was treating Munson better than the others, and Sawyer told him that it’s because he wants to know where the money is, so he’ll sidle up to him, then his wife, and they’ll take the money and he won’t get any. Eventually Munson comes clean to Sawyer, tells him where it is, and asks him to move it. Sawyer goes straight to the warden with the info, taking a cut, and gets the rest of his sentence commuted. He’d been conning Munson all along. Cassidy comes to visit Sawyer in prison, and shows him a picture of their daughter. He says it’s not his, but when the warden asks him where to put the money, he puts it into an account for the girl. More interesting than the flashback was the island stuff. Ben et al take Sawyer out of his cage and bring him into a room like Jack’s. They strap him to a table and put a shot in him, and when he awakes, Ben holds a cage over him with a bunny, and shakes it until the bunny keels over, dead and twitching. He says they’ve put a pacemaker in the rabbit and its heart explodes if the pulse goes over a certain number. Then he tells Sawyer they’ve put one in him, and if his heart rate exceeds 140, he’ll be dead. In the end, they’re conning him – “the only way to get a con man to respect you is to con him,” says Ben – but they do take him out of his cage at one point and up to the edge of the island… and point across the ocean to where the OTHER island is. Turns out, the Others are on an island that’s twice the size of Alcatraz, and escaping it will be about as likely as escaping that infamous prison. They’re stuck. Meanwhile, the other Others bring back Colleen, and Juliet begs Jack to try to save her life. As he’s scrubbing in, he sees some spinal x-rays on the wall and notices a tumour on one of them. He goes into the OR, but it’s too late, and he’s unable to save her. Danny goes nuts, runs out to Sawyer’s cage, and begins beating his head against the bars. Kate screams that she loves him, and it makes him stop. Over on the beach, Desmond tells Claire she might want to move away from her tent for the night, but she refuses to do so, so he builds a lightning rod near it, and sure enough, lightning strikes it, just barely missing Claire. Charlie stares at him, realizing Des is a little different now.
The Cost of Living was an Eko flashback. Immediately following the events of “The 23rd Psalm,” this episode shows what happened when Eko returned to his brother’s church. The militia shows up soon after Eko takes over as faux priest, demanding 80% of their biannual vaccines in return for “protection.” Eko goes to a black market trader to arrange a deal to sell some of the vaccines directly, and then massacres the militiamen when they come back. The people of the parish are mortified, and tell him that they have to board up the church because it’s no longer sacred, and he needs to repent for all of his sins. But, as we see in an even earlier flashback, his first confession was after he’d stolen food for his hungry brother. As far as Eko is concerned, why should one have to repent for doing what was necessary? The nurse adds, “You owe your brother one church,” finally explaining why he was building it. In the present, Eko awakes from his unconscious state, and makes his way to the Pearl hatch to see Yemi’s body, because he believes Yemi is contacting him. When he gets there, the body is no longer in the airplane. Meanwhile, Locke, Desmond, Sayid, Nikki (ick), and Paolo (blech) also tag along, and go down into the Pearl station. When Nikki (right… because SHE would have spotted this long before Sayid or Locke) realizes that 6 televisions must be watching 6 hatches, Sayid patches into one of them and they see a man in an eyepatch staring back at them, before he disappears. Up on the main ground, Eko follows a vision of his brother to a garden, where his brother asks him to repent. Eko refuses, saying he doesn’t have anything to ask forgiveness for. He never asked for the life he was given, but he lived it the best that he could. So he does not need to repent for anything. Yemi looks upset, but counters, “You talk to me as if I were your brother” and disappears into the jungle. Eko follows, but encounters instead the smoke monster, which grabs him, throws him against the trees, up in the air, and crashes him to earth. Eko whispers to Locke, “You’re next,” and dies. Meanwhile, over at the compound, Jack asks Ben how long he’s had the spinal tumour. The Others bury Colleen in a religious funeral service, and Ben comes to Jack telling him that they had a master plan all worked out where they’d manipulate Jack into thinking he’d chosen to do the surgery, but now he’s running out of time and needs Jack to want to do it. Juliet comes into the room to talk to Jack, but pops in a tape of her holding up cue cards instructing Jack to pretend to have an “accident” on the operating table, killing Ben. Can he trust her?
The final episode, “I Do,” was a Kate flashback that showed us her brief marriage to Kevin (we first heard of it when she played “I never” with Sawyer in season 1). Kevin, played by Nathan Fillion, is a loving man who knows Kate as Monica, not realizing she’s a fugitive on the run (he’s a cop, so this coming to light would have serious consequences for him). Kate is head over heels in love with him, and is distraught over the fact she’s deceiving him. She calls the marshal, who tells her he’ll stop chasing her if she stops running, but says he knows that’ll never happen. She takes a pregnancy test, and when it’s negative, she leaves Kevin, drugging him and confessing to everything. In the present, Jack goes through Ben’s file and says he won’t do the surgery. Kate and Sawyer go off to break rocks, and Alex shows up with a slingshot demanding to know where Carl is. She’s escorted “home,” says Juliet, but we don’t know where that is. Juliet walks Kate into Jack’s cage and tells her what to say along the way, and when Kate gets there she begs Jack to do the surgery, saying if he doesn’t, Danny is going to kill Sawyer. Jack, furious that he’s been put in this position, tells Kate to leave. Locke, Sayid, Desmond, Tweedledum and Tweedledumber bury Eko, and just as Locke is saying the final words, he sees the words “Lift your eyes and look to the north” etched on Eko’s Jesus stick, so he knows which direction to head to look for Jack et al. Danny tells Kate and Sawyer if they have anything to say to each other, do it tonight, because Sawyer dies tomorrow. Kate, who’s figured out how to get out of her cage, does so, and opens Sawyer’s and walks into it. He finally tells her there’s no escaping the island, that they’re trapped on ANOTHER island. She’s completely devastated, and wants to know why he didn’t tell her, and he said he wanted her to have the hope. She begins to cry, kisses him, and they make love in the cell. Meanwhile Jack hears over his com device to try his door, and he opens it, wanders out into the hall, grabs a gun from the armory, and just then looks up at Ben’s TV monitors and sees Kate and Sawyer in a post-coital cuddle. Ben enters, and Jack says he’ll do the surgery, but he wants off this island. Ben says, “Done.” The next morning, Jack scrubs in, Ben’s on the table, and Juliet is assisting. Danny goes to Sawyer’s cage, takes him out and holds a gun to his head. Kate screams repeatedly for them to stop. Suddenly, in the OR, Ben’s pulse drops. Jack turns to Tom and tells him that he’s made an incision in his kidney, and they have one hour to let Kate and Sawyer go or he won’t stitch it up and Ben will die. Tom radios Danny just as he’s about to pull the trigger, and he hands his walkie-talkie to Kate. Jack tells her to run, and if he doesn’t hear from her in an hour, he’ll know something happened. She keeps yelling back they CAN’T run, because Jack doesn’t know they’re on a different island, but he yells, “Dammit, Kate, RUN!” The end.