I have to be honest here: I'm not entirely sure how I feel about the Lost series finale. In some ways, it's a perfect ending: epic, emotional, final. I teared up, I choked up and felt like I was sending my beloved show off into the sunset—just as I should. On the other hand: there are so many questions left. So many. The finale doesn't answer many of the things that die-hard fans have been waiting for since the first and second seasons. I feel a little manipulated—part of the reason I got so hooked on Lost is because I couldn't wait to see the show's many mysteries unfold. Whether you're satisfied with it or not, there is so much to talk about! I want to hear all of your thoughts, so without further adieu, let's begin.
- You can already feel the sadness in the opening scene of the episode. There's just something about the music playing over the actions that are unfolding: we see each of the Losties' island lives juxtaposed with their lives in the sideways world. Jack looking at Locke's X-rays, Sawyer in the cop locker, Locke undergoing surgery. There's that delicious excitement that something huge is about to happen.
In the sideways world:
- In the sideways world, the precious cargo that is Christian Shephard's body finally arrives, and Desmond picks it up. Desmond gets a quick interrogation from Kate, who wants to know why he sprung her from jail. His response is cryptic: "No one can tell you why you're here, Kate. Certainly not me." Then he says that all he wants to do is leave.
- Elsewhere, Hurley is getting all prophetic on Sayid and Charlie. He tries unsuccessfully to jog Sayid's island memory with a tranquilizer gun, then tells him "If you stick with me, you'll be happy you did." Then—the return of Charlie! Since it's old school Driveshaft Charlie, he's drunk and wearing too much guyliner. Hurley tries the nice way to get Charlie to play the concert saying, "Playing this show is the most important thing you'll ever do." When Charlie refuses, he nails him with the tranq gun.
- Miles spots Sayid en route to his dad's "museum concert benefit thing" and calls Sawyer, asking him to make sure Sun is safe. Turns out Sun is fine—she and Jin are still at the hospital where Juliet (with new last name Carlson) is their doctor! When Juliet does the sonogram, Sun's island memories all come back to her, and to Jin, too! Did anyone else get goosebumps during their montage of island moments? Their English comes back too and they seem genuinely happy (no kidding, especially since Sun saw their island death. I'd be pumped, too).
- So, Juliet is Jack's wife (is there anyone who didn't see that coming?) They run into each other in the hospital after Jack assures Locke that he'll try not to kill him during surgery (eesh). Then he tells Locke "If I can fix you, that's all the peace I'll need." How prophetic.
- Hurley continues to try to convince skeptical Sayid to trust him, but Sayid resists, assuring Hurley that he's not the good guy Hurley believes him to be. Then they witness a brutal bar fight, and Sayid runs out to break it up—and runs into Shannon! All they need to do is see each other for the island memories to come flooding back. They embrace while Boone catches up with Hurley, and apparently Boone already had all of his island memory—but how? I have to admit, as annoying as Shannon is in the first two seasons, it was good to see her again.
- The concert begins and hail, hail the gang's all here. Juliet has to run back to the hospital, leaving her son with his Auntie Claire. Shocker: Claire is at table 23 along with Desmond and Kate. Backstage, Charlotte wakes Charlie and comes face to face with Daniel Faraday Widmore. No memory fireworks here just yet, at least not for Charlotte. It takes Charlie all of two seconds to spot Claire in the crowd. She looks uncomfortable, but before we can figure out if she recognizes him, she goes into labor. Kate follows her, because doesn't Kate just follow anyone? Side note: is it just me, or does it make no sense at all for Faraday and Driveshaft to be playing together?
- Kate attends to Claire, while Desmond gets a lecture from Eloise back at table 23. He tells her that he chose to ignore her advice to keep all the Losties apart, and then tells her that they're leaving. He also says that he's not taking Daniel with them, but it's unclear whether or not Eloise is happy with the news. Backstage Kate starts coaching Claire through her labor, where a much sobered up Charlie comes to help. It's all very reminiscent of Claire's birth on the island, so of course Kate starts remembering. Once she hands over Aaron, Claire's memory comes back, and all it takes is a touch of her hand to get Charlie on track too. (Another sweet montage of romantic island memories! Two points to Charlie for his waterproof mascara). Once they're all on the same page, Desmond comes back to check in on them.
- Jack's neck is bleeding again, and now we know why—it's from where Flocke almost killed him. Jack tries to head to the concert, but Locke starts to wake up from his surgery. Locke immediately says it worked and that he can feel his legs, wiggling his toes just as he did after the plane crashed. And you know what that means—memories! Locke tries to get Jack on board, but Jack resists, particularly when Locke says Jack doesn't have a son. More yoda talk: "I hope someone does for you what you just did for me."
- Jin and Sun can't help their smug smiles at Detective Ford, who still isn't clued in. They brush him off and tell him that they're safe, quipping "We'll see you there."
- On his way out of the hospital, Sawyer passes Jack in the hall and asks him where he can find food. When Jack directs him to the vending machine, Sawyer gives him a "Thanks Doc," then takes a double take at Jack. But it's who he bumps into at the vending machine that brings back the memories—Juliet! After she helps him free his candy (and sasses him a little) they touch hands and like clockwork, remember it all. (And awww, they bring up their coffee date!) They embrace, and it's still not getting old even though the reunions are coming fast at this point. So now Jack's the last man standing trying to get the gang all together (see the irony here?)
- Jack arrives at the concert, and Kate's there to inform him that he's too late. Jack gives Kate a few longing glances, before Kate and her LBD jog his memory about stealing his pen on the plane. Rather than waste time talking to him, she gets right to the point, touches his face, and tells him that she missed him. Jack still doesn't get it. But why? Everyone else does.
- Locke arrives at the church, but is still using his wheelchair. He and Ben greet each other, and Ben's already been clued in. He apologises for everything that happened, admitting that he was jealous because Locke was special and he wasn't. Locke forgives him. Ben stays he's going to stay because he still has some things to work out. Then Ben prompts Locke to ditch the chair and Locke says goodbye.
- Hurley tells Ben he was a great #2, and Ben says Hurley was a great #1. So how far back do their memories go? Kate takes Jack to the place where Jack intended to have Christian's funeral, so that they can do the funeral for real. Kate says everyone has been waiting for him to leave, but Jack still doesn't understand what's happening. Until he touches his father's coffin, that is. But when he opens it, there's nothing inside—because Christian is behind him!
On the island:
- Jack explains his "new Jacob" situation to Kate and Sawyer, and he and Kate head off to the heart of the island while Sawyer goes to find Des. His sleuthing skills aren't exactly flawless, and Flocke and Ben catch him spying almost immediately. They all realize that Des is nowhere to be found, but Flocke picks up a dog scent. We see that Rose and Bernard have been living a provincial little life in a bamboo hut, and Desmond is hiding out with them (though we still don't know how he got there). Rose is just explaining to Des that they don't want to be part of any island drama when Flocke shows up bringing exactly that. Though Rose stands by Desmond, Flocke threatens to kill Rose and Bernard unless Des goes with Flocke, and Des agrees. Then Des mysteriously mentions that he has a "hunch" that they are going to the bright light. Meanwhile, Ben's still communicating with Miles via walkie talkie.
- Miles finds Richard—and he's alive! (phew). Miles informs Richard that he got knocked out when he tried to talk to Flocke. Then Richard reveals a new plan: he and Miles should head to Hydra island and blow up the plane so Flocke can't leave. While sitting on the dock, Alpert finds a gray hair! His first! His sign of aging gives him a will to live for the first time in, well, hundreds of years. En route to the island, they find Lapidus—who's been hanging on for dear life and bobbing in the ocean. They rescue him, and Lapidus suggests that he fly them off the island instead of blowing up the plane, and leave Flocke behind. High fives all around.
- Jack's gang (complete with Sawyer) meets up with Flocke's gang, and Jack and Flocke have their first showdown since he became protector. Jack confidently tells Flocke that he plans on killing him using a "surprise," then tells Sawyer that he'll be using Des a secret weapon. When Jack, Des, and Flocke arrive at the magic stream, Des tells Jack that it doesn't matter if he goes into the light, because when he does, everyone will get to be with the ones they love. He tries to tell Jack that Jack's got a happy life in the sideways, but Jack refuses to listen saying that he tried to go back once and it didn't work.
- As Desmond is lowered into the cave of wonder, Flocke tries to trick Jack into think he's the real Locke by re-hashing the memories of when they opened the hatch and found Desmond inside. Jack isn't fooled, and says that Locke was right all along. Flocke disagrees, and Jack leaves Des to settle it, saying, "We'll just have to see which one of us is right."
- Once inside, Des heads to the bright pool and pulls out a big rock, which acts as a kind of plug. The water swirls down like a drain, leaving a volcano-like explosion in its wake. This is clearly not the result Desmond was expecting or hoping for, and Flocke tells Jack he was wrong as they hear Desmond's screams.
- As the island begins crumbling, Jack and Flocke start going at it, and—surprise!—Jack can inflict pain on Flocke. The fight escalates to epic proportions, and Flocke stabs Jack—right where we see his wound in the sideways world. As he's about to make the final plunge into Jack's neck, Kate saves the day and shoots Flocke. Jack gives him the final sendoff by literally kicking him off the island.
- The rain stops with Flocke's death, but the crumbling continues. Jack tells Kate and Sawyer to head to the boat that can take them to the plane, saying, "Whatever Desmond turns off, I need to turn it on again." Hurley decides to go with Jack, but Sawyer and Kate agree to try to get on the plane. Ben says he wants to go down with the island. Jack and Sawyer seem to call a truce and shake hands, while Kate finally decides whether she's Team Jack or Team Sawyer once and for all — planting a huge kiss on Jack and telling him that she loves him. Jack returns the sentiment. Is it super cheesy? Yup. Did I love it anyway? You know it.
- Pressed for time, Miles literally duct tapes the plane together while Lapidus tells Sawyer to hurry up if he and Kate want to get on the plane. Left with no other options, Sawyer and Kate cliff dive into the water. Washed ashore, they find Claire who finally admits that the island has made her crazytown and can't be a mother to Aaron anymore. But with a little coaxing from Kate, Claire agrees to join. Sawyer, Kate, and Claire board the plane just as it's taking off, and it's airborne!
- When they arrive at the cave of wonder, Jack tells Hurley that he's going to sacrifice himself to save the island. Hurley protests, but Jack urges him to take over his position as the keeper of the island. Once inside the cave, Jack tells Des to get out since he's got a wife and son to attend to. Jack brings the light back, and Des is pulled up by Hurley and Ben. Once they realize that Jack is gone, Hurley asks Ben to be his right hand man, and Ben accepts.
- Christian says he's dead and tells Jack that he's dead too. Christian says they are both real and that everything that has ever happened to him is real. And that everyone in the church is dead—but they all died at different times. There is no "now" but they all made a place together so that they could find each other. The most important part of Jack's life was the time he spent on the island with the rest of the Losties, and now it's time to move on. As we see this, we see that Jack is still alive, but is about to die. He limps around until Vincent finds him and we flash between the sideways world and the island. End scene on Jack's eye closing.
And now for the ending!
So the ending is obviously open to interpretation, but what's your take? I have about a billion questions, but as far as I'm concerned, the final takeaway that the Lost creators intended was that it's always been about the characters and their relationships with each other. Yes, we still don't really know why the polar bear was there or what Walt's special powers were, but the heart of the show has always been how the characters have affected each other's lives. And they are all together in the end. As for me, I think that Jack's sideways universe starts the moment he dies in the jungle, and he finally feels retribution when he's reunited with the Losties and with Kate. He did say on the island that he had nothing left in his life in LA. Jack found meaning and purpose with the island the people there, so that's what he chooses for his afterlife. His motto was "live together, die alone," and that technically proves to be true in the end—but Jack learns that he never really has to be alone, even after his death. What did you love or hate about the episode? Ready, set, break down!