‘Lost’: Movement of jah people!

“Exodus I”
Originally aired May 16, 2005

Alrighty! Here we are, kids. At the very end of revisiting Lost season one, and only 3 weeks away from the beginning of an abbreviated season four. Season Three DVDs are out, ABC is busy running promos for the new season every five minutes, the promotional pictures are up, the titles and flashback info for the first few episodes are out in the ether (but I’m not tellin’), and there’s a new “Alternate Reality Game” out there (more on that later). It’s beginning to look a lot like Lost time! And I’m trying really hard to remain calm (especially since there is now officially no chance the writers’ strike will end in time to ensure us an uninterrupted season four), but I have to confess: it’s not working. 3 WEEKS! 3 WEEKS AND ONE DAY! WOOO-HOOO!

But. Before we get ahead of ourselves. We still have a couple episodes of Lost season one to finish up: “Exodus I” & “Exodus II.” What’s interesting is the format of these episodes is different than any other episodes. We have mini-flashbacks for multiple characters. The flashbacks all take place shortly before Flight 815 takes off, and primarily take place in the airport itself. These are the last moments of our survivors’ “normal” lives, the last moments before everything will change for them forever.

Flashback #1: Michael and Walt

exodus part 1 lost michael and walt

It’s the early morning of the day of Michael and Walt’s departure from Sydney. 5:23 in the morning, in fact, and Walt and Michael should be fast asleep in their hotel room. But Walt is wide awake. And watching an episode of The Power Rangers at full blast. And as the parent of a young boy who is fond of The Power Rangers, I assure you it is not the quietest of television programs, even when the sound is turned down, which it isn’t here.

Michael asks Walt to turn down the volume a little, and Walt brats back at him that Brian lets him watch it as loud as he wants. Michael, thoroughly irritated now, growls back at Walt that he isn’t Brian, and turns the television off. But Walt is in a full-on snit, grabs Vincent and stomps out of the hotel room. When Michael follows, and Walt begins shrieking at him to get away, a man pops his head out to check on the situation. Michael assures the man that everything is fine: he’s the boy’s father. To which, predictably, Walt screams back that Michael is most certainly NOT his father.

Lost Fun Fact!: The man who sticks his head out into the hall? Steve Jenkins, as in not Scott, the guy Ethan killed, as in Sceve. Or at least, it’s the actor who played Steve.

Flashback #2: Ana-Lucia & Jack

exodus part 1 lost ana lucia and jack

Jack is hanging out at the airport bar, which is the only sensible place to hang out at any airport, for serious, chilling out after having screamed his fool head off at some ticket counter chick (poor, abused Chrissy) about putting his dead father’s body on the plane. I’d need a drink, too.

In fact, Jack made such a scene that he drove perfect strangers to drink, like this somewhat, um, pretty but masculine young woman who sits next to him and orders a tequila and tonic. (Has anyone ever had one of these? I’m a little dubious of this drink, but outside of margaritas I’m not much of a tequila drinker. Am I missing out?) Anywho.

The young woman, who’s attractive in that she’ll hang your drywall and then beat you soundly in a round of golf kinda way, begins hitting on Jack. The woman notes that Jack was screaming at the counter girl, and he explains that his father died of a heart-attack, which is interesting because this is information that he’s been a little more guarded with on the island. They introduce themselves: Jack, meet Ana-Lucia. Blah blah blah she’s drinking because she hates flying, blah back of the plane, blah blah she’s in seat 42F, he’s in seat 23B, blah. Let’s have the next drink on the plane! Will do! Yay!

Lost note: So this is how Ana-Lucia and Jack sorta meet cute, or drunk, or maybe a little bit of both. Ana-Lucia becomes a much bigger presence in season two, for better or worse depending on your feelings about the tail section survivors. What’s interesting about the scene above, of course, is that we learn in “Two for the Road” that she also meets Jack’s father in an airport bar. Christian is on his way to Sydney following his falling-out with Jack, and convinces Ana-Lucia to join him. She eventually leaves Christian’s sorry drunken self in Australia, and Jack, in turn, heads to Australia to find his father. But Christian dies. And coming full circle, Ana-Lucia and Jack, both in Australia because of Christian, meet in an airport bar. It’s interesting, but not surprising, that yet again we have the Shephard men drawn to the same woman (or were they with Sarah? Was it just Jack’s active and jealous imagination? Another Lost mystery….), in that ol’ Oedipal struggle.

dharma wine

Also, I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again: it’s a shame that Michelle Rodriguez (and Cynthia Watros and Daniel Dae Kim) didn’t hire a driver while in Hawaii. They really need to limit the DHARMA Initiative booze around that set.

Flashback #3: Sawyer

exodus part 1 lost sawyer flashback

Unsurprisingly, Sawyer spent his morning before the flight in a police station. In fact, it seems he spent the last three days before the flight in jail. See, Sawyer got into something of a bar fight with the Honorable Warren Truss, Australia’s Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Forestry. And while Australians are rather pugilistic, they still frown upon Americans beating up their public officials. Go figure.

Anyways, Sawyer is meeting with a police officer, who is realllly unhappy with Sawyer (Sawyer broke the mug the officer’s kids made for him), and isn’t falling for Sawyer’s shtick. The officer pulls out a file on Sawyer, and begins rattling off Sawyer’s numerous crimes, calls Sawyer by his real name, James, and then informs Sawyer that he’s being deported back to the United States. And Sawyer’s to never set foot in Australia again. Bye, Sawyer!

exduse part 1 james ford file

Lost note #1: The file. Sawyer’s smugness fades when the officer pulls out that folder — the officer knows who Sawyer is, and this disarms Sawyer a little. Which is very reminiscent of the way Ben and Juliet use the information they’ve gathered on the survivors to throw them off-balance. The Others (who have imprisoned Jack, Kate, and Sawyer) know the survivors, just as the officer (who has imprisoned Sawyer) knows Sawyer.

Lost note #2: The officer threatens Sawyer that he’s not to ever set foot in his country again. A similar sentiment is expressed by Jin to Jae Lee in “The Glass Ballerina” and by the Thai men to Jack in “Stranger in a Strange Land.” This issue of deportation, or of being forbidden to re-enter a country is an interesting theme, and is something of an allusion to Adam and Eve’s expulsion from the Garden of Eden, which we’ve discussed once or twice, I think …

Lost Fun Fact!: The Honorable Warren Truss is a real man, and was, indeed, the Australian Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries, and Forestry, with a seat in the Cabinet, from July 1999 to June 2005.

Flashback #4: Kate

exodus part 1 lost kate and mars

Unlike Sawyer, who apparently was given an airline ticket and sent on his merry way, Kate was being escorted out of Australia by the marshal. The marshal is traveling with a number of guns (5 to be exact), as we learned in “Whatever the Case May Be,” and as such he has to have a little pre-flight chat with the Australian authorities. The official questions why the marshal is traveling with 5 guns and asks about the toy plane. This, in turn, sets the marshal off on one of his jerky marshal rants. The marshal tells the whole story about Kate getting her childhood sweetheart killed, and how while she was on the run she would call the marshal to taunt him, so he hid the plane in a safety deposit box in a New Mexico bank, which she promptly robbed but only for the plane because that’s the only thing she really cares about. But, see, then the marshal is the one who taunts Kate, asking her what the childhood sweetheart’s name was, which of course, he knows perfectly well, and Kate FLIPS OUT and jumps the marshal, which is exactly what he wanted her to do because he’s a jerk and so he elbows her in the face and then turns to the Australian official and explains that this is why he’s traveling with 5 guns. The end.

Flashback #5: Shannon & Boone

exodus part 1 lost shannon and boone

The airport. Shannon is doing some sort of word puzzle. Enter Sayid. He asks her to watch his bag while he runs into a store. Absently, Shannon agrees. Exit Sayid. Enter Boone. No first-class seats. WHINE! SHANNON DOESN’T WANT TO SIT NEXT TO A CRYING BABY FOR 15 HOURS! WHINE! Boone suggests that Shannon shouldn’t have yelled at the gate agent. WHINE! Boone grumbles that one day (IRONY ALERT) she’ll appreciate all he does for her. WHINE! On an escalator, Shannon threatens to get Boone kicked off the flight, asserting that he doesn’t know what she’s capable of. Shannon stops an airport officer and reports that an Arab man left his bag in the chairs downstairs. Exit officers. Shannon smiles smugly at Boone. End scene.

Flashback #6: Sun & Jin

exodus part 1 lost sun and jin

While they were waiting for their flight, Jin and Sun decided to have a little snack at the airport food court. Sun returns with food for the two of them and places a napkin on Jin’s lap. This little gesture raises the ire of an American couple nearby who snicker at the Memoirs of Geisha-ness of it all, assuming that Sun and Jin don’t speak English.

Ahhh … the presumptuous stupidity of Americans. When the American husband notes that “their” divorce rate is 20 times lower than “ours,” Sun knocks her coffee onto Jin’s lap, sending him rushing to the bathroom. Bye Jin! Hope that stain comes out!

Well, that’s what the kids were up to right before they got on the plane, but what are they up to on the island?

Being menaced by crazy French ladies with guns, that’s what.

Walt wakes up one morning to go relieve himself, and while in the woods a bit of the way, he catches sight of Danielle making her way towards the beach camp, fully armed. Alarmed, Walt wakes everyone up, and the villagers gather around Danielle, pitchforks tines out. Sayid, the voice of reason, urges the survivors to remain calm and asks Le Nutjob why she’s there. THE OTHERS ARE COMING, she says, and then everyone FREAKS OUT.

Danielle tells her story:

See, she and her team crashed on the island 16 years ago. And Danielle was 7 months pregnant, which, once again I have to note, would be terrible. But you know what would be worse? Having to deliver your baby by yourself on a terrifying island, like Danielle did. (Actually: this would be worse.) A week after Danielle had her baby, there was a pillar of black smoke off in the distance, and that night, The Others came and took her daughter (DAUGHTER?!?) Alex. And now The Others are coming for the Flight 815 survivors. And the only options the survivors have are run, hide, or die.

Oh, and by the way, there were 6 people in Danielle’s team, which I suspect is important.

Jack, however, is skeptical about all this — what with Danielle being a complete nutter and all — and tells Locke that they need to focus instead on the raft and making sure it launches. And towards that effort, Jack rounds up a bunch of Redshirts and puts them to work doing Michael’s bidding. Gee, thanks, Jack.

But the raft makes progress, and the group nearly gets it to the water when, oops!, the mast breaks off. Michael immediately glares at Sawyer, and the two of them start bickering when Walt notices a pillar of black smoke in the distance. RUT ROH!!

exodus part 1 lost black smoke

Guess Le Nutty isn’t so crazy after all.

Jack, Locke, Sayid, and Hurley ask Danielle how many Others she’s talking about, and she’s like, that’s not what matters. What matters is how many people you have to protect. Where you gonna put them all? BZZZZT! That’s the sound of the little lightbulb over Locke’s head that turns on, and he leads everyone to the hatch.

exodus part 1 lost on the hatch

Danielle is stunned when she sees the hatch, and claims she’s never seen it before (really? 16 years on the island, and never?). There’s some discussion about whether or not they should attempt to open it, or even if all 40 some-odd people will fit inside, but whatever. Locke wants to know where Danielle got her dynamite that she used to blowed-up her bunker that one time.

Dynamite. Black Rock. Dark Territory, Danielle says ominously. Super! say the survivors. Sounds great! When can we go?

So Jack puts on his I’m-A-Leader! pants, and heads back to the beach where he announces to the survivors that everything is TOTALLY COOL, and he’s TOTALLY GOT A PLAN, and they need to not TOTALLY FREAK, but he’s not going to tell them what this plan is. But they needn’t worry their pretty little heads with it: all they need to know is that he’s heading into the jungle, they need to get Michael’s raft launched, and then everyone should head back to the caves for a big happy campfire. Kthxbai!

But Dr. Arzt, the dude that warned Michael that he needed to get the raft on water STAT, is all: Yo, I know what you’re doing with the dynamite and the hatch and the whatnot, and I want in, ‘cuz you fools will blow yourselves up if you don’t have my help. And because for some reason when season one was originally airing, the viewers were complaining that not enough attention was being paid to the Redshirts (what?! Who cares, right?), Jack agrees to let this guy who we barely know comes along on their little expedition to the Black Rock. Whatever.

So. In the meantime, Michael and Jin are doing the Han Solo/Chewbacca thing where they are speaking different languages but understand one another as they attempt to repair the broken mast (They’re doing the Han & Chewy thing quite literally: Michael even says at one point “No, no, no. This one goes there, that one goes there,” which is an exact quote from the Empire Strikes Back when they are repairing the Millennium Falcon. You can send my Geek Award care of the Chronicle. Thanks.). And Sawyer really wants to help, but Michael’s all: thanks but no thanks, Cletus.

So Sawyer heads out to the jungle on his own, strips off his shirt for all the ladies out there, and begins chopping down a tree on his own. Jack enters, makes a crack about Sawyer being a lumberjack in the real world (again, what’s with all the lumberjack references? I don’t get it … ), and then shockingly gives Sawyer one of the guns for the raft trip.

Sawyer realizes that this is goodbye, since Jack will be in the jungle retrieving dynamite when the raft finally launches, and as Jack turns to leave, Sawyer stops him. He then tells Jack about meeting this drunk guy at a bar who was a doctor and his son was a doctor and that the dad doctor was all sad because he had a big fight with the son doctor, and the dad doctor knew it was his fault, but couldn’t bring himself to tell the son doctor that and blah blah blah the sad dad doctor wishes he could pick up the phone and call the son doctor and tell him that he’s a great doctor and he’s really proud of him and loves him, but he doesn’t call him and Sawyer left the bar and the end.

And then Jack cries because that’s what Dr. McWeepy does.

bachelor in paradise bip always be crying cam

But when he’s done crying, he’s confronted by Kate who wants to come along on the dynamite expedition because he doesn’t want to have to say goodbye to Sawyer whom she’s still pretty ticked at after the whole passport/revealing she’s a fugitive thing, and Jack’s like, cool.

So then Jack and the rest of the group that’s heading into the jungle heads over to the raft group to say their goodbyes and to add to the messages in a bottle that Charlie is collecting for the Rafties to take with them. Bye! Good luck!

And Locke, Jack, Hurley, Kate, Danielle, and Arzt head into the jungle. Somewhere along the line, Locke notices some scratch marks on Danielle’s arm and asks her about it, and she’s like: it was a bush. But Locke totally doesn’t believe her, yo.

They keep marching into the jungle, but when they hit the Dark Territory, Dr. I-Wanna-Go-Along-Too Arzt suddenly loses his nerve, and announces that’s he’s going back to camp. See ya later, Captain Sissypants!

But the group isn’t in the Dark Territory for long before Arzt comes screaming back like a little girl. Here comes the smoke monster! Run! But not really, ha ha, it turned around. Danielle explains that it’s a “security system” for the island. Which, you know, is a little vague. But whatevs.

the black rock exodus part 1 lost

They keep heading into the jungle, and then Danielle suddenly stops. There here! At the Black Rock! Which, whaddya know, isn’t a rock at all, but a 19th-century ship of some sort, stranded in the middle of the jungle. Huh.

Back at the beach: Sawyer returns from his lumberjacking with the perfect mast, and now they’re ready to roll. Or float. Or something.

exodus part 1 lost walt and vincen

Sniffle Moment #1: Walt gives Vincent to Shannon, because Vincent helped him when his mom died, and Walt thinks that Shannon could use someone to talk to now that Boone is gone.

And Sayid managed to put together both a radar and a radio for the raft, but the battery is limited, so Sayid warns that they need to use it sparingly. Similarly, they only have one flare in the flare gun, so, again, they need to be judicious with how they use it…

exodus part 1 lost jin and sun

Sniffle Moment #2: Sun gives Jin a notebook filled with Korean translations of English words spelled out phonetically for him so that he can communicate with Sawyer and Michael on the raft. Jin explains that he feels like he has to go on the raft so he can save her. He urges her to stay with Jack, because he will keep her safe. But Sun wonders who will keep Jin safe. Aww … they love each other and they are sorry.

exodus part 1 lost vincent ocean

Alright! Time to head out, kids! Everybody hugs goodbye, they get on the raft and shove off, and Sniffle Moment #3: Vincent furiously begins paddling after the raft as Walt yells at him to go back and I’M CRYING LIKE A FOOL.

Seriously. What’s my problem? I know how this all ends (not well) and yet, here I am blubbering all over again like it’s 2005. Geez.

O.K. y’all. Here’s my dilemma. This is obviously Part I of a two-part episode, and I chose to break it up. Why? In part, because Part II is two hours long, so if I recapped them together, that’s three hours to write about, and I lost my previous editor (Bye, Olga! Good luck! You were great!) and have a new editor (Hang in there, Bobby, we’re almost done!) WHO DOESN’T WATCH LOST (I know, crazy, right?) and I thought giving him a 15,000-word entry for his first effort would be way too much. But the problem is, this is only part of the story, and it’s difficult to really dig in and do all the analysis and blah blah blah without the entire story, you know?

Also, the flashbacks aren’t really chock full of anything worth talking about. Not the way they usually are. And there’s very little relationship between the flashbacks and island events. That is aside from some heavy-handed “Wow, look at how much they’ve changed” comparisons, which we can discuss more next time. What is interesting to me are the settings in the flashbacks and how they relate to the events on the island.

Yeah, that’s right, we’re talking about liminality again, kids. Consider: all the flashbacks take place in “temporary” locations. Michael and Walt are in a hotel; Jack is in an airport (airport bar to be exact); Kate is in the airport; Sawyer is in jail; Sun and Jin, Shannon and Boone, all in the airport. These are all places “in between” places — not a final destination, and certainly not home. They are on the verge of making a journey, but they haven’t quite left, not yet. Similarly, in this episode in particular, the survivors now on the island, are on the verge of making a journey: Jack’s group’s destination is the hatch, and the raft group’s destination is, hopefully, towards rescue. But they’re not there yet, they are all in liminal states of being.

(Speaking of liminality: was I the only one who caught the Twilight Zone marathon on the SciFi Network over New Years? Somehow, I think in this group I wasn’t alone. And while it’s totally obvious, and I know it, and WHATEVER, it still is so striking to me what an influence that show had on Lost. Like, I caught the episode “It’s a Good Life” this time around, which is the one that they remade in The Twilight Zone: The Movie with the kid who can do stuff with his mind and controls everyone around him. The original? SO MUCH CREEPIER than the movie. And? Totally Walt. Alright. Done being all parenthetical. Swear.)

Hey! You know what else is a story about a group of people who are stuck “in between” places? The Book of Exodus in the Old Testament. Quick (not really) Bible lesson: so towards the end of Genesis, we learn the story of Joseph, son of Jacob and Rachel, and how his good-for-nothing brothers sold him into slavery because they were totally jealous that Jacob loved him best of all.

So Joseph’s hanging in Egypt, and impresses the Pharaoh with his mad dope dream interpretation skillz, and economically, things are going really good for Egypt. Sadly for the Israelites, things weren’t going so great for them, and there was this big famine, so Jacob sent his good-for-nothing sons over to Egypt to try to buy some wheat. And guess who they had to buy it from? Joseph. Right, so he knows who they are, but they don’t know who he is, and there are some shenanigans with his younger brother Benjamin, but then all is forgiven, and Joseph tells his family that they should totally move to Egypt since there’s no famine there, and they’re like Yay! And the Pharaoh, who really likes Joseph, is so cool with Joseph’s family moving to Egypt that he gives them a bunch of land.

The love between the Jews and the Egyptians doesn’t last, though. The famine ends over in the Promised Land, but the Israelites are like, I guess we could go back, but it’s really far to walk, and we’re already here, so let’s just stay. Thing is, the new Pharaoh, who wasn’t buds with Joseph, is a mite bit concerned about having this giant and growing foreign population hanging out in his country, so he enslaves them and puts them to work building his pyramids and then orders all the male children to be put to death. Which is uncool.

Moses, basket in the Nile, Egyptian princess, rescue. Raised as an Egyptian prince, kills an Egyptian guard. Pharaoh mad. RUN AWAY!!

While in exile, Moses gets a message from a burning bush who tells Moses to demand the Israelites’ release from the Pharaoh. Oh, and Aaron, Moses’ brother, will help him.

LET MY PEOPLE GO! NO NO NO! Plagues! Passover! Parting of the Red Sea!

And then the real fun begins. The Exodus.

God leads the Israelites back to the Promised Land in the form of a pillar of cloud during the day, pillar of fire by night (cool!), and provides them food and water when they begin whining about being hungry. God announces that the Israelites will be his chosen people, and they’re like, yeah, cool, whatever. God gives Moses the Ten Commandments on the top of Mt. Sinai, and some VERY SPECIFIC instructions on how to build the tabernacle. And while Moses is up at the top of the mountain hanging out with God, what do Aaron and the Israelites do? They make themselves a calf made out of gold.

This REALLY ticks off God, who is like: enough with you ingrates already. Moses comes down off the mountain and sees what the Israelites did, and he gets all angry and smashes the ten commandments, and yells at his people, and then stomps back up the mountain to go apologize to God for the Israelites being a bunch of impatient and unfaithful morons, and God forgives them and gives Moses new tablets with the ten commandments on them. And this time when Moses comes back down the mountain, the Israelites have managed to behave themselves and not craft any idolatrous sculptures. And they totally listen to Moses and build the tabernacle and then get back to the business of wandering around in the desert. The end.

(My source material, in case you were interested.)

Alright. Sorry about the length of that, and I’m sure y’all are familiar with the story, but I wanted to make sure that all the salient points were mentioned. Notice, the Israelites don’t make it back to the Promised Land at the end of Exodus. In fact, at the very end of the book, only two months have passed since they left Egypt. Two months. They wander for 40 years. The Book of Exodus is all about being in a liminal state. The Israelites have left their home, and now come hell or literally high water, they’re trying to make their way back.

But they aren’t there yet.

Similarly, the Losties are in a strange land, being menaced by the locals, and they just want to go home. Exodus comes from the Latin for “departure,” and this is the first step in the Losties’ attempt to depart this island. But, as we know, it won’t be their last. We also know now (but not at the time of the original airing) that, like the Pharaoh who for some unfathomable reason insists that the Israelites not leave Egypt, Benry has no intention of allowing the Losties to go home. Why, though? Why such stubbornness about allowing people who have caused them nothing but trouble to go home already? It can’t merely be for the slave labor (Benry puts Kate and Sawyer on runway duty; the Pharaoh uses the Israelites to build his pyramids), can it?

burning bush

We also have some lovely and subtle allusions to the biblical Book of Exodus in this episode. When Locke asks Danielle how she came about the scratches on her arm–her answer? A bush. The burning bush is, of course, one of the more indelible images of the biblical tale. Interestingly, it is also Danielle who explains that the day before The Others came to take her baby away, she saw “a pillar of black smoke 5 kilometers inland.”

God is described in Exodus 14:24 as appearing as a pillar of cloud and fire and looking down on the Egyptians and throwing them into confusion when they were following the Israelites into the Red Sea. So, it’s interesting to me that the two physical manifestations of God that are specifically mentioned in the Book of Exodus are referenced in this episode, and both related to Danielle. (And even more interestingly, both the bush and the pillar of smoke are SPOILER ALERT: lies that Danielle has crafted. The scratches, we learn in season two, are not from a bush, but from Claire when Danielle tried to help her escape from The Others. And the pillar of smoke is from a fire that Danielle started as a means to make the survivors think The Others were coming for the baby.)

But let’s talk about the “pillar” of smoke for a moment longer. In this episode, it looms over the survivors, threatening them, and pushing them to act. It’s Danielle’s warning coupled with the smoke signal that drive the survivors to hastily make plans to get out of Dodge. It’s such a great use of language for Danielle to use the word “pillar” in describing the smoke, not only because of the allusion to the Book of Exodus, but also in terms of symbolism. Pillars represent stability and structure, certainly, but they also represent an axis mundi, or a sacred axis. A connection from the spiritual world to the physical one. This fits in nicely with all the other axis mundi/navel of the earth (or omphalos) symbolism that the show has used over and over again.

pillar of fire exodus

As discussed above, The Abrahamic God appeared to the Israelites as a pillar of fire, and apparently one of the symbols of Buddha is a pillar of fire as well. It’s a symbol of enlightenment and the connection between the spiritual and the corporeal. Interestingly enough, what we have on the island is a pillar of smoke, which is a little different. Smoke signals were obviously used by Native Americans to communicate over long distances, which is essentially what is happening on the island: a message is being communicated to the survivors by “The Others.” And smoke, as opposed to fire, is a symbol of obscurity, mystery, duplicity, the hidden. The truth is being kept form the survivors, just as it was kept from Danielle so many years ago.

Danielle, Danielle, Danielle. Did you notice when Danielle explains that there were 6 people on her team? It’s funny, with all the attention and focus on The Numbers on the show, 6 wasn’t one of them. And now, thanks to the ambiguous promos, every time a 6 is mentioned, I get all goosebumpy. It was discussed in the comments a little in the last entry, but for those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, rewatch the short promo. We’ll wait.

Alright, did ya see it? The 6? Yeah, so there’s lots of speculation about what it means (do 6 people get off the island? are 6 people coming? 6 as in 6 seasons? 6 people will die? WHAT IS IT??), and I have no earthly idea, yo.

But what I can do is point out the interesting references to 6 on the show: 6 people on Danielle’s team; 6 DHARMA stations; they crashed 6 hours into the flight; numerous references to 6 months (how long Juliet is supposed to work for Mittelos; how long both Kevin and Kate and Sun and Jin will have to wait to go on their respective honeymoons; how long Sawyer was with Cassidy); Sawyer rips Cassidy off for 600 grand; The MacCuctheon scotch that Widmore refuses Desmond is 60 years old; Walt needs double 6s to win a game of backgammon — and gets them. This is by no means a comprehensive list, of course. And somehow, like with The Numbers, I think the individual instances of 6 being used on the show isn’t what’s important.

So, instead, let’s discuss the symbolism of the number 6. 6 represents harmony, balance, and equilibrium, and often is depicted with two inverted triangles: which, you might note, is the Star of David. Those of you who have read your Da Vinci Code might remember that the symbol is made of two triangles; one pointing up (male), and one pointing down (female). Together, they represent completeness, and sometimes the human soul.

The Pythagoreans, who were really into numbers, believed that 6 represented luck — think of those dice in Walt and Locke’s Backgammon game. Dice have 6 sides, representing stability, truth, and chance. In the Chinese oracular Book of Changes or I-Ching (which make up the DHARMA logo) each hexagram is made up of 6 lines (broken or unbroken), which then are read and interpreted accordingly. It’s all over my head, goodness knows, but it’s based on the binary Yin/Yang, Fixed/Moving, Changing/Unchanging system, that represents both luck and stability all at once.

In The Book of Genesis, and apparently in older Sumerian religions, creation took place over 6 days. And then there is the business of the number 7 being a sacred number for God, and because 6 falls short of being 7, it represents Man who falls short of God. And, of course, we can’t discuss 6 without mentioning 666, the Number of the Beast, Apocalypse, End Times, all that (and which has been mentioned on the show before, albeit subtlety).

So. I don’t know what the 6 will physically represent on the show, but I can’t shake the feeling that whatever it is, it isn’t going to be good.

What do you guys think?

This is not the best transition, but I wanted to encourage y’all to keep watching the mobisodes on abc.com. It’s interesting, I had somewhat forgotten about the sexual tension between Sun and Michael that was palpable when the show first aired. Somehow, upon rewatching season one, it seemed diminished to me, perhaps because I know what happens later to the characters. There is a mobisode, “Buried Secrets,” that explores the relationship a smidge more, and gives greater poignancy to Sun and Michael’s awkward goodbye at the end of “Exodus I.”

Also? Watch “Room 23.” I’m not going to say any more … just … go watch it.

Now, the new Alternate Reality Game: find815.com (actually, technically, you are supposed to start here: flyoceanicair.com.) I love ARGs! And this one is pretty well done (even if I am stuck on one level — stupid transistors … grrr… ). The story is about Sam Thomas, an employee of Oceanic Airlines, who lost his flight attendant girlfriend on flight 815, and he’s demanding answers. Go. Click around. It’s very well-produced, not nearly as involved as The Lost Experience, and so far, fairly easy to navigate.

O.K. and one last note: hat tip to my younger sister and fellow Lost devotee for this one. Watch the longer promo again. Pay special attention to the last moments.

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Catch it? The reflection in the water? It’s not the mountains, but some sort of skyline (Los Angeles, prolly.)? COOOOL. CAN’T WAIT. 22 days and counting!

Lost originally aired on ABC and is now available to stream on Hulu and IMDb.

This post originally appeared on the Hearst site Tubular.

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