Live-Blogging the Lost Series Finale: The End

-by Amy Yen

This is it, folks. End of the line, everybody off. These are my live thoughts as I’m watching & I’ll possibly a wrap-up post later if I can see through my tears later.

8:59 – Previously on Lost…yeah, right. Nice try. And seriously, if you really want to know, you should have watched ABC’s 45-hour Lost weekend retrospective event thing. I know I did. (Yeah, cause I really needed to see Sun’s anguished scream when the freighter blew up one more time to get me in the crying mood.)

9:00 – We open on a plane. All of our beloved characters, on the Island where we knew them & in the sideways universe that we still don’t understand. Desmond signs for Christian Shephard’s remains. “No one can tell you why you’re here, Kate. My name is Desmond Hume. And even though you don’t realize it, I’m your friend. And as to what I want? I want to leave.”

9:06 – On the Island, Jack says he doesn’t feel any different, but he is. “It’s called the heart of the Island. It’s a light.” It still sounds kind of ridiculous. The rest of the Candidates note Jacob kind of sucks at leaving final instructions. He’s no Daniel Faraday, is he? “It’s kind of true, dude, he’s worse than Yoda.” Oh, LOL, Hurley. I’m going to miss you & your Star Wars references SO MUCH.

9:07 – Sawyer splits off from the group to go find Desmond, which is obviously a terrible idea. So, let’s review the groups. Jack’s group (the Jacob-ites) is Jack, Kate & Hurley. The Man in Black has Ben in tow. Sawyer is on his own. Richard is presumably dead, although I demand to see a body. Desmond, Miles & Claire are unaccounted for. Wow, is that all that’s left? That’s depressing.

9:11 – In the flashsideways, Hurley goes to retrieve a heavily mascara-ed & drunk Charlie Pace for the concert. He looks fairly ridiculous & blows Hurley off. And then! Something awesome happens! Hurley tranqs Charlie & kidnaps him with Sayid! Okay, all-knowing Hurley is B-A.

9:13 – Sawyer stupidly gets caught watching the Man in Black by Ben. Luckily, he quickly overpowers Ben & lets him go, but not before giving up the crucial bit of information about Jacob’s baton-passing ritual being complete. Ben is somehow surprised that the Man in Black meant the whole “destroying the Island” thing literally. Oh, Ben. “I’m sorry if I left out the part about the Island being on the bottom of the ocean.” Hey, how does he know that?

9:15 – OMG! Rose & Bernard (& Vincent) are the ones who rescued Desmond. Well, it wouldn’t be a finale without them, although, to be honest, I was perfectly happy with where they ended their storyline last year. “Well, we built this place in ’75 & lived here a couple of years. And then, the sky lit up again.” Don’t you hate it when that happens?

9:16 – Well, if there was any doubt the Man in Black was pure evil, it’s gone now. Don’t you dare touch one hair on Rose & Bernard’s awesome heads. Desmond has no choice but to go with him, but again, he doesn’t sound particularly upset by it.

9:17 – Desmond knows about the “very bright light.” As we guessed, the walkie-talkies Ben & Miles both have come back into play now, as Miles has found Richard in the jungle! ALIVE! YAY! Richard Alpert LIVES! Remember when that used to be an assumption? Anyway, Richard still has his eye on the prize. To the Hydra, Batman!

9:22 – In the flashsideways, Miles arrives at the concert (alone…where is his supposed girlfriend? I was thinking it’d be cool if it was Naomi or someone) & immediately spots fugitive Sayid. Which is how our friend James Ford enters the action. Miles gets James to check on the living witness, who Sayid the mass murderer would presumably be after, Sun. Awesomely, James calls Miles “Enos,” the nickname he called him in Dharmaville.

9:23 – In the hospital, a doctor comes to check on Sun’s baby. It’s Juliet! Oh, YAY! “Dr. Carlson,” actually. When Juliet does the ultrasound, Sun has her flash of remembrance to the first time this happened. And then we see a truly wonderfully complete flash-timeline of their history together, minus horrible gut-wrenching death! Suddenly, Jin sees it too! OMG! Juliet tells them everything’s great & suddenly, they both remember they speak English. Juliet looks hilariously befuddled as they tell her that the baby is a girl & her name is Ji Yeon. Awwwww. I looooved that.

9:29 – Island present, we rejoin Sawyer as he catches back up with Team Jack. He catches them up on what he’s learned (blah blah blah, the Man in Black is going to destroy the Island) & Jack is totally Jacob-level calm about everything. “We’re all going to the same place. And then it ends.” One way or another, right? What this scene does accomplish is getting us another glorious crane shot of Hawaii canyon. Remember the golf game? Man, that was long ago.

9:30 – In the flashsideways, Jack is prepping Locke for surgery. “I’ll see you on the other side,” he tells John. Locke asks after Christian’s missing coffin & Jack says it might be here by now. “I hope that brings you some peace.”

9:32 – Island present, Miles points out to Richard that he has his first gray hair! …I am seriously in awe how how wonderful this silly little revelation is. Richard stares at the hair & starts to smile. Another one of Jacob’s gifts. “I think I realized I want to live,” he says, like he told Jacob all those years ago. What is it that people say? Part of what makes life significant is dying? I can’t tell you how pleased I am that they didn’t kill Richard off in the last episode like we originally feared. He’s too great of a character for so trivial a death.

9:32 – In the water, they come across a dead body. And a live one! AHAHAHA!! It’s Frank Lapidus!! AHAHAHAHAHA!!!

9:34 – I’m so happy to see him, it’s ridiculous. Again, it’s a case of too awesome of a character to go that easily. I kind of love Miles in this scene also, I like to think he realizes that he & Lapidus are the only ones left from that freighter. Frank makes a great point. “In case you didn’t notice, I’m a pilot.” And a hell of a good one, too, Frank!

9:34 – Oh, isn’t this awkward. Team Jack & Team MiB (in as much as there is one) come face to face. Kate immediately starts shooting recklessly, almost killing Ben & Desmond but obviously not Flocke, who tells her to save her bullets. The Man in Black marches straight up to Jack, the recognition clear in his eyes. “Jacob being who he is, I expected to be a little more surprised. You’re sort of the obvious choice, don’t you think?” Heh. Jack tells he chose this. He’s very calm now, he’s got that Jacob-like glint in his eye, the “I know something you don’t” look, except that I’m not entirely sure that he does. He tells the Man in Black that he’ll go with him to the place by the bamboo fields (did MiB know that’s where it is? If not, way to give it away, JACK), where the Man in Black THINKS he’s going to destroy the Island. But actually? Jack’s going to kill him. How? “It’s a surprise.” Boo! Hiss!

9:39 – Flashsideways, Jack runs into Juliet & they address each other as “Doctor” & it’s actually kind of a lovely, friendly vibe between them. Like they’re the kind of ex’s who would be better friends after the break-up then they ever were together. Jack gives her the tickets for the concert, she hands them off to David, who joins them. Obviously, Juliet is his mom, Jack’s ex. Jack suggests David ask “Aunt Claire” to the concert, which gets us another step closer to the big reunion. As Juliet & David leave, they pass James Ford in the elevator, on the way to check on Sun, & OMG, my heart is seriously pounding, I want them to meet so badly. I just realized the connection like five seconds before that happened, but it looks like they’re not due for their flash of remembrance quite yet. This is so cool, how the pieces are falling into place.

9:40 – Island present, we learn that Jack actually still doesn’t really have a plan, he just has a hunch that Desmond is a weapon against the Man in Black. Sawyer & I agree, “That’s a hell of a long con, Doc.” Con isn’t the word I would have chosen (if you’re wondering, I would have chosen “dumb assumption”), but I’m willing to go with it for poetic symmetry’s sake.

9:40 – The merged group reaches the bamboo fields & the Man in Black makes the decision that it the rest of the former Candidates & Ben should stay behind. Jack is again very willing to just go along with what’s going on & I keep wondering, for real now, what’s the plan? Hope it just happens to go his way instead of the Man in Black’s? I really dislike this plan. Can’t we be a little more proactive?

9:41 – The Man in Black, Jack & Desmond reach the steam by the Cave o’ Light. So, wait a sec. If the Man in Black hadn’t found Jack, would he have been able to find this place? Because he couldn’t before. He searched for 30 years & couldn’t find it himself, right? Did that change after he became Smokey? Anyway, it’s time for Desmond to make his “Vote Flashsideways” pitch, as Jack ties one end of a rope around his waist & the Man in Black ties the other to a tree. It’s all very surreal that Jack & Des are just going along with this. Des tells Jack about this other place, where they can be with their loved ones. I imagine Jack would just assume he’s talking about heaven here, except for that Des brings up that he sat next to him on Oceanic 815. Jack doesn’t believe yet. “What happened, happened,” he tells Des. “All of this matters.”

9:47 – In the flashsideways, Hurley & Sayid are sitting around in Hurley’s highly conspicuous bright yellow Hummer that LAPD detective Miles Straume totally saw earlier in the day containing a fugitive wanted for four homicides. Um, how have they not caught them yet? Sayid wants to know what the hell is going on. Hurley says he can’t tell him, there are rules. Whose rules this time? Hurley says he trusts Sayid. He thinks he’s a good guy. Remember when he first said this to him in the pilot? Lovely callback. “You can’t let other people tell you what you are, dude. You have to decide that for yourself.”

9:49 – Hurley & Sayid witness a fight develop in the streets. A familiar voice yells, “Leave my brother alone!” Oh, my GOD. Seriously? A girl with blonde hair gets knocked down & Sayid is out of the car. When he touches the girl’s elbow…obviously, it’s Shannon. This flash of remembrance is the least powerful, since their relationship was the least developed since Shannon got killed so early & plus, they’ve spent all this time telling us that Sayid’s true love is Nadia. Which is not to say that it’s not nice to see Shannon, just to complete the circle. They say each other’s names & kiss for a while. Boone comes up to the Hummer & we see that he’s in on it with Hurley. He actually went & got Shannon from Australia. But, who was Boone’s constant (I guess the term would be)?

9:50 – Island present, Ben gets a call on the walkie-talkie, which is the best walkie-talkie I’ve ever seen & can work all the way from Hydra Island. It’s Miles, who tells Ben’s group the plan to fly the plane the hell off the Island. He tells them to get over there, but then, Claire shows up & she’s in a shoot-now-ask-questions-later kind of mood. Kate freaks out when she hears that Claire’s there. Richard convinces her they’re just trying to get away from Flocke & go home. “Will you come with us, Claire?” Claire looks kind of devastated & I don’t really understand why. She says no. Again, why, exactly? For once, you’re not being abandoned!

9:51 – Back with Team Bright Light. Jack & the Man in Black go to lower Desmond down to the light, where he knows to “go where the light’s brightest.” Flocke gets nostalgic about how this is so very Hatch-like. “If there was button down there to push, we could argue about whether or not to push it.” Heh. Jack isn’t fooled. “You’re not John Locke.” He tells the Man in Black Locke was right about everything. The Man in Black begs to differ & says Jack will see that when the Island drops to the bottom of the ocean. The rope goes slack, Des has hit bottom. The two of them look over the edge & believe so sincerely that each of them is right, that I have to believe that neither of them are.

9:58 – Flashsideways, David & Claire & Juliet are in line to get into the concert when Juliet gets a page from the hospital. She leaves David with Claire. Backstage, Charlotte, looking especially gorgeous, wakes an unconscious Charlie up for the concert. Charlie groans that he was “shot by a fat man.” Heh. Behind her, Charlotte sees a man tying a tie, it’s Daniel! Daniel explains who he is & who Charlie the stumbling drunk is & introduces himself as Daniel Widmore. He & Charlotte shake hands, but sadly, there is no flash of remembrance. Aw, seriously, why not? If Sayid & freaking Shannon get one, I really want one for the two of them.

10:00 – OMG I can’t believe we’re just now reaching hour 2. I’m on page 5 of this blog, I just want to point out. David arrives at Table 23, which Desmond is sitting already. With Kate. Who sees Claire! The two of them are dumbfounded, but don’t touch because the concert is starting. Dr. Pierre Chang is on the stage! He introduces Daniel Widmore & Driveshaft. In the audience, Charlotte & Miles are sitting next to each other & clapping. Daniel starts playing & Charlie puts on his guitar & looks out into the audience & sees Claire, that mysterious blonde. She feels the baby kick & gets up to leave. Kate chases after.

10:02 – Flashsideways, Desmond passes bones before going into the light. Don’t go into the light! There’s rock in the center. Desmond screams as he wades toward it. There’s the electromagnetic sound effect, which is also the flash sound effect & it becomes louder as Desmond reaches the center & pulls up the rock. The light flashes & the water he’s in drains toward the center, like going down the drain. The light dies. Total darkness. Are you sure this was a good idea, Jack?? ARE YOU SURE??!?

10:04 – Desmond looks around, this doesn’t look like LA X. Where the rock used to be, where all the light went, there’s now glowing red. Des starts to scream “NO!” The Man in Black stands, triumphant. “Looks like you were wrong,” he says. “Goodbye, Jack.” He heads out of the cave as the ground shakes. Outside, it’s bleak, the creek is gone. The shaking stops though & Jack runs out behind him & tackles him, punches him once. The Man in Black looks in wonder at the blood on his hands. “Looks like you were wrong too,” Jack tells him & starts to finish him off, but the Man in Black grabs a rock & knocks him down, but doesn’t attempt to kill him. These guys kind of suck at being mortal enemies. Jack is down for the count & the Man in Black flees. He only looks back once.

10:08 – Flashsideways, Claire is struggling. Kate finds her. The baby is so coming. Back in the concert, Driveshaft & Daniel are rocking away. Eloise Widmore sits down by Desmond, pissed that he chose to ignore her instructions to leave it alone. He tells her they’re leaving. She keeps looking up at Daniel. So scared. “Are you going to take my son?” she asks him, soul completely laid bare. He covers her hand with his, looks her in the eye. “Not with me, no.” Why not? Is he not ready yet?

10:10 – In the museum, Kate is helping deliver Claire’s baby, isn’t she? Like she was destined to? Charlie shows up. Claire is too panicked to have a flash of remembrance at right this second. Kate springs into action, sending Charlie for supplies, telling Claire to push. Oh wait, apparently there is time for a flash of remembrance. Kate first, just as Aaron comes out, perfectly perfect in that way that only TV babies can be. Claire hugs her son, cries. Charlie returns & Kate smiles at him knowingly, tells him to give her the blanket himself. And ooooh, I knew this flash of remembrance was going to be awesome. It sucks that he looks so ridiculous in this moment, with the eyeliner. “Charlie,” she says. The two of them are laughing & crying over Aaron & Kate just keeps on smiling & yes, I’ve never liked her more than in this moment. Desmond comes up. “Do you understand?” he says. Yes. This part, we do understand. It’s the other part that’s kind of a mess right now.

10:15 – Island present, Team Other Guys (Sawyer, Kate, Hurley & Ben) feel the ground shake. And Ben totally saves Hurley from a falling tree. He’s crushed by it, but isn’t dead yet. Meanwhile, Jack wakes up, heads back into the cave. Yells for Desmond, but there’s no answer. He goes back out & heads the other way. Rain is now pouring down. Team Other Guys try to get the tree off Ben while Miles radios over for a status report. Kate gets from him that Claire doesn’t want to come with them. Lapidus & Richard are trying to fix the plane & determine they’re going to try to take off in an hour. Miles yells at Kate to get over to Hydra like right now, but Team Other Guys don’t actually know how. But Ben does: Flocke’s got a boat.

10:17 – It’s now totally dark & looks very convincingly like the end of days. The Man in Black stands on the cliff, by the ladder that goes to the Numbers Cave. He looks at the yacht, which floating merrily away down below. But then, Jack shows up. “LOCKE!” He yells, even though it’s not his name. The Man in Black has Dogen’s knife & he & Jack start running at each other full steam & we get that epic crane shot of the two of them, in the rain, on the rocks & the Man in Black with the knife & Jack leaping, fists raised &…commercial. UGH!

10:22 – Jack hits Flocke & they both go down & at some point, the knife is lost & the two of them struggle & struggle & both of them go for the knife until finally, the Man in Black gets it & stabs Jack with it! OMG! The Man in Black puts the knife to Jack’s neck, actually cutting him with Jack barely hanging on, but then Kate(!?!?!) shows up & shoots him in the back! Um, wow. Okay, she had no business being in this particular fight, but “I saved you a bullet”? Gotta admit, that’s a great line. I guess the light going out means the two of them can now be killed normally because this time, the bullet does its job & the Man in Black is hurt. Jack is still standing, looking down at him & the Man in Black says, “It’s too late.” Kind of looks that way. Jack doesn’t care. He kicks him off the cliff in a way that looks exactly like how the Man in Black kicked Jacob into the fire. Locke’s body looks still & broken below.

10:24 – Flashsideways, Jack is out of surgery & the nurse seems to indicate it was successful. She asks him what happened to his neck. OH!! OH!! The wound is back, of course it’s the same place as where the Man in Black had the knife. Jack wipes at it & he & the nurse are both surprised when Locke starts to wake up. “It worked,” he tells Jack immediately. Even Jack doesn’t believe he’s that good, but sure enough, Locke moves his legs. Jack uncovers the blanket from Locke’s foot & this is what does it. Flash of remembrance & John is awake. He remembers it all. Well. The part that was really him. Not after he went back.

10:27 – Locke asks Jack if he saw it & Jack starts to. He sees a few flashes, but seems to fight it. Locke says they have to go. Jack says Locke can’t go anywhere, he just had surgery & Jack needs to go see his son. “You don’t have a son,” Locke tells him & oh. Ooooohhh. Jack does not want to hear it, because it can’t be right. That can’t be right. Locke tells him, “I hope that somebody does for you what you just did for me.”

10:31 – Island present, the sky has cleared & it is day again. Did that do it? Is it over? Jack is hurt bad. Team Other Guys, including Ben, arrive on the scene. As Sawyer looks at Flocke’s still form, the ground shakes again. Not over. Too easy.

10:32 – Flashsideways, James Ford arrives at Sun’s hospital room, where the Kwans immediately start grinning since they recognize him. They both greet him in perfect English & Jin’s smile couldn’t be wider when James flashes his badge. James explains about the Sayid escaped murderer threat, since he is not enlightened yet, but Sun is serene. “It’s okay. I am safe,” she tells him. And then Jin opens the door for his wife. “We’ll see you there.” They leave James confused.

10:33 – Island present, Team Getting the Hell Out of Here are now actually in the cockpit, checking things out. Lapidus sends Miles & Richard to check on a hydrolics problem & Ben calls the walkie-talkie to check in. “How are you guys doing? What’s your timetable?” “Don’t bother me!” Lapidus yells. “Sounds like they’re making progress,” Ben comments. LOL! I am going to miss you & your hilarious all-I-do-is-pilot-and-snark ways SO MUCH, FRANK!!

10:34 – On the cliffs, Jack is in bad shape & the ground is still moving. Jack realizes that whatever Desmond turned off, he’s got to turn it back on again. He sends the rest of them off to try to make the plane. Kate predictably tries to stop him, but Jack knows what his destiny is now. He made that choice last week. Sawyer knows it too, he doesn’t try to stop him. He just shakes his hand & thanks him for everything. Sawyer tried to be that man, I think he was pretty good at it, actually. He can be the just man, not the con man. But this is Jack’s destiny. Ben & Hurley decide to stay with Jack. With Ben at least, it’s exactly right. “If the Island’s going down, I’m going down with it.” Ben’s complicated, but in this way, he’s simple. The Man in Black knew this, too.

10:36 – Kate & Jack take this moment to have their final kiss & it’s right in a way BECAUSE they can’t be together. They both say “I love you” & Jack walks away. Kate knows she’ll never see him again.

10:37 – Sidebar to Jack’s story & where I think his flashsideways is going. Remember in season 4 when we saw Jack with Aaron in the O6 flashforward? He really was good with him. When we first saw David this season, I thought, in the end, Jack would be a great dad, in that way that some dads who had crappy fathers of their own would be. I think if Jack had a choice for real, he’d stay in the sideways world.

10:41 – Still in Island present, Miles & Richard are still trying to fix the plane. “I don’t believe in a lot of things. But I do believe in duct tape.” Heh. Aw, I’m going to miss your statements of hilarious truthiness SO MUCH, Miles. The ground shakes again & Sawyer radios to “Chesty” that they’re coming & not to leave without them. Lapidus is really, really focused at this point on getting off this damn Island before it sinks so he doesn’t make any promises. Sawyer & Kate are still on the cliffs & the boat is floating a little distance away. Sawyer says they need to jump. It’s close, but they both make it to the water, which is good because that would have been a sucky way to kill one of them off.

10:43 – Flashsideways, James Ford walks down the hospital halls & OMG, I am so anticipating this, I’m shaking a little. James passes Jack in the hall & asks where he can find food. Jack points out the vending machine—bet I know which one—and even though Jack is in a suit & not his lab coat, James says, “Thanks, Doc.” It’s so familiar that both of them pause for a moment.

10:44 – James goes to try to get an Apollo bar out of the machine. It gets stuck, of course, like, maybe people should stop trying that. James has his hand embarrassingly in the tray, trying to reach up when Juliet, looking beautiful in her black dress for the concert, comes up. James hilariously tells her it’s cool, he’s a cop. “Maybe you should read the machine its rights,” she jokes badly. She tells him a trick, unplugging the machine gets the candy to drop. He does & the machine goes dark & he looks sheepish. But she says, “It worked.” OMG!! She reaches to hand over the candy bar & they touch & I seriously burst into tears right here, like I didn’t even see the flashes the first time around. They part too quickly, confused, but Juliet suddenly, impulsively says that they should get coffee. “I’d love to, but the machine ate my dollar,” he says. “We could go dutch,” she says, here & back then, in his arms when she died. We see all the flashes now, even her last moments, which I don’t think we saw in any of the other flashes. James & Juliet see each other now, she clings to him. “I got you,” he tells her, he can’t believe she’s real. “Kiss me, James,” she smiles. “You got it, Blondie,” he does.

10:45 – I am seriously laughing & crying at the same time, because even though this scene, of everything that’s happened, is one we knew was coming ever since the season premiere, it was still somehow like 45 times more wonderful than I imagined. I am SO HAPPY right now.

10:51 – Still in the flashsideways, Jack finally arrives at the concert, but it’s over. Kate spots him & she knows now & her eyes light up & she clearly thinks she’s the person who’s going to do for Jack what Jack did for Locke. Even if he doesn’t want it. Jack can’t shake the feeling now, so he asks where he knows her from. “I stole your pen,” she tells him, smiling. “And that’s how I know you.” “No,” she smiles. “That’s not how you know me.” She walks up to him, puts a hand to his face. He gets a few more flashes. “I’ve missed you so much.” He flinches, pulls away. She stops smiling. “What is happening to me?” Jack asks, because it’s not quite the same as what’s happening with everybody else. “I know you don’t understand,” Kate tells him. “Because if you come with me, you will.”

10:53 – Island present, Jack, Hurley & Ben arrive at the cave. Jack tells them he’s going down there alone. Hurley can see what’s coming & fights as hard as he can. Jack is calm again, he knew back at the cliffs what was going to happen. “I’m already dead,” he tells Hurley. Hurley protests, he swore to protect the Island, but he already knows too. “It has to be you, Hugo.” Hurley cries & this is not free will. “It was only supposed to be you so I could do it. If someone’s supposed to protect the Island, then it should be you.” Hurley believes him. He accepts but makes some vague threats about coming to get him as soon as he has the light back in him. “Deal,” Jack says & the ground shakes again so he has to get on with the ritual. He asks for something to drink out of & Ben produces an empty water bottle. Aw. Things with this ritual have certainly gotten a lot less symbolic with time. Jack dips the bottle in water, but he doesn’t actually do the prayer part of the ritual. Jack either doesn’t have the knowledge after all, or he’s lying here to Hurley, because there’s half an hour left & this isn’t it. Something’s wrong. And it has to do with Ben because why else would he be there. (Plus, at the cliffs, I was thinking it would make more sense if it was Ben.) Hurley drinks & clearly doesn’t feel anything. “Now you’re like me,” Jack smiles. But he’s not. Is he?

10:57 – On Hydra Island, Lapidus tries the plane again & it works. Which is lucky because they don’t have the battery power to try again. Which means this is it, there’s no more waiting.

10:58 – Ben & Hurley lower Jack into the cave & when the ground shakes, he drops, painfully. It’s very red & dark. Desmond lies unmoving by the pit, but when Jack turns him over, he’s still alive, amazingly. Des is devastated that he has not woken up in his flashsideways. “It didn’t work. You were right, Jack.” It’s not like this was what Jack wanted. Jack tries to get Des over to the rope to get him out, but Des realizes that it has to be him. All that electromagnetic whatsit & all those people telling him he’s special. This is why. “You’re done enough,” Jack tells him though. “See you in another life, brotha.”

11:00 – Sawyer & Kate stumble onto Hydra Island, just in time to see a part of the main Island fall into the ocean. Claire is on the beach, silent. The Ajira plane seems to be working & Lapidus is totally ready to leave without anyone else present. Sawyer tells at them that they have to go but first, Claire has to sit there & whine & waste time. “I can’t! Look at me!” OMG GUYS THE PLANE IS LEAVING LEAVE HER SERIOUSLY. I hate this stupid storyline. Kate takes her cue to get down & give her a big stupid ill-timed pep talk about it being okay to be scared to be a mother & if I were Sawyer, I would seriously just leave the two of them & make a break for the plane. Claire & Kate stare meaningfully into each other’s eyes before, obviously she agrees to go.

11:02 – I love that Lapidus is so completely ready to leave without them that he threw the radio somewhere where he can’t hear it anymore, but somehow, Claire & Kate & Sawyer manage to run them down before they can start taxiing. They run onto the runway to make sure Frank doesn’t try to leave anyway. Smart move, based off of Lapidus’s actions this episode. Have to admire the determination. If the rest of the survivors behaved with this degree of urgency all the time, I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t have taken them six seasons to get off this Island.

11:02 – Anyway, Lapidus does spot Team Late Arrivals &, surprisingly, allows Miles & Richard to go to let them in. In the cave, Jack is in terrible shape, yet makes it to the rock to try to plug the hole again. I’m confused as to how this would bring the light back. He plugs it & looks around desperately. Nothing appears to happen. On Hydra, Miles & Richard pull Sawyer, Kate & Claire into the plane & Miles & Sawyer get to have their tearful reunion. “Good to see you too, Enos.” Aw. In the cockpit, Lapidus gives himself a pep talk. He really is a great pilot because the plane makes it off the ground! That’s freaking amazing, if you think about it. The survivors think so too.

11:05 – In the caves, Jack is still sitting there, looking pained. It’s still very dark & red. But suddenly, he reaches up & there’s water again. The center where the rock is glows. The brightest light you’ll ever see. Jack doesn’t attempt to get out of the pit where the light is. He sits there & feels the water spilling over him & the beautiful light & cries. I think it was waiting until the people on the plane were safely off the island.

11:06 – Ben & Hurley feel something on the rope so they naturally assume it’s Jack, but obviously it’s Desmond. Nobody is pleased to see him. (As far as subplots go, have to say the fail-safe thing was kind of a letdown.) As the light continues to glow, Jack laughs.

11:11 – Flashsideways, John Locke arrives at the church & is helped into a wheelchair by the taxi driver. Ben Linus is sitting outside the church. He’s clearly enlightened too. They greet each other with more peace & less animosity than we’ve seen in years. Ben says that most everyone is already inside. Ben tells John that he’s sorry for what he did. We know he means it. He says he was jealous because Locke was special & he was not. We know Locke wasn’t ever really special. Not really. If I were to guess at this point, I’d say that Ben is. I think Jacob wanted it to be Ben the whole time. This Locke forgives Ben though, so Ben smiles & thanks him sincerely. Ben tells him that he still has things he needs to work out. “I think I’ll stay here for a while.” With Danielle & Alex Rousseau. Where he can have something that matters more than the Island & its power. He is not Napoleon.

11:13 – Ben knowingly tells Locke he doesn’t need to be in the chair anymore. Locke stands, smiles, says goodbye.

11:15 – Island present, up on the main Island, outside the cave, Ben tends to Desmond & determines that he’ll be okay. He goes to Hurley, who is still reeling from Jack being dead & him supposedly the new Jacob/Jack & everything. I still don’t buy that he’s the new Jacob. Jack clearly did not do the ritual. He asks Ben what the hell he’s supposed to do. Ben says he can do what he always does, help people. Like help Desmond finally get off the Island for good & back to Penny where he belongs. Hurley is still playing by Jacob’s rules & doesn’t think people can leave the Island. Ben says maybe there’s another, better way. Hurley asks Ben for his help. He could use someone with experience. Ben can’t quite believe what he’s hearing. This is all he’s ever wanted. To be accepted. Hurley thinks this is cool. Ben smiles.

11:17 – Flashsideways, Hurley comes out of the church & Ben tells him he’s not coming. Ben’s eyes light up at the sight of him. “You know. You’re a real good number 2,” Hurley tells him. “And you’re a great number 1, Hugo,” Ben says back. So I guess Jack did do it right? I’m just so confused as to why they wouldn’t just show it that way then. Also, it’s annoying that Hurley didn’t really choose to become the protector. Jack basically told him it had to be him. Why go through Jacob’s whole Team Free Will exercise then?

11:17 – Jack & Kate arrive at the church & she’s still looking at him that way. Kate says they’re there because this is where he was going to have his father’s funeral. She goes to get out of the car, says he can go out back. Come in when he’s ready. Jack still doesn’t get it. Ready for what? “To leave,” she says. And go where?

11:18 – Another flash, Island present. Jack’s bloody on the rocks by the waterfall, where I think the Man in Black’s mortal body ended up. He’s alive! Jeez, how? Flash, back to the flashsideways, Jack walks into the church, finds his father’s coffin there already. He circles it, still not understanding. He touches it & we flash to that first scene when he opened his eye on the Island. He pulls back, then touches it again & we flash through his entire journey on the Island. All of it. In the flashsideways, he opens the coffin, but it’s empty.

11:22 – A voice behind him. It’s Christian Shephard. Jack doesn’t understand. He says that Christian died. “How are you here?” Christian asks him the same question & Jack knows, “I died, too.” They hug, Christian tells him it’s okay. Jack asks if he’s real. Christian says it’s all real. Everything that happened & all those people in the church, it’s all real. Jack asks if that means they’re all dead. Sort of. Christian says everyone dies sometime, some before Jack, some after. Jack asks where they are, exactly. Yes, please, tell us. “This is a place you all made together, so you can find each other.” That’s so not an answer. “Nobody does it alone, Jack. You needed all of them, and they needed you.” Live together, die alone. “For what?” “To remember. And…let go.” “Kate, she said we were leaving.” “Not leaving. Moving on.”

11:25 – Jack walks out into the church, where everyone is hugging & greeting each other. Then we cut between this & Jack, bloody, walking in the jungle. Jack greets Locke, Desmond & Penny(!!), Boone, Hurley, Sawyer, Kate. Kate, who smiles at him mysteriously & takes his hand. In the jungle, Jack falls to his knees & lies back. In the church, Jack & Kate sit down & the others do too, together, smiling. Christian comes by & touches Jack on the shoulder. In the jungle, Vincent finds Jack in the bamboo field & we’re back to where we started. In the church, Christian Shephard opens the doors & there’s light. The brightest light you’ll ever see. On the Island, Jack is looking straight up at the sky when Ajira flight 316 flies overhead. Jack smiles. He closes his eyes.

11:30 – Okay. I would really like to go back & write something a little more organized & comprehensive later on, but my thoughts right now are: I’m mostly happy with the ending & the resolution of the characters’ stories. I don’t quite get or like the explanation for the flashsideways & I don’t get Christian Shephard’s role in it beyond a clumsy sort of exposition mechanism. I do like is how it functioned as a device to give all of our beloved characters their happy ending. I liked the way the flashes worked as a way for us as an audience to relive the journeys of these characters (sort of a clips show disguised as plot development). Although they never would have gotten away with it, I almost wish they could have just not explained what the flashsideways was at all. On the Island, I liked that some of our survivors & favorite auxiliary characters did make it onto the plane & I liked that Ben got his re-redemption at the end (it’s cool…Ben is the new Alpert). I liked the symmetry of the last scene. Jack at peace in the bamboo fields, Vincent at his side. When it doubt, go back to the beginning. Live together, die alone. Lost was always about the journey.

POSTSCRIPT: I just read one review that said the flashsideways was actually Hurley’s gift, as protector of the Island. The “better way” that Ben suggests to him. This makes perfect sense in hindsight, but was completely missed by me. Why? Because Hurley was entirely secondary in the flashsideways. If it was supposed to be because of him, then so much of the momentum of the flashsideways should not have hinged on Desmond. Also, why was Desmond the only one who could remember the flashsideways from the Island present timeline? Even after most of the characters had their flashes in the sideways-verse, only Desmond was conscious of it in the main timeline. (Or, was Juliet, also? Right before she died? “It worked.”) Also, besides the idea that the end scene is more poetic as just the main season 1 characters, why weren’t people like Daniel & Charlotte, Miles, Ana Lucia or even Ben “ready” to let go?

With all the talk in this episode about who was “right”: Jacob/Jack or the Man in Black, it’s odd that it wasn’t more conversation over the nature of men. I think it’s clearly meant to imply that Jacob is right (certainly that we would like to think that he is), the people who came to the Island didn’t just corrupt & destroy. They changed, they adapted & they created better versions of themselves.

PS: If you haven’t seen Entertainment Weekly’s terrific Totally Lost series, check it out, especially this video of Jacob & the Man in Black (yep, they actually got Mark Pellegrino & Titus Welliver to do this), working out their issues in therapy. I laughed for about 10 minutes straight.

MORNING POSTSCRIPT I: Okay, so a) Wow, so it’s a Lost-less world again. It kind of sucks. b) My instinct is still that I mostly liked it. I’ve had a little time to think up about 500 more things it didn’t answer or that didn’t make sense, but I think that I just want the happy ending so badly, I’m willing to not care right now.

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