Before We Start…
Before we delve into a summary of this, the final episode, I want to take a moment to talk about my journey with Lost. Like many of my readers, I too have been there from the start. Like many of the Lost characters, I also feel like I have been trapped on that island and in that universe for the same amount of time as they were. And it is a pleasant trapped feeling. For this, I must thank the creators and producers of Lost (principally, J.J. Abrams, Jeffrey Lieber, and Damon Lindelof, although there many others involved), who have not only adhered strictly to their plot planning and structure, but have also carefully ensured that the look, feel and mood of the very first episode matches the same in the very last. What a joy it has been for viewers to see a creator’s vision for a long-running television series be allowed to carry through to its natural conclusion, without tampering by the networks or sudden interruption due to concern over ratings.
And so, finally, and a bit sadly, The End begins…
Summary and Spoilers
A series of quick juxtapositions show us the survivors both on the island and in LA, reminding us of the important connection. In LA, Kate watches as Christian Shephard’s coffin is delivered to Jack. Desmond intercepts this, signs for it, and asks that it be taken around the back. Kate wants to know what is going on. Desmond says he wants to ‘leave’, whatever that means, and promises to show her whatever that means.
On the island, Sawyer talks with the new Jack for the first time and asks for guidance. Jack shares the info that they need to get to the heart of the island and stop Smokey from putting it out – which will save all their lives. Sawyer believes that Desmond is the key. He goes on his own to fetch Desmond and will meet the others at the heart.
In LA, Hurley and Sayid pull into a hotel parking lot. Sayid, like Kate, has no idea what’s going on. Hurley says, "Stick with me and you’ll be very happy." He then pulls out a tranquilizer gun and heads for a hotel room where Charlie is drinking and drugging himself into a stupor. Hurley is there to convince Charlie to play the scheduled concert tonight, telling him that it is the most important thing he will ever do. When Charlie is not impressed, Hurley goes to plan B and shoots him with a dart. Hurley loads him in the car and off they go.
I find it ironic that the two people doing all the leading now, Hurley and Desmond, and probably the least likely leaders of the group.
On the island, Jack tries to explain why he took the job. It wasn’t for the dental plan; I don’t think you would need one if you are immortal, because your teeth probably don’t age either.
Sawyer thinks he is stealthily spying on Unlocke at the well, but Ben circles around and brings him in as a prisoner. This only lasts briefly; Sawyer quickly punches Ben and steals his gun, but before that he finds out that he is correct about Unlocke. He does need Desmond to destroy the island. Unlocke also tells Ben that he plans on sinking the island and sailing away, and he invites Ben to join him.
Desmond has escaped from the well and is being tended to by Rose, Bernard, and their dog Vincent. Rose feeds Desmond but tells him he must leave when he finishes, and she and Bernard have a rule not to get involved. But it is too late; Bernard has inadvertently led Unlocke and Ben to their camp. Unlocke makes it simple; either Desmond comes with him now, or he kills Rose and Bernard. Desmond agrees as long as Unlocke promises never to hurt them, which he does.
Unlocke, Ben and Desmond are heading for the heart. Ben’s concealed walkie lets off a little static and Unlocke almost realizes what it is, but he drops it. Ben tucks it a little further into his pocket and keeps walking. The source of the static is Miles, who has found Richard. Richard is stunned, but quickly recovers and gets back on task: to go to the other island and blow up the plane.
Back in LA, Miles sees Sayid the former prisoner passengering away and calls Sawyer to find out what is going on. Sawyer heads for Sun in the hospital to protect her from the escaped prisoner.
At the hospital, Jin looks after Sun. Sun’s baby doctor is Juliet. As Juliet does the ultrasound, Sun flashes back to the last time she did this – on the island – and suddenly she remembers all of it, as does Jin.
On the island, Sawyer rejoins the group, concerned about getting to Desmond first. Jack reminds him that they are all heading for the same place.
At the hospital, Jack and Locke speak before surgery. Locke asks about the missing coffin; Jack says it should be arriving soon. A bit later, Jack banters with Juliet, who just happens to be his ex-wife. Sawyer arrives, checking in on Sun.
Richard and Miles head for the other island. They retrieve Frank, floating in a life preserver. Frank is a handy pickup, because he has an idea even better than blowing up the plane: stealing the plane and taking it away. Either way, Unlocke won’t be able to use it. The explosives may cause a little problem for them, however.
There’s a gunfight coming at the OK Corral heart of the island, but first there is a little curtain raiser in an open field as Unlocke and Gang faces Jack’s Mob. Jack and Unlocke stand face to face and quietly speak about what will happen. Summary: Unlocke will try to destroy the island, and Jack will kill him. This is one of the best dramatic scenes in the entire Lost series. A little later, Jack tells Sawyer that Desmond is the surprise, a kind of secret weapon – although Jack doesn’t know how to use him yet. As they near the light, Unlocke says that only he, Jack and Desmond should continue on with the others staying back.
At the source, Desmond tries to convince Jack that none of this matters – that the alternative universe awaits them either way – a place where they can be with their loved ones and be happy. Jack does not go along with this. He puts great importance on the here and now. And so, tied together, they climb into the cave of the light.
Hurley and Sayid sit in the car at night, waiting for…something. Hurley kills time by building up Sayid’s deflated ego, telling him he thinks Sayid is a good person. Moments later, a fight starts in an alley. One man is beating up a brother and sister. Sayid jumps from the car and stops the assailant. He helps the woman to her feet – it is Shannon – and suddenly they both remember their island love and are reunited. Moments later, Boone stumbles up to the car, complaining a little about how many punches he has to take, and how difficult it was to get Shannon to come back from Australia. The guys both agree to let Sayid and Shannon enjoy their moment together.
Richard and gang land on Hydra and are met by bullets from Claire’s gun. She calms down when she finds out that they were not sent by Unlocke to kill her. Richard invites her to join them, but she refuses. This confrontation is heard via walkie by Kate and the others.
Unlocke and Jack lower Desmond slowly down a waterfall and discuss whether the real Locke was right or wrong about everything.
Backstage at the concert, Charlotte and Daniel are reunited. Kate, Claire, and Desmond are at the same table. Dr. Chang is the MC. On stage, Charlie makes eye contact with Claire. Suddenly, Claire feels pains and heads for the bathroom. The baby is coming; Claire heads backstage, and Kate helps her.
At the bottom of the waterfall, Desmond finds skeletons – and a circular pool. Without fear, he enters – and his body is rocked by electrical currents. He fights against them to remove a stone plug with the pool, draining it and extinguishing the light. The source of the plug begins to emit steam. Unlocke stops a second to gloat about Jack being wrong, then leaves. Jack tackles him and bloodies his lip, proving that Unlocke was also wrong – and is now mortal. A rock to Jack’s ear also proves his mortality. Their fight now will be to the death, but for now, Unlocke slips away.
Eloise Hawking visits Desmond’s table to remind him she said not to let this happen (by this, she means enabling the survivors to see the alternate reality). Desmond says he chose to ignore her.
Once again, Kate helps Claire to deliver her baby, and in that moment, they remember. That eyeliner wearing base player brings a blanket to Claire, and he and she are reunited – this one really touched me.
Back on the island, a full-blown catastrophic event is taking place, with rain and tremors. Jack jumps off and runs someplace – I assume he is pursuing Unlocke. Ben is trapped under an unmovable log. Miles says via walkie that they are taking off in an hour. Ben suggests they can make it in time if they take Unlocke’s boat.
Unlocke stands at the top of the cliff, ready to climb down the ladder to escape. Jack arrives, and they fight on the side of the cliff, threatened by the terrain and each other. As the cliff falls away near them, Unlocke stabs Jack in the side. Unlocke is about to deliver the fatal blow when Kate arrives and shoots him, saving Jack’s life. Unlocke says it is too late, but after Jack pushes him off the cliff, the sun shines on the island again. But as Sawyer and the others arrive, another tremor shakes the cliff face.
In LA, Jack has finished operating on Locke. He is wondering why his neck is bleeding, and why Locke woke up immediately after surgery. Locke has movement in his legs, and in that moment, he remembers everything that happened on the island. Jack could too, but he resists, and instead goes off to look for his son at the concert, even though Locke says they should go and that Jack has no son.
Sawyer checks in on Sun. He wants to protect her from Sayid and cannot understand why she and her husband just keep beaming at him as if they are sharing a private joke.
Frank scrambles to get the plane ready to fly. Jack realizes he must go back and try to turn on whatever Desmond turned off. Jack says goodbye to Sawyer and Kate and takes Hurley and Ben with him. Kate and Jack kiss deeply and profess their love, knowing that they may not ever see each other again. And how can Kate and Sawyer make it to the plane on time? They can jump off the cliff – and they do, too.
Sawyer and Jack meet at the hospital, and that moment almost gives Sawyer realization. A moment later, when Sawyer runs into Juliet. When she helps him out of his stuck candy bar dilemma, they both remember their island life and how it ended. They embrace, barely believing that they have been given a second chance.
At the concert, Jack meets Kate. Maybe it is the depth of their island relationship, or maybe it is the dress, but this finally breaks through and he cannot resist the memories. Kate asks him to come with
Hurley supports Jack as he moves slowly toward the cave. Jack says he must go alone. Hurley realizes that Jack is on a suicide mission. Jack asks Hurley to take his place. Hurley resists but accepts. And you have to wonder why Ben is there and why he wanted to come. Hurley drinks the water given to him by Jack and becomes the new Jacob. While Frank starts up the engines on Hydra, Jack is lowered into the hole. Jack helps Desmond to his feet, ties him up, and sends him home. Someone has to put that stone into the plug and die.
Sawyer and Kate reach Hydra. Sawyer turns and watches the other island disintegrating fast now. The sound of the plane engines revving means they must go. Kate convinces Claire to join them. They arrive at the plane just before Frank is ready to take off.
Jack lifts the heavy stone and places it into the hole, then crumples in pain.
Frank gets the plane airborne. With sudden serenity, they float above the turmoil.
As the light re-ignites and water pours into the pool, Jack laughs and cries with joy. Hurley and Ben pull the rope to retrieve Jack but find Desmond on the end of it.
Locke arrives at a church where Ben waits outside. Ben apologizes for what he did to John, and John forgives him. At Ben’s suggestion, Locke gets up out of his wheelchair and walks into the church.
Outside the cave, Hurley grieves for the lost Jack. Hurley is burdened by the scope and breadth of his new assignment, so asks Ben to help. Ben is honored and agrees.
At the church, Hurley thanks Ben for being a great number two. Jack and Kate arrive at the church, the church where Jack was going to have his father’s funeral. Kate goes in and tells Jack to go around back.
On the island, Jack awakens. He is still in pain, but the island is healed.
Jack walks into the church and sees his father’s coffin. When he touches the lid, he sees all the events of the island. When he opens the lid, the coffin is empty, but his father stands beside him. How can Jack’s dead father be in this place? Only one way – if everyone else is also dead. Did you wonder why those bodies were found at the bottom of the ocean? They did die, although not necessarily together. But in this place, Christian explains, they can all come together to remember and let go.
Inside the church, there is a joyous reunion between people who shared a special time together. Christian leaves, flooding the room with white light.
On the island, it ends as it began – with Jack collapsed amid a forest of bamboo. Vincent comes to say goodbye as Jack watches the plane leave the island, and his eyes slowly close.
I don’t fully understand all that, but whatever it was, it sure was beautiful.
"No one can tell you why you’re here, Kate – certainly not me."
"I got a bad feeling about this."
- Hurley’s reaction to Sawyer separating to go get Desmond
Unlocke: So it’s you.
Jack: Yeah, it’s me.
Unlocke: Jacob being who he is, I expected to be a little more surprised. You’re sort of the obvious choice, don’t you think?
Jack: He didn’t choose me. I volunteered.
Unlocke: I assume you’re here to stop me.
Jack: I can’t stop you. In fact, I, uh – I want to go with you.
Unlocke: I’m sorry Jack, I think you’re a little confused about what I came here to do.
Jack: No, I’m not. No, you’re going to the far side of the bamboo forest, to the place that I’ve sworn that I’ll protect. And then you think you’re gonna destroy the island.
Unlocke: I think?
Jack: That’s right. Because that’s not what’s gonna happen.
Unlocke: And what’s gonna happen, Jack?
Jack: I’m gonna kill you.
Unlocke: How do you plan to do that?
Jack: That’s a surprise.
Unlocke: Okay. Let’s get on with it.
Sawyer: What happened?
Kate: Locke’s dead. It’s over.
[a tremor shakes the cliff]
Sawyer: It sure don’t feel like it’s over.
Jin: We’ll see you there.
Sawyer: See me where?
Ben: Frank, how’s it going over there – what’s your timetable?
Frank: Don’t bother me!
Ben: Sounds like they’re making progress.
Kate: What now?
Sawyer: We jump.
Juliet: Kiss me James.
Sawyer: You got it, Blondie.
Kate: You can go in around back.
Jack: Wait – where are you going?
Kate: Inside – we’ll be waiting for you there – once you’re ready.
Jack: Ready for what?
Kate: To leave.
Jack: Where are we going?
Christian: Let’s go find out.