Wednesday, July 2, 2008

4.9 The Shape of Things to Come

The doctor from the freighter washes up on the shore, his throat cut. Dan and Charlotte say they have no idea what happened. Dan mentions that he may be able to fix the sat phone so that Morse code can be sent. Kate offers to show him the materials they salvaged from the plane.

Dan is able to fix the phone. He asked what happened to the doctor. The Morse code reply, he says, is that the helicopter is coming back tomorrow and all is well. But Bernard also knows Morse code, and says the actual message is, "The doctor is fine." Jack confronts Dan forcibly for lieing, getting him to admit that they had no intention of rescuing anyone, but has to break off the confrontation when the stomach bug he has been enduring suddenly gets worse.

We can’t see the faces of Alex’s captors, but they are decked out in full army gear. We learn later that they are the mercenaries from the freighter. They force Alex to disable the perimeter fence; she takes that opportunity to send a coded message to Ben’s phone. Ben barricades the house, along with Locke, Hurley. Sawyer almost gets shot while rescuing Claire. Ben gets touchy when Sawyer and Claire try to get safely into the house, but Hurley ignores the gun pointed at him and lets them in. Soon after, the doorbell rings. It is Miles, sent with a phone so that Ben can talk to the mercenaries.

The mercenaries arrive with Alex at gunpoint, saying they will kill Alex if Ben does not come out. Ben tries to bluff them, saying that Alex is not his daughter, and that he is never coming out. They respond by executing Alex. Ben, heartbroken, says they have changed the rules, and disappears behind a locked steel door. Inside, away from prying eyes, he opens another stone door and descends into the earth. When he returns, he brings the smoke monster with him, and it attacks the mercenaries while the survivors go in the other direction. Ben’s plan is to take Locke and Hurley to see Jacob. Locke is required because Jacob will talk to him. Hurley is required because only he knows where the cabin is located. Sawyer gets sick of all this stuff and decides to go back to the beach, taking Claire and Aaron with him. Miles also decides to go back to the beach. Sawyer also wants Hurley to come, but Locke holds Sawyer at gunpoint, insisting that Hurley stay with him. Sawyer and Locke have a standoff that ends when Hurley agrees to go with Locke.

In flash-forward, Ben is face-up in the desert in Tunisia. It seems he must have transported there through a rift in time, as there is no indication of how he got there. Two arabs on horseback find him and appear about to take him prisoner when he goes all James Bond, whipping one and killing the other. He rides the horse into town and takes photos of a man who is hanging around at the funeral of Sayid’s wife, Nadia. Sayid confronts Ben. Ben explains that he has discovered that a man who was working for Widmore killed Nadia in Los Angeles. Later, when Ben confronts the man to give him a message for Widmore, Sayid steps in and empties his gun into the supposed assassin. Wrecked with sorrow and anger, Sayid begs Ben to tell him who to kill next. Ben promises to get in touch, as his mouth curls into that famous little smile of his.

In the dead of night, Ben goes to a penthouse and is able to enter silently. There, he wakes up Charles Widmore, to tell him that he is going to kill Penelope as revenge for Widmore’s killing of Alex.


This brutal episode features non-stop killing, maiming, executing brutality from start to finish. Even Hurley is serious in this episode.

Ben’s story about the man who killed Nadia seems completely contrived to put Sayid into revenge mode, yet Sayid buys it totally. Sayid is really losing his edge.

Why does Ben say that he cannot kill Charles Widmore? Are Ben and Charles not human? They sometimes act with the audacity of Greek gods – perhaps they are. Widmore also says that the island has ‘always’ been his. The way he says ‘always’ made me think that he was talking about a length of time longer than a human lifespan.


Who were those Others who stupidly run out of their houses to have a look when they hear gunfire (and promptly get shot)? I thought Ben said that all of his people had gone to the Temple – and we haven’t seen anyone else living at the barracks. Are they just disposable Others here to get shot?

Quotable Quotes

"Can't believe you're just giving him Australia. Australia's the key to the whole game."
- Hurley

Bernard: He's lying. What the message said was, "What are you talking about? The doctor is fine."
Daniel: You know Morse code.

Sawyer: (regarding Hurley) You harm so much as one hair on his curly head, I'll kill you!
Locke: Fair enough.

"Don't stand there looking at me with those horrible eyes of yours."
- Charles Widmore to Ben Linus

"I know who you are...what you are. I know that everything you have you took from me."
- Charles Widmore to Ben Linus

Charles Widmore: Why are you here?
Ben Linus: I'm here, Charles, to tell you that I'm going to kill your daughter. Penelope, is it? And when she's gone, when she is dead, then you'll understand how I feel, and you'd wished you hadn't changed the rules.

1 comment:

  1. "Who were those Others who stupidly run out of their houses to have a look when they hear gunfire (and promptly get shot)? I thought Ben said that all of his people had gone to the Temple – and we haven’t seen anyone else living at the barracks."

    They aren't others, they are Oceanic Survivors. A bunch of them went with Locke at the beginning of the season.