Content note: Spoilers for season six, episode 11 of Lost, ‘Happily Ever After.’ For to avoid spoilers, you can check out today’s post, ‘Faking It.’
‘What if this wasn’t supposed to be our life?’
The key question of the entire season, summed up for us by Charlie.
I’m not sure that this episode revealed anything new, exactly, or maybe I am just missing something[1. This is entirely possible because it has been an extremely long day and I am a little out of it and will probably watch this episode again and go oh because I do that sometimes and given the way people were talking about it, I think I missed something.], but it was definitely interesting. Because Desmond himself is interesting. What is it about him that makes him the hinge upon which everything turns? He’s endured some pretty intense electromagnetic insults and come up swinging, he’s time traveled, and now, it seems like he’s going to try and set things right, although the direction that takes is not really clear just yet.
To be honest, I am going to be extremely pissed if ‘love’ is the force which somehow makes Desmond special, because I am a cranky curmudgeon with a flea in my ear. This episode was definitely heavy on the love angle with the whole Desmond and Penny forever stuff going on and it made me nervous that this was how it was going to go. And that of course it would be the man who is the central character in the story; Penny is a love object but she is not an autonomous actor. Which is, in general, a theme with Lost in general. The female characters aren’t really allowed to do much unless it is somehow related to manchasing or babies, or both.
I’ve always felt like the flash sideways is a reflection of things gone slightly wrong. Even though sometimes good things seem to be happening to the characters, it seems like they repeat a lot of patterns and not all of them learn from it although there certainly are exceptions. I can’t figure out how much of that is just my resistance to the flash sideways timeline in general, and me reacting to seeing the characters in an unfamiliar setting, and how much of it really is that there’s an undercurrent of wrong in that timeline.
So, we know that Desmond flashes back and forth between the two timelines, which honestly does not surprise me. I have Suspicions about Jack, which may be groundless, but it’s hard to tell at this point. Obviously Eloise knows what’s up. Clearly Desmond has made some sort of decision about what he wants to do and things are starting to move along at a fast clip now, what with ‘I can’t feel anything’ Sayid emerging from the jungle to get down to business. I think that the pieces are in place and now they are all going to fall together.
Something which this is bringing up for me is: Let’s say that Desmond is going to somehow fix one of the timelines and cause the other one to vanish. Why should he get to make that choice? Shouldn’t all of the people who are potentially going to be affected be involved in the decision about what to do and how to move forward? It’s kind of a theme in this series, that people make huge decisions for others without consulting or even really considering them. This is a momentous choice.
And what would happen if both timelines kept spinning onwards? Is it really necessary to fix one? Will they collide? Or could they potentially go on infinitely? Widmore seems to imply that Certain Doom is in the cards but I’m not really trusting his word on this one. He clearly has some ulterior motives here, right?
This concludes what has probably been my shittiest post ever on Lost! Sorry I didn’t really bring it this week, folks. Luckily the ladies of Feministe are doing their weekly roundtable tomorrow and I’m sure they will have interesting things to say. I was also wondering, although I am woefully late out of the gate on this one, if any of the Lost fans among my readers have recommendations for fan communities which I might enjoy, since I would like to be reading theories and commentary by more folks as we close in on the end.