S6:6 Sundown - A*
Um, show of hands those of you who were rendered speechless by Sundown's end, soon followed by What the hell just happened? I haven't had that gut-punching feeling since The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham (see S5:7) and it was glorious. So much effing awesome happened in the final 10 minutes of the sixth episode of the sixth and final season of one of the world's greatest shows to ever hit, well, the world, that I almost only want to talk about those last 10 minutes. But I can't. Darlton built up the show's momentum almost painfully slow, like the Cliffhanger ride at Six Flags over Texas. It takes forever to get to the top, and once there you barely have time for a breath before you're falling hard and fast - maybe your life flashes before your eyes. Once you get to the bottom, you're alive (barely) and speechless, until finally you squeak out What the hell just happened?
Fasten your safety belts boys and girls cuz here's what I noticed...
Yellow roses are not for lovers. When Sayid got out of the cab with the lovely long stems I knew that he was not going to see a lady love. It was so great to see Nadia alive and kicking and I managed a grin when Uncle Sayid was flanked by his niece and nephew.
Brotherly Love. On the left, cowardly big brother Omer who could not bring himself to kill a chicken for his father. On the right, little bro Sayid who was able to deftly commit chickencide for his brother without hesitation. Present-day Sideways World Omer is still trying to play that I know what kind of man you are' card with Sayid but things have changed. In this world Omer is still big bro to Sayid, but he's also husband to Sideways Nadia, dry cleaner mogul and shady businessman. So shady in fact that he tried to guilt his baby sideways bro into bailing him out Republican Guard style. Sayid's response? I'm not that kind of man anymore. Snap. And tug. 815 landed and he was a changed man - or trying to be. Sayid's struggle for redemption in both worlds was the theme of the night and for the first time this season a Lostie didn't win in either one.
Everybody was Kung-Fu Fighting. Kick-ass fight scene - literally - between island Sayid and Master Dogen. It almost ran too long and I couldn't believe that a freakin baseball, the baseball, falling to the floor was the thing that broke it up.
Welcome back to the circus. The casual way that Claire is able to stroll into the temple with an unknowing Kate just moments behind her is troubling. Why did Kate decide to go back to The Temple? Hasn't she been gone for like half a day? And how does Miles consider Claire as still hot? She's like crawling with ticks and fleas and stuff. Ew. And then down the rabbit hole she went.
Introducing Evil Incarnate. According to Dogen this evil incarnate is an angry man who has been trapped but is now free because Jacob is dead. He will not stop until everything on the island is destroyed. Sayid's last shot at island redemption involves a suicide mission to kill said evil incarnate who will appear to him in the form of someone he knows, someone who has died. And by the way, stab him before he has the chance to speak. And Sayid buys it, hook, line and sinker. For the record, while evil incarnate adequately describes the whole Man in Black-Smoke Monster-body snatching-Flocke guy, I'm still looking for a better name. We could anagram 'evil' and get 'Levi'? I'm open to suggestions.
What's up Levi? I know, it's still a working name. Sayid's redemption mission fails big time and instead Flocke (Levi) plays the whole switch-a-roo and lets him know that he was sent on a suicide mission and shame on him. Then, those famous words 'What if I said you could have anything you wanted?' In sideways world he kind of does. All he has to do is deliver a message that will be the final undoing of The Temple. He convinces its dwellers that Jacob is dead and that 'the man in the jungle' will take them off the island. If they stay in the temple past sundown they'll die. So much for redemption Sayid.
Catch a Falling Star. I used to like that song. I used to love that song. But now, it gives me chills. Coupled with a slow exodus scene from The Temple it was downright creepy.
Keamy and Jin are sideways too! Keamy (who killed Alex daughter-of-Ben) is still a rat bastard in sideways world. He was the one who was extorting Omer and when he kidnapped Sayid he sealed his own fate. Sideways Sayid offed Keamy and his sidekicks to save his own ass and the asses of those that he loves. Oh, and Sideways Jin was tied up in the walk-in so I guess he saved Jin's ass too. Wonder if Keamy and Co. were connected with Sun's father and that blasted watch? And I repeat, so much for redemption Sayid.
Jacob drives a hard bargain. Poor Dogen. He has utterly failed as Temple Master. He was doing fine until those stupid Losties came and messed it all up. Coming in and out at all hours like they owned the place, he has lost control. Sayid's return from his meeting with the devil incarnate and meets up in the 'pool room' with the defeated Dogen. In this amazing scene we find out that the baseball hitting the floor was actually Jacob giving Dogen the subtle minder Hey man, remember the rules and don't forget why you're here. You can't kill a candidate and you gotta protect the temple so your kid can live in an alternate/sideways world where you can
never see him. Got it. Side note: The deal that Dogen made with Jacob where his son gets to live but he doesn't get to ever see him again because he has to report to Crap Hole Island instead is oddly reminiscent of the deal that Ben gave Juliet when she was recruited to the Crap Hole Island: Come work for Mittelos ('timelost' - wha?!) and we'll cure your sister of cancer - Oh, and you can never see her again. Yes, Jacob drives a hard bargain.
Two for the Road. The next scene went down just like Two for the Road back in S2:20, completely with a bug-eyed Ben walking in on a growing body count at the hands of one our beloved Losties. We witnessed Sayid drowning Dogen in the pool after hearing his tale of woe (Sayid was also drowned in that pool and if memory serves that's the place to go to be reborn like Ben and stuff), officially disarming the last of The Temple's defenses. We heard it. Smokey was on his way and when Lennon came in to yell at Sayid to warn him of what he had just done, Sayid offed him to with a knife to the throat. Wow.
Who's that girl? This woman remains a mystery and showed up with the B Team (Ben, Lapidus and Sun) just in time (once again) as Smokey was wreaking havoc on The Temple. She of course knew the secret passages to save their arses and even stopped to grab Miles - whew.
The wrath of evil incarnate. Smokey came into The Temple with an unholy vengeance and swiftly took out all who'd remained, as promised. Kate misses Smokey by a hair but I'd be tempted to know what would would have happened because remember boys and girls, Smokey's had his chance with her before and didn't take her. Cue spookey music and slow motion as we witness another famous exodus, led by Flocke, with his new team amassed, complete with his star acquisition Sayid, Claire, and Kate. Wha?
Thoughts on Kate #51. Remember, Kate's been 'touched' by Jacob, so according to the rules she's safe. Smokey can't kill her. She's also not on the list of candidates altho I firmly believe that she still serves a very crucial purpose for whomever's team she ends up on due to her ties to 2 of the candidates Jack and Sawyer. That's right. She could be the very key to encouraging (unknowingly) a final alliance. Did you see Flocke's face when she strolled out with Sayid (Fayid?) and Claire? The briefest moment of shock. He totally hadn't counted on this little follower but she could be his happiest accident yet.
My brain hurts.
* In it's original conception this episode recap received an A-. But after 72 hours confined to a couch and plenty of time for re-watching and inner theorizing the rating was upgraded to a solid A. The first 50 minutes were slow as all get out but they were rife with substance. Thank you Darlton.