Last Week on Lost: The Constant

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In an interview with Entertainment Weekly‘s Jeff Jensen, Lost‘s executive producer Damon Lindelof teases that, at some point during tonight’s episode (“The Other Woman”), “Ben’s gonna tell us who sent that damn freighter!” Which is pretty exciting, I guess, if you think Ben’s going to tell the truth. What’s more exciting is that Lindelof also rehashes last week’s episode with Jensen, and in the process clarifies a few points which might have otherwise been confusing.

I’ll throw some of my thoughts below the fold, so as not to spoil any RSS readers who might not have seen “The Constant” yet.

First of all, let me say that I’ve been making a habit of re-watching the previous week’s episode during my Wednesday evening commutes home (yay for iTunes and for long bus rides). This may mean that you’re treated to a look back like this each week, but we’ll see. One thing that I’ve learned over the course of blogging for nine years is that I shouldn’t make promises. I rarely ever keep them.

Unstuck in Time

How many Geek Forcers out there have read Slaughterhouse Five? Were you as elated as I was when you heard that phrase? It instantly made what Desmond was experiencing make sense. I’m not sure if Stephanie got it—I explained the reference during a commercial—but I’m not sure if she had to, if anyone had to. Eventually, the whole thing made sense on its own. But if you’d read Vonnegut’s classic, it made sense even quicker. Kudos to the powers that be for including the shout-out.

Here’s Doc Jensen explaining exactly what happened, an interpretation which was confirmed as accurate by Damon Lindelof:

In “The Constant,” Desmond became “unstuck in time” after flying through a thundercloud crackling with strange electricity. He experienced something like time travel, though not bodily time travel; instead, his consciousness shuttled between two different time periods, Island present 2004 and Desmond’s past 1996. But here’s the tricky twist: Desmond’s Island-present mind wasn’t the one doing the time traveling. When Desmond got hit with Island magic, his consciousness got knocked off-line and was replaced by his 1996 self. It was this older Desmond consciousness that toggled between present and past throughout the episode. Once Desmond ‘96 completed the errand of getting Penny’s phone number so he could call her on Christmas Eve 2004, Desmond’s present-day mind came back online, but rebooted with the new memories created by his time-travel adventure.

Very, very cool. There’s even more goodness to be found over at EW‘s Website.

Crying at the End

I don’t know about you, but this season of Lost has jerked more than a few tears out of me. When Hurley had to tell Claire that Charlie was dead—that did me in, big-time. And in “The Constant,” when Penny picked up the phone, it was such a huge payoff to a storyline that’s been playing out at a very careful pace since season two. I couldn’t have been happier about the way that scene was written, directed, and acted. It was fantabulous, and I wept a little.

It also convinced me that Desmond and Penny will not be reunited anytime soon, and that they might not ever be reunited at all. It just gave me this feeling that our mutual friend Desmond is headed for a dirt-nap and not for his beloved’s arms. Maybe they’ll see each other briefly and he’ll be gunned down by one of her father’s goons (her father must have goons, right?).

A Freighter Full of Goons

Anyone else think that Papa Widmore is the name that Ben’s going to drop tonight? Why else did we get that scene of him buying the journal of the Black Rock‘s first mate? Who else would be giving specific orders not to pick up when Penny calls? You see where I’m going with this? I’m willing to bet that Widmore might even be on the freighter. Wouldn’t that be intense? Maybe Desmond won’t get a dirt nap. Maybe he’s going to be shoved overboard and into the waiting jaws of Ezra James Sharkington instead.

Anybody with me? Any other thoughts on “The Constant”? Any theories on tonight’s episode, “The Other Woman”?