Thursday, July 9, 2009

1.04 Walkabout

Follow along! The episode guide to "Walkabout" is in Finding Lost, pp. 27-30.

The pilot was amazing, the characters were already intriguing, but on October 14, 2004, THIS was the episode that made me go, “WOW!” And not just because Buffy executive producer David Fury was the dude who wrote it. This episode was epic. Now I watch it and think, “How did I NOT figure out he was paralyzed?” because on my first viewing, that wheelchair pulling away from the desk in the Walkabout office elicited loud gasps from both me and my husband. It was shocking; a beautiful twist to a wonderful episode. Locke was my favourite character from that point on. He was creepy, weird, possibly psychotic, but there was something about him that just made him stand apart. I LOOOOOOVED watching this episode again!

Fun things I noticed:
• A few people have wondered aloud if Smokey might have brought down the plane. One thing I noticed even back in 2004 was that there was a LOT of black smoke sort of wisping and dancing around the fuselage, even where there’s no fire. Where’s there’s smoke... there’s supposed to be fire. But here it’s just black smoke. That, however, would cancel out my theory that Smokey avoids the beach.
• When they hear the boars, Jack’s immediate assumption is that Sawyer is looting the fuselage again, showing how he already hates the guy. Sawyer’s response – “I’m right behind you, Jackass” – is frickin’ BRILLIANT. I howled.
• I love how they run from the boars as if it’s the scariest thing they’ve ever seen. I have bad news for you guys: you’re going to see MUCH scarier.
• You know, honestly, I’ve never understood why Kate and Sayid were never a thing. I sense chemistry between those two. He respects her, he doesn’t judge her, he brings her into his personal “circle of trust” and she respects him. I guess she thought he wasn’t complicated enough?
• Jack has a bandana tied around his neck. THAT is a fashion statement that, thankfully, did not continue. Thank the island gods.
• Between Claire and Boone asking Jack to do things that there’s no reason he would have to do, we can already see the makings of the reluctant leader. They want him to lead them in everything, and he doesn’t want to.
• I still can’t get over Locke with HAIR!!
• I love that Shannon’s wearing hot pink lipstick. 
• Rose says that Jack has a good soul. Sometimes I have trouble reconciling this Rose – who I saw as sort of saintly, motherly, lovely – with the, “Oh you have GOT to be kidding me” Rose we saw at the end of S5 who sees everyone for the first time in 3 years and basically tells them to piss off.
• Sawyer flirts with Kate, she rejects him. Ah. Just like the good old days. In the... future. In... 1977. Man, this show is confusing.
• The show had a different format back then. There were lots of hints of closed arcs of upcoming episodes, whereas now the show has a serialized feel, with individual backstories only being part of that episode and that episode only. But in this one we see Jack’s Christian sightings (foreshadowing White Rabbit), Sayid finding Nadia’s picture (Solitary) and Charlie being used by another woman (Homecoming)
• Jack: “I’m not big on rubbing it in.” Me: “LIAR!”
• I said just before Locke disappeared down the well in “This Place Is Death” in S5 that when Juliet says thank-you, that’s got to be one of the first times anyone says it to him. Sure enough, Michael just says “Nice work” about killing the boar, not “Thank you.”

Things that have new meaning:
• Jack: “Any bodies we bury are not going to stay buried for long.” EEK! Everyone always quotes Locke telling Paulo that things on the beach don’t stay buried for long, but they were touching on this theme in the fourth episode. Nothing on the ISLAND seems to stay buried for long...
• Sayid notices that Kate is as anxious to get off the island as he is... and yet they’ll both come back (against their will, interestingly).
• In later seasons, we see John say, “My name is John Locke” to just about everyone. And yet here, when Jack asks him for the first time who he is, Michael answers that he’s “Mr. Locke.” John never actually introduces himself to Jack. Hm...
• After JL flips open the knives, Hurley says, “Who is this guy?” Many times people will ask, “Where are we?” “What is this place?” but Locke is the only one where they ask who is this PERSON.
• Jack distrusts Locke immediately.
• Randy mocks John’s mentions of “destiny,” and when he says that word, John’s three-note musical motif plays. What an awesome moment in retrospect!!!
• Randy also calls John an old man and says his delusions of destiny are just that: which is what Jack says to him in “The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham”
• Hurley says he fished off the Santa Monica pier with his old man. I didn’t think anything of that, until now. He must have been very young fishing, since his old man left when he was a kid.
• The first person chosen as a babysitter is Sun, despite the fact she can’t speak English. This foreshadows how Claire always leaves Aaron with her when she has to go somewhere.
• Rose says of the Tailies, “They’re probably thinking the same thing about us.” Yep. They were.
• Jack chases the image of Christian into the jungle... and Locke is standing there. Wow. Even in the fourth episode they were linked. Now, just like Christian, Locke has died off the island, travelled to the island in a coffin, crash-landed onto it, and seems to be walking around it.
• John’s two mantras – “this is my destiny!” and “don’t tell me what I can’t do!” – are linked in this episode, and now they have SO much more resonance when we’ve seen what he CAN do. Or... what his reanimated body can do.
• At the end of the episode, fire loops up around the image of Locke standing there. It has a different resonance to me now, thinking of him kicking Jacob into the fire pit.

My Favourite New Theory:
• Ali Bags suggested on “Pilot, Part 2” that maybe Vincent is Jacob! I must admit, the dog creeped me out even more on the rewatch than ever before. I mean, this is the dog that pulled the blanket off Nikki and Paulo and tried to get them to STOP burying them alive... what kind of horrible canine IS that thing?! But seriously... he seems to be all-knowing, he does some benevolent things, some terrible things, seems to be leading people in bad directions... and he seems to have an ambivalent relationship with Smokey, who may be the Man in Black. And remember: in the cabin, there’s a painting of a golden-haired dog. It’s not a lab, but we can pretend it is. ;)


humanebean said...

OMG! Nik, I have been waiting for you to post on "Walkabout" since I rewatched it a week or more ago. (yes, in blu-ray - I'll stop saying that now) Unfortunately, I forgot to make specific notes and can't seem to get the episode to play on the crappy hotel internet out here on the West Coast. (would I like some cheese with that whine?)

But! I could not BELIEVE the interconnections between Locke and Smokey that are revealed here. In his office at the box company, Locke's adding machine makes a noise just like Smokey's ch-ch-ch-ch. Later, of course, Locke comes face to face with Smokey .... and looks awestruck. We will see much more of Smokey's 'interface' with people ... when Mr. Eko is shown scenes from his past ... and with Ben beneath the Temple.

What does Smokey show Locke here? When questioned, he denies having gotten a good look at the Smokester. But later, he will tell us that he has looked into the (eye? I forgot the exact wording) of the Island and seen ... something "beautiful". What does Locke see from his own past (or the Island's, perhaps) that he would characterize in this way??

Hey, Nik - can I go back and add this to the "mysteries I want answers for in Season 6 " list?

JW said...

I agree that the writing for this episode is incredible. The acting is great, too, but in my opinion the writing is the star of this episode. It's beautifully crafted with twist after twist, from John stepping into the spotlight by throwing the knife at Sawyer to the tease where we think John may be some sort of great military leader only to find out what a sad life he was living to the big reveal at the end with the wheel chair.

These sorts of twists and turns are what made season 1 so great; it was more difficult for the writers to do this to the major characters afterwards. They did find other things to do, but I think season 1 is still one of the top two seasons of Lost because of episodes like this. (Maybe I'll feel differently later.)

Other things I noticed:

Lost is one of the greatest shows in television history because its unique way of telling two stories in one episode, using flashbacks, develops characters much better any previously used tv show format, making the show much richer in characters than most other shows. However, in the first episode, there was like one flashback, and it didn't really develop Jack's character at all, but merely showed us the crash. Pilot 2 had a couple flashbacks that showed us a little more of the crash... then Kate's episode was the first one to truly give us bits of a character's past that help explain her present... and yet even that was flashback light. Walkabout, however, gives us a perfect balance between flashbacks and the present and does what Lost will do so well in future episodes: start with two stories and have them converge at the end.

If someone had never seen the show and wanted to know what it was like and what all the fuss is about, I'd show them this one.

Writing is my Passion said...

My cousin has this theory that Jacob's enemy is Smoky. And he takes form of Christian Shephard as well as Not-Locke. I agree with her.

I knew that Locke was in the wheelchair before I truly got into it. The first episode I saw was "The Man From Tallahassee" where, in flashbacks, he was thrown out of the window. So it wasn't a huge "gasp!" moment when I first saw this episode in December of 2007.

Jack's little neck-thing. Couldn't agree more with you. It looked so weird.

Fred said...

Normally, I have been quite impressed with David Fury's writing on LOST (hated it on 24 this last season--oh and don't get me started about the missed opportunity--Jack Bauer at the end having the Iman come in to his hospital bed; wouldn't have been cool if we learnt Jack had converted to Islam during his time in Africa--oh, but that would never sell on American tv). But on LOST, David Fury was top of his form (and also Javier Grillo-Marxuach).
Thanks, Nikkki, the bad guys always smoke (at least in modern films). I thought it was sort of a PC thing, given all the other sins happening on the show. So why doesn't Ben smoke?
What I loved in the pilot was the gaps in knowledge we were getting. When the polar bear appears, Kate yells "Sawyer", and later Charlie talks about the size of the smoke monster that 'killed the pilot' (Jack had said no one survived, in the pilot). This is not a continutity error/script error, as in Tabula Rasa Hurley asks Jack about the smoke monster. So we get the idea that as viewers we are not privy to all that is going on (so much for the omnipetence of the camera).
Tabula Rasa alos brings in the idea of 'hope'. Sayid says they should not talk about the radio transmission as this would kill the survivors' hope. This point will be made by Jack's father to his son. But as viewers we have to take this to heart. We assume, given the standard narrative of TV shows, that the hero survives--but what if all hope is gone? In the end it is not just possible to kill Jack, but all the others (my wife suggests Hurley survives, like the first mate form the Black Rock, to tell the tale--a very Henry Jamesian approach).
I keep wondering when Kate is looking at the Edward Mars, and he awakes to try to strangle her, if that isn't Wayne? Like when Sawyer wakes and attacks Kate. After all Mars was not unsympathetic to Kate, he just had to bring her in. (Against just like the Marshall did in the movie the Fugitive to Kimbles' character).
The first real introduction to Locke, when he throws the knife into the seat Sawyer is sitting in reminds me of theose spagetti Westerns with Clint Eastwood. Even the 'what's his name' to which Michael says, "Locke,his name is Locke". And that perfect pitch of the music--say Fistful of Dollars, or The Good the Bad and the Ugly. After Locke's spiel, you have to laugh at Sawyer's retort to Jack, "And you gave him his knife back?" There is more of Kurosawa in this scene than I can ever imagine.
Another thing, Claire is dressed in black (shades of 'Esau'), while a lot of the main characters are associated with white dress--Jack, Kate, Locke, Sayid, Michael, but not Rose nor Boone. Is this the first instance of the white/black division, and does Claire's pechant for black side her more firmly with Esau? Notice she is also wearing the Chinese amulet for 'love'.

Anonymous said...

I know it hasn't happened yet, but reading the theory that Vincent may be Smoky (the real dog having perished in the crash) made me wonder about "The Man from Tallahassee." Did Sawyer kill the real Locke's dad, or was that yet another manifestation of Smoky? And if he was the real deal, how the heck did he get there?

Jazzygirl said...

I agree with Humanebean...what the hell did Locke see in the smoke monster? And why did it spare him?
Nikki, you're not alone in feeling naive about the wheelchair. I remember the OMG moment when the Walkabout guy walks away from him and we see the chair for the first time. In fact, in re-watching it, I was purposely looking for hints that I missed the first time. I didn't find any. They did a FABULOUS job at hiding it. It also sets the stage for Locke's other flashbacks that fill in the gaps on this one. As JW said, it really gives the twists and turns of his tragic life. And his phone girlfriend, sad. :( Clearly he's hung onto her for months because of the other Helen...which, may I add, I was SOOOOO rooting for them to stay together!!
Anyway, as everyone has said...great episode.

Jazzygirl said...

Oh yeah! I also HOWLED when Sawyer said "I'm right behind you, Jackass!"

Susan said...

So Nikki, not much of a Jack fan, are you ;)

I liked Locke at first, before he started becoming obsessive, self-centered, and just plain weird. But this is my favorite Locke episode. The ending, where he's yelling at the Australian dude, with the awesome music, changing to the scene where he realizes he can walk again, that is wonderful television.

About Jack's bandana, it's not a fashion statement. Some of the Losties were scavenging things from the wreckage before burning it, and wore bandanas to protect from either the smell or the germs. There's the scene where Boone comes to tell Jack about Rose, and Boone covers his face during the conversation because of the smell.

Nikki Stafford said...

humanebean: I haven't gotten there yet, but I remember later Locke says he saw a white light. Eko replies, "That's not what I saw." So why was Smokey white to him? That's the part that interests me the most.

I think it's because the Man in Black is Smokey, as I've been positing right from the moment I posted my first thoughts on the S5 finale. He's chosen Locke, and he needs to endear the island to him. And this is how he does it.

JW: ABSOLUTELY. I always tell people if you want to get someone into Buffy or Lost by not showing them the pilots, show them Hush on Buffy and Walkabout on Lost. I'm positive you'll lure them in. :)

Writing: Your cousin must read this site, because that's pretty much been our theory from the get-go, too. Smart cousin! :)

Yes, I believe the MiB is Smokey, and he's the many manifestations on the island, too. That's why Vincent as Jacob intrigues me so much.

Fred: Maybe Ben isn't the bad guy. ;)

Susan: Yeah, I know that about the bandanas. It was just a fun thing to say. And I actually adore Jack. I think he's a very complex character, I feel his pain, I think he's had a terrible life, and I'm one of the very few people who thinks we should give him a break about wanting to detonate a bomb because his life sucks so much.

But his holier-than-thouness is just SO much fun to make fun of. ;)

I think Matthew Fox turned in one of the best performances of S5. The man is amazing, and he plays Jack very carefully, and makes us loathe and love him all at once.

Susan said...

Well I admit that the first couple of times I watched the episode I did NOT know what the bandanas were for.

Jack has been one of my favorite characters from the get-go, yet I don't enjoy most of his flashbacks like I do with some of the other characters. Not sure why though.

Anonymous said...

I’m taking a break from my vacation planning to read some more stuff here and make a couple of comments.

We knew from the pilot that this island was something different, mysterious, and scary, but “Walkabout” was probably the episode that made everyone sit up and take notice. Like most everyone, the ending caught me completely off guard and I had figured out the “Sixth Sense” less than 10 minutes into the movie. (I spent the rest of the movie watching Bruce Willis’ character’s interactions to see if I was right and asking my husband every few minutes if he had figured it out. He didn’t until right before the big reveal at the end and found my bugging him quite annoying. I don’t blame him. Lol)

I agree that Rose’s transition from a rather saintly, nurturing, motherly type of season 1 to the short tempered, don’t darken my doorstep type of season 5 was unfortunate. It was clear this season that Rose has no real attachment to anyone except Bernard now. Perhaps she has seen so many die; she doesn’t want to be close with anyone anymore, so she and Bernard have gone off by themselves. Or perhaps when she thought she was dying of cancer, she was (like many who are faced with their mortality) making the effort to be closer to God, but now that she has been cured she no longer feels the “need” to be as saintly and her real personality is showing through. Whatever the reason for Rose’s change in character, I suspect this year’s finale will be the last time we see Rose and Bernard. Funny, at one point I thought Rose would be a main character, but that never happened.

The triangle would have certainly had a different flavor if Sayid had been part of it instead of Sawyer. Having listened to the commentary for the pilot, I gathered that was what was originally planned by the writers. Knowing that, I rewatched the pilot and a few of the subsequent episodes and could see from the way they had them interact that their intention was to have Sayid and Kate have an interest in one another. So what happened? Who knows. Maybe they saw a spark between Holloway and Lily in the pilot and decided that they might work better. (The moment she took his gun and he grabbed her arm was where I noticed it.) After all, they changed the Sawyer character from a New York fast talking Prada suit wearing con man to a southern redneck as a result of Holloway’s audition, so why not change the members of the triangle before anyone got too invested. They’ve made a lot of changes along the way because of the actors and the way they clicked (like Ben and Desmond) and didn’t click (like Niki and Paulo). Later they decided to hook Sayid up with Shannon because they thought that would be such an unusual pairing, which it was. Well no back pedaling now.

So, no real insights. Time to get back to some other work or perhaps bed.

SonshineMusic said...

What other show is there where you can rewatch it for the nth time and STILL have so freakin' much to say!? Brilliant I tell you!

As to the neckerchief, Jack lost it, but apparently the Others picked it up.

1. When the boar comes charging out of the fuselage it is Sawyer that pulls Kate out of the way and wraps his arm protectively around her. Awww.

2. Charlie's comment, "Really? Last time I heard we were positively made of time." HA and again I say HA!

3. In regards to the big picture issues, Kate and Sayid are the two most level-headed of the survivors. It's really too bad that Sayid never really lived up to his potential. I always felt that he needed to be so much more important as a leader than he was.

4. I wonder what exactly it was about Locke that made Michael so emphatically against him...even before he brought out all the knives.

5. I noticed about Sun being the one picked to babysit, but also noticed the tenderness she has toward Walt and later toward Aaron. I think a big part of this is her yearning for a child and thinking she will never experience motherhood for herself.

6. Jack can barely deal with his own father's funeral, it's no wonder he wants nothing to do with the memorial.

7. I would bet you that the woman Locke talks to on the phone is not actually named Helen. What do you bet he calls her that in a twisted way to try to relive the one good relationship he ever had.

8. Smokey comes out when Kate is trying to set up the transceiver, startling her and causing her to drop it. Yes, I think it came primarily for Locke, but was it also disturbing their plans to get off the Island?

9. I LUV the part where Sawyer brings over the personal effects to Claire for the memorial. It's the first inkling we get of the layers he will show and the man he will develop into over time.

And now to try to shut off the part of my head that is racing with Lost theories :)

Katey said...

I'm definitely going to post more tomorrow, but I'm too tired to say much now but I do have a few quick thoughts.

I guess I'm one of the few people who don't like Locke on this blog--I'm so sorry Nikki! Don't hate me but I HATE Locke. Seriously with such a passion. I've said this a million times elsewhere but, I feel sympathy for him, I feel pity for him, I can root for him in all the right places and I totally understand his complexities and I think he's an awesome character in that the writers created quite a gem in him--but none of that changes the fact that as a "person" I absolutely despise him and loath him more than any other on the show! I was so relieved to find out he was actually dead. I think it was just how pitiful he was from the beginning, always the pawn and the tool even though he was "special"--it just made me cringe everytime he went off on a spirit-quest especially now knowing for certain that all of that was just a set up by the Man in Black to create is seat of power for the "future". Anyway...that was my rant. I still enjoy the episode because, as you've all said--it's wonderfully written. But this is definitely not one I'll be watching too many more times after this. :/

@FRED: The Marshall was not unsympathetic to Kate? Ehh, I got a different impression...especially from the scenes like the one in Exodus Part I when he explains "why he needs so many guns". I have never wanted to see someone suffer so much in my life. Grrr. But even then, I still find him fascinating.

I love Sayid, but I actually wasn't impressed by him until these past few seasons--I feel like broken Sayid is a very powerful part of Lost. I think it was important to show that not all the characters are progressing forward--what with all the duality in this show, while some characters have been working themselves up out of their holes, there had to be some sinking deeper and Jack and Sayid have been the two big ones in this past season and honestly, I love it. It's made me feel so much more passionate about Sayid's character. It just feels so much more...believable to me to see what he's become because unlike the other characters, especially juxtaposed with Sawyer who looked like the murdering hooligan in the beginning--Sayid really is a killer at heart unlike the rest. He really has the stomach for it. He can take it. He's not evil by any means--but he's a killer. He's cold and calculated and it just always seemed to me that he wouldn't be as good a character until he'd succumbed to that side of himself and born it to its depths and into the very lowest points of himself--the Sayid who "doesn't do that kind of thing anymore" from season one I was always slightly disappointed with. I feel like now he can really progress. He's hit his bottom, he's faced the music. Now where's he going to take it?

I can't waitttt for season six!!

Gah, but we're rewatching now, I can't think about that.

J.W. said...

"So why doesn't Ben smoke?"

Whether good or bad, Ben's supposed to appear intelligent, and whether right or wrong, most people view smokers as less intelligent.

Anonymous said...

I have attempted 2 previous comments that haven't appeared, so I will keep this one short as a test comment.

It can be argued that Locke is wrong (even if it turns out he or his surrogate was around at the time) when he says that backgammon is the oldest game in the world. It is senet the Egyptian "passing game" that may predate backgammon's ancestor game Ur by 500 years. Senet's rules have not survived but it is speculated by archaelogists that it evolved to become an allegory of the passage of the soul into eternal life in the underworld.

Susan said...

@Sonshine music:
2. I thought Charlie's comment was rather stupid. Yes the Losties are made of time but Jsck was referring to the smell of the bodies and their becoming boar dinner.
6. Loved your comment about the memorial -- I never thought of that before.
8. Also your comment about Smokey disrupting Kate's task.

@Katey: Some of the stuff you wrote about Locke sounds like it came out of my own head :) I don't hate him as a TV character because it makes for good stories, but as a person he is way down on my list.

The Shout said...

The final shot of Locke staring through the flames gave me chills. I can't decide if this was intentional foreshadowing as Nik mentioned, or just the writers trying to give Locke a sinister air.
I remember in the early days there was much dicussion on whether he was a good or bad guy. There's certainly an ambiguity in the way he's presented in the first season.

ashlie said...

After rewatching Walkabout, I'm definitely more sure about the whole Man in Black is Smokey thing. Did you notice the part where Kate and Jack hear rustling in the jungle and think it's the monster/boares only to have Locke come out? Just like in Season 5 when Ben summons Smokey and tells Sun that what's about to come out of there is something he can't control, and out walks Locke. Not to mention the whole Polkaroo that Locke pulls when Ben goes to be judged by Smokey (Nikki, as a fellow Canuck I am confident you'll understand the Polkaroo reference!) I have more notes at home, I'll have to post more later...Or get my notes at lunch and continue doing nothing at work...

Jazzygirl said...

"Why doesn't Ben smoke?" Well, my first thought was that because it's not clear that he's good or anyone...especially to himself. It's been the heart of his character from the very beginning. And we STILL don't know! LOL!!

joshua said...

THIS was the episode that made me go, “WOW!”

Me, too. Absolutely. Even still, this one is unquestionably in my top ten. OK -- top five.

maybe Vincent is Jacob!

Hmm... never thought of the possibility. It makes a sort of sense, particularly if you consider the possibility of Vincent being killed in the crash. But wouldn't that possibility be negated by that webisode "So It Begins" wherein Christian sends him over to Jack to wake him up?

Also: I love the foreshadowing of the wheelchair being used to move firewood for the burning of the fuselage. So awesome.

NecieDee said...

Are there theories of Jacob appearing in the form of the dead(ish)? I have it stuck in my mind that it's the MiB that's most likely presented himself as Smokey, Christian, etc. If that's right (as far as we can guess) why would we think Vincent is Jacob and not "Esau"?

Other than that I do see that he's light in color, and that at this point he's more of an observer than a destroyer or manipulator.

I DO buy that there's something very non-canine about him now, and I never saw that before.

Marebabe1 said...

Y'know how the soles of your shoes get scuffed up and worn, pretty much from the first day you wear them? Notice in the scene right after the crash, when Locke wiggles his toes and realizes the miracle that has happened to him, he reaches for one of his shoes to put it on, and we can clearly see that the sole of that shoe is perfect and brand-new, never walked on. When I first saw that scene, I thought, "Couldn't the wardrobe people have paid closer attention and let Terry O'Quinn wear some shoes that look real, with a little mileage on them?" It was a clue that I think even Sherlock Holmes would've missed! The shoes looked showroom new because wheelchair-bound persons tend not to put a lot of wear and tear on their shoes.

SonshineMusic said...

@Susan, re: Charlie. When I said Ha! I wasn't referring to the statement per se as to the deeper resonations that statement has now with season 5 and the time travel and the fact that they are rather made of time.

@Marebabe: I love that catch for Locke's shoes! I caught a couple of more obvious clues, such as Randy commenting that on a Walkabout people go around gathering food...ON FOOT. I was kind of like, well, duh, but when you're watching it the first time, most people are thinking what a jerk Randy is rather than what he's actually saying. (At least I was :)

A couple other things I noticed.

Claire mentions a couple times that the engaged couple on the plane were really happy. It struck me and my sister that she would say that because they had the very thing she wanted and lost. :( Poor Claire.

When Michael asks Kate why she was in Australia and then Locke hushes them because he hears rustling she's probably thinking, "Saved by the boar"

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Katey about despising Locke, but I didn't (on initial viewing) until much later, when it became clear that he was sabotaging everyone's attempts to get off the island (starting with whacking poor Sayid on the head when he was getting a radio signal). Okay, fine, the island helped you personally, but is there any particular reason you have to destroy everyone else's chance to go just because you don't want to? Selfish S.O.B.

I really, *really* started to hate Locke when he shot Naomi. I have to admit I'm pleased that he's "morally, ethically, spiritually, physically, positively, absolutely, undeniably and reliably" DEAD (as the Munchkins so eloquently put it). And not coming back.

At the point we're currently watching, however, I found him quite intriguing and a real asset to the group.

Susan said...

OK gotcha Sonshine Music...too bad Charlie missed out on all the time travel.

Another clue about John that I missed -- when he mentions the paralyzed man who climbed Everest (or something like that).

Batcabbage said...

First off, I loved how everyone ran from the boar in the plane, like it was godzilla or something. That was fun. This was the episode that made me a fan. When Locke first throws the knife and says 'We hunt!' - that was what converted me from 'Hmmm, that quiet guy is interesting' to 'Who the hell is this guy?!'. Rewatching the opening of this episode was quite touching, seeing the look on Locke's face when we now know that he's walking again for the first time in years. Locke's been my favourite character in Lost ever since this episode, and I'll be mighty unhappy if he stays dead (but that's something for a season six discussion, not 1. :)

EvaHart said...


I totall agree with the therory of Jacob appearing as the dead(ish), although I thought it might be smokey or 'the island' that was manifesting as them:

1.Obviously Christian
2.Boone in Lockes visions
3.Ana Lucia in Eko's dream
4.Libby when she appears to Michael (although he was off island when this happened)
5.The whispers- Duckett to Sawyer
6.Ben's Mother
7.Harper to Juliet, although there is absolutley nothing to suggest she is dead I always felt like she didn't seem real when she spoke to Juliet and that she was some manifestion of guilt....
9. Probably more i just can't think of anymore at the moment

Matt said...

Re: the theory on Vincent being Jacob. Given the webisode of Christian and Vincent that Joshua mentioned, and Nikki mentioned in the ep 1 blog post, it doesn't make sense to me that Vincent is either Jacob or MaybEsau. Christian (whatever he is) would not need to tell either Jacob or MaybEsau what to do. Maybe Christian, or MaybEsau, has some power to influence Vincent, but Vincent is still a living dog. Also, I don't find it insignificant that Vincent is WALT's dog. Walt is very special; maybe that has rubbed off on or somehow influenced Vincent. Walt seems to attract birds and - I think, if I remember it correctly from when he's reading the Spanish comic book - polar bears. Thus animals.


2. Although I see in your second post you were referring to something deeper, I'll just chime in that I thought Charlie's comment was really funny.

4. I haven't thought about this as much re-watching, but the first time around I always felt that Michael was trying to get his son to like him from not knowing him. Since Walt liked Locke, Michael saw Locke as competition. Also, the show definitely portrayed Locke as creepy/weird in the beginning. So I think there's a large part of "I don't want my son hanging around that creepy man who happened to be on my plane." And Michael is to some extent a new and protective father at this point.

7. I largely agree but had a slightly different take. I think Locke picked someone who happened to be named Helen to call, based on her name, in order to try to relive his real relationship as you said.

8. That's interesting, something I didn't catch. But more than just "stop them from getting off the island"; if they do get a distress call out and get rescued, that typically means a big rescue party and lots of attention on the island and lots of new visitors and explorers. And from the S5 finale, we know MIB despises visitors.

Robbie said...

The episode commentary made me laugh when Damon (i think) said that Jack and Sawyer's flashlights could represent a certain body part of theirs, and that it is interesting to note that Jack's is incredibly tiny while Sawyer has this massive flashlight.

Fred said...

This is a dumb idea, but here goes. At the end of Walkabout, we have the scene of everyone getting along while the music in the background sings about 'washing away" supposedly sins/the past. Then it ends on Locke, looking really creepy. Why not just suppose this is 'Esau'. We don't have to suppose continuity of Locke. Afterall, 'Esau' may have been setting up his con from the very beginning, as when Locke met the smoke monster. (This also fits nicely with the theme of Bad Twin, the idea of two identical characters). Seeing it this way would explain away an inconsitency many viewers noticed in the character. The real Locke is still around, and won't pass away till Ben gets to him in New York.

One final point. Will Locke revive? Doubtful, but there is that Malkin girl, thought to be dead and she comes back to tell Eko she had talked to Yemi. We also have miraculous revivals: Rose on the beach, later Charlie after being hanged. But I can't see the point of Locke returning from a story point of view. (Maybe if we have another scene like Desmond and Ms. Hawking, after he turns the key, we might see Locke in someone's vision). Otherwise Locke may become the bad guy, the bad twin.

Anonymous said...

Allthough I noticed it each time right away when I first saw it, it annoys me everytime again: The new set of teeth the actors get themselves all along the way. I liked Lockes's teeth better when they were is own. Since he has changed them I always have to stare at them and it distracts me totally from the story. He is my favourite character! First Analucia got new teeth, Naveen changed the lower row of teeth but the crown for the worst thing that could possibly happen to perfectly fine teeth is what happened to Sawyers'! I like the acter so much, but I can't stand his uberwhite unnatural smile in the last episodes of season 5. In fact I'm not a dentist, actually an Optometrist, but that is another story: when it come to the lovely spectacles they made Sawyer wear, I looove it.

Anonymous said...

PS: what I noticed (besides the teeth) as well is that the actresses (esecially Kate) look totally different, I bet they changed the Make Up artists. She wears perfect Makeup, it is soo different to the look she has later in the story.


Anonymous said...

When we see Locke in his office the first time, at the end of that scene he calculates. What is stunning is that the last sound the machine makes before the next scene comes up is the same sound that everytime appears right before smokey emerges.

Batcabbage said...

One thing I forgot to mention: I never connected Locke's boss Randy The Complete Arse with Hugo's boss Randy The Also A Complete Arse. Seriously, I never suspected they were the same person. I feel foolish for that, but there you go. Really hated Randy in this ep. Also in the Hugo ep where he hassles Hurley for taking chicken pieces (what's the guy gonna do? It's right there! Tempting him!), but much more so when he hassles Locke. What a complete bag of various tools.

Ali Bags said...

@ BatCabbage - in a bag-of-tools fight off between Randy and Radzinsky, who'd win?

Ali Bags said...

Oh ...and @ anonymous, I noticed the perfect makeup too. On the night of the crash when Jack and Kate are talking by the fire, Kate is wearing perfectly applied eye liner (which believe me is pretty impossible to do for yourself, and even more impossible to keep unsmudged through a plane crash and the aftermath! Maybe Shannon helped her reapply it?)

Batcabbage said...

@Ali: Wow, that's a hard choice. If we're talking 'who's the bigger bag-of-tools', I'd have to say Radzinsky. Ever since Brother Justin (I can't think of him any other way) first mentioned him blowing his brains out, he's intrigued me, and when I met him (so to speak), I hated him to the point of irrationality (some awesome grammar there, Me!). Randy's a douche, but Radzinsky was a prick. So I say Radzinsky would be the biggest bag of tools! And not even useful tools, just allen keys and that thing that measures the gaps between things. That kind of tool bag.

Jenn said...

Before "meeting" Radzinsky, I thought he was going to be TOTALLY different. I thought he'd be some kind of stoic hatch-man pioneer who unfortunately went crazy and ended up on the ceiling.
When we met him, I thought,
"Are you kidding me? This guy is a TOOL!" But I seriously thought that I was just being hyper-critical of the guy and that I was alone in my thinking. It's nice to know that Radzinsky's tool-ness is of common opinion.

Ali Bags said...

Now for my latest 'brilliant' theory.....have you noticed the similarity between the names Randy and Radzinsky? Du Dum!

poggy said...

@J.W. (and the "then why doesn't Ben smoke" question in general): "Whether good or bad, Ben's supposed to appear intelligent, and whether right or wrong, most people view smokers as less intelligent." Weeeelll nice to hear that right after I had my post-dinner cigarette! XD Honestly I see Ben's rather clean, nerdy exterior as simply a more "modern" take on the villain: the villain who is pretty much straight edge, collected and possibly celibate is as much of an established trope as the hedonistic, mustache twirling one. Also, Sawyer is someone we are *supposed* to see as a villain in the beginning, so he smokes, pretty much like he would have been wearing a black hat in an old western. Ben isn't supposed to give such distinct signals - let's not forget that in his first appearances we (and the Losties) had no clue of who he really was, giving him "the black hat" would have spoiled the game straight away.

@NecieDee: off the top of my head, one instance that makes me go Vincent=Jacob would be him digging up Montand's arm, which might have been a warning to the Losties? Like, "beware of Smokey"? Another option, in my opinion, is that he would really be neutral, if not some sort of link between the two sides of the war, just like Anubis was the god managing the passage between life and death and Cerberus was the guardian of Hell - both of them are on the threshold rather than belonging to this or the other world entirely.

@Fred: Yeah, it always struck me that that last shot of Locke is really creepy, both in terms of soundtrack and cinematography. I remember I went on expecting some sort of villainous turn from him for most of S1, and then forgot about it... except that I was right in a way, lol. I'm not sure Smokey might have bodysnatched him so early in the story, though; I think it's implied he takes control of dead bodies, which is probably why the Others want the bodies of their dead back from Dharma. I think they cremate them or make them "unusable" in some way.

@Batcabbage: Here, have a virtual high five for calling Clancy Brown's character Brother Justin! Carnivàle will never be missed enough.

Matt said...

When John is playing the game with walt he explains the rules of the game and the tmo sides one is black and one is white this sybolizes Jacob= White and Evil guy= Black and the losties are apart of their game

Nikki Stafford said...

Hey all: Really interesting discussion! And wow on the possibility of Vincent being the Man in Black. It makes senese, actually, if he's related to Christian (I always think of that scene in the mobisode when I think of Vincent, and yet didn't link it the way Matt did, which I should have).

And Locke having a deceitful purpose from the beginning... hmm... that's really good stuff, too. They certainly made him seem menacing, which takes on an entirely different meaning now.

I'm really fascinated by those of you who hated Locke! I know Locke lost a lot of fans in season 3 when he just sort of wandered around the island like a complete tool -- "Hey, let's blow up the Flame and all the Dharma booklets that would probably tell us what this is all about!" "Hey, I'll sit in here and play computer chess when I'm supposed to be watching the prisoner!" "Hey, let's blow up this submarine!" -- but he redeemed himself in the following season, and in season 5 I just loved him. I think Terry O'Quinn is so magnificent, he could be playing Satan and I'd love the guy. :)

But... is anyone else missing Ben terribly in season 1? I cannot WAIT to see him in season 2. :)

Batcabbage said...

@Poggy: Virtual high five right back atcha, my friend! Every time I watch the 2 seasons of Carnivale I get sad that we'll never see the end of that truly original and excellent show.

J.W. said...

@Marebabe1: good catch with the shoes! I was just looking at an old issue of Lost Magazine, and it mentions that this one was one of the clues deliberately put into the episode to set up the twist ending. Another is that all the shelves at John's place are only wastehigh.

SonshineMusic said...

@Nikki: is anyone else missing Ben terribly in season 1?

Ah, my Michael Emerson, I cannot wait for your appearance ::sigh::

Re: Vincent/MiB/Jacob/Smokey

I really don't think that Vincent is either MiB or Jacob. Of those three possibilities I lean a little more toward Smokey.

In regards to that, I don't think that Smokey is controlled by either MiB or Jacob. It seems more like it is some sort of free agent of the Island. It's more impartial the way that it judges people (Eko, Locke, Ben). It doesn't seem to necessarily work for either side, but independently. Sometimes it ends up working with one or the other, but is mainly separate.

Katey said...


Yeah, I understand that Locke's did some good things here and there, and I respect him for that--but the thing I just hate so much about him is how weak he is emotionally. I mean he's got all this knowledge and skill, yes. He can take down boars, fight of evil monsters and apparently commune with a large, floating landmass--but he's the one character out of this bunch who never seems to make any progress emotionally and never faces up to anything in his past--he has to con Sawyer into killing his father, the very root of everything he claims holds him back. And on top of that he doesn't even appear to try very hard, he just comes up with a nice, easy way of getting someone else to deal with his problem and then picks up where he left off. And he just seems sooo egocentric, telling everyone what their problems are--if only people knew what he had hiding in his closet. I could deal with the fact that he's had an incredibly hard life and has issues because of that if he put more effort into working through it and didn't act like he somehow understands the secrets of the universe because he's missing a kidney. Grrrr! just comes out. =P I really do feel bad for him, it just doesn't change the fact in my mind that he's a really pathetic character in the long-run. I feel pity that he tries so hard to be the "special" one, but beyond that, there's just never been much attachment to him for me. It's just one of those things! And I rarely hate characters. He is literally the only character in all of Lost that I genuinely loathe. I do love Terry O'Quinn though! That I agree with and think he's an absolutely brilliant actor--it's an objective hatred I have for Locke, I swear it! I just can't swallow a character who doesn't stand up to their own baggage.

As for Ben though--I totally know what you mean! It seems so empty waiting for him to appear! I LOVE Ben's character. He's the guy I loved to hate when we were supposed to hate him and I love to love now that we know who he really is. I just always loved him. He's brilliant. He's sadistic. He's completely genius and, despite the fact that he's basically a tool now, like Locke has been--the thing that makes me appreciate him is that he knows it and it only fuels him the more. Locke was just oblivious to the day he died that he was stumbling around in the jungle as a pawn in some ancient game of King-of-the-Hill. Ben always knows what's going on and when people are using him and even when he's on the bottom of the food-chain, he still manages to unseat people with his awesome mind-games and manipulation. I still can't decide if he's a "villain" or not by common standards--he's not a good guy, but neither is he necessarily evil or working against the main characters--it's more like he's just completely and holistically out for himself. I love that.

Marebabe said...

@J.W.: Was that found in the very first issue of Lost Magazine? I have every single issue except #1.

J.W. said...

@Marebabe: No, it was one of the later ones. (I apologize, but my magazines are at work). The issue showed pages of the script for Walkabout, and when John is revealed to be in a wheelchair, it mentions some of the clues put in there for fans to pick up on. Wish I had my magazines with me to give you an exact answer!

Marebabe said...

@J.W.: From your mention of script pages in Lost Magazine, I knew I could quickly find it, because the "Black Box Flight Recorder" feature is always the last thing in each issue. It's in #4, May/June 2006. The text also mentions an EMS unit. That one had me stumped, because to me, an EMS unit is an ambulance. (?!) I was at a loss on that one, so I quickly got out the "Walkabout" disc and zoomed thru the episode to look at all the flashback scenes. The funny thing is how I was scrutinizing the backgrounds in a way I never had before. I even checked the vending machine behind Randy in the break room for Apollo bars! Anyway, I learned that the EMS unit must be the thingy on the night stand in Locke's bedroom that sort of looks like a stereo receiver but isn't. I was unfamiliar with that piece of equipment, which explains how I missed it. I hadn't thought of this before, but I now see that a re-read of my Lost Magazines will go nicely with this re-watch of the episodes. Thanks for your input!

Nikki Stafford said...

Marebabe: I remember the first time I saw this episode and I saw him with that device and I thought it looked like some sort of medical equipment, but then immediately forgot about it. At the end of the episode I realized he was paralyzed and thought that must have been a TENS machine (which I think is similar to the unit you're referring to; it's a machine that hooks up to the muscles and works them when you can't actually move them, so they don't atrophy). Every viewing since, I see that machine and think again how brilliant this episode was, that there were SO MANY references to his paralysis but we're so caught up in the awesomeness of the story that we don't figure it out. :)

Azá said...

Part 4:
• Hurley and Sawyer fighting - strange how no one will punch Hurley and funny how Sawyer and Hurley have respect for each other in future seasons.
• Locke entering numbers in his old job returns the sound of the smoke monster!?
• Just what did Locke see in the jungle! - Arghh!
• Jack see's an apparition of his dad and then Locke appears. Is this Locke the MiB?
• The guy for the walkabout tells Locke he has been in his 'condition' for 4 years!
• "I'm supposed to do this, this is my destiny" regularly spoken phrase, perhaps Jacobs touch has been embedded in him?

V said...

Nikki, This is my first post but I've been a fan a long time.

It always seems so strange to watch all these early episodes where none of the characters know each other. Especially since we know so much about them! And it's also weird to see them all in such clean clothes. It really jumped out at me when Kate, Sayid, and Locke were talking about the water problem. They are all wearing white shirts.

Something new I noticed was that Kate told Jack she's a vegetarian. Does her character stay consistent with this? Do we really never see her eat boar? Maybe this is why she told her husband "I don't do taco night!"

I got cracked up when Jack and company went to check on the source of noise in the fuselage. Jack was using some sort of tiny pen-flashlight while Sawyer had a huge floodlight. I'm surprised Sawyer passed up the opportunity to make a comment about his being bigger!

I also enjoyed when Hurley and Charlie went fishing together. That was the beginning of a great friendship.

Marebabe said...

Nikki, I like your idea about the TENS unit, because while Locke was on the phone with Helen, he reached over and TURNED IT OFF. It's not a thing that one would leave on all the time. It would only need to be on during a patient's daily muscle therapy session. Good call!

Susan said...

I think Kate lies just for practice. In Tabula Rasa we see her enjoying bacon and eggs in farmer Ray's kitchen, then next episode she tells Jack she's vegetarian. I alo don't think she has a friend Beth who loves Drive Shaft.