Follow along! The episode guide to “Numbers” is in Finding Lost, pp. 113-119.
Until now, we’ve just seen happy fun-time Hurley… that all changes with this episode. It’s strange to think there was a time when we didn’t know Hurley was a millionaire, or that he thought he was cursed, or that we didn’t know his beloved Ma, or that we didn’t know he was in a mental institution. In this episode it’s still not clear – was he in the hospital or did he work there? The weird comment he makes to the reporter about putting his family through a lot lately clearly referred to him being in the hospital, but at the time it wasn’t clear.
Fun things I noticed:
• I thought at first the Asian reporter who asks Hurley the questions was meant to be Tricia Tanaka, but she’s being played by a different actress.
• Hurley in the gold chains and Hummer will never cease to crack me up.
• OMG! Smokey attacked Hurley’s house!! Hehe…
• I’ve noticed this before, but Jack always looks like he’s about to have a giggle fit when he’s in scenes with Jorge Garcia.
• This is possibly the loveliest John Locke moment of the series. My heart melts every time he turns over that cradle. And yet… it makes me wonder if Locke already realized just how important Aaron would be. Remember how he was in Claire’s eerie dream in “Raised by Another”? There’s always been a connection between Aaron and Locke. I wonder if it’ll be realized in season 6. (Remember that when the group splits in season 4, Claire will go with Locke, not Jack.)
• I could never figure out why Hurley’s shirt didn’t catch on fire as he was holding it over those flames.
• UPDATE: I forgot to add this in when I originally posted it, but if you go back to the beginning of "This Place Is Death," where Montand is standing on the beach as Danielle is trying to talk to Jin, Montand is listening to the numbers being read over and over. I've turned the audio WAY up on it, and listened to it with headphones, and there is no doubt in my mind that it's Hurley's voice reading the numbers. Did he actually cause his own problems? I remember being convinced after that that there would be a scene where Hurley would head up to the radio tower and create the transmission in 1977. But then it never happened...
Things that have new meaning:
• I wonder why we never see Diego again. It’s Hurley’s brother, and his family is obviously close-knit. He’s not there when Hurley gets off the plane and is reunited with his family for the first time post-crash. He’s not living in the mansion with the Reyes family, yet in this episode we hear Diego’s moved back home to live with his mother. So why doesn’t he continue to do that? Why did the writers just make him disappear?
• Lenny tells Hurley that he’s opened the box. It could be a reference to the hatch – that great unopened box that will soon unleash everything on the island – but it could also refer to something bigger. In recent seasons fans have wondered what Hurley’s purpose is? He’s the guy with the numbers, and they’re integral to the island. He’s one of the Oceanic 6. He’s clearly important, but what’s his link? Why does Jacob visit him?
• Charlie tells Hurley that he’s acting like a lunatic, and only now do we know just how much those words must have hurt him.
• Sam Toomey’s wife tells Hurley that he makes his own luck, which is what Hurley’s father will later tell him in “Tricia Tanaka Is Dead.”
• Claire mentions that Locke should have a show where he fixes up houses. Locke sort of chuckles, but we’ll later see that he was actually a home inspector, so he really DID know something about houses.
• Locke tells Claire that he’s good at putting bits and pieces together, and he’s the one who begins piecing together the mysteries of the island before anyone else. Even if everyone else disagrees with what he says…
• This is the biggest discrepancy in Rousseau’s story from what we later see in This Place Is Death. She tells Hurley that they looked around the island for weeks, and found the tower, and after that the sickness came. But we know now that the “sickness came” the day they arrived on the island, right after they went down to get Montand. Are we to assume they went down to get him, and emerged appearing to be OK? And then they got sick later? The fact we don’t see what happens in between would suggest it happened pretty quickly.
• Locke believes in luck, and adds that he believes in a lot of things. I found this really interesting, considering that it’s hard to pin down Locke’s belief system, as he says. He seems to be familiar with the bible, but when Eko begins telling him a biblical story in season 2, he acts like he doesn’t know it. It’s not clear if he’s religious or pagan or agnostic. I really liked this line.