Thursday, November 26, 2009

4.06 The Other Woman

Follow along! The episode guide for “The Other Woman” is in Finding Lost — Season 4, pp. 74-82.

Still a misguided and shoehorned-in episode a season later, “The Other Woman” feels like some spec script that someone sent that had NOTHING to do with the rest of the series and they thought “hey, let’s run with it!” This late in the game, there wasn’t a lot of time for a throwaway episode, but this was it. Juliet’s flashback didn’t reveal very much about her character. The whole “You are MINE” thing with Ben never really finds fruition later. There seems to have been zero indication from anything we know later about Widmore that he’d ever warned Daniel and Charlotte of the Tempest about to blow. We could assume it just came from Daniel's journal, but even then, why wait until the last minute? It makes no sense they would have just sat there for as long as they did, playing memory games on the beach or doing experiments in a clearing, if it really was about to go up. We never hear anything about the station later. Maybe season 6 will make this some crucial and pivotal episode in retrospect. But I doubt it.

Fun things I noticed:
• When Juliet cleans up, she has curly hair, but on the island, it’s straight, whereas Kate is the opposite (straight off-island, curly on). It’s like the island is Juliet’s own personal flatiron.
• Ben: “Did that rabbit have a number on it?” HAHA!
• “You’re asking me hhhhhhhwhy?!”

Things that have new meaning:
• Knowing that Charlotte grew up on the island, I wonder if her mom might have mentioned the Hostiles to her. If you watch the scene where she clocks Kate from that perspective, you could see why she wouldn’t have a lot of trust for Kate.
• I said this in my S5 book, but the “you look just like her” comment from the psychiatrist is probably a reference to his mother, but I wonder if it could be a reference to 1977-era Juliet. (In which case, she looks EXACTLY like her.) Juliet was the one who took care of Ben after he was shot, nursing him and then handing him over to the very people who took him to the Temple and gave him his island salvation. Could it have meant Juliet?
• Ben says to Locke that he doesn’t know how Widmore could possibly have known about the island. Liar.
• The fight between Juliet and Charlotte seems to be completely forgotten when they’re time-jumping in season 5 and tromping through the jungle together.
• That kiss between Juliet and Jack goes nowhere. Item #42 in this episode that has no significance for later eps.


Marebabe said...

It’s always seemed strange to me that Goodwin and Harper are both last names used as first names. In fact, I used to think that referring to Goodwin as Goodwin was like referring to John Locke as Locke. A lot of people call themselves by their last names. (It’s very common in the military.) I wonder if there was a particular reason that the writers came up with these odd first names for the Stanhopes. Some hidden meaning?

In the last episode, captive Miles told Kate: “I’m exactly where I want to be.” And in this episode, Harper said to Juliet, regarding captive Ben: “He’s exactly where he wants to be.” Now, we’re used to Ben’s scheming and plans within plans, so this statement about Ben seems very normal. But what about Miles? Did I miss something concerning his character? Why is he pleased about his incarceration in the boathouse?

It’s really too bad that Goodwin and Juliet had that cozy little death-picnic on the beach. Because before long Goodwin gets a “clothyard shaft through his wishbone.” Sorry. I’ve been a fan of Warner Bros. cartoons since I was a little children, so that Daffy Duck quote just slipped out. ;)

poggy said...

I wonder if it could be a reference to 1977-era Juliet. (In which case, she looks EXACTLY like her.)

That's what I thought, too. Also, it might very well be a mix of the two.

That kiss between Juliet and Jack goes nowhere. Item #42 in this episode that has no significance for later eps.

Yeah, and I'm still angry at the writers for dropping the Jack/Juliet/Ben angle and injecting her into the ol' triangle :[ I know this is an unpopular opinion (and I DID like Juliet and Sawyer together while they were onscreen), but Jack and Juliet had a buildup since the cage episodes in S3, just like there had been hints of Ben's attraction to Juliet before this episode. It's like they used 4x06 only to make that subtext canon... and then dropped it without a second thought. IMO the Lost writers do pretty well with established romances like Desmond/Penny and Sun/Jin, or even Juliet/Sawyer, where they conveniently skipped all the "getting to know each other part" and jumped to when they are already living together. But I've never been overly enthusiastic with how they deal with "dynamic" romance - couples getting together or splitting off. Meh. Excuse the rant, I'm headachey and cranky :)

It makes no sense they would have just sat there for as long as they did, playing memory games on the beach or doing experiments in a clearing, if it really was about to go up.

...I'm really starting to consider that there has been some major U-turn in the plot after this episode. Because it's really inconsistent with what happens later in the season.

Fred said...

I kind of wonder had there been no writer's strike if we'd have had more go-nowhere episodes like this? You know, just filler to satisfy the hour schedule demand for Wednesday nights. Actually, while I was pretty pissed with only 14 episodes for this season, the contraction did begin to tighten up the plot and made the series more exciting. WOW, was what I thought with Season 5.

Loved Jin's response to Jack when he questions Jin and Sun about Charlotte and Daniel going off--"you told us they were friends." Yes, inconsitent Jack. also with the rain when they go look for Charlotte and Daniel. How do they keep those torches lit?

Also if Ben is where he is supposed to be, then how did he call Harper's ghost, spirit to see Juliet? (I take it it was the smoke monster, but again how did he call it)? Could Ben have gotten out of his locker room basement without needing Locke to free him?

Juliet going on a mission to kill Charlotte and Daniel fits "Esau"'s plan of destruction. Had she killed them, the gas would have been released (or so we are led to believe) and everyone would have died. Just what Esau said to Jacob on the beach: they come, they fight, it always ends the same (i.e. death).

Yeah, the rabbit joke is a good one.

Not only is Ben a liar, you can't trust any of his written information. Ben gives Locke a folder (red in colour) which he says contains info on Widmore. Yeah, bet it doesn't contain that Widmore lived on the island. So this must have been prepared even before Locek and company arrived in the barracks. Talk about Ben setting up a plan in advance!

What did Dharma work with, that computer program looked definitely like DOS. Also the BC22=open on the screen (BC is 23 of the alphabet, one of the numbers).

@Nikki: Yeah, I was wondering if Juliet was lying when she kissed Jack, seeing how easily she fell for Sawyer.

Susan said...

Nikki your description of this episode is spot on. I've never really liked parts of this episode much and you put it into words for me.

A couple of episodes back I stated that I hope Ben remembered Sayid as the guy who shot him because it makes the story more intersting. In the same way, I hope the her in "you look just like her" is Juliet, because once again it's more interesting than Juliet resembling Annie or Ben's mom. (By the way I also hope Jin is the one who taught Charlotte how to speak Korean sometime in those 3 years.)

I love the ending here, with Ben's "see you guys at dinner" and the horseshoe players standing there with their mouths open. Classic Ben!

Rebecca T. said...

@marebabe: It’s really too bad that Goodwin and Juliet had that cozy little death-picnic on the beach

Yes! Another death picnic! I totally missed that. Good grief.

Mr. Friendly should never sport a mustache again.

Juliet: "It's very stressful being an Other." HA!

Ben: "For you and me. .... I guess I should have made that clearer." Ha Ha!

crazyinlost said...

I didnt like Harper from the moment she walked in the door to talk to Juliet, and then when she spoke up, ew, that tone!

@Nikki- I thought she meant '77 Juliet also, but how would Harper had known that? Also, if this is the case, does that mean Ben had been stalking Juliet for a very long time and sent RA to Miami to finally "collect" her? Creepy!

Where was Juliet staying before Ben gave her a house?

Do the whispers that precede Harper mean that she is dead? Have we ever seen someone still alive show up after whispers? (Besides Richard, who doesn't really count as dead or alive).

@SonshineMusic-"It's very stressful being an 'Other', Jack".
yes, I love that line too!

@Nikki-"This rabbit didn't have a number on it, did it?" Boy, everyone beat me to the good lines this time!

Has John really been carrying around a dollar bill in his pocket for the last 3mos?

Why does Ben need a "list" if Mikhail can just get info from The Flame?

Ben is giddy as a schoolgirl when Juliet shows up for dinner!

Yeah, what is the deal with Dan and Charlotte? Did they really avert an event in progress, or did they cause an event so they could (or needed to) prevent it? Nikki, you are absolutely right, this storyline went nowhere!

Why does Jack tell Kate he loves her, and like 2 days later he kissed Juliet? Sometimes these romances remind me of highschool. "Oh, you like me today? Ok, I'll like you today, but if SHE likes me tomorrow, then I'll drop you and like HER tomorrow! But you'll probabally like someone else tomorrow!" It's just rediculous. I agree with you, poggy, that the writers got the established couples right, but the other ones, yech.

Susan said...

I'm guessing that Jack was still in love with Kate but trying to get over her, and that if there were no writer's strike they would have done more with that storyline.

Nikki Stafford said...

Susan: You bring up an excellent point, actually: The writer's strike probably changed a lot in the way of storylines... even though they only ended up losing a couple of hours. I think this is the only storyline that was dropped so completely, and that's why it stands out the way it does, but you're right. That definitely could have been a reason for it.

Anonymous said...

Harper = harpy.

It could be that the "crisis" at the Tempest was one that could have been averted at any time. I always had the impression that Charlotte and Dan were there to render the gas inert and the pressure build-up was just a necessary part of that process. They chose a time to leave when nobody would follow/annoy them because they knew they were going to have to work quickly once they had set the process in motion.

I like the idea that it was Jacob (using Harpy's body) who tried to stop them by sending Juliet with instructions to kill. As far as we know, Ben has no way to communicate with anyone that could help him, and it seems he's been abandoned by his people.

Goodwin's body: maybe Ben had it moved to a more "convenient" spot before showing it to Juliet; that would explain why he's not where AL killed him.

Hunter said...

I saw it the same way you did, studiorose. They were just rendering the gas inert so that Ben couldn't use it. I believe Charlotte even says this. Something like, Ben had used it once before and he's not afraid to do it again. The near release was just part of disabling it. Though, I still think Charlottes and Dan's actions are very contrived here.

Pamalamb said...

@Hunter and Studiorose: I'm glad you mentioned your feeling that Dan and Charlote where not preventing a crisis that was already happening, but the crisis was happening because of Daniel's actions in disabling the gas. That is what I had always thought about this scene. They didn't want Ben to have access to this weapon. I think the "down to the last minute countdown" was just some attempt at making it more dramatic.

I may get some flack for this, but does anyone else think Harper looks a little bit like "She who shall not be named" (the woman from "Expose" infamey)! I never realized this before but while rewatching this episode, as soon as she walked through the door to met with Juliet that was my first thought -- I knew I didn't like her for a good reason!

I still think that the person Harper is refering to when she says Juliet looks just like her is Annie. I think it is Ben's sick attempt to recreate the family he lost - he has kidnapped a replacment child, and now he needs to kidnap a replacement wife.

crazyinlost said...

@studiorose-"Harper = harpy"
Love it!
Also, right on with your thoughts about the Tempest "crisis". Hadn't thought about it like that before.

crazyinlost said...

@studiorose-"Harper = harpy"
Love it!
Also, right on with your thoughts about the Tempest "crisis". Hadn't thought about it like that before.

crazyinlost said...

oops, didnt mean to do that!

@studiorose-yes, but is she DEAD!

tiasabita said...

Pamalamb said: 'I still think that the person Harper is referring to when she says Juliet looks just like her is Annie. I think it is Ben's sick attempt to recreate the family he lost - he has kidnapped a replacement child, and now he needs to kidnap a replacement wife.' Couldn't agree more! Makes the most sense to me. But as Susan said, 2004 Juliet looking like 1977 Juliet would be much more interesting, and it would. I guess Harper and her mole could have been old enough 30 years before to remember what Juliet looked like. Gosh, it could really go either way!

It's hard to imagine anyone could successfully pull off hiding an affair in such a tiny community even without being spied on by a jealous wife! Ben seemed to pick up on the attraction between Goodwin and Juliet but do yall think Harper could have told Ben about the affair knowing Ben would kill Goodwin thus giving Harper some vindication?

crazyinlost said...

@tiasabita-"I guess Harper and her mole could have been old enough 30 years before to remember what Juliet looked like."
loved that one!

Anonymous said...

If you haven't yet, check out the Ack Attack's comments about Harper and her "mole." (She really does look evil.)

And super huge thanks to Nikki for providing the link in one of your books; I've read each recap at least three times and can't wait for her take on Season 6.

@tiasabita: I agree; how could anyone not know about Juliet and Goodwin's affair? Especially when they all seem to know Ben's got the hots for her, which is a much more subtle thing than sexy picnics on the beach where anyone could stumble across them.

humanebean said...

You know, this is isn't the first time this has happened, but once again I find myself in the minority of those who didn't necessarily loathe this episode. It's clunky, I'll agree, and it does set up straw men that don't pay off later ... but at the time, and even in the context of the rewatch, I find this episode just slightly below average.

Perhaps it's because I love just about every moment Daniel Faraday is onscreen. Which leads me to my first point: the map that he reads by the stream. Interestingly, there is a "C" near where the Losties camp is on the beach and the Tempest station is indicated by its Dharma logo - however, there is also what looks like an "H" on the right-hand side of the map. What is this meant to represent? Judging by other maps we've seen, it's about where the Black Rock might be or perhaps even the Temple itself ... but "H"? Hmmmmm....

My feeling is that Harper's comment "you look just like her" must refer to the painting in Ben's house - which everyone on the Island at this time must have seen or at least know about. It looks enough like both Ben's mom and Juliet for someone who had seen it to make the connection. I'm also of the opinion that Harper's sudden appearance in the jungle is perhaps the work of the Man in Black. Jacob might well know that Charlotte and Faraday mean to disable the gas but MIB would be the more likely to want to manipulate someone (with a powerful guilt-inducing image) into killing them both to keep the murderous gas option open.

Blam said...

Nikki (in the book): Why clock Kate on the head with the butt of a gun and render her bloody and unconscious?
I know we've brought this up before, but... How sure would you be that you could hit somebody just so, in the right spot with the right amount of force on the first try to render them unconscious but not do them more severe damage? I bet Ebert has this in his Little Movie Glossary, near the hero (or important character of any kind played by movie star) running through a hail of bullets fired by professionals, although on Lost that, at least, can be explained away by Island mojo. I will stand up and applaud a scene with an inexperienced character having to whack somebody on the head more than once and get nauseated by the violence involved.
Verification Word: horsogi -- What happens when you leave your foal or filly out in the rain.

Blam said...

I have to go give Jason Hunter's website [] a good read-through before this season starts. I'm pretty sure I wasn't aware of it at all before FL4. I'm already behind on Doc Jensen's occasional pre-season essays, which outside of discussion here is really all I check out to supplement my viewing.

Blam said...

SM: Pansmon - Jamaican word for cooking utensils
Good one!
Verification Word: unpicka — The little-known code word in chess that, when shouted within five seconds of touching a piece, lets you select a different piece instead.

Blam said...

Whoops! Those last couple of posts were intended for the comment section to 4.09, although it probably doesn't matter much now.

The Rush Blog said...

Is it possible that the Man in Black, disguised as Harper Stanhope, instructed Juliet to stop Daniel and Charlotte's mission at the Tempest station?