'Lost': Characters Reunite, and a Conclusion in Sight?

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"It's so nice to have everyone back together again," says Fake Locke on this week's Lost, as survivors are finally reunited after being separated since Season 4 (three years in island time). And the reunion is sweet. Jack and Claire share a touching brother-sister moment. Jin and Sun finally find each other...and can both speak English.

This show was more traditional than other recent episodes. The flash-sideways timeline focused on most of the members of Flight 815: Sun and Locke end up in the hospital (Sun clearly not happy to be on a gurney next to Locke); Kate and Sayid are apprehended by cops Sawyer and Miles; Jack and Claire meet up in the law firm of Sweetzer and Verdansky to hear Dad's will—Jack learning about Claire's existence for the first time. Meanwhile, Desmond creepily lurks around, attempting to unite our survivors in his quest to return them to the island (quick note to Claire's mom: you should have done a better job teaching your daughter about stranger danger).

The real action took place on the island, where the plot is quickening and our characters are clearly on a path to some sort of final, definitive battle scene. All the survivors, with the exception of Jin who is captured by Widmore, find themselves in Fake Locke's camp. Sawyer hatches a plan to escape, instructing Jack to gather Hurley, Sun, and Lapidus and meet Claire and him at the Elizabeth (Desmond's boat, originally Libby's). Claire ends up tagging along and is easily convinced to abandon Fake Locke, even though he's the "only one who didn't abandon" her and they've been hanging out for three years. All aboard. Destination: Widmore.

Jack has a change of heart. He chats with Fake Locke, who essentially echoes Jack's point of view from earlier in the show. Fake Locke says he only chose to impersonate Locke because he was "stupid enough to believe" he was on the island for a reason. The juxtaposition set up in earlier episodes like "Man of Science, Man of Faith" is reversed. Before jumping off the Elizabeth, Jack tells Sawyer that leaving the island doesn't feel right. That when he left the last time it felt like a part of him was missing. He gets it—Fake Locke wants them to leave...so maybe that means they're supposed to stay. Jack swims back to the island only to find Fake Locke and a bombardment from Widmore's crew. Fake Locke carries him away from the bombing, telling him not to worry. "You're with me now."

So is Jack "the last recruit?" Or...as the next episode's title foreshadows, "the candidate?" As the only candidate currently advocating for Jacob, will he be able to resist Fake Locke, whose voice apparently has a similar power to Jacob's touch (both Dogen and Claire warn that once he speaks to you, you're on his side). And is Lost really going to make it that easy for us—is this "Jack as candidate" set-up too obvious?

Did ya hear that? Moment of the week: In the ambulance, after being hit by Desmond, Locke mutters that Ben can contact Helen. "We were going to get married," he says. Does this mean he's reverted to original timeline, where Locke was abandoned by Helen?

Far-fetched theory I hope comes true: When Fake Locke, Jack, and company get bombed, Jack seems to momentarily lose his hearing. But that hearing loss is permanent and allows him to resist Fake Locke's wiles.

Props of the week go to: Sayid, in advance. Because I don't think he killed Desmond, though ordered to by Fake Locke. Perhaps he really listens to Desmond when he says that Nadia wouldn't want Sayid to kill to bring her back. Maybe he still has a heart.

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