Apr 14 2010

Lost Review: Everybody Loves Hugo

Published by at 4:15 pm under Reviews,Television

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Hurley-centric episodes are usually pretty full of feel gooded-ness and laughs (like when he set up the island’s inaugural golf course), but seeing as this is the last one we’ll ever see, Lost decided to make it less about fun and more about answers. With only a few hours left, I thank them for that, as the show’s creators clearly know there’s no more time to dick around.

A lot was going on this episode, as we saw every character still on the island outside of Widmore, something that rarely ever happens with the two camps of Not-Locke and Team Jacob split up for the majority of the season. Throw in an alterverse episode, and there was a lot to keep track of.

Team Jacob fractured into pieces this week with Richard dead set on blowing up the Ajira plane so Not-Locke can’t leave. Hurley takes the opposite stance after a visit from ghost Michael who tells him that nuking the plane is a bad idea. But this schism is confusing, because who do you listen to here? Ghost Jacob who apparently told ghost Richard’s wife to stop Not-Locke by any means necessary? Or ghost Michael who says they should avoid such a plan?

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Why hello again, my least favorite character ever.

A not-too-important “answer” of this episode was clearing up the long lost mystery of jungle whispers, which we formerly assumed was the Others just being creepsters, but Michael says they’re the spirits of all those who had sinned and died on the island, and presumably this is the pool of dead people the smoke monster can pull his various bodies from.

But this raises a lot of questions. Does everyone who dies on the island become a restless spirit? Are Boone and Shannon and Ana Lucia and the Dharma-ites roaming around still, tainted with too much sin? And if this IS the spirit pool smokey pulls from, what of people like Locke, who died off island and were brought here, or someone like Ben’s daughter Alex, whose body the smoke monster used to scare Ben straight. Had she really done anything so terrible for her soul to roam the island forever? And I do recall Walt showing up once amidst the whispers, and he was far from dead, and far from the island. Sorry, if I’m getting carried away with the details here, but hey, isn’t nitpicking what Lost is all about?

Soon after the Michael encounter, Ilana accidentally Artz-es herself with dynamite, thus ending her character arc in the most anti-climactic way ever. Hurley blows up the rest of the dynamite on the Black Rock (thank god, I was getting sick of endless expeditions to that ship), and the group splits between those who want to find other means to destroy Ajira (Richard, Ben and Miles who all think more explosives are the answer as smashing the controls with a rock just won’t do) and those who want to listen to Hurley, who now thinks it best to go talk to Locke (Jack, Frank and Sun, who SERIOUSLY still can’t speak English? Someone please tell me what the point of this is).

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I mean she was pretty useless sure, but she deserved a better sendoff than this. 

Hurley’s alterverse episode reveals a man with a much better life than the Hurley we’ve known thus far. It’s unclear if he still won the lottery (would he even know about the numbers in this universe?), but he is rich and does own Mr. Cluck’s Worldwide. But free from any curses and bad luck, he’s maintained his success without incident and done a ton of charity work with his good fortune, hence the episode title, “Everybody Loves Hugo” a mirror of previous episode title from seasons ago.

But his world his shaken when one day he runs into Libby, a mental patient who believes they’ve met and fallen in love in a parallel universe. She sounds crazy, but after a gentle nudge from Desmond, currently on his quest to make all of Oceanic 815 find THEIR Pennys, he goes to the hospital to investigate.

I was under the impression that these “memory flashes” only occurred in moments of near-death, but Libby remembers Hurley while watching a Mr. Cluck’s commercial, and Hurley doesn’t remember her at all until she kisses him. Strange, but OK. Also, with Libby in a mental hospital, does that mean she wasn’t on the plane a week earlier?

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She’s less hot in the alterverse, I’ll say that much. 

I also have a bit of problem with these memory flashes, besides the inconsistency on how they’re caused. All these alterverse episodes are taking place within a week of Oceanic’s safe landing, but all of the stuff that’s happened between the passengers and island dwellers doesn’t happen until months or even years later. Charlie and Claire’s romance, Desmond and Penny having a child, and Hurley didn’t even meet Libby yet at this point after the plane crash. I understand if your mind is crossing over to memories of a parallel universe, but if these are really PARALLEL, these are things that haven’t happened yet. Or are these universes lined up sequentially in a row? I think I’m putting too much thought into this, kind of like the island spirits from a few paragraphs ago. Whew, it’s just hard to let stuff go when you want everything to add up perfectly.

I also have to wonder as to just which universe we want to survive when this all shakes down in the end. If I’m keeping score, the alterverse has created a much better life for a good many of the Oceanic passengers, and if you add in butterfly effects like Hurley’s charitable donations doing good all across the world, it seems like this is the universe we want to be living in. And if you want the whole “lost romance” angle, fine. It seems like Desmond and Hurley are finding a way to connect to their realverse “soulmates” and guess what? In this world everyone’s alive and not in constant danger of being shot in the gut or eaten by polar bears. I say the alterverse really is the better place to be right now.

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Yeah, I’d say that alterverse is working out pretty damn well for Hurley.

In the jungle back on the island, Sayid shows Locke that he’s brought Desmond back with him. Locke takes him out to a well which he says was built by the ancient people who lived here who were trying to figure out why their compasses spun. And to answer your question, yes, ancient people did use magnetic compasses, I looked it up.

Locke tosses a docile Desmond down the well, which I’m pretty sure isn’t that deep and has water at the bottom. Upon returning to camp he tells Sayid “we won’t have to worry about him anymore.” Does he think he’s dead, or was here merely trying to incapacitate him? Either way, clearly Desmond will be back and it seems like kind of a sloppy plan for a demi-god.

The most interesting thing to note about Not-Locke’s adventures this week was his second encounter with a child in the jungle, and one that Desmond could actually see. I believe this kid was different than the one who popped up a few episodes ago (who Sawyer was able to see), as that kid was blond (go here and scroll down for a comparison), so what the hell is the deal here? Was Not-Locke a pedophile in his original life and he’s being haunted by his past sins?

But the most perplexing part of the episode was the very end of the alterverse segment where Desmond absolutely destroys a wheelchair-bound Locke with his BMW, practically grinning while he does it. What the hell? Did he somehow get an electromagnetic flash that in the realverse, Locke’s body is being used as a temple for pure evil? And if so, what the hell does running him over in this universe do? Poor Locke, I think out of everyone in this entire show, this man’s been screwed over the most. He’s dead and a shell of himself in the realverse, and paralyzed and probably dead in the alterverse. The man just can’t win, despite him being the most faithful of all to the island, and I really hope he finds redemption by the finale.

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I believe in you John!





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19 responses so far

  • XenoIrish

    I think alive locke will be very important now that he apparently got his island memories, and that’s why Desmond did it. Locke is the key to whatever he is doing.

    One thing i didn’t like/get in this episode, was Miles dad giving the speech about Hurley in the beginning….shouldn’t he be 27ish years older?

  • http://www.milehighnerds.com Warren

    It seems to me like Desmond is trying to ‘Set things right’ in the altverse by getting Hurley and Libby together and killing Locke. Though why he would be doing that is beyond me.

  • Joe

    Big question at the end, was Desmond trying to kill locke or to open his eyes to the other reality? Could go either way I think.

    Also, Hulry did win the lottery in this AltVerse. He mentioned it on the plane to Sawyer that he wond the lottery. Wonder what numbers he used?

  • NY not NYC

    There is a very fine line between everything coming together and hamfisting it together.

    Does anyone read the “Wheel of Time”? The writer died, but they got a new guy to finish the series. Well, new guy ended like half a dozen mysteries or so in his first book in such a way I had to go back and re-read the passages because I couldn’t beleive things were resolved in such a way.

    And now enter “Lost”. Oh, yeah, the Whispers are the ghosts.

    Bu-BUH?!

    Oh, and you can see the ‘real world’ from the ‘altverse’ when you are about to die. Or are with the one you love (but not if you were already together (see Sun and Jin). Or just randomly.

    The writers are very good at setting up the mystery but their climax is just terrible.

    Oh, and that kid is totally Jacob reborn.

  • Myrmidon16

    @XenoIrish: good call about miles dad. that is by the far sloppiest cameo appearance in the altiverse so far.

    and i agree the ghosts being the whispers is a sloppy excuse, ill have to look where they appear in other episodes to see how it works. and i think desmond was tryin to make locke see the islandverse.

  • jacob

    I think awakened Locke will end up playing a big part in how the locke-ness monster gets stopped

  • LAO

    I am calling it now, Desmond killed ALT Locke on purpose. He wasn’t trying to awaken his memories, he straight up killed him. And not for the retarded reason everyone is saying (Desmond saw Flocke in the MAIN timeline, thought it was Locke doing naughty things, and decided to kill ALT Locke in revenge).

    So why? Here’s why, fuckers:

    We’ve seen that MAIN characters who have died have bled over into their ALT counterparts (Daniel, Libby, and Charlie all have memories of the island life). We’ve also seen Flocke displaying some decidedly Locke-like behavior.

    Now some people say that MAIN Locke is still alive deep down in Flocke’s consciousness. This is stupid because MAIN Locke was deader than dead long before Flocke took his shape.

    So back on track, why is Flocke acting like Locke? Well, if you agree that dead MAIN characters are bleeding over into their ALT bodies, what is to stop dead ALT characters from bleeding over into their MAIN bodies? With MAIN Locke already dead, ALT Locke has to go to the next best thing: Flocke.

    The way to stop Flocke for good is to have ALT Locke bleed into and take over his mind.

  • Brendan

    So Real Locke gets hit by a car…where do you take someone who gets hit by a car? The hospital. Who is the only doctor in LA? Jack Shepard.

  • NY not NYC

    LAO, you are wronger than two boys in a hot tub, as SFC Smith used to say.

    Besides, no one just dies outright in this show if the body is still around. It takes at least two episodes before a ‘dying’ person becomes a ‘dead’ person.

    I think Brendan’s got the next shot down right. Locke and Jack, together again.

    And I still sayt the end of the show is going to have Jacob’s replacement (prolly Jack) and Flocke sitting on the beach, just like Jacob and Esau did at the start of the season.

    Flocke is going to be like, you know how bad I want to kill you, and Jack is going to be like, oh yeah.

    Pow, end of show.

  • Brendan

    @NY
    I’ve been thinking the same thing. I wavered a bit during this season, perhaps thinking it could be Hugo but no. They have built the foundation of Jack/Locke since season one.

    Now as to what the Island is…I’ve got a crazy theory(other than it’s some kind of purgatory)… it’s the source of time on earth. Think about how positively abstract the concept of time is, how do you measure time in matters like lightyears and space travel? Also, time is based on magnetic fields, without the earths rotation, how can time be measured? Whats the source of time? Does a beast have any concept of time or is it merely a part of being human?

    Now the nuke they set off at the end of last season wiped the island off of the map but not the source of it’s power, so time can continue. But in destroying the island they created a paradox in time. How could they destroy the Island in the past if they didn’t crash on the Island in the future? How can they land on the Island in the future if they destroyed it in the past?

    Remember last episode.(the Desmond one) What did all the characters of that episode have in common? (Charlie, Faraday, Desmond and the limo driver/navigator on the boat) They were all able to time travel.(Or is it dimension travel? Time cannot possibly linear nor limited to just one dimension, not with the infinite amount of possibilities and outcomes based on each and every decision each and every human makes….) Add in Richards ability to not age, the white flashes after the Island was moved and ::brain explodes::

  • chelsea

    we know for a fact that the altverse timeline is a month or so later than the island time (the date on claire’s ultrasound, remember?)…

    i’m glad ilana is gone, she was annoying. as soon as she had that bag, i yelled “blow up ilana already!” and then it happened…. and it was satisfying.

  • Zadock

    Frankly, out of the whole episode, my soul issue was a tiny little anachronism at the beginning of the episode:
    How was Dr. Chang/ Miles’ dad/ Dharma Initiative Video guy around to announce/ narrate all of Hurley’s accomplishments, while looking the same as he did back in the seventies. The man should be in his late sixties or early seventies at that point, but he looks like the same, middle aged man he did back then.

    (On top of THAT, he apparently died when Juliet set off the nuke, so that’s weird too…)

  • NY not NYC

    @Brendan

    I like that idea. It’s just completely made up but not really too far out there to be the Dues Ex Machina that the show needs to end / explain everything.

    Except, of course, if the island is time, then who is Esau? Is Jacob the Big Bang and Esau is the Big Crunch? Esau is the ‘end of time’, and when he leaves island, time will end, ruining the world?

    In fact, the more I type it, and try to make the theory fit, it actually holds up fairly well…..

    I think.

    But I did have a drink with dinner, so…

  • DaBus

    I think desmond was attempting to do to Locke in the alterverse what Charlie did to him on the pier. He is making it his mission to let the members of his flight know what he now knows thanks to a near-death experience.

  • Suda

    I still want to see Michael and Walt reunite somehow. Maybe Walt’s powers will allow him to see Michael’s ghost. Also I just realized something. Michael heard whispers and then actually saw Libby’s ghost. I think he may have had the same powers as Hurley.

  • LAO

    @chelsea

    We know for a fact that the date on her ultrasound was her due date, not that day’s date.

  • http://unrealitymag.com Cal

    As soon as I saw the dynamite in Ilana’s bag all moldy I knew it was gonna blow up. There was no other way it could have gone.

  • Mike

    @chelsea & LAO,

    Lindelof and Cuse confirmed the date on Claire’s ultrasound was a prop error – not the actual date, not a due date, just a mistake.

  • Sean

    Ilana = most useless Lost character EVER.
    And she was billed as part of the main cast during this season! WTF!

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