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Who can we trust?   Ben and Widmore are both lying.  Is either one lying for an ultimate good?  Who’s the good guy? Here’s the recap of episode 5.07: The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham  locke-hang

The episode opens in typical enigmatic LOST fashion – we have no idea where we are or who this person is.  Turns out to be Caesar, the guy who gave Jack condolences in the airport for losing his friend (Locke).   He finds some interesting-looking papers, and a shotgun, and is then joined by Ilana – the cop? agent? woman who was escorting Sayid in handcuffs at the airport and on the plane.  Ilana tells Caesar they have found a man who wasn’t on the plane, and wasn’t one of the ones who disappeared.  They stride past the Ajira plane, which doesn’t look like it has just crashed onto the Island, to the beach, where we see Obi Wan Kenobe John Locke.

The next morning we see Locke looking at the main Island, so we know that the Ajira plane has landed on the smaller Island where the Hydra station is located (think polar bear cages).  Locke spots 2 boats – the same kind that we saw our stranded Losties in while they were time hopping and getting shot at.  He learns from Ilana that the pilot and ‘some woman’ ran off the third boat in the middle of the night.   In typical LOST fashion, Locke tells this perfect stranger that he remembers dying…

And we see Locke spin the frozen donkey wheel of mayhem again.  He is spit out in Tunisia – like Ben was – and pukes – like Ben did.   He is taken to a clinic, where he is being watched by Matthew Abbadon, and his broken leg is violently reset with the help of a wooden dowel in the mouth, some pills and some questionable water.  Locke wakes up to see Charles Widmore by his bedside, only he doesn’t recognize him – Locke met Widmore four days ago, but Widmore was 17 years old.  Widmore claims he was the leader of the Others, who protected the Island peacefully for three decades, until he was exiled by Ben.  Widmore believed that Ben also tricked Locke into leaving the Island, until he realizes John is there to convince our Oceanic Six to go back.  He then offers to help John, provides a files on the O6, a passport, and plenty of moolah.

There’s a war coming, John. And if you’re not back on the Island when that happens, the wrong side is going to win.

Widmore goes on to tell John that he is deeply invested in the Island, but not to reveal to the O6 that he is helping him.  Widmore reassures John that he is special, and introduces him to Matthew Abbadon and a wheelchair.

First Stop:  Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic – Sayid

Sayid looks as though he is atoning for his sins by building houses for the needy.  He predictably says no to John, that he had been manipulated for two years by Ben, and wouldn’t go back.  0 for 1.

Second Stop:  New York, New York – Walt

Walt seemed to sense John’s presence before he saw him.  John doesn’t try to coerce Walt, and this scene is very sweet.  Walt tells John he’s been dreaming about him – that he’s back on the Island, wearing a suit, and there are people all around him trying to hurt him.  John spares Walt the news that his dad is dead, and we see Ben lurking in the background.   0 for 2.

Third Stop: Santa Rosa, California – Hurley

Hurley is drawing an Egyptian landscape – pyramids and sphinxes (last time we saw Hurley art he was painting an igloo scene with Eskimos).   Hurley thinks that Locke has died (think Hurley seeing Ana Lucia, Mr. Eko, Charlie- he’s used to it).  John is starting to give his spiel, and Hurley would seem like an easy yes, but Hurley gets spooked by Matthew Abbadon, who had visited him in the hospital right after the crash, claiming to work for Oceanic.  Hurley tells John that “that guy is evil, don’t trust him!”    0 for 3.

Abbadon reminds Locke now that he visited him in the hospital right after he got pushed out the window by his father, and encouraged him to go on a walkabout – which is the reason Locke ended up on flight 815 in the first place.  Locke wants to know what Abbadon does for Mr. Widmore – he says he gets people to where they need to go.

Fourth Stop: Los Angeles, California – Kate and Aaron

Kate is also a no answer – but no big surprise there.  Kate believes that Locke wanted to stay on the Island and wants to go back so badly because he has no one to love.  Locke confides in Kate that he did love someone – Helen, but “it just didn’t work out because I was so angry and obsessed.”  Kate spits back, “Look how far you’ve come.”  Ugh!! Have I said how much I hate her?!    0 for 4 & 5.

Fifth Stop:  Santa Monica, California – Helen’s grave & Jack

Locke’s conversation with Bitch Kate spurns him on to find Helen, only to discover that she died in 2006 of an aneurysm.  Abbadon comforts(?) John by insisting that if he had been there it wouldn’t have changed anything; Helen’s path led her here, and John’s path will lead him back to the Island.  John thinks he is implying that everything is inevitable – even if John is supposed to die.  Abbadon says he does have a choice – but John doesn’t see how his death could be a choice.  Is Abbadon encouraging Locke’s suicide?    Ben kills Abbadon, Locke escapes and winds up in Jack’s hospital with cuts and bruises.  Jack is still practicing, but we see he is well into his downward spiral, headed for the header of the bridge.   He is only slightly scruffy and slightly boozy.    In our standard Man of Science vs. Man of Faith argument, John insists it was fate that brought him to Jack’s hospital, while Jack insists it was just probability.  He tells John that he isn’t important or special, it is only a delusion he has.   Locke pulls his hat trick:  “Your father says hello”, which eventually leads Jack into the end of his spiral, getting him to purchase a plane ticket to Australia.  0 for 6?

The Final Stop:  Westerfield Hotel – John Locke’s death

This is the best and my favorite LOST scene yet.  John writes his suicide note to Jack.  After John’s many failures, Jack’s words finally got to him, and he’s given up.  He pulls an extension cord from a bag (Angel’s Hardware), and ties himself a noose. In the nick of time, Ben bursts in and stops John.  He reveals that he has been watching everyone, and (like Widmore claimed) is keeping them safe.  He claimed he was trying to protect John by killing Abbadon, and that Widmore is a dangerous man who is using John to get back to the Island.  He goes on to say that he moved the Island so Widmore wouldn’t find it, and John could take the lead.  John can’t get over his failures, until Ben tells him that Jack bought a plane ticket.  Ben helps John down, and begins pulling the noose down from the ceiling (does he already know he’s going to kill John?).   Ben gleans from John that Jin is alive and he has his wedding ring.   John also spills the beans about Eloise Hawking, who Ben claims to know.  Is this why Ben snaps?  Ben strangles John with the extension cord, cleans up, takes the ring.  “I’ll miss you, John.  I really will.”

Back on the Island

Caesar is in the Hydra station, reading something in a folder.  John tells him a bit about the D.I.  Caesar tells John about the people on the plane that disappeared.   Caesar himself saw a “really big guy with curly hair” (yay!) that disappeared, and others on the plane saw others disappear.  John tells Caesar he might know how he came to be here, and asks for the passenger list.  Caesar tells him that the pilot took the passenger list when he ran off with the third boat.  So John can’t find his friends, but Ben is among the injured:  Caesar asks if he knows him and Locke replies, “That’s the man who killed me.”

Ben’s Motive

What was it?  Did he go there to prevent the suicide but cause the death?  He had rubber gloves and a cleaning agent.  Did he bring those with him – suggesting premeditation? Perhaps to get back to the Island, John had to die, but not commit suicide. Or is Ben truly evil?   Did something John say cause Ben to snap and kill him?  He seemed to lose it after John told him about Mrs. Hawking.  Or did Ben need the info before murdering him?

Echoes

Everything is coming back full circle.  Other than the obvious – the proxies Mrs. Hawking talked about – the coffin representing Christian Shephard, Charlie’s guitar, etc., there are other things that remind me of the beginning.  They may mean squat, but here they are:
–Locke eats an orange in the pilot episode, and he eats a mango now that he’s back
–Ilana reminds me of Ana Lucia – looks wise, and she also seems suspicious of everyone. And she’s bossy.
–The Faith vs. Science argument between Jack and Locke we’ve seen lots before
–The wheelchair Locke is forced to ride in

No Wonder Locke Fails

–Sayid speaks of love when John visits him.  Sayid suggests Locke only wants to go back to the Island because he has nowhere else to go.
–Abbadon constantly brings up the question: “Isn’t there anyone I can look up from your past?”
–Kate assumes Locke has noone to love, and has never loved anyone.
–Jack, insists Locke is never and will never be special, and is just “a lonely old man that crashed on an island.”

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