Lost 5.05: “This Place is Death” recap

This week’s episode was right back up to speed with lots of on-island action and excitement. We got to see some back story, a heart break, a couple of killings and a little bit of Locke’s fibula. Off-island we stood around, drove for a while, and then stood around some more.

Speaking of off-island, we pick up at the marina, almost where we left off last time. Sun is still watching Kate yelling at Jack and Ben when her phone rings. It’s her mom and her adorable little daughter calling from Korea. She tells the little girl that she met a playmate for her named Aaron. Ji Yeon just wants her mommy to come home. Sun chokes up when she tells her she’ll be there soon. She hangs up before she remembers to have her mother forward her a more recent photo of Ji Yeon. She gets out of the car and, because of the yelling, is able to sneak up on the group. Before anyone else can react she cocks her gun and points it at Ben. Jack tries to calm her down but she is still incredibly angry and believes Ben was responsible for Jin’s death. Ben calmly explains that that’s not true since Jin is alive and Ben can prove it.


On TARDIS Beach, the French are trying to pick up the latest Debbie Gibson single on the radio, but all they can get is a repetition of The Numbers over and over again. The voice sounds eerily familiar to some of us. Meanwhile Jin is trying to wrap his brain around the idea that the younger, saner version of Danielle Rousseau is standing here in front of him. He asks her what year it is, and she tells him 1988. He stands there stunned for a moment, then starts babbling about having to find his camp. The Frenchies are now the stunned ones. “You were on this island before?” they ask. Jin asks them if they saw a helicopter. Montand quips, “First a boat, then a helicopter. Next thing you know he’ll be talking about a submarine.” Jin says, “I wasn’t there for the submarine, duh. But I was on a raft. And a sailboat. And of course the plane. Also, I’ll be talking in almost complete sentences soon. Not bad for a guy who just learned English, n’est pas?” Well, he doesn’t actually say that, but he should. Instead he answers their question that there is in fact a radio tower. They agree that once he gets them there they will all help Jin find his camp, and hopefully, he tells Rousseau, his wife.

They make their way into the jungle following the radio signal. Danielle stops because she felt the baby kick. This leads to a sweet little moment between Danielle and Robert where they tease each other about whether the baby will be an Alexandre or an Alexander. Danielle knows it’s a girl, which is reminiscent of when Claire knew she was having a boy. Robert offers to get her some water, and they all turn to Nadine for the canteen. She is nowhere to be found. Maybe she ditched them because she was sick of all the jokes about how Nadine rhymes with canteen. Actually, she probably was just trying to get away from Montand, who thinks its a bad idea to bring women on a mission since she’s probably off chasing butterflies. But then they hear a strange sound in the distance. Robert asks what it is. Jin tells him. “Monster.”

They head back to search for Nadine and find her pack. As they are trying to figure out who will search where, a tree gets ripped straight up into the air. At the same time Nadine drops from the sky in a dead and bloody heap. Naturally, they all flip their gourds. Jin is the only one smart enough to yell “Run!” They all take heed, dragging Danielle away from the body. Somehow Montand gets separated. See, that’s why it’s a bad idea to take a jerkwad misogynist on a mission. He was probably off chasing a woman to oppress. He catches sight of Smokey whisping through the trees, and then gather together into a giant basilisk-shaped cloud rising above the clearing. Smokey pounces and grabs a hold of Montand by the feet and drags him away. The group take chase and catch up to them as Montand is being dragged down a cereberus vent at the bottom of what looks like it could be the Temple. The whole gang has him by his arm and it looks like he might just be starting to pull himself out of the hole when a tendril of smoke wraps around Montand’s shoulder and the arm breaks off. Breaks! Off! Sleeve and all! The group fall backwards like a winning team at tug-o-war, batting the arm away from them like a gruesome hot potato. They hear Montand faintly call from the hole that he’s hurt and he needs help. Jin tries to stop them but the men are determined and refuse to leave him behind. Jin at least convinces Danielle to stay outside for the sake of the baby. They stand outside for a moment before Jin starts to see a flash beginning. Danielle doesn’t hear it and asks whats wrong, and presumably sees him literally disappear into thin air. Danielle, welcome to the Crazy Express. Enjoy your journey!


Jin looks around at the Temple, now quiet and apparently abandoned except for him. He takes a step closer to the hole in the ground but stops when he steps on the decaying arm still laying where it was dropped. It’s old looking but not yet skeletonized, so Jin hasn’t leapt too far into the future. I guess Smokey keeps away the boars and the corpse eating bugs as well as the macho idiots. He climbs a hill, finding some water along the way in a leaf, and catches sight of a column of black smoke. Jin has seen one or two just like it and follows it back to the beach. It’s where the French have made camp. Danielle’s music box is playing and there are an awful lot of flies around. He follows them to the bodies of Brennan and Lacombe. From there, he hears shouting and creeps over to see Danielle pointing a gun at Robert. She is saying that the monster made him sick, that he’s not Robert any more. He tells her that it wasn’t a monster, that was a security system guarding the temple. He pleads with her to put down the gun. He loves her and doesn’t want anything to happen to her or their baby. I am actually feeling really bad for this guy. Danielle sure does seem insane. She finally lowers her rifle and we see that she’s still pregnant. Robert lifts his rifle and fires it. Right at her. I can’t believe we fell for that guy’s BS. Luckily, as we learned in Season One when Danielle told this story to Sayid, she had removed the firing pin from his rifle so she puts a bullet into the middle of his lying murderous forehead. I notice there is a distinct lack of Montand in this camp. I wonder if they saved him from the hole, or if he didn’t survive the attack. It’s nice that the island takes us to significant points in the islands history. It’s like Lost’s version of a pensieve.


Danielle sees Jin standing there and exclaims, “You! You disappeared. You’re sick too, you’re a carrier.” Jin takes off into the jungle where another flash happens as he stumbles to the ground. When the flash is finished he picks himself up, probably relieved to be safe, when he here’s the sound of a rifle being cocked. He is told to turn around slowly. Poor Jin is wondering when the heck people are going to stop shooting at him when he looks up and sees that this gun has a Sawyer at the other end of it. Hurray! They give each other the best hug I’ve seen on this show since Hurley was reunited with his mom. The happiness is short lived as Jin checks out the ragtag group and doesn’t see his wife among them.

Daniel, Miles and Charlotte are watching Sawyer and Jin from a short distance and discussing Jin’s sudden arrival. Daniel answers months of forum speculation by saying that the blast must have thrown him in the water and that he’s been moving with the flashes just like them. Sawyer is trying to explain about the flashes-in-time to Jin, but he only wants to know one thing. He’s frustrated and says something in Korean. Then, instead of trying to say it in English, he marches over to the science team and asks Charlotte to translate. Sawyer hilariously and narrow-mindedly assumes he is talking to Miles. Charlotte looks nervous; she apparently hasn’t shared this particular talent of hers with the team. It’s not like herpes, I don’t know why she seems so uncomfortable about it. She tells the group that Jin wants to know how Locke is so sure Sun is off the island. They fill him in on the Orchid run they’re on, and tell him they are going to bring her back. He doesn’t understand why they would do such a thing.

Long Beach Marina, LA: Sun wants to know what proof Ben has of her husband being alive. He tells her that if she will go with him to his see a certain person, he will then show her the proof. This person will also be showing them how to get back to the island. Kate hears this as she’s putting Aaron back in her car, and blows her lid. She realizes that this whole thing has been about getting back to the island, and she has had enough of that nonsense. She gets in her car and drives away. Sayid decides this is a good time to do the same and walks away after warning them that if he ever sees Jack or Ben again “it will be extremely unpleasant for all of us.” That smells a little like an understatement of the year candidate. You’d think Kate would give him a lift. And maybe not peal out of the driveway with a kid in the car. Ben promises Sun that he can have her to the mystery person’s place in 30 minutes or her pizza is free. Also, she’ll get the proof then. She agrees to this arrangement.


The Island 7 are heading towards the Orchid and Jin is offering to go with Locke when he leaves. Locke insists that it’s a one man job, but that he will bring Sun back. Daniel and Charlotte are chatting a bit and he asks her if she speaks any other languages. “Just Klingon,” she says. Oh, be still Daniel’s geeky little heart. She asks if he thinks this plan will work and he says he thinks Locke’s plan makes empirical sense, but says that bringing people back to the island is where “we leave science behind.” Charlotte begins to get dizzy and another flash hits them. They all seem to be experiencing more pain with each flash. Charlotte collapses and Juliet and Sawyer get nosebleeds. Charlotte screams at Jin “Don’t let them bring her back!” In both English and Korean. “This place is death!”

Hey, Ben can drive! Sun nags him about taking longer than 30 minutes. Jack takes this opportunity to apologize to Sun for leaving Jin behind on the boat. She asks if he’s only saying that so she won’t kill Ben if it turns out he’s lying. Jack says that because of his attempt to take Aaron, if she doesn’t, he will. Ben’s like, “Hellloooooo? I’m sitting right here!” He then slams on the brakes and pulls over to the side of the road. Channelling a soccer-mom, he tells them that if they had any idea what he’s been doing to keep everyone safe they would never stop thanking him. Now don’t make him turn this van around! And if they’re going to shoot him, just get it over with, please. They don’t so he puts the van back on it’s way. Jack tattles that Sun is touching him.

Charlotte is babbling. She sounds like she’s skipping through time now in her head the way Minkowski and Theresa were. The flashes are getting closer together so Locke wants to keep moving, but insists they leave Charlotte behind. Daniel decides to stay with her and send the rest of them without him. Sawyer points out that with the flashes coming so close together what if the Orchid isn’t there anymore? Charlotte suggests that when they get there, they look for the well. They give her the old, “Sure, we’ll look for it. As soon as we get the aliens to stop reading your brainwaves, sweetie.”


The gang make it to the Orchid and look relieved to see it’s still there. Juliet goes one better and says “What are the odds that we’d end up in the same time as this thing.” And the Gods answered, “Psych!” and they flash to a non-Orchidy time. Sawyer accuses Juliet of jinxing them. Locke figures that maybe the well wasn’t just crazy talk and goes and looks for it. Sure enough, it’s there. Miles is still wondering how she could have known that, even though it was him who had originally suggested that she may have been born here.

Charlotte is still laying on the jungle floor, looking really frail. It seems that all the time jumping has brought back some memories from when she was a kid. She tells Dan that she grew up on the island as part of the Dharma Initiative. Her and her mother left when she was young and her mother spent a lot of Charlotte’s childhood trying to convince the girl she had made up the island in her imagination. She says this is why she became an Anthropologist, so she could find the island again. Well, no wonder it took her so long. I would have thought Geography would have been a more appropriate major for that quest, but okay. She wants Dan to know something else she remembered. When she was on the island when she was little, she met a crazy, scary man who told her that she needed to leave the island and never come back or else she would die. She says that man was Daniel.

Up at the well, Locke is getting ready to climb down the rope. Oh, John, don’t you know wells are always trouble? Haven’t you seen The Ring? Ok, what about any episode of Lassie? Jin tells Locke not to bring back Sun. Locke tries to tell him he has to bring everybody back, but Jin is very persuasive. He threatens to cut the rope going into the well unless Locke makes the promise. Locke gulps a couple times, probably crosses his fingers behind his back and then agrees not to bring back Sun or his baby. Locke adds a caveat: He will not go to her, but she might still go see him. What should he say to her then? That Jin is dead, and that he buried him. As proof Jin gives Locke his wedding ring. Locke prepares to descend. Sawyer offers to lower him down but John asks. “Where’s the fun in that?” And I have to agree. Nothing sounds like more fun than rope burn and compound fractures. Wee! He gets about halfway down when a flash starts. Sawyer tries to pull John back up but Locke opts to go down, falling hard. Because it ain’t a real episode of Lost until Locke has some kind of massive leg injury. Up above, Sawyer is still pulling the rope, but it is coming from nothing but the cold, solid ground. So, there’s another object that travelled with them because they were touching it. Sawyer looks horrified as he imagines Locke encased in the ground. He actually tries to dig him out for a moment.

Charlotte is back at the creek, coughing up a lung. Daniel is trying to explain that he sent Desmond to find his mother, and that she will help him if she just hangs on. She gets a wonderful smile on her face and Daniel looks encouraged. Charlotte looks at him and says, “I’m not allowed chocolate before dinner.” And takes her last breath.


At the bottom of the well John is thinking, “Oh, so that’s what my bones look like.” One of them is sticking out of his leg. He shouts for someone to help. Luckily, the friendly neighborhood ghost is available. Christian shows up with a lantern and a bit of an attitude. He reminds Locke that the instructions were that Locke was to move the island. Locke stammers out a few excuses about how Ben told him to stay, that Ben knew how to do it. Christian asks when listening to Ben every got him anywhere worth a damn. Christian tells Locke that once he persuades everyone who left to go back, there is a woman in Los Angeles that will tell him how to get back. Locke asks what would happen if he can only get some of them to go back, and Christian doesn’t answer him. All he says is that he believes Locke can do this. John is still whining about how he was told he has to die. Christian throws the word “sacrifice” at him. Locke should be familiar with sacrifices the island demands by now. Christian tells Locke to go give the wheel a little push. Locke has to painfully pull himself up (Christian can’t help him) and get to the wheel on his own. He turns it, appearing to put it back on it’s axis, and as he starts to… teleport? Christian shouts to him to say hi to his son. Locke’s like, “You could have mentioned this back when we had more time to talk about who that might beeeeeeee….”

The party bus is pulling up to Eloise Hawking’s church and when they all pile out, Sun confronts Ben. He hands her Jin’s wedding ring, and says John gave it to him. Jack points out that Ben said he didn’t go to see Locke. Ben says “I didn’t. He came to see me.” Always with the semantics, this guy. Ben tells her that everyone on the island need their help. He pressures her into agreeing to go back with him. Just then, Desmond walks out of the shadows and ask what they are all doing there. Ben figures they are all there for the same reason. Desmond says, “To find Faraday’s mother?” Ben looks like this is a new one on him and heads into the church with mixed look of perplexity and annoyance. But then again, he always looks like that. They all follow him in. Ms. Hawking is there, wondering where everyone else is. Desmond doesn’t say anything but definitely seems to recognize her. She doesn’t seem to surprised he’s there. She figures they will do – for now – and they should probably get started. Started doing what? You’ll have to just wait until next week.


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