Lost 5.13: "Some Like It Hoth" (Part I)

After a run of several jaw-dropping episodes, it not particularly surprising to see the writers deliver a true transitional episode. This is all about moving the pieces around on the board, and as usual, such episodes struggle to rise to the challenge. For "Lost", it all comes down to the character at the heart of the episode.

Miles is the latest in a long line of characters to exhibit "daddy issues". In this case, Miles never knew his father, because he and his mother were supposedly banished from the island by the uncaring Pierre Chang. As a result, he has a rather hard heart when it comes to his father, whom he knows to be on the island. As nearly everyone has guessed since the beginning of the season, Miles' father is the mysterious man who narrates the Dharma orientation films.

This little revelation is a big part of the episode, and because it was so easy to predict, it all falls a bit flat. Also, Miles' attitude towards his father is hardly surprising or unique. Nor is his eventual softening at Hurley's insistence. Considering how the episode could have been a lot more revealing, given Miles' ability, it's shocking how little that ability played into the episode as a whole.

For example, it was already clear that Miles had the ability, so knowing how long he had the ability doesn't add very much to the equation. Knowing that his ability was the reason why he was recruited by Widmore only references what was apparent in the fourth season. It's great to have some clarification about his ability (that he can only "read" what a person knew up to the point of death), but it's never used as anything other than foreshadowing regarding the secret construction of the Swan Station.

It seems very likely that Miles will, due to Hurley's influence and his own desire to connect with his father, reveal the truth and cause the circumstances by which Pierre sends his wife and child off the island. Considering how quickly things are unraveling for the Oceanic Tribe, it wouldn't be out of the question.

The one point of interest in Miles' part was his encounter with the anti-Widmore faction. Bram and his people seem to expect Miles to know how to answer the same code-phrase that Ilana tossed at Frank. This would seem to preclude the possibility that Ilana and Bram are working for Widmore or Ben. That leads to two likely possibilities.

The first possibility is that Ilana and Bram are much older than they appear. When they ask "what lies in the shadow of the statue", they could be speaking out of personal experience. What if this "new" group is actually a very, very old group? They could be very much like Richard and seemingly immortal. They could be trying to take back control of the island as a result.

The second possibility ties into the promotional events that were staged before the fifth season began. This promotion involved a revived Dharma Initiative. If this new organization somehow involved Eloise Hawking, it would begin to connect some of the dots. It would certainly explain her interest in Desmond over the years, and her desire to bring up Daniel in the same unusual physics education.

If it is a new Dharma Initiative, and if Eloise is at the heart of it, then the answer to the question of "what lies in the shadow of the statue" could be Jughead. Eloise would know where it is buried (if she is the oft-mentioned Ellie), and Ilana is clearly planning to take something large and secure it in the process. One would expect that this might finally bring Alvar Hanso back into the mix, and perhaps even his interests in the so-called Valenzetti Equation, for which the "numbers" are variables. (This equation, mentioned in the "Lost Experience" ARG, was related to calculation of the timing for the extinction of humanity.) Hanso was supposedly funding the Dharma Initiative in the hopes of altering the factors within the equation to extend humanity's viability.


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