“Tricia Tanaka is Dead” is a Hurley episode and it does not take too long to find out who this new character Tricia is and what happens to her. But before that let’s look at Hurley’s flashback
Hurley is with his father working on a car. His father tells him “hope is never stupid” and “you have to make your own luck” and leaves Hugo/Hurley with a candy bar while he goes off to Las Vegas to find work. His father is gone for years from the family. Even though his mom told him not to eat candy, we see Hugo taking a big candy bite as the scene ends.
Next we see Hugo being interviewed for the evening news. He has just won the lottery and Tricia from the news wants an upbeat story about how all the riches have changed his life for the better. But since winning the lottery, just the opposite has happened. His uncle died, his mom’s house burned down, his girlfriend left him for his best friend etc. As Tricia interviews Hugo, she is annoyed at Hugo’s negative response to her upbeat questions. When she leaves to take pictures of the Mr. Cluck’s restaurant, that Hugo has just purchased, the restaurant is blown up by a stay meteorite.
After many years the Hugo’s father has returned to help his Mom straighten Hugo out. You see… Hugo thinks the lottery has cursed him and he wants to be rid of the money thereby ending the curse. His father takes him to a palm reader who tells Hugo he is cursed because of the numbers “4 8 15 16 23 42” and that he must be cleansed by taking his clothes off and washing them in some weird concoction. Hugo is suspicious and asks the woman if his Dad put her up to this. At first she is offended but he offers her 10,000 dollars and she admits the fraud.
Hugo’s Dad apologizes for the stunt and tells Hugo to give the money away except for enough so they can finish working on the car; the same one they started when Hugo was just a boy. It looks like Hugo wants to do this with his Dad, but first he intends to go to Australia where the cursed numbers were his friend Lenny discovered the numbers.
On the island:
Charlie is still in shock that Desmond believes he will die soon. Suddenly Hugo sees Vincent the dog holding a skeleton arm with a key attached. After he follows Vincent into the jungle he finds a VW bus that contains a dead driver who worked for the Dharma initiative. The bus won’t start so he gets Jin, Sawyer and Charlie to help him push it down a hill, where he is successful in getting the engine going. He drives around happy that he has defeated his bad luck and can finally do something fun.
This was just a fun episode. No deep meanings other than Hurley Dad believed his son could make his own luck and Hurley believing the only luck he had was bad. This was reinforced when his Dad left the family and Hurley’s lottery winnings only brought about disaster. This is a common theme on Lost.. fate versus free will.
There were a lot of funny jokes. This included a running gag, with Roger the Dharma “Work man” skeleton. And then later with Sawyer drinking Dharma beer that was old and smelled funny.
Hurley is a praying man which we never saw before and his prayer was quickly answered (with Sawyer’s help).
We also saw that Sawyer regretted pushing Kate away with his inability to say his was sorry. At the end of the episode Sawyer was alone drinking his beer while the other couples on the beach (Jin/Sun, Charlie/Claire) enjoyed some time together. Sawyer watched them with a sad expression on his face.
Nice to see the Losties happy for a change (except Kate who was looking for Rousseau to help her save Jack and Alex).
Cool song played on an 8 track tape was Shambala by Three Dog Night.
The woman used tarot cards to read Hurley. Another reference to the Solataire character I mentioned on the Jack episode. Solitaire was the in the James Bond movie Live and Let Die and used tarot cards to read people. She also had powers similar to Achara from last weeks episode.
How did they not come across the bus before?
Would an old rusty bus laying on it’s side really start after all those years (the gas did not leak out).
How did the bus driver die? Why did no one from Dharma look for him in the jungle? Is it Yemmi (just kidding).
What happened to the road they were building?
Where was he going with all that beer? Maybe to the swan station to stock the pantry.
How did Kate walk into the jungle and find Rousseau in the dark without a map? Kate is known to be good tracker, but she has never known where the woman lived. Although Kate did find the location where Benry was trapped in a net by Rousseau.