LOST 2.01 Man of Science, Man of Faith (Jack)

One of the biggest questions of our generation is Do you believe in Science or in Faith?  To many this is an either/or question.  But is it possible to be both?  This is a the beginning of that journey for our Dr. Jack Shephard.  In Seasons 1 through 4 (until they leave the island)  Jack is a stalwart man of science, who outright does not believe in Fate/Destiny and certainly does not believe the Island has any sort of powers as says Locke.  He also listens to Hurley explain how the Numbers changed him forever, to which Jack replies, “They’re only numbers, Hurley”.  But by Season 5, Jack has no longer decided to let Science (or his own will) dictate his choices.  He has decided to pursue his call to Destiny on the island.  He will try to change the past, and if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be.

Recap:

I was totally faked out when watching the intro to this episode.  We all wanted to know what was in the hatch of course.  But first I expected to see some shots of the island, then Jack or Locke exploring the hatch to find some old WWII bunker, or maybe a 1950’s style bomb shelter.  But instead we see some guy waking up in his “apartment”.  The alarm goes off, he does a little exercise, checks his email, mixes up a protein shake, takes a shower, puts on some old Mama Cass music, injects himself with medicine gun (wait a minute!, something is a bit odd now!).  Then the record skips, the apartment shakes.  He puts on a jump suit, unlocks the gun case, stares into a weird telescope thing.  We follow the telescope image along a dark passageway of cables and pipes to a mirror at the bottom of a shaft.  With a cool crane up shot (special effect, but awesome) we see the cause of the explosion, Jack and Locke peering down holding a torch.  We are on the Island and this Lost!  Wow!  What a great way to start Season 2.

By now we have seen a lot of Jack flashback episodes, but to me this one is the most important.  It reveals Jack’s most prominent characteristics.  First he has a great need to fix people.  If you have a problem, an issue, Jack wants to fix it.  He is true to this all the way into Season 5, when he wants to “fix” everyone’s suffering on the island by detonating the bomb and undoing the last 4 years of history on the island.  In this case, Jack must choose to fix a woman named Sarah.  She and Adam Rutherford (Shannon’s dad) were in a car crash.  Jack chooses to work on Sarah and Rutherford dies at 8:15.  Sarah quietly says she wants to dance at her wedding.  In a another scene she tells Jack’s it’s okay if she just rolls around at her wedding, but Jack won’t allow that, not if he can fix her.  He tries to but fails, or so he thinks.  He goes running in a nearby stadium where he meets Desmond who is training for a round the world boat race.  He asks Jack what if he did fix her.  Jack says “that would be a miracle”.  Sure enough the next day the miracle happens, she can feel her legs again.

Back on the island, Kate is proud of Jack for giving hope to the survivors who are afraid the Others are coming to get them.  “Live together die alone”, she says in explaining her decision to follow after Locke who is going to explore the hatch.  When she gets there Locke is waiting for her.  He lowers her down, with Kate holding back the fear by using the count to 5 method Jack taught her.  But then the rope slips, Kate drops, and then she hears a noise, she is not alone.  A bright light turns on and she is taken.  Locke follows (we will see his story tomorrow).  Jack is worried for Kate so he follows too.  He discovers Locke’s shoes.  Enters the hatch, but is startled when Mama Cass plays (we can just barely hear a voice warning him).  He sees the computer and is about to touch it when Locke tells him not to.  Locke is held at gunpoint by a man who will shoot him if Jack won’t lay down his weapon.  The man is none other than Desmond, prompting Jack to say… You.

Thoughts:

  • This has to be my second favorite season opener after season one.  So much great character drama, and the big answer to the question of hatch reveal in the first 30 seconds.
  • Jack’s response to Sarah’s question why he runs up and down the stadium steps is classic Jack… “I’m intense”.  So true.
  • When Jack enters the hatch tunnel his key is pulled away from his neck by the electromagnetism, the same force that pulls Juliet to her doom in Season 5 and the reason that part of the tunnel is reinforced with heavy concrete.   We also see a creepy mural with the Numbers and Sickness written on it.

3 Responses

  1. The light coming from the hatch resembles more the light that John saw when he was flashing in time. The light John saw in Dues Ex Machina couldn’t have created the pillar light formation in the sky that we saw in season 5. But Locke says it was the night Boone died and is reaffirmed by the scene Sawyer had with Claire giving birth.

    It’s weird that Sarah is fixed from a paralysis, and Locke is still living with one, but able to walk.

    I wonder why the hatch would say quarantine. Since we learn there is no sickness as such, or is it a result of the hostiles during the purge and the gas they used.

  2. I couldn’t help but look at Desmond in a whole new light after rewatching this episode. From the expression on his face to the things that he said, I felt like he might have been “flashing” at the time. He almost seemed to recognize Jack and know that Sarah would be fixed.

  3. Just to answer the first question. I believe in the whole God thing and still believe in science. Of course they can both exist, I can’t see why they couldn’t. Is it too difficult to believe in the big bang theory and believe that either God made that happen or God came into existence because of it?

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