And again, it would seem that Smokey is the one who can't penetrate the ash. But if he was imprisoned in the cabin, how did we see him so many times around the island? Who was really imprisoned and/or protected in the cabin?

I want to keep an open mind about this, because several LOST bloggers whose opinions I respect have toyed with the idea that we're going to get a switcheroo pulled on us, and that the Man in Black is really the "good" guy (I can even force myself to see the possibility in how he has been "disappointed" by everyone, and how sympathetically he talks of John Locke, and how Locke was the only one who realized he wanted to lose his life to gain his soul), and Jacob is the "bad" guy. Or that perhaps both are bad, having "used" humans and robbed them of free will at times to prove their own points and play their own little game? Like I said, I'm leaving my brain open if things start to slide this way, but right now, the God-and-Devil symbolism with respect to Jacob and his Nemesis is just too strong for me to ignore. That said, we know Jacob's followers, Ilana's group, have been recruited personally by Jacob, and probably even told to be on 316. But as Lapidus tells Sun, "They say they're the good guys... I'm not buyin' it either." So once again, you just never know.

And for now, that's where we have to patiently be satisfied to leave it until next week. More answers ARE coming. Soon enough, we won't have anything left to ask, as this show will end its run. For now, I can wait as they continue to leave me with impossible debates and unanswerable questions.

The Numbers: Not a lot of instances (saw and heard referenced a couple of "4s," but nothing that really stood out). Have they finally been left behind? Are they still applicable?

Deaths: Juliet, due to injuries; Bram and 3-4 of his soldiers, via Smokey Power; Sayid???

New Questions Raised

  • What's with the spot of blood Jack checks in the mirror while on 815?
  • What do the Others need to speak privately with Jack about?
  • Did it work, or didn't it work? Which timeline / version of events contains the reality?
  • Was Desmond really on the rebooted 815?
  • Where is Christian Shepard's body/coffin? Did Oceanic just misplace it, or is there a more sinister or mysterious explanation?

(TO BE UPDATED SHORTLY: The Complete List of Questions from the series so far, which ones have been answered, which still open, etc. We'll revise it each week after each successive episode.)