Look at Flocke's line to Sayid: "What if I told you..." It's the same phrasing he used on Sawyer. Anything you want. In the world. Answers. Love. To find what you had lost. To not suffer anymore. At all. These are the things that appeal to children who are being children in insisting on their way. But again - has Flocke ever truly delivered? Once he did - to Ben. He did build in Ben a desire to get back at Jacob, and made it happen. And Ben now regrets it. 

Dogen's Story (good thing we learned his tale just before the sun set, I guess)

  • He was a banker
  • He got a promotion
  • He got drunk
  • He picked up his son from baseball practice (question: do we know anyone else on this show with a story involving fathers/sons, baseball, and alcoholism? Make you think of anyone to nominate as the next Temple master, perhaps?)
  • He survived; his son either died, was going to die, was in a coma, or a vegetative state
  • Jacob shows up with a hard bargain: I can save your son, but you will serve me in isolation and never see him again. We know what Dogen chose
  • We now know why he cherishes that baseball and gets nostalgic looking at it
  • "The man outside offered [Sayid] a similar bargain." Not identical, though. Sayid's choice at this point is pretty easy by comparison. "Deliver a message for me and you can have Nadia again" is hardly the same as "Come help me save the world but never see your son again though you will know he lives."

Will Dogen live again, having been drowned in the pool? I don't think so, for the same reason the pool didn't work as hoped to heal Sayid. The discoloration/loss of Jacob has caused it to lose those properties. 

Ilana leads Miles, Frank, and Sun out Hurley's passage just in time (puts them on the same path as Jack & Hurley, so we should be able to expect these groups to meet up shortly). While she is doing this, Ben goes to rescue his old foil Sayid, but quickly realizes with horror, you're not Sayid! Run away! Harkening back to when "time" was a major theme on LOST, I enjoyed this interplay:

Ben: There's still time.
Sayid: Not for me [creepy grin].
Could be our old friend now exists outside this boundary that restricts the rest of us.

Ben did tell Sayid he knew of another way out, so I'm not worried that he'll find his way out of the Temple, even if he is separated from everyone else.

"I'm not the one who needs to be rescued, Kate," says Claire. Who is the one? Kate herself? Would she have been killed by Smokey had she not dove for the ladder into Claire's pit? Is Claire going to make good on what she told Jin - that if she found out Kate had Aaron she'd mess her up? 


TWO OMARS?

If you were a bit confused on this one, don't worry. Yes, Keamy's top henchman and mercenary buddy is named Omar. Yes, Sayid's brother has a very similar name, Omer. Yes, they both appeared in this episode and are obviously different people.

TWO WITNESSES?

One last little biblical bone for those still holding fast to a "Flocke is the good-god, Jacob the bad" way of thinking... consider Revelation chapter 11. In which there are:

Two witnesses (Flocke sent two witnesses - Claire and Sayid - to the Temple to deliver messages)

These two witnesses get resurrected from the dead during the reign of the Antichrist (both Sayid and Claire probably died, but are no longer dead).

The Antichrist has been described as "evil incarnate" and as "a man," terms used to describe MIB/Smokey/Flocke.

However... the one who resurrects these two witnesses in the Bible, and who goes on to win and reign benevolently? The Messiah.

Keep your minds open to the potential plot twists, friends.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Question: Should Jack perhaps have killed Sayid when given the chance with the poison pill? Would Sayid be better off? Would everyone else? Compare that question with: Should Sawyer and Kate and Juliet have let Young Ben die when he was shot... by Sayid? Would Ben have been better off? Would everyone else? What do both situations have in common? Jack Shepherd - against his usual m.o. - opted not to act. He refused to operate on Young Ben, satisfied to see how Fate would play that one out. He refused to give Sayid the pill, again opting for "whatever may be may be." In both cases there are no easy answers, though it's certainly fine to argue for erring on the side of, "it's just wrong to kill a kid / let a friend die." But there are still consequences to everything...