What is certain is that he came with plenty of firepower. These mortar shells are apparently GPS-guided or something. What I can't figure out is why he's bothering to fire them at Flocke. Guy can't be killed that way. Heck, he's not even phased when Jack yells to everyone to "get down." Doesn't move. Is Widmore this ignorant of how to kill the Monster? Or, is there even a more sinister answer - does he know the shells won't kill Flocke but will kill those around him? Because that's just mean, even if it's smart to take out your enemy's foot soldiers. But Flocke doesn't care any more for his non-candidate followers than I do for the writers of Lapidus's lines.

 

Regardless of Widmore's allegiance, I remain convinced that he's who Jacob wanted to find the island again, and that Jacob has contingencies for his arrival and actions.

 

Why did Jack jump off the Elizabeth? Why did Sawyer tell him to?

 

First of all, I think we just got the answer to how the MiB has been getting between islands for three years. He views Desmond's old boat as "his" boat. He wanted Sawyer to go gather his candidate friends and get them all on this boat.

 

Why Sawyer can't just leave well enough alone and has to just go taunt Jack with how he never used to be good at taking orders I don't know. I can only assume he's still ticked over Juliet, because she was the reason he wanted to stay on the island, and now that she's gone, she's the reason he's blind to no other plan but leaving.

 

So suddenly Jack is in the place of Locke, but much wiser ("I remember how I felt last time we left, like a part of me was missing." This is a much better answer than, "You're just not supposed to leave" or "Yes you do believe in destiny, you just don't know it yet"). And Sawyer is in the place of Jack - the single-minded, wounded voice of what he thinks is reason, and can't be bothered with those who would stand in his way or tell him his purpose runs counter to his desire.

 

"If that Thing wants us to leave, then maybe it's afraid of what happens if we stay" is the best line of the entire episode. Jack is thinking, believing, weighing, strategizing. He's slowly working it out. This Jack Shephard is never going back to Los Angeles until his work is done.

 

And so he jumps, giving us a perfect mirror to Sawyer jumping from Frank's helicopter and swimming back to the main island. We also get Kate, instead of Jack, as the one yelling, "We have to go back!" But Sawyer is right. They're through going back. There's not enough time left. There can only be going forward now. And what Jack and Desmond share going forward is a deep conviction that anything goes because any path ends in destiny. This is truly faith with Jack. With Dez, it may be even more. He doesn't just believe; he seems to know. Call his conviction "assurance."