In addition to the mirrors and reflected dialogue, opening-eyes were prevalent, too. The first image of the show involved Locke's eyes opening in the daytime following surgery, and the first image of the first scene following commercial was Jack's eyes opening at night on Hyrda Island. Looking forward to finding out whether the levels-of-consciousness and opening-eyes have anything to do with the final answer to the story.

 

Dr. Nadler, I Presume?

 

Great to see Bernard the Dentist, who three years earlier did emergency oral surgery on one John Locke (following his crash, you see). The connections between these characters are endless. Bernard also recognizes Jack from their flight and… does he seem to  know something? His mannerisms are almost like he's trying to put Jack on the right track, tell him something without telling him straight out. "Weird, huh?... Hope you find what you're looking for…" I got the same vibe from Bernard during the conversation he had with Juliet, Sawyer and Kate at the end of last season. He asked Juliet if she was sure she wouldn't stay for tea. He seemed to know there wouldn't be a "next time." I don't know whether "love," the final answer to it all, has given Bernard more insight in a Charlie type of way, but I suspect that his devotion to Rose has something to do with his calm, his knowledge, his peace.

 

At the Dock

 

This wasn't the first time we'd seen John Locke put a bomb on a submarine. And just like that previous time, "Locke" is wet. This has been a crazy mystery for me since "The Man from Tallahassee." If you need your memory refreshed, in that episode, Locke took the C4 he'd found in the Flame station and snuck down to the sub Jack and Juliet were about to leave on, per their agreement with Ben. He went onto the sub dry. When he is seen again, confronted on the dock just before the sub explodes, as he apologizes to Jack, he is dripping wet. That always bothered me (and I'm not the only one). What need was there for him to be in the water at that time? Why go for an unnecessary swim? Could this long-standing question mark finally have an answer? Is Locke/Flocke somehow toggling between timelines? I certainly don't see how it's possible or even likely, but at long last there's at least a parallel, a mirror, a wet Locke at the docks blowing up a sub.

 

We of course gleaned something else from Flocke's little swim - it's not some aversion to water that keeps the MiB from being able to smoke up and cross the ocean. I had pretty much already gathered that, as he had been able to cross streams on the island, and was shown standing in the surf the day after the Ajira crash, but some folks' theories die hard. I think it's more a factor of some rule of the game that he can only go so far in smoke form. It already seemed like he can't go very high, as evidenced by the relatively low sonic perimeter (he can't just fly over it). Or perhaps his smoke form just doesn't materialize over water. Either way, we just know he can't use his smoke form to fly off the island (or even to the smaller island), but that getting wet (at least getting wet in human form) isn't the reason why. Now having ash dumped on him? That might be another story, as none of us have forgotten that Hurley's still carrying around that pouch of Jacob's ashes. Unless of course those are now turned to mud from Hurley's own swim out of the sub…

 

I'm confused about one little portion of the MiB's plot. I don't feel the need to rehash all of it because Jack did that for us, and he had it exactly right. He gained their trust, and got them to do exactly what he wanted them to do. They would have been truly fine letting the timer tick down. The timer, made from a dead guy's watch, was only for their freak-out benefit anyway, to get them to panic and act (which was good, because it played into the old joke of why bombs in movies and TV shows always conveniently show you how much time you have left - why do that?). Just like Michael couldn't put a gun to his head and die, and just like Richard couldn't blow up himself (or Jack or Hurley), nothing would have happened if this bomb had been left alone. So what is it that confused me? Well, how did the MiB know that Jack would need to look in his backpack within four minutes of boarding the sub? Jack only did this because Kate got shot and Hurley couldn't find the first-aid kit (duh, it was right there above the sub driver's head). Had they not had that medical emergency to tend to? No need to look in the backpack, meaning the bomb is not found, meaning the timer ticks down to zero, meaning it doesn't go off, meaning nothing happens. Oversight? Or did the MiB know something? Did he somehow arrange for Kate to need medical assistance? Or did he rig the timer to only start ticking down from 4 minutes once Jack opened the backpack?