LOST RECAP: What They Died For Better Not Be That Stupid Light


This is a Recap of Lost Season 6, Episode #16 entitled “What They Died For”, the second-to-last episode in Lost history, originally airing May 18th, 2010. Not much left to spoil at this point, the show’s almost over. Ana Lucia was in this episode. TWIST! I ate a KFC Twister when that happened.


This week in Sideways Towne, Jack looks in the mirror and realizes his old football neck is actin’ up again, but thinks nothing of it and sits down to breakfast with his son, Dude From Shine Jr. They share some SUPER BRAN cereal and Jack agrees to come to his son’s concert that evening, and when his son makes him promise not to be weird around his mom, he goes “Ohh…I promise…” and the camera zooms in on his face and he winks and “Wooly Bully” starts playing and it cuts to a montage of Jack doing embarrassing things at the concert (Too late to submit my Lost spec script?)

Elsewhere, Desmond continues Aqualunging it up in the high school parking lot, and when Ben recognizes him as the man who ran down Locke, he reacts by immediately beating the crap out of Ben. Wouldn’t it be funny if the way Ben remembered the island was by having the crap beat out of him, cause that happened to him so oft–oh. The visions just happened. So that’s exactly what made Ben remember. That was easy! (Slogan for Lostples, the island office supply store).

Desmond tells Ben that he ran down Locke for his own good, to “make him let go,” and Ben feels it in his Benbones that Desmond’s telling the truth, and explains this to Locke, who crank calls the L.A.P.D. then decides to visit Jack again with his tail tucked between his wheels. Locke tells Jack that because someone else talked about making him let go, that they’re probably living in a bizarro sideways dimension to a magical island metaphor, and even skeptical Jack seems to be somewhat on board, in a rare but increasingly frequent display of Jack nonfailure.

After the jump, Ben gets Benny, Zoe gets dead, and Jack’s drinking problem gets way worse:

Quick Sidenote: This is the fundamental flaw with all supernatural fiction movies and tv; if this Jack/Locke situation happened in real life, Locke would be an absurd moron for actually thinking that something magical was happening, and would always turn out to be wrong, but movies and tv have to be about special things, not just about dumb people who think coincidences are magic happening, so you’re sitting there rooting for Locke to figure out the supernatural magic thing that’s happening and you’re frustrated when people don’t believe him. In Ghostbusters, you hate the a-hole EPA character for suggesting that the Ghostbusters are a hoax and you get pissed at him when he shuts them down, but in real life, that character would be 100% correct, and you’d be a fool for believing the Ghostbusters were actually catching actual ghosts, because there aren’t actually any ghosts. We’ll save this rant for a rainy day – back to the sunny day* that was last night’s Lost. (*Not very sunny)

The Jack / Locke scene concludes with Locke telling Jack “I think I’m ready to get out of this chair.” Jack responds, “Are you sure? Cause crawling around is gonna be way more difficult.” Locke glares at him for two seconds, and Jack goes “OH! You mean the surgery. Durrr!” Did I mention that Jack is gonna be the new God?


Desmond strolls into the L.A.P.D. office and demands to see the only two detectives in town: Caesar and Dogen’s Sidekick. They bring him to Sawyer and Miles instead, and Desmond quickly admits, “I’m a total fugitive brothah,” and Sawyer casually throws him in jail with Sayid and Kate (Jailhouse Lost Rock!) Speaking of rock, Miles is attending a concert at his dad’s museum that night, and wants Sawyer to go with him. But it’s probably nothing significant, just some small talk to fill the last couple hours in the history of the 900-hour show with 60 billion plots to wrap up.

After the least eventful episode of Oz ever, Desmond, Kate and Sayid are rounded up to go to County — despite Kate unsuccessfully lobbying for Sawyer to let her go because he looked at her that time — but while in the back of the wagon, a strangely calm Desmond tells the other two prisoners that he’s gonna free them as long as they promise to do what he says once they’re free. They both say “Sure but that’ll never happen LOL!” but the vehicle suddenly stops, and officer Ana Lucia uncuffs all of them in exchange for $145,000 of Hurley’s sweet fried chicken bucks. In the old reality, Ana Lucia was shot as a result of a shady deal Michael made with Ben, and now in this reality, she’s the one taking shady deals — it’s so Sideways, Paul Giamatti’s gonna try to drink it!!!

The sideways reality concludes with Desmond handing Kate a dress and telling her they’re going “to a concert”. But which concert?? The same one that Miles and Jack happen to be going to, or another unrelated concert on the other side of town? Why are you going to a concert on the other side of town instead of the one with all the Lost characters, Desmond??? You’re running out of time!!! Also, Ben has dinner with Alex and Rousseau and finds out that Alex views him as a “father figure”. Awww – tears! Ben is so nice in this and all realities.


Well, we know he’s not, so that wasn’t much of a cliffhanger to get you to read the next paragraph. So instead here’s the poster for the movie Cliffhanger:


Meanwhile, this week’s island plot resumes with Ben, Miles and Richard back in action after a three-week break, now strolling towards the Others barracks to grab explosives to destroy the plane (that was SO two weeks ago, guys – why don’t you email me the kittens going down the slide video while you’re at it). Miles feels something in one of the yards and Richard reluctantly tells Ben “It’s your daughter,” afraid he’s gonna be like “Whoaaaa too soooon!!!” but Ben’s touched by Richard’s decision to bury her. Niiiiiceeee Beeeennnn…

They grab the explosives from Ben’s secret-secret room, but are quickly confronted by Widmore and Zoe, who make fun of Ben’s plan to blow up the Ajira plane, because he’s always three steps behind:

Ben asks Widmore how he got back to the island and Widmore explains that Jacob came to him off the island and told him everything, which Ben doesn’t believe because he’s never actually seen Jacob, but Widmore’s like “Oh yes I have,” and they argue back and forth until Widmore whips out the “Yes I have times infinity plus one.”

Uhoh, here comes the smoke monster in a canoe!

And here comes a dragon in a cab!

The group argues about how to keep Locke from coming into the cabin, and every character thinks they can talk him out of it, but they eventually decide on “Richard will get knocked offscreen real fast then Ben will immediately throw Widmore under the bus.” The plan works perfectly:

Locke tells Ben he needs some help killing some people, and also needs Ben to pick him up from the airport next Thursday, but only if it’s not a big deal (though he just says the big deal part to be a good friend, he seriously is counting on Ben to pick him up). Ben agrees with astonishing speed and reveals that Widmore is hiding in his secret room, and he and the monster walk back inside to stare down Zoe and Widmore and turn the island into this.

Widmore tells Zoe not to say anything so Locke immediately slits her throat, because Widmore told her not to say anything (sound reasoning), and tells Widmore he only has one question, “Why did you come back?”, and if he answers it, he won’t kill Penny when he gets off the island. Widmore doesn’t believe him until he’s like, “I give you my word as a magical column of smoke that murders people,” and Widmore explains that Desmond’s resistance to electromagnetism made him the last resort after Jacob’s death, then he’s like “this doesn’t make a lot of sense so let me just whisper the rest to you so we don’t have to hear it spelled out,” and as he’s doing so, Ben shoots him a bunch of times. Ben tries to deliver the one-liner “He doesn’t get to save his daughter,” but any badassery in this line is quickly undermined when Locke’s like, “Oh NBD, he already told me the thing. Lunch?”

Clearly, Ben isn’t just on a randomly evil killing spree. One or both of the following things is true:

1) Ben killed Widmore just to specifically get revenge on him for Alex, but also to win over Locke’s trust – he’s not just gonna instantly kill everyone else too.

2) He and Widmore are in cahoots, and this was part of their very extreme last-resort plan. I highly doubt that a Widmore bullet proof vest will be unveiled in the finale, for the sake of everyone’s dignity.

Ben’s clearly setting himself up for something grand in the finale; if someone’s gonna take out the smoke monster, likely at the expense of his own life, I think it’s gonna be him. Or possibly Hurley. (It will not be Hurley.)


Jack, Kate and Co. are still mourning the loss of their three sub pals, and Sawyer gives Jack the obligatory “I killed them, didn’t I?” JACK’S BRAIN: “Say yes say yes say yes say yes say yes say yes say yes say yes say yes…” JACK’S MOUTH: “No, you didn’t. Locke did. You just really, really helped. Helped us escape! I mean. Man, you suck at things worse than I do now.”

Baby Jacob appears to Hurley and grabs his own ashes from him (trippy!), and when Hurley runs to follow him, adult Jacob is there burning them in a fire, and explains that when that fire burns out, he’s gone forever, so there’s that rule. Hurley rounds up his colleagues for a climactic final discussion around a campfire, and just as as Jacob is beginning to finally explain the entire reason all of them are there, Jack whips out a guitar and starts singing “Wonderwall” and everyone joins in, and Jacob sighs and stops talking.

When they’re finished, Jacob resumes explaining that he made a mistake many years ago that may destroy the world, and he had to pull these candidates out of their miserable earth lives so one of them can assume his responsibilities after he’s gone. Jack valiantly steps forward and says “I’ll do it. This is why I’m here.” Jacob’s like, “…Yeah, it is why you’re here, I just told you that.” To protect the island, they must do what Jacob was never able to do: Kill the Man In Black. Jack says, “Is that even possible?” Jacob answers, “Ionknow. What am I, a doctor?”

Jacob proceeds to explain Jack’s responsibilities: “The trash gets picked up every Tuesday night — remember to separate out aluminum and plastic, but paper’s its own thing — the island dog gets fed twice a day but only two cans of wet food a week, and you have to guard that light thing we learned about the other day. DO NOT forget the trash.” He mumbles the island prayer to himself, then puts some creek water in a cup and gives it to Jack. Jack asks, “How long am I gonna have to do this job? This won’t mess up my Thanksgiving plans, right?” Jacob answers, “Ehhhhrrrmmm, I’ll look into that, you drink.” Jack drinks. Jacob says, “Now you are like me.” This part fails to win the Scenie Award for Best Scene Of The Episode, but we suppose it’s necessary. If this was the internet in 2006, someone would’ve remixed this scene with the Brokeback Mountain guitar.

The episode concludes with a cut back to Locke telling Ben he’s gonna find Desmond and when he does, he’s gonna destroy the island. LOST. Umm, no one ever talked about doing that at any point in the series, but, well, cool. We’re almost at the end, so might as well blow it up. Why not? What’re you gonna do on it after next week, have concerts there?


— In general, this was a ridiculously straightforward episode, with the island and sideways plots both proceeding very logically and in a linear fashion, and with several questions answered and nothing confusing introduced. I have never written this sentence before without it being extreme sarcasm. Weird.

— Locke walks around as a human instead of flying because he likes to feel his feet on the ground. Plothole = Gone! (Sure.)

— Hurley and Scott Hartnell of the Flyers, Hair Palz:

— We’re assuming Richard isn’t dead, right? Don’t think they’d kill off the immortal, unaging island seer by pulling out one of those olde timey red-and-white hooks they use in cartoons to snag performers off a stage.

— The title, “What They Died For” is a phrase mentioned at the very end of the book Johnny Tremain: “Hundreds would die, but not the thing they died for. ‘A man can stand up …’ ” Perhaps next week is Jack’s week to “stand up” and defeat the smoke monster? Or get his hand deformed in an accident? Pleeeease the latter… (P.S. – I’m awesome at picking out literary references as long as they don’t go beyond 7th grade – if they reference View From The Cherry Tree in the finale, I’m all over that.)

— Next week on Lost: Weird, crappy haunted lady voiceover. Now I am going to watch the Lost finale. I wonder if the time for questions is over?

“What They Died For” episode thoughts? Questions? Comments? Theories? Finale predictions? Leave ‘em all in the comments – only ONE MORE EPISODE before we can resume our actual lives (BOOOOOO!!!!)

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