This episode gave us time-travel sickness, and not because of the Desmond plot (hey, we're a sucker for an cute toddler) or the island shenanigans, which paid off with that one terrific reveal. No, it's very straightforward: If we have to watch Jeremy Davies moon over the swooning redhead for one more minute, we're going to set off the hydrogen bomb! When the freighter arrived, Faraday was a twitchy, guilt-stricken exoskeleton of nerd fear. Charlotte was an icy swashbuckler with C.S. Lewis's name and the entitled air of an international spy-heiress. Now, she's bleeding out the nose, quietly touched at his virile confessions of ardor? Oh, it's just pissing us off.
You people can time travel, right? Well then: BRING BACK ROUSSEAU.
Filipino dialect, Desmond hollering, a doctor procured, and Penelope pops out a baby. Flash forward, and the sweet family has been cruising the Love Boat for three years. As they approach Great Britain to seek Faraday's mom, the mood darkens: Penny warns Des about her Evil Dad (Desmond knows this by now, yes?), and acts like the huffy-cautious wife of a brave cop. "I'll be back, my darling, and then I'm done, forever — I promise," says Desmond, vowing (foreshadowing?) never to return to the island.
Meanwhile, on Lost island, Twitchy, worried about Red's headache, pets her creepily, like she's a puppy. Miles feels the shining, there's an explosion, and hot-armed soldiers arrive, led by a blonde woman who would not look out-of-place as the lead singer of a small Welsh indie band. She spots Faraday and says, "You just couldn't stay away, could you?"
Mainland: Desmond's Scarf Seeks Justice
Desmond swaggers into Oxford in purple sunglasses, stripey scarf, and Kate's hair, finding no record of Faraday. Conveniently, one smash through a "Danger: Fumigation" sign reveals Faraday's old lab, where an initially angry workman reveals something Faraday did "to that poor gel." Desmond visits said gel, Theresa, who is comatose with time-travel sickness; her spunky sister explains that while Faraday "abandoned" Theresa, thank God for Charles Widmore, who funded Faraday's experiments and has paid for Theresa's care ever since.
Scarf quivering with anger, Desmond storms Widmore's office — the International Conspiracy of Bad Dads has terrible security — and gets whispery-macho. The upshot: Widmore reveals that Faraday's "very private" mother is in L.A. As Desmond storms back out, Widmore suggests he avoid this mess. Except that he's heading to L.A., where Widmore's enemy Ben will steer him to the island. Who is allies with whom and ... what? The logic is not our friend.
Desmond returns to find Penny and Charlie (!!!) napping. There's more "I won't leave ya, not for this, not for anything," but Penny insists, "You'll never forget it, Des, so I guess we're going with you." Hume-Widmore Family Road Trip!
On the Island: Twitchy on Steroids, Goony Charlotte, and a Reveal That Works
As Bjork bullies the Freighties on one part of the island, Locke, Sawyer, and Juliet consider their own captured soldiers: one sweet Brit, one cocky Brit. Sawyer threatens to shoot, which makes the Brits speak Latin, a language Juliet also knows. This is because the Others speak Latin, the Language of the Enlightened, for they are such incredible nerds.
Meanwhile, as Björk marches the Freighties to Camp Other, Miles senses the graves of U.S. soldiers. So when Richard "Eyeliner" Alpert asks Twitchy if he's returned for "his bomb," Twitchy knows what's what. They're in 1954, he informs his team: while waiting for the flash, they'll pretend they're soldiers here to render a hydrogen bomb inert. When Richard returns, Daniel lies as nicely as Ben — and mid-lie, confesses his love for Red, which gives us a rash.
Elsewhere, Juliet and the Brits whisper-debate in Other-Latin, until the nice Brit agrees to take them to Camp Other, a plan that collapses when Cocky breaks Nice's neck, then scampers away.
At Camp Other, Red and Twitchy disgust us more with their love. Richard explains to Faraday that they killed those soldiers on Someone's command, then Cocky scampers in and he and Richard bicker over his hotheadedness. The Losties won't track them, Cocky insists, because "some old man" was in charge of the group. Ha: As they speak, Locke and Juliet are in fact gazing at Camp Other, chit-chatting about how old Richard is (very old), whether he wrote the very first song, etc. "I hate to bust up the 'I'm an Other, You're an Other' reunion," snarks Sawyer.
Cut to Björk and Twitchy. Björk is a dead ringer for someone (Theresa? Faraday's mom? His pet rat?) "I am your best chance at disarming that bomb," Twitchy breathes, doing a lusty two-step toward her gun. Twitchy inspects the cracked warhead, and the two bicker bicker bicker until Twitchy blurts out that in 50 years, the island will still be there. Then Sawyer and Juliet show up, and there's gun-pointing but no gun-shooting.
Locke yells for Richard, who asks, "Who are you?" Crestfallen, Locke does a nice save with "Jacob sent me." Several fabulous close-ups of Richard, then, almost in passing, we get a great reveal, when Locke realizes that the British jerkwad of a soldier is young Charles Widmore.
In the episode's one charmingly languid sequence, Locke briefs Richard on his future: He'll give Locke a compass, fix his leg, etc. There's chuckling and Other banter and finally Locke tells him that Richard should come visit him when he's born. Which means that Locke deputized Richard to find him as a child: Cool. But despite Locke's whining, Richard won't reveal how to get off the island, and there's a big flash, and they're back in time.
A final bout of repulsive love-banter ends when Charlotte mercifully gushes blood and collapses. Does the island reduce all promising plotlines to sappy romance? If so, Oceanic 6, never return.
What We Know Now
• Charles Widmore was an Other!
• And he has a grandson named Charlie.
• The Oceanic 6 are soon all going to be in the same city for a fun-loving reunion at Skybar.
The Wha? Factor
• Who were these mysteriously diverse Original-Flavor Others, and why do they include Charles Widmore, a waifish Welsh indie-pop singer, and the Handsomest Man Alive?
• If Faraday did all of those notorious experiments, could Oxford conceal his whole existence simply by pasting a fumigation notice on the door and pulling a card out of the filing system?
• Blonde Björk is named Ellie. We saw Eloise Hawking, last episode, in her faith-science lab-church, giving a warning to Ben. Faraday also named his rat Eloise. Discuss!