Evangeline Lilly, LostPreviously on Lost: Sayid escaped from DHARMA-Ville and shot Young Ben.  In the chest.  At point blank range.  Anything other than Young Ben’s death had better come with a really good explanation.

The “Previously on Lost” package includes Cassidy telling Sawyer that he has a daughter named Clementine, Kate helping Cassidy, and Sawyer whispering something into Kate’s ear. It’s pretty easy to connect the dots based solely on the clips they chose to show.

Back in 1977, Jin regains consciousness and sees Young Ben on the ground. He turns him over and, miraculously, Young Ben isn’t dead. I probably should be surprised, but since Ben did pretty much the same thing to John Locke, it makes sense that bullets aren’t quite as powerful on the Island. Unless you’re Ana-Lucia or Libby or Shannon or Ethan or any of the many, many other people who’ve been killed by guns on this show.

Jin takes Young Ben back to camp, where Horace is organizing a search party for the escaped Hostile as well as the person on the inside who helped him escape. Kate helps Roger Linus fix a car as Jin drives up. Roger rushes to his son, which causes Kate to have a flashback.

It’s sometime soon after the Oceanic 6 came back, because Kate is driving around a baby Aaron. She pulls up to a nice house and, as you might have expected, it’s Cassidy’s house. Kate’s there to drop off some money and check up on Clementine, which is what Sawyer whispered to her at the end of last season, in case you hadn’t already guessed. By the way, I totally called that during the episode last year, and my friend who sat next to me can vouch for it.

Kate gives her some money and tells her the truth about Sawyer still being alive, but for mysterious reasons, she continues to lie about being Aaron’s mother.

On the Island, Horace learns that Sayid’s cell was opened using a janitor’s key, which sends Sawyer to Roger Linus. Sawyer has clearly spent the last three years becoming a master detective, because he almost immediately deduces that Young Ben stole his dad’s keys, helped Sayid escape, and then got shot by Sayid in a betrayal.

Sawyer has Miles lock Jack, Kate and Hurley in a house while he checks on Young Ben. Juliet is trying to repair the bleeding, which is surreal. However, she needs help, which can mean only one thing: Jack the Janitor needs to perform surgery on Benjamin Linus!

If this sounds familiar, it’s because it is. The first time Jack came to the Island, Ben said it was fate because he needed a surgeon. Is the reason Ben urged Jack to return to the Island because he knew he needed Jack to perform surgery on him again In 1977? Jack recognizes the deja vu irony of having Kate beg him to perform surgery on Ben, but this time he doesn’t care.

In the house, Hurley and Miles engage in a hilarious debate about time travel. Hurley thinks that he’s going to disappear like in Back to the Future because they’ve changed the future by possibly killing Young Ben. Miles assures him that whatever happened, happened, so Sayid always shot Ben. And if not, they’re gone and none of it matters anyway.

Miles and Hurley continue their excellent adventure in trying to understand time travel. Miles gets frustrated when explaining that this is their present, but it’s already happened, and that they can die, but the people for whom this is the past can not. As a fan of time travel, this makes perfect sense. Time is a fixed, straight line, but these people’s individual timelines are twisting back on that line.

Hurley tries to poke a hole in this theory, pointing out that if this always happened, how come Ben didn’t recognize Sayid as the man who tortured him when he was locked up in the Swan Station. Miles is stumped. The obvious answer is that Ben is a notorious liar and may have simply feigned ignorance all this time.

Meanwhile, Kate is angry that Jack won’t help, so she goes off to donate some of her blood to Young Ben. Roger comes in and figures out his son busted Sayid out of the cell. He and Kate have a conversation about what a terrible father he is. Kate learns more about Ben’s life in this one encounter than in the entire rest of the show.

Roger says that a boy needs his mother, which causes Kate to reflect on her own issues with Aaron. Young Ben takes a dramatic turn for the worse, and if Jack won’t help, Juliet offers another suggestion: taking Young Ben to the Hostiles for help. Surprisingly, Kate goes along with this plan.

While Kate runs off to the jungle, Juliet barges in on Jack in the shower to scold him for not helping Young Ben. As Hurley and Miles leave, Miles begs for Hurley to ask him more questions about time travel. I agree, and also, can we please follow them instead of this love square of Juliet, Jack, Sawyer and Kate?

Just like in last week’s episode, the next “flashback” is to the pier the night Ben Linus and the others went to see Ms. Hawking. But instead, Kate left with Aaron to try to buy a juice box at a supermarket. Not quite as exciting as drinking expensive scotch at a bar, but OK. Kate looks down an aisle and when she turns around, Aaron is missing. She freaks out, but eventually finds him.

This experience sends her to visit Cassidy. An adorable toddler Clementine answers the door and says hello to her Auntie Kate. Inside, Kate tells Cassidy that the rest of the Oceanic 6 are planning to try and go back to the Island. Some chick flick bonding brings Kate to the conclusion that she needed to take custody of Aaron to fill the void left in her heart when Sawyer jumped out of the helicopter.

Kate goes back to Claire’s mom and tells her that Aaron is her grandson and Claire is alive. Where does Kate get off telling Carole this? Claire disappeared, and she has absolutely no idea whether or not she’s still alive. Kate tries to explain why she pretended Aaron was hers before dropping Aaron off to live with his grandma so she can go back to find Claire.

At least that’s what she tells Carole, but we all know she’s really going back for the man she actually wants in her life. The strings come on louder than ever as Kate cries when she says goodbye to her fake son. In honor of this, I feel nothing but fake sympathy for her.

Back to Kate’s future (and the rest of the world’s past), Sawyer catches up to her and tells her that he plans to help take Young Ben to the Hostiles. The two start talking about Cassidy and Clementine which brings them back to his decision to jump out of the helicopter to avoid having a relationship with Kate.

The Hostiles surround them with guns because Sawyer broke the Truce, but Sawyer says that saving Young Ben’s life is more important, so he demands they take him to Richard Alpert. Sawyer carries Young Ben until Richard seems to pop out of nowhere. Sawyer is surprised to find out Richard already knows Ben.

They ask Richard to save him, and Richard says that if he does, Ben won’t remember this, his innocence will be gone, and he’ll always be one of the Hostiles. Isn’t that a nice convenient way to get around the infinite number of paradoxes all this time travel stuff raised?

Another Hostile says that Richard should talk to Ellie first, because he’ll be in trouble if Charles finds out. So I guess those two characters from “Jughead” are still around, Ellie being Eloise Hawking, Faraday’s mother, and Charles being Charles Widmore.

Richard walks Young Ben into the jungle to an ancient looking temple and goes inside. This causes a flash forward and now we’re back with the present Ben after the Ajira 316 crash. He wakes up and sees John Locke sitting next to him. “Hello Ben,” Locke says. “Welcome back to the land of the living.” That’s pretty bad-ass.

Next week on Lost: Woo hoo, it’s a Ben-centric episode! He came back to the Island to be judged, which can mean only one thing: Smokey’s back!

(Image courtesy of ABC)


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