So whatever happened to Sawyer and the gang since Locke pushed the old whirly-wheel? Well, according to this episode, their time jumps have been fixed, but unfortunately they're about thirty years before the time they crashed on the island.  We jumps back and forth between present time and three years from now, watching the present Sawyer & Co. encounter both Others and Dharma, while future Sawyer & Co. are members of the Dharma Initiative, trying to help a a pregnant woman in labor, with romance blossoming on the side between two most unlikely lovers...and it's all in this week's Lost, after the jump.

Episode 8: LaFleur
Full Episode Online: ABC Official Site

Locke’s legacy
A desperate Sawyer clutches at the rope that Locke had been holding mere seconds before, as the only place it leads now is directly into the dirty buried somewhere deep inside.  Juliet tries to console him, saying that whatever time they’re in right now is nowhere near John.  They then notice something off in the distance: a tall, milky-white stone statue, facing the opposite direction.  (The statue with four toes!! Well, at least they haven’t forgot about it, and its Egyptian-looking design is interesting)  When John pulls the wheel, a huge light flashes, this one doubling Miles, Jin, Juliet, and Sawyer all over in pain.  It passes, and when Sawyer looks up he sees the well is back again, so he rushes over to climb in, only to find it doesn’t go anywhere.  He angrily tosses the rope aside, and Juliet and Miles comment how both their nosebleeds and headaches have ceased.  “I think it’s over,” Juliet says.  “I think John did it.”  “Now what?”  Jin asks.  “Now we wait for him to come back,” Sawyer replies.  “How long?”  Juliet asks.  “As long as it takes,” Sawyer says.

Three years later, we see a Dharma station employee turns on some tunes and start to dance with a pretty girl, while a bank of cameras stares at them from the wall.  Someone else comes in and berates him for not watching the cameras, and the dancer laughs it off. “What, are the polar bears gonna escape from their cages?”  They notice activity on the monitors, and the girl shouts out in shock, “Is that Horace?”  As they watch, Horace, who seems pretty drunk, comes into view and collapses near the perimeter of sonic pylons, removes a stick of dynamite from his bag, lights it, and tosses it away, covering his ears at the explosion.  The trio at the station freak out, and dismiss the girl quickly, worrying about what “LaFleur” will do to them if they don’t save Horace.  They decide to go and wake him, and rush out of the house – it’s the Others’ camp.  They head over to another house and knock on the door, telling him that Horace has dynamite and is blowing up trees.  “Son of a bitch,” Sawyer, says, grabbing a Dharma jacket that says, “LaFleur” and heading out.  Nice opening.  Now that Lost is done setting up and tying together loose storylines, they have the opportunity to plough ahead and pack a serious punch with each episode.  This one looks to be no exception.  In the blue van, Sawyer meets up with Miles and tells him that “our fearless leader is blowin’ up trees because he’s loaded.”  “Since when does Horace drink?”  Mile asks.  “He doesn’t,” is Sawyer’s answer.  “So we’re gonna keep this on the downlow.”  They arrive at the perimeter and haul Horace away, taking him back to the camp and dumping him on, presumably, his wife’s, Amy’s, couch.  She’s shocked to see him, and also very pregnant.    When he tells her what happened, she confesses that they had a fight, about someone name Paul, but before she can go any further she starts to moan in pain.  “It’s coming.”  “Oh hell,” Sawyer says.

Paul and Amy
Back in the present, Sawyer and the gang find Daniel not too far away, just sitting on the ground and blubbering out that, “I’m not going to tell her….Charlotte’s gone….”  Juliet asks where, but Daniel just answers that she’s dead – after the flash, her body was gone.  “We stayed, she moved on,” Daniel says, barely choking out the words.  Sawyer says nearly right away, “Hold on, wait a minute.  We’re not traveling through time any more?”  Daniel says that yup, indeed they aren’t, and that “wherever, whenever we are now, we’re here for good.”  He then goes back to saying, “I won’t.” (Hm, could he be talking about how he’s supposedly going to tell Charlotte never to come back to the island?  Maybe he’s desperately trying to avert that happening, hoping that if he doesn’t maybe Charlotte won’t die?) They decide to head back to the beach, while Miles complains about their only two plans being going to the beach or going to the Orchid, and how they could very well got shot at with flaming arrows once more if they try to trek back.  Sawyer doesn’t really answer, and just stomps off.  On the walk, Juliet says she hopes they figure out something better before they get to the beach, which, she says, actually was a stupid idea.  “Well I’m open to suggestions,” Sawyer says.  A gunshot interrupts them, and they rush off to see what looks like an execution going on in the middle of the clearing. “Who do you think they are?”  Juliet says.  “Who cares, we don’t even know when they are,” Miles replies.  He goes over to check up on Daniel, and says, “We don’t interfere, right?”  “It doesn’t matter,” Daniel says.  “Whatever happened, happened.”  Sawyer don’t wanna listen to ole’ Plato here, so he goes over to the executioners, and pulls his gun on them from a couple hundred feet away, but one of them just points his own gun at him.  He falls to the ground, shot in the chest, by Juliet, and Sawyer quickly dispatches the other dude.  They go over to the woman in the clearing and rip the cloth bag off her head – and it’s the pregnant lady, Amy, from the beginning of the episode!  She’s soon sitting down next to, presumably, her dead husband, who’s wearing a Dharma jumpsuit, and weeps quietly.  Juliet tells Sawyer that the jumpsuit is from the 70’s or 80’s.  Before they head off, Sawyer tells the woman that their ship wrecked on the way to Tahiti, and she needs to come with them if she doesn’t want to stay behind and get killed.  Amy starts talking about a truce, and how they have to bury him, and take the dude in the tan jumpsuit, Paul, back with them.  She reveals that he actually is her husband, and Sawyer reluctantly agrees to take the bodies with them. They walk for a while, and Sawyer tells Juliet and Miles to let him take care of it, because he used to lie for a living.  They soon come upon the pylon fence, which Amy doesn’t tell them about, and Daniel’s about to walk right through when Juliet warns him to stop.  She and Sawyer order the woman to turn it off, which she does, walking through and turning around to let them all know it’s safe.  They start to walk through, but are crippled right away by the sonic waves pulsing through their eardrums, and they collapse on the jungle floor, unconscious.  Amy then pops a couple of earplugs out of her ear.

Three years later, at the Others’s camp, Amy is having her baby and a doctor is telling Sawyer that it’s early – she wasn’t due for two weeks and was scheduled to be boated off the island in time for the delivery.  The doctor, unfortunately, is not an obstetrician, and when Sawyer asks him if he can deliver this baby, he confesses that “Maybe not.”  Sawyer rushes off to grab Juliet, dressed in a mechanic’s uniform and working on one of the vans, who tells him that every single baby she’s ever tried to deliver on the island has died, but Sawyer says that whatever it was that caused that may not have happened yet, so it’s worth a try.  Juliet goes with him to the house, while the doctor stares nervously on, “not sure this is a good idea.”  Amy says out loud that she wants Juliet to do it, and the doctor walks off, satisfied for now.  Sawyer leaves too, after telling Juliet that she’ll do great, and paces outside of the building, before Jin comes up (dressed in Dharma garb!), asking him if he’s okay.  “We finished Grid 1-3 today,” Jin says.  “No sign of our people.  No one…..How long do we look, James?”  “As long as it takes,” Saywer growls.  Juliet comes out, barely concealing tears, and Sawyer asks hurriedly if everything’s okay.  “It’s a boy,” Juliet says, smiling.  “Everyone’s okay.”  Her and Sawyer embrace, their faces cracking open into monstrously wide grins.  We don’t get to see Sawyer grinning too often, so this is a nice, welcom break from all the drama, and it feels real and true.  Who exactly this baby is though, I’m sure we’re all quite curious to find out….

Broken Truce
Three years earlier, Sawyer wakes up on a couch, with Horace looking him in the face, telling him that they did what they did to Sawyer and his group because they have to be careful of the hostile indigenous people on the island.  He tells Sawyer to tell him who he is, and Sawyer says, “I’m James LaFleur.  You can call me Jim.”  He tells Horace the whole story – how they were a salvage vessel that crashed on shore, looking for a famous lost wreck, and they were out and about on the island looking for lost crew.  Horace tells him that the next day they’ll see them off the island on a sub to Tahiti.  Sawyer tells him that because they saved that woman’s life, that should allow them a couple extra weeks to look for their missing crew.  Horace outright refuses, telling him that only members of the Dharma Initiative are allowed on the island, and, frankly, Sawyer’s not Dharma material.  Outside, Miles, Daniel, Juliet, and Jin discuss their options.  “Daniel?  No more flash?”  Jin asks.  Daniel shakes his head sadly, saying that the record’s now spinning again, they’re just not on the song they want to be on.  Everyone goes quiet, until Daniel sees a little red-headed girl not too far away, happily running through the camp, her hand clutched to her mother’s. (Hi, Charlotte!)  Daniel’s eyes practically bug out, but he’s interrupted by Horace coming over and telling them that “Mr. LaFleur can tell you the situation.”  He walks off and Sawyer explains everything, while Miles wonders aloud whether it’s a bad thing that they’re taking a sub off the island tomorrow.  Suddenly an alarm sounds over the whole camp, and people rush off to their houses.  Sawyer and Juliet watch from the window as none other than Richard Alpert walks up to the camp, meeting up with Horace and telling him that the truce is now broken – he demands to know where his two men are – the men Sawyer killed, probably.  Inside, Miles says that the sub off the island is starting to sound like a great idea. Into the house burst Horace and some dude, Horace asking Sawyer how well he buried the bodies.  “That depends on how well they look,” Sawyer says grimly.  Horace turns back to the dude and starts talking rapidly.  “Call the Arrow.  Tell them we’re at Condition One.  Make sure the fence is on maximum.”  Sawyer tells them that he’s going out there to talk to him, because he’s the one who killed his men.  “Hello, Richard,” Sawyer says, walking up to him.  “I’m sorry, do we know each other?”  “I’m the guy who shot your men,” Sawyer says, explaining the whole thing and that since he’s not part of the Dharma Initiative, no truce was really broken.  Richard asks him where he’s from, and Sawyer sighs and sits down on the bench next to him, asking him if his people buried the bomb with “Jughead” written across the side.  Richard doesn’t answer; only looks baffled, but Sawyer continues and tells him that he knows that 20 years ago a man named John Locke bumbled into his camp and claimed to be his leader.  “I’m waiting for him to come back,” he says.   Sawyer asks if Richard still thinks he’s part of Dharma, and Richard says no, but his people still need justice, because two of his men are dead, so they need to do something about that.  Back in the house, Horace tells Amy that they told them where the bodies were, to keep the truce, but they still need Paul for Sawyer to take back to them.  He tells her it’s her choice, though – they will suffer the consequences, willingly, if she can’t part with him.  She says that yes, they can take him, but she asks for a minute, taking the time to pull off a necklace.  Sawyer apologizes to her on her way out, and when she’s gone Horace tells him he can stay for two weeks and look for his crew – he goes to Juliet and tells her the good news – but not so good to her, apparently.  She says that she’s been trying to get off the island for years, and now’s finally her chance –Locke did save them; the bloody noses stopped, and so did the flashes.  Sawyer points out that the world she knows is vastly different from 1974.  “That’s not a reason not to go,” Juliet says.  Sawyer implores her to stay; just two weeks, that’s all he’s asking.  Juliet agrees. 

Many happy returns
Three years later, they’re still on the island (guess those two weeks lasted a tad longer), Sawyer waltzing through the camp, picking flowers.  He comes into a house and comments that “Somethin’ smells good.”  Juliet’s cooking up a meal, and Sawyer offers her a single yellow flower.  They kiss, and tell each other they love each other,, and Lost fans everywhere are going, “Wait, wtf?  Juliet and Sawyer?” The next day, Horace wakes up, with a splitting headache, and Sawyer announces to him that he’s the proud father of a beautiful baby boy.  Horace confesses that he had found Paul’s necklace in the back of Amy’s drawer and had gotten into a fight over it, which is how he ended up so drunk.  “It’s only been three years since he’s been gone, Jim,” Horace says.  “Is that really long enough to get over someone?”  Sawyer tells him that he used to have a girl once, and how he used to wonder if he could ever stop thinking about her.  “Right now I can barely remember what she looks like,” he says.  “So…is three years long enough to get over someone?  Absolutely.”  The next morning, Sawyer’s in bed with Juliet, woken up by a phone call which sends him packing out of the room with barely a word or two of explanation to her.  We see him driving through a field in a blue jeep, and he sees Jin’s van off in the distance. It stops, and out come Hurley and Jack, followed closely by Kate, whom Sawyer stares at for about ten seconds, right before the episode ends.

First of all, it was kind of rude to give us that teaser last week that made it seem like Kate and Sawyer were gonna meet again and then close the episode right before they even say a word to each other, but hey, that’s television.  This episode was a decent one, but had the undeniable feel of filler.  The writers obviously needed something to explain what happened to Sawyer and the gang while the Oceanic 6, Ben, and Locke were gone, and so they chose an episode that focused on Sawyer’s feelings for Kate.  Admittedly, the comparison between Horace and Amy and Sawyer and Kate was clever, but I can’t help feeling that the Juliet/Sawyer relationship feels a little tacked on – kind of like the Parkman/Daphne relationship in Heroes.  Now, sure, they spent three years together and we only saw forty-five minutes of those three years, but it doesn’t change the fact that it feels rushed, as if Juliet is only there to show how much Sawyer missed Kate and how much he’s not really over her.  I mean, think about it.  We spent about three entire seasons that occupied a period of less than six months.  Then, we spent a couple more seasons that happened over the course of three years. Now, we’ve got one freakin’ episode that spans three years, and in addition to this, asks us to believe that two of its main characters fell in love.  Given the time frame of the episode, it’s not that badly pulled off, actually, but it’s questionable whether they should have gone that route at all (and plus, isn’t it a little coincidental, even for Lost, that Kate and Sawyer find themselves apart for nearly the exact same amount of time?  Wouldn’t it have been more interesting to explore their different perceptions of time?).  The only justification for this would be if, after spending three years on the island, Sawyer and his buddies know a hell of a lot more about it than they did before, or some kind of jealousy erupts between Juliet and Kate that affects the island as a whole. Juliet’s a tough cookie, I doubt she’s going to let Sawyer go that easily.

-Thomas Anderson
aka Movie Buzz Review Dude. Check out his movie/media/pop culture blog here.