Welcome to LOST Observations: your guide through the clues and easter eggs scattered throughout ABC’s LOST. After my two week vacation, we continue with this ninth edition, in which we’ll look back at the Sayid-centric Solitary.
Major plot spoilers for Seasons 1-6 ahead!
While most of the survivors are finally coming to terms with the fact that they won’t leave the island for a while, Sayid finds the lady who has been spending her last 16 years there. In our first mythology-heavy episode of the show, we don’t just get the backstory of our favorite Iraqi soldier, but that of Danielle Rousseau as well. Let’s see how much of it is true.
“You have more than you know.”
NOOR ABED JAZEEM
- The episode starts with Sayid looking at the pictures of his past love Nadia, like he did in Walkabout. The Arabic writing on the back of the photo says “You’ll find me in the next life, if not in this one”. This message is similar to Desmond’s catchphrase “I’ll see you in another life, brotha” and fits with the themes explored in the flashsideways from the final season of the show.
- Sayid is briefly reunited with Nadia when he finds his way off the island. She is killed by one of Widmore’s employees a few months after marrying Sayid. Ben uses her death to convince Sayid into working for him as a hitman.
- In Sayid’s true “next life”, the flashsideways world created by the survivors – including Sayid himself – Nadia is back in Sayid’s life, but married to Sayid’s brother Omer. According to Nadia, Sayid “pushed her to his brother” because he felt he didn’t deserve her. Considering the world was “made” by himself and for himself, isn’t that just the saddest thing you’ve ever heard?
- Sayid finds love with fellow survivor Shannon Rutherford, and moves on with her in the final scene of the show. A creative decision made by the producers that not everyone agrees with. Personally, I think if Sayid truly believed he didn’t deserve to be with Nadia, he never could have been truly happy with her. Of course, I’d love to hear your thoughts!
- One of my favorite LOST “mysteries” is the underwater cable. In this episode we see one side runs into the ocean, and in Numbers we learn the other side goes into the ground near the rope bridge on the island. Danielle Rousseau has set up traps around the cable to protect herself from others (and “Others”).
- In Enter 77, Mikhail Bakunin tells Sayid (and us viewers) that there are several cables running from The Flame station to the other stations on the island, this one presumably being one of them. According to Mikhail, the cable leads to an underwater beacon that helps guide in the DHARMA submarines coming to the island. As shown in the diagrams found inside The Flame, the cable was also supposed to serve as an anchor, tying the Looking Glass station to the island.
- We revisit the cable twice in the show’s third season. Desmond, Jin, Charlie and Hurley go there in Catch-22 during their quest to find the parachutist from the freighter, and a few days later Desmond and Charlie go back to follow the cable to the Looking Glass station, where Charlie meets his demise.
- Cables are mentioned on the Blast Door Map from the LOST: Via Domus video game. The map from the game contains some details that were not seen on the map shown on the TV show.
“Cables running offshore – possible Looking Glass”
ROUSSEAU’S STORY: TRUE OR FALSE
- Let’s take a look at the things Danielle Rousseau says that will turn out to be important later, and see how her story matches what we learn later on the show.
“[The transmission] is broadcast from somewhere else. But [The Others] control it now.”
- UNSURE. In Numbers, Rousseau tells Hurley there’s a radio tower on the island. The survivors visit the tower in Through the Looking Glass to turn off Rousseau’s signal and broadcast a new one. There is, however, not much to suggest The Others are “in control” of the tower. Assuming the radio tower was built by the Dharma Initiative, you could say The Others took over after the Purge (which is interesting, considering Rousseau’s message was recorded 4 years prior to that), but didn’t actually use the tower.
“It’s a music box, but it’s broken. Has been for a long time. It was a gift from my love, for our anniversary. It was such a comfort to me in the first few years here.”
- This appears to be TRUE. We meet Danielle’s husband, Robert, in The Little Prince. The music box makes an appearance in the episode after that. It also appears in a flashback in Dead Is Dead, when Ben Linus kidnaps Alex. Ben, the rookie kidnapper that he was at the time, accidentally drops it, waking Danielle up. This is presumably the only time she has actually seen other people on the island (besides Jin).
“We were part of a science team”
- This is also just an assumption, but since most of the crew died before having had the chance to research anything, there’s nothing to suggest this isn’t TRUE. In an early version of the script, Rousseau says they were researching “time”. The line was deleted by the network, and never referenced again on the show. We do know Rousseau and the other five members of her team (Robert, Montand, Brennan, Nadine and Lacombe), crashed their ship (Bésixdouze) on or near the island in 1988. We never find out why they were armed with rifles, though.
“Our vessel was 3 days out of Tahiti when our instruments malfunctioned. It was night… the storm, the sounds. The ship slammed into rocks, ran aground, the hull breached beyond repair. So, we made camp, dug out this temporary shelter. Temporary… Nearly 2 months we survived here, 2 months before –”
- Rousseau tells Jin that her ship sailed from Tahiti in This Place Is Death. There was indeed a big storm, in which the time-travelling survivors (Locke, Sawyer, Miles, etc.) got caught as well. We also learn that the island has a way of making instruments (and people!) “malfunction” when they’re near. Rousseau’s maps show her crew abandoned the ship in the ocean, and when Jin meets Rousseau in 1988, she’s on an emergency raft. We can assume Rousseau is telling the truth about building the shelter as well, but when she shot her husband they were at a tent on the beach instead of the jungle. In short, it all seems to be TRUE.
“We were coming back from the Black Rock. It was them. They were the carriers. The Others.”
- FALSE. The moment Jin witnessed the murder of Robert, there were crates filled with dynamite on the beach, so we can assume they did come back from the Black Rock at the time. Rousseau is wrong about The Others, though. Robert and the other members of the science team were likely killed and infected by the Smoke Monster when they entered the tunnel underneath the Temple, but as we’ve seen with Sayid, it takes some time for the “darkness” to fully take over. There is nothing to indicate that The Others were carrying the sickness.
“No [I haven't seen other people]. But I hear them. Out there, in the jungle. They whisper…”
- FALSE. As we know now, Rousseau has seen at least two other people on the island: Ben and Jin. Ben told her “if you want your child to live, every time you hear whispers, you run the other way”. Rousseau probably assumed this meant the sound of whispers belonged to The Others. It’s unknown what Ben really meant, as we later learn the whispers belong to dead people hanging around on the island.
“There’s no such thing as monsters.”
- Well, that one’s still up for debate.
ALEX, WHO IS HE?
- Rousseau’s reaction to Sayid’s question hints that Alex might actually be short for Alexandra. In Exodus, we learn that Alex is, indeed, a girl.
- Just as Walt is starting to get bored, saying there’s nothing to do on the island, Hurley comes up with the idea to build a golf course. After a conversation with Michael, Walt decides he’d rather learn how to throw knives with Locke. This will later become a point of conflict between Michael and Locke (Special). Fun to note that Michael tells Walt to find a way to entertain himself, then gets mad at Hurley for doing exactly that. Later, he doesn’t think to let Walt play in his turn because he’s having too much fun.
- Hurley will always be remembered as the only survivor to remember the importance of fun. Just like in this episode, he tries to convince the survivors to join him to the Dharma van in Tricia Tanaka Is Dead “because it will be fun!”. Unfortunately, the survivors are not as enthusiastic anymore at that point as they are in this episode. What happened to Sullivan?
- Hurley says rich idiots go to tropical islands all the time to play golf. He’d know. We find out in Numbers that Hurley himself is, well… rich. In The Economist, Sayid, having received a large sum of money from Oceanic, is playing golf in the Seychelles.
- The golf course is the first hint of Hurley’s leadership qualities. Of course, he’ll end up as the Protector of the Island in the final episode of the show. As Jack describes, while he hasn’t been sleeping to try to make everyone to feel safe, when Hurley comes up with something as “simple” and fun as a golf course, everyone immediately feels safe. It’s interesting to note that Kate first assumes the golf course was Jack’s idea.
- The dialogue from the usual “people yellin’ at each other over nuthin’” at the caves is taken from a scene deleted from the episode, in which Shannon is yelling at Walt because Vincent is drinking from the water supply and swimming in it. It’s possible this is why Michael comes up with the idea to build showers separate from the drinking water.
- This episode marks the first and last time we see Sullivan, one of the background survivors of the plane crash. We also meet Ethan, who turns out to be something else entirely in the next episode. Locke will blame himself for the kidnapping of Claire and Charlie, not having realised Ethan was an imposter after having spent so much time hunting with him, as we see him do in this episode. In Because You Left, we learn that Ethan briefly met Locke while the later was time-travelling, although it’s not clear whether Ethan remembered this or not.
- Sayid tells Rousseau Nadia is dead “because of [him]“. We learn in The Greater Good that he was actually on flight 815 to find her in Los Angeles, having no real reason to believe she’s dead. It could just be that Sayid was trying to gain Rousseau’s sympathy, because we learn in this episode that Sayid helped Nadia escape death.
- Rousseau’s music box serves as a metaphor for her human connection. After 16 years of isolation, she meets Sayid, who fixes the music box for her. As soon as Sayid asks if he can leave, the music stops playing.
- Nadia tells Sayid he’s “pretending to be something I know you’re not” and that “you have more than you know”. This fits with what Hurley tells him in The End:
“I think you’re a good guy, Sayid. You know, a lot of people have told you that you’re not. Maybe you’ve heard it so many times you started believing it. But you can’t let other people tell you what you are, dude. You have to decide that for yourself.”
- Sayid is the first to meet Rousseau and learn of the “sickness”. As far as we know – there’s still some theories out there – he’s also the only survivor to actually suffer from it.
- Sayid refuses to tell Rousseau why he wants to fix her music box. As we’ll get to know Sayid better during the course of the show, we learn the answer is he’s just that romantic; searching the beaches on the island for the most beautiful spot to take his island girlfriend, building a secret love tent (with flowers!), falling in love with his target before shooting her… Well, he did seem romantic before that.
Look deeper into the Eye of the Island with more LOST Observations
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