This week Lost flips the alternate reality switch on Hurley with the episode "Everybody Loves Hugo" — a juxtaposition of the wording of season two episode "Everybody Hates Hugo."
While things certainly are different in Hurley's other life, the lines of the two worlds are starting to blur as some characters are becoming aware of another distinct life. Let's get down to business when you
- In Hurley's alternate world, Pierre Chang is dedicating an award to Hurley and his great life. The paleontology wing is named after him, and we see his other charitable efforts, which include things like a hospital and an "experimental farm." His mom wishes the ladies loved cool H, though, and she sets him up on a blind date. It's Libby who appears, not as his date, but because she recognizes him. She asks him if he thinks people can be connected, and in soulmates, then says, "You don't remember me, do you?" as well as "I meant everything I said." She's just another in the growing list of folks in the alternate timeline who realize that they experienced the original timeline. Dr. Brooks (Hurley's old therapist) pulls her away before she can say more. Shaken, Hurley visits a branch of his famous Mr. Clucks. Among those there: Samm Levine! And Desmond, who recognizes him from the flight (orrr does he recognize him from their previous entanglement?). Desmond is intrigued by Hurley's tale of Libby, which I think is because he now believes.
- Back on the island, Hurley is tending to Libby's grave when Ilana tells him her plan to get the dynamite to blow up the plane. Just after hearing the whispers again, he sees Michael, who tries to discourage the dynamite plan. Could Michael be on Flocke's side, having made a deal with him? Hurley takes the advice seriously and warns the group about the dynamite, specifically citing its instability. Ilana promptly blows up (!) in front of everyone (a Tricia Tanaka allusion?). Guess I didn't like her much anyway.
- At Flocke's camp, Flocke says all the passengers have to leave together on the plane the way they came, just as Ben had told the Oceanic six in LA. Sayid returns and shows Flocke Desmond tied up, though there was no need — Des is there willingly. He doesn't know why he's been brought back by Widmore, but I have a feeling Flocke knows why. While strolling through the jungle, Desmond and Flocke see a young boy, and Flocke bristles as he did when that blond kid showed up and told him he couldn't kill Sawyer. Are these kids young versions of island inhabitants, or some sort of messengers? Was he going to tell Flocke that he couldn't kill Desmond?
- In his alternate life, Hurley goes to the Santa Rosa Mental Institute, the same place he'd been a patient twice before. Though Dr. Brooks tells Hurley that Libby has "issues with reality," a quick payoff gets him access to her. In the room at the institute, we see a man playing Connect Four, as Leonard Simms once did. Also of note: there's a drawing of an island on the chalkboard with a large monster (a crocodile?) overtaking it. Libby says seeing Hurley on TV brought back memories of another life, and divulges everything from the "normal" timeline — the plane crash, the island, Hurley and her liking each other. He still has no recollection of her or anything she's talking about, but he asks her out anyway.
- Back on island time, Hurley finds a book with a Russian title and a mysterious bag. The bag seems to convince him of something, and then we see what that is: he destroys the dynamite (Black Rock go boom), explaining to Richard, "I'm protecting it." It? What is it — the Black Rock, the island, the plane? Richard doesn't believe he's acting on Jacob's orders and refuses Hurley's suggestion to talk to Flocke. Miles and Ben join Richard, but new man of faith Jack believes in Hurley. And a long-lasting Lost mystery is revealed: the whispers! Hurley figures it out via Michael, who is one of the souls stuck on the island who can't move on because of what they did there. To that end, Michael asks Hurley to tell Libby he's very sorry if he ever sees her again.
- On the real date they finally get to have, Hurley takes Libby to the beach (awkward choice, dude). He questions why she likes him, and when she kisses him, he gets flashbacks to the original timeline, like Desmond, Charlie, and Daniel had.
Desmond is watching them, which I suspect is because he knows Hurley is connected to the weirdness with Penny, Daniel, and Charlie. But it could also be a Widmore directive, right?
- At a well in the jungle (the well Locke went down during the flashes?), Flocke explains that the creators of the well were looking for answers, because it made compass needles spin (from electromagnetism?). The whole thing kind of parallels Locke's experience looking over the hatch with Jack. Just after he tells Desmond that Widmore is only using him and interested in power, he wonders aloud why Des isn't afraid of him. One creepy smirk later, Flocke tosses him down the well. To me, it's another indication that Flocke knows Desmond is a crucial element.
- Hurley surprises Flocke by entering his camp to talk, and finally, the two sides meet. Tellingly, Jack and Flocke have a familiar rapport, but boy is that "Hello, Jack" foreboding. Anyone else notice that Jack has now assumed Locke's old man of faith role, and even echoes Locke's famous line when he says he doesn't like when people tell him what to do?
- In the alternate reality, Desmond is watching Locke at the high school where he and Ben work. When Ben asks what he's doing there, Des says he's checking it out for his fake son (and uses his real son's name in the other world, Charlie). I did not expect what came next: Desmond brutally runs over Locke in his wheelchair! Is this a Widmore order, or is he flashing from the original timeline and exacting revenge on Locke just after Locke threw him down the well?
Let me know what you think of this episode below, and you may see your brilliant insight in my comment roundup. And if you're insatiable, you can always join the Lost Fans group in the Buzz Community!
Photo copyright 2010 ABC, Inc.