With the series finale rapidly approaching, three major characters were killed off on last night's episode. But as the juxtaposition of the two timelines becomes more and more apparent, we can assume that death isn't necessarily "the end."

You see? Jin is dead in the original timeline, but life is relatively rosy for him in the sideways timeline.




So, dead is not dead, despite the fact that what happened, happened.

When Sun and Jin died, it was pretty fucking sad.



Shouldn't one of them have stayed alive for their daughter's sake?

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There was so much juxtaposition going on in last night's episode that I couldn't help but think about Super Furry Animals' "Juxtaposed with U," of which some of the lyrics are particularly applicable:

This is a tale of two situations
Mutual appreciation
Away from narrow preconception
Avoiding conflict hypertension

I'll list some of them briefly:
First, in the original timeline, Mocke saved Jack's life when Widmore's bombs went off. In the sideways timeline, Jack saved Locke's life, after her was mowed down by Desmond's rental car. Also, in the original timeline, Mocke wants to kill Jack, because he is a "candidate." In the sideways timeline, Jack wants to save Locke, because he is a candidate (for experimental surgery).

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Then we learned—through his convo with Jack in sideways land—that Locke lost his ability to walk through a plane crash. In the original timeline, he regained his ability to walk to through a plane crash. Also, in the original timeline, Anthony Cooper (Locke's dad) was responsible for Locke's disability, while in the sideways timeline, Locke is responsible for his dad's disability. Basically, he's a vegetable.

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Locke is super upset about what he did to his father, and can't forgive himself. In both timelines, both Jack and Locke have daddy issues. In the sideways timeline, Jack seems to be OK with the whole "what happened, happened" notion, and encourages Locke to "let it go." In the original timeline, Jack was always trying to fix things, and couldn't let anything go. However, now, instead of insisting on fixing things, he just wants to understand the reasons behind people's thought processes. Instead of twisting arms (or spines) to do what he thinks is best, Jack is letting people make their own decisions. Sounds like he's really into free will now, huh?

The jury is still out on how Locke will handle such advice in the sideways timeline.

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Also, in the sideways timeline, Jack meets up with Claire at The Only Hospital in L.A., where he gets an Apollo bar out of the vending machine and offers it to her. In the original timeline, Jacob got an Apollo bar out of the vending machine at the hospital and offered it to Jack.




This—along with Sayid's cryptic remark of "It's going to be you, Jack," the fact that the episode is titled "The Candidate," and that the series finale airs on May 23 (23 is Jack's candidacy number)—indicates that Jack is the official Jacob replacement.

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To round out these mirrored events, in sideways land, Christian Shepherd bequeathed to his daughter Claire a music box that played "Catch a Falling Star," a song that had no meaning for her. In the original timeline, the song was super important to Claire because she said that her father used to sing it to her.




But while there are plenty of comparisons between the two timelines, there were also plenty of juxtapositions taking place in the original storyline alone—like how Widmore threatened to kill Kate in front of the bear cages if Sawyer didn't comply with his wishes. In season three, Sawyer's life was threatened by the bear cages if Kate didn't comply with the Others' wishes.

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And then Kate and Sawyer found themselves locked up, once again, in the place where they had sex that one time.

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Then there's the blowing up Widmore's sub. (Locke blew up the Others' sub, a few seasons back.) And the fact that Widmore's sub was blown up with his own C4—just like his freighter. Also, the warning alarm on the sub was the same one as in The Swan station, when time was running out to push the button.

Speaking of pushing buttons, in the sideways timeline, while unconscious, Locke says, "Boone," "I wish you had believed me," and "Push the button." Basically, I think the point of all this "déjà vu all over again" is to illustrate the connection of not only the two storylines, but of the characters to one other. Everything and everyone is a part of a whole. A whole what though? So far, a whole lot of confusion.

The importance of the bond between the characters will no doubt become more apparent as Jack continues to bump into people from Oceanic 815 in the sideways world. (BTW, why do these people all remember their flight number? Have you ever remembered your flight number—particularly from a trip you took over a week ago? I never even remember my flight number when I'm on the plane. Whenever I have to fill out customs cards, I always need to rummage through my purse to find my ticket stub.)

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Anyway: Bonds. They're kind of a big deal. Which is probably why we saw Dr. Nadler, DDS, creating some dentures.




He remembered Jack (and their flight number!) from the plane, saying, "If memory serves, you were flirting with my wife Rose while I was in the bathroom. iIt's pretty weird, huh?" Um, not as weird as the idea that Jack was flirting with Rose. I'm more inclined to believe in smoke monsters and talking dead people.

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Also, doctor/patient confidentiality in dentistry? Doesn't exist. Except in Mississippi. I looked it up.

But I don't think anything drove the point home about the bond between these people as well as when Hurley, Kate, and Jack cried together on the beach when they realized that Sayid, Sun, and Jin were dead. It was pretty heartbreaking. They'd grown close with these people, and are finally showing that they give a shit about each other.

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So let's talk theory and strategy. Mocke played Sawyer like a fiddle and predicted all of his moves. He took the Widmore's C4 off the plane (which makes me think that Richard Alpert and Ben Linus are teamed up with Widmore right now), stuffed it in a backpack and did a bait and switch with Jack's backpack. Also interesting is that Mocke knew that the plane was rigged with a bomb, even before stepping on it: He killed those two henchmen who were guarding it, and immediately removed the one guy's watch, so he could rig the bomb with it.

So then all the candidates were on the sub together when they discovered it. Jack's theory may have been right. Maybe Mocke can't kill the candidates, but could predict that they would try to dismantle the bomb and blow themselves up. Just like with Anakin Skywalker, it was sad to see Sayid die just after he made the switch back over from the dark side.



And because we didn't officially get to see Lapidus floating in the water, I'm not going to assume that he, too, is dead.

Oh, and how hard, exactly, did Hurley look for that first aid kit? Because I found it, and I wasn't even on that sub.

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Maybe he just wants Kate to die just as much as the rest of us.

I'm thinking that Mocke wanted to kill all the candidates in one shot, because if, in the end, he's left with one, then I think he automatically won't win whatever game he's trying to play here. I think the candidates are candidates until the other candidates die, and then the last remaining candidate automatically gets the job.

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As for the idea that good vs. bad being turned around—and from the looks of the preview of next week's episode, it will be—think of this as a chess game, with the candidates as pawns, and Widmore as a bishop. Being the weaker side (since his pylons are down and since Mocke can't be killed with bullets) he should intentionally become a "bad bishop" by placing his pawns on his same color, thereby creating an "impregnable fortress." Usually this ends in a draw, but apparently, that's better than losing to Mocke. Now I'm just wondering if Desmond is the king that they are all protecting.