I have been wanting to write about Locke since Wednesday, but really needed to watch the episode again. I finally got that chance tonight - so here are some thoughts on John Locke's journey off the island and back:
As John Locke sets off on his mission to bring everyone back, he quickly realizes that everyone has moved on. Jack's a doctor, Kate's a mom, Sun has a baby. Sayid joined Habitat for Humanity, and Hurley is content. Not only have they moved on, they have moved on without the island. Locke begins to doubt his own "We are all here for a reason" speeches he was so well known for. The man of faith begins to doubt in the very thing he was prepared to give his life to save.
This leads John Locke into a depression and the only option he has left is what Richard told him back on the island - he must die. I think John had given up on whole island business. He did not care anymore - he just wanted to die. Then Ben knocks on the door. Remember, Ben knows that Locke needs to die to get back to the island. But he does something interesting. He restores him. Tells him that he is not a failure. Says that Jack has booked a ticket, just get Jack and you'll get the rest. Ben talks him down from the ledge. John Locke's faith is restored.
I've read in a couple of different places that when Locke mentioned Ms. Hawkings name Ben snapped and decided to kill him. I don't buy it. Ben had bleach and latex gloves with him for a reason. Everything Benjamin Linus does is calculated, and the mention of a name did not cause him to do something he was not planning on doing. Why not let Locke just kill himself? He had lost his faith. Ben could not let Locke die until his faith in the island had been restored. That by giving up on the island and taking him own life, he would never be raised. Thereby, Ben restored him, kills him and stages it to look like a suicide. This got it into the newspaper and got Jack to the funeral.
Back on the island, John Locke has risen from the dead. Those from the flight found him standing in the ocean - a symbol of his baptism. He was a loser off the island. No one would listen to him. He was weak, crippled, and manipulated. I'm not sure that outside deciding to kill himself he ever made a decision without being manipulated into it. John Locke on the island is a completely different person than the man he is off the island. Standing in that water with the mango, the old John Locke (Jeremy Bentham) was dead. John Locke is now focused, faithful, and ready to fulfill his destiny.
One thing I can't figure out. Why did everyone only refer to Locke as Jeremy Bentham last season and yet in none of the conversations in this episode did we saw did Locke introduce himself as Jeremy Bentham? I get that was his new identity, but he never told any of the Oceanic 6 to call him that. He did not tell Walt either, who showed up to see Hurley at the hospital last season asking about Jeremy Bentham. How did he know to call him that?
Some other random thoughts:
It took me until the end of the episode Wednesday night to figure out that the plane landed on the smaller Hydra Island we learned about in season 3. That is where they are - I have no idea when they are.
I think that will be the last time we see Walt. Tons of story potential there, but the actor was not into the part at all.
The people from the plane told Locke that the pilot and a woman took off in the canoe. Had to be Sun. They are heading back to the main island to find Jin. Not sure if they will find him, unless they have all landed in the same time.
Who in the world did Juliet shoot in the other canoe a couple of episodes ago?