Sunday, April 18, 2021

LOST: It Wasn't Purgatory, Season 2, Episode 18, Dave

On-Island Events: Hugo and Libby talk together on the beach; Hugo admits that he's been stashing his own supply of food in the jungle. Libby assures Hugo he has the ability to change and encourages him to destroy the stash. After he does, the other survivors celebrate the new supply stash that has been dropped in by parachute and begin dividing it. After Hugo refuses to be in charge of the food a second time, he sees a bald, smiling man he calls "Dave." 

Jack examines Locke's leg and determines it's broken. Locke pleads "Henry's" case to Jack but for naught. Now tied up in the armory, "Henry" claims the real Henry Gale was already dead and hanging out of the balloon when found by a search party. Sayid produces a twenty dollar bill which the real Henry Gale wrote on after crashing that refutes "Henry's" story. When asked about his peoples' leader, "Henry" becomes anxious and upset. Sayid nearly shoots him in frustration but is stopped by Ana Lucia.

As Hugo sneaks off to consume goldfish crackers, Dave again appears and whips his slipper at Hugo. He chases Dave to the beach where Charlie and Eko are working; they claim they didn't see anyone. Hugo seeks Sawyer out for drugs but when Sawyer mocks him for his hallucinations, Hugo charges him in front of the entire camp. Hugo packs a bag and leaves the camp; Dave interrupts him eating peanut butter. Dave tells Hugo that he's still back at the hospital and that the island and everything on it is all in his head. After leading Hugo up to a tall cliff overlooking the ocean, Dave encourages Hugo to jump over the edge in order to wake himself up from the delusion and jumps over himself, laughing.

Locke refuses to use his old wheelchair but accepts a pair of crutches to get around. In the armory, Locke questions "Henry," who refuses to divulge his real name and makes an odd statement about God and the rest of the world being unable to see or know about the island. Locke suggests that maybe he allowed himself to be caught in Rousseau's net or that his people were curious about the hatch. He assures Locke they think the hatch is nothing but a joke but that he also lied about entering the numbers into the computer. 

Libby confronts Hugo at the edge of the cliff; Hugo explains he has been imagining everything that has happened. Libby assures Hugo everything has been real and kisses him.

Flashbacks: Hugo speaks to a psychiatrist but avoids discussing the accident that resulted in his
hospitalization. Later after a basketball game, Hugo chats with Dave, who his doctor thinks is a bad influence. 

Hugo and Dave play Connect-4 with Leonard and Hugo steals Leonard's graham crackers. Dave also convinces Hugo not to take his required clonazepam. Hugo's doctor takes a photo of the two; Hugo cheeks his meds. A few days later, after sharing a small list of things he likes about himself, Hugo's doctor asks him about his appearance. Hugo admits that he believes his weight caused an accident on a collapsed deck that resulted in several peoples' deaths, and his doctor suggests his eating habits are about punishing himself. When Hugo becomes defensive and evokes Dave's name, the doctor shows Hugo the photo he took (and that Dave is not in it because Dave does not exist). 

Later that evening, Dave comes to Hugo and slaps him twice when Hugo accuses him of being a hallucination. Dave encourages Hugo to break out the hospital window but Hugo refuses, stands up for himself, and bids Dave farewell. On a reprisal of the scene where the doctor takes the photo of Hugo and Dave, a darker-haired Libby, who was also a patient in the hospital, watches from across the room.

Greater Meaning: We wait the entire episode for the payoff connection between characters this time, but the conclusion to Hugo's flashback shows that he and Libby were hospitalized together before the crash. This can be seen as another coincidental connection among the characters (ala Sawyer and Diane, Locke and Nadia, Sayid and Sam), which at this point is too common to be considered coincidental any longer, or could also serve to reveal Hugo and Libby's mental health as important factors on the island. Does Libby remember Hugo? He's said a few times that Libby seems familiar to him, but given the disoriented state she was in during the flashback, she may not have been aware of Hugo's presence. Hugo's orientation to reality appeared to be solid up until this point: he's been kind, empathetic, and has adapted his behavior well to the new normal of life on the island. Hugo's guilt over his weight drove his initial hospitalization; his experiences on the island have not brought about any negative consequences for others but have apparently resurfaced due to his budding relationship with Libby. 

Hugo wants to change but believes he is incapable, thus Dave emerges to maintain his negative relationship with food and himself. Libby, a clinical psychologist, is there both times to encourage Hugo and validate his feelings (throw the food away, don't jump off the cliff, you CAN change) but her own story becomes more interesting with the reveal that she herself was a patient in a psychiatric facility. Will Libby's struggles also be revealed? They both seem to be understanding people; can their relationship work?

Further Questions

1. Will Hugo and Libby become an official couple? 

2. Is Libby mentally sound?

3. Will Locke's injury heal?

4. Did "Henry" really lie about entering the numbers? 

5. Are the numbers just a joke?