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A ‘Lost’ recap: For those who have lost track of ‘Lost’

Alexandra Kilpatrick | Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The fourth season of ‘Lost’ clearly marked a sharp transition in the viewers’ motivation for watching the show. The audience was no longer waiting to see if the passengers from Oceanic Flight 815 would ever get rescued from the island, but instead looking for an explanation to the secrets of the island.The fourth season is also marked by a battle between two groups, the Others and Charles Widmore’s science team:The science team: Headed by Charles Widmore, an extremely wealthy industrialist, the team arrives to the island via helicopter from a freighter, called the “Kahana,” at the beginning of the season. The passengers of flight 815 quickly realize that the team is not there to rescue them, but rather hired by Charles Widmore to explore the island’s strange properties and essentially exploit it.The Others: A group of people who have been living on the island for many years, long before the Dharma Initiative, a research project designed to conduct experiments on the island beginning in the 1970s. They do not want the island to be manipulated by Charles Widmore’s team.The Others include:Benjamin Linus: The leader of the Others who takes many drastic measures in a last-ditch effort to save the island. Linus is also slowly phased out as the leader of the Others as flight survivor John Locke begins to learn more about the island’s secrets and gains more of a leadership role among the Others. At the end of the fourth season, Linus uses a wheel underground to move the island in time and space, which causes it to apparently disappear.Richard Alpert: Linus’ advisor who seems to be ageless as he appears in several flashbacks at many different times but never appears to change in physical appearance. Flashbacks show that he helps Linus to kill off the Dharma Initiative in 1992, recruits Juliet, a fertility doctor from Miami, to the Others as a scientist in 2001, and appears at Locke’s birth in 1956. In the fourth season, he leads the Others to “The Temple.”Jacob: The Others’ highest authority, Linus receives orders from him and is the only person in regular contact with him. He lives in a cabin on the island that seemingly moves and is invisible to some people. Locke visits Jacob’s cabin, but he can only hear Jacob, not see him.Charles Widmore’s team, also known as the “Kahana” crew, includes:Miles Straume: a spiritualist who can apparently talk to the dead, an important characteristic on an island where people appear who are supposedly dead, including flight survivor Jack Shephard’s father, Christian.Daniel Faraday: a quirky, nervous, theoretical physicist, who recognizes that there are strange physical properties on the island. For example, when a helicopter takes Desmond Hume and Sayid Jarrah to the freighter or the Kahana, Faraday notices that prime dilation occurs, a phenomenon in which time begins moving slower when something is moving at the speed of light time. He also helps Desmond, who becomes unstuck in time between the years 1996 and 2004 while traveling to the freighter, by telling him to find a reliable constant in both time periods.Kevin Johnson: Flight survivor Michael Dawson, famous for yelling Walt every chance he gets, appears as a spy for Linus on Widmore’s freighter under the alias Kevin Johnson. He is the janitor aboard the “Kahana” and attempts to disarm a bomb on the freighter but fails and is killed, along with another flight survivor Jin Kwon.Other significant elements of the fourth season include:The flash-forwards: Following with the canon of the third season finale, the fourth season includes significantly more flash-forwards than flashbacks. These flash-forwards show the lives of a few passengers after they safely leave the island (yes, they do get rescued from the island) and give hints as to who is included in the Oceanic 6. However, a few flashbacks follow the lives of the supposed rescue team.The Oceanic 6: The six characters aboard Oceanic flight 815 who eventually safely leave the island are revealed in the flash-forwards. This group includes Kate Austen; Sayid Jarrah; Sun Kwon; Claire Littleton’s baby, Aaron; Hugo “Hurley” Reyes; and Jack.