Ranking Lost | Review

78. “The Other Woman” (Season 4)

Juliet as the titular other woman doesn’t do much to move the needle in terms of overall Island mythos, but the episode gives Elizabeth Mitchell yet another opportunity to show us why she is one of the cast’s best actors. While Locke, Sawyer and Hurley camp out in New Otherton, we flashback to Juliet’s long days as an Other.

Juliet’s relationship with the married man, Goodwin, who Ben ultimately sends on a suicide mission that involves monitoring the Ana Lucia and the Tailies, is the main focus of the flashbacks, a relationship that has significant consequences for the Juliet-Ben dynamic. Back in present times, Juliet throws down with Charlotte as Faraday tries to stop the gas inside the Tempest from being deployed, gas that Ben wants to use for murderousness.

We get the whispers, the ghost of Juliet’s shrink (and Goodwin’s wife – twist!) and, more importantly, we get the moment where Ben shows Juliet Goodwin’s dead body. Why? To prove a point. “You’re mine,” Ben tells her, and walks away. Leaving Juliet royally effed and us thoroughly chilled.

70. “One of Us” (Season 3)

In yet another solidly-directed episode, thanks to Jack Bender, we are given the “Juliet Begins” The episodes drama-heavy flashbacks gave Elizabeth Mitchell a platform to show off her considerable acting skills, and may go down as her best work on the series.

The episode centers on the role Juliet plays in addressing the Others’ problem with pregnant women dying on the Island – and Ben’s refusal to let her go when she discovers there is nothing she can do. Juliet’s Island origins intercut with the reveal that she is working for Ben, infiltrating the 815-er’s camp. One of the series’ best “twists” and final scenes, “One of Us” let Dr. Juliet Burke step up to the plate and earn her spot amongst the main roster of castaways.

38. “A Tale of Two Cities” (Season 3)

The third season premiere kicked off with one of the show’s characteristic fake-outs, showing us what seemed like an ordinary suburban book club full of people we didn’t know (yet) interrupted by the crash of Oceanic 815. What? Not only was it not where we expected to be, but it wasn’t when we expected either.

Like the first two season premieres, the flashback in this one focused on Jack, though his issues with his father and his ex-wife were not nearly as interesting as his first encounters with Juliet, a new regular cast member, in his holding cell on hydra island. Kate and Sawyer, also in captivity, aren’t lucky enough to get served grilled cheese, but must survive on fish biscuits. It’s just too bad they couldn’t work in the rest of the cast in this one.

21. “Not in Portland” (Season 3)

Richard’s first appearance in the Lost-verse centers on Juliet and her medical efforts to help her cancer-stricken sister conceive a child, despite her barren status. Juliet’s research catches the attention of The Others, as evidence by Richard’s pitch to entice Juliet to join him on the Island – before she even knew that it would be the Island.

Juliet is reluctant to leave her sister and job behind, but that all changes when a bus redrum’s her ex-husband, in a weird echo of a remark Juliet made in the presence of Richard.

The episode gives us an early look at The Others’ off-Island reach, one that never quite gets paid off as the series proceeds to an end. Moreover, we get more shading added to Juliet’s conflicted character, and are proud to call her one of our favorite visitors to the Island’s fun and games.

16. “LaFleur” (Season 5)

“LaFleur” was a crowd pleaser, through and through. Our Island time-skippers finally crash landed, permanently, in the swingin’ groovy 70’s and met up with the DHARMA Initiative, eventually joining their ranks .

Up until this episode, Sawyer didn’t have much to do in Season 5 except get headaches, leap through time and bark snarky comments at Faraday, trying to get him to explain what the hell was going on. This was the storyline though that brought Sawyer back front and center – and gave him heart, courage, leadership skills and a brain. Sawyer basically took point as he, Juliet, Miles, Faraday and Jin became members of DHARMA after stumbling onto an altercation between The Others and a DHARMA chick named Amy.

It then becomes up to Sawyer to “con” his way into their operation – using the name Jim LaFleur – in order to not give themselves away as displaced dimensional travelers. Sawyer even talks Juliet into staying on the Island, and what seemed like a temporary decision by Juliet turned into an amazing “Three Years Later” leap ahead and the revelation that Sawyer and Juliet were now a happy and loving couple. All of a sudden, it became Jack and Kate Who? The concept of “Sawyer and Juliet” totally snuck up on us and stole out hearts. They immediately seemed like they were meant for one another and deserved one another. It was a rare, rest-period of happiness on Lost.

And now that we know all the horrible things that were in store for these two it makes it even more comforting to realize that they got to enjoy the longest period of calm and bliss than anyone else on the show.

10. “The End” (Season 6)

We know, we know – half of you hate this episode.

As it became apparent that Lost had raised far too many questions to be able to wrap them all up in two and a half hours (unless it was literally someone reading answers off a list), it became increasingly likely that the finale was going to be polarizing, and that indeed has come to pass. Whatever their opinion of it, most fans would agree the finale focused on the characters, not the mythology, and it’s because of the strength of that character work that we’re ranking this episode so high.

After six years, this was the episode that delivered the emotional payoff for Lost, as we saw some very integral and touching reunions in what we’d been calling the Flash-Sideways universe. Seeing these pivotal moments for the likes of Sawyer & Juliet, Sun & Jin and Charlie, Claire & Kate was very touching and a reminder of the character relationships we’d connected with watching this show (and, in the unfortunate case of Sayid & Shannon, a relationship we didn’t connect with or truly believe in).

Meanwhile, the finale did a wonderful job of bringing closure to Jack Shephard, who’d been our protagonist for the duration of the series, but not always the most likeable or sympathetic of characters. Yet watching Jack’s story come to an end, as he peacefully (even happily, as he saw the Ajira plane escape) lay dying, with Vincent keeping him company, was an undeniably touching and powerful pay off to the story of how the Man of Science became the Man of Faith. This was complimented by our discovery that the flash-sideways was in fact the afterlife, and the knowledge that these people we’d invested in and had watched go through so much misery were indeed going to get a happy ending – even if it wasn’t in this life or on that island.

Source: IGN | Thanks Nanda!