|Episode no.||Season 2
|Directed by||Jack Bender|
|Written by||Javier Grillo-Marxuach
|Original air date||October 5, 2005|
"Orientation" is the third episode of the second season of Lost and the 28th episode overall. The episode was directed by Jack Bender, and written by Javier Grillo-Marxuach and Craig Wright. It first aired on October 5, 2005 on ABC.
Jack Shephard (Matthew Fox), John Locke (Terry O'Quinn) and Kate Austen (Evangeline Lilly) learn about the mysterious hatch from Desmond Hume (Henry Ian Cusick). On the other side of the island, Michael Dawson (Harold Perrineau), James "Sawyer" Ford (Josh Holloway) and Jin-Soo Kwon (Daniel Dae Kim) are imprisoned by people they believe to be the "Others."
Locke is participating in a support group, where he emotionally recounts the deception perpetrated by his father. Afterwards, a group member, Helen Norwood (Katey Sagal), approaches him in sympathy, and they become romantically involved. After spending the night together, Helen wakes up to find Locke getting dressed, claiming he is uncomfortable sleeping in an unfamiliar bed. He goes out to sit in his car outside his father's (Kevin Tighe) estate. His father confronts him, saying he knows that Locke has been stalking him, and tells him that he's not wanted.
To celebrate six months together, Helen gives Locke a present: her house key, under the condition that he stop going to his father's house. Locke agrees, but is unable to keep his word. Helen eventually follows and confronts him. She says he is afraid of moving past what his father has done, and of moving forward with her. She tells him it is meant to be difficult, because what she is asking from him is a leap of faith.
In the Hatch
At the underground compound, the confrontation between Jack, Desmond and Locke provides enough of a distraction for Kate to knock Desmond down. However, he gets off a shot, which damages the computer. Desmond claims that everyone will die unless the computer is fixed. Kate heads off to fetch Sayid via an alternate exit.
Desmond explains that three years earlier, his boat crashed on the island. He then met a man who enlisted his help in his sole duty: entering a code into the computer every 108 minutes. Desmond claims that "the end of the world" will come if the button is not pressed.
He directs Jack and Locke to watch a short film narrated by a scientist called Dr. Marvin Candle (François Chau). This film describes a project called the DHARMA Initiative, states the name and rough purpose of the hatch as an electromagnetic research station called "The Swan", and explains that the viewers must enter a code into the computer every 108 minutes. Jack believes that all this is just a social experiment, but Locke feels the film should be taken at its word. Desmond attempts to power up the computer, without success. He panics and leaves.
Jack runs after Desmond in the woods. Desmond recognizes him as a man whom he met in a stadium, and asks what happened to the girl Jack was operating on. Jack, upset, answers that he married her - but he's not married anymore. Desmond leaves, and Jack returns to the compound.
Sayid Jarrah (Naveen Andrews) successfully repairs the computer. Locke tells Jack he should be the one to hit the button, but Jack refuses. As the alarms sound, Locke asks Jack why it is so hard to believe, and Jack asks Locke why he finds it so easy. Locke tells him it was never easy, but that Jack needs to make a leap of faith of his own. With one second to spare, Jack presses the button. The clock resets.
Across the Island
On the beach, Michael and Sawyer discover Jin, being chased by five people whom Jin identifies as the Others. The three are knocked unconscious and thrown into a pit. Another prisoner (Michelle Rodriguez) is later dropped into the pit. She introduces herself as Ana Lucia Cortez, another survivor of Oceanic Flight 815. Ana Lucia was in the tail section, which crashed on the opposite side of the island from the fuselage. Sawyer tells her that he plans to shoot the guard the next time he appears. Ana Lucia suddenly grabs Sawyer's gun and calls for the guard (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje); she was simply a plant.
The writing team was afraid that the hatch scenes would be heavy on exposition and drag on. The solution they found was shooting the computer, which would create a crisis and tension as the device needed to be repaired in eight minutes, and also allow for new information to be given "on the fly".
This episode marks the first appearance of series regular Mr. Eko, played by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, where he was only shown briefly, knocking down three of the show's main characters with a stick. Akinnuoye-Agbaje was given the stick and told to "Knock those three guys out". Akinnuoye-Agbaje felt that "there's no better way to make an entrance".
22.38 million American viewers watched this episode when it originally aired.
- Damon Lindelof (2008). Audio commentary for "The Constant" (DVD). Lost: The Complete Fourth Season Disk 2: Buena Vista Home Entertainment.
- Staff (2007). "Q&A with Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje". Maxim. Archived from the original on 2009-02-13. Retrieved 2009-03-22.
- "Weekly Program Rankings". ABC Medianet. October 11, 2005. Retrieved 2008-07-29.
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