By Jeff Jensen
Updated February 12, 2009 at 09:35 AM EST
Credit: Mario Perez/ABC

The episode was called “This Place Is Death.” And if you’ve seen it, you know why. It was a riveting hour, filled with explicit and oblique references to heaven and hell, marriage and divorce, and, of course, magical genies. Say wha?!?! I’ll explain everything in my TV Watch recap, posting here in a few short hours. But to get you talking, here’s my take on tonight’s big death (Spoiler Alert!):

The geek in me wants to start with Smokey, the frozen donkey wheel,and the significance of a Magical Jin. The gentleman in me wants tostart by apologizing to Sun for impugning her mothering skills (mytheory last week was debunked in the first scene: Ji Yeon is alive,well and skinny) and congratulate her on renewing her wedding vows. Butreally, we should begin this recap of the ominously entitled “ThisPlace Is Death” by paying our respects to the dead. So let’s swipe oneof Ms. Hawking’s votive candles and light one for Charlotte StaplesLewis, whose bloody passing was charged with mythic buzz. The timetravel sickness munched up more and more of her brain, then swallowedit whole. In her final wild-eyed, pale-faced moments, her mind becameunmoored and began to toggle between past and present. “Oh turn it up,I love Geronimo Jackson,” she cooed, referring to Lost’s faux hippy-erafolk group. (I get a Three Dog Night/”Road To Shambala” vibe off thename.) And she gave up some secrets. Yes, she had been born on theIsland. Her mom and dad were members of The Dharma Initiative. But Dadwent loco and Mom got spooked. She packed up Charlotte (“Why isn’tDaddy coming with us?” Charlotte murmured during her throes, perhapsflashing on the moment) and took her to London and told her that Islandwas just a childhood fantasy—a land of make-believe, like the Narniaconcocted by Charlotte’s literary namesake. And then this bombshell:“Leave the Island and never come back,” said a scary man from herIsland youth–a bogeyman with more than a passing resemblance to herwould-be boyfriend, Daniel Faraday. “I’m not supposed to have chocolatebefore dinner,” she blurted, her mind suddenly elsewhere. And then shewas gone for good.

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