By Jeff Jensen
Updated February 23, 2010 at 12:00 PM EST

Why are you reading this if you haven’t watched tonight’s episode of Lost? Why would you want to spoil yourself by reading this dinky little snap judgment summary? I mean, that would be stupid! But hey: free country. Do what you want, but don’t say I didn’t warn you. And don’t say I rudely called you stupid because you’re just seeing things. Stupid. Anyway…

Tonight’s episode, “Lighthouse,” was not as awesome as last week’s episode, “The Substitute,” nor was it as mind-melting as the season premiere, “LA X.” But it was certainly better than “What Kate Does,” although it seemed to me that, like “What Kate Does,” “Lighthouse” was designed to 1.) Put characters where they need to be for next week’s episode, which promises to be more eventful; and 2.) Continue the early season work of reminding us of the essential redemption issue facing the episode’s featured character, in this case Jack. We were reminded that he is a fixer addict, that he is haunted by father issues, and that he has trouble letting go of past pain. We were also reminded that Jack has made a great deal of progress in these areas; at the very least, he can admit that he’s “broken.” But Jack is still searching for his healing fix, and his season 6 journey is about finding it. [UPDATE AT 9:47 PM PST: I am now 2700 words into my recap, and I am learning anew why my snap judgments of Lost are often flawed. The more I sit with this episode, the more I’m digging it. A lot.] What worked for me: Hurley’s humor; psycho-survivalist Claire, well played by Emilie de Ravin; Jack Shephard’s sideways-world struggle to fight through his father issues and connect with his piano prodigy son, David (but… who’s the mom?); and the mysterious contraption that was The Lighthouse. I think the episode wanted us to think it was some kind of mystical surveillance device. That’s certainly what Jack thought it was when he trashed the place. My theory? The Lighthouse doesn’t cast light outward — it shines light inward. More on this in my recap, which will post in the morning. Until then, help yourself to the buffet of bemusement that is “Totally Lost“…

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