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September 2, 2015

Lost: Not in Portland

by Erin Martell, posted Feb 8th 2007 6:51AM

Matthew Fox and Elizabeth Mitchell

(S03E07) It was a long wait, but "Not in Portland" definitely built up a momentum for the next fifteen weeks. We got our first Other-centric flashback, courtesy of Juliet, and a better sense of the pecking order (and family structure) on the "other" island. Plus Sawyer got to use a whole mess o' nicknames!

After this episode, Juliet has become even more intriguing. Anyone who can impregnate male field mice and maintain a professional relationship with an ex has got my respect. Dr. Juliet Burke was once a meek fertility genius working for her ex-husband at Miami Central University. When she wasn't fidgeting nervously, she was performing secret experiments on her own sister, who badly wanted a child. On a side note, am I the only one who had trouble picturing Juliet married to Zeljko Ivanek? The minute I saw his name in the credits, I knew there was going to be trouble (watch the "Roland" episode of The X-Files if you don't believe me). Juliet was a bit of a mouse herself in her pre-island days, and you have to wonder what happened during the subsequent 3 years, 2 months, and 28 days that made her a cold-blooded killer.

It appears that Mittelos Bioscience had a hand in Juliet's transformation. The "Portland-based" company recruited her under shady circumstances (did anyone notice Ethan outside Juliet's sister's apartment?), presumably separating her from her now-pregnant sister. Any guesses as to what illness sis was suffering from? FYI, there is already a website for Mittelos Bioscience for those of you who are interested (I'm not sure of its origin, though). I was hoping that Nestor Carbonell would use his Suddenly Susan accent in his role as Dr. Alpert, but no dice. How convenient that he forgot about Juliet's desire for her ex to get hit by a bus so soon after the ex was actually hit by a bus! At least Ethan Rom was there with tissues to make the entire scene extra creepy. This new company adds yet another dimension to the DHARMA mystery, something that I hope this season will touch on.

Back to the island. Thanks to Jack's OR stunt, Sawyer and Kate got a tour of the Other island, and it certainly was educational. During a brief shootout with Pickett and his minions, Alex showed up to offer some assistance. The trio hid under a camouflaged trap door that I'm convinced was an homage to Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. There were, of course, some strings attached to the rescue. Save Karl, save the world, or something to that effect. Alex, convinced that her boyfriend was being kept alive, took Sawyer and Kate to the last possible place he could be. Unfortunately for Karl, it was also the scariest possible place he could be. After tricking and beating a guard, played by Mac from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, the group found Karl being given the Clockwork Orange treatment. Strapped to a chair, Karl was being made to watch a hugely disturbing (and confusing) array of words and images. Among the phrases: "God loves you as He loved Jacob"; "We are the causes of our own suffering; and, "Think about your life." Hopefully Karl will survive the trip back to the island with Kate and Sawyer, if only to shed some light on that video.

Let's not forget about Jack, though. The man had to process a ton of information in a short amount of time--two islands, Ben waking up, Juliet turning on him only to change the game plan again, plus the small matter of spinal surgery. Why was Jack's unintentional slip-up during the operation necessary so soon after his intentional mistake? Was there not enough dramatic tension at the moment? Jack also got some male bonding in with Tom, who seemed keen to get to know Jack as well. Could there be another love triangle in the works? OK, probably not. Ultimately, Jack saved Ben and successfully removed the tumor. He also got Juliet to tell him how Ben persuaded her to help Sawyer and Kate--with the promise to let her leave the island. Mittelos Bioscience must have a strict employment contract.

The best moment of the episode had to have been when Juliet killed Pickett. Someone had to get the Death Pool rolling. That beach scene was one of the most effective parts of the entire episode. Kate's final conversation with Jack made her true feelings a bit clearer, and Sawyer noticed. The parallel between Jack's sacrifice for Kate and Alex's decision to stay on the island to spare Karl and appease her "Dad," Ben, was a nice touch.

So many questions! Will Karl survive? Will Kate return to save Jack after all? Will anyone mourn Pickett's death? I think we all know the answer to that last one. Until next week!

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I loved that moment when Jack made the unintentional mistake. I've always wondered in this show, and shows like it, why the characters don't just ask "what the **** is going on?", thus answering all of our questions. It seemed Like Jack and Tom were about to candidly discuss issues concerning the island, and a lot of our questions were about to be answered, and then he nicks an artery and we're still in the dark. Way to go Jack.

February 11 2007 at 5:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

@ 97 -Hugeliver

The black cloud monster and the invisible thing knocking down trees are one and the same. There is something on the blast door map from season 2 that seems to indicate that the polar bears were brought by the Dharma Initiative. Here is the quote from the map:

(map words in capital letters)

STATED GOAL, REPATRIATION (from late Latin 'repatriare' - to restore someone to his homeland)

and here are few quotes from the map that in my opinion concerns the MONSTER:


OR (these were quotes were right next together)




Here is the link to see for yourself and other interesting quotes:


Personally, I think that map alone gave us a lot of information and that's saying something, considering it was from the 'bad' season. Also, in one of their official podcasts the executive producers, Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof said that they never introduce a new mystery unless they know what the answer is...meaning that when they introduced the hatch in season 1, they already knew that Desmond was going to be there, that it was a way to introduce the Dharma Initiative, etc.

Akbar Fazil made a good point, it's about the pacing, imagine if in the first ten episodes you get The Dharma Initiative (and we find out that they're all just a bunch of Buddhist Nazis who want to destroy the world to bring world peace), The Others (hearing of them and seeing them-and as a result, don't seem as scary and the accomplishment of overcoming the odds are as satisfying as the typical episode of Law and Order), doomsday machine where if you don't press the button the world ends and Locke just decides after pressing the button 3 times he just says, "To hell with it, this is boring!"(and as a result the hatch door lands on Claire because...Bernard was fishing and he couldn't save her before we get to see what's so special about her baby), you also get introduced to a crazy french woman who has been on the island for 16 years and she talks about having a daughter who been taken and within that same episode the survivors of flight 815 say, "found her!" and then they're reunited (for that you go to Ghost Whisperer - not that it is a bad show, I'm just saying there are alternatives).

So, PLEASE, if you're going to complain, at least listen to the podcasts before you do it.

Here is the link:



February 11 2007 at 6:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I thought that Juliette's sister had cancer (she had a towel or somtin rapped around her head)if you didn't see "Lost survivor guide" a lot of the backround stuff is just fr fun to mess with us. Peace!

February 10 2007 at 12:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Akbar Fazil

Well Big John, maybe some of us like the show for the journey from day 1.

February 09 2007 at 11:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Big John

This show has totally Jumped The Shark - in the end it'll be a huge buildup that can't possibly be paid off in any satisfying way. Abrams will then say that "the journey is more important than the destination", take his money and go home.

This show is so OVER!

February 09 2007 at 7:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

#81, KJW,

I also think that the "Not in Portland" title has more signifigance which may be revealed later.
The Producers have made a big run at mysterious games and atmosphere surrounding the show that a seemingly superficial title for the episode seems too easy.

Obviously it directly refers to Juliet's scenario in her flashback; but I wouldn't be surprised if "Portland" is used as a clue in a Lost game or something.

February 09 2007 at 1:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

#43. Jack, Sawyer, and Kate had burlap sacks over their heads when transported to the other island IIRC from the last episode of season #2
So now we know Brian's never had a boat ride.
anyways, alright episode. same gripes as always.
Posted at 11:59AM on Feb 8th 2007 by beanspants

Mr Beanspants,

A personal dig and ambiguous commentary... nice use of cyberspace. Congrats for making your dig longer than the fine piece of commentary to what the blog is setup for.

February 09 2007 at 1:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I thought this episode was great. I like Juliet's character and now that we know more about her, she is less of a villain.

February 09 2007 at 9:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I wonder if Mrs. Klugh will come back....

February 09 2007 at 8:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

However, did anyone notice how Ben told BOTH Jack and Juliet that HE could get them off the island ... nice way to get them to do HIS bidding ... but yet, if it were SO TRUE ... how come Ben has been there SOOO long?

February 08 2007 at 11:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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