Saturday, May 18, 2013

"LOST S1:E6 – House of the Rising Sun" Plot Summary

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Director – Michael Zinberg

Summary by Will Milton

LOST S1:E6 – House of the Rising Sun

Plot summary:

Character Focus: Jin and Sun, the Korean couple 

Sun uproots and smells a beautiful tropical flower as her husband labours catching fish in the sea. She looks down the beach and sees Jack and Kate playfully flirting as they prepare for a trip, joking about the doctor’s tattoos. Charlie impatiently hurries them along, pointing out that Locke – the “great white hunter” – is getting restless, and a thirsty group of survivors wants to reach Jack’s cave. As they depart, Charlie sarcastically mocks the pair’s obvious flirtation. Sun looks on sorrowfully, wincing at the sight of her husband slaughtering a fish nearby.

Flashback: An immaculately-dressed Sun is laughing with friends at a high-class restaurant. A waiter offers her champagne, which she accepts along with a napkin, giving the waiter a cheeky smile. As she examines the napkin, we see that the waiter is in fact the man we know to be her husband on the island. He smiles at Sun, and then departs. Later, Sun sits alone in a small gazebo by a lake, away from the crowd, and she is joined by the waiter, who kisses her. The couple quickly reveals that their relationship is a secret from Sun’s father, and she wishes to elope to America. Her lover demonstrates his honour by resolving to gain her father’s acceptance, and he hands Sun a flower with the promise of his love. The two embrace, their passion for one another very clear.

Present: The Korean man marches across the beach in an obvious rage. Sun calls out to him, but he sprints towards an oblivious Michael and violently tackles him to the ground before dishing out a savage beating and attempting to drown his helpless victim in the sea. Walt screams desperately for his father and Sun cries out for her husband to stop, but only a timely intervention from Sayid and Sawyer can tear the furious Korean from his victim. Michael is helped to his feet, and the enraged Korean man is handcuffed to a piece of the wreckage. Confused, Sayid attempts to get some kind of explanation from Sun, but she is unable to communicate.

In the jungle, Jack is leading the group to his cave. He explains to Kate that he found the cave through sheer luck as they arrive. The group looks in awe at the vastness and beauty of Jack’s discovery. Charlie suggests searching the scattered plane luggage in the area for useful items, and is flattered when Locke acknowledges his idea. As the group sets about filling water containers from the fresh stream, Charlie slips away quietly to indulge in his illicit habit. Pulling the drugs from his pocket, he hears Locke say “don’t move!” Startled, the Englishman begins trying to explain himself but Locke interrupts and repeats “do not move”. Kat and Jack arrive, and Locke reveals that Charlie is standing on a beehive! Locke attempts to keep Charlie calm as the others move off to gather something with which to seal the hive.

Back at the beach, a frustrated Michael is explaining to Sayid that he doesn’t know why the Korean attacked him. As far as he knows, he did nothing, but the Korean man continues shouting angrily from his bonds. Michael angrily insists he did nothing to provoke the attack, and suggests it was racially motivated. Sun appears to appeal for her husband’s release but Sayid insists the cuffs stay on. Hurley suggests the Korean man will suffer being forced to remain in the sun, but Sayid is resolute in his decision – as long as the man is a threat, he remains subdued. Sun looks despairingly at the other beach-dwellers as they begin to disperse.

Flashback: In Korea, Sun meets with her secret lover (the waiter) in an empty garden. He looks disappointed, but then surprises her with the news that her father accepted his proposal – Sun is overjoyed that her father has given the couple his blessing, but becomes reluctant when Jin explains that the condition is that he must work for her father in exchange. Despite Sun’s concerns, the couple are happy that they can be together, and he presents her with an engagement ring.

Present: Charlie is still stuck standing on the beehive, crawling with bees as Jack carefully attempts to cover the hive with a suitcase. Charlie’s fear gets the better of him and he moves, breaking the hive and unleashing a swarm of bees. The group scatters in all directions, away from the swarm. Arriving at the cave, Jack and Kate are forced to hurriedly remove their shirts to free themselves of bees, then just as they breathe a sigh of relief Kate is horrified to discover an old human skeleton among the rocks!

Jack rushes over and spots a second skeleton, using his medical skills to attempt to determine a cause of death. He explains that someone had laid them to rest here, and adds this discovery to the growing list of mysteries that includes the out-of-place polar bear and the French radio transmission. It seems the bodies have been here for at least 50 years, and Jack finds a small satchel on one of them that contains two small stones – one white and one black. Locke walks in, followed by Charlie complaining about being stung ‘several hundred times’. He awkwardly hands Kate her shirt, and she looks embarrassed as she explains it was “full of bees”...Charlie Jokes “I’d have thought Cs actually” but Kate is not amused. When Charlie spots the skeletons he asks “are these the people that were here before us?” This inadvertently lets slip to Locke that the group knows something he doesn’t. Jack states that one of these people was female, and Locke describes them as “our very own Adam and Eve”.

Back at the beach, Sun is tending to her husband’s wounds around the handcuff. He is clearly suffering in the heat, and growing frustrated. Sun reflects on the past once more:

Flashback: Sun walks into her apartment to discover a surprise gift has been left for her – a puppy. Her husband appears and explains he thought she’d enjoy the company as he’s having to work such long hours. She longs for the days when all he had to give her was a flower, but the moment is interrupted by a phone call. He has to rush off quickly as her father needs him for work. Sun looks on with a disappointed acceptance.

Present: At the caves, the group is finishing up collecting water. Locke volunteers to stay and help Charlie salvage the wreckage, as Jack begins describing the undesirable logistics of travelling to and from the cave every day; he suggests they move off the beach to live in the cave. Kate is visibly disturbed at the thought of leaving the beach, as it would suggest a resignation that rescue will never come.

Back at the beach, Walt sits a few yards away from the Korean man, watching him with curiosity. Michael arrives and shouts defensively at the Korean, provoking an angry response urging the battered man to move away. Michael takes Walt away, and the boy is full of questions about what happened. Michael apologizes to his son for suggesting the assault was racially motivated, explaining he said that in anger, but insists he hasn’t done anything to the Korean man. Walt reveals that his mother never told him anything about his real father, but Michael demonstrates that he knows more about his estranged son than the boy gave him credit for.

Sun pleads with her husband to let her go and explain the situation to the others. He expresses frustration at their inability to communicate, and insists that he shouldn’t have to explain himself to a thief!

Flashback: Sun is asleep on the couch in her apartment, her dog – now fully-grown – by her side. It’s late at night, and her husband comes in the door and rushes to the bathroom. She follows him, and finds him desperately washing blood off his hands and shirt. He is distressed but unharmed, and as she pushes him to explain he tells her that he has to do some very unpleasant things for her father. They fight, and he angrily explains that he must do whatever her father tells him, and he does so for the sake of their marriage. The shock and guilt is written on Sun’s face as she leaves the room.

Present: Jack and Kate are heading back to the beach. As they stop for a brief rest, Kate attempts to continue their playful flirting but Jack continues talking about moving to the caves. Kate voices her doubts, saying she isn’t convinced yet that rescue won’t come. At the caves, Charlie is struggling to get a moment away from Locke so he can do what he wanted to do before the beehive emergency interrupted. The wise old hunter follows Charlie like a shadow, offering him the opportunity to confess his secret. As Charlie continues being evasive, Locke tells him “I know who you are, and I know what you’re looking for”. The Englishman is overjoyed to hear Locke tell him he is a fan of Drive Shaft, and recognizes him as the bass player. The musician’s vulnerability begins to seep through, as he reveals how much he misses his guitar and his sensitivity to comments about his band. Locke confidently assures Charlie that he will see his guitar, which was on the plane, again, safe and intact. The hunter says he knows this because he has faith.

Jack and Kate encounter Sayid chopping up firewood just off the beach. After taking some water, Sayid explains the situation with the Korean man and details his plan to interrogate Sun to find an explanation. When Jack voices his plan to move people into the caves, Sayid expresses disbelief and refuses to “admit defeat”. As Jack begins telling people his plans to move to the caves, Sayid approaches Michal who assures him that he won’t be going; his priority is getting Walt off the island, so giving up on rescue is not an option. Jack gives a bottle of water to the Korean man, and then approaches Hurley, who has already agreed to move to the caves. Hurley jokes about the obvious attraction between Jack and Kate, and the doctor smirks as he tells Hurley to concentrate on packing his things. Meanwhile, Sawyer sarcastically greets Kate and jokes about how “the doctor and captain falafel” are fighting over her. He tries to get her opinion on who’s got the right idea, describing it as a clash between accepting life on the island and moving to a safer location, or remaining in hope that a passing plane or ship might spot them. As the pair exchange some subtle banter, neither is forthcoming about where they actually stand on the debate.

Sun notices Michael walking into the jungle alone and decides to follow him. In a small clearing, she watches him as he chops up firewood.

Flashback: Sun is at her apartment with a woman discussing redecorating the place. In her husband’s presence, Sun is told how lucky a wife she is, but he is completely distracted by a phone call and takes no notice. The two women retreat to the bedroom to give him some space, but when they have privacy they begin a secret conversation. It becomes clear that Sun plans to leave and this woman is helping her. Sun can’t reconcile with her husband and is resolute in her decision to leave. The plan is that during a trip Sun and her husband must take, she will make an excuse to slip away at the airport. There will be a car waiting to take her away, and she must remain hidden until her family assumes she is dead. She appears fearful, but assured of what she must do. Present: As she recalls that moment, Sun emerges from the trees to approach Michael. He is reluctant to talk to her until she reveals that she can actually speak English and wants to explain the incident with her husband. Michael is shocked at the revelation that she can speak English, and allows her to explain. She tells him her husband doesn’t know her secret, and tells Michael that her husband’s bad temper fuelled his rage after a misunderstanding concerning a watch that Michael is wearing. Michael found this watch in the wreckage, and Sun insists it belonged to her father and her husband’s desire to protect it is a question of honour. She pleads with Michael to help her resolve the conflict.

At the caves, Charlie attempts to slip away from Locke again but fails, and Locke decides to ask Charlie to give him the drugs. He explains to Charlie that a painful detox is inevitable, and giving up now would make it his choice. Locke speaks knowingly about pain and suffering, and convinces Charlie to allow him to help. As the Englishman’s vulnerability gets the better of him, Locke asks him if he wants his guitar more than his drugs, and asserts that the island can give him what he’s looking for but he must first give the island something. With tears in his eyes, Charlie hands the last of his drug supply to the hunter, who in return points to Charlie’s guitar lodged high among the trees. The musician is overwhelmed with joy at the sight.

Kate sits alone at the beach in quiet contemplation. As Jack calls her to come with him, she tells him she can’t go. The doctor is bemused at her solemnity over the matter, and asks how she came to be this way; what did she do? She replies “you had your chance to know”. Jack leaves, telling her to come if she needs him. She fights back the tears as she stares out over the ocean.

Further up the beach, Michael aggressively approaches the Korean man with an axe. The Korean man is terrified as Michael bears down on him. Unable to understand Michael’s words, the Korean accepts the return of the watch before recoiling in terror as Michael swings the axe towards him. As the axe impacts, Jin falls free from his handcuffs; Michael cut the chain and released him. A final warning is issued as the Korean man looks to his wife, knowing that she obviously found a way to explain the situation.

Flashback: At the airport in Sydney, we see the familiar scene of Jack pleading with the receptionist to let him put his father’s coffin on the plane. Sun waits as her husband queues, summoning up the courage to go through with her escape plan. Taking one final glance towards her husband, she begins to cry as she takes her first steps away. Their eyes meet one last time and he smiles, holding up a flower for her. She smiles back through her tears, and finally decides that she cannot leave. She joins her husband in the queue and he gives her the flower with a soft kiss on the forehead. She fights to keep her composure, almost overwhelmed with emotion as her husband remains oblivious to her torment.

Present: Nightfall at the caves and Charlie sits tuning his guitar. Jack arrives with his group of ‘new tenants’, which includes the Korean couple and Hurley, who sits down with his headphones on and begins listening to his music. As the music plays, the remaining beach dwellers sit around their rescue fire. Michael bonds with his son over a light-hearted conversation about birthdays as Sawyer stares intensely into the flames. Sayid sits beside Kate as she silently weeps. At the caves, Jack sits quietly beside Locke at a campfire, while Sun shows her husband a new dress she has found. Charlie softly strums his guitar as sorrowful images of Jack and Kate are juxtaposed, while the song whimsically asks “are you sure this is where you want to be?”  

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