"Happily Ever After" is the 11th episode in Season 6 of Lost and the 114th produced hour of the series as a whole. It was originally broadcast on April 6, 2010. Desmond wakes up and discovers he's back on the island.


Original timeline (2007)

Desmond wakes. Zoe introduces herself and explains that he has been unconscious for the last few days and that she has given him a shot to help him wake. Desmond calls out that he wants Penny. Charles Widmore says that that will not be possible. Widmore reminds Desmond that he was shot by Benjamin Linus.
06X11Desmond back

"The Island isn't done with you yet"

Desmond calls for Penny again but Widmore says she is not here but that she and their son are perfectly safe. Widmore says he didn't have a chance to explain but even if he had Desmond would not have come. When Widmore tries to explain that he has brought him back to the Island, Desmond attacks Widmore and has to be restrained. He screams to take him back but Widmore says that he cannot because "the Island is not done with you yet".

Widmore leaves the room. Outside the room, Jin has been watching and he asks what Desmond is doing on the Island. Widmore says he will show Jin and tells Zoe to bring Jin to the generator room where they can start the test. Zoe protests that the test is not scheduled yet but Widmore insists and says to get it ready now.

As Zoe leads Jin outside they pass generators and capacitor equipment and major cabling as well as one large central piece of equipment shaped like a cube. Upstairs in the control room of the Hydra Station preparations are underway with laptops, monitors and electrical controls. Seamus says to Zoe that they aren't even close to being ready. They turn the generator to full for a power test, but shortly the circuit fails. Seamus sends Simmons(?) to check the circuit on the solenoids in the central structure outside. Seamus tells the white rabbit, Angstrom that he is going in there next.

06X11 the solenoid chamber

Simmons gets cooked in the solenoid chamber.

Simmons(?) goes into the outside unit but in the control room a technician finds the fault and immediately throws a switch to re-power the solenoids. They realize that Simmons(?) is inside and he is engulfed in shock waves generated by the solenoids. Seamus and Zoe run down to the main box and find Simmons(?) smoking and dead, his face charred. Widmore arrives and asks Zoe whether they are ready as Desmond is dragged, struggling, in. He looks aghast at the dead man.

The dead man is taken out and Widmore looks sadly at his face but orders Desmond to be taken inside. He says to Desmond that if what he has heard about him is true then he will be fine. Desmond is tied to a chair between the solenoids. Widmore tells Desmond that once the experiment is over he will ask Desmond to make a sacrifice. Desmond asks why would he do that. Widmore tell him that his son died here for the sake of the Island, that Penny hates him and that he hasn't even met his grandson. He adds that if Desmond won't help, it will all be for nothing as everyone will be gone forever. Desmond is locked in the solenoid chamber room.

06X11 Desmond gets zapped

Desmond undergoes Widmore's test

In the control room Jin demands to know what is happening and Widmore explains that Desmond is the only person known to have survived a catastrophic electromagnetic event and that he needs to know that Desmond can do it again "or we all die". He orders the experiment to be turned on. The closed circuit vision show Desmond free of his binds frantically trying to escape from the room. Widmore pulls the switches to start the solenoids himself. Desmond is engulfed by the flux.

Seamus and the other technicians go into the chaber and find Desmond alive. Widmore asks him how he is and when Desmond asks he tells him he was unconscious for just a few seconds. Widmore says his talent is vital to the mission and offers to explain. Desmond interrupts to say he understands and he is ready to start doing whatever it is that is so important.

Zoe and two others are escorting Desmond. Desmond explains his cooperativeness by saying a lot can happen in twenty minutes. Sayid leaps out of the bushes, flattens the two escorts and points a gun at Zoe telling her to run. She runs off. Sayid says to Desmond that "these people are extremely dangerous" and that he and Desmond need to go now. Desmond says "Of course, lead the way".

Flash-sideways timeline (2004)

6x11 LookingThroughAWindow

Desmond examines the Oceanic Airlines board.

Desmond is examining the Oceanic Airlines arrivals board. Hurley passes and tells him the luggage is on carousel 4. At the carousel Claire is struggling with her baggage and Desmond helps her. He asks whether she is expecting a boy or a girl and when she says she doesn't know he says she is braver than he as he is not a fan of surprises. He offers her a lift and after she refuses he says that he bets the baby is a boy.

Desmond is met by George, his driver. He asks to be taken to the office. George offers lovely ladies for companionship and when Desmond says he is here to work George says that that is why Desmond is the bosses right hand man and he is the driver.

6x11 CheersToMe

Desmond and Widmore enjoy a glass of whiskey.

At the offices Desmond and Widmore greet each other warmly. Desmond looks at a sailing ship model as Widmore speaks on the phone saying to "Get him arraigned and get him out of there". Widmore explains that his son, the musician wanted to combine classical music with Rock at a charity event that Mrs Widmore is hosting. He says that the base guitarist for Driveshaft overdosed and was arrested, he asks Desmond to babysit the guitarist and get him to the event otherwise Mrs Widmore will destroy him. When Desmond agrees to help Widmore is grateful that someone he trusts will do the job and adds that Desmond really has the life being free of all attachments. Widmore pours a 60 year old McCutchon malt whiskey to celebrate Desmond's indispensability.

6x11 ISawTheLove

Charlie explains to Desmond the need for spectacular, consciousness altering love.

Desmond drives to the Courthouse. An attorney comes out with Charlie Pace. Desmond introduces himself but Charlie ignore him and walks across the Avenue oblivious to the traffic. He walks into Jax, a bar, and Desmond joins him. Charlie asks him if he is happy, and when Desmond reels off evidence of his material success Charlie says that what he is talking about is "spectacular, consciousness altering love". Charlie tells a story about how he saw a woman in a dream while he was about to die from choking on the bag of heroin. Charlie says "I've seen something real. I've seen the truth." Desmond says the real truth is not this vision of love but to make a choice between continuing to drink or coming with Desmond to play at the charity show - with all its trappings.

6x11 HandWrittenDejaVu

Charlie's mission triggers a vision for Desmond.

As they drive away Charlie tells Desmond that the song on the radio is Driveshaft's first single and says ruefully that it was the beginning of everything great. Charlie then offers Desmond a choice between showing him what he is talking about or getting out of the car. Charlie grabs the steering wheel and they career over a pier into the water and the car sinks. Desmond frees himself and when he can't release Charlie's seat-belt he swims to the surface exiting through his open driver's side window. Desmond dives back and goes to Charlie's door. Charlie wakes, and staring at Desmond raises his palm to the window. For a moment Desmond sees Charlie show his palm at the Looking glass hatch with the words "NOT PENNYS BOAT" written on his palm. He looks again and the vision has passed. Desmond gets the door open and brings Charlie to the surface.

6x11 ExaminingHume

Desmond is having flashes while being examined.

A doctor examines Desmond. She asks whether he has had hallucinations, Desmond pauses and says that he's not sure. The Doctor wants to do an MRI scan but Desmond says he doesn't have time and needs to find the person he was brought in with but the Doctor insists he have the MRI.

Desmond is prepared for the MRI by a technician. He's given a panic button and the test is started. Desmond immediately sees the vision of Charlie at the Looking Glass hatch showing the message on his palm. He then sees a glowing cavalcade of his life with Penny and their love for one another. Desmond presses the panic button and says he must find Charlie.

Shortly after he asks at the nurses desk after Charlie but is rebuffed. He sees Jack and reintroduces himself. As Desmond asks Jack for help finding Charlie, Charlie runs down the passageway pursued by an orderly. Desmond gives chase and when he corners him Charlie says he is running because no one at the hospital can help him. He denies trying to kill Desmond but instead says that he was trying to show him something. Desmond wants to see his hand. Charlie realizes that Desmond must have seen something. Desmond asks "Who is Penny"? Charlie says he is not going to perform because none of "this" matters. As he leaves, Charlie says to stop worrying about him and to start looking for Penny.

6x11 MrsWidmore

Eloise Widmore insists that Desmond is not ready to face Penny.

Charlie rings Widmore to tell him about not having Charlie. Widmore is angry and tells Desmond that he can explain to Mrs Widmore what happened. At the Widmore mansion Charles asks whether Desmond has met Mrs Widmore before implying that she is a difficult person, but when Desmond introduces himself to Mrs. Widmore she is charming and says that its about time they met and that he should call her Eloise. Desmond explains what had happened and Eloise says that its OK and that her son will understand because employing rock stars means some unpredictability must come with the territory. When Desmond asks if she is angry, Eloise says "Not at all dear, what happened, happened".

As he leaves Desmond hears the name "Penny" read from a list of guests but when he tries to see the list Eloise intervenes sternly, and takes the list from him. She takes him aside and tells him to stop, that whatever it is that he thinks he is looking for he should stop looking for it. She says that he should not need to look for anything as he has the perfect life and has attained the thing he wanted more than anything, the approval of Charles Widmore. She adds that it is, in fact a violation. When he presses her about the list she says that he can't see the list because he is not ready yet.


Desmond meets the musician, Daniel Widmore.

At his limo, Desmond has a drink when a knock comes at his window. The man knows Desmond's name and introduces himself as Daniel Widmore and says they need to talk. Desmond starts to apologize for Charlie's absence but Daniel asks if he believes in love at first sight. Daniel tells of his love for a redhead who works at the museum. He says when he saw her it was as if he already loved her. He continues that that night he woke and wrote in his notebook. He shows Desmond the notebook entry and explains that a mathematician friend said that these were advanced quantum mechanics equations which would need a lifetime of study to understand. He tries to explain to Desmond that it is like something catastrophic was about to happen and the only way to stop it was to release a huge amount of energy, such as exploding a nuclear bomb. He rhetorically asks whether this life was not meant to be our life and that there was another "life" and for some reason "we changed things". He adds that he doesn't need to explode a bomb because he thinks he already has. Desmond says he doesn't know what this has to do with him. Daniel then asks why Desmond is looking for Penny. When Desmond says he doesn't know what he has found and that it is just an idea but Daniel tells him he knows and that what he found is love. When Desmond says he doesn't even know that this woman exists, Daniel says "No, she's my half sister" and he tells Desmond where to find her.

6x11 AreYouOkay

Penny asks Desmond if they met before.

Penny is exercising in the stadium doing a tour de stade. Desmond watches and then approaches her and asks if she is Penny, introduces himself and offers his hand. Penny takes it and they shake hands.

Desmond revives and asks what happened. Penny explains that he fainted and that she must have quite an effect on him. He agrees. She asks if they have met before. Desmond invites Penny to coffee and they make plans to meet in a coffee shop in an hour. Desmond returns to the limousine. George, the driver asks Desmond whether he found what he was looking for and Desmond says he did. George asks if he can get Desmond anything else and Desmond asks for the passenger names from Flight 815 saying "I just need to show them something".



  • This is the second episode, after "Not in Portland", to have no scenes on the main island.

Production notes

Bloopers and continuity errors

Recurring themes

Recurring themes
AnimalsBlack and whiteCharacter connectionsChildrenCoincidenceDeathDeceptions and consDreamsEconomicsElectromagnetismEyesFate versus free willGamesGood and bad peopleImprisonmentIsolationLeadershipLife and deathLiterary worksMirrorsMissing body partsNicknamesThe NumbersPairingsParapsychologyParent issuesPregnanciesPsychologyRainRedemptionRelationshipsReligionRevengeSalvationSecrets
  • The episode opens with a shot of Desmond's eye. (Eyes)
  • Hurley tells Desmond that the bags are on Carousel 4. (Numbers)
  • The Oceanic flight schedule contains all six of the Numbers in various places. (Numbers)
  • The man looking for a crossed circuit in the box is accidentally killed when the power is restored. (Life and death)
  • Charlie calls Desmond "Perky" (Nicknames)
  • Charles Widmore and Eloise are married in the flash-sideways timeline. (Relationships)
  • Charlie drives Desmond's car off the road and into the water. (Car accidents)
  • Widmore's LA office features a large painting of a set of scales with a white object in one dish and a black object in the other. (Black and white)
    Widmores scales

    A painting of balanced scales in Widmore's office

  • There is a white research rabbit with red eyes named Angstrom that is kept in a cage. (Animals)
  • Widmore tells Desmond that if he survives, he must make a sacrifice. (Sacrifice)
  • Widmore locks Desmond in the electromagnetic experiment chamber. (Imprisonment)
  • Desmond tells Claire that her baby will be a boy. (Pregnancies)
  • In the bar, Desmond gives Charlie two choices in which Charlie does not see as a real choice. (Fate versus free will)
  • The brooch Eloise was wearing while talking with Desmond is the shape of a starburst with two parallel lines. This is similar to the mark branded on Juliet. Eloise wears two of these marks with a total of 16 points. (Jewelry) (Symbolism) (Numbers)
  • The alt-timeline begins with Desmond's reflection in the Oceanic arrival board. (Alt Timeline Mirrors)
  • Desmond's reflection is also seen in the police station door (Alt Timeline Mirrors)
  • Daniel Widmore's reflection is seen in Desmond's car window. (Alt Timeline Mirrors)

Storyline analysis

Storyline analysis
  • Sayid attacks and may have killed Desmond's escorts. (Crimes)
  • Desmond attacks Widmore when he awakes but later agrees to help him. (Rivalries) (Relationships) (Irony)

Cultural references

Cultural references
(direct references only)
ArtAutomobilesGamesHistoryLiterary worksMovies and TVMusicPhilosophyReligion and ideologiesScience
  • Harold C. "Rabbit" Angstrom: The white rabbit's name was Angstrom. Harold C. "Rabbit" Angstrom is the main character in five of John Updike's novels (Rabbit, Run; Rabbit Redux; Rabbit Is Rich; Rabbit at Rest; Rabbit Remembered). The novels follow the human themes of life, death, and redemption. (Literary works)
    • An angstrom is also an internationally recognized unit of length equal often used in the natural sciences for expressing the sizes of atoms, lengths of chemical bonds and the wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation, and in technology for the dimensions of parts of integrated circuits. (Science)
  • CalTech: Daniel references this university in Los Angeles. (Science)
  • John Milton: Penny's last name is Milton in the flash-sideways timeline, which is likely a reference to John Milton, the author of Paradise Lost, a 15th Century poem which dealt with themes of the Fall of Man: the temptation of Adam and Eve by the fallen angel Satan and their expulsion from the Garden of Eden. It further touches on fate and predestination. (Literary works)
  • Nikola Tesla: Desmond overhears two of the event planners going over the guest list. After the planners say Penny's name, they say "Tesla, Nicholas." This is a reference to Nikola Tesla (1856-1943), an inventor and electrical and mechanical engineer who was born in Croatia, then obtained American citizenship at the age of 35. He is best known for his revolutionary developments in the field of electromagnetism. (History)  (Science)

Literary techniques

Literary techniques
ComparativeIronyJuxtapositionForeshadowing PlottingCliffhangerPlot twist Stock characters:  ArchetypeRedshirtUnseen character
Story:  FlashbacksFlash-forwardsFlash sidewaysFraming deviceRegularly spoken phrasesSymbolismUnreliable narrator 
  • Desmond was hated by Widmore in the original timeline, but is loved by Widmore in the flash-sideways timeline. (Juxtaposition)
    • In the flash-sideways timeline, Widmore tells Desmond he is "worth it" (drinking the MacCutcheon whiskey), but in the original timeline, he is deemed not worthy. (Irony) (Juxtaposition)
  • Desmond is not successful in rescuing Charlie from drowning in the original timeline, but is successful in the flash-sideways timeline. (Juxtaposition) (Irony)
  • A man is accidentally killed inside the box after a circuit was reset. (Redshirt)
  • Eloise tells Desmond, "What happened, happened." (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Widmore tells Desmond, "The Island isn't done with you yet." (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Charlie says "I've seen something real. I've seen the truth." (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Charlie says "None of this is real" about life in the flash sideways. (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • In the original timeline Minkowski brought Desmond to the radio room to talk to Penny, in the flash-sideways timeline Minkowski brought Desmond to the stadium to talk to Penny. (Juxtaposition)

Episode references

  • Charlie hears You All Everybody on the radio and tells Desmond that was his first hit. ("Greatest Hits")
  • Desmond saves Charlie from drowning, and sees a vision of Charlie drowning at the Looking Glass. ("Through the Looking Glass, Part 2")
  • Desmond see visions of him first meeting Penny from the original timeline during his MRI scan. ("Catch-22")
  • Daniel tells Desmond that he already detonated a nuclear bomb. ("The Incident, Part 1")
  • Widmore says that Desmond is possibly the only person in the world to survive a catastrophic electromagnetic incident. ("Live Together, Die Alone, Part 2")
  • Charles pours his 60-year old MacCutcheon whiskey, this time happily sharing it with Desmond. In Flashes Before Your Eyes, Widmore only poured one glass and told Desmond he would never be a great man. ("Flashes Before Your Eyes")
  • Daniel's profession in the flash-sideways timeline is a classical pianist. ("The Variable")
  • Daniel carries a book in which he has written down quantum mechanics formulas. ("The Constant")
  • Daniel tells Desmond that Penny is his half-sister. ("The Variable")
  • Desmond reminds Jack of their interaction on Oceanic 815. Charlie speaks of his near-death experience on the same flight. ("LA X, Part 1")
  • Widmore mentions the death of his son when Desmond questions his experience with sacrifice. ("The Variable")
  • Daniel speaks of seeing a woman, probably Charlotte, at the museum. ("Recon")

Unanswered questions

  • Why is Desmond willing to go with Sayid, when he has just killed the men he has agreed to cooperate with?
  • What is the sacrifice that Charles Widmore wants Desmond to make?
  • Why did Sayid spare Zoe?
Unanswered questions
  1. Do not answer the questions here.
  2. Keep the questions open-ended and neutral: do not suggest an answer.
For fan theories about these unanswered questions, see: Happily Ever After/Theories

Flash-sideways timeline

  • What did Eloise Widmore mean when she said, "it is, in fact, a violation," and that Desmond was "not ready yet."
  • How much knowledge does Eloise have of the true nature of the new timeline? How did she obtain it?
  • Who is Penny's mother?

External Links

Community content is available under CC BY-NC-ND unless otherwise noted.