"Through the Looking Glass" is the twenty-second episode and the 2-hour finale of Season 3 of Lost, and comprises the seventy-first and seventy-second produced hours of the series as a whole. It was originally broadcast on May 23, 2007. Events come to a head as the Others engage the survivors at the beach camp. Meanwhile, Jack relentlessly leads the group on toward rescue, while Charlie struggles to finish his mission at the underwater station. This episode was the first to use a flash-forward instead of a flashback.


On the Island[]

3x22 HeadingToTheRadioTower

The Losties begin their second exodus to the radio tower.

Sayid has chosen Jin and Bernard to join him as the three marksmen who will ambush the Others. He makes Jack promise that no matter what happens on the beach, he will lead the remaining survivors to the communications tower; he tells Jack that he is willing to die but only if the others can be rescued. Jack understands and is ready to undertake the long trek to the tower. Before leaving with the others for the radio tower, Rose reminds Bernard that he is "not Rambo" and warns him to be careful. Jin speaks with Sun, intimately telling her to stay close to Jack. Sun asks him why he is staying behind to help, he tells her (in English) because they "need to go home." Sun cries and they kiss, Juliet watches further away. Once they are on their way, Naomi takes Jack aside and tells him that Juliet is not trusted by the other survivors. Then she shows him how to use the radio - in case she doesn't make it.

In the Looking Glass, Charlie is interrogated by Others Bonnie and Greta. He says that he found out about the Looking Glass from Juliet, who has joined the survivors. Bonnie and Greta go into the radio room to call Ben. Charlie sees the blinking yellow light from Desmond's vision of the jamming equipment. After he shouts his name to Ben, Bonnie tells Ben about Juliet's betrayal (overheard by Richard Alpert and Mikhail). Ben orders Mikhail to go to the Looking Glass to find out why Charlie is there. He has to admit he lied about the station being inoperable. Mikhail wonders what else Juliet has told the Losties. Ben tries to contact the Others' kidnap team but they are in radio silence.


Sayid, Bernard and Jin are left behind for their "Rambo" mission.

The Others have arrived at the beach, led by Ryan Pryce and Tom, and start searching the marked tents. When they realize the tents are empty it is too late - Sayid and Bernard shoot bundles of dynamite, setting off large explosions that kill Ivan, Diane, and three more Others (possibly including Isabel). Jin (using a pistol rather than a rifle) misses his targeted dynamite but shoots and kills two Others (Luke and Matthew). However, the three remaining Others capture Jin, Bernard and Sayid. Far away, Jack's group hears only two of three expected explosions, followed by gunfire. The group is worried about what might have gone wrong, especially Rose and Sun, Rose grows deeply concerned, and angry at Jack. She tells him, "If you say 'Live together, die alone' to me, Jack, I'm gonna punch you in your face." Jack urges everyone to stick to the original plan.

3x22 PunchYouInTheFace

Rose is concerned the attack at the beach camp didn't work after The survivors hear only two explosions.

Charlie tells Bonnie and Greta that no matter what they do to him he will turn off their jamming equipment so that rescue helicopters can come. Bonnie says only she, Greta and Ben know the code needed to disarm the jamming equipment. Charlie is flummoxed but supposes he won't need the code because the Looking Glass will soon be flooded. Bonnie asks what he will do when the station floods; he simply replies that he will die.

Tom radios Ben to tell him seven of the assault team are dead. Ben tells him to execute Jin, to make Sayid and Bernard reveal where the other survivors have gone. Jin insists that nobody talks. When Sayid says the Others will kill them anyway, Pryce knocks him out. Bernard panics and reveals that Jack's group is heading for the radio tower to use Naomi's satellite phone, and that Karl warned them about the early attack. Ben realizes Alex must have told Karl, and tells Tom not to kill Sayid, Jin and Bernard yet.

In the morning, Ben plans to intercept Jack's group and talk them out of going through with their plan to contact Naomi’s freighter. Richard Alpert asks if he can come along, but Ben orders him to take the rest of the Others to the Temple "as planned." Alex asks to go with Ben who to her surprise, agrees, saying it's a good idea, remarking that she must want to see Karl again.

Desmond comes to in the outrigger above the Looking Glass station and realizes that Charlie has gone down instead of him. Suddenly, Mikhail begins shooting at him from the shore, so Desmond dives overboard and swims down into the station. When he comes up, Bonnie and Greta are radioing Ben and Charlie has a chance to warn him to hide. Bonnie and Greta emerge from the communications room and demand to know to whom Charlie was talking. When Charlie gives a flippant answer, Bonnie decides to fetch a spear-gun (to torture Charlie) and strides toward the locker where Desmond has hidden. At that moment a distraction arrives in the form of Mikhail in SCUBA gear.


Mikhail gets his murderous orders from Ben.

Mikhail says he thought Bonnie and Greta were on assignment in Canada; they reply that Ben ordered them to lie. Mikhail takes out a knife and approaches Charlie; Charlie asks him what he will think when he knows that the station is jamming transmissions -- he is startled. Ben contacts the station and Mikhail speaks to him privately. Ben justifies the deception about the Looking Glass as necessary to defend the Island and ensure everyone's security. He orders Mikhail to kill Charlie and, if necessary, Bonnie and Greta too, and to make sure the jamming device continues to work at all costs. Mikhail asks how he can be sure Ben hasn't ordered Bonnie and Greta to kill him; Ben answers, "If I had, you would be dead already."

3x22 JackJulietKate

Juliet and Jack kiss.

Kate tells Sawyer that they should go back to the beach to help Sayid, Jin and Bernard, but Sawyer reacts negatively and looks distracted. She tries to provoke a reaction from him and points out how withdrawn and unresponsive he's been (since the events in "The Brig"), but Sawyer avoids the issue - including the possibility that Kate is pregnant. Immediately afterward, however, Sawyer throws Jack a look of consternation. Twenty minutes after the trek recommences, Sawyer announces that he's going back to the beach, telling Kate that he just did not want to go with her. Juliet volunteers to go with him, explaining she knows where to find a cache of guns and telling Jack it's something she has to do. On parting as Kate watches, Juliet kisses Jack on the lips and cheerfully tells him not to wait up. As Juliet walks away, Jack checks Kate's reaction.


Sawyer sends Hurley away: "Just look at you!"

As soon as he is on his way back to the beach, Sawyer is more like his old self, bantering with Juliet. He asks, "So... are you screwing Jack yet?" Juliet replies. "No. Are you?" Then Juliet admits she lied about the gun cache, just so Jack would let her go. When Sawyer asks why Juliet is returning to the beach she replies, "Karma." When Juliet asks why Sawyer is returning to the beach, he has no answer. Hurley chases Sawyer and Juliet, desperate to help his friends; but Sawyer dismisses him, saying that Hurley will get in the way and get people killed.

Alex asks why Ben let her come with him. He says he's delivering Alex to her new family, because she betrayed him. Alex argues that Ben mistreated Karl, which Ben excuses because he didn't want Alex to get pregnant. She asks why Ben can't just let the plane crash survivors leave the Island, but Ben's only answer is "Because I can't."


Walt appears to Locke.

Locke awakens in the DHARMA mass grave nearly a full day after being shot by Ben. He cannot move his legs but he manages to reach a revolver in a holster on one of the corpses. He checks the revolver for bullets, cocks its hammer and puts the barrel to his head. Sounds, possibly whispers or the monster, are heard in the background. As John prepares to kill himself, Walt suddenly appears standing over the grave. Walt tells Locke to get up because he has "work to do." At this pronouncement, a grin appears on Locke's face.

Still on their way to the radio tower , Jack tells Kate that Sawyer didn't mean what he said, it was just to protect her; and that he (Jack) did the same thing when he told Kate not to come back to Hydra Island. Kate asks why Jack is suddenly sticking up for Sawyer. He replies, "Because I love you."


Jack beats Ben in a fury.

Jack catches up to Rousseau, who tells them they're about an hour away from the tower. Rousseau says she'll take them to the tower, but that she's not leaving the Island because the Island is her home now. They look up and are stunned to see Ben and Alex waiting for them. Jack is full of rage at Ben but Ben greets Jack and says they "need to talk." Ben takes Jack aside and Jack grabs Ben's walky. Ben tells Jack that Naomi is one of the "bad guys" trying to find the Island, and if she makes contact with her ship, "every living person" on the Island will be killed. Jack refuses to surrender the satellite phone. Ben requests his walky back because there is something Jack needs to hear. Ben radios the beach and talks to Tom so that Jack can hear that the Others have captured Sayid, Bernard, and Jin. Ben tells Jack to get Naomi's phone and bring it to him. Jack asks why he shouldn't just snap Ben's neck, so Ben tells Tom that if he does not hear back from him in one minute, Tom is to shoot all three hostages. Jack is wracked with doubt but refuses to back down. When the minute is up, three gunshots are heard through the radio. Jack is shattered and beats Ben mercilessly. He then radios Tom to say that once he's gotten the survivors rescued, he's going to find Tom and kill him.


Mother meets daughter.

Jack marches a bloodied Ben back to the main group, orders for him to be tied up, then strides away followed by Kate. Rousseau comes and faces Alex who stands over her beaten father. Ben lifts his head and tells Alex that Rousseau is her mother, and Rousseau tenderly touches Alex' surprised face and then says to her daughter: "Will you help me tie him up?" Jack tells Kate it was his decision that allowed Ben to kill Jin, Bernard and Sayid. Kate asks why Jack brought Ben back instead of killing him; Jack says he wants to wait until after Ben has seen them all rescued.

Inside the Looking Glass, Charlie is still tied up near the moon pool. Mikhail checks that Bonnie and Greta are the only ones who know the jamming code, and that the jamming mechanism will continue to function if the station is flooded. Then he shoots and kills Greta. Bonnie runs but Mikhail shoots her in the back; before he can finish her off, Desmond emerges from the locker and shoots Mikhail in the chest with a spear-gun and he collapses apparently dead. Charlie convinces Bonnie that Ben has betrayed her loyalty, and she can gain revenge by telling him the code to disable the jamming signal. She starts to tell him the code numbers, but her life is ebbing, so she tells Charlie the code will play The Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations" when entered on the numeric keypad because it was "programmed by a musician." She has gasped her last.

Ryan hit by van

Hurley drives the DHARMA van into the beach camp.

At the beach, Tom is telling Pryce that Ben has "lost it" and they should have actually killed Sayid, Bernard and Jin instead of doing what Pryce reminds him "was an order": firing bullets into the sand. Sawyer and Juliet watch from the jungle, hesitating because they are unarmed and outnumbered. Suddenly, Hurley drives the DHARMA van out of the jungle and accelerates toward the Others. Tom dives out of the way, but Pryce stands his ground trying to shoot Hurley; Hurley runs him over and kills him. Sawyer grabs Pryce's gun. Jason is distracted from guarding Sayid, Bernard and Jin so Sayid, using only his feet, brings him down and breaks his neck. Juliet grabs Tom's gun and he surrenders, but Sawyer shoots him in the chest and says, "That's for taking the kid off the raft". ("Exodus, Part 2") Hurley says it was over and Tom had surrendered but Sawyer responds, "I didn’t believe him."

Hurley uses Tom’s walkie-talkie to announce their victory over the Others' kidnapping party, and warn the rest of the Others they will be blown up if they attack the beach camp again. Jack hears the message on Ben's walkie-talkie and asks Hurley about Bernard, Sayid and Jin. Hurley proudly confirms that he has saved them all, to the joy of Jack's group. Claire asks about Charlie, but Hurley says he isn't back yet.


Mikhail shows Charlie his hand grenade and pulls the pin.

Inside the Looking Glass, Desmond fetches SCUBA gear while Charlie disables the jamming equipment by playing "Good Vibrations" on the control pad and the yellow light goes off. Charlie remarks, "So much for fate," and turns to leave, but his attention is grabbed by an incoming transmission. On a video screen, he speaks to a woman whose image crystallizes and shows it is Penny (she asks how Charlie got this frequency, implying that she is responding to a call rather than initiating the call). Charlie calls Desmond and Penny hears his name called and finds out from Charlie that he is well. Charlie talks about the freighter and Naomi; but Penny, quite confused, says she is not on a boat and asks, "Who is Naomi?"


Charlie's "final words": "NOT PENNY'S BOAT".

Desmond notices that Mikhail's body is missing. Mikhail appears at Charlie’s porthole brandishing a hand grenade. Charlie closes and locks the communication room's watertight door as Desmond runs up and briefly sees Penny's face on the monitor. Mikhail smiles as he detonates the grenade; the porthole shatters and water pours into the compartment where Charlie is now confined. Desmond tries in vain to break the door’s window. As the room fills with water Charlie accepts fate and writes a message on his hand and presses it against the door’s window for Desmond to read: NOT PENNYS BOAT. As he drowns, Charlie makes the sign of the Cross.

As Charlie dies, baby Aaron starts sobbing. Naomi's phone finally shows a green light, meaning the jamming device is disabled, but it only receives Rousseau's old distress signal, but Rousseau says that it doesn't matter because they have arrived at the radio tower. Naomi tells Claire that her boyfriend, Charlie, "just got us rescued."


Locke appears out of the blue on his own mission to stop calling the freighter.

Rousseau tells Alex she recorded her message 16 years ago, three days before Alex’s birth. Rousseau switches her message off. Ben, tied to a tree, begs Jack not to use the phone, saying it will be a mistake and "the beginning of the end." Just as Naomi gets a connection, she falls to the ground with a knife in the back, thrown by Locke. Revolver in hand, Locke threatens to shoot Jack to prevent him using the phone. Ben urges Locke to kill Jack but Rousseau knocks Ben out. Jack stands his ground, telling Locke, "You're done keeping me on this island." Locke can't pull the trigger, but tells Jack, "You're not supposed to do this," before walking away.

Minkowski answers the phone from the Freighter. Jack explains who he is and mentions Naomi's name, which Minkowski recognizes. Jack asks if Minkowski can get a fix on his location; Minkowski tells him someone is being sent to the Island immediately. Ben looks on helplessly as the survivors celebrate in anticipation of rescue. Jack is overcome with relief and on the brink of tears.


3x22 jack bridge

Jack stands on the bridge, prepared to jump and commit suicide.

Disheveled and depressed, a bearded Jack sits on an Oceanic Airlines airplane. He indicates to the stewardess the empty cup in his hand, and requests "another one of these" but she refuses, telling him they will be landing in 20 minutes. Jack says that "20 minutes is a long time." She offers him a newspaper instead. He notices an article in the newspaper and rips it out; it's an obituary. He drives his car and pulls up on the side of the Sixth Street Bridge, crying while looking at the newspaper clipping. He makes a call to someone, but only gets through to voice mail. After leaving a message about having read the contents of the clipping, he steps from the vehicle. He climbs up onto the ledge of the bridge, looks down at the concrete below and then up and murmurs "forgive me." Just as he is leaning forward to jump, a fiery car crash occurs behind him. He rushes to assist the victims.


A pregnant Sarah visits Jack in the emergency.

Jack is being stitched up at a hospital when a pregnant Sarah enters. He wonders why she has come; she states that she is still listed as his emergency contact. She asks him if he's drunk, which he denies. She asks him what he was doing driving around at 2 a.m., but he deflects the question by asking her if she can give him a ride. She states that it "would not be appropriate," and leaves.

Jack is at his hospital at the bedside of the woman from the crash. Jack takes some oxycodone pills, just before Dr. Hamill, the new chief of surgery, enters. The woman has a spinal injury and Jack wants to operate. Hamill says it is all under control and tells him to go home have a drink and rest. He asks whether Jack hasn't done enough as he is now a hero having rescued the woman and her son. As he leaves the hospital the woman's eight-year-old son waves at him.


Jack is the only mourner at the funeral parlor.

Jack is driving while listening to Nirvana's "Scentless Apprentice" with the newspaper clip in one hand. He parks, and again calls on his cellphone, but the call goes to voicemail again. He crosses the street careless of the oncoming traffic and enters the Hoffs-Drawlar Funeral Parlor. The casket is closed and there are no mourners. The funeral director steps in and informs Jack that he is the only one to come to the viewing. He then asks Jack if he is friend or family of the deceased; Jack replies that he is "neither." When asked if he wants the casket opened, Jack says no and the director leaves. Jack lays a hand on the casket, appearing deeply saddened. He swallows his last pill and leaves.

At a pharmacy Jack is making a scene trying to get his prescription of oxycodone filled, but he has used up all his refills. While arguing with the pharmacist he is recognized by a man as the hero from the news. He denies being a hero. He tries to give the pharmacist a prescription he has written for himself, but she refuses to accept it. He then tries to hand the pharmacist a prescription from his father. When she wants to call in to confirm the prescription, Jack says that his father is out of town right now, becomes angry and storms off, knocking over a rack of sunglasses on his way out.


Jack, quite out of it, tells Dr. Hamill that he can't help him.

Unable to get his fix, Jack raids his hospital's supply of oxycodone. When he comes out of the medicine room, he is quite intoxicated, possibly drunk. Hamill asks him what he is doing. Jack replies that he was trying to find out how the surgery went. Hamill says he left voice messages for Jack, but Jack claims his phone is broken. Hamill tells him Mrs. Arlen's back surgery went well, however the woman remembers seeing a man about to jump off the bridge which caused her to lose control of her car. Hamill quizzes Jack on how he got to the crash so fast. Jack begins ranting about how long he has worked at the hospital, and how Hamill doesn't know anything about him or what he has been through. Hamill asks him how much he has had to drink; Jack replies by telling Hamill to get his father "down here" and if Jack is more drunk than his father is, then Dr. Hamill can fire him. When Hamill explains that he is trying to help him, Jack yells "You can't help me."

In his messy apartment, full of dirty dishes, maps and atlases, and empty bottles Jack is propped up against a wall sitting on the floor. He is swigging from a bottle of tequila. He finally reaches the person he has been desperately calling. He convinces them to meet him at the airport, adding "you know where."


Jack draws near to Kate, trying to convince her to "go back".

Outside the airport's gate at the end of a runway, a car pulls up behind Jack's, and out steps Kate. She says she saw him on the news and Jack explains: "Old habits." She tells him that he looks terrible and asks why he called her, he pulls out the newspaper clipping and says he had hoped to see her at the funeral. She replies, "Why would I go to the funeral?" Jack then confesses that he has been flying a lot. Practically every Friday night, he has been using the "Golden Pass" that Oceanic had given him. On each flight he hopes that the plane will crash and he will be on the Island again. He tells her he doesn't care about anyone else on board, that with every bump he prays that he can get back. He tells her he is sick of lying and that they made a mistake and that they weren't supposed to leave. Kate says "Yes, we were." Kate tells him she has to go because "he" will be wondering where she is. She says goodbye and as she is driving away he screams, "We have to go back, Kate! We have to go back!" as a plane takes off from the airport overhead.


3x22 hoff drawlar anagram

The funeral parlor sign, a notable anagram.

  • In the original version of the episode, this is one of the few instances where a Previously on LOST segment was not included.
  • This episode is split into two parts on the Season 3 DVD release, worldwide Blu-ray releases, and streaming.
    • The original ABC broadcast is the only version that that ran for two straight hours.
  • This episode features the last appearance of Sarah Shephard (Julie Bowen) in the show.
  • Charlie's death was voted number eight in the UK TV special 'Top 50 TV Endings'.
  • The two or three female whispers that Locke hears as he is about to shoot himself and seconds before Walt appears to him are very unclear. The most agreed upon interpretations are: "Help me", "Naomi. I don't know that name" and "I have hell to pay".
  • According to the enhanced version of this episode, the mission Charlie goes on to stop the jamming device was partly inspired by Han Solo's mission on Endor, during the movie The Return of the Jedi.
  • The audible numbers Bonnie tells Charlie as the password are: 5 4 5 8 7 7 5 5 4 3 7 7 6 1 1 3. For more information see the main article subsection: The Looking Glass#Security code
  • The knife that Locke uses to stab Naomi is a SOG Tigershark. The SOG Knives website has confirmed this.[1]
  • This is Tom's last living appearance. He later appeared in flashbacks during Season 4.
  • Pryce says sayonara (Japanese for "goodbye") to Jin, who is Korean.

Newspapers around Jack.

*Among the newspapers in Jack's apartment is The Honolulu Advertiser, which is the morning paper in Oahu, while the afternoon newspaper is The Honolulu Star-Bulletin.

  • Through the course of the episode, Jack is called a "hero" by three people.
  • The license plate of the car which Jack walked in front of to enter the funeral parlor is 3PCI258.
  • Jack's automobile license plate is 2SAQ321, the same as Catherine Keener's character (Trish) in The 40-Year-Old Virgin, and the same as was used on one of the Mini Coopers in the chase scene in The Italian Job.
  • Kate's automobile license plate is 4QKD695.
  • Jack's cell phone in the map scenes of the flash forward is a Motorola KRZR K1m phone released in late 2006.
  • Kate's phone number is 310-555-0148. The area code 310 could be located in West Los Angeles or the South Bay, but since it includes Catalina Island, Malibu and Compton, one may conclude that Kate lives in the Westchester/Marina del Rey area, which is adjacent to where she meets Jack at LAX.
  • The off-island scenes in this episode are flash-forwards, not flashbacks as the viewer might believe. This is the first episode of the series to feature a flash-forward, a device that would later be used regularly throughout Season 4 and a few times in Season 5.
  • The bridge in which Jack plans to jump from is the Sixth Street Viaduct in Los Angeles. In 2016, the bridge was demolished to make way for a replacement due to safety concerns around the integrity of the structure. [1]
    • This was the only scene in the entire show to be filmed on-location on the U.S. mainland.

Jack's maps[]

  • There is a partially visible world map in the lower left-hand corner of the frame of the shot with the maps, lamp, pill bottle, liquor bottle, ruler, and compass right before Jack gets a call. This map shows strings attached to push pins in different locations of the Americas, including what looks like the North of Brazil (Amazon region), somewhere near U.S./Mexico border on the Gulf of Mexico, one in the south eastern U.S., one in Canada, and an indeterminate number on the West Coast in the SoCal area. All these strings lead out of frame to an unseen point west of the Americas in Pacific Ocean.
  • The Atlas Jack has is open at a map of Britain (the main one at the top) and of Kent, in England, underneath it.
Article small

The newspaper clipping.

Newspaper clipping[]

Main article: Newspaper clipping

Production notes[]

  • For the second time of Season 3, all current cast members appear.
    • This is the only season finale in which all current cast members appeared in both hours of the episode.
  • This is the last episode to feature Claire in the beach camp.
  • Executive producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, who also wrote this episode, made separate voice cameos.
    • Lindelof voiced the captain apologizing for turbulence on the PA.
    • Cuse voiced the off-screen news reporter on "Action 8 News" describing the car crash.
  • Malcolm David Kelley and Julie Bowen both appeared in this episode, and are listed in the opening credits. However, to avoid ruining the surprise of their appearances, they were not credited in the press release by ABC.
  • Malcolm David Kelley was shot at an upward angle, which disguised his obvious growth.
  • Unlike the previous two season finales ("Exodus, Part 2" and "Live Together, Die Alone"), this episode wasn't shown in two parts on the United Kingdom and Australia airings. The first two seasons were shown on Channel 4 in the UK, whereas the third season was bought by Sky One. RTE 2 in the Republic of Ireland also showed this episode in one viewing. Other countries (such as Germany) still aired the episode in two parts, however.
    • For the two-part version, a conversation between Jack and Kate originally placed between Locke's encounter with Walt and Jack's flash-forward scene at the funeral parlor was moved to a slightly earlier position, to make space for the "Previously on Lost" segment at the beginning of the second part. As a result, part 1 ends with the Locke/Walt scene, and part 2 immediately starts with the flash-forward.
  • A detailed synopsis of this episode, including the climactic "snake in the mailbox," was leaked onto the Internet several weeks before airing by Lostfan108. This created such a controversy that ABC, Disney, and producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse decided to investigate how the leak occurred.
  • The hospital scenes with Sarah were filmed on the set of Grey's Anatomy, another ABC show. [2]
  • Edward Kitsis came up with the idea of Hurley running over Ryan Pryce in the DHARMA van. (Comic conventions transcript/Comic Con 2007)
  • On Wednesday, January 30, 2008, ABC premiered a special version of "Through the Looking Glass", enhanced with on-screen facts and back story. This enhanced version included text on the lower third of the screen, letting viewers in on clues in the show, and providing back story to catch new viewers up for Season 4.
  • A "Lost: On Location" featurette for this episode is available on the Season 3 DVD.


Main article: Awards

This episode won first place in AOL's "Primetime Poll" results for the 2006–2007 television season for "Best Season-Ending Cliffhanger" [3], and also won the same award for the "Editor's Pick". [4]

Bloopers and continuity errors[]

On the Island[]

  • Ben labeled the entry in his diary as being written September 12, but it was actually December 20. (Oceanic 815 didn't crash until September 22.)
  • When the Losties leave the beach to head for the radio tower, they start walking with the sea on their right side. Later on, they are walking with the sea on their left side.
  • When Kate is talking to Jack while she was getting a rock out of her shoe, her hairstyle constantly changes. It goes from all scrunched behind her head, to having her hair partly over her shoulder.
  • After beating up Ben, and after Rousseau asks Alex to help her tie up Ben, Jack walks up toward the mountain-top with a machete tucked into his backpack. When the shot shifts to show him taking off the pack, the machete is gone.
  • When Ben meets Jack's group en route to the radio tower, we see Kate leave the group to double around Ben and check for tracks. But in the next shot when Jack starts to approach Ben, Kate can still be seen standing next to Rousseau in the background.
  • It is unlikely that the radio tower on the island and a modern satellite radio would work on anywhere near the same frequencies. Most likely the radio tower is broadcasting somewhere between 80-200MHz analog and the phone would probably operate in the 1600MHz or higher range using a digital signal.
    • Removing the cartridge from the player at the radio tower would cease the transmission, but the transmitter would still broadcast dead air with the same amount of interference until it was turned off (This was corrected on the DVD, where the red button is pushed before the cartridge is removed).

In the Looking Glass[]

  • When Bonnie and Greta are interrogating Charlie, they decide to go and call Ben in the comm room. Bonnie walks in through the open door, but in the next shot, the door is closed and she is seen opening the door and walking through again.
  • Also during the same scene when Bonnie and Greta are interrogating Charlie, right after he says, "Let's call Ben," there is blood all over his right cheek. In the next shot the blood is gone despite him being tied up.
  • The video of the scene does not match with the audio, nor does the video match the code as given by Bonnie. For example in the audio, the second and third notes are different, yet the video shows Charlie pressing the same note (5).
  • Charlie knows that he needs to enter notes from the Beach Boys' song "Good Vibrations" to stop the jamming signal, but he enters the notes that go with the verse, "Got to keep those lovin' good vibrations a-happenin' with her," with no clue that this is the correct verse.
  • The grenade is in Mikhail's right hand originally. When it zooms in on him releasing the trigger, the grenade is in his left hand. When it zooms out, it's in his right again.
  • When Charlie has his hand pressed up against the glass, the message "NOT PENNY'S BOAT" is re-written in a different handwriting after the camera cut from Charlie to Desmond then back to Charlie.


  • At the beginning of the episode, Jack picks up the newspaper from the left seat with his left hand, but in the next shot, he takes it with his right hand.
  • When Jack stands up to talk to his ex-wife Sarah at the hospital, the bandage on his forehead changes to a much larger bandage, and then changes back to the normal bandage in the next shot.
  • When Jack becomes angry with the pharmacist, she is seen holding the phone up to her left ear. However, when Jack is seen storming away, she is seen in the background with the phone up to her right ear.
  • When Jack approaches the coffin at the viewing, the head of the casket is to his left, but in the cut to the overhead shot the head is to his right.


The complete musical score for this episode is available on the second disc of the Season 3 soundtrack. This includes 28 tracks. Particularly notable are nine different variations of the second traveling theme. Jack's second motif and Locke's mystery theme get their first full album statements.

The episode also introduces a few new themes. Jack's destiny motif plays early in the episode in the opening track "Flying High". The final track, "Flash Forward Flashback", introduces a theme for Jack and Kate, and Ben gets a new action motif, which appears on the season 4 soundtrack as "Benundrum".


Recurring themes[]

  • Locke and Jack contemplate suicide, but change their minds. Mikhail uses a grenade as a suicide bomb to kill Charlie. Charlie allowed himself to drown. Sawyer, Juliet, and Hurley embarked on an apparent suicide mission to save the three at the camp. Ben claims that Jack's use of the phone to call for a rescue will kill everyone. (Death) (Suicide)
  • The logo for the Looking Glass shows an analog clock reading 8:15 - or 3:40, as the two hands appear to be the same length. (The Numbers)
  • Charlie is tied to a chair by Greta and Bonnie. (Imprisonment)
  • Mikhail's eye is missing as he removes his eye patch for the first time onscreen. (Missing body parts)  (Eyes)
  • Charlie calls Mikhail 'Cyclops'. (Nicknames)
  • Charlie sacrifices himself so that everyone else could be saved. (Sacrifice)
    • Charlie accepts that his death is inevitable in order to save the other survivors, and dies willingly to fulfill Desmond's prediction rather than attempting to beat death another time. (Fate versus free will)
    • Being a musician, Charlie is probably the only survivor who could have figured out the code and how to play it in the time he had. (Fate versus free will)
  • Locke is shown to be alive after a closeup of his opened eye. (Eyes)
  • Richard Alpert and Mikhail are playing a game of chess after Bonnie breaks radio silence. The computer at Mikhail's station required winning a game of chess to access its programs. (Games)
  • With his original motivation in life (finding the original Sawyer who destroyed his family) now over, Sawyer stops being his old self and stops using nicknames for people. He calls Kate and Hurley by their real names. (Nicknames)  (Rebirth)
  • Ben tries to convince Jack that Naomi is "one of the bad guys". (Good and bad people)
  • Jack tells Ben sarcastically, "You're the good guys." (Good and bad people)
  • Jack swears to come after Tom and kill him when he thinks Sayid, Jin and Bernard have been killed. (Revenge)
  • Sawyer shoots and kills Tom for "taking the kid off the raft." (Revenge)
  • A car crash stops Jack from killing himself. (Car accidents)  (Fate versus free will)
  • Jack saves a 42 year-old woman and her 8 year-old from the car crash. (The Numbers)
  • Dr. Hamill mentions that the surgery on the woman from the car accident would be performed by a Dr. Gary Nadler. Nadler is Bernard's surname. (Character connections)
  • After saving the driver and her child, Jack is called a 'hero' by several people. (Good and bad people)
  • The name of the funeral parlor Jack goes to, "Hoffs/Drawlar," is an anagram for "flash forward". (Anagrams)
  • In the flash-forward, Jack is living alone, depressed and isolated. (Isolation)
  • Jack's ex-wife, Sarah, is pregnant. (Pregnancies)
  • Jack had 8 stitches in his forehead. (The Numbers)
  • There are 16 numbers on the numerical keypad in the Looking Glass. (The Numbers)
  • Jack calls the freighter, apparently saving everyone. In the future, Jack and Kate live off the Island after being rescued. (Salvation)
  • Ben fools Jack into thinking Sayid, Jin and Bernard are killed. (Deceptions and cons)
  • Juliet decides to join Sawyer in returning to the beach because of "karma." (Redemption)
  • Jack says that if his dead father is "drunker than him", Dr. Hamill can fire him. (Parent issues)

Cultural references[]

  • Through the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There: The episode title and the station name are a reference to this classic Lewis Carroll children's novel. (Literary works)
  • "Good Vibrations": The code to the keypad is the main melody of this popular Beach Boys song, as typed by Charlie. (Music)
  • "Scentless Apprentice": Jack is listening to this Nirvana song on the way to the funeral home. Nirvana singer/songwriter Kurt Cobain committed suicide on April 5th, the date Jack's newspaper was published. (Further seasons revise the date of Locke's death to later in the year.) (Music)
  • Rambo: Rose makes Bernard repeat he is a dentist, not Rambo. This is reference to the popular saga of action films starring Sylvester Stallone. (Movies)
  • Moses: Naomi calls Jack "Moses", after the early Biblical Hebrew religious leader, lawgiver, prophet, military leader and historian. (Religion and ideologies)
  • Sign of the Cross: Charlie crosses himself as he dies, but he does the sign of the cross with his left hand, which makes it appear to be backwards, as though seen "through the looking glass". Additionally, as Charlie dies, light pours through the port hole creating a halo effect around Charlie’s head; the image resembles classic depictions of Christian saints. (Religion)
  • St. Sebastian: The name of the hospital where Jack works is St. Sebastian's. Saint Sebastian is the patron saint of the plague, and is often depicted in art as being tied to a tree (like Ben in this episode) and being shot with arrows. (Religion)
  • Cyclops: Charlie calls Mikhail Bakunin a Cyclops, after the one-eyed giants of Greek mythology. (History)
  • Valhalla Rising: A copy of this 2001 book by Clive Cussler is seen on Ben’s bookshelf. This book is also seen on Jack's book shelf in his office. (Literary works)
  • Hotel: A copy of this book by Arthur Hailey is also seen on Ben's bookshelf. Though the story offers no obvious parallels to Lost, Hailey's most famous[2] novel Airport concerned an airport and an air disaster. His first published work was the 1956 television drama Flight Into Danger about a crashing plane's passengers and crew. (Literary works)

Literary techniques[]

  • After three seasons of Lost, the audience has come to expect real-time sequences intermixed with flashback sequences. The same format is used for this episode, insinuating that Jack's storyline happened in the past. In the final scene, Jack refers to their stay on the Island in the past tense so the "flashback" was a "flash-forward". (Plot twist)  (Flash-forward)  (Cliffhanger)
  • Jack is doing the same thing in the past as in the future - trying to complete a phone call. The episode ends when both calls are completed. (Symbolism)
  • Jack starts the episode aboard a plane. In the final shot, a plane flies over his head. During both scenes, variations on Jack's theme play. (Framing device)
  • As the title implies, the theme of this episode is 'mirror images' (Through the Looking Glass-Enhanced transcript)  (Juxtaposition)
    • Jack is in great despair. A mirror opposite of Jack, the leader on the Island.
    • Both Locke and Jack contemplate suicide, but change their minds.
  • In the flash-forward, Jack is the hero who saved the family. However, it is revealed that he was the one who caused the accident. (Irony)
  • After finally getting off the Island, Jack says it was a mistake and wants to go back, for unknown reasons. (Irony)
  • Jack "becomes" his father, the drunkard and irresponsible surgeon, and Kate stops wanting to run and gets back home. (Irony)
  • Jack is leading the Losties up to the transmission tower. Climbing mountains is a common symbol among writers for overcoming obstacles. (Symbolism)
    • As if to drive home this point, the music used as the Losties cross the terrain is "Hollywood and Vines", a piece previously used only while on-screen characters are climbing -- literally vertically, i.e. on the trek to find the cockpit or the radio signal in the pilot episode or the Black Rock in Exodus, on the mountain to the Beechcraft or while the Tailies were traversing the hillside on vines.
  • Throughout the season, Charlie never knows how he is going to die, so he must be saved by Desmond, since he can do nothing to prevent it. Yet when he finally does know when and how he will die, he chooses to accept it instead of saving himself. (Irony)
  • Locke's quest for the truth about the Island leads to him falling into a pit and being left for dead. (Archetype)
  • If Ben had taken Richard's offer to retrieve his father's body from the Mesa, Hurley would never have found the van and foiled Ben's plan at the last minute. (Irony)
  • Juliet says that the Others have been building a runway.. (Foreshadowing)
  • The last line of the episode is Jack shouting "we have to go back". This is said a number of times in the show, and at least twice by Kate: once before this ("Stranger in a Strange Land") and once after ("The Last Recruit"). (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Jack says "Who are you?" (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • When Walt appears to Locke, he tells him "you have work to do." (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Mikhail kills Charlie in front of Desmond. Desmond previously prevented Charlie from harming Mikhail and lets Mikhail go free. (Irony)

Storyline analysis[]

Episode connections[]

Episode references[]

Episode allusions[]

  • The opening scene of the episode is reminiscent of Jack's flashback in the pilot episode. He is on a flight drinking a cocktail when turbulence hits. ("Pilot, Part 1")
  • In the flash-forward, we see Jack sitting on the floor of a messy room, in a bad state, talking to Kate on the phone. The mis-en scene is reminiscent of a flashback of Locke calling Helen. ("Walkabout")
  • Minkowski's question "Who are you?" echoes a similar question from each finale. ("Exodus, Part 2")  ("Live Together, Die Alone, Part 2")
  • Hurley uses the DHARMA van he found to help free the hostages. ("Tricia Tanaka Is Dead")
  • Hurley wants to go with Sawyer and Juliet, but is once again turned away. ("Greatest Hits")

Unanswered questions[]

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: Through the Looking Glass/Theories
  • Why and how does Walt appear to Locke and tell him he has work to do?

External links[]

  • Title confirmation: PDF
  • Full press release: [5]