Desmond-centric episodes are always great.
Now, I will say that “Catch-22” is not quite up to the other Desmond flashback episodes, but it is still a fine and engaging hour that keeps you guessing the whole way.
Desmond has had another of his psychic future seeing flashes of Charlie’s death, something Desmond has prevented three times so far. However, this time is different because Desmond sees an ending to this vision that he desperately wants. A woman arriving on the Island whom he believes is Penny.
The problem is if they change any of the pieces prior to the arrival, everything could be changed. Does Desmond have to let Charlie die this time?
Desmond is pretty insistent that everything follows exactly as he saw it and that meant recruiting Hurley, Jin and Charlie to go with him. But Desmond could not tell them about it because if they knew it ended with Charlie’s demise, they never would have gone for it.
The episode is great as these four actors moved across the Island, with wonderful dialogue and clever writing to slowly follow through with Desmond’s vision and the viewer has to wonder the entire time if Desmond was going to let it happen. Finally, it was happening and Desmond could not let Charlie die. It was a great moment of potential sacrifice by the Scotsman to save one of their own.
The woman who fell from the sky, from a helicopter that crashed in the water, turned out to not be Penny, but another woman who knows Desmond and has a photo of him and Penny in a Portuguese version of the novel Catch-22.
Desmond’s flashback was seemingly fluff, but then it turned into a perfect example of echoing what was happening on the Island, and it showed us the first ever meeting between Desmond and Penny. These two actors have such an easy charm and unbelievable chemistry that you just see it on the screen. Penny and Desmond are absolutely the couple to root for on LOST.
There was some Jack-Kate-Sawyer stuff too as Kate saw Jack and Juliet together and felt hurt and so she went to Sawyer for some lovin’. I read a review at IGN that stated that this was revenge from Kate but I disagree totally. When Kate saw Jack moving on with Juliet, she was hurt because Jack was always the ideal person for her in Kate’s eyes. He was someone she did not believe she was worthy of. So when it looked like their possibilities were over, Kate returned to Sawyer to lose herself in what he could offer. It was to quench Kate’s pain, not to get revenge on anyone. Just like Kate always does, she was running from the pain.