Crumbs: Reviews » Dramas » Lost » Season 2 » Dave
Critical reviews of U.S. TV shows
and analysis of what makes them
good, bad, irritating and enlightening.


Lost is a drama about a group of plane crash survivors. They land on an unknown Pacific island and have to learn to live together. ABC 2004-2010


Episode 18 - Dave

25 April 2017

Present: Libby encourages Hurley to destroy his stash of Dharma food. Then they discover the new Dharma drop of food. Hurley begins seeing Dave, who he knows doesn’t exist. Dave explains that Hurley is still in the mental hospital and is imagining all of this. He says the only way to wake up is to kill himself. Libby manages to convince him otherwise. Sayid catches Henry in more lies and threatens to kill him if he won’t answer his questions. Henry seems more afraid of what “he” will do to him if he tells. He also comments to Locke that God can’t see this island. Finally he tells Locke that he didn’t input the numbers and that the button is useless.

Flashback: Hurley is in the Santa Rosa Mental Health Institute. His only friend is Dave who doesn’t want him to change or lose weight. We learn that his mother sent him there after he killed two people and went into a catatonic state. He had walked out onto an unstable deck and it had collapses, killing two people. Hurley’s doctor shows him that Dave is a figment of his imagination and it allows Hurley to make a breakthrough. We also see Libby was also a patient there.

The Good: We get a tremendous bit of characterisation in this episode. All too often this season the writers have serviced the island mysteries while ignoring the regular characters and their back stories. But this week we learn all about Hurley, why he was in a psychiatric unit and the source of his desperation not to be seen as crazy.

The first brave decision by the writers is to address Hurley’s weight. It would be foolish to ignore his huge size and the question of why he didn’t lose weight before the Dharma food arrived. They go all the way with that story, showing Hurley at his lowest as he eats peanut butter off a leaf. It becomes clear that food is both Hurley’s comfort food and a way of punishing himself. He feels so guilty over killing people that he feels he deserves to be fat and unattractive. The scene where Dr Brooks explains this to Hurley is quite moving as you finally realise what makes him tick.

The revelation that Dave isn’t real is well handled too. The opening scene with Dave’s shoe apparently being real is a particularly clever idea because it seems to remove the obvious (he is a hallucination) from the equation. Then the writers excel themselves at pointing out all the evidence which could convince Hurley that the island isn’t real. It seems the producers are debunking a fan theory that the whole show was just in Hurley’s head.

It all points to the island once more testing someone. There is an obvious irony in Hurley destroying his stash only to walk into a Dharma drop with even more food. Soppier fans will enjoy Libby helping him realise that the world is real and that if he wants to change then he has to take responsibility. Libby’s appearance in the mental institution is quite a surprise. It’s certainly intriguing but it is difficult to guess where that story is going because we don’t know much about her.

Hurley beating up Sawyer is fun.

Sayid shows more good logic in catching “Henry” in more lies. And then Henry begins to paint a vivid picture of life in the Others world. His seemingly genuine terror at what “he” would do to him if he talks is a great idea. It feeds the viewers imaginations when Henry seems more afraid of this person than he is of Sayid holding a gun to his face. Even better is his line to Locke about God (see Best Moment). It’s difficult to believe Henry about not pressing the button, but he certainly adds to the doubts Locke is now feeling. Locke of course has every reason to doubt the hatch now. Not only have his legs been temporarily taken away but Henry has now betrayed him, just as Michael, Charlie and Sawyer all did. It would seem Locke is no judge of character and his faith in people is constantly abused. It all keeps the hatch story nicely simmering.

The Bad: Sayid actually shooting at Henry is counter productive. It makes Sayid look like an idiot and as bad as Charlie did for shooting Ethan (115). They need Henry alive or else they will never get Walt back or learn more about the island. Yes, Sayid is looking for revenge but he should know better than this.

Couldn’t Hurley have given the food away? Destroying valuable food seems a bit selfish. Hurley’s story is of course a bit predictable as you know there is no chance that the show is all in his head.

The Unknown: Why was Libby in Santa Rosa? Did she know Hurley back then? Is there something sinister going on there? Who is the “he” that Henry is referring to? Is he the same “he” who Zeke referred to (215)?

Best Moment: Locke comes to see Henry. He is angry and wants some answers. At one point he uses the phrase “God knows how long…” and Henry cuts him off by saying “God doesn’t know.” He adds “God doesn’t know how long we’ve been here John. He can’t see this island any better than the rest of the world can.” That statement is beautiful. It could be taken in many ways.

A literal interpretation would imply that the island is impossible to get to or get away from. But it also conjures up an image of the Others as living in some kind of brutal, immoral, cult or fascist system where terror is used to bring people like Henry to obedience. If understood in that Godless way then it reminds you of what made the Others so terrifying earlier in the season (207).

The Bottom Line: A good episode throughout. Hurley’s story is very good and adds layers of depth to his character. Meanwhile the intrigue surrounding Henry and the hatch continues to grow.



Add your comments on this episode below. They may be included in the weekly podcasts.

Post your comment


  • This was the best character episode of the season, but it didn't deliver nearly as much on the other fronts.

    "Henry" says some very interesting things in this episode and on rewatch it is clear that he is lying his way through everything still, which I did not expect the first time through the show.

    Libby in the mental hospital was introduced as a big deal and was never followed up on, which is really disappointing. It continued this season's trend of moments that were shown as a big deal but were never followed up on properly.

    Viewer score: 70 / 100

    Posted by Aaronic, 25/04/2017 1:57pm (3 years ago)

RSS feed for comments on this page | RSS feed for all comments