We find out a good amount about Ben (post-purge). We see his abduction of Alex and quarrel with Widmore that leads to Charles leaving the island. Surprising to see how recently Charles was kicked off the island. Danielle came to the island around ‘88, and Alex looked to be 4-5 years old on the swing (during this scene) so that would make it around ‘92-‘93 when Widmore left the island. We hopefully soon will have a Widmore centric episode to learn more about his rise to power with the Hostiles and getting knocked off by Ben. Widmore will probably only get more and more important as the series winds down. Seeing Penny still alive was nice. I think this is one of the first times this seasons that the obvious answer (Aaron going to Ms. Littleton and Eloise Hawking being Faraday’s mom) was not true. Does Ben have a soft spot for the innocence of a child? He didn’t kill Danielle, because of Alex and it seemed that he paused when little Charlie appeared, giving Desmond enough time to beat him up? Ben obviously was not happy with the way he was raised, and was always upset that he didn’t have a mother, so it seems like he does not want any of these children to grow up motherless. Is the scene at the dock over? Do Desmond and family just quickly sail off? That should be interesting. The ending with Ilana and crew was interesting. Were they hired by Widmore? Possibly they were all separately hired and that riddle about the statue was their way of finding out who is on their side? If this is true, why wait until now? Why not kill Ben right away? It also seems that the sickness that Danielle’s crew got by going under the temple could have also been contracted by them also. Were they talking for the island?
Is Locke actually the Smoke Monster?
Locke is actually dead, but the smoke monsters’ biggest trait is its ability to change into the form of people who are dead on the island. Could the "Locke" we saw all episode really been the smoke monster. The same question can be asked of the Christian we have always seen. Both Locke and Christian came to the island in a coffin, and were dead when they got on their respective flights. Locke did know exactly where the temple was and the “home” of the smoke monster and has never been there before. The episode was titled, “Dead is dead,” meaning Locke is dead. The Locke we saw is just the monster in Locke form. Notice that you never saw the monster as Alex and Locke in the same place. A few more incidents to help prove this theory: The smoke monster appeared as Yemi, Eko’s brother, before killing Eko. When Richard visited Locke when he was 5, Richard noticed Locke’s drawing of the monster attacking a person (thanks Lostpedia).