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''Lost'': A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Bend

By RD Heldenfels Published: November 30, 2005

How many times can ''Lost'' throw us in a single episode? A lot, apparently.

Kate's home exploding was an impressive opening, although the story behind it -- her killing her stepfather, who was actually her biological father -- didn't prove as impressive as the promos implied. We've pretty well known that, whatever her criminal past, she was a wounded bird; we just know more now about the depth of the wound.

But the missing filmstrip -- and Eko's having it -- had a thrill that made it feel like the discovery of the Maltese Falcon.

Although, as readers of Dashiell Hammett (or watchers of old movies) know, the Falcon proved to be less than expected. Perhaps the filmstrip is, too. Perhaps the quest on ''Lost,'' like that for the Falcon, will be an unending journey; in ''Falcon,'' Gutman and his colleagues start off for Constantinople but never manage to get there.

On a night like this, ''Lost'' looks as if it could keep us traveling as long as it wants to lead. Because, of course, after the filmstrip came the computer message to Michael, which may be from Walt. And what is Walt doing sending messages, and has he compromised Dharma by doing so? And I'm trying not to overthink the Guardian Horse.

So much fun. On to Constantinople, with bells on.

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