My post about the latest episode of Lost is up at Smartpop(Total Spoilers). Here is a sample -- click it for more.
One of the things Lost has been about from the beginning is bad parents, especially for “Candidates” (did everyone notice the sign in front of the piano audition said “All Candidates Welcome”): Jack and Claire and their dad, Kate and her mom and dad, Locke and his dad, Sawyer and his parents, Sun and her dad, Walt and his parents, Hurley and his dad, Ben and his dad (and surrogate father figure Jacob), Daniel and his parents (Mrs Hawking and Widmore), Desmond and his would be father in law Widmore, Miles and his dad Chang, Claire as a bad mom, Kate as a bad adoptive mom (with Jack as adoptive dad). Just as the alternate universe gave us a chance to see a place where John Locke could be happy, we also get a world where Jack can break the cycle started by his dad, and be a good dad for his son.
One more thought that I had after the show ended: in the season opener, I felt like Dogen hit so many cliched "Asian" stereotypes: he knows martial arts, and does bonsai, and hates English, and so on. I am not sure how much weight I want to put on it; Lost is after all a genre mixing show, and these are things movie Samurai do. But it is maybe interesting that in the alternate universe Dogen rejects the stereotype Asian dad role -- he says to Jack the child musicians are under too much pressure, when the cliche teaches us to expect him to pour the pressure on. It would not be significant, except for the fact that it is another, minor way, that the alternate universe gives us good dads where the main U has bad ones.