Scene of the Week 2: Ana Lucia & Goodwin in The Other 48 Days
Ana Lucia Shakes Down Goodwin
ANA LUCIA: "Why do you think they're doing this?"
GOODWIN: "Why do I think who's doing what?"
ANA LUCIA: "Them. Don't you ever wonder why they attack us?"
GOODWIN: "Maybe they're not attacking us."
ANA LUCIA: "Yeah, they just drag us into the jungle every now and then - no real harm done."
GOODWIN: "Good point."
The Other 48 Days was one of the most highly anticipated episodes of season two. The cherry on that sundae was this amazingly tense scene between Ana Lucia and Goodwin, which marked the first time we'd been up close and face-to-face with an Other.
Way back in S2E8, we were clawing our own eyes out to know more about the Others. Finding out about the tail-end survivors was great, but the episode quickly evolved something more important: sniffing out the rat that had infiltrated the tailies group. No one was more qualified for that job than Ana Lucia, and the way she played Goodwin out on that hilltop instantly made this one of the best scenes of season two.
ANA LUCIA: "Why do you think they take some of us and not the others?"
GOODWIN: "That first night they took the strongest of us - our quiet friend - three other guys. They're all athletic, tough, threats."
ANA LUCIA: "They didn't take you."
GOODWIN: "Guess they changed their plan after two of them got killed. Want to take a break?"
By the time Goodwin calls for a break, the jig is already up. Ana is 99% certain that Goodwin is an Other, and he's 100% sure that she knows it. For the next two minutes, the rest of the conversation is just a formality. Ana's motivation is to gather information on exactly what The Others want; she knows she might have to kill Goodwin here, so she needs to get whatever she can out of him before their confrontation gets physical.
Conversely, Goodwin has been trying not to kill Ana Lucia. In later seasons, we'd learn that he was actually "making a case for her" with Ben and his group. Sensing Ana's uneasiness - especially after her interrogation of Nathan - Goodwin was making an attempt to slip away from the tail-enders. But the second Ana 'offered' to go with him, he pretty much knew he was next on her list of suspects.
GOODWIN: "Can I have the knife?"
ANA LUCIA: "Where do you think they got it? I mean, they don't even wear shoes. How'd they get an army knife?"
ANA LUCIA: "The knife - it's US military. Here I'll show you. You see the tang stamp? This knife's probably 20 years old. You don't see these anymore, yet here it is, on this island. Weird, huh?"
The dangerous game played with the US Army knife jacked up the tension in this already suspensful scene. As they passed the weapon back and forth each character was feeling the other out, like two gunslingers waiting for each other to draw. Every person watching LOST knew what was about to happen, but we all prayed that we'd get some answers out of Goodwin before Ana killed him... and it was a pretty safe bet that she would.
The tang stamp on the knife provided another mystery that would be solved many seasons later, when the US military would bring Jughead to the island. We'd see many other WWII references throughout LOST, from M1 Garand rifles all the way back in the Pilot episode where Kate finds the pilot's WWII-issued airman's wings. In fact, the entire flight crew of Oceanic 815 wears these exact wings, including Cindy the flight attendant. Since the US military stopped giving out those wings in the 1950's, the circumstances surrounding that concidence seem strange at best.
ANA LUCIA: "When you ran out of the jungle the day of the crash... how did you find Bernard up in the tree?"
GOODWIN: "I heard him shouting from the beach."
ANA LUCIA: "From the beach? Did he see you out there? Is that why you pretended to be one of us? You ran out of the jungle 10 minutes after the crash, but you weren't wet. You were never even in the ocean."
Ana puts the last piece of the puzzle together here, and Goodwin can no longer deny it. It was easy for Goodwin to fool the rest of the tail-enders, as they were all still reeling from the crash. Ana Lucia's experience as a cop however, was something he didn't count on.
ANA LUCIA: "Nathan. What did you..."
GOODWIN: "If you had cut off his finger and he still told you he was on the plane, I think maybe you would have started to believe you had the wrong guy."
ANA LUCIA: "Did you kill him?"
GOODWIN: "Nathan was not a good person. That's why he wasn't on the list."
This last line by Goodwin was absolutely chilling. Not only does he finally acknowledge being one of The Others, but we also get some insight into why they've been kidnapping and harassing the tail-end survivors. This officially kicks off the "good guys / bad guys" motif, which gets carried on through the rest of the show. At this point we're not sure how The Others know so much about the passengers of Flight 815, but they're not just randomly picking and choosing their victims. They've got a definite agenda, and that's highly important.
ANA LUCIA: "What about the kids? Did you kill them, too?"
GOODWIN: "Children are fine. They're better off now."
Messing with the kids... not a good idea. This is what really pisses Ana off, and leads to Goodwin getting the business end of Ana's stick. His last words though, about the children being better off? They really got everyone thinking.
'Better off' can mean a lot of things. In this case, it looks to mean that the kids are somewhere much better than the tailies grimy campsite. Later on we'd learn they've been taken to The Others' barracks, where they get three square meals a day and a roof over their heads. Hell, they even have a swing set.
Metaphorically speaking however, the kids are better off because they're with "the good guys". The children were young, innocent, and uncorrupted by the every day trials of life. So much of LOST is about judging people - especially when it comes to the smoke monster. As judgment is meted out on the island, the children are perhaps exempt from being considered this way. They're not part of LOST's big equation, so they get yanked from the playing field as early as possible. The same thing happens to Walt, and almost happens to Aaron, too.
Goodwin's hilltop confrontation with Ana Lucia remains one of my favorite scenes in the entire show. The writers took two characters we'd never seen before, and built a whole season's worth of suspense into that one episode. They presented new mysteries, asked new questions, and then resolved the whole situation before the hour was out with a crazy, violent climax.