02/09/2010 AT 12:00 AM ET
Lost’s final season continues Tuesday with a Kate-centric outing that promises not only to shed more light on the mysteries surrounding the freckled fugitive (Evangeline Lilly) but also the back-with-a-vengeance Claire (Emilie de Ravin).
The two characters’ journeys have long been intertwined, thanks to the child they both love: Aaron. Kate stepped up to raise the son Claire gave birth to on the island after the single mom disappeared – and briefly resurfaced in Jacob’s cabin – during season 4. And judging from last week’s premiere – when a handcuffed Kate hijacked Claire’s cab in a desperate attempt to elude the U.S. Marshall intent on bringing her to justice – not even the new flash-sideways can keep the two women out of each other’s lives.
Expect further evidence of that tonight. “Claire’s not about to stay in a cab with some crazy woman pointing a gun at her,” says de Ravin of her character’s attempted escape. “But something happens where, like it or not, she sort of needs Kate’s help.” Could that something involve Claire’s pregnancy? After all, in this new never-crashed-on-the-island timeline, Claire is still rockin’ a baby bump. “Oh, yes, the lovely bump is back,” says de Ravin, who thought she’d managed to get rid of that particular piece of wardrobe when Claire had Aaron in season 1. “At least this time I don’t have to wear it on the beach in 100-degree weather sweating my ass off.”
Viewers have yet to see how Claire reappears – or in what condition – in the island timeline, though they soon will. De Ravin, for one, is a fan of the hush-hush twist. “There’s definitely been a lot going on with her,” the actress says of Claire. “I’m coming back as sort of a whole new character so that’s really fun for me.”
For de Ravin, who spent her season-five hiatus from the show shooting several films, the development also eases the anxiety she’s long had over the character. “It explains why she left her child under a tree,” de Ravin says. “I was relieved to find out she just wasn’t a terrible mother. She always seemed so sweet.”
And what of Aaron’s surrogate mom, Kate? According to executive producer Carlton Cuse, not even witnessing the seeming rebirth of a dead Sayid at the close of last week’s episode will keep Sawyer and Jack off her mind. “Kate is trying to get her bearings because she’d held out hope in the season 5 finale that this bomb detonation was really going to work,” Cuse says. “But now here she is on the island and the two guys she cares about most are at each other’s throats – and she’s not really sure where she stands with either one of them.” Don’t you just hate when that happens? –Shawna Malcom Robert Pitts/Landov; Kevan Brooks/AdMedia