While I haven't re-watched a Lost ep in a long while, I was eager to see this one a second time. Locke's father was so horrible I figured that there had to have been signs of the betrayal coming and I just had missed them, but I was wrong. I watched it again this afternoon and saw nothing out of place in their interactions... which somehow makes it even worse. (And worst yet, I projected my own RL childhood into that: After being crushed for Locke, I mumbled to myself "Yeah, fathers are just like that, they do that all the time." Locke's situation was bad enough on its own, it didn't need my own butting in to make it worse!
I just can't believe all the shit Locke has had happened to him... and he keeps going. Keeps smiling. Keeps helping (in his own sometimes-twisted way).
And the ending of the ep? To me, it was the best one so far. On my first time watching it, I was getting a big "island as god/religion" feeling from it, so the light coming on felt to me like his prayers/faithfulness were finally being answered. On my second watching I got what was probably the intended connection: That the island was more like a father figure, and it finally gave him back what he deserved instead of screwing him over. (Yeah, it was "only" a light going on, but it was more than that -- it was acknowledgment.)
I suppose the question should be: What's inside the hatch? Why did the light go on? But I find that I don't care about those answers. Something is there, and it responded to its faithful follower. Locke hasn't been abandoned, and that's good enough for me.
While there were lots of other good parts in the ep (Hurley's HP comment, the Jack/Sawyer stuff, and (though I doubt it) that Boone may die next week), Locke overshadowed them all. What an amazing man; my heart just goes out to him.
Edited before hitting post: Heh! "Deus Ex Machina" means "god from a machine", right? I said a while back that I thought some sort of Power was inside the hatch, likely that someone locked it in there to keep it away from people. A god-like power? What machines are there on the island? Could it be in the hatch?
And if they kill him off, I shall hunt the writers down and hurt them. Lots. :)