Lost This show has plenty of surprises, but the revelation that Shannon and Boone aren't related by blood was not one of them. What did surprise me was seeing Shannon become dino food and lying dead in her lover's — er, I mean brother's — arms. I'll admit it, I was duped. Hell, I figured

J.J. Abrams had more characters than he knew what to do with, and it was time to start killing them off. But no, it was all just a dream, hallucination, fantasy, what have you. Which begs the question: What is Locke spiking the other survivors' drinking water with? Or is it something about that little patch of bamboo that everyone hides in when they're being chased by the polar bears, dinosaurs, French ladies, invisible whisperers and Tom Cruise's creepy cousin? Maybe it's not bamboo but really some kind of super-peyote that unleashes your secret fears and fantasies — I half expect Ricardo Montalban to come walking out of the bamboo patch sporting that sly smile and an all-white tux. But seriously, Locke is the Mr. Roarke of this fantasy island, not to mention the most captivating bald guy on network TV since David Carradine walked the earth waxing poetic on Kung Fu.

Oh, by the way, J.J., if you're reading this, my son was intrigued by a certain scene from last night's episode and wants to know if it's true that peeing on a puncture wound will neutralize any toxins present.

Philip Morris PSA
I just love when tobacco giants like Philip Morris talk about all of the wonderful things they're doing to protect children from the dangers of tobacco — educating store-owners and clerks, strategically positioning products behind the counter, and posting information for youngsters about the harmful affects of tobacco. You see, they really care about children because it's important that children grow up healthy — at least until they turn 18, that magical age when tobacco is no longer evil and they'll be able to smoke, chew and spit to their heart's content because it's "legal." Good to know corporate America is looking out for my kids.

Alias
Is Sydney's dad a total killjoy or what? He crashes Weiss' birthday party to try to convince Sydney not to spill the beans about how he murdered Nadia's mother. They couldn't have that conversation over the phone so that Sydney could have a moment of peace? I mean, look at the stress in this girl's life! She's robbing banks, crashing cars, flirting with homicidal psychopaths and finally she has a chance to relax and be herself, no wigs, no accents, just chillin'... But, no, her dad shows up and starts talking how he killed her mom, and he doesn't want her sister to find out. Jack needs to relax. Oh, by the way, if you liked that song playing in the background, it's called "You All Everybody" by Driveshaft. Yeah, too bad about their lead singer disappearing on that flight from Australia last fall. What a loss.

Gotta hand it to Jack for tying up loose ends. Faced with the prospect of being taken out by Nadia, he saves his own skin by setting her up to take down the aforementioned psychopath just as Sydney's about to get it. And talk about timing, whew! The best part of Jack's plan is that Nadia actually thinks she just killed the man who killed her mother, in the process of saving her sister. Not bad. Everybody goes home happy, right? Everyone except Syd, who doesn't like her father's deceptive ways. Funny, since she spends most of her waking hours pretending to be someone else in the name of national security, but she can't do the same thing to save her dear old dad's neck? One minor complaint about Sydney and Weiss' escape from the bad guy's clutches: The fake heart-attack thing was kinda weak. You gotta set these things up better, like they did two nights ago on 24 when the Secretary of Defense and his daughter faked a heart attack to get the jump on their captor. You gotta drop hints about your heart condition and the medication you left on your nightstand, and then you have to get really worked up about something. You can't just start groaning and saying, "Oh, my heart, my heart!" I mean, c'mon: Just 'cause they're bad guys doesn't mean they're stupid.

Nanny 911
Just flipping during commercials, and I come across a 4-year-old on Fox, sitting on a toilet telling the frumpy English lady hovering over her that she "wants to do the pee-pee dance." A moment later she informs us that the effort wasn't exactly successful. Gee, I wonder why not? Couldn't have anything to do with the funny-talking lady in her bathroom, or the cameraman and the guy with the boom mike peeking in from the hallway? C'mon, guys, even the producers of Big Brother know that toilet time is sacred in the world of reality TV. Pee-pee is a private thing... unless somebody steps on a sea urchin — but that's a different matter altogether.

60 Minutes Wednesday
According to Dr. James Shortt, a self-described "longevity physician," hydrogen peroxide injected intravenously can cure everything from the common cold to AIDS — that is, if it doesn't kill you first, like it did two of his unfortunate victims — er, I mean patients. In his own defense, the not-so-good doctor pleads with Anderson Cooper, "If I am such a clear and present danger, I should be in jail now." Be careful what you wish for, Doc. Then there's Thomas Quasthoff, an amazing opera singer who has overcome tremendous odds as well as the disfiguring effects of the thalidomide his mother took to prevent morning sickness while he was in utero. While the obvious lesson from his story is that resolve can overcome adversity, I can't help connecting his story to Dr. Shortt's as a cautionary tale: Be careful what you put into your body.

The West Wing
OK, at the risk of revealing too much about my personal politics, can I just say what I wouldn't give to have a flesh-and-blood politician like Jimmy Smits' Congressman Santos as a candidate in '08? He's a wild-card political renegade with conviction, passion and bold ideas, and he doesn't follow the rules of beltway politics. Not totally unlike Howard Dean, except better-looking and with normal blood pressure.

So far he refuses to do anything that Josh advises him to do, and I say "Go, Santos! Call it like it is!" But you know he's going to have to compromise his ideals for a bit of Josh's &#252berpragmatism if he hopes to stand a chance. I mean you can't expect to be the leader of the free world if you're not willing to compromise, for crying out loud! Ooops, guess I better quit while I'm ahead.

Today's column was written by Daniel Roberts. Damian Holbrook will return on Sunday for The Golden Globes.