As I see it, I think The Variable is going to be the episode with the heaviest LOST mythology. If Dan has been traveling through time, then his flashback scenes have the potential to take place in 1977, 2007, the 1800s when the Black Rock became "shipwrecked" on the Island, or even the year 108 when the ancient civilization lived there and constructed the statue! Yes, I've taken poetic license to choose that year. But is it not conceivable that we might get our first, if the only ever, flashback to the ancient civilization? An ancient Egyptian civilization that may have been transported through a timewarp/wormhole from Egypt to the Island? (Hell, maybe it was Daniel's time traveling or experiments that created the wormhole and sent the ancient civilization to the Island's location. And the same civilization whose leader is the one Richard Alpert? Perhaps Alpert as a small boy even before he stopped ageing, or at the very least in his current appearance when he was the Others' (ie. Egyptian's) true leader? Perhaps even if it is just a small glimpse of an Egyptian setting. Oh! The possibilities are endless! I'm going nuts! Slap me into submission, someone! I love this show!