Friday, February 22, 2013


People have debated what the Island was . . . a real place, a space ship, a parallel dimension or hell.
But the above cartouche explains the island. It alone can unravel the unspoken mystery of the island.

I have translated the symbols around the cartouche.  It depicts the relationship between two entities. It tells The Story of the Island.

Foremost, it shows the Egyptian god of the underworld, Anubis, summoning a monstrous figure which represents another Egyptian entity, Ammit. In Egyptian mythology, this makes perfect sense. Anubis was the god of the underworld, who protected souls on their passage toward the afterlife. Ammit was "the devourer" of souls. Ammit was associated with the god, Tawaret, the statue for which Jacob lived in on the beach. The Egyptians believed that once a person died, a soul needed to pass through seven gates in order to get to the afterlife. The passage from their tomb to the afterlife was through a duality called Duat which was connected by the Nun, the waters of the primordial abyss. In this place, spirits were not evil but under the control of the gods. The Duat served as the residence of underworld gods like Osiris, Anubis, Thoth, Horace, Hathor and Ma'at. The souls would pass through the Duat which was a place were souls were not condemned but tested and judged by the gods. The Book of the Dead set forth "rules" of passage onto the afterlife for a soul to navigate through the gates guarded by human form spirits.

Anubis was a protector or guardian of the souls in their passage toward the afterlife. If a soul at judgment did not pass the weighing of the heart test, then that soul would be devoured by Ammit, which meant that the soul would never pass on to the afterlife (it would "die a second time") and the condemned soul would remain restless forever (i.e., the whispers).

Second, the stone carving specifically shows the summoning of Ammit. Ammit arises from black smoke to form an "electric" looking demon. When we have seen the smoke monster, it contained electrical flashes as being some sort of electro-magnetic beast. Ammit was under the control of Anubis. So this means that the smoke monster was not an indiscriminate killer.

Third, the translation of the hieroglyphs may be subject to some interpretation. But in the overall scheme of the stone's large representations, I believe the symbols mean, from left to right:


RISE TO SEE EVIL (the message under the figures)


Fourth, the message seems clear. Once Anubis, the guardian of souls has final judgment, he summons Ammit to rise to find the evil soul and devour it.

So why is this stone relief so important in the LOST story.  As referenced themes of Alice in Wonderland and the Wizard of Oz state, there is a man behind the story engine curtain. The reveal of the LOST man behind the curtain is extrapolated from the church scene in The End: a clear reference that all the characters are dead, waiting for the final journey into the afterlife. This sideways way station is symbolic of reaching heaven's gate or the final passage way in Egyptian mythology.

In the Egyptian passage to the afterlife, a soul would encounter tests, spells, magic, fear and danger just like all the characters did on the island. The island was a modernized representation of the ancient Egyptian underworld.

It would then appear that Crazy Mother was the representation of Tawaret. Before Claudia's ship came to the island, other earlier people constructed a statue to worship Tawaret. But for some reason, Crazy Mother stopped guarding them - - - and allowed the smoke monster to kill them off.  This would be consistent with the Roman villagers being killed in a smokey like attack after Crazy Mother argued with MIB.

From that point on, Jacob assumed the role of Anubis. MIB's soul, which was "evil" by killing Crazy Mother, was devoured by the smoke monster, who retained MIB's thoughts, memories and desires. But being Ammit, it remained under the control of Jacob, the guardian of the island.

As the ancient Egyptian religious cults declined, one could say that the gods lost their power relative to loss of their worshippers. Gods, especially those in the underworld, may have become despondent, tired and less important. These gods may have become as trapped in the abyss as the devoured souls. These gods may have sought their own passage to the afterlife.

But it just as likely that once Jack "dies" in the bamboo forest next to Vincent, that the island would continue to reboot the Egyptian underworld rites since we really do not know for sure whether the immortal Jacob is really dead and gone, or whether the smoke monster's existence was terminated in the human representation of John Locke. But based upon the lies and manipulations of Jacob and Flocke, it is more likely than not that there "demise" was nothing more than a fiction to propel Jack to assume his leadership role in his final "test" before being judged as a soul who can move on in the afterlife.

So, in my view, the Island dynamic is a modern representation of ancient Egyptian death mythology. As such, it would explain most, if not all, of the story arcs, magical elements, science fiction and fantasy elements of the LOST story.

Thursday, February 21, 2013


In an attempt to flow chart the complex relationships to formulate a set of rules, the above graphic is a representation of the white, black and gray character elements. Crazy Mother is both good and bad (gray). She brought the island visitors much like Jacob did, but her purpose is clouded but may be the same as Jacobs; she was tired of being the guardian.  The red lines show the pattern of killing done by the god-like immortals. For all the "rules," it is apparent that Crazy Mother could kill directly (Claudia and the other island villagers). MIB directly killed Crazy Mother (it is debatable whether there was some rule broken in MIB's rage). Jacob then killed MIB by throwing his body into the light cave (whether one calls it direct or indirect the result is the same).  But in the next centuries, it is apparent that MIB continued to kill visitors as the smoke monster. However, one slight change occurred that altered the cycle of killing: it appears that island followers and candidates killed off each other at times. But in the final cycle, a "candidate" killed both Jacob (Linus) and MIB (Kate). Had that ever happened before?

Was the key to MIB's loophole the fact that if he got a candidate to "kill" Jacob, he would regain his humanity (mortality)? And was Jacob's ultimate demise conditioned upon a candidate killing MIB? It would seem so. Crazy Mom's demise was at the hands of one of her "candidates" to replace her.

So what is the significance of both Jacob and MIB being killed by candidates on the island? One could consider that just like the stone cork in the light cave, Jacob and MIB were the symbolic cork that closed the nexus or portal to the character's sideways world.

It would seem to be a simpleton "eye for an eye" loophole. But it had to be difficult to organize and pull off. For Jacob kept himself secreted in the statue or the mystery cabin. He had intermediaries who would keep "candidates" at bay until MIB manipulated them to "follow" him. And once chaos reigned in the island hierarchy, Jacob had to make himself seen among the followers. That left him open to attack.

For what is the portal to our original 815 characters. For those in "everybody was dead" camp, an explanation. Jack's eye was closed at the beginning of the series. What does not truly mean? Why did he land far away from his plane section (Rose was right next to him)? If we look internally for symmetry, when Jack closed his eye in the finale it meant that the was dead. The loop had come back around. If a closed eye represents death, then Jack was dead in the crash. If an eye opening represents "awakening" or "rebirth" then Jack's eye opening in the pilot meant that part of him was reborn on the island (his body) while his soul went on to help create the sideways world. The sideways world had to have been created when everyone was together - - - possibly during the electromagnetic blast that took down the plane. It would explain why there are parallels between the two places. But there was a barrier between the reincarnated on the island and the souls in the sideways plane of existence. That barrier was the island and its guardian, who had the power to manipulate time and space, in order to release himself from the eternal prison of the island.

In one respect, the island also served as a prison for the 815 characters. Part of them were trapped in the island drama for no apparent reason except to free Jacob and MIB from their servitude to some unknown higher deity. Perhaps, with Jacob and MIB's island deaths, they would be awakened in their own parallel sideways world that their real mother created for them.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013


If The End had a major flaw, it would have to center upon the awakening of Kate and Claire at the concert. Many in the Lost community called it "The Aaron Problem."

Now, many posters felt that children were treated on the whole badly throughout the Lost series. For example, plane survivors Emma and Zach were kidnapped by the Others and had no resolution of their plight at the end of the series. The whole story arc with Walt being "special" but having no consequence in the show's conclusion has left many viewers with a bad taste.

So, yes, everyone is in agreement that everyone in the church in The End are dead. Dead dead.

But what about Aaron?

The pro-enders believe that the "re-birth" of Aaron in the sideways world was necessary for Claire "to remember" her island life and her bond with now Egyptian eyeliner Charlie Pace. Except, Aaron was already "born" on the island. It makes no sense to have Aaron born in the dead realm to Claire unless:

a) Aaron, like the other children including sideways David (Jack's son) are just mere illusions or props;

b) Aaron was never truly "born" on the island;

c) the sideways world characters are separate entities living in a parallel dimension from that of the island world, meaning that events in one place had no effect on the other; or

d)  it was a major writing error in the finale.

We were told that Aaron was "alive" in Los Angeles, raised by Kate for three years. Then when Kate returned to the island, Aaron was given to his grandmother. So based upon that information, Aaron is no different than anyone else in the church - - - he was already born, living and breathing in the island world. We do not know when he "died" in the island world - - - whether he lived a brief, or a long life; with his own family, friends, children, grandchildren, etc.

But the sideways world pre-supposes the opposite. For if Christian's statement was true, these people were the most important people in their collective lives (including Aaron's) during their time on the island, which lasted initially about 100 days, then time split for three years, to re-converge for approximately 12 days after Ajira 316 landed on the Hydra Island. The 12 days also seems to coincide with the time line for the sideways events. Christian tied both worlds together so there is no evidence of parallel universes. There is no evidence that the sideways world was an "alternative" place in time or space, but merely a holding fantasy, for souls to remember and re-connect to people that allegedly meant the most to them in their previous existence.

In order to reconcile the condition of the island characters to their sideways doppelgangers, in order to be truly consistent and logical, if he truly lived a "real" life,  Aaron should have arrived at the church either as a three year old boy or an old man when his life ended in the non-sideways world. Everyone else in the church had their same island time line appearances.

Many people do not want to hear this explanation: that Aaron was "reincarnated" in the sideways world. If he was reincarnated as a new born in the sideways world, it means he had a horrible, non-existent "real world" life.

But most believe Aaron did have a life before dying. So how can he be in "two" places at once. (The Christian explanation of the sideways world having no time does not hold water if one believes that a person only has one soul, whether it be living or dead.) So if Aaron went through adulthood, his reward for living was becoming a new born infant in purgatory? Again, that makes no sense. And further, why would Aaron return to his mother as an infant, if she returned to him as a crazy person when Ajira left the island? It would seem Aaron's expected life would be just like poor John Locke's.

Then again, one could argue that this part of the sideways fantasy world was Claire's dream to be with Aaron always so she made him return as a fetus - - - but why, if she did leave the island and was reunited with her three year old son and her mother?

And if Aaron was reincarnated at the sideways concert, what about the rest of the characters? They were somehow also reincarnated into the sideways world.  And if the characters were reincarnated in one place (sideways), then it is just as logical that they could have been reincarnated in the other place (the island). Many fans abhor the idea that the characters were somehow "dead" from the beginning of the pilot episode and throughout the series. But why then, are those fans content with the same reasoning fashioned in the sideways world finale?

How Aaron was depicted in the series is a real series paradox.

Was he just a literary prop to add some tangent drama to a secondary character's story as part of a four season filler arc?

From the after life theorists, for Aaron to be "reborn" in the sideways finale, he would have had to have been killed on or before Flight 815 crashed on the island. One life; one soul.

How Aaron was used in the finale is one of massive contradiction. It raised more questions about the disregard of the first five season plot lines in favor of a final half season white wash sideways explanation to the conclude the characters lives. But Aaron's birth to his dead mother has no explanation in either the island or sideways time frames. It is really one of those plot points that still gnaws some viewers. Claire could have "awakened" in another fashion than using Aaron as a prop doll.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


There are two positions in regard to the end of LOST.

The pro-ending viewers said that the way the series ended was in a satisfactory conclusion where their favorite characters finally found resolution from their troubled lives. However, the majority of the pro-enders believe that though the characters were dead in sideways world, the characters were "alive" and survived the plane crash on the island.

The anti-ending viewers thought the series ended in an unsatisfying way for numerous reasons. First, many thought that the sideways church ending was a cop-out for not explaining the long, twisted science fiction mystery story lines of the island. Second, a minority of the anti-enders thought it was totally inconsistent (to the point of irrational) to believe that the sideways world could have been "created" by the characters at any point in time. Third, many thought the concept that the characters created their own sideways world - - - but failed to "remember" their island pasts as being a red herring. How could one create a fantasy sideways world (and actually participate and live in it) but not remember it?

Both sides of the question focus in on the pivotal conversation in the waning moments of the final episode: when Jack speaks to his father, Christian:

JACK: You...are you real?
CHRISTIAN: I should hope so. Yeah, I'm real. You're real, everything that's ever happened to you is real. All those people in the church...they're real too.
JACK: They're all...they're all dead?
CHRISTIAN: Everyone dies sometime, kiddo. Some of them before you, some...long after you.
JACK: But why are they all here now?
CHRISTIAN: Well there is no "now" here.
JACK: Where are we, dad?
CHRISTIAN: This is the place that you...that you all made together, so that you could find one another. The most...important part of your life, was the time that you spent with these people. That's why all of you are here. Nobody does it alone Jack. You needed all of them, and they needed you.
JACK: For what?
CHRISTIAN: To remember...and to...let go.
JACK: Kate...she said we were leaving.
CHRISTIAN: Not leaving, no. Moving on.
JACK: Where we going?
CHRISTIAN: [smiling] Let's go find out.

So what is "real?"

First, let us look to the definition of the word.

1. actually existing as a thing or occurring in fact; not imagined or supposed;

2. (of a substance or thing) not imitation or artificial,  genuine;

3. [ attrib. ] informal complete; utter (used for emphasis);

4. [ attrib. ] adjusted for changes in the value of money;

5. Law of fixed property (i.e., land and buildings), as distinct from personal property;

6. Mathematics (of a number or quantity) having no imaginary part;

7. Optics (of an image) of a kind in which the light that forms it actually passes through it; not virtual.

So what was Christian telling Jack?

"Yeah, I'm real. You're real, everything that's ever happened to you is real. All those people in the church...they're real."

Second, here is a literal translation:

"Yeah, I actually EXIST. You EXIST, everything that's ever happened to you is GENUINE. All those people in the church . . . they EXIST and they are not imagined or supposed."

Next,  Jack asks the question that is supposed to answer the question of what is the sideways world:

"They're all dead?"

The big twist in the finale is that everybody was dead. "Everybody" meaning the key players. Exactly who those players are remains open for debate and remains one of the show's most enduring mysteries. The finale revealed that a gathering of memory-restored Oceanic "survivors" in the sideways world have in fact been running through an elaborate fantasy, one designed to bring their group together before they step over to the afterlife. The major question that remains is when during the run of the show that break between life and death occurred. Life could have ended for the Oceanic passengers as far back as the pilot episode. The plane crashes, everybody dies, but this group is left behind because of unresolved issues within their individual lives. The trials they go through surviving on the island serve as a sort of purgatory. This would render certain key figures — Jacob, the Man in Black, Richard Alpert — as utter fabrications. That's just one theory. Another read could put the time of death for Oceanic 815's survivors as the hydrogen bomb blast at the end of the show's fifth season, which raises a whole new set of questions as to the nature of certain supporting characters. It is now a question of acceptance of this death premise in the mythology of the series.

The word "dead" is defined as follows:

1. no longer alive, as in a dead body;
• (of a part of the body) having lost sensation; numb.
• having or displaying no emotion, sympathy, or sensitivity;
• no longer current, relevant, or important;
• devoid of living things;
• resembling death;
• (of a place or time) characterized by a lack of activity or excitement;

2. [ attrib. ] complete; absolute;
• exactly:
• straight; directly;

Clearly, the sideways world characters were "no longer alive."

But, they were "real." 

And here is where the viewers become split in their perception of the show.

In the pro-ender camp, since we are told that everything was "real" that must mean that everything that happened on the island (including time travel and flashback back stories) was also "real."

However, the anti-ender camp points out that in the context of the sideways church statements, "real" means "dead." They would state that since the sideways world was "real" but "dead," then the island world being also "real" would also be "dead." For if the "dead" characters can create an elaborate fantasy dream purgatory in the sideways world (with marriages, children being born, etc), why can't the "dead" characters also "dream" of a fantasy adventure world called the island?

The pro-end fans would counter to say that Christian explained it.

"This is the place that you...that you all made together, so that you could find one another. The most...important part of your life, was the time that you spent with these people. That's why all of you are here. Nobody does it alone Jack. You needed all of them, and they needed you."

But then again, the anti-enders say finish the passage:

JACK: For what?
CHRISTIAN: To remember . . .

"Life" is defined as:

1.  the condition that distinguishes animals and plants from inorganic matter, including the capacity for growth, reproduction, functional activity, and continual change preceding death;
• living things and their activity;
• [ with adj. or noun modifier ] a particular type or aspect of people's existence;
• vitality, vigor, or energy;

2. the existence of an individual human being or animal;
• a biography;
• either of the two states of a person's existence separated by death (as in Christianity and some other religious traditions);
• any of a number of successive existences in which a soul is held to be reincarnated;
• a chance to live after narrowly escaping death (esp. with reference to the nine lives traditionally attributed to cats);

3. (usu. one's life) the period between the birth and death of a living thing, esp. a human being.

"Remember" is a verb meaning:

1. have in or be able to bring to one's mind an awareness of (someone or something that one has seen, known, or experienced in the past);
• [ with infinitive ] do something that one has undertaken to do or that is necessary or advisable;
• [ with clause ] used to emphasize the importance of what is asserted;
• bear (someone) in mind by making them a gift or making provision for them;
• (remember someone to) convey greetings from one person to (another);
• pray for the success or well-being of; and
• (remember oneself) recover one's manners after a lapse.

2. The word is derived from Latin "to call to mind" or mindful.

The characters represented the most important part of their collective lives, so that is why the created the sideways soul oasis. But "which" life? Some would say their human life. Others would say, based upon the mythology and images shown in the show, "any number of successive existences" including reincarnation. So when Christian says "life" it can be an ambiguous concept, especially in the Lost story.

But Christian tells Jack that he and his friends created the sideways place (where they are dead) in order to "remember" their past "experiences" together. Some will postulate that the sideways world was created AFTER the characters first met, and formed during their island world adventure. That could explain why there were ghosts and visions on the island.

But others would balk at that assertion that the ghosts were sideways world messengers or souls in charge of the construction of the sideways world. Dave, Hurley's vision, was not a part of the sideways story. We were told that Jack's vision of Christian was a smoke monster projection.

Further complicating any reasoned analysis is the statement from Christian that the sideways world contained no "now" or "present" time. It is an undefined magical statement to show how characters who died long before Jack and died long after Jack's death could co-exist together in a complex sideways world - - - for which we saw linear time events occur.

But an open question remains of "when" the characters "actually died."  Pro-enders believe that the characters survived the plane crash, and died when they did on or off the island. There is no room for reincarnation, or a purgatory level to the island so there is no belief that the characters souls manifest in human form such as the spirited smoke monster after dying in the plane crash. But these lost souls may have died at various time prior to the Flight 815 crash; a theorist would argue that the plane crash (like all the previous wrecks on the island) were mere metaphors of souls passing through one level of existence to another.

How can one reconcile the "nothingness" of sideways time and space which showed about a week's worth of linear time events to the "reality" of the island time and space which went on for months (on the island) and years (off-island)? You really cannot unless you make assumptions to fit a unified theory. One could argue that the survivors of plane crash only "lived" as long as the sideways world permitted (one week or so); meaning that the survivors minds raced through the island adventures like REM dreams and nightmares.

To "awaken" memories of a sideways soul means that those memories had to have be repressed; what represses memories? The existence of repressed memories is a controversial topic in psychology; some studies have concluded that it can occur in victims of trauma, while others dispute it. According to some psychologists repressed memories can be recovered through therapy. Other psychologists dispute this arguing that this is in fact rather a process through which memories are created through a blending of actual memories and outside influences. According to the American Psychological Association, it is not currently possible to distinguish a true repressed memory from a false one without corroborating evidence.

Memories can be accurate, but they are not always accurate. For example, eyewitness testimony even of relatively recent dramatic events is notoriously unreliable. Misremembering results from confusion between memories for perceived and imagined events, which may result from overlap between particular features of the stored information comprising memories for perceived and imagined events. Memories of events are always a mix of factual traces of sensory information overlaid with emotions, mingled with interpretation and "filled in" with imaginings. Thus there is always skepticism about how valid a memory is as evidence of factual detail. Some believe that accurate memories of traumatic events are often repressed, but remain in the subconscious mind, from where they can be recovered by appropriate therapy. Others believe that truly traumatic events are never forgotten in this way, although often people may not disclose their memories to others.

So, is the whole story of Lost boil down to a collective repressed memory of a plane crash? Who would "forget" surviving a plane crash? Why would such highly charged, emotional memories be repressed in one's after life?  Is this part of a dynamic that upon death, the conscious mind and the subconscious mind separate and a soul cannot "move on" in the after life without their mind being whole? The show writers did not intend to give a clear answer to any of these questions.

It comes down to a personal interpretation of the meaning of "reality" in the context of the Lost story.

Monday, February 18, 2013


It was a melancholy end to LOST.

Lost in the actual series ending was the huge community "sigh" that the reviews, debates, theories, and spirited discussions for the last six years had come to the end. The discussions were more about the on-line friendships and sparring partnerships than on the actual events depicted in the final episode.


The ending of LOST came down really into two camps: one which liked the final ending in the sideways church as a touching moment for the characters to reunite in a happy place; and one which disliked the ending since it was not based upon six years of monsters, time travel, crazy people, missions, science and a final battle to the death between an island guardian and Smoke Monster.

But even with the undeniable fact that the characters were all dead in the sideways world, the show remained open to vast interpretation.

The ending did not surprise me because I had been in the vocal minority that the characters were dead from the beginning. That said, there is plenty of room to criticize how the story was wrapped up the by the writers. At least the Big Premise was clearly stated in the end: they were all dead.

But many viewers did not like the idea of deceased characters running about in fantasy land for six seasons. Many base that view from TPTB comments from season one adamantly telling the world that the show was not about purgatory or hell. Well, in some respects, those viewers were conned or lied to by TPTB. Another part of the queasy reaction to the series conclusion is that the writers did have an opportunity to wrap a science-sci/fi explanation into the layered after life premise.

I strongly believe that the characters were dead before 815 crashed; so it appears that the crash was the symbolic transportation of lost souls into purgatory setting created by the flashbacks (part truth, part individuals' dreams, part nightmares and fears) constructed by the comic book world mindset of Hurley and the bookish nerdy historian Ben. The island was nothing more than an after life simulation. The answer to all the island questions is "it does not matter." Everything was a illusory prop to get the characters to find their redemption and bonds.

In a mind over matter setting, the island world seemed totally real but it was not; it was like a spiritual maze. Once you realized you were dead, and accept it, and some one else helping your along the journey to the next level, then your soul can be "awakened" in the sideways world (which in itself is another waiting room in the after life for passing the maze) to "move on." One cannot pass on without a strong, pure, emotional bonds and finding your "soul mate" to share eternity.

But many commentators did not buy the "soul mate" idea. Who was Boone's soul mate? And Locke? They were bachelors. They had no one in the church. Why?

And the concept that the sideways world had no past, present or future, just "now" seemed to be a convoluted statement so as NOT to explain the time lines, time skips or whether the passengers on Flight 815 ever "survived" the crash onto the island.

At least one person thought about the characters not present at the church. About MIB, does no one out there feel sorry for this guy? Wasn't he pretty much a victim? Okay, he developed a mean rage that would have seriously challenged Jack Nicholson in Anger Management. But before that, he just wanted off the island. And he was thwarted at every step by Crazy Mom. Killing her, which was somewhat understandable, is what led to Jacob's revenge for which this poor guy became, well, a monster. And, yes, he was a BAD monster, but do we have no sympathy at all for him?

Unanswered is why anyone had to die on the island, if Christian is to believed in the church that everyone there died "long before and long after" Jack died. We assumed that Jack died next to Vincent in the bamboo forest. We assumed Sayid died from the gunshot wounds,  but turned into a zombie ghost from the temple. Many assumed the people survived the plane crash, too. We knew Locke died off island, but he was all better in the sideways world. For if the sideways world was the "real" one, then what was the island world? People no longer wanted to debate that topic or grapple with the implications of the sideways final reveal.

No, the fans who liked the ending decided that the characters were more important than the story lines. That the island life was a path of redemption and sacrifice to create and live on in the sideways after life. In some ways, that simple ending to a extremely layered, tangential and layered plot lines was the only way out of the writer's painted corner. Just like in the community blogs, when the show was over, the give-and-take on-line friendships were also over. It was like the high school graduation; everyone said their goodbyes to move on to the next stage of life.

What everyone thought and obsessed on for the first five and half seasons came to naught.  In the after show commentary, people were not that upset that their personal questions remained unanswered, but the realization was at this point it did not matter. The finale put the final nail in the coffin for every character, literally and figuratively.

The ending was a mirror image of what we thought we saw and felt during the six year run.

What Happened, did not Happen.
Live Alone. Die Together.

And the final lesson learned: LOST's ending was like every Cub season since 1908.


What They Died For was the last episode before the finale. Viewers thought that the title referred to the final season theme of characters meeting their demise in vague quests to stop MIB from leaving the island; getting blown up by dynamite, mortar rockets, Smokey's wrath, etc. The survivors kept asking to make those deaths, those "sacrifices" to have some meaning. But we all thought the title meant recent episode fatalities and not the big picture.

As another recap of what the LOST community was saying after this second to last episode, I culled the comment boards I viewed back at the original airing to get a sense of what fans were thinking:


1. The Island's Protector

The pitch has been that the character driven series would wind up in heroic fashion, but I found no compassion or heroic qualities in the characters last night. The four around Jacob's camp fire reminded me of four kids in the principal's office, and Jack standing up to take the blame for something he does not know about. Who in their right mind would take an island guardian job, with the duty to kill a monster, without any instructions or plan?

If only the protector can find the light, why does it need a protector????????????Guesses included that fact that only the protector can find (and lead the chosen) to the actual light cave. But MIB found a "loophole" and started digging. He was able to find the source of the light underground. MIBs people, Dharma and others have tried to find the light in the exact same way. The failures to actually get to the light by so many is clearly a result of the protector's actions directly or indirectly.

With Jack now the new guardian didn't MIB just run out of options? I mean, he was trying to kill all of the candidates after spending centuries finding a loophole to kill Jacob specifically to keep them from becoming the next guardian. Isn't it completely back to the drawing board for MIB? 

Jacob tells Jack, Kate, Sawyer and Hurley that they're all like him -- "all alone, all looking for something you couldn't find out there" --  loneliness has been a sneaky theme lurking about the entire series. Almost all of the major characters were dreadfully lonely in their pre-island lives, and they're brought to the island by a guy who's been alone for centuries. And as part of this "kidnapping" touch by Jacob, the 815 characters made new friends in their island adventures.

2. The Sideways Story Arc

I never liked the sideways story arc, but I think the writers will use it in this bold fashion: sideways Jack will intentionally screw up Locke's surgery, killing him on the table (just like his father did to a patient) which would then "kill" Flocke on the island world. I have no explanation how or why that would happen, but I think that is the purpose.

While Desmond is my favorite character, his actions in the alt timeline seem like they could be interpreted as a 'failsafe' for the writers, running around and tying up loose ends whatever they may be. Many viewers thought that the sideways story was feeling like the trap door for the show's creators to get out of answering the island mysteries in some alternative, less fulfilling fashion.

A few thought the sideways world was mirroring the island stories too closely. Anyone else notice how Desmond is 'touching' everyone like Jacob did?

A few observed that the sideways arc was getting much too much traction. The episode reviews were so-so I mean by Lost standards. Whether the episode supports the idea that the writers had this planned all along or whether they were making it up as they went was still are tense debate.
There were too many things What They Died For that felt a little contrived. Kate's name being crossed off because she was a mom struck me as backtracking on the writer's part rather than anything planned. The Ben and Rousseau match, while some found it touching, was cheesy to some.

Then in an off-tangent discussion, who was Jack's ex in the sideways world? The "candidates" for that were quite varied.  Someone suggested Juliette. Did we not see sideways Juliette already? I thought we did but can't remember where or who she was connected with. Whoever it is it has to be someone of importance. Who else hasn't put in an appearance? Another remarked that Juliet is"too obvious,"  and she needs to have coffee.  Others suggested Sarah, Cindy, Nikki or even Kate. I even threw out Penny as a weird option. But most of us thought it did not matter.

One poster commented "For some reason the sideways story had the feel of The Usual Suspects movie. The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist."

3. Who Needs to Die?

Many fans posted that they thought that EVERYONE left on the island will killed in the finale, except Cindy, Emma and Zach, who replace CrazyMom, Jacob and MIB.

But the biggest question was left unanswered by Jacob's talk to the remaining candidates. WHAT DID THEY DIE FOR? was never answered. It goes back to the beginning episodes, where we are stumbling around like the plane crash survivors - - - "where are we," and in the sense after this episode continued to be what is the big premise of the show?

4. The Open Questions

Each individual fan has his or her own list of burning, unanswered questions or plot points which were once deemed important clues but now seem gnawing after thoughts in the big picture.

The whole name on the wall thing bothered some. Jacob answered Kate's question as if he was the occupant of the ocean side cave. Why would he need TWO places to write down candidates' names (the cave and the lighthouse)? It makes no sense. In response, a theory would be that  "Jacob" does not really exist. Suppose, when Smokey was created, it immediately killed Jacob. That would leave Smokey totally "alone" on the island. He would have to re-create Jacob (ghost kids) in a schizophrenic way to have conversations, to interact with his lost humanity, to cope with its inherited memories and its loneliness. But that would not explain why people were brought to the island.

Many thought the "concert" was going to be the epicenter of the resolution of the story. Questions were asked about who are going to be present. Not sure how Jin and Sun will get there. Someone mentioned Charlie but isn't sideways Charlie dead? He didn't seem to have any interest in getting out of that car when he tried to kill himself and Des.

Some were bothered by the growing show reel of character death scenes. For example, Richard's end (if it was an end) may have seemed swift and out of left field, but I think it is telling in that he thought he was much more important than he actually was. He was saying how the monster just wanted Richard on his side. So much for that.

Ben did nothing "wrong" in this episode. His cooperation with Flocke seemed to be only a matter of survival. He didn't seem too convincing in his acceptance of Flocke's deal that he could have the island, and he killed Widmore at a very opportune moment, though Flocke claimed he had already heard what he wanted to know,  but Widmore had not finished speaking!

Why would Widmore fear for his daughter's life should MIB leave The Island if he had already stated that the world would end if he ever got off? That's either 'end of series sloppiness' or Widmore knew he was dead either way and was giving MIB a false lead.

One speculation was that  either Claire or Ben might kill Jack in the finale if MIB cannot "kill" the island guardian because of "the rules."

People questioned why now MIB wants to destroy The Island when at first he just wanted to leave it? What happened to just getting off of it? Did that plan change with Jack becoming the next guardian? Will he use Jack's friends against him? I think that's a likely scenario But Jack makes the rules now, why can't he just undo the 'mistake' Jacob made, declare MIB can go free, and remove his smokiness?

Jacob forgot to tell Jack to never go into the cave or what the cave is, other than it being the 'heart' of The Island.
- Given everything The Island has done, maybe it's better to kill it at this point? I mean, what good has it ever really done? Kill it and disperse the light so no one person could ever harness it again and problem solved, no?

A large call for the where are Rose, Bernard and Vincent, who have not seen seen in ages on the island. The greater question hanging in mid-air is what characters will be important in the end resolution and why.

Some fans felt anger and angst about their unanswered keys to the story plots.
"If the writers don't close the loop on the whole "Walt is special" drama from the beginning of the show I am going to be pissed."

Also, once the Oceanic 6 got back to real life, why were Ben and Sayid killing all those people to protect the six? Who was trying to harm them and why? Does this have anything to do with the visit Jacob paid Widmore after the freighter explosion?

Who built that statue that Jacob was living in?

People still thought the Numbers answer needed to be addressed. They never fully explained, the Numbers (4 8 15 16 23 42),  right? like how they where basically EVERYWHERE!! and even over that radio transmission and how they followed Hurley everywhere? "Where the hell did these numbers come from?"

Even if the numbers were candidate markers, why were some "living" candidates still alive but no longer candidates? Something not to many people are aware of but either BEN LINUS or his father Roger LINUS WERE CANDIDATES!!! If you look closely at Jacobs long list of candidates at the lighthouse LINUS is a name on that list and his number is 117! Other names on that list that we are familiar with are:
 20 - Rousseau
 32 - Rutherford (Boone or Shannon)
 51 - Austen
 58 - Burke (Juliet)
 101 - Faraday
104 - Lewis (Charlotte )
109 - Friendly
 117 - Linus
 124 - Dawson (Michael or Walt).

Then again, some viewers did not care about answers to tangential questions. Why is the supply drop a mystery? Kelvin Inman (and in theory Radzinski) were known to still be in the hatch after the purge. Dharma wasn't going to let them starve to death (especially since no one would be able to push the button if they did). Do we really need someone to come on screen and explain it?

Why/how Jacob took on corporeal form? Was it the ashes? Or, did he have that ability all along but chose to remain ethereal? And what are the island guardian's true powers?

In the sideways arc, the island is underwater. What is the significance of that screen shot?

Desmond tells Hurley Anna Lucia won't be participating in their island reunion because "she's not ready yet." Ready for what? Why are some characters ready and other characters not ready? And why does Desmond get to decide?

Who was  Crazy Mom protecting the light from? Humans who wanted more light, right? This would be before a smoke monster existed.

But if Jacob created the smoke monster, then the light now needs to be protected against the smoke monster?  So are humans no longer a threat to the light? If the smoke monster was never created by Jacob's childish tantrum, his job would be protect from humans only?

Can there be more than one smoke monster if more humans were to get into the light? Does any one of these smoke monsters getting back to the light end humanity? Or is it like, once a smoke monster is born, that's the only one you really gotta watch out for?

That being said...If the Losties kill Smokey, does that mean that everyone automatically shifts to the alternate timeline as their reality? Is there a way to ensure that no other humans will ever find the island in the future (sink it?) so that Jack's job as island protector is finished as quickly as it began and that he can live his wonderful alt life with his family? No Smokey...No island...No need to protect the island...Jack's energy can go to the alt timeline?

Wouldn't it be great if the show ends with Jacob alive and well in the alt timeline, which is now the real timeline; present when all the characters reunite?

5. How Things Would End

It was unanimous that no one knew how the show would end. Many just suspended their own personal likes, dislikes and opinions to let the story unfold on its own terms. Others decided that they once had hope things would be pulled together in a coherent and brilliant fashion by the writers. And more than a few housed doubts whether the ending will satisfy the diehard viewers. A few thought of horrible scenerios:

Example, instead of a plane crash, the sideways world is hit with an earthquake and the concert hall traps the characters:

Desmond = new Jacob

David = new Walt

ack = new Michael . . . "Daaaaaaaaviddd!!!"

Or, Jacks's bleeding neck cut/scratch was caused by Juliet's bullet from the outrigger shootout causing him to die in sideways world.

One fan posted that Eloise was helping Smokey. Smokey (as Christian) was the one who tells Locke to find Eloise Hawking because she'll know how to get back to the island. And she is the one who orchestrates the return of the Losties to the island which Smokey desperately wants so he can kill them all.

Another postulated the following:
My final "candidates" for the premise of the Island's mystery:
1) simulated reality
2) aliens
3) magic
The overall premise could actually be a combination of these points. Premise 1) would probably provide most degrees of freedom for the writers, since everything that happened on the Island could quite consistently be explained this way. Premise 2) would probably be some kind of alien space ship underneath the Island which uses an advanced energy source. In case the final answer is really just premise 3) without a more "scientific" explanation, I wish FMom and Jacob would at least have said "ABRACADABRA" at their wine/water scenes!

My final speculation for the ending regarding the time lines is that the Island timeline will cease to exist and the characters in the ALT-timeline become aware of their ALT life on the Island via sideways flashes. Maybe the existence of the ALT-timeline is Jack's way of "fixing" things in his role as Jacob's successor. I'm sure we will see a lot of reunions/couples and happy ends at the concert:
- Juliet is probably Jack's ex wife and she will finally meet Sawyer at the concert (they are in love since they "remember"...)
- Jack and Kate could also become a couple there
.  Charlie doesn't die in the ALT-timeline and he meets Claire
- I also bet on Faraday and Charlotte; Bernard and Rose; and  Desmond and Penny.

6. The Light at the End of the Tunnel

The overall mood in the Lost community was one of the sense of anticipation being palpable. With next week's finale,  fans have never before been faced with possible disappointment with almost certainty that many mysteries will remain unanswered which some fans will dislike. Lost was an individual experience incorporated into a community discussion. Some viewers would watch the conclusion with no preconceptions, hopes or expectations. Others would watch the finale with the view of a mind-blowing finale that no one saw coming to explain everything.

There would be more sacrifices, it seems.

With so many unanswered questions, and Season 6 piling on big mysteries like the Jacob-MIB and the sideways story line, people were apprehensive about the finale. There were too many open story lines to be completed in one final episode (even an extended one). The conclusion was that each person's list of questions would be answered, theories would be resolved and the show ending in a meaningful, compelling finish were going to be sacrificed for a "show biz" type ending.

Friday, February 15, 2013


There was an awful lot of fan commentary after Across the Sea aired in its original ABC run. Many people thought the back story of newer characters totally out of place in regard to the trials of the regular 815 cast. Again, the following commentary is based upon the LOST blogs I haunted:


1. Island History: good or bad?

This was a split decision. Some viewers hated the idea of another side tangent introducing new character plot lines with only three episodes to go in the series. Jacob and his brother were not characters even introduced in the first two seasons. The concept of adding two major players with a full episode back story was confusing, frustrating and questioning the end game of the writers.

Some viewers thought Across the Sea and Ab Aeterno were good episodes because it finally answered some questions about the mysterious island's history. The events were the only clues to what the 2007 castaways would be up against in the finale.

2. Crazy Mom

She is portrayed as the guardian of the island. But one commentator had a different spin on her:

Jacob’s “mom” was a smoke monster. In a previous episode we were told the smoke monster can be killed with that dagger as long as you don’t let it speak first.

Every time their mother went up to the MIB, she always asked him if she could join him, i.e. when she met him on the beach and when she met him in the well, thereby preventing him from killing her.
When he did kill her, she didn’t say anything. She walked into the cave, and he stabbed her, with the same knife.

How else could she, on her own, have killed that entire tribe, as well as filling up the well?
She told Jacob and his brother that going into the light was worse than death. How would she have known that if she didn’t go in herself? She said “thank you” after Jacob’s brother killed her. He was releasing her from the curse. By Jacob throwing his brother into the light cave, it passed the smoke monster curse on to him. But in order for this theory to be validated, one would have to assume that all three were spirits - - - that the light cave transforms a spirit into an evil smoke monster.

There was a growing consensus that Crazy Mom may have been human at some point. But on the island,  enlightenment changed her being into a semi-god status. She was probably tricked into becoming the guardian. She needed to trick someone to take her place, and children are easier to manipulate. Only when she could confer her powers onto another being (like Jacob), could her job be complete and she could pass on (to next life, rebirth, etc.) So being a guardian is not all it is cracked out to be. The parallel with Desmond and the button is the best way to look at this theme. You believe you are doing something important and good - but you grow weary and tired of your obligation, so you also want to pass it on to someone else, so you can achieve your personal peace.

3. There are no Rules.

There are no set Rules. The one in charge (the guardian) sets the rules. As MIB told young Jacob, he can make up the rules of the game when he is in charge. (Note: I think the game they played was not backgammon or senet, because Jacob was moving pieces in zig zag fashion.) The principle is simple: whoever is in power sets the rules.

But there were problems with the No Rules Rule. It was totally inconsistent from event to event. With the wine ceremony,  Crazy Mom was casting (or unlocking) a magic spell so Jacob could "know" everything about the island and its properties. He was enlightened at that point, giving CrazyMom her opportunity to cease being guardian. But if CrazyMom passing the guardianship to Jacob was the only reason why MIB could kill her that leads to a problem later on.  If this was standing operating procedure, then Jacob already passed on the island guardianship to another person before being killed by Ben. But that did not happen. Ghost Jacob will pass along the job to Jack. Some viewers believed that the wine itself is largely symbolic, and that it is not the chemical properties that lead to wisdom/guardianship.

4. Why bring people to the island?

This episode had no real religious tones.  A few people thought the references to wine and ritual more symbolic than important. The symbol of wine and perhaps the conversations between God and Satan in the book of Job, and the possible comparison between the light at the end of the tunnel and the tree of knowledge of good and evil may all be symbols familiar to Judeo-Christian-Muslim religions, but many fans thought they are intended as such here. They have a religious significance but in the more abstract sense of mythology.

I thought CrazyMom was like a lighthouse keeper. Isolated, alone, but with a specific important job to do, one that apparently she was either chosen or manipulated into taking. She called the shipwreck survivors "people," like it was a derogatory term. MIB also called the people brought to the island in derogatory terms: people always "fight, destroy and corrupt." But Jacob remarked it all was "progress."

Which leads to the strange behavior of Jacob. If it is true that he continues to bring people to the island (like CrazyMom did to find her successor by shipwrecks), as a demi-god why did he need people to build temples or Dharma stations? Likewise, why would he need to leave the island to recruit in order to protect it? Besides, that would prove MIB was right: there was something "across the sea."  But maybe bringing people to the island for centuries was all Jacob's cruel, new game with his brother, that "lowly people" are bad and their CrazyMom was right. However, "across the sea" could have used as a metaphor. It could mean across the galaxy, the plane of existence, the after life or dimensions.

One interesting discussion point was why Jacob or other demi-god on the island need people to build huge monuments or temples.  Or why MIB/Smokey needs a dead body in order to take human form.
The island powers do not enable the guardian to create mass - he simply can influence people. Jacob seemingly can't just blink, and presto - we have a lighthouse. So proponents of "the Genie theory" that island guardians could create anything with a blink of an eye surrendered with this explanation. If Jacob, MIB or smoke monsters cannot create objects or things out of thin air (or in nature with fundamental elements), then that could mean that they themselves have no cohesive mass - - - that they are truly spirits seeking a material world.

I observed that commentators were looking for a time frame for this episode, I thought the only real clue was Claudia, her dress and appearance. I think she represents Claudia Quinta, a Roman leader of the Cult of the Great Mother, circa 205 BC. (There is a National Art Gallery painting of her). She was instrumental in bringing ashore Cybele, the Roman goddess of fertility, earth, caves and mountains to Rome from Greece. It is from 210 BC to 30 BC when the world had the three great civilizations still in place (Egyptian, Greek and Roman). That could explain where hieroglyphs, Greek symbols and Latin can converge on the island.

5. The creation of a smoke monster.

It was quite debatable whether Jacob's killing of his brother by throwing him into the light cave created the smoke monster, or the fact of throwing a body into the cave released a smoke monster. But it seems certain that MIB is a smoke monster. That the smoke monster needed Jacob's brother's body in order to take human form. But in taking that human form, the inconsistent science-fiction is how then did the new smoke monster retain all MIB's memories?

If the life force embodies life, death, and rebirth, then I do not see how mortal man could transform it into healing temple water (unless the death of MIB was the change allowing the guardian to control its properties.) I got the impression that CrazyMom and Jacob's powers were different than the light force. 
Many fans thought the light force might effect different people in different ways, and this might also depend on length of exposure.
 For Rose, just being on the island cured her cancer. For Locke - it allowed him to walk again. But for Ben, it caused him to have a spinal tumor. It may have been responsible for all the pregnant women not giving birth on the island. But then again, it allowed Claire to give birth to Aaron.

One main issue was that the EM life force was stable in the cave at the surface of the island. There was no reason to confine it in the Hatch, or have a "release " computer code. Also, if the light is a natural phenomenon, then anyone came in direct contact with the light, they should have also turned into Smoke Monsters (that means Ben and Locke turning the FDW or Desmond when the Hatch blew up).

In these older time frame episodes, we do hear a louder "clicking" sound and a deep animal moaning when Smokey appears - - -  and the smoke itself is highly charged particles and electric flashes. It sounds like a mechanical creature. But as time passes, the Smoke Monster has less noises attached to it. Is this progress or better technology? And as such, is Smokey truly self aware?

6. The Jacob-MIB dynamic.

We have seen ghost Jacob in adult form speaking to Hurley, why would there be a need for a young ghost Jacob running around the jungle to bug Flocke? If so, did this confirm that Jacob can make multiple apparitions like MIB-Smokey?

One troublesome aspect of this episode was that it created more illogical patterns in the MIB character. If MIB's memories in Smokey may have led him manipulate people brought to the island into creating the FDW. If MIB-Smokey wanted to leave, it could take human form and turn the wheel as Flocke (who has been seen moving objects). But in a thousand years, Smokey never turned the wheel. Unless, turning the wheel destroys him or if he is flashed to the outside world, his non-human substance would cease to be.

But we have been told that Jacob was the one who has been bringing people to the island. Was it was not for MIB's sake?  One explanation is that Jacob accepted the fact that he caused a cascade of events that led to both his CrazyMom's and brother's death. His world had ended. He was left with a substitute brother, the smoke monster. He was looking for a candidate so he could die (his punishment) and rejoin his real brother in death, but he had not found one person who would "accept" the position as guardian.

But is the real island conflict simply that MIB's ghost does not want Jacob to scheme his way off the island by death; he wants to continually punish Jacob for what he did to MIB by keeping Jacob on the island for eternity?

Viewers made symbolic assumptions that Jacob (white) as being good as the "guardian" of the light while MIB-Smokey (black) being bad, evil and a killing machine. But what if the opposite was true? What if the viewers have been conned into believing just Jacob's view of the island?

7. The fan angst.

A large part of the discussion board comments centered around where the story was heading; and the anxiety mounted that there was too much new information and not enough old conclusions to feel good about the final result. With two episodes to go, the series climax was upon us. But it did not seem like a the end of a thrilling rollercoaster ride.

Comments like:
" . . . the more I see the more that the ending looks forced."
"OK Lost staff. Go back and figure out how we can quickly tie up some loose ends and make it look like we really had a huge vision. When we didn't."
 "(I) feel like we are getting all these tiny little "bones" thrown in at the end. All sizzle and no steak. Feeling cheated and a little duped at this point."
"I am holding on to hope that maybe, just maybe, I am being way too cynical and negative and that the show and Damon/Carlton will prove us wrong."
"For me the wheels are falling off the show's consistency, and the result feels cobbled-together."
"What was the point of showing us the Adam and Eve skeletons to eventually show us that they were the MIB and Mommy. What was the point of the revelation?"

One explanation for the viewer concern was that week's poster angst is that the Across the Sea episode seems totally out of place. But if you look back, the production values of cutting off scenes, jumbling the time sequences, flashes were all to create aura of mystery as much as the underlying story, had been a long simmering show critique. In standard story telling, there is a beginning middle and end. The story starts with action, character development, reaction, character choices, climax, then character change. It has always appeared that TPTB wanted to slice out pieces of those conventional story sections and show them out of order to keep viewers in the dark as long as possible.

However, one can tell the viewer what is going on in the background without telling the main characters; classic horror movies do that --- "don't open that door!" moments.

A few commentators really hated the episode. To some, the episode was so disappointing. It's not that we didn't get answers. It's that the answers were stupid.

The issue with this show is that they throw these mysteries at you, and you keep thinking "Wow, what in the world could explain what just happened??" And then you start to wonder if the writers are just making it up as they go along, and there's really nothing behind any of it. If this episode's answers represent what was behind it all, then yes, the writers were just making it up as they go along, and it was all just arbitrary. And finally, their explanation for what was behind it all is just lame.

For example, the Donkey Wheel. We wanted to know what it was, how it worked, why it worked, etc. The answer is: The MIB started building it because some ancient people had "interesting ideas" and because he somehow if he turned it he'd get off the island. How did he know that? Because he's special. That is basically a non-answer. "Because it's magic."

Then the cave. We've been told the island is special in some way, and that various people are trying to get something from it or protect that something. So what is that something? It's... some magical life/death/whatever that's inside every person. Sorry, that is not an answer. It doesn't tie anything together. It just pretends to give an answer to what is behind everything.

Then there's the characters' motivations. Why does Smokey want to get off the island? Because a woman killed his real mother and he wants to go back to where he came from. Really? That's the motivation behind the last two seasons? As I said at the top, that is definitely a concrete answer, but it's just a stupid one.

And that may be LOST's greatest success and its greatest weakness: fan expectations.

A few viewers hoped that there was a possibility that the next two episodes will tie things together better or give better answers that aren't so lame. But contrarians thought at this stage that view seems pretty naive.

Would the big questions really be answered? Simple examples were posted like  the question was posed by Charlie in the pilot episode: "Where are we?" This poster did not want speculation and theories in the end, but wanted to to know what the island was!  That seems like a reasonable request; when you get to the last page of a good mystery novel, you want to know. You expect to gain full knowledge to appreciate the entire work to confirm your entertainment investment in the novel.

Another poster made this comment "I think the disappointment ahead could be that if LOST is the story of the resolution of the Jacob-MIB conflict (which was hidden for five seasons), people will think that all the other story lines were filler."

That cast a dark shadow of pause within the community.

In trying to find deeper meaning in this episode, one could speculate 
MIB's memory of "clever" people with ideas about the life energy could be used to change the past. There are a few common things that both Jacob and MIB would jointly like to correct: a) MIB killing CrazyMom; b) Jacob killing his brother and turning him into Smokey; or c) CrazyMom killing Claudia. The search for time travel may have been the quest, "the progress" of the brothers to make amends with their own Past mistakes. Once they can achieve it, their misery ends.

It appeared that Jacob and MIB had no knowledge of time travel. Bringing people from the great civilizations was the means to their end, but human nature, personality conflicts and greed destroyed all hope for Jacob-MIB's getting their time machine. The problem with this theory is that the 815ers had no scientific skill sets to create time machines or improve on the technology. You would think Jacob would have targeted nuclear scientists, quantum physics professors, Steven Hawking.

The search for time travel may have been the quest, "the progress" of the brothers to make amends with their own Past mistakes. Once they can achieve it, their misery ends. That would answer a lot of questions. But it would not change the feeling that the 815 characters were merely a long filler arc to a three episode Jacob and MIB reunion.

Such angst turned into possible "bad endings" for the show.

How in the hell are they going to rap up the ENTIRE show up in 2.5 hours?! Many viewers could not see how it could be accomplished in a reasonable fashion. Many thought The Answer must be easy...simple. (A head slap moment - - - why didn't we think of that!)

But the "quick fix" endings did not stir confidence in the LOST community.

A. One simple trick ending would be to have the Dharma people in hospital beds in a mind experiment. BUT their body is not really there!!!!! It is too late in the series to throw the whole concept into reverse by saying it was all about mind control experiments (even though the series is riddled with such clues like Room 23, Santa Rosa, Eloise the rat maze). But if TPTB are so stubborn in the position that the series is all about character development, character "destruction" is a viable alternative.

B. Another ending was that the show runners lied to the viewers when they screamed loudly in the first season the island was not "purgatory." TPTB stated that the series was all about character development. Supporters of that view remarked that it could be about a figurative purgatory. The concept of purgatory is built in to the human experience. Life,  death and rebirth. The characters trials and growth to redemption in a figurative or symbolic purgatory could be the answer, as any good character study always is.

However, a review of the show themes was contradictory.

White v. Black theme is open to several interpretations to the literal (Jacob and MIB) to the philosophical (good v. evil). It may or may not be the key to the finale.
  Redemption/resurrection was the long dismissed purgatory concept, which is still a viable solution if the big premise is about testing souls in the after life.
 The EM energy on the island could be a possible solution if properly explained.  The smoke monster is playing a factor as the story winds down since it is the embodiment of MIB, the guardian's departed brother.  The Numbers as mere markers for candidates names held no real significance except coincidence (which probably bummed out theorists the most).  The concept of people being "brought" to the island is another unknown part of the solution or possible mere story line filler.
 unless we find out what the island is.  Widmore, the Others , Dharma and the Tailies. With the exception of whatever role Widmore will play, the Others, Dharma and the Tailies were more filler story arcs.
 The Dharma story line appears to be immaterial to the end game.
 The Hatch seems immaterial except for the introduction of Desmond, whose final role is unknown.
 Blast Door Map appears irrelevant to the final solution.. Tawaret and Egyptology appear irrelevant unless the premise is about the after life.

Part of the collective angst is that many of the seemingly important elements of the show could be rendered immaterial or irrelevant, while new concepts out of left field play a more important role in concluding the show.

C. The idea that the main characters are NOT who we think they are; they are like kids playing make-believe roles of adults: Jack is not a doctor, Kate is not a criminal, Sawyer is not a con man.
Example, Jack. Both the marshal and Boone died in his care. He did not deliver Aaron. His surgery on Ben was filled with medical errors. We are shown Jack as a doctor, but it is a delusion by a person who wants us to look at him in a different way. If you want to find out-of-place episodes, look to the one where Jack goes to Thailand. What knowledgeable, successful doctor would go to Thailand, roll around with a crazy woman in dirty opium dens, and get a back alley tattoo "He walks among us, but is not one of us?" That episode made was a clue that Jack was not a doctor, but a rebellious drop out rich kid traveling the world seeking adventure at daddy's expense. Add "daddy issues" to the concept of transference (or even a world of make believe), you can have an individual with a neurosis that tries to change a person's past to succeed their parents, break parental controls, or escape from their own boring reality. The open question would be what is the actual setting for this childlike escapism.

8. Prediction

Several posters thought that we would still  talking about all of this stuff 4-5 years later....

It will be interesting to see if the ending is so open-ended, that fans will continue to debate its ending for years, or if they will tie it up into a neat bow like so many from the "We want answers" camp are demanding. Seems to me the more that is left unanswered, the greater the lifespan this series will have...???

Sadly, there was no stable will be a cottage industry after LOST ended for fans to write about how they would have wrapped things up (to counterbalance any disappointment).

Thursday, February 14, 2013


Now that the reruns have concluded on cable, and the madness of March will soon be upon us, it is time to look back what fans thought were the key issues, comments or direction LOST was heading in the final four episodes. The commentary is based on views expressed right after the broadcast in the LOST community blogs that I haunted:


This should have been the launch pad for the neat tie up of the series. But instead, it led to some harsh comments on the show's direction.

1. The treatment of children and parenting was a hot button. When Sun was trapped in the submarine, she never used their daughter, Ji Yeon, as a reason for Jin to save himself. They never thought that Jin saving himself for the sake of their daughter was important. Many viewers saw this as a major character flaw. It was a stupid and illogical that newborn parents would not have any strong bond with their only child. There appeared to be a total lack of parental instincts, common sense and the value of human life as the series wound down.

2. The submarine aspects of the show drove fans up the sea wall. Granted, it was a television show, but one that TPTB claimed to have crafted super-intelligently, but could not hold water. People observed the obvious and significant issues with the scene:

A. The sub was located inside a harbor. It would take several minutes to leave the harbor to get into open water to dive.

B.  Within a minute after diving, Jack finds a bomb below deck which meant that the submarine was not at any deep depth. Realistically, it should have still been on the surface in the harbor. The camera angle on the sub was level; this was not a "crash dive" but a normal one. Normal dive can be at most 50 feet per minute. Based on the sequence of events, the sub was probably less than 20 feet below the surface with more than 3 minutes left on the bomb clock (i.e. plenty of time to surface).

C. Submarines fixtures are all built in structures. A cabinet coming loose and trapping Sun was highly unrealistic. In addition, Sun being pinned by wall pipes meant that she had to wedge herself behind them before the explosion. Really? She did that?

D. Sayid taking the ticking bomb down the hallway, but not shutting the blast door was dumb, too. Submarines are built to be water proof segments. Besides, the bomb blast down the ship hall would not have dislodged the cabinets and pipes to trap Sun.

If they were trying to re-create the Looking Glass death scene, the set-up for Charlie's death was more believable than the Jin-Sun tragedy.

3. Many people observed the unbelievable inconsistency in the vague explanation and motivation of Flocke. First he said he needed all the 815ers to leave "with him." Then he needed to kill them all. Then he needed to kill all the candidates.

If Flocke needs all of the candidates to die in order for him to leave the Island, then why didn't he just let Widmore's mortar bombs kill the candidates? Zoe came over to the camp and threatened to bomb the camp if Flock didn't return Desmond? Why didn't Flocke just let her bomb the camp? He had all the candidates there except for Jin (and Jin might not even be a candidate - he had Sun which gave him a 50/50 chance of possibly having ALL the candidates in one place at the same time).
The missed opportunities for Flocke to kill off the candidates was unreal. With the sonic fences off, couldn't MIB as Smokey have easily killed Widmore and his entire group during the bear cage scene? 
When Zoe and Widmore's gang came to ask for Desmond back why they weren't all just "Smokied" right there. Certainly would have weakened Widmore's position and given MIB free reign to finish what he started.

4. The whole explosive nature of blowing up the plane to stop Flocke from leaving had one big story line hole: If Richard and Ben had stable Dharma C4 at the barracks, there was no reason for Ilana's crew go get the dangerous and unstable Black Rock dynamite. So no matter what any character said afterward, Ilana's death had no meaning or purpose. But it did follow a dark theme as the series was winding down: the shows turned into more of a human hunt than character development.

5. There were creeping major concerns about what we would find out about the island. Fused with that concern was the open question of what the sideways world meant, if anything, to the resolution of the island story. I disliked the sideways world then because I thought it is a last season crutch to be probably used as "an out" to not explain the mysteries that have piled up in the previous five seasons.

For the first five seasons, the island world could have been classified either as a) real, b) real people in a different realm, c) the after life, or d) something else (dreams, mind control).

By adding the sideways story arc, as its own contained and separate universe, the classification of the island world to the final story resolution multiplied the confusion. There is now at least 16 possible explanations of the saga (example, island world is (d) mind control in the sideways (a) real world; or island world is (c) after life test of redemption to pass on to (a)/(c) a "new life" in the sideways world.)

The idea of a "multi-universe" explanation was received with tepid remorse like old theories such as
815 flies through the electromagnetic burst which causes all sleeping passengers to have a collective dream/nightmare; and they "die" on the island by "waking up."

Many fans commented on another dilemma, the EM quandary. Typically in other television shows, a magical particle/energy substance had been used as a device to jump to alternate universes. If the island EM was used as a portal between universes, why was Widmore so keen on taking control of it? If Widmore is "amped" on getting this thing to work then he is in knowlege of an Alt uni. If that's the case, which one of the universes is he trying to "jump" to, or who is he wanting to "jump" where to do what? He was rich and powerful in both universes. Both universes were self contained and the characters functioning independently of the other universe.

A device such as an "EM field" is frequently used to keep things in, or keep things out.
So several people raised a big question:  What is Widmore's ultimate purpose for the home-made Stargate looking thing that buzzes or chars people but leaves bunnies unharmed? And that is another critical flaw in the story: the EM properties are inconsistent from season to season.

6. There was a growing angst that the series might not end well. Commentators did not want the show to be about  the after life, or  something else like dreams or a mind control experiment.  TPTB have been so adamant for so long about rejecting both options that they would lose all credibility to pull either of those rabbits out of the hat at the end of the series.

The mythology of the show had to be crystalized in order to attain full acceptance. But as the creative force behind the series, Darlton viewed the show as primarily about the characters and their arc of redemption. The idea of having the characters already dead, or in some sort of Bob Newhart-Bobby Ewing extended dream sequence destroys the reality of everything that has occurred over the first five seasons. Fans wanted to have confirmation that the events of the first five seasons were actual "real" events in the Lost universe. Any ending had to accomodate that premise and not dilute the viewer and character investment in what has already happened.

7. The beginning of the Big Why? questions. 

Why is there an EM breach? (Is this the portal between the parallel universes that needs to be capped?)
Why are humans brought to the island if the EM science is beyond their knowledge and technological skills? (Are tasty human souls the real food for Smokey?)
Why would the guardians treat their island mission (holding back the breach) as a game?
Why did several characters say "the Island isn't done with you yet."
Why did/does the island move in time?
Why are there "rules" which some people know (or think they know) but we, as viewers, don't know?
Why is the vague explanation "whatever happened happened" so important in the island universe?
Why is Widmore so important to the island's survival?

8. There was a growing concern about the relationship between the island and sideways stories.
Most critical was question "why are the two worlds time shifted?"

The sideways world is set in 2004.

The island world is currently in 2007.

If a single universe, looping on itself:
How could sideways Desmond, Charlie or Faraday "pull" memories from the island future, if their present was already changed in past?

If parallel universes:
How could sideways Desmond, Charlie or Faraday "pull" memories from the island future, when there is no "overlap" in both worlds to act as a portal? (the island in sideways 2004 is underwater, so no of the 815ers are there to start any process of change).

Some commentators responded that what happened in one universe,  did not happen in the other. It is relative. Only a person's consciousness would pass from time line to time line. However, the debate went on: that was a paradoxical point: there is no need for consciousness to move from one dimension to the other if the parallel universes are already self-contained, separate time lines. The island incident did not reboot a single time line/universe because apparently the island time line still exists in 2007. There is no evidence that the island incident created the sideways universe. A paradox is a statement or proposition that, despite sound (or apparently sound) reasoning from acceptable premises, leads to a conclusion that seems senseless, logically unacceptable, or self-contradictory.

Many fans thought he sideways universe was created long before "the incident," and  long before Flight 815.The two time lines co-exist but the mystical forces that are unexplained on the island allow certain individuals that are on the island to transcend the other time-line on a consciousness level. Memories of an alternate life are uploaded with the help of a special catalyst. Some thought Desmond was that catalyst.

Others cited the example of the Steven King story, the Langoliers. In that story, ten sleeping passengers on an airplane awake to find that all their fellow passengers and crew missing. An off-duty pilot lands the plane at a deserted airport where nothing inhabits this dead world except for monsters who devour people who are lazy or waste time. The characters come to realize that they have gone through a time rip, and try to find a way back to their own time and world.

Viewers began to doubt which time line was "real" or most significant: the island or the sideways. Trying to logically deduce which time line was correct was hard. The flashbacks and sideways being part of the same time line because key character differences, like Desmond knowing Penny before the island events in the flashbacks. However, if the island events are the "fake" time line, that is probably the worst possible story line because many viewers had invested five years in it.

Many fans hated and loathed the idea of the sideways universe was being "projected" as a reward universe for those who made deals with MIB. That made little sense, since the show that started off with survival of a plane crash on an mysterious island searching for rescue as its main plot, is turning into one massive human hunt by MIB. It did not seem MIB/Smokey cared about anyone but itself.

So The Candidate episode did not quell many anxieties in the show's final direction.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


POSTING NOTE: The G4 reruns of LOST have concluded in this final story arc. More analysis will come in the future as we ponder the immediate reaction to the finale.
Recap: Episodes 117-120/21 (Days ????- - ????)

On the beach Sayid explains to Jack that Widmore attacked their group with mortars and that Locke had saved Jack. He says that the rest of Flocke’s army have scattered into the jungle, so that it is now just Locke, Sayid, and Jack.  Flocke arrives and announces that Jack's friends have been seized by Widmore and that he now wants to rescue them. Jack asks why Widmore would capture them and Locke replies sarcastically that he would ask but he doesn't think Widmore will talk to him. He suggests they break them out, run for the plane and be off the Island before Widmore knows what is happening. Jack says that they are not his people and that he is not leaving the Island. Locke hopes Jack will change his mind but in the meantime he needs Jack to get his friends to trust him. Locke reinforces that Jack can trust him by pointing out that although he could kill Jack and his friends at any time without impediment, he hasn't and has instead saved Jack's life and now he wants to save Jack's friends too.

On their trek to the plane, Kate asks Jack whether he is coming with them now and Jack tells her that he will help them get on the plane but will not join them because he is "not meant to go".  Sayid arrives and says they need to go because Locke is waiting. Locke strides up to the plane, unfazed by Widmore's guards as they shoot at him. He breaks one guard's neck and shoots the other and takes the dead man's digital wristwatch. He goes into the plane and examines exposed wiring leading to a pack of C4 explosives. The survivors arrive and find the dead men. Locke emerges from the plane and admits that he killed them but that Widmore knew he would kill them otherwise he wouldn't have removed his "little fences."  He explains that Widmore wants them all together in a confined space so that he can kill them all, showing them the C4 he found. Locke says their new plan is to leave via the submarine because they can't be sure the plane does not have more booby traps. Hurley tries to remind everyone that Alpert said Flocke is not meant to leave the Island, but Sawyer cuts him off, pointing out that Alpert is not here. Sawyer then thanks Flocke for twice saving them and says that he was wrong about him. Locke says that the submarine will be heavily defended and that they will need everyone. Jack reiterates he will help, but he is not going to leave with them. As they leave, Claire apologizes to Flocke who says he understands. Sawyer whispers to Jack that he doesn't trust “Locke” one bit and asks Jack to make sure Flocke doesn't get on the sub.

Jack asks Jin for his pack to treat Kate's wound, only to find Locke has put the plane's C4 in his bag and rigged a bomb, using the watch he stole from the slain guard as a timer. The timer is counting down from 3:54. Jack realizes what is going on and tells them all that they have done exactly what Locke wanted.  Jack demands that they surface and tells Sawyer that Flocke intended all along to be left behind at the dock. Frank informs them that the captain says it will take five minutes to surface.
The timer nears 3:20. Sayid explains how to disarm the bomb but he has some doubt whether it will work. Sawyer is about to pull the wires but Jack stops him, saying that nothing is going to happen; the bomb won't detonate if they leave it alone. He explains that they have done exactly what Locke wanted: just as Locke had said of Widmore, "He wanted to get us all in the same place at the same time. A nice enclosed space where we had no hope of getting out of." He explains that Locke has been saying he can't leave the Island without them but what is really the case is that he can't leave the Island unless they are all dead. Jack surmises that Locke cannot kill them directly and is trying to get them to kill each other by pulling the wires from the C4.

Jack asks Sawyer why Flocke would use a timer and not just throw the bomb into the sub. He pleads that they will be okay, they just have to trust him. Sawyer says he's sorry and quickly pulls the wires out. The timer stops at 1:31 and nothing happens at first. Then the timer restarts and races down. Sayid says “Listen carefully. There is a well on the main island half a mile south from the camp we just left. Desmond’s inside it. Locke wants him dead which means you are going to need him, do you understand me?” Jack asks why Sayid is telling him this. Sayid hurriedly says "Because it's going to be you, Jack." He picks up the C4 and runs down the passageway. The bomb explodes in his hands, killing him.

Jack swims to the beach with Sawyer, who coughs up some water. Hurley and Kate stumble down the beach to meet them. Kate asks about Jin and Sun but Jack shakes his head. Hurley and Kate sob while Jack walks away to the sea and cries bitterly.

Flocke, still at the pier, tells Claire that the submarine has sunk. Claire is shocked that they are all dead but Flocke says that not all of them are dead. He takes his pack and rifle and Claire asks where he is going. He replies, "To finish what I started."

In a flashback of the Jacob origin story, a woman raises the black playing piece she is run through from behind by the Man in Black's daggar. With tears in his eyes the Man in Black addresses her as "Mother" and asks why she wouldn't let him leave. As she dies she says: "Because I love you... Thank you."

Jacob returns and sees what his brother has done and attacks him as he did as a thirteen year old. He drags his brother through the jungle. The Man in Black reminds him that Jacob cannot kill him. Jacob replies that he has no intention of killing him. He brings him to the glowing cave and throws him down the stream towards the mouth of the cave. The Man in Black hits his head on a rock and goes limp, then is sucked into the source. Moments later the Smoke Monster bursts from the cave and disappears into the jungle. Jacob washes himself at a stream and sees his brother's broken body draped over branches nearby. (The inference is that the Smoke Monster killed MIB).  He hugs him tearfully. Jacob carries his body back home and finds the two jewels and places them in a pouch. He lays Crazy Mother and the Man in Black's bodies side by side with the pouch at Mother's hand.
On the beach, Jack gives first aid to Kate’s shoulder wound. Kate is pale and emotional. As Jack stitches, she reflects on Ji Yeon, crying that Jin never met his own daughter. She and Jack concede bitterly that Flocke must be killed.  Kate leans on Sawyer's shoulder as a deep sadness consumes them all. At Jack's urging, they set off to find Desmond. Jack acknowledges that if Locke wants Desmond then "we are going to need him."

As they hike, a miserable Sawyer wonders why Flocke didn't just kill Desmond. Jack suggests maybe it was one of his 'rules'. Sawyer suggests that he himself was responsible for the deaths on the sub, because he attempted to defuse the bomb against Jack's advice. Jack insists that “Flocke” killed them. Just behind them, Hurley notices the young Jacob standing by an ancient hut. The boy suddenly appears in front of Hurley and demands Ilana’s ash pouch. As Hurley asks what he wants them for, the boy snatches them and runs off. Hurley chases him and comes across adult Jacob seated by a fire. Jacob tells Hurley that the ashes are in the fire and that when the fire goes out, he will not be seen again, adding "We are very close to the end."

As night falls, Hurley leads Kate, Sawyer and Jack to Jacob's fire. Jacob greets them by their first names. Hurley is surprised that they can all see Jacob. Kate asks Jacob whether he is the one who wrote the names on the wall, and whether it is their candidacy that ultimately led to their deaths. She also demands to know that Sun, Jin, and Sayid didn't die for nothing. Jacob says he will tell the group what they died for and why he chose them. He adds that by the time the fire is out one of them will have to take his place as protector of the Island.

Jacob explains that a very long time ago he made a mistake, and as a result there is a good chance that everyone is going to die. (This is an inference to killing his brother and/or unleashing the smoke monster).  He acknowledges that he is responsible for the current state of the Man in Black. The Monster has been trying to kill him and that when it succeeded, someone would have to replace him: that is why he brought them all to the Island. Challenged by Sawyer, Jacob explains that he didn't drag anyone out of a happy existence but that they were all flawed. He says that he chose them because they were all like him - all alone, all looking for something that they couldn't find. He says he chose them because they needed the Island as much as the Island needed them. (Misery loves company). Jacob tells Kate her name was crossed off because she became a mother, but that she is not disqualified. He explains that the task for the candidate is to protect the light at the center of the Island.

Jacob says that they must do what he couldn't do: kill “him.” Jack asks whether that is even possible and Jacob says that he hopes so because Flocke is certainly going to try to kill them. Jacob offers the remaining candidates a choice of who will take his place - Jack accepts, acknowledging that he is on the island for this very purpose. Jacob asks Jack to affirm this decision, and is pleased when he does.
Jacob takes Jack to the creek. As the others watch from a distance, Jacob tells Jack where to find the light at “the heart of the island,” explaining that while Jack has never seen the light before, he will be able to find it now that he has been chosen to protect it. Jacob asks Jack for his tin cup, which he fills with water, recites an incantation, and solemnly offers the cup to Jack. Before he drinks, Jack asks about the duration of the job he is about to accept. Jacob tells him he must do it "As long as you can." Jack drinks. Jacob embraces him and says “Now you are like me.”

At the Barracks, Smokey attacks Richard. Afterward, Ben shows Flocke where Widmore and Zoe hiding.  Smokey tells him to wait outside, but Ben says he wants to see this.

When he turns the light on in the hidden room, Ben says "Sorry Charles." Locke asks who Zoe is and as she starts to reply Widmore tells her not to talk or say anything. Flocke reacts by slashing Zoe's throat. He says that as Widmore told her not to talk to him that made her pointless. Flocke tells Widmore that to motivate him to tell him what he wants to know, the first thing he will do when he is off the Island is to kill Widmore’s daughter, Penny, the love of Desmond’s life. He gives his word that he won't kill her if Widmore talks to him. Widmore says he brought Desmond back because of his unique resistance to electromagnetism and that he was a measure of last resort. Widmore tells Flocke he won't say anything more in front of Ben. Flocke asks him to whisper in his ear. As he whispers Ben shoots Widmore dead with a pistol. Ben says "he doesn't get to save his daughter."

Flocke says that Ben never ceases to amaze him, but Widmore had already told him what he needed to know. Ben then asks whether there are some "other people to kill." Flocke gives a gloating look. Flocke tells Ben that he said Desmond was a fail safe; that if he killed the "beloved candidates" he was one final way for Jacob to be sure that he would never leave this place. Ben asks why Locke is happy that Desmond is still free. Flocke says that when he finds Desmond he will get him to do the one thing he could never do himself: "Destroy the Island."

Sawyer meets up with Jack, Kate and Hurley and tells them Flocke plans to destroy the island and how important it is to find Desmond before Flocke and Ben do. Jack tells him it doesn't matter who finds Desmond because they are all going to the same place anyway. Sawyer asks what happens then. Jack answers, "And then it ends."

Flocke's group and Jack's group meet. Kate reacts by snatching Sawyer's gun and shooting at Flocke, but to no effect. Flocke tells her “to save her bullets.” He walks up to Jack and says: "So it's you", adding that he's somewhat surprised that Jacob chose Jack, as he is sort of the obvious choice. Jack corrects him and says he wasn't chosen, but that he volunteered. Locke assumes Jack is going to try and stop him but Jack admits that he can't and will instead go with him. Flocke then thinks Jack doesn't understand what he plans to do, but Jack is clear that he certainly does, that he's going to the light, the place Jack has sworn to protect, where he thinks he's going to destroy the island. Jack says Flocke won't destroy the island. Instead, Jack will kill him, and how he plans to do that is a surprise.
As they hike towards the Source, Sawyer asks Jack how he is going to kill Flocke. Jack simply answers, "Desmond", but that he's not yet sure exactly how it's going to work. He's sure Jacob brought him back not as bait but as a weapon. When the group reaches the bamboo forest near the Source, Locke draws his knife and says it should just be him, Jack, and Desmond from here on.

Once at the cave of the Source, Locke ties a rope to a tree while Jack ties the other end around Desmond.  Desmond tells Jack that this - killing Locke and destroying the Island - doesn't matter because once he goes into the cave, he'll go to another place where they can be with the ones they love, where they never have to see the island again, and where a happier version of Jack exists. (Desmond is flashing to the after life purgatory of the sideways world, meaning he knows he is already dead on the island.)  After saying that maybe there's a way he could bring Jack there too, Jack says that he found there are no shortcuts or do-overs; that  “what ever happened, happened” and that all of this matters. The three men enter the cave.

Jack and Locke enter the cave and begin to lower Desmond into the brilliant abyss. The Man in Black remembers John Locke's memories of Jack and he, looking at Desmond down in a hole in the ground, lightheartedly commented on their bickering on whether or not to push the button. Jack cuts him short. "You're not John Locke; you disrespect his memory by wearing his face, but you're nothing like him." Jack insists that John was right about almost everything, and wished he got to tell him this when he was still alive. Flocke says John wasn't right about anything and that when the Island drops into the ocean and Jack drops with it, then he will realize this. Jack suggests they just watch and see who turns out to be right, and the two look down the waterfall now that Desmond has reached the bottom.

He finds the Source, a glowing pool, filled by a small waterfall, with an elongated stone with ancient markings engraved on it at its center. He enters the water as electromagnetic energy emanates from the source. Desmond is clearly in pain, and his nose bleeds. Jack and Locke hear his screams. Desmond reaches the center stone and lifts it, like removing a giant stopper in the center of the pool. The stream from the waterfall stops, the electromagnetic force recedes, the light goes out, the pool dries up and there is a red hot glow emitting from the center. Desmond screams "No!" Flocke says to a very worried Jack: "It looks like you were wrong." Flocke says goodbye and leaves as earthquakes begin to wrack the Island.

Jack chases Flocke out of the cave in a fit of fury, punching him in the mouth and jumping on him when he falls. Flocke bleeds from the mouth. Jack sees the blood and says, "It looks like you were wrong too." Jack's hands move towards Locke's throat as they struggle. Flocke finds a rock and hits Jack over the head with it, and gets up and runs off as Jack becomes unconscious.

Flocke stands on the cliff above the cliff side cave, looking at Desmond’s boat anchored a short distance offshore. Before he can make it to the boat, Jack catches up to him. Flocke turns around and the two face each other for the final showdown. Locke draws his knife and they run at each other across the uneven ground.  Jack leaps at Locke and they fight as the storm rages and cliffs disintegrate.

Flocke drops his knife, but during the struggle he picks it up and inflicts a fatal wound under Jack's rib cage. As he tries to finish him off, Flocke tells Jack that "he died for nothing." Just then, Kate shoots him from behind; she "saved him a bullet." Jack struggles to his feet, but another quake shakes the Island and Flocke says Jack is "too late" just before the rumbling stops. Jack kicks him off the cliff to the rocks below, and the evil Man in Black, the Smoke Monster, is apparently dead.
Ben tells the group that Frank and the rest are leaving, and if they are going to catch up they had better get to the boat and sail to Hydra island quickly. Jack says that whatever Desmond turned off, he needs to turn it back on again. But he says that if people are going to leave they need to get on that plane.  Kate tells him that he doesn't need to do this, but Jack is adamant that he does. Jack wishes Sawyer good luck.

Ben passes Sawyer the walkie saying that if the Island is going down then he is going down with it. Hugo refuses to climb the rickety wooden ladders and tells Jack that he is with him. Kate and Jack share a tearful goodbye - they have a final kiss and declare their love for each other. The island continues to shake uncontrollably. Sawyer calls Frank, who tells them he is going to leave while there is still ground to leave on. Sawyer and Kate jump off the cliffs and into the sea. They swim out to the Elizabeth.

Hurley helps Jack as they return with Ben to the Source. Jack tells them he is going down alone and makes it clear that he knows he will not survive. Jack explains to an overwrought Hurley that this is what is supposed to happen. Jack tells Hugo that it is he who the Island needs, that his job was to fix the source but after that it should be Hugo. Jack tells Hugo that he believes in him. Hugo agrees, but only till Jack returns. Ben finds an Oceanic bottle and Jack fills it from a leftover pool of water from the previously active stream and gives it to Hurley. After Hurley drinks, Jack tells him, “ Now you are like me."

Jack finds Desmond and carries him back to the rope. Desmond wants to return the plug but Jack tells him he has done enough and he needs to go home to be with his wife and son. Desmond asks Jack what will happen to him. Jack says that he'll see him in another life, "Brother.”
Jack finds the cork and drops it into the Source. Jack lies exhausted in the empty pool but a trickle of water starts flowing and then the light starts to return. Hugo and Ben haul on the rope and find Desmond on the end of it. Below, Jack sobs with relief as he is engulfed in the light.

Ben and Hugo are with Desmond. Hugo takes in the idea that Jack has gone.  Ben comforts him by telling Hugo that he did his job. Ben tells a frightened Hugo that he can do his job as the island's new protector by doing what he does best: taking care of people. Hugo asks how he can do things like helping Desmond to go home when people can't leave the Island.  Ben says that that is how Jacob ran things and that maybe there is a better way. Hugo asks Ben for his help, saying he needs someone with experience. Ben says he would be honored.

Jack awakens in the creek outside of the light source cave.  Knowing that his life is ending, clutching his fatal wound and in obvious pain, he slowly finds his way back to the bamboo grove where he first arrived on the island after the 815 crash.  As he does, he passes by the white shoe, still hanging from the branch, and collapses to the ground in the same spot where he awoke after the crash of Flight 815.
He hears a dog barking and turns his head to see Vincent running toward him through the trees. As the dog licks his face and lies down beside him, The Ajira plane soars overhead, and he is overcome with joy and laughs.

In the sideways world, a reunion is held.

Jack tells Kate that this is where he was going to have his father's funeral. He asks Kate why she brought him here. She says "Because this is where you were going to have your father's funeral." She goes to leave and she says that they will be waiting for him, once he's ready. Jack asks, "Ready for what?" Kate tells him, "To leave."

Jack goes into the church via a back entrance. In a chapel filled with symbols of different religions, he finds Christian's coffin and touches it, awakening to more memories from the Island. He opens the coffin but it is empty. Jack hears a voice, and it is his father, standing in the room. Jack tells him he doesn't understand, because Christian died, and asks his father how he could be there. Christian simply asks, "How are you here?" Jack realizes that he himself has died too. They embrace tearfully and say they love each other. (Did the cork also repress the memories that needed to be awakened in the dead souls?)

Jack is confused, and skeptical that the man he is speaking with is even real. Christian reassures him that they are real, Jack's life was real, and the people in the church are real. Jack asks if everyone else is dead too, and Christian explains that "everyone dies sometime, kiddo. Some before you, some long after you." When Jack asks why everyone is here now, Christian responds that "There is no now here", and that this is a place they all made together to find one another, because the most important part of Jack's life was the time he spent with these people, and that's why they are all here; no one lives life alone. He needed them, and they needed him; to remember, and to let go. Jack tells Christian that Kate said they were all leaving. Christian explains they aren't leaving; they're moving on. Jack asks where to, and his father tells him, "Let's go find out."

Jack enters the nave. He is welcomed by Locke, who kindly tells him, "We've been waiting for you." He then greets Desmond, Boone, Hurley, Sawyer and Kate. Joining them are Charlie, Claire, Aaron, Jin, Sun, Sayid, Shannon, Rose, Bernard, Juliet, Libby and Penny.  After the group has shared embraces and celebrated their reunion, they sit down in the church pews. Christian begins to walk to the back of the church through the middle aisle, and pauses briefly by Jack to put his hand on his shoulder. Christian approaches the back, opens the doors of the church and glowing white light from beyond the doors washes over all present. Jack exchanges a smile with Kate, and then looks ahead as they are engulfed by the light.


The Kush in Sudan were an ancient people. Scientists last year found a small area that contained 35 burial pyramids in a 5,000 sq. ft area. One of the most interesting new finds was an offering table found by the remains of a pyramid. It appears to depict the goddess Isis and the jackal-headed god Anubis and includes an inscription, written in Meroitic language, dedicated to a woman named "Aba-la," which may be a nickname for "grandmother.”

It reads in translation:

Oh Isis! Oh Osiris!
It is Aba-la.
Make her drink plentiful water;
Make her eat plentiful bread;
Make her be served a good meal.

The offering table with inscription was a final send-off for a woman, possibly a grandmother, given a pyramid burial nearly 2,000 years ago.

This points to the continued ritual tradition that people believed that once a person died, they would live another life in the after life. The descendants gave offerings so that their ancestors could live a good “second” life - - - in some respects, continue the norm of their prior existence in peace. We continue to discover more and more evidence that the earliest cultures had deep convictions in an after life.

Improbable Elements:

A large jetliner with bent wing tips would not be able to take off on short Hydra Island.

The island friends and enemies creating an elaborate, complex, interactive sideways "after life" world without remembering ever creating it.


When a mystery story ends, there are not supposed to be more “clues” to what happened. There were many cryptic answers to some of the burning questions, but many of the key story elements were thrown out as immaterial, irrelevant or in pure conflict with the ending resolution.

The only “clue” or piece of information to solve the entire LOST complex is that in the last episode, EVERYONE GOT WHAT THEY WANTED. How in the Hell is that possible?


“ The liberally educated person is one who is able to resist the easy and preferred answers, not because he is obstinate but because he knows others worthy of consideration. ”

— Allan Bloom

LOST left a stinging amount of more questions than answers.

Why is Christian the band leader in the sideways church? Why are not the other characters parents, siblings or loved ones present in their after life? Why is Locke still alone (no Helen from sideways world?) Why is Boone alone? Why are there no other parents or family members of the reunion cast in the church?

Also, why do you think Aaron had to be born again in the season six purgatory? How can he born literally be born "twice?" Does he go to heaven as a baby? He presumably lived a long, normal life off the island. Unless he never was born in real life.  A prop in the sideways world or died as an infant. Or he was merely a prop Claire created in herself to obtain some measure of sympathy from others in her measly life. The same is true for David, Jack’s son with Juliet in the sideways world. Did he ever exist, or was he a prop (like  Aaron?)

We are told that Jacob’s  life is ash; when the fire goes out, he ceases to exist. He must pass on his powers at his end (to Jack) who has the guardian’s powers to protect the island from MIB. Where do these ritualistic powers come from? It is a childlike game where one kid, the leader, makes the rules and controls the game.

When the fire goes out, Jacob as a smoke creature, ceases to be - - - much like his brother.

If the cork is removed, the water stops, the light goes out, the island destroys itself, and MIB becomes mortal. If the cork is replaced, the water returns, the light turns on, the island is saved, but the life force does not reincarnate Jacob or MIB - - - they are gone forever. So in one sense, the pulling and replacing the stone cork is exactly like rebooting a crashed computer hard drive. It wipes out the cache (Jacob and MIB) to start the processors all over again. So if Desmond and Jack went into the cave that created MIB as a smoke creature (or an existing beast released from the stone cork assumed his dead body), why did not Desmond or Jack become a smoke beast? Desmond had the electromagnetic spell and the knowledge that he was already dead and awake in the sideways purgatory. Jack continued his personal dilution that he had to stay on the island to “fix” his life, a life which did not really exist as set forth in the sideways reality.

And what happens to the people that left the island? Frank, Kate, Claire, Richard, Sawyer, Miles - - - they were going back to what? Richard had no one for centuries. Kate still has no one. Sawyer wants no one. Frank has no future. Claire is dead and crazy infected evil. And for those who believe these people were “alive” on the island - - - the sideways world was proven not to be real so these castaways did not fly to that fantasy world. How could they return to the real world, especially Sawyer and Claire who were “dead” during the O6 story arc. And how did Desmond get home to Penny? Hurley and Ben had little resources left on the island to do anything.

And what happens to the people that were left on the island? There were about a dozen Others, including Cindy and the children, Zach and Emma. Did they stay on the island to live out their survivor lives? Hurley and Ben as the new leaders of the island (Jacob and Alpert roles) had NO MEANS to leave the island, let alone “shut it down” except for dying - - - like Jack. All we know is that Hurley and Ben awaken in sideways purgatory, but for no justifiable reason, Ben gets to stay “to work things out” with Rousseau - - - which makes even less sense: for Ben tortured her in the island life, kidnapped her daughter, and caused her to be executed for the mistaken sake of the island. So, does Ben get “rewarded” for being bad and evil in the island world? And why would Rousseau or Alex, when they REMEMBER him, want to STAY with him forever? Is he now the new Eloise, who was hell-bent on not awakening Daniel? Ben now gets to live a fantasy existence as a nerdy school teacher? Is that his heaven? So how can people know their past island judgment world and not “move on” upon their island demise?

And where is Helen for Locke? In the sideways paradise world view, she was still with him. They were going to be married. So is this proof that the sideways world was a mere collection of subconscious dream-fantasies of the island castaways? And why was Boone also alone at the End? Was his life so pathetic he could not even be reunited with his parents? What did he do wrong in his life to be left alone forever?

Claudia was first known pregnant woman to arrive on the island, brought by Crazy Mother wrecking her ship. Her newborn children were stolen by Crazy Mother. She killed Claudia to raise Jacob and his brother. The brothers have a sibling rivalry. They become disenchanted with their island life. MIB wants to leave with his fellow Roman villagers; Crazy Mother forbids it. Crazy Mother kills all of them; in a rage, MIB kills Crazy Mother. In a rage, Jacob kills his brother (creating or releasing) the Smoke Monster.

So Jacob is left totally alone on the island, except for his ghost brother/smoke monster. Their sibling rivalry and conflicts continue. Since Jacob is the “most” alive, he gets to set the rules; a game which would allow his brother his final peace (or would it if the evil smoke monster was trying to con Jacob into allowing him to leave his prison to destroy the universe).

Rousseau was the next known pregnant woman to arrive on the island, brought by Jacob. She gave birth to Alex, who was stolen by Ben to be his daughter. Ben’s actions caused Rousseau and Alex to be killed by Widmore’s men. Ghost Alex told Ben to follow everything that Flocke would tell him, which led to Ben killing Jacob.

The last woman to give birth on the island was Claire. Her son, Aaron, was taken off the island by Kate, and raised in LA. Claire was killed (infected) by Widmore’s men on a raid on the barracks. Claire abandoned her baby to follow ghost Christian (MIB). Claire tells her fellow castaways that “she is with him now,” meaning Flocke, because “he was the only one not to abandon me.”

Why were the island "rules" so haphazard and inconsistent, especially during the end sequences where both Jacob and his brother die from false assumption after false assumption of what happens when the light cave is messed with? Do we really know Jacob and MIB actually died? 

And if Jacob "created" the smoke monster by killing his brother (a rule violation) in the classical Roman period, then why is the smoke monster depicted in Egyptian temple mural thousands of years before MIB's smoke creation? Is the chronology of the island actually going backwards towards the first civilizations before the Egyptian period of 3000 BC?

The problem with the sideways world is that Sawyer continues to false legal basis of Kate’s crimes (waiting for the feds to pick her up for murder - - - which is incorrect in American jurisprudence). The sideways world also continues the medical errors and Jack’s surgical miracles. It shows that both the island and the after life are connected in such a fashion that both story lines have the same core operating factors. Which means that both island and after life are post-death states of existence.
Otherwise, how can a dead person communicate with his “living self” as Desmond did with his flashes.

Whose “story” is LOST? Many believe it is about Jack, since it is his eye that opens at the beginning and closes at the end. But it would appear that the man making all the moves would be Jacob. but the first reference to “Jacob” in The Man Behind the Curtain, Season 3, Episode 20:

Act 2
[Inside Ben's tent, Locke and Ben discuss matters over a glass of alcohol.]
BEN: I know I promised to tell you everything, John, and I wish it was as simple as me taking out a dusty old book and opening it up.
[He offers Locke a glass, but is met with a blank face. He places the glass next to him instead.]
BEN: But it's not that simple.
LOCKE: How about you just tell me?
BEN: You probably think I'm the leader of this little community, but that's not entirely true. We all answer to someone, John.
LOCKE: And whom might that be?
BEN: His name is Jacob.
LOCKE: Okay, then. Take me to Jacob.
BEN: I can't do that.
[John gets up and heads to leave.]
BEN: Where are you going?
LOCKE: Hell, Ben, if you don't wanna take me, maybe someone else will. I'll just go and ask Richard...
BEN: Why would Richard take you? He doesn't know where Jacob is. He doesn't talk to Jacob...
LOCKE: Well, who talks to him?
BEN: I do.
LOCKE: So you're the only one who talks to him?
BEN: That's right!
LOCKE: And no one else knows where he is?
BEN: I was born here on this Island. I'm one of the last that was. Most of these people you see—I brought them here. So Jacob talks to me, John. He tells me what to do, trusts me.
LOCKE: And no one else has ever seen him?
BEN: That's right.
LOCKE: How convenient. You know what I think, Ben? I think there is no Jacob. I think your people are idiots if they believe you take orders from someone else. You are the man behind the curtain, the Wizard of Oz. And you're a liar.
BEN: And what might you base that theory on, John?
LOCKE: Because if you were telling the truth, your hand wouldn't be shaking.
[Ben steadies the glass in his hand, which is shaking.]

In the Wizard of Oz, the characters are told not to pay any attention to the man behind the curtain (the Wizard) but when Toto pulls the curtain, it reveals the truth. Dorothy, Lion, Tin Man and the Scarce Crow to no pay attention to the man behind the certain because the man behind the certain is the Wizard of Oz and he has no magical powers so when the dog pulls the certain Dorothy and her friends see that the Wizard uses machines, sounds and stuff to create a strong and powerful illusion.

The urban dictionary states:
"the man behind the curtain":
A phrase used to describe someone who is in the background secretly plotting and conspiring or also a hypocrite of great proportions.

The land of Oz is depicted as real (fantasy place) in the books, unlike the 1939 movie, which presented it as a dream of Dorothy's. Dorothy and Toto are swept away by a tornado to the Land of Oz and, much like Alice’s Wonderland adventures,  they enter an alternative world filled with talking creatures. With so many references to Oz and Alice, there can only be two premise alternatives: one being a dream of a central character (like Jack) or the characters were swept away into a alternative, spirit world while either living their lives or entering their deaths.

Or was the real man behind the curtain Christian Shepard? His body was never found in the casket in either the island world or the sideways world (which could mean his state of death was the bridge between the two places). Why is he the only non-815 survivor at the Church in the End? And how does he allow everyone "to leave, to move on" into the white light, which must symbolize heaven? Was Christian the group's guardian angel? Except on the island, his image was corrupted by MIB. So, is it possible that Christian is not really Jack's father in the end - - - - but an illusion cast upon him by MIB or Jacob?


The light cave being the source of life, death and rebirth for the entire universe.

That a stone cork being dislodged from the light pool would cause the light to disappear
and the island to have an immediate earthquake and destruction to sink into the ocean.
One could argue that the exact opposite would happen if you released any pent-up EM energy stopped by the cork, the island would not suffer any consequences (the Hatch protocol).

Last lines in episodes:

EP 117:

LOCKE: To finish what I started.

[He walks off and leaves Claire alone.]

EP 118:

JACOB: Goodbye, brother. Goodbye.

EP 119:

LOCKE: Because I'm gonna find Desmond, and when I do, he's gonna help me do the one thing that I could never do myself. I'm gonna destroy the island.

EP 120/121:

LOCKE: We've been waiting for you.

New Ideas/Tests of Theories:

MIB plan from the beginning was to kill all the candidates; that is why he scratched them off one by one in his cave. If MIB’s master plan was to destroy the island, why could he not have smoked down into the Light Cave, knock over the cork, and let the island earthquake and sink into the ocean? There was nothing stopping him from doing that, especially after he had Jacob killed. If the candidates were the substitute for Jacob’s guardianship of the island, then why is killing all of them by their own hands necessary to detonate the island?

And if MIB truly wanted to leave, he could have at any time. He was not trapped by the ocean, for he could be immersed in water (as he was at the sub dock by Jack). And why did Jacob say that when the fire containing his ashes would end, so would he? Does that infer that Jacob was also a “smoke monster” and that is the reason for his immortality (that his age was forever fixed at age 42?)

What came first? The chicken or the egg?
It is a classic paradox.
For to have the chicken to come first, one needs to adults to create a fertilized egg.
But for adults to be, they must first be born from an egg.

So what came first, the island world or the sideways world?
The problem with any convention is that TPTB tried to use McGuffins and tropes to answer questions used as dramatic filler as foundational canon which turned into illogical ruins.

For how could the 815 cast “create” the sideways world “to find themselves” in the after life? If the flashbacks and off-island world is to be believed, the cast had no interpersonal bonds before the “crash.” And even after the “crash,” how could they all immediately “create” a new after life world WITHOUT remembering it on the island? If that is what happened, and what happened did really happen, then the only true bridge between the island world and the sideways world is being dead.

The source was called life, death and rebirth. The island could be the place of the light’s death, and the sideways world a place of rebirth. But the sideways world overlap with Kate’s legal problems and the false medical stories (and miracles) shows it was purely a  collective fantasy. So if the sideways world was a collective fantasy, then the island world could have been a collective fantasy adventure.

The sad part of the ending was after the wash of white light from the front doors engulfs the church (which by the way - - - the light came from where Ben was sitting outside the church) the final question was “so what?” 

So what if they reunited in the after life after they died somewhere else?
So what if the “most important people in their lives” excludes most parents and siblings?
So what if the show leaves us pondering what will happen to all the characters next?
So what?, indeed.