Thursday, October 31, 2013


It is still hard to reconcile Season 6 with the previous 5 season.

The sideways parallel story arc was such a diversion that the island events really did not matter.

Renew, release, let go. Yesterday's gone. There's nothing you can do to bring it back. You can't "should've" done something. You can only DO something. Renew yourself. Release that attachment. Today is a new day! — Steve Maraboli

The above life-coach speech is about as close as we can come to trying to figure out what the heck was so important about the sideways purgatory.

Was the island a place where the main characters went to get "renewed?" All of them had personal issues, secrets and personal angst about their lives. None of the characters went to Australia on "vacation," as their were missions to accomplish like Bernard trying to find a Hail Mary cancer cure for Rose, or Boone rescuing Shannon from another bad boyfriend. People get away from it all to relax, re-think their life goals, and recharge their mental batteries. It is supposed to release the build up stress, confusion and anger that dwells inside us all.  But a plane crash and dangerous island is no Club Med.

Was the island a place where the main characters went to "release" something? Initially, they all wanted to go home, be rescued. Then it was a means of survival as a group. But slowly, some like Locke, decided that the island was their new "home" and they did not want to leave. To abandon one's old life for the uncertainty of an island existence is not very logical. It merely shifts the stress, anger and angst from the old life to the new one.

Was the island a place where the main characters went to "let go" of their personal baggage? Apparently not, since Jack was still haunted by the ghost of dead father. He only "resolved" his father issues in the sideways church scene with a simple hug. It was in the sideways world where light bulbs went off in character's heads - - -  to let go of something, to "awaken" to their own mortality.

So the lesson is not clear. How did the island adventures prepare the main characters to accept and acknowledge their own deaths? There was no simple revelation in the sideways fantasy world to show that significant change. In fact, one could argue that the harmony of the sideways world was much better on the main characters egos and mental stability than the island time.  If the sideways world was a more calm and orderly place, was that their true heaven?

When we review the ending of the series, there is no clear message. There is no life-coach takeaway speech. It is just a gathering of people. People who were connected before Flight 815 but in the sideways world not connected at all. What is disturbing in the ending is that none of the characters were upset, shocked or nervous about the fact that their blissful sideways lives were allegedly fake. Considering the complex sideways world was the world which would have happened if the crash did not happen, we assume that all the sideways people lived out this life for many, many years before awakening at the church. All the connections those souls made in the sideways world had no value - - - such as Jack to his son, David. Why was not David at the church with his dad?

It was a matter of convenience not to address these clear concerns. And this is what still bothers many fans of the show. When Season 6 took a U-turn to create the sideways world, the writers needed to clearly explain why they needed to do so in order to wrap up the island adventure. Instead, the island time is completely separate. The sideways story is also completely separate. One did not need the other to exist to tell the story. And once this sideways arc was introduced, should have been a way to better integrate its meaning into the island story arc than fabricating a happy ending.

In researching the post-Season 6 theories, I found one commentator's viewpoint of the series as it reached its halfway point:

LOST is actually a TV show with a simple storyline that becomes increasingly absurdly complex, like a Rube Goldberg machine. The purpose is to suck viewers in with a mysterious plot by never giving away a sensible storyline.

So this is not theory, but a criticism of the show.

Despite the shows allusions to philosophers and religions, LOST actually has the intellectual content of a sitcom, and its success is the result of expensive special effects, competent acting, and well paid writers.

It would be a fallacy to actually have a logical theory or truth to the show, because this is not the point of the show, rather the point is for viewers to trying to find the plot, which is half of the entertainment, but the actual "truth" behind LOST is meaningless.

Perhaps the actual truth is guarded so well because it does not exist because it is so empty.

Think about the episodes. Although the show tries to move fast to avoid it, the fact is, if anyone was trapped in a place with mysterious goings on occurring all the time, the one question people would ask the most is WHY. Why is there a monster, why are we here, why are the others kidnapping us? Unfortunately the question WHY almost never turns up. Instead, in an unrealistic way, characters appear constantly driven in the episodes to respond to various emergencies and events without much thought, as if they have no agency or ability to decide for themselves. Any intelligent person who experienced the island like the characters on the show would observe that it appeared that their actions were futile, because it appeared something else has power over them (the monster, "hallucinations", "sailing in circles") and then would stop performing because they more or less realize their actions are useless, and instead start asking questions such as WHY and refusing to cooperate.

This becomes increasingly absurd as the third season progresses, because now the main characters are in direct contact with the others. A few WHY questions from the characters, "Why are you here, why do you want us, etc," would be the obvious logical thing to say, but this never seems to come up. This is because the premise is so thin that the plot could not withstand any satisfactory answers to a WHY question, and these questions are always avoided.

 It is still a valid criticism of the show. Even Jacob's answer to why he chose his candidates was a hollow throwaway line. And Jacob never stated why the island needed to be protected in the first place. Or how to defeat the smoke monster/MIB. Or why, as an immortal being, he washes his hands of everything. Or why does Ben, of all people, deserve a second chance. Or why most of the people in the sideways church had none of their family members present to help them along in the after life.

Many fans were looking for "how" things were related in the series story lines, but "why" things happened is just as important. Both were not addressed in the end.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Today marks the 75th anniversary of the most famous radio play in the history of American broadcasting.

Orson Welles wrote and produced a radio adaptation of the classic H.G. Wells novel, The War of the Worlds for his Mercury Theatre group.  It was performed as a Halloween episode of the series on October 30, 1938, and aired over the CBS radio network. Directed and narrated by actor and future filmmaker Welles,  the  first two thirds of the 60-minute broadcast were presented as a series of simulated news bulletins,  which suggested to many listeners that an actual Martian alien invasion  was currently in progress. Compounding the issue was the fact that the Mercury Theatre on the Air was a show which ran without commercial breaks, adding to the program's realism. Although there were sensationalist accounts in the press about a supposed panic in response to the broadcast, the precise extent of listener response has been debated over the decades.

In the days following the adaptation, however, there was widespread outrage and panic by certain listeners, who had believed the events described in the program were real. The program's news-bulletin format  was described as cruelly deceptive by some newspapers and public figures, leading to an outcry against the perpetrators of the broadcast. Despite these complaints—or perhaps in part because of them—the episode secured Welles' fame as a dramatist.

Welles used the most modern technology of 1938, and transformed it into a complex fictional illusion which fooled many in the general public. The idea of the power of technology such as radio could mold, control, create fear or panic a community would later be adapted by German propaganda leaders in pre-World War II Europe.

It is not debatable that the Welles broadcast had lasting impact on American culture and in broadcasting. Today, we are surrounded by modern telecommunications and instant access to news and events. We would think it would be hard to fool us by such a Welles broadcast. But that would still be as naive as those radio listeners in 1938.

Radio came into people's homes with a purpose to inform and entertain. It's news format led listeners to believe in what the news reporters were telling them was true, as this was merely an electronic version of their daily newspapers and their motto of truth and accuracy in journalism. It was the exploitation of the familiar format that led to Welles genius to create a believable illusion in reality


The last of this series of reviews of theories prior to Season 6 involves time travel. The theory is that the island was a Time Machine.

Once the writers put the matter of time travel on the table, we as fans had to deal with it.

We were familiar with the general literary rules of time travel: you don't go back in time to kill a parent to create a present paradox; changes events in the past can have unintended consequences in the future, etc.  In H.G. Wells' Time Machine, we know a brilliant scientist created a sled with a dial that when activated would send him to the time coordinates. But the machine did not move in space; it was stationary. Once those caveats were established, the viewer accepted the machine and its abilities.

But LOST's time travel references were more missing puzzle pieces than an actual functional machine.

The clues to the idea of an island time machine were sprinkled throughout the series.

The premise is that Oceanic 815 flew through a rift in the time/space created by the island's unique electromagnetic properties, and are now the passengers are lost somewhere in the past.

Time is an important theme,  making many appearances throughout the show. Flashbacks and Flashforwards show the lives of characters during a different time other than on the Island. The Island is known to have a different concept of time, as it moves at a different pace, as seen in Daniel's experiments. Time travel, both physically and through the conscious are also concepts that have been witnessed in the later seasons.

Time has been a clue mentioned in various context during the show:

Season 1:
Sayid comes to the conclusion that the distress signal has been playing for 16 years. ("Pilot: Part 2")
Would a distress signal really play for sixteen years with no one finding it?
During the discovery of Adam and Eve, Jack claims that they have been dead for 40-50 years. ("House of the Rising Sun")
Sawyer reads A Wrinkle in Time. ("Dues Ex Machina")
Kate and her childhood sweetheart Tom bury a time capsule and open it years later. ("Born to Run")

Season 2:
There is a countdown timer in the Swan station, which is reset every 108 minutes with the numbers. ("Adrift")
Mr. Eko does not talk for 40 days after he killed an Other. ("The Other 48 Days")
Michael meets with captive Walt for three minutes, which is also the name of the episode.
A system failure occurred at 16:16 on September 22nd, the time the plane crashed.

Season 3:
Ben explains to Jack what events have happened off the Island during the 67 days he has been there. ("The Glass Ballerina")
Aldo was reading A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking. ("Not in Portland")
Richard Alpert shows a scan of a womb that Juliet believes is of a 70 year old woman, when in fact she was 20. ("Not in Portland")
Juliet said that she has been on the Island for 3 years, 2 months, and 28 days. ("Not in Portland")
Mittelos is an anagram for "Lost Time". ("Not in Portland").
Desmond relieves part of his life after the Swan imploded. ("Flashes Before Your Eyes")
The clock reads 1:08 in Desmond's flat. ("Flashes Before Your Eyes")
Ms. Hawking has many clocks inside the jewelry store. ("Flashes Before Your Eyes")
Richard appears to not age, after young Ben encountered him in the jungle in the 1970s. ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
Ben looks at his watch when he kills his father in the Purge; the time was 4:00. ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
Ben orders to kill Sayid, Jin, and Bernard while giving Jack a minute to respond. ("Through the Looking Glass")

Season 4:
Daniel does an experiment involving time. He launches a payload from the Kahana, and waits for it to arrive. It eventually arrives, 31 minutes later than what the time is on the Island. ("The Economist")
The perspective of the time it takes for the helicopter to travel from the Island to the Kahana is different from the Island and the Kahana. ("The Constant")
Desmond, Minkowski, and Brandon suffer from their conscious traveling through time without a constant. ("The Constant")
Ray washes ashore on the Island dead, but does not die on the Kahana until a couple of days later. ("The Shape of Things to Come")
The Orchid was built to experiment time travel. Ben turns the wheel underneath the Orchid to move the Island through time. ("There's No Place Like Home: Parts 2 & 3")

Season 5:
Daniel explains that the Island is skipping in time, causing the Island to travel through different time periods erratically. ("Because You Left")

For all the time references in the series, time travel like most things had no rules.

When several characters time skipped to 1977, there were other humans on the island at the same time who did not time skip. There was never an explanation for that different treatment. The same is true when the O6 returned to the island, a few time skipped to the 1970s while Sun was left stranded in the present.

The same inconsistency holds for the change to "mental time skips." If Desmond became a mental time skipper because of the Hatch implosion, then Charlie and Eko who were also in the station would have experienced the same side effects. They did not.

Then, the concept that the freighter crew led by Minkowski only visited the island for a short time, returned to their boat to have sudden and quick mental melt downs because their brains were time skipping makes no sense considering that the 815ers who made it to the freighter had no such symptoms.

The writers did not treat Time as a key element in the story mythology, but as a plot trick to drum up new story arcs. It was not even mentioned by men like Widmore as motivation to get back to the island or to control it because it was a Time Machine. And if it was truly a time machine, when Jack suddenly gained all knowledge of the guardians, would he not have considered using the island's powers to go back and not allow 815 flight path over the island to save all those people (Jack was a healer).

But the problem is that the writers did create two different and conflicting versions of time travel in the series. The physical time travel of people into the past, and the mental brain time skips that Desmond had after the Hatch implosion. Further, a few of Desmond's mental time skips were actually wrong (such as his vision that Claire, holding Aaron, would leave the island in a helicopter.)

A few viewers believed that LOST "jumped the shark" when it introduced the time travel story lines. In retrospect, that may be true. But the writers had the opportunity to make some plausible argument why time travel was an important part of the final season's conclusions, but they did not do so.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


The military used the island to store atomic weapons.
The Dharma construction on the island was a costly, secret science station.
The military style food drops continue even after Dharma was eliminated.
The Widmore conspiracies on the fate of Flight 815 smelled like the cover-up of cover-ups.

This led many to believe before Season 6 that there was a secret or shadow government as a major actor in LOST. Our government funds a wide range of research, development, health, safety, and weapons technologies. All those aspects of research found their way to the island. L.O.S.T. could be code for "Land Of Scientific Testings."

“It’s All a Government Experiment” theory proposes that all the characters have all been brought here for a purpose, and the island is functioning as an elaborate Skinner Box to gauge their reactions. If this were true, some of the inhabitants of the island, probably the Others, know that it is an experiment, because they have information about the castaways and the outside world.

The discovery of the various hatches and the sketchy Dharma Initiative, which is still delivering food to the island, lend credence to this theory. When you look at why the castaways are on the island you will see that each of them has been told to get the flight by someone else or someone else’s influence has had them make that flight. The characters were corralled onto Flight 815.

So how can a government agency "stage" a chaotic mid-air plane crash just to get passengers to the island so they can conduct experiments on them? With the survival of a mid-air break-up nil, the idea of "drugging" the passengers and taking them to the island "sound stage" is more likely. There is precedent for this in the show itself: when Juliet was drugged then put on board a submarine.

The various Dharma stations lend credibility to the theory. The Hatch was a monitoring station for the unique EM energy field. The Pearl was a place where psychological experiments were conducted on people. There was a medical research facility where electromagnetic activity on the island may have studied as a was the cure of Jin's infertility, Rose's cancer and Locke's paralysis.

Theorists explain that in Season 3's opening episode, with the bear cages, it is hard to argue that there is not an experiment going on there. Perhaps, the project began as experimental research on animals, but when the plane crashed the islanders were finally able to have access to research subjects that would model humans better than anything else- actual humans. They may have had sporadic subjects prior to this (Henry Gale, Desmond, etc) who seem also possible subjects. The  Dharma Initiative would have been the private contractor running the experiments. But then again, perhaps one experiment was how two different cultures, such as science and faith (the Others), would interact in a confined space (a litmus test for the Middle East perhaps).

Inman's involvement might also support this theory. When he was in Iraq with the US Marines, he tells Sayid his torturing skills will be useful later. He would later wind up on the island in the Hatch with Desmond.  He was the last person on the island with Desmond, and he may have carefully orchestrated the cover story of the "fake" 815 plane crash so Desmond could convince the survivors that rescue was never an option.

The series could center around experiments involving the Numbers, representative of
The Valenzetti Equation which predicts the exact number of years and months until humanity extinguishes itself.

During this Season 3 time frame, magazine interviews determined that  most of the LOST actors personally thought this was the premise to the show. Harold Perrineau Jr. said, "I'd always believed the whole government conspiracy thing was great and then I heard that was the boring choice, but I thought it was really cool. But that's been my favorite one so far."

If each person was handpicked to be on the island, that’s a whole lot of planning and coincidence. If, however, each person is there by chance, the theory may hold even more weight.

What do many government funded secret projects have in common? National defense. New technologies from making better soldiers to new weapons systems. Examples of high tech include the sonic fence, the smoke monster, and even the submarine (how many private companies have submarines?)

The experiment could have been as simple as trying to determine if soldiers (Sayid) and criminals (Kate, Sawyer) could re-establish themselves in society; whether they can turn back their own selfish standards to help a group meet certain goals.  It also could have been a ruse to send "dead" people through a dangerous experiment, such as the island as a time machine.

We saw that most of the research stations were closed or not functioning when 815 crashed on the island. However, that does not mean that the experiments stopped. Ben was still getting orders from a man called Jacob, his superior. Ben demanded lists, reports, information from his subordinates. He gave out deadlines. He demanded results. If the Dharma scientists were gone, why would Ben still be conducting research? The assumption is that the research never stopped.

But in the grand scheme of things, a government controlled island of human experiments did not give us any concrete results. What were the goals of the experiments? What were the results? Why were the main characters part of the experiment? If the main characters did not change their personal behavior, were the experiments a failure?

Monday, October 28, 2013


This is still a popular theory/explanation for LOST: Dreams.

The whole show was an elaborate dream in the mind of one character.

The most likely candidate to be the series Dreamer would be Hurley. He had mental issues. He was a loner. He liked fantasy elements such as comic books and Star Wars. During the early seasons, ABC requested script changes because the story line was getting too clear that it was all in Hurley's head. It was around the time of the "Dave" episode, where Hurley had a "real" imaginary friend who tried to get Hurley to change, to rebel, to escape from the mental hospital. Later on, Dave re-appears on the island to try to convince Hurley that nothing he is experiencing is real; the island is fake; everything happening to him is a false - - - he is still back at the mental hospital. Dave tries to convince Hurley that he is dreaming by trying to convince him to jump off a cliff. Hurley is just about ready to jump, when Libby stops him.

Now, we learned that Libby was also a mental patient in the same day room as Hurley. However, on the island, Hurley never recognizes her. This is very strange considering that Hurley is extroverted when he is in  the hospital. He feels safe and secure at Santa Rosa. This allows him to relax and let his mind wander. Why Libby does not introduce herself to Hurley as a fellow patient is mysterious. Does she have an ulterior motive to keep Hurley "on" the island? Is she a devil on one shoulder whispering in Hurley's head while Dave is on the other shoulder?

But even if Hurley was shy around women, he would have still known about Libby at Santa Rosa because the day room was small and open. And because of that fact, Libby would have been a memory, a character, in Hurley's own mind.

And Hurley's mind contains more fantasy than educational science. It appears that Hurley never went beyond high school. He was in dead end fast food career path. This would explain the "sci-fi" nature of the LOST universe, its inconsistent theories and scientific applications, because the source material is found inside Hurley's limited knowledge bank.

Hurley could have won the lottery in real life. He could have had the curse of the Numbers. He could have gone to Australia for answers. And when he got onto Flight 815 after his long trip, he would have seen all the passengers in their seats. It would have been stored in his short term memory. He had been reading a comic book about a polar bear on a tropical island. That also would have been stored in his short term memory. And when Hurley fell asleep during the long flight, he would use those elements to construct a fantasy tale about the island and his fellow passengers.

How can one cram six years of events into a 15 hour flight from Sydney to LA? It is easy because when a person dreams (REM sleep), a six minute dream may seem to last for hours. It is compressed imagery that the mind can process faster than in real life. But how can a person control his dreams to make complex stories? Researchers have found that some people can "set up" or manage their dreams by creating various stories, with or without themselves as main components. Other dreamers let their mind wander so they can experience new things or nightmares. Dream researchers believe that sleep is an important component to brain and human body functions. The rest period allows the physical body to recover from a day's work. The brain also needs time to "reboot" and organize itself. Many areas of the brain have less activity during sleep, while the creative side has an increase in activity.

Also, researchers believe that dreams play an important role in people's lives. Some believe that dreams help a person understand themselves. The dreams can be symbolic problem solving, taking real world issues and run various "solutions" that a person could remember and use in the future.

So it is possible that a person with an active imagination could dream a complex action-adventure in his sleep. And the clues that Hurley was being guided by Dave to free himself from the mental institution grasp parallel the grasp that the island had on him. Remember, Hurley is the last person on the island standing when the series ends. As such, Hurley could be considered the real man behind the curtain.

But that would be countered by the fact that the story ended in the sideways church, with Jack as the focal point. But, we do not know whether it was truly real. It could have been a reunion of Hurley's "imaginary friends" just as much as real friends.

There is a corollary to the Dream theory.  I once proposed that it was not one person's dream, but a "collective, interactive" dream with all the 815 passengers. It would have been caused by the plane flying over the unique electromagnetic energy of the island, which could have altered the dream patterns of the sleeping passengers (since the human brain uses neurons and electric pulses to function). Under this theory, a person "dies" on the island (dream state) when he or she wakes up and is no longer connected to group. This also follows the unexplained concept of "awakening" in the sideways world. Awaken from what? People only awake from sleep - - - deep sleep or even day dreams where your subconscious takes over from your conscious state.

Then there is a third dream theory which seems strange. Instead of the whole story being in the mind of Hurley, it was all in the mind of the one survivor of the plane crash, Vincent. Vincent was the first "character" to move the story line forward in the pilot, and he was the last actor moving into position at the end.

Researchers believe that some animals do have dreams. Most land mammals experience the Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep where dreams mainly occur, but since they don’t keep dream journals, scientists tested rats to see what was going on in their brains when they slept. According to a 2001 report, MIT researchers Daniel Bedore and Matt Wilson placed trained rats on a track and monitored their brain activity while they moved towards their edible reward. They then monitored the rats’ brain activity while they were in a REM cycle. After examining the data, they saw that some activity in a sleeping rat’s brain matched some of its waking activity. The identical patterns led the scientists to believe that not only were the rats dreaming, they were dreaming about running on the track.
Dr. Stanley Coren, a psychology professor and neuropsychological researcher, writes in his book How Dogs Think: Understanding the Canine Mind, that dogs also dream. Like rats, dogs dream about common scenes they have experienced in their waking lives. Dr. Coren also notes that the smaller a dog is, the more it will dream: a small dog, such as a toy poodle, may dream once every ten minutes, while a dog as large as a mastiff or an Irish wolfhound may spend an hour and a half between each dream.

So, Vincent's laying down next to Jack at the end may have actually been the beginning after Vincent had surveyed the debris. Man's best friend trying to keep the dead passengers alive, at least in spirit.

Sunday, October 27, 2013


The producers were adamant that the characters were not dead, they were not in purgatory, and that the events on the island were real. That is what they said outside the context of the actual show. They never explained within the show those alleged facts. They have only painted a large canvas with gray mud.

But many people believed that the characters "Had to Be on the Island for a Reason."  Otherwise, what would be the point.

Supporters of this point of view try to connect the pre-island dots or interactions between the characters. Their conclusion is that all the survivors were fated, as John Locke has said, to be on the Flight 815, and to end up on the island. In other words, the island chose them to do something important.

No one has pieced together The Six Separations of Jack Shepherd but it would probably not be too difficult. Those with connections to Jack through his father included Ana Lucia as Christian's bodyguard and Sawyer as Christian's drinking buddy. The pre-island connections between castaways keep adding up. And incidents like Claire’s psychic convincing her to take the fatal flight (and playing a part in Eko getting on), Hurley making the flight despite all odds, Jack talking his way (or, his dad's body's way) on board and Sawyer getting deported lend a lot of support. But then again, it gets weak with characters like Sayid who had no connections to the US until he was deported from Australia after a botched CIA mission against his childhood friend.

The strong assumption is that every character we see seems to have had a reason for being on Flight 815 instead of other flights. But the reason why everyone had to be on the island was never stated to us.

First, we were led to believe that this was a mere survival story. "Lie together or die alone."
Then, we were led to believe that this was a rescue story with Michael's raft.
Then, we were led to believe that this was a story of conflict between the survivors and the Others, who claimed the island for themselves.
Then, we were led to believe that this was a story about human redemption in the face of cruel behavior, manipulation, threats and pain such as the conflicted decision of Jack to sacrifice himself to save others in exchange to heal Ben's condition.
Then, we were led to believe that the characters were needed to save the island from destruction, especially when it began to time skip.
Finally, we were led to believe that the characters were needed to save the world from MIB escaping the island.

Looking back,  the main characters never really accomplished any of those story lines. The characters ran around the island like rats in a laboratory maze. Any accomplishments were minor and short lived. Some leaders became followers, some followers became leaders, and many ended up as mere pawns.

The producers had said "there’s a rational, scientific explanation for everything that’s happened so far," was received with a lot of skepticism when the story lines turned toward new themes such as the faith and mysticism. The reason why the characters had to be on the island is still unknown. Statements such as to "fulfill their destiny" or "redeem themselves" don't make sense in the isolation of the island. The main characters on the island did not change their behavior much. Sayid came to the island as a torturer and died a tortured man. Kate came to the island as a escapee and escaped the island as a runaway from responsibility.

Evangeline Lilly once said, "Lost is a very big metaphor for every single character's mental state of being, psychological, and emotional state of being and we're on this island to be mentally, psychologically, and emotionally found. We were all chosen specifically because we will facilitate that for one another."

If the reason the characters were brought together for "group therapy," I think that reasoning would irk fans more than the purgatory theory.

Reason is a cause, explanation, or justification for an action or event. There has to be good or obvious cause to do something: to survive, to get rescued, to work together to make a new society. The last season did not give our characters any reason to fight for or against Jacob and MIB. There was no goal or tangible reward for any character that was directly related to defeating MIB.

No logical presumptions support LOST's final conclusion. There needs to be a close connection between reason and emotion; what is right, practical, or possible.  Common sense dictates that we think, understand, and then form judgments by a process of analysis entirely from facts. The fact is that we still do not know what MIB/Flocke is/was. We still do not know why MIB could be "killed" when he was never human in the first place. And the finale "gotcha!" moment with Kate shooting MIB and Jack kicking him over the cliff did not resolve any emotional attachment between Jack and Kate. She left him to die alone.

Saturday, October 26, 2013


A lesser known theory about LOST was we could call today "Children at Play."

It is based upon fragmentary observations throughout the series about how children were used and perceived in the story lines. Overall, children were not well received or well established. Which was very odd considering one the key mid-point story lines centered around the infertility problem.

After the plane crash, there are only four new children to the island: Emma and Zach in the tail section group and Walt with unborn Aaron with Claire on the main beach camp. Of these four children, only Walt, the eldest, was called "special." He was the only one allowed to voluntarily leave the island.

Juliet was manipulated, coerced, kidnapped and taken to the island because she was a fertility expert. She had miraculously given her cancer patient sister a chance to conceive and give birth. Ben seemed to be obsessed with this problem, even though Alpert would remark to Locke that this was a waste of time and not part of the Others mission.

 But one of the shortest and most disturbing scenes from the tail section arc was the adult survivors hiding in fear in the brush when a group of ill-clad, bare foot  "Others" walked by who looked like a band of children. This led me to speculate that there actually could be two sets of Others - - - an adult band and a splinter tribe of children. This could be the reason why the adult Others like Ben were obsessed in finding a new source of children.

A band of children roaming the island brings to mind the classic story of The Lord of the Flies. That story has several similar themes to LOST, including power struggles, corruption, greed and the collapse of a loose island society.

But how the adults on the island acted was also very childlike. Locke had the naivety of a small child when he interacted with others in his group. Ben had the petty anger of a school yard bully. The love triangle story between Jack-Kate-Sawyer was very high school soap opera.

By the end of Season 5, we still did not know who were The Others, the original inhabitants of the island. We did not know if they had any real purpose except to kill off strangers on their island. But the Others had two factions: the post-Dharma Ben group who embraced the technology brought to the island, and the Alpert group who lived in nomadic tents in the fields. Again, it appears to be two school clicks.

The question raised is why if children were so important in the mission statement of the Others, why were they treated so badly by the Others. One reason could be that children treat other children badly because of their own immaturity.

Which leads to the premise that despite appearances, the island is made up of children "playing" castaway survivor. The clues are the common behaviors: in-fighting, control, temper, tantrums, and playing games. The original island inhabitants, being children, never wanted any more children to ruin their island. And when they mentally grew into young adults, and their attitude towards their themselves began to change, they were eliminated by rebellious children.

But how can children look like adults? That could be answered by the fact that the island's unique magnetic properties coupled with its time distortions could physically age children into bodies of adults, but their mental intelligence would lag far behind in development. 

One could look at it that Dharma represented the parental figures on the island while the Others were the wild, undisciplined children. Such symbolism would be in step with a major theme of the series: the daddy issues that many of the main characters had in their own backgrounds.

The structure of the series had the feel of kids in the backyard. There was a whole past generation of children who played outdoors instead of becoming video TV couch potatoes. Kids used to play with other kids in games like War, combat, capture the flag, baseball, football  - - -  using both imagination and athletic strength.  The island would be a wonderful playground for imaginative children.

It would explain all the inconsistencies in science and story continuity during the series. Children may have no knowledge how the real world or real science works. But their imagination can conjure up anything to "fix" a situation or opponent like the sonic fence, or the creation of the smoke monster. The island would give the children supernatural abilities to act out their own fantasies as adults. It may be why a few children, like Emma and Zach, did not want to play with the others. There are always wallflowers, loners and quiet children in the background of any group.

So how did all these children arrive at the island? If we look to the final season for a clue, we would find that they were probably kidnapped or captured by the island guardian. And what would happen to lost children over time? Children without guidance will have self-doubts about their worth. They would sting with rejection. They would "fight, destroy and corrupt." And this cycle appeared to last for centuries.

The one thing that this theory has that may help explain the sideways church reunion, where the souls reunited after people died long before and long after Jack, was nostalgia. If life is a full circle, the adult in most people find nostalgic memories of their childhood in their advanced old age. Why these good memories surface in elderly patients is not known. But many adults regret that the vast majority of their lives were spent working hard, problem solving, juggling financial and family issues to the point of simple romantic notion of the freedom and carefree times spent as children with their friends. If the main characters were in fact children, in a fantasy world of their own creation, they possibly could reunite in the after life if those innocent times were the best memories of their lives.

Friday, October 25, 2013


In the next examination of the popular theories prior to Season 6, a lesser viewed notion that the series was about the Island as a mothership.

This theory ties in with the deep American notion that the Rosewell UFO story was true. And plays into the conspiracy theories that surround most government dark projects.

This theory speculates that the island is not an island. We know that the island does not act like a Pacific land mass: it moves, it cannot be seen from the air, it can disappear without displacing a gallon of ocean water, it moves through both time and space at different rates than Earth.

It was called a "snow globe" by Desmond because those on the island could not go through its outer invisible barrier.

Further, the high tech science experiments conducted on the island further bolstered the notion that the supernatural elements inferred that a supernatural race of beings were controlling everything from behind the curtain. In Star Trek, the episode called "The Cage" explored a superior intellectual race viewing human behavior by capturing several star ship crew members to observe human behavior. Likewise, some speculate that the "coincidence" that all the 815 passengers had past connections and/or common personal issues too good to be not forced together by a third party.

As a result, the main characters were “Abducted by Aliens.” The island is not part of Earth. It could be cloaked in a stealth mode between our time and the alien's time.  The survivors may no longer on Planet Earth, as the island is a space ship that re-creates Earth like a holodeck, so the aliens can take back these human beings as examples for further experimentation, or be part of an alien collection such as a zoo exhibit.

The smoke monster, as a high tech alien security system to keep the exhibit pieces on the island, is an explanation for the strange events on the island. It would appear that all the Dharma stations could have been set up to keep the human captives "busy" and pre-occupied so they don't realize that they have left their own solar system.

Early in the series run, Damon Lindelof shot down this theory.  “There are no spaceships. There isn't any time travel,” he told However, he also indicated that there was no purgatory, but the cast wound up in purgatory in the end. The series also featured both mental and physical time travel by various characters. The showrunners have always been inconsistent with their defense of the series against fan speculation to the point of being obstructionist. Again, there would have been nothing wrong with a premise that the 815 survivors were "captured" by aliens as the plane was about to crash into the ocean and teleported to their island cage for human behavioral experimentation. In fact, such a premise would actually lead the characters to rebel against a "real" foe instead of the illusory Jacob-MIB stand-off.

Thursday, October 24, 2013


In the next installment of popular pre-Season 6 theories includes the collective notion that the characters have fallen by accident into a time rift.

There are many clues which supported this theory: the fact the island's time was different than the freighter's; that the light refracted differently on the island than on the sea; that the rocket experiment showed a major difference in both space and time (as the results indicated that the island was moving away from the freighter, perhaps going faster than the rotation of the earth because of a time shift); that several characters began to time skip while on the island; that Ben traveled off the island by turning the FDW but to arrive at a different date in the Arab desert; and that the island was "difficult" or impossible to find.

A few commentators tried to establish a purpose for this Earth bound time anomaly.  Why was the island so important that powerful men would kill in order to control it? And why was the military and science community (Dharma) so eager to set up stations on the island?

When viewers realized that the Numbers may represent the The Valenzetti Equation which is the mathematical equation developed by the reclusive Princeton University mathematician Enzo Valenzetti.  It was created following the Cuban Missile Crisis by the United States and the Soviet Union to find a solution to the hostility and danger of imminent global disaster created by the Cold War. The equation was secretly commissioned through the UN Security Council and is used to predict the time of human extinction.

According to the 1975 orientation film,  the Valenzetti Equation "predicts the exact number of years and months until humanity extinguishes itself."

Some propose that the island was the receiver for messages from mankind's future. The island had to straddle the time continuum of the present and the future in order to send/receive information.

As such, some speculate that some major disaster has happened in the future, and those in the future have managed to alert some people in the past by sending messages back in an attempt to prevent it. These futurists were attempting to alter the island present in tiny ways hoping that it will cause a chain reaction that will eventually lead to the prevention of the disaster. The theory believes that everyone on the island has a part, big or small, to play in eventually stopping this future disaster.

Because the island has a strange magnetic field,  futurists are able to focus their messages to the island so they can be understood by a less advanced human race. As such, they may have used symbolic meaning for complex subject matter, which may have led to a series strange things happening, such as the creation of the smoke monster from the messages or memories of those human receivers in the past.  The power to hear what could only be perceived as messages from the heavens may have been  discovered by Dharma, or possibly the original Others.

To some these future messages are just images, random things like the numbers appearing on objects. Other people can understand the messages better, such as the Others on the Island and possibly those on Jacob's  List. To the chosen ones,  the messages may be clearer. The chosen ones may be in a position to decode the messages in order to the disaster.

Ramping up to Season 6,  the issue of past and present and time have become quite important, especially with Desmond's developing story arc of having time flashes into the future.  Sub-conscious messages from the future could also explain how certain characters and supporting characters seem to know what is going to happen, or why everyone in the show appears to be some how connected.

The future disaster may have  something to do with fertility. The Others have always seemed interested in children, especially Claire's baby. In Season 3,  we were shown a scan of a 27 year old woman with the womb of a 70 year old.

The Others keep saying they are "the good guys," which could mean that they God's chosen people to receive his messages to save mankind. They at least believe that they are doing good work. The List they have might be warning about who is useful in preventing the disaster, or who might cause the disaster. It opens the spiritual context to the show.

The concept that LOST could have been centered around alien messages (as opposed to aliens themselves) is a good sci-fi basis in which to develop a complex story line. However, we are never told what the future "disaster" is that our heroes need to prevent. No one in the series explains to us the messages other than the vague excuse "this is what Jacob wants."  We will learn that the immortal Jacob is the island's guardian, but he does not divulge anything about the future to the island inhabitants. He is only concerned about finding his successor. It is sort of like a lonely light house keeper trying to trick another individual to take his place on a cold rock so he could escape his island prison. It may be noble work; but it is not rewarding to the light house keeper.

If the future messages were sent to create change for the planet, none of the main characters had the ability to make any global impact. Yes, a few were wealthy like Sun or Widmore, but they did not show any humanitarian purpose in their actions surrounding the island. And as Season 6 would unfold, the time angle of the series became moot. There was no great cry to save the human race from destruction. It was a temperate plea not to let Flocke escape the island, for some unexplained reason. Even if Flocke represented the devil who would be unleashed on mankind, there was plenty of back story evil in the world that that event would not make much of a difference one way or the other.

It is clear this sci-fi theory did have roots in the early plot lines of the series, but in the end science fiction was cast to the curb and not a factor in the main characters personal story endings.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


For the next few posts, we will review the popular theories that the LOST community thought were important as the final season was about to begin for our island castaways.

The first, and probably least popular theory was Purgatory.

The barrier to acceptance of the theory by a vast majority of viewers was a) the people looked alive and so they survived the plane crash; b) they were alive because people "died" on the island; and c) viewers wanted to vicariously "live" through their favorite characters.

This fourth wall in television may have led to some viewer confusion and bitterness when the series ended in the sideways world church.

The purgatory theme was what many people immediately thought of when the pilot episode ended. It was based upon several critical observations. First, it was highly unlikely that the passengers would have survived a plane break up at 35,000 feet. Second, there were inconsistent injury patterns such as the lack of broken bones on impact. Third, the plane's engine which was disconnected from its wing (and fuel) source continued to run. Fourth, John Locke miraculously could walk again. Fifth, Rose's cancer pain was cured. One can only release the physical pain and constrictions of injury or disease in the after life.

Further clues include the dramatic demise of passenger Gary Troup who was sucked into the mysterious still active jet turbine. His name was an anagram for "purgatory."

Throughout the series, there were many clues that the main characters were actually dead. When Naomi arrived on the island and was told that the survivors of Flight 815 were present, she was in shock. She told them they found the plane wreckage, and they were "all dead."

Purgatory, which is a different realm than life on earth, would explain why women cannot give birth to children conceived on the island.

Further, the appearance of the smoke monster, a dark nebulous mass of evil, is a statement on where the characters are located, in an after life state.

Also in the episode “The Brig” when Sawyer asks John’s father, Anthony Cooper, how he got to the island, he explains that he was in a car accident and the next thing he knew, he was tied to a chair and gagged and looking at his “dead son," John Locke. Sawyer asks if he thought Locke was dead because he threw him out of a window and Cooper replies: “He’s dead because a plane he was flying on crashed in the Pacific.” Sawyer doesn’t believe him, then Cooper says: “If this isn’t hell, friend…then where are we?”

In “A Man Behind The Curtain”, there are a few things that support the purgatory theory. One is when Young Ben sees his mother, who died when he was born, on the island. Another is that when we see Richard in Ben’s flashbacks, he appears to be the same age. We would learn that Richard crashed on the island, was attacked by the smoke monster and became "immortal" which could be a synonym for "dead."  Also, Jack sees his dead father and Kate sees her dead horse on the island.

Many people do not believe that the sideways world was "confirmation" of the island purgatory. They point to the position that people left the island and returned to their old pre-crash lives. However, as the clue in the marina stated, all the post-island events could have been illusions. Besides, it is clear that the sideways world ALL of the characters were dead. When they all died is open to interpretation.

In the the purgatory theory, everyone on the island is actually dead and their actions on the “island” determine where they end up: heaven or hell. In order to help in the "soul sorting" process, people on the island have a serious set of common issues in which they have to figure out both alone and in the group dynamic. The island gives the souls a proving ground for redemption.  Now, some religious students disagree that the island would function as a purgatory since teachings indicate souls in leave Purgatory will leave for  heaven - no one in Purgatory goes to hell it is a period of purgation of sin before facing God not an in between place with an option for heaven or hell.

But in the context that the sideways church represents all facets of religions, there is a hybrid or literary reasoning behind the purgatory theory.

In Dante Alighieri's, The Divine Comedy, the author describes heaven (paradiso), hell (the inferno), and purgatory (purgatorio). He provides a diagram of purgatory. The first thing you enter when you come to purgatory is called "The Island." Perhaps this is where the survivors are. The ones who have died (Boone, Shannon, etc.) have moved on to the other levels of purgatory after being "purified" on the Island. Dante had to wash the stains of hell from his face and the film of hell's vapors form his eyes. This could be all of the bad things that the survivors have done. It seemed that whenever a character had redeemed themselves, they "died." This could have been because they had cleansed themselves and were moving on to the next level.

For example, according to Dante, greedy people go to the fifth terrace of purgatory where they are forced to lay face down on the ground and are unable to move. Nikki & Paulo (done in by their own greed) end up being buried alive while paralyzed.

So it is possible to view the Island has a series of hellish levels of post-life existence for the main characters to traverse (which is similar to the ancient Egyptian ritual writings that a soul must pass through a dangerous journey in the underworld in order to be judged then reach paradise.)

Many people, including the writers and producers of the show, are adamant that the show was not set in purgatory. But where did the show actually end up in the Finale?  There is nothing to say that when the characters "died" on the island, they were "created" in the sideways holding realm until their souls could work out their moral issues and "remember" their own demise and judgment.

There is also no rule against having a show about souls running the gauntlet of the underworld seeking personal salvation. See, Dante's master work above. But since TPTB said this was not purgatory after Season 1, people believed them. But the entire show was about lies, deceit, betrayal, misdirection and mistrust. Why believe the TPTB who had a vested interest in keeping the audience for Season 2?

Based upon the show's ending, the purgatory theory continues to be the most plausible explanation for the supernatural elements of the island events and location.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


One of the oddities of the series was a clue masking itself as a possible explanation of mysterious events on the island. Nothing was more disconcerting than the "constants" idea expressed through Faraday and Desmond.

Because of the island's "unique" properties, visitors could experience "time jumps," but may not realize it for one reason or another. These time jumps are not substitutes for the narrative "flashbacks," which gave us characters remembering past events, but they are really experiencing conciousness-time jumps that we may not aware of. Desmond was our portal into this mental event horizon. However, we did not see any of the other main characters inflicted with such side effects even though they were exposed to the same radiation implosion (especially Charlie and Eko). the speculation is that the Island somehow wants to keep island characters alive,  they would need some sort of constant to keep them from dying.

The unexplained psychic link between two people somehow "protected" them from leaving the island. We were told that each person leaving the Island was exposed to radiation/magnetism that will face a "time distortion" like that of Minkowski, Desmond, Brandon and Daniel.  Without a "constant," another person with whom one has a strong bond,  the person leaving the island will have adverse side effects.

But this plot "danger" was applied in a random and inconsistent pattern. Sayid left the island and he did not experience any time distortion. Some remark that Sayid must not have experienced as much radiation as Desmond did; except that is not true because Minkowski only "sneaked" onto the island from the freighter for a short time period when he succumbed to the island effect upon his return. If  there is a "natural" island law about radiation effects on humans, not all the people on the island or attempting to leave the island experienced time distortion or require a constant.

What was the "cure" to stop the deadly affects of the island radiation?

In an uneven way, Faraday explained that a person needed to have a strong "constant" in the other time plane in order to avoid one's head from exploding was to have a strong personal connection. A constant may be a person in both the current time and the "jump-time" to who the time-traveler can connect. It seemed to mean that one had to make a paranormal telephone connection to the other person's mind in order to save your own. However, in reality, everyone has a strong personal connection with their family, friends, relatives or co-workers so there is no reason why Minkowski or Brandon died as a result of not having a constant in their lives. Likewise, Faraday did not Desmond as a constant because he had his mother, Eloise, who actually understood what was going on in island time.

The writers may have thought putting random secondary characters in main character flashbacks would help symbolize those connections. It may have been an attempt to group of people who have been  intertwined by fate. However, if the constant has to be someone the individual cares deeply about, there were not very many flashbacks in which characters share an important relationship that would enable them to use each other as constants. It is more likely that the significant reason characters appear in each others flashbacks is that their destinies are intertwined and related because Jacob is merely shuffling his lighthouse candidate cards on whom he wants to bring to the island.

But then, the effects of the radiation time shift made no sense when Charlotte returned to the island. She had no effects off-island. She died of the effects while on the island. There was no explanation for this reverse effect except to provide anguished drama for Faraday to overcome.

The last speculation is that a constant is not a person, it could be a place. Locke's constant was the Island. But that again, makes no sense. When Locke left the island, he suffered none of the brain bleeding that Charlotte or Minkowski had to endure. What Locke lost was the use of his legs, a condition that he had prior to coming to the island.

But what is a "constant?"

As an adjective, it means a occurring continuously over a period of time, such as the pain is constant.

It also could mean a situation or state of affairs that does not change. In mathematics, a quantity or parameter that does not change its value whatever the value of the variables, under a given set of conditions. In physics, a number expressing a relation or property that remains the same in all circumstances, or for the same substance under the same conditions.

Applying the book definition to the theory does not give us a real explanation other than more speculation as to the cause and effect of the island time jumps. For example, since Desmond had pined for Penny before he even got to the island, there was nothing on the island that would have changed his strong feelings for her. If Penny was Desmond's constant (a relationship that would not change under all circumstances), then Desmond should not have had any time jump symptoms.

This is another case of the writers throwing the viewers a plot curve ball without figuring out its inconsistent consequences. But, despite the focus of this dangerous condition in the Faraday and Desmond story arcs, it made no difference in the sideways world ending.

Monday, October 21, 2013


There have been several recent national columnists treading carefully around the notion that the current American culture is melting into a society of whiners and victims.  A nation filled with whiners with little sense of responsibility or moral center is a festering boil. Commentators remark that  being seen as a victim can be useful or even profitable.  A person could claim the "moral high ground" by claiming the world, institutions, community or government is being unfair to him. Some people want to help you like lawyers, community activists and politicians who brag that they force others to help you.

It seems strange that a country and continent founded upon the independence of people leaving Europe to take a huge life or death risk coming to  America are the exact opposite of the people who today play the victim card. Prior to government programs to help people, people had to make it on their own, use their grit, determination, skills to  overcome obstacles which led to prosperity and happy lives.

The LOST characters played their own "victim" cards but in a more sublime way.

Sayid began his island stay as pulling away from the main group. He blamed his upbringing and his years as a soldier to become anti-social. He knew others around him had bias against him because of his skin color, nationality and skills. He never allowed himself not to be controlled by authoritative figures. He kept believing his was a victim in his tragic relationship with his true love, Nadia.

Locke's tormented life branded him a victim at an early age. He had no parents. He was shuffled off from foster home to foster home. He was treated different because he had no family. He tried to rebel against how other people perceived him, but he really wasn't good at anything. He accepted his dead end lifestyle. He never grew up; he remained naive. So naive, that he was truly victimized by his own father who stole a kidney from him; and then later crippled him by pushing him out of a 8 story window.

Kate also played a victim role in order to manipulate people around her. She was the smiling tomboy as a child who was eager to get into trouble in order to get attention, especially from her mother. Her working mother did not put Kate into the Norman Rockwell family setting, so she felt hurt by her mother's need to work. When she blew up her (step)father, she claimed she did it to free her mother from abuse (a victim saving another victim), but her mother rejected that position and demanded Kate accept responsibility for her actions. But like most victims, Kate could never accept that - - - so she ran away.

Jack was a victim of his own success. As a boy, he wanted his father's acknowledgement and approval. He worked hard to become his father's equal. He became a miracle worker spinal surgeon, but still did not garner his father's respect. And when he found out that his drunken father killed a patient on the OR table, Jack was part of the cover-up. Then in a moment of conscious, he betrayed his father and told the truth (in essence becoming the victim in the family lie). With his relationship torn a part, Jack spiraled into the darkness of drug and alcohol addiction - - - a self imposed victimization.

Sawyer was also a victim as a child. His father killed his mother in a murder-suicide. That left Sawyer without a family. He was the innocent victim of a con-man's consequences. So, he vowed to avenge his family, but by doing so he turned his own situation to find victims of his own anger, greed, deceit and criminal behavior. He went from victim to victimizer.

Ben was also an anti-social personality whose core was developed by the victimization by his father. Ben's father blamed Ben daily for his mother's death during premature child birth. Ben was constantly mentally abused by the fact his father did not care for the young boy who killed the woman he had loved. As a result, Ben had no normal upbringing; he had difficulty relating to other people or authority. Like Sawyer, he turned his own plight into darkness - - - the person who enjoyed making victims of other people.

None of the characters in the series who had these victim cards ever really kept to terms with their inner demons that caused their victim status. Many used their internal victim belief as a crutch to explain the bad things that would happen to them. Perhaps that is why there was no overreaching moral tone to the series since it was focused upon so many self-absorbed victims that the good or evil environment was immaterial in how they perceived themselves on the island.

Sunday, October 20, 2013


A recent American study concluded  that as many as 73 percent of people surveyed say they are “making do” in their relationship because their true love got away.

It appears people settle for many reasons, including fear of being alone or wanting security and comfort with any other person.  17 percent of respondents said they met their soul mates when it was too late — after they were already paired-off or married.

So many respondents freely admitted that they are "making the best of it" with their current partner. The response is "it's better to be with somebody than nobody."  It seems that settling into a relationship is more important than the relationship itself.

Most of the respondents said that are content with their relationship, but  46 percent say they’d leave their spouse or partner to be with their true love. However, experts warn that the grass make look greener, but there are no guarantees that a past true love will be unrequited in the end.

A clinical psychologists believe the couples are focusing on what they have–not what might have been–might not be the best idea. Once people make an investment in another person, there are ways of making things better so that is why a majority stay.

Loneliness is the driving force that puts people together, for better or worse.

In LOST, it may help explain why so many "wrong" people wound up with each other. People are still head scratching why Sayid wound up with Shannon when he pined for decades over Nadia in both realms. The same is true for even Sawyer, who wound up with Juliet, instead of the woman who fathered his child. And it would seem by process of elimination, Jack settled for Kate, or vice versa since most people believe Kate was more enamored with Sawyer (physically, mentally and personality wise).

The concept that a vast majority of couples never live with their "soul mates" is a sad commentary on modern society. Perhaps, it is generational as the happiest couple in LOST was Rose and Bernard, who found each other late in their lives.

Saturday, October 19, 2013


I concluded watching a French miniseries that had many of the same elements of LOST: supernatural, stone glyphs, murder, greed, legends, dark secrets, extortion, blackmail, love triangles, betrayals, lies, revenge, beautiful scenery, layered story lines, mental illness, episode cliff hangers and stunning plot twists.

The six- part French miniseries from 2005 is called Dolmen. I found it by accident channel surfing the high numbers on the cable box to land on a secondary PBS channel showing International Mysteries.

The story is set on the fictional fishing island of Ty Kern (which is, in real life is an island off the coast of Brittany, France). The main character, Marie Kermeur, a young police lieutenant, who returns to her home island to marry her childhood love, Christian Bréhat, who is a local celebrity because he is a world sail boat champion. In Ty Kern, four families are connected by ancient rivalries and secrets: the Kersaint, the Le Bihan, the Pérec and the Kermeur. But on the day before the wedding of Marie and Christian, strange events begin to happen. The bloody corpse of a seagull is brought in by the tide, Marie is assaulted by strange nightmares a sea of blood and a woman's scream, her brother Gildas is found dead, and the town's menhirs (glyphs carved into large upright stones) begin to bleed at the dolmen, a megalithic tomb with a large flat stone laid on upright ones, found chiefly in Britain and France, near the island's lighthouse.  Aided by an inspector from the mainland, Lucas Fersen, Marie decides to clarify these strange phenomena. It is now that a series of deaths begin.

Dolmen's story centers around Marie and the secrets of the island. It involved the re-telling of a local legend about ancient piracy, the island's sinister past, and tragic consequences which follow grim decisions in the past. The body count quickly piles up and the police are baffled by the silence of the town people and the fact that no one can explain the ghostly appearance of the bleeding menhirs. Suspects and conflicting motivations swirl throughout the series, as prime candidates suddenly meet their own demise, unraveling more mysteries.

Dolmen did in six episodes which LOST failed to do in six seasons: answer the questions posed in the beginning of the series, and show the clues that were previously scattered throughout the show as part of the final explanation. It was clear that the writers knew where their story was going to end up prior to shooting the first episode. They charted out the complex family relationships and back stories in order peel away the onion skin of island secrets one by one. And the show put in important clues randomly throughout the series which seemed like minor background material until the murder mysteries and "breaks" int the case began to surface.  In the finale, there was no need to dwell on any lengthy verbal explanations to give the viewer enough information to say "Ah ha! That makes sense." And even this series ending left the viewer to postulate a final literal cliff hanger.

The story was so well done that I watched all six episodes even though it was broadcast in French with English subtitles.

As I finished the Dolmen series, which I do not know if it is available on DVD but I highly recommend anyone to watch it if you can,  I read an article written by LOST show runner Damon Lindelof, who was asked by the Hollywood Reporter to write an epilogue of Breaking Bad when that series ended. Lindelof was a big fan of Vince Gilligan's hit drama where an unemployed science teacher finds he has cancer, and decides that he needs to cook meth in order to support his family. That decision leads the main character, Walter White, down a path of evil darkness. The fan base knew that there were possibly only three real endings for their show and the main character. They got a sentimental family farewell; they got Walter trying to make his own twisted redemption, but in the end he finally admits that everything he did, he did it for himself, so he could feel alive.

Successful creative people have an built-in ego which needs to be fed. So as Lindelof is writing a piece on Breaking Bad's ending, he detours to rant out about his own show's ending, and the negative backlash that he still gets from LOST fans.

Lindelof wrote in part:

I am a huge fan of Breaking Bad and have been a zealot of its Church of Awesomeness for years. It's spectacular TV -- spectacular storytelling -- and I am lucky to have borne witness to it. The opportunity to sing the show's praises one last time was not one I could possibly pass up.
And here's what I was not aware of but am now.

All story is reflective, designed to illuminate its own characters and the themes surrounding them. When a show is as brilliant as Breaking Bad, it's not just about the people we're watching, it's about those watching them. About us. In other words, the better the show, the deeper it forces you to look at yourself. On Sunday night, I took a good long look at myself, and this is what I found staring back …
I agreed to write this piece because I am deeply and unhealthily obsessed with finding ways to revisit the Lost finale and the maddening hurricane of shit that has followed it.

I am surprised that after all this time, Lindelof still stings about the criticism of his show's finale, comparing, I guess, the critics to a violent storm of crap. Anyone can read my views, opinions, criticisms and positives of the show in this blog; but I don't think I threw down the feces gauntlet to the show producers. What I, and many other viewers wanted was explanations (separating the wheat from the chaff, the red herrings from the real clues) for the mysteries and questions that Lindelof himself set up in the story lines. Fans had high expectations for the ending.

Lindelof continues:

And this morning? I am Walter White. Arrogant. Conceited. Selfish. Entitled. Looking for ways to blame everything and everyone but myself, even though it is perfectly clear the situation I find myself in is of my own making. And here's the worst part: I'm still naive enough to believe I can attain some level of redemption.

Redemption is a thing that saves someone from error or evil or the action of regaining or gaining possession of something in exchange for payment, such as clearing a debt. It is a personal decision for each viewer whether the show's producers and writers breached their promises in giving us a completed story. Fans spent their time watching LOST with the expectation that certain mysteries would be answered in a reasonable fashion. For a top notch show, they believed they were entitled to a mind blowing finale. TPTB never downplayed those expectations.

He continues:

Earlier drafts of this piece were a love letter to Breaking Bad. The show was a masterpiece. I listed the reasons why. We all know what they are. The finale? Fantastic. Not a false beat.  * * * *  And that would have been the piece you would have read had I finished it. But …

In the comments section of the piece I did not write, the following sentiment would have been echoed dozens of times over: "What the f--- do you know because you f---ed up Lost?!?" How do I know this? Well, for starters, my Twitter feed was pretty much a unanimous run of, "Did you see that, Lindelof? That's how you end a show."

Three years later, it appears that it is not just enough to love Breaking Bad's finale. You also have to hate ours. Yeah, I know. Waaaaaah for me. I should go cry into my barrels full of money. But I swear to you, I'm not looking for empathy. I'm just looking for a way to stop. And I can't.

Alcoholics are smart enough to not walk into a bar. My bar is Twitter. It's Comic-Con. It's anytime someone asks me to write an article even casually relating to Lost.

There is some twisted transference going on here. Why would people who loved the Breaking Bad finale automatically hate LOST's ending? How many cross over viewers were there? And why would a person have to filter a third party's work through their own series' fan issues? It seems narcisstic;  vain, prideful, and selfish to transfer gratification derived from admiration of someone else's work to defend one's own accomplishments.

He goes on with this self-realization:

And what do I do? I jump at the opportunity to acknowledge how many people were dissatisfied with how it ended. I try to be self-deprecating and witty when I do this, but that's an elaborate (or obvious?) defense mechanism to let people know I'm fully aware of the elephant in the room and I'm perfectly fine with it sitting down on my face and shitting all over me.

And this is how pathetic I've become -- I'm using an opportunity to put Breaking Bad into the pantheon of best shows ever (where it undeniably belongs) to narcissistically whine about the perceived shortcomings of my own work.

God, I hate myself. But isn't that what's expected of me? Don't I have to do that? Is it possible for me to ever comment on anything I love without cheekily winking at the audience and saying, "But what do I know -- after all, I ruined Lost?"

It does bear mentioning that not everyone feels this way. There are fans who actually love the way Lost ended. And I can feel the abuse they've taken for having what has become a wildly unpopular opinion, which only makes me love them more. Unfortunately, these kind souls are vastly overwhelmed by, well, less kind souls. So now what?

I'm sick of myself for continuing to beat this particular drum, so I can't imagine how sick of it you are. If it's unpleasant and exhausting for me to keep defending the Lost finale, aren't you getting tired of hating it? And so … I, like Walter White, want out. To be free. And to grant you the same.
I'd like to make a pact, you and me. And here's your part: You acknowledge that I know how you feel about the ending of Lost. I got it. I heard you. I will think about your dissatisfaction always and forever. It will stay with me until I lie there on my back dying, camera pulling slowly upward whether it be a solitary dog or an entire SWAT team that comes to my side as I breathe my last breath.

And here's my part: I will finally stop talking about it. I'm not doing this because I feel entitled or above it -- I'm doing it because I accept that I will not change hearts nor minds. I will not convince you they weren't dead the whole time, nor resent you for believing they were despite my infinite declarations otherwise.

Lindelof proposes a pact, a bargain, with still angry LOST fans. He acknowledges their anger for the ending, and he promises to stop talking or trying to convince them to change their minds about the ending. It is not anger but disappointment. But Lindelof or the other PTB took us on their vision of story ride asking us to believe in the plot, its twists, its questions, its mysteries; to find clues, connect the dots, and watch everything come together. The problem continues to be that TPTB never have explained what happened in the series. That is is what is most upsetting to fans. Even if the ending's explanation of the premise, island, mysteries were bad, unbelievable, or contradictory . . . just give us your creative vision of how all the pieces fit together. And that is why some people continue to be mad, because no authoritative explanation for the missing pieces will ever come.

So Lindelof defiantly concludes:

I stand by the Lost finale. It's the story that we wanted to tell, and we told it. No excuses. No apologies. I look back on it as fondly as I look back on the process of writing the whole show. And while I'll always care what you think, I can't be a slave to it anymore. Here's why:
I did it for me. I liked it. I was good at it. And I was really … I was alive.

So, after several years of fans pondering the questions, asking for explanations, Lindelof will not clarify what the show's ending was all about in concrete terms. Instead, he declares he is slamming the door and closing the book on LOST. The End.

Friday, October 18, 2013


Let's talk about the good things in LOST.

There were a lot of good or interesting aspects to the series:

1. The pilot episode had the pace and twists that hooked fans immediately toward the original story of a bunch of diverse passengers surviving a plane crash.

2. There were some exceptional television acting by cast, including Terry O'Quinn and Michael Emerson.

3.  The camera compositions and lush tropical backgrounds made a unique background stage for a prime time series.

4. Fans could immediately identify with the various characters, and individuals could find comfort in their favorite actors.

5. The back stories added a lot of information to the characters, their personality, their motivations and their mental states.

6. The concept of flashbacks then flash forwards were startlingly well done in the series format.

7. The various story lines proposed interesting and complex topics, such as time travel, smoke monsters, ancient civilization religious rites, infertility issues and science such as electromagnetic energy sources. In other words, the series made the viewer "think" about these topics in new ways. We, the viewers, were not just spoon fed information; we had to go out and do our own "homework" between episodes to try to piece to together the clues and solve the mysteries of the island.

8. There were plenty of clues, misdirections, plot twists, betrayals, red herrings, and WTH out-of-left field story elements which gave fans a dizzy array of puzzle pieces to refashion into their own theories and opinions about the show.

9. The series last 6 years, which is a long run for a serial dramatic prime time television program. It became must-viewing for several million hard core fans.

10. LOST was probably the first television series that created a vast, interactive, internet fan based community of like minded series fanatics. Dozens of blogs and websites sprang up  so people could talk, discuss, debate, argue and find common ground on their favorite televisions show.  It created a small cottage industry of LOST theorists and pundits, authors and video chat hosts.

11. The series still ranks in critical polls as being one of the better television shows in its era.

12. It continues to fuel strong feelings and opinions about it, but not to the level during its initial program run. But when one asks a person about LOST, they still have feelings for the show, good or bad.

13. The series helped launch a new wave of science fiction pilots and shows on network and cable channels. Sci-fi series had used to be a narrow market place for networks; but now there was a formula to try to pull in non-sci-fi viewers into a drama set in various strange settings. Networks and production companies were more comfortable green lighting science fiction shows.

Thursday, October 17, 2013


A mathematical formula for happiness:Reality divided by Expectations. There were two ways to be happy: improve your reality or lower your expectations. — Jodi Picoult

H (happiness) equals R (reality) divided by E( expectations).

H = R/E

The same formula could be applied to The Ending of Lost.
Depending on how "high" your expectations were, the reality (the finale) would drastically reduce your happiness toward the series. If you had no expectations, then you had no feelings about the end.

On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the highest value, then if you had expectations of 10, the ending only was a 1 in your estimation, then you happiness value would be 0.1 (0.1 = 1/10)

If you had high expectations and the show's ending was "perfect," then you would have a happiness value of 1.0 (1= 10/10).

Then if you put your number on a grading scale, like in school (multiply by 100), a happiness score of:

90 + would be an "A" or excellent;
80 + would be a "B" or good;
70+ would be a "C" or average;
60 + would be a "D" or below average; and
below 60 would be an "F" for failure.

But this life formula can be viewed in other ways.

For example, it could be modified to be restated as:

H x E = R

Does Happiness times Expectations equal Reality?

H x R = E

Does Happiness times Reality equal Expectations?

For example, if you were a diehard LOST fan, depending on "happy" you were about how Season 6 was progressing or not processing, then you could have high feelings and high expectations (10 x 10) or 100 = Reality.  I don't think even TPTB were ever at that orbit.

If you had high expectations (10), did the reality of the ending meet your happiness level to match your high expectations? It would take a 5 x 2 to equal 10, but that would it still would be a failure. A 10 and a 1 would infer some sort of brain aneurysm. 

Maybe a better way of looking at this is:

L = R /(H x E)

LOST equals Reality divided by the sum of Happiness times Expectations.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


One of the key shots in the series was a close up of a single eye opening. It usually signaled a character change, a flashback, or new story tangent. What does an eye represent?

The phrase "mind's eye" refers to the human ability for visualization,that is the experience of visual mental imagery; in other words, one's ability to "see" things within one's mind.

The biological foundation of the mind's eye is not fully understood. MRI studies have shown that the lateral geniculate nucleus and the V1 area of the brain's visual cortex are activated during mental imagery tasks. Scientists have found that this visual pathway is not a one one street. Higher areas of the brain can also send visual signals back to neurons connected in the lower areas of the visual cortex, also creating the ability to see or have a perceptual experience in the absence of actual visual imput from a person's eyes.

Deeper studies of the brain have shown that below the neocortex (where the center of perception exists), the thalamus has been found to be discrete to other components in that it processes all forms of perceptional data relayed from both lower and higher components of the brain. Damage to this component can produce permanent perceptual damage, however when damage is inflicted upon the cerebral cortex,  the brain adapts to neuroplasticity  to amend any occlusions for perception. It can be thought that the neocortex is a sophisticated memory storage warehouse in which data received as an input from sensory systems are compartmentalized via the cerebral cortex. This would essentially allow for shapes to be identified, although given the lack of filtering input produced internally, one may as a consequence, hallucinate - essentially seeing something that isn't received as an input externally but rather internal (i.e. an error in the filtering of segmented sensory data from the cerebral cortex may result in one seeing, feeling, hearing or experiencing something that is inconsistent with reality).

Other studies theorize that the pineal gland may be the source of the mind's eye. Researchers think that during near death experiences and dreaming, the gland may secrete a hallucinogenic chemical known as DMT which could  produce internal visuals when external sensory data is occluded.

The pineal gland is a light sensitive gland that is located deep in the brain at its hemispheric division. It produces the serotonin  derivative melatonin, a hormone that affects the modulation of wake/sleep patterns and seasonal functions in a person's body cycle. Because of its location and light sensitive properties, many philosophers believe this gland is the gateway into enlightenment beyond mere dream states. Some people believe that this gland is the gateway to the soul or spiritual world.

This is best described as "the third eye" (or the inner eye) in Hinduism. The third eye is a mystical concept referring to a speculative invisible eye which provides perception beyond ordinary sight.  The third eye refers to the gate that leads to inner realms and spaces of higher consciousness.

 In New Age spirituality, the third eye often symbolizes a state of enlightenment and process of mental images  having deeply personal spiritual or psychological significance. The third eye is often associated with religious visions, clairvoyance, the ability to observe chakras or auras, precognition and out-of-body experiences.  People who are claimed to have the capacity to utilize their third eyes are sometimes known as seers.

In ancient Egyptian religion, the Eye of Horus contained powerful symbolism.  Horus was a sky god usually depicted as a falcon. His right eye was associated with the sun god, Ra. The eye symbol represents the marking around the eye of the falcon, including the "teardrop"marking sometimes found below the eye. The mirror image, or left eye, sometimes represented the moon  and the god Djehuti (Thoth, the scribe and holder of magical powers). In one myth, when brothers Set and Horus were fighting for the throne after Orsiris's death, Set gouged out Horus's left eye. The majority of the eye was restored by either Hathor  or Thoth (with the last portion possibly being supplied magically). When Horus's eye was recovered, he offered it to his father, Osiris, the god of the underworld, in hopes of restoring his life. Hence, the eye of Horus was often used to symbolise sacrifice, healing, restoration, and protection.

Besides the close ups of eyes, John Locke had a similar scar across his right eye like in the story of Horus. Locke's goal on the island was succeed Horus, and later Ben, in the leader of the natives. Locke was the person who found and interacted with the (holographic or repetitive image) of Horace near Jacob's cabin.

Also, in Season 1, Jack, Locke, Sun, Claire, Boone, Michael, Charlie, Sawyer and Jin all had eye close ups which led to flashback story lines. This is strong evidence that even though a clever foreshadowing device to get back stories started, it may have served a more compelling clue that in each case, the eye that was "opening" was the character's inner eye, or mind's eye - - -  the gateway to inner, magical or spiritual realms.

It would also explain why so many people appeared to be uninjured despite the plane tearing apart and falling from 35, 000 feet. They were, but it was their minds that were creating a new perception of the world around them when they were in shock, or in a coma, or having near death experiences. The story structure then is a patchwork quilt of the passengers own perceptions if they survived the plane crash. It is a collective story telling through the portal of individual pineal glands set off by the unique electromagnetic energy of the island (which gives life, death and rebirth.)  While it seems that it would be one consistent story, each individual character was in his or her own dream state. This could be why there are drastic mood and alliance changes during the series because we do not know who is the actual projector of that story line.

So when Christian tells Jack that all the people in the church, his fellow passengers, were the most important people in his "life," it was his pre-purgatory limbo that his mind's eye shared with the other island crash victims, in order to sacrifice, heal, restore, and protect their spiritual souls so they could move on in the after life together by reconnecting in the church realm. The toll to pass to the church realm was to work out one's material, selfish, and sinful nature in order to redeem the goodness trapped in one's soul. That is the true escape from the island, through each person's inner eye.