Category Archives: Theories

A possible explanation for some of LOST’s unanswered questions

How did pushing the button control the Island's energy?

What if maybe — just maybe — there are some answers to the unsolved mysteries after all?

Alffmix, a poster on the Lostpedia forums, believes that many of the big mysteries of the show — from the source of Jacob’s power to the Island’s ability to heal — can be explained by electromagnetism. Specifically, Alffmix says, the tug between electromagnetism’s negative and postive forces, going in and out of balance, is what caused many of the Island’s strangest phenomenon.

The theory provides a science-based, or science-fiction-based explanation that fills in some of the huge gaps left by the finale’s focus on vague spirituality.

This is an exciting theory, maybe even a grand unified theory of LOST. It suggests that the balance of positive and negative electromagnetic energy is related to the balance between white and black, Jacob and Smokey, and good and evil as presented in the show. If the theory is correct, then the scale we saw with the black and white stones becomes a symbolic representation of something that is real and concrete.

The theory does add up. It does sound plausible. It does make sense. It’s hard to say, though, whether it’s an imaginative viewer seeing patterns that weren’t intentionally planted, or whether the writers themselves actually did build this explanation into the show.

Take a look at the post, where the theory is laid out. What do you think? –> Ten big questions that can be answered with one word

(Lostedia forums, via TWoP)

Damon and Carlton talk to the New York Times

Damon and Carlton

Some highlights of the interview published May 13, 2010:

1) Damon and Carlton are asked the question that comes up in almost every interview — how much of the end did they know when they started?

What’s interesting is that Carlton gives an answer that I don’t think I’ve seen before:

CARLTON CUSE: The literal last scene of the show was something that we concocted very early on in the first season of the show.

I’d read an interview, earlier, where they said that they came up with the ending between the first and the second seasons. So this is new info (for me, at least) that they had thought up the very last scene so early.

Carlton then goes to say something more in line with previous interviews:

But the last episode is an amalgam of ideas that started with our first mythology conversations in the first season when we realized after the pilot came out and the ratings were huge that the show was going to go a long time.

I’m getting very excited now, to see the finale, especially since it sounds like we will be kept in suspense until the very last moment. It’s going to be a long wait, for that moment to come — three-and-a-half hours, if you watch the recap show that will precede the finale, to get to that very last scene.

2) Damon talked at some length about redemption as a theme:

Q. Your show traffics in a lot of big themes — fate versus free will, good versus evil, faith versus reason, how often Sawyer should be shirtless. Ultimately, what were the most important themes for you in this series?

DAMON LINDELOF If there’s one word that we keep coming back to, it’s redemption. It is that idea of everybody has something to be redeemed for and the idea that that redemption doesn’t necessarily come from anywhere else other than internally. But in order to redeem yourself, you can only do it through a community. So the redemption theme started to kind of connect into “live together, die alone,” which is that these people were all lone wolves who were complete strangers on an aircraft, even the ones who were flying together like Sun and Jin. Then let’s bring them together and through their experiences together allow themselves to be redeemed. When the show is firing on all pistons, that’s the kind of storytelling that we’re doing.

I think we’ve always said that the characters of “Lost” are deeply flawed, but when you look at their flashback stories, they’re all victims. Kate was a victim before she killed her stepfather. Sawyer’s parents killed themselves as he was hiding under the bed. Jack’s dad was a drunk who berated him as a child. Sayid was manipulated by the American government into torturing somebody else. John Locke had his kidney stolen. This idea of saying this bad thing happened to me and I’m a victim and it created some bad behavior and now I’m going to take responsibility for that and allow myself to be redeemed by community with other people, that seems to be the theme that we keep coming back to.

This seems to bolster my Oedipus LOST theory, which I’m thinking now may be wrong in the details, but may be right in some overarching kind of way. In that theory Jacob redeemed himself by bringing the LOST-ies to the Island and helping them to redeem themselves, in order to atone for a long-ago crime.

3) Carlton talked about the relationship between Sawyer and Juliet, how it started as a “what if” question, how they were doubtful the idea would work, and how, in the end, it took on a surprising life of its own:

And lo and behold, this thing blossomed forth that no one was expecting, which was there was sort of a mature kind of love between these two characters.

It’s a good interview, well worth reading the whole thing: The Men Who Made ABC’s ‘Lost’ Last

A bit more on my theory, plus thoughts about 6×15, plus still unanswered questions

The Man in Black still doesn't have a name

Earlier this evening, before 6×15 Across the Sea came on, I took a look back at my Oedipus Lost theory.

How does it stand up after 6×15? (Warning: 6×15 spoilers ahead, so close your eyes if you haven’t seen the episode yet).

Like many other fans, I was right in thinking that Jacob and the MiB were brothers — twins, like the Biblical Jacob and Esau.

I was wrong in thinking that the Jacob-MiB saga would be rooted in patricide. This dysfunctional family had brother killing mother, and brother killing brother, but nobody killed a father because there were no fathers to be found.

I was right in originally thinking that Jacob was a prisoner, of sorts, of the Island, even though I later came to doubt that.

Well, enough about theories. Some random thoughts about the episode, along with some still-unanswered questions:

Amazing opening. When Mommy Dearest picked up the stone and attacked Birth Mother, I did not see that coming.

Quibble: Why was Mommy Dearest so surprised that there was a second baby? Did she not see Birth Mother’s belly?

Oh, and another quibble: Kid in Black said he didn’t know what death was, but then in the next scene he was running after a boar with a spear. What did he think he was going to do to the boar?

So Smokey will eventually inhabit his own dead body? Hmmm.

What gave Mommy Dearest, Jacob, and the MiB the ability to live so long? What gave Mommy Dearest the power to prevent Jacob and the MiB from hurting each other?

Who was the guardian of the light before Mommy Dearest?

If Mommy Dearest was the power behind Jacob and MiB, who was the power behind Mommy Dearest? Who started the chain of guardians of the light, and why?

And what is the light, anyway?

What was in that wine?

Who would have thought that Jacob could be so whiny and petulant! (“I don’t waaaaana guard the light.”)

Not sure how I feel about having the MiB revealed as a sympathetic character — not after what he did to Sun and Jin, and the 815 pilot, and the people in the Temple, and all the random strangers who got in his way.

How did the nice light turn him into such a mean monster?

When Mommy Dearest said “Thank you,” to the MiB, was she thanking him for killing her (thus ending the curse of immortality)?

The screenshot is from the Season 5 finale, from when the MiB asked Jacob, “Do you know how much I want to kill you?” Now we finally have some idea why he felt that way, and also why he needed a loophole.

A look back at my “Oedipus Lost” theory

Jacob talking to the Man in Black in the Season 5 Finale

Before Season 6 started, I came up with a theory (because every LOST fan has to have a theory, right?) which I called “Oedipus Lost.”

Tonight’s episode (6×15 Across the Sea), which starts in half an hour, will probably give us the backstory for Jacob and the Man in Black. So I wanted to take a quick glance at my earlier theory to see how much of it still might hold true — before we start getting some of the actual answers.

(What I wrote back in January, during the hiatus, is in blockquotes. My current comments, based on what we’ve learned so far in Season 6, are interspersed:)

We know that Jacob brought the LOSTies to the Island, and before that, he brought the Black Rock ship, and before that, he brought other people — the ones who came, fought, destroyed, and corrupted, in the words of the Man in Black.

The big question, of course, is why is Jacob bringing all these people to the Island?

We now know that the reason he brought the LOST-ies had to do with their being candidates, but that doesn’t explain everything about why and how he brought them, much less why/how he brought the Black Rock, and all the other fighter-destroyer-corrupters.

One thing we know about the LOSTies is that, as a group, they have an extraordinary number of Daddy issues.

Well, that’s certainly still true!

What if that were actually the reason that Jacob chose them?

This was the crux of my theory back in January, and I still think it might be true.

And if that were the case, then why?

Still don’t know.

Suppose that Jacob himself has Daddy issues. Suppose, also, that Jacob is on the Island not because he wants to be, but because he has to be. There’s a hint of that, I think, in Jacob’s oddly impassive reaction to the Man in Black when the MiB said he wanted to kill him.

This has gotten complicated by what we’ve seen in Season 6. It is the MiB who complains about being trapped on the Island, not Jacob. But has Jacob really been forthcoming?

Combine the two ideas: Jacob having his own Daddy issues, and Jacob being stuck on the Island for centuries against his will. That suggests some sort of crime and punishment, with the Island being a place of exile, a prison.

We now know that the MiB sees it that way. But Jacob seems to be more of the jailer — the one keeping the cork lodged in the bottle — than the prisoner. Again, that’s assuming that there won’t be a reversal ahead.

Because of the Island’s strange time-warping properties, Jacob’s sentence spans far more than a normal single lifetime.

Someone’s sentence is spanning many lifetimes.

Such a long sentence implies there must have been a horrible crime. And the worst crime that exists that involves Daddy issues would be patricide. Maybe, like Oedipus Rex, Jacob — way back in his original life, eons ago — had killed his father.

The problem is, if that boy who spooked NotLocke — the boy who looked like Robin Hood — was a young Jacob, and if Jacob actually grew up on the Island, then that would be the end of he idea that he had been sent there as an exile for a horrible crime. The same is true for the MiB if he also grew up there (and judging from the sneak peeks for tonight’s episode, I’m guessing that he did).

Maybe it was their parents who were the criminals, and Jacob and the MiB just came along because they were kids and they had to — similar to the way that Ben came to the Island because his father did.

And now he is stuck, seemingly forever, on an Island prison. Maybe there is only one way for him to end his sentence — by restoring some balance to the world by doing something that would counteract his terrible crime. Only in that way could he atone and be forgiven.

It seems the MiB is the one trying to get unstuck — and that he needs to kill all the candidates to do so. Hmmm …

Maybe Jacob’s task is to heal people who have been harmed by terrible rifts with their fathers. More precisely, maybe he is trying to show them how to heal themselves. Success in this task would be the only thing that could release him from his centuries-long sentence.

Jacob seems less benign now than he did before Season 6 started, less of a beneficent healer.

Perhaps he has tried, and failed, with all the previous groups he brought to the Island — which is what was frustrating the Man in Black. But the current LOSTies do seem to be responding to Jacob’s guidance, and many of then have, while on the Island, come to terms with their Daddy issues and grown beyond them.

I’d still like to see that story, but it probably isn’t the one that the show will be telling. 😉

Slow-motion version of “The Last Recruit” promo, some info on the music, and a thought about fire

Here’s the promo for 6×13 “The Last Recruit.” First time through is how it was shown on TV. Second time through is in slow motion:

The strange, creepy music in the background is a song called Through the Loop by Pendulum, which in turn is a remixed version of a song sung by Gene Wilder in the movie Willie Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.

Pedulum is an Australian group, which recently arrived in Los Angeles aboard Oceanic Flight 815. Okay, I made that last part up, but they really are an Australian group, now located in the UK where, according to Wikipedia, they are immensely popular. Through the Loop is from their 2005 album Hold Your Colour.

These are the lyrics that are sung (and shouted) in the LOST-promo version:

There’s no earthly way of knowing
Which direction we are going
Not a speck of light is showing
So the danger must be growing
Are the fires of Hell a-glowing
Is the grisly reaper mowing
Yes, the danger must be growing
And they’re certainly not showing
Any signs that they are slowing

There are a lot of lines in the lyrics which apply to the situation of the LOST-ies, but the line about the fires of Hell a-glowing jumped out at me. I had come up with (ahem) a theory, back when The Incident aired, that fire plays some kind of important role in the lives of Jacob and the Man in Black. The fire in Jacob’s lair was so prominent at the beginning of The Incident, and it was into that fire that Flocke kicked Jacob’s body at the end.

I still think fire must be important, though three-quarters of a season later, I don’t feel much closer to knowing why. But think about this: Jacob is now ashes, and the MiB is now smoke. It’s ashes that are used to form a magic circle to keep Smokey away. And Frogurt was killed by a flaming arrow.

Joking about Frogurt, but I do think there must be something about fire that has to do with Jacob and the MiB — in particular, perhaps, with the limitations that are placed on their powers.

Sneak peek # 2 for 6×07 “Dr Linus” — slightly spoilerish

This scene is from the sideways world. It’s SO good:

And, if I can toot my own horn for a sec, Elba, the word that Ben writes on the blackboard in the clip, is something I was thinking about when I wrote my theory Oedipus Lost.

That theory, which I wrote before Season 6 started, now appears to be wrong in some respects. But I think in one respect — that something is going on that has to do with exile — it might be close to being right. Though from what we’ve seen so far this season, it wasn’t Jacob who was in exile and trapped on the Island against his will (which is what I had been thinking at the time) — it was Smokey.

Theories aside, I love to watch sideways Ben as a teacher. That scene from a few episodes back where he was fussing over the coffee pot in the break room was one of my favorite of the season so far. It was pitch perfect — it seemed exactly how Ben would have turned out if he hadn’t been immersed in the Pool of Doom in the temple as a child.

Official ABC promo with time running backwards

This is the promo that they showed on Tuesday after the enhanced version of “The Incident.”

Lots of interesting things are going on here, including Locke rising up to the window, Charlie going into the station, and the two pieces of the plane coming together.

Alternate timeline, here we come.

Via sl-LOST

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