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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

LOST Theories For S6E15 Across The Sea May 11th, 2010

Games. Across the sea was either the greatest gift to a baffled fan or the longest con of all. In it we get an answers to a few of the biggest head scratchers this side of the Tunisian bus stop on the Frozen Donkey Wheel line. But as C.J. Cregg, er Allison Janney tells Clauida, “Every question I answer will simply lead to another question.” Such is the nature of LOST, for every answer there is another question.

Now, I’ve tried and tried to look at this episode as objectively as possible and not read too much into it. After all, there’s no sense in postulating a lot of theories about the history of the island since we will probably not see anything of a pre 21st century timeline in the last three episodes. All we can hope for is Michael Emerson to give us some exposition over the highlight reel during the obligatory recap episode we’ll get just before the finale. However, I want to draw some parallels that have been running through the history of this show since "Pilot".

In the beginning there was a woman. She delivered two boys. The mother was killed and the boys were raised by another. The fair haired angelic son was named Jacob. The other, the bad twin (get it LOST fans?) was given no name. He was the favorite. He was loved above others. He was manipulated into being a means to an end. The good son doted, obeyed, protected, defended his giver of life while “He who shall not be named” was curious, questioning, willing to disobey and discover. Fate vs. Free Will. And for every beginning there is an ending. Perhaps it’s a snake eating its own tail. A wheel spinning around, marking the events on an island, ultimately returning to its starting position.

We get the glimpse of Claudia floating on wood towards the shore of the island. She is pregnant. Right away we know who she’s carrying and that leads us to my second biggest theory debunker of all.

  1. Jacob and Locke Monster are actually brothers and the whole mother thing will play out a bit more in a final showdown. We already know that Alpert is the only character to have a flashback this season so it stands to reason that any explanations will be done through exposition between characters.

    1. Jacob was loved more than MiB
    2. MiB will be known as either Samuel or Esau

    It actually turns out that this works in favor of my theory. We know that Jacob and MiB are brothers but whether or not Jacob was loved more than his brother remains to be seen. Their mother said they loved each of them in different ways. (more on that) And we did get more exposition about their back story like I said. I was off on the name but frankly I like it that way. I thought it was a cruel joke by Team Lost to not give him a name. We’ve all been speculating and when we finally get a real chance to hear the magic name, we get “I only picked one name.” HAHA LOST fans, we screwed you. In actuality he needs no name. Voldemort, The Devil, Keyser Soze, whatever you want to call him is evil. And evil does not need a name, it only needs an audience.

    So, after the babies are born…which look to be 2 months prior to being birthed… they are wrapped in swaddling, opposite colored clothes and there is a moment of “ah ha!” in C.J.’s... err Allison Janney's eyes. She then says “I’m sorry” and bashes in Claudia’s head with a rock. What was that moment? A revelation, a means to an end. One side is light and the other is dark. One will protect the island. The other will provide me an escape… a loophole.

    Still… LOST? What if Claudia had washed up on shore and met Allison Janney and Allison Janney had said, “What did one snowman say to the other?” Would that clear it up for you? (Ok, we’ll come back to that.)

    The players change but the game is always the same. There are two players, one side is light and one side is dark. The man of faith accepts what is happening and plays his part. The man of science searches for more answers, rallying against the status quo. From the get go, Jacob is the man of faith and his brother is the man of science. Jacob never questioned his origins nor did he leave his faux ma to be with his people. He accepted his role. His brother got a glimpse of another life with “his” people, off the island, and wanted to leave. He wanted to use science to leave the island. Just as Locke became the man of faith and Jack became the man of science when it came down to everything, the island, the button, the freighter.

    Now, the roles have been reversed. Jack is now the man of faith, taking the leap of faith off the starboard bow of the Elizabeth, a baptismal if you will into the role of “Man of Faith” while Locke, now possessed by the soul of Jacob’s brother, has become the man of science using technology, a plane, a sub, explosives to leave the island. Ultimately we will see the donkey wheel again because I have no doubt that he intended to use every other means of escape as a means of disposal for the candidates only to return to his original work as the way to leave.

    Whether it be Senet, Backgammon, Chess, or Stratego… Does anyone want to play Stratego… I have Stratego… the game itself is an overly complex design to achieve a simple task. But the game that Jacob’s brother found was simply a metaphor for what is really going on here. Manipulation of pieces on a board. One side moves the pieces into place. Some are used for sacrifice to expose the opponent to more substantial attack. The player cannot directly get at the opponent but can use his pawns to win the game. Think of the island and everyone on it as a game board and a bunch of pieces. In every age the game is adapted to the time. For Jacob and his brother it was what looked like to be a Senet board. For the LOSTIES it was backgammon. Two sides, two colors, two players, multiple pieces.

    Perhaps since the dawn of time, the island has been a game. Maybe what we believe to be the game masters, Jacob and his brother are merely the newest round of players. I get the feeling that their mother was forced to play the game as she was handed the role from the previous player. In any case, the game continues and continues much like a game of Tic-Tac-Toe. That is a game which, if played correctly, will never have a winner. It always ends in a tie, the balance of power stays the same.

    When The Other Mother showed the brothers to the cave of light I wanted to throw my fandom at the television. WTF?!?! (Mandatory Internet Slang Quota Per Post Reached) It’s a cave with a hundred watt bulb hanging inside of it. I think we need to change the name of the show to LAND OF THE LOST because that was straight outta Sid and Marty Kroft’s playbook. I half expected there to be Sleestak running about and claymation dinosaurs chasing the family back to the cave to grab the flyswatter. It also looked as if Jacob’s brother went over a waterfall into the light before smokey appeared, much like the Marshalls went over the waterfall in the opening to Land of the Lost.

    We have been told that there is a very simple explanation for what’s going on and that it was rooted in reality but this was just too much. I should give up that theory because this whole season has pretty much blown the rules of science and reality out of the water. However, cheesy metaphors for the source of life aside, the cave did serve a purpose. It sets up the tasks to be performed by the protector and the prize for mere mortals to fight and plunder over for centuries.

    You get the sense that Other Mother blindfolded her sons so that neither one could assume control of power until it was time. Keeping the cave a secret allowed for them to be captured and not be able to tell the location.

    I’m coming back to my comparison of Jacob’s mother and the button. I have said before that we should not read too much into the glyphs and structures on the island because they are inconsequential to the overall story. Every set of people that have come to the island have used their culture to interpret what the island is and the mysteries that reside within it. The more we fish for rationalizations of the importance of the temple or the statue the more red herrings we catch. Quite simply, if I arrived on the island and experienced these weird things, I would interpret them as being a product of whatever culture or civilization I came from and would document or deify them as such. The players change but the game stays the same. So disregard all you think you know about Greek or Egyptian mythology. Forget trying to figure out why the button had to be pushed every 108 minutes. It means nothing.

    The simple fact of the matter is that there has been a lie perpetuated by centuries of misdirection and misinformation. Allison Janney came to the island “by accident” as she told Claudia. However, instead of being part of the game, she was made a player. She opened the ancient equivalent to a hatch and the equivalent of Desmond popped out fed her a line and gave her some wine. Then she probably killed or found a way to cause the death of whoever was guarding the Easy Smoke Oven. Then she became the ageless guardian and with the birth of twins she found a means to the end. “One of them will take my place as guardian of the island and the other one will kill me finally ending my Richard Alpert problem.” All she needed to do was figure out which one was going to be which. She planted the seeds of destruction with the game. Think about The Long Con in which Sawyer happened to drop open a briefcase full of money. “Oh my, don’t look at all that money that you were obviously never supposed to see. Damn these cheap briefcases. That’s the last time I go to Staples.” Except in this case, the Senet game established the sides. The one who is devoted to me will be the protector while the one who chooses to keep secrets and deceive me will be the one to kill me. In fact, are we really sure she wasn’t involved with the “appearance” of Claudia to Jacob’s brother? After all, most dead people on the island are a product of the smoke monster. And if we’re pretty sure that, prior to Jacob kicking his brother to the cave, Smokey never existed then how did Claudia show up? Moving pieces. Strategy. Money in a briefcase. The Mousetrap Game.

    By revealing the truth of their origins to Jacob’s brother she set him down the path of rebellion. He wants to leave. He’ll work his whole life to find an escape and just as he’s about to do it, I’ll take it away. He’ll be so pissed that he’ll kill me, right after I secure his brother as the protector of the island. And to think that she gave Jacob the same wine that Jacob gave Alpert is telling. Whether the wine is actually sacred or magical is debatable. The incantation she gave could be window dressing. One may simply have to accept the responsibility to be a part of something and the wine is a contract. A covenant. A pact. A handshake. Communion.

    Over the centuries the torch has been passed. The cons continue. MiB conned Ben into doing everything he wanted in order to push Ben into the mindset that he had done everything at the behest of Jacob and Jacob never cared. Jacob may have never had any dealings with Ben. Ben was a fanboy who saw too much into the imaginary relationship he had with his hero, the rock star, and it was all the machinations of MiB to push Ben into killing Jacob. And now he has conned the con, Sawyer, into believing he could get him off the island when in fact he meant to trap every candidate and blow them up, allowing him the chance to leave the island.

    So, we got some answers. The Source is the cave of the 100 watt bulb. The donkey wheel was constructed by Jacob’s brother. The wheel when connected to the source moves the island and drops you in Tunisia and the skeletons of Adam and Eve were Jacob’s family. That’s a lot of stuff crammed into one episode. I still don’t know what exactly the Source is but I don’t think it will matter much. It’s a trope of television and movies. What’s inside the Lost Ark in Indiana Jones? What’s inside the briefcase in Pulp Fiction? It is merely alien space bats or a macguffin. Look them up. It’s something that is shiny and pure and needs protecting from those who would attempt to poison and destroy my brothers…

    Does the source turn you to smoke? Or is it Pandora’s box and using a human to open it unleashes all the evils of the world in the form of the smoke monster, leaving only hope. And why did Jacob’s brother’s body end up like the pilot from "Pilot?" Simple, he was spat out, blown out by the rushing smoke. He was the mentos dropped into the cave of diet coke and got shot out. The smoke monster took his form because he was dead, assuming the identity and memories of his host. That’s why it is possible for him to be Adam and why none of us would have ever seen it coming. Why? The possibility of Eve being their mother was never suggested to us until we learned from Smokey/MiB that he had a mother in "Recon" and that he never really had a body after the events of "Across The Sea."

    Every time they find a place like this they dig. It doesn’t matter what culture whether it be Jacob’s people or the Dharma Initiative, when they find a hotspot they dig. In fact you could probably call Jacob’s brother a part of the original Dharma Initiative. Then they were purged. Probably because they were coming to close to finding The Source. Makes you wonder if the Orchid, The Well, and The Swan are a triangulation around the Source. But how does the wheel, water, and the 100 watt bulb work? Once again, it does not matter in the scheme of things. What does matter is that now that the submarine is gone and the plane is rigged to blow, it may pan out that MiB was going back to his old ways all along and that these other means of transportation were just more red herrings. Ones that could get a candidate killed. MiB will probably go back to the donkey wheel to escape.

    Adam and Eve have been a topic of debate since "House of the Rising Sun" in Season One. With every new wrinkle of possibility introduced each season the list of candidates who they are has expanded. I always figured it would be Rose and Bernard. Turns out, I was way off on all my theories, and the whole white stone / black stone. Another red herring that really represented pieces of the game that Jacob and his brother used to play. An inside joke. Two players. One side light and one side dark. But the rate of decomposition does not jive with Jack’s assumption that they were only 60 years dead. Maybe the nature of the island is responsible or maybe Jack is really bad at that kind of thing and figured as a doctor, no one would question him.

    1. MiB, UnLocke, Flocke, Lockeness, Esau, Nemesis, Not Lock, whatever you call him is a fallen angel, perhaps the devil.

    8. The reason why Jacob and MiB cannot kill each other directly is because they are the same entity and only through indirect contact can the scale of power be tipped towards one consciousness and eventually it will be revealed ala Tyler Durden.
    Yeah, no fallen angels here. He was mortal. Also, I can scratch off number 8 because they are definitely two distinct people and their mother somehow made it impossible for them to directly hurt the other.

    "The Package"
    1. Adam and Eve are…

      1. Rose and Bernard. 40% Most acceptable answer as we have not seen them yet in the OT
      2. Jin and Sun 20% It would be the payoff of them finally being reunited.
      3. Desmond and Penny. 10% Low score on this since if Desmond ends up being the new Jacob he wouldn’t have died and these skeletons died in the past.
      4. Kate and Jack. 10% Unlikely since they would have to time travel again.
      5. Kate and Sawyer 10% Unlikely in that Sawyer was married to Juliet, he’s done with Kate romantically.
      6. Never explained. 9% I’d have a brain melt down.
      7. Nikki and Paulo. 1% That would send me over the edge.
    BUUURRRRRRR! Way wrong on all counts. Although, it begs the question of what happened to Rose, Bernard and Vincent after the time travel from the 70s to the present? I’ll accept the answer but it was really a softball one. I pretty much feel as if the producers said, “Everyone thinks they know who Adam and Eve are. Why not throw them the biggest curve ball ever?”

    "The Last Recruit"
    The biggest gamble of a theory I have is that at the end there will be a reveal that one or more of the remaining Losties aside from Locke will be MiB. Wouldn’t that be a trip if it all came down to Team MiB and Team Jacob standing on opposing sides only to have select members of Team Jacob turn and point their guns at Jack and Desmond. It’s a long shot theory because that would mean that Frank infected Hurley who was voted least likely to become a host for the smoke monster in his senior year.
    Yeah, I think I can safely say that there is no need to go the route that one or more of the remaining cast is also part of the smoke monster. Whew!

    "Everybody Loves Hugo"
    1. The little boy is

      1. A rapidly growing Jacob getting ready to assume the persona of a candidate and that’s why his hair has changed color with every candidate that witnesses him in the presence of MiB. Blond for Sawyer, Brown for Desmond.
    Yay for me, sorta.

    Not much to theorize since we will never see this time on the island again.   I pretty much laid out my theory that MiB will attempt to use the donkey wheel to escape and probably Desmond will be involved with that.   Maybe Desmond is now the source and Jack is going to be the new Jacob.

    Three and a half more hours to go.   Can you feel the tension or will you be glad to have it over?

    One more thing for your homework assignment.   Go watch Land of the Lost and a small obscure show called Children of the Stones.   Children of the Stones was on Nickelodeon when I was a kid.  It was a British Fantasy / Sci-Fi / Horror series about a Stonehenge like ring of stones in Britain that held mysterious paganistic powers that invloved astronomy and magic.   Very scary to a young kid but follows the same style of storytelling involving time looping and repeat actions toward an end that you get on LOST.   Go to YouTube and look it up.  I just watched the pilot epsiode last week.

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