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The Dark Side – 6.06 “Sundown”

By Fishbiscuit,

  Filed under: Lost Recaps
  Comments: 105

Shall we receive Good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive Evil? – Job 2:10

When Sayid woke up after being drowned to death in the dirtywater pool, he didn’t seem any different than we’ve known and loved him to be all these years. He was the same coldblooded killer with the same impeccable manners and the same big soulful eyes. But this episode set us straight about what happened to him. He didn’t come back as the same old Iraqi torturer with the ambiguously noble heart. He came back more like the way that Buffy came back. He came back wrong.

When someone has killed as many people, as gracefully and fluently as Sayid has, it’s hard to pinpoint what made this week’s killing spree somehow different. We’ve seen Sayid kill a lot of people, a lot of places. He’s done a country club assassination.

A post coital bullet to the belly.

He shot a hole into the heart of an innocent kid.

Killing is Sayid’s gift.

But he mostly felt really bad about it. His big brown eyes got all sad. Sometimes he even cried.

This Sayid was different. When Ben discovered him by the side of the bubbling sulfur pit where he killed Dogen and his hippie friend, he looked like a wild animal that has just ripped someone’s intestines out with his bare teeth. He looked like he’d been interrupted in his feasting on a still steaming corpse. This Sayid isn’t conflicted about the killing he just did. He enjoyed it.

” A belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness.” – Joseph Conrad

Now, I’ve got to preface this recap by stating outright that I haven’t got the faintest idea what is going on with LOST this season.

I don’t know why they introduced the Temple only to ravage it a few episodes in or why the Temple was guarded by a 20th century businessman who chose to dress like a medieval samurai (Halloween costume maybe?) or where all these people were a few short days ago when the Smoke Monster was haunting Ben in the Temple basement, since they’ve made a rather large point out of the fact that, until this episode, the Smoke Monster couldn’t get into the Temple.
I’m a little nervous to keep picking apart clues now that we know that Kate’s name was in fact on the ceiling, but an editor dropped it on the cutting room floor, and the date on Aaron’s sonogram was an error, and I’m going to guess, Sayid’s Iranian passport in LA X was just a prop mistake.
This whole thing isn’t feeling exactly airtight these days. But I guess that’s ok. I can deal with a little human error and lapses in common sense, so long as they get the big things right. And I don’t think anything is much bigger than the theme of Blackness and Whiteness, and where the LOST story is going to come down on the ancient questions of Good and Evil. What I’m starting to wonder is if we’re going to get an intelligent exploration of the human dilemma or if the whole thing is about to descend into a morally simplistic comic book farce.
That’s the thing that’s got me just a little bit nervous.

I’ve always found it remarkable how LOST, at least until now, has avoided the trap of moral absolutism. LOST has been a show where we can watch a man like Sayid terrorize, betray and butcher his fellow human beings … but we can still love him and want to see him happy.

After this week, however, I think we can safely say that for Sayid, a happy ending ain’t happening. It took a long time coming, but Judgment Day is nigh. And I don’t think Sayid is going to be the only one who will have to answer to his Maker.

LOST’s Season One finale was a beautiful episode called Exodus. I watched it and reviewed it just recently, as a matter of fact. In that episode the Island child was given the name of Aaron, the brother to Moses – the great Hero who led the Chosen People to the Promised Land, with the help of a column of Holy Smoke.

It was an episode that plunged us into the dark, scary hellfire and brimstone of the Biblical Old Testament – literature’s first great horror story. In the Bible, the Lord God established his dominion over mankind by smacking the shit out of them at every opportunity, or by having his Candidates do it. He helped murder little boys for making fun of Elisha’s bald head, he helped David rip off 200 Philistine foreskins so he could buy himself a wife, he helped Samson slay thousands with just the jawbone of a donkey. The Old Testament Lord was a badass, mean-ass monster and he seemed to thoroughly condone mass murder, so long as it was being done in his name. It was, like LOST, a story where Good and Evil kept getting called out as if they were opposites, but one where most of the time, the difference between them is entirely unclear.

In Sundown, Evil and Good have retreated to their mutually exclusive corners. The office machine Dogen kept in his inner sanctum was a custom model Evil-o-Meter, designed to probe a person and pass judgment on their pH balance of moral righteousness. As guessed, this medieval contraption had previously diagnosed Sayid as a bona fide Evil Being, causing Dogen to want to do the right thing and make him dead.

It was nothing personal, just part of Dogen’s job description. He was placed on the Island to hold the scales in balance, and luckily for him, he’s got a handy dandy machine that makes moral determinism as simple a matter as flipping a switch and watching to see where the needle lands.

On his righteous right hand, Dogen wears a gleaming silver bracelet. On his sinstre, or wicked, hand, he wears a fingerless black glove.

It’s a little disconcerting how simple this has suddenly all become. What are they telling us? Black is bad and white is right? Seriously?

Sayid defends himself against the verdict of the Evil-o-Meter by saying that neither man nor machine can tell what “kind of man” he is. So what kind of man is he? Using our new parallel story world to compare and contrast, we get to ask another question as well: what kind of a man is OtherSayid?

In any reality, Sayid is the kind of man who loves Nadia.

According to Omer, he’s the kind of little brother who he still counts on to choke his chickens for him.

And although he claims otherwise, although Nadia does what she can to persuade him away from violence, OtherSayid is still the kind of man who kills with ease.

Of course, when it’s Keamy’s insipid mug that’s getting waxed, it’s hard to pass judgment on Sayid. It’s not as if killing Keamy can ever be a bad thing. There’s just something satisfying about watching that gigantic Gary Busey/Chris Walken love child bite the big one.

OtherSayid’s story is different from the OtherStories that we’ve watched in recent weeks. He didn’t contemplate his reflection in a clear mirror, as his friends had done. Instead, there was only a passing glance of his distorted image captured unexpectedly in Nadia’s front door glass.

OtherSayid was an interrogator for the Revolutionary Guard, just like Original Sayid. He was still fearsome and violent. Still a passionate lover separated from the one he loves. There were no radical departures from his story as we knew it, except of course that he’d apparently manipulated Nadia into becoming the wife of his brother, and it’s unclear if the two had ever bonded in a torture cell, the way we’d seen them do. Unlike the previous Other-flashes, Sayid’s story seems much the same. He is still an assassin. He doesn’t rise above. He doesn’t conquer his demons. He doesn’t solve his problems. We can tell that OtherLOST isn’t going to be merely a mirror story of redemption, because there isn’t any redemption there for Sayid.

The mirror parallels weren’t as strong this week. The pattern of symmetrical character centrics was broken. This episode was called Sundown, which mirrors the name of its Season One counterpart – House of the Rising Sun – but it was Sayid’s episode, not Sun’s. However, symmetry was not completely abandoned.

Just as Ben Linus had helped create a massacre in Dharmatown, his life partner in contract murder, Sayid, helped create one in this episode.

And when Ben came to find Sayid by the bubbling pool, it was a revelation to him just how completely Evil had claimed his once and future assassin.

Evil was the theme of the week. Dogen tells Sayid that the Man in the Monster is “evil incarnate”. Then he sends Sayid out to kill the Evil Thing. Many seem to believe that Dogen was lying to Sayid, that he really intended for the Thing to kill Sayid. Maybe he was hedging his bets, and hoping that whatever happened, at least one of his problems would go away.

If that’s what he was doing, then he guessed wrong. Sayid used the Magic Dagger and tried to stab the beast, but the Monster is not like his whiteshirted brother. He’s a perfect impersonator, a mirage of a human being. He may have real feelings, but unlike Jacob, if you stab a Smoke Monster, he does not in fact bleed.

He also does not kill Sayid. He’s not even that angry about being attacked. Instead, he benevolently offers to give Sayid whatever his poor tortured heart may desire. If you stay on his good side, it seems like the Monster can be quite a kindly friend.

Sayid is convinced in a flash to jump over and join up with Old Smokey and he kicks off the kill party with some coldblooded retribution killing in the same pool he was himself murdered in.

“And thine eye shall not pity; but life shall go for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.” – Deuteronomy 19:21

As the episode ends, the army of the Monster has grown manyfold, and we watch as the Evil Undead leads his flock back into the jungle. It was one of the best endings of any LOST episode ever. Eerie, creepy and strangely beautiful.
Watching the characters step over the dismembered bodies, watching them walk in a slow motion ballet towards their leader, all to the tune of a dirgelike version of Catch a Falling Star … it was breathtaking. I rewound it and watched it five times.

Unhappy spirits that fell with Lucifer,
Conspir’d against our God with Lucifer,
And are for ever damn’d with Lucifer.
– Marlowe, The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus

The song, Catch a Falling Star, is not idly chosen.

We know it as the song that Claire’s absentee father used to sing to her on his visits to her as a baby, as the song Aaron’s airplane mobile chirped out in the cradle that had been prepared for him, the song Claire wanted his future mommy to sing to him, the song Kate did sing to him. It’s Aaron’s song and Claire’s song. But hearing it echoed in such a mournful style called to mind something else.

In Isaiah 14:12, there is this passage: ?”How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! “ Lucifer, the word for “morning star”, was the first damned angel that fell from Heaven. Biblical scholars will argue whether Lucifer is Satan, or the Devil, or just the most prideful angel thrust out of Heaven by the Lord, but the core concept here is that Lucifer is a baddie. That’s not in dispute. And the version of Catch a Falling Star that played at the end of this episode sounded a whole lot like a hymn of praise to the Lord of the LOST Underworld, Mr. NotJohnLocke, the Smoke Monster.

The question we’re being forced to deal with on LOST now is this: If the Monster is indeed an evil, vile thing, if he’s really “evil incarnate”, then what does that make Jacob? We can’t really call the Monster Evil if there isn’t some counterpart moral entity that represents Good, can we? Evil isn’t Evil unless it’s defined in terms of its Other. So, is Jacob all that is Good?

Let’s review. Jacob has been using a lighthouse to seek out Candidates, in order that he may manipulate them, each one individually, to emigrate to his hellhole of an Island home. He does this in order that he may use them in some fashion, to do some thing that we still don’t understand, and that none of them understand either. He does this knowing that his bloody brother will in all likelihood recruit them, and that their odds of survival are approximately 1 in 360, and that they are far more likely to end up as a smoking corpse than they are to ever see their loved ones again. So, the first question is: How can someone like him be a Good Guy?

Jacob, as we know, wears white. His Monster friend wears black. That brings us back to LOST’s earliest metaphor, the simplest symbolism known to man.
Jacob seeks his candidates with a lighthouse, a bright place that ascends to the sky.
The Monster keeps track of his recruits on the walls of a dark cave, an underworld that one descends to on ladders.
When Kate finally discovers her long lost friend, Claire, the poor girl is babbling to herself in the bottom of the snakepit.

Kate is thrown down into the pit by the arrival of the Smoke Monster.

It parallels the way Sawyer’s ladder broke loose and thrust him down into the Smoke Monster’s cave.
Claire, we now know, is a devoted acolyte of the Monster. But Kate knows none of this. She is overjoyed to see her longlost friend.

She has no freaking clue that the girl she has heroically devoted herself to saving is now a murderous lunatic. In her blissful ignorance, Kate seals her fate with Claire, by confirming that she did in fact “take” Aaron. It’s possible a more judicious word choice might have helped matters, but then again, given Claire’s state of mind, it probably wouldn’t have made any difference.

Kate is so screwed.
Claire’s alliance with the Monster does not appear to be a healthy relationship. The first appearance of this pair outside the Temple made them look like two jackals sizing up their prey.

Claire has been claimed, infected, whatever. So has Sayid. Who claimed them? Who infected them? If it was the Monster, why did it happen in Jacob’s Temple? Because it is Jacob’s Temple, right? I think they’ve implied as much. The Monster was being kept out by the circle of ash. Or by Dogen’s existence. Or by a combination of ash and Dogen’s existence. Does anybody really understand this?

Once Dogen was dead, and Sundown arrived, the Monster was free to penetrate the Temple walls and go wilding.

He killed anyone who hadn’t taken him up on his generous offer to join him or die. Kate, by hiding in the pit with Claire, was spared. Or maybe she was spared because she was a Candidate. Only I can’t tell if she’s still a Candidate since her name wasn’t shown on the wall and her Jacob touch wasn’t revisited when Smokey explained the cave to Sawyer. Is she a Candidate but not a Recruit? Is she as confused as the rest of us?

I don’t know, but I was happy to see that she remembered to snag a rifle before she joined the pod people. I have a feeling she’s gonna need that.

What plans does the Monster have for Kate?

He looked her up and down and seemed to be sizing her up very carefully when she came out of the temple, looking dazed and confused.

This group is headed back to wherever Jin and, most intriguingly, Sawyer, are being kept on ice. How the Monster makes use of having Sawyer and Kate together in his camp is a plotline I’m down with. Bring it on, and while you’re at it … please don’t keep Sawyer offscreen for two episodes in a row ever again, mkay? Thx.

Like everyone else, I’m trying to understand the symbiosis between Jacob and his Monsterly twin. It reminds me of how, in the Old Testament, Yahweh and Satan often passed their time by rolling dice with the lives of human beings.

It started with Adam and Eve, when God gave Satan carte blanche to try and tempt them to do wrong, and ended up getting them banished forever from paradise. It continued with the story of Job, where Satan asked God to make a little wager and see if it would be possible to turn the heart of the world’s most righteous and God fearing man, a prosperous and contented dude named Job. God thought it might be fun to watch the Devil toy with one of his human playthings, so he told Satan “Behold, all that he hath is in thy power.” Got that? God, the “Good guy” in the Bible, voluntarily unleashed Satan and all his unspeakable Evil upon a perfectly innocent person. For a test.

Job passed the test. Even though all his oxen and his asses and his sheep and his servants and his sons and even his camels were brutally taken from him, even though he got covered in sore boils and had to sit in his filth scraping off the scabs with a broken potshard, Job remained faithful to the Lord and praised him nonetheless. Job was clearly not a Man of Science. He was the ultimate Man of Faith. And in the Bible, in the Old Testament, that is all that God wanted from his human toys. He was the Puppet Master. Theirs was not to question why, theirs was just to do and die … and not to bitch about it.

It’s a kind of “morality” that makes no sense to our ultra civilized psyches, but it’s the kind of morality I think we may be seeing on LOST in this grand finale season. Like Yahweh and Satan, Jacob and the Monster are running a battery of tests on their candidate-recruits. And the test appears to start with a Choice. Or at least the pretense of a choice. When Sayid re-enters the Temple after meeting with the Monster, he offers the inhabitants there a Morton’s Fork of a choice. They can either stay in the Temple and be slaughtered, or they can leave and join up with the Monster who would gladly slaughter them. Most choose to leave, some stay and die.

Now, Sayid himself is acting on the basis of the choice the Monster has offered to him. The Monster is forthright with Sayid. He offers him the simplest and most desirable thing of all. He offers him “whatever your heart desires”. Really, you can’t beat an offer like that. What Sayid’s heart desires is that Nadia should live.

It raises an interesting point. We have seen that in OtherLOST, in fact, Nadia is alive. Sayid can see her, he can talk to her, he can care for her children.

But he can never have her, ever.

On one level, it looks like Sayid is punishing himself, as he tells Nadia, because a bad man like him does not deserve the love of such a good woman. But on a different level, is it possible that the Sayid we are watching in OtherLOST is the Sayid who is living out the bargain he made with the Monster? Is it possible we have glimpsed the meaning of the parallel universe? Is everything we’re seeing in OtherLOST the result of the bargains and the deals that the characters have made, or will make, with the God and the Satan of LOST Island? It’s a new possibility.

Making deals with the devil is another time honored tale. The most famous such deal was made by Dr. Faustus, when he was tempted by Mephistopheles to sacrifice his immortal soul if only his dearest wish might be granted.

In the original medieval version of the story, Faustus ends up being torn apart when it’s time for his soul to be claimed. It’s a gruesome story where his brains and guts end up splattered about his library and his twitching limbs thrown upon a manure pile. It was intended as a cautionary tale warning against anyone ever thinking that there might be some kind of upside in dealing with the dark side.

But on LOST, it’s not only the devil who is making deals. Jacob is double dealing as well. He has offered Dogen his own kind of Faustian bargain.

In return for the life of his son, Dogen had to come to Craphole Island, dress up in a samurai suit, and guard Jacob’s temple against the ravenous beast. He would never see his beloved child again. That was the price and the penalty for driving drunk and getting his boy almost killed.

We’ve seen the same kind of bargain given to Juliet in Season Three, although as always with Juliet, it’s hard to see what she did to deserve such cruelty.

Having been recruited by Jacob’s emissaries (I think), Juliet found herself stranded on this cursed Island. She begged to go home, but she was offered a deal instead. Her sister could be cured of her cancer, her nephew could be born healthy and whole … but Juliet herself could never be there to see them. This kind of bittersweet win/lose type of deal seems hardwired into the mechanics of how the Island gods operate. Even Dharma offered a blissful new life to its damaged recruits, in return for their being isolated from the world and those they loved.
Is there a difference between the deals that Jacob offers versus those offered by his opposite? I’ve read some intrepid theorists out there trying to find the distinction. Perhaps Jacob offers his candidates the kind of choice that allows them to somehow do right and improve their circumstances. Perhaps the Monster only offers his recruits the kind of choices that perpetuate the cycle of misery for them and those they love. Perhaps the Monster exploits weaknesses, while Jacob tests strength of character. Perhaps. But I wonder.

“And oftentimes to win us to our harm, the instruments of darkness tell us truths; win us with honest trifles, to betray’s in deepest consequence.” – Shakespeare, Macbeth

We know that Jacob is a manipulative bastard, but how far will he go? Was Jacob the architect of the infamous Wishing Box that brought Anthony Cooper to the Island to be killed? Did he give Juliet’s sister cancer just so he could manipulate her to come to the Island? Did he plan for Dogen’s son to be nearly killed, just so he could manipulate his father by saving him? When did he start manipulating his candidates? Is he the reason Hurley won the lottery, the reason Christian Shephard came to Sydney to drink himself to death, the reason Sawyer killed the Shrimp Guy? Just how deep does Jacob have his claws into these people anyway? And why didn’t he help Dogen, who had faithfully carried out his will? Not to keep beating the same drum, but how can such a creature ever be called “Good”?

What’s more, if Jacob isn’t Good, then how can the Monster be Bad? The Monster talks of freedom. Jacob’s manipulations have stolen the Free Will of his candidates, and the Monster seems to think he’s restoring that. Of course, his choices aren’t any less manipulative, and to make matters worse, he’s a bloodthirsty animal who seems to exult in mayhem and chaos.

Whatever we think of Jacob, at least he doesn’t seem to be in the business of disemboweling innocent redshirts. Are we dealing here with two competing evils, where Jacob is just the lesser one? Are these two guys basically Worse and Worser?

In the story of Faustus, the doctor is tempted to the dark side by being offered his heart’s desire, just like Sayid was. For him his deepest wish was to have more Knowledge than anyone else in the world. To the medieval Christian mindset, apparently, it made sense that Knowledge was an evil thing. In the Bible, Satan engineers the destruction of Adam and Eve the same way – he tempts them with knowledge. Interestingly, we see the same pattern emerging on LOST.

When Sayid goes into the jungle to confront the Monster, the first thing he says is that he wants – you guessed it- Answers! Not that he gets any, and he’s easily persuaded to want something else, but that’s what he asks for at first. When the Monster tempted Sawyer he did not offer to bring Juliet back, as he offered Nadia to Sayid. Apparently that is not Sawyer’s deepest desire. Apparently the one thing that Sawyer really wants is … Knowledge.

And the reason Jack goes ballistic on Jacob’s mirrors is because he’s so enraged that Jacob won’t tell him what the hell is going on.

The quest for Knowledge does not seem like an Evil to us. We think of it as a good thing. But maybe that’s why we’re all so confused. Maybe the root of all evil, at least in the mind of LOST’s writers, is the search for Answers. Maybe they want us to shut up and stop begging them for ANSAS!
Perhaps the Old Testament mimicry goes deeper than we suspect. Maybe everyone who wants answers is going to end up with some kind of hellfire and brimstone punishment. Could it be? Is that what’s going on here? Is that why this show gets more confusing every week, the closer we get to the end?

Who actually claimed Sayid? The Temple folk were genuinely surprised at his resurrection. How did Jacob’s Temple create a new disciple for the Monster?

Did Dogen think the Monster would kill Sayid? Does Dogen know the Monster can’t kill Candidates?

Who are all these redshirts that have been living in the Temple? And this Cindy chick with the children. It’s been years now. Is there ever going to be a reason for them to be here?

Why did we see Jack Shephard at the hospital where Sayid’s brother was taken? Was that just to inform us that Omer lives in the same L.A. neighborhood as St. Sebastian Hospital, or was that a way for Matthew Fox to get his quarter mil per episode payday?

And speaking of paydays, how sad is it to see the wonderful Yunjin Kim still being reduced to just one sad “Jin?” per appearance? Didn’t this character used to have a storyline?

And how about Jin showing up in Keamy’s restaurant? Random!

Where did Ilana and the rest of her Scooby Gang escape to when they pushed through the Stargate magic portal? I hope it’s someplace cool!

Why did Kate go back to the Temple? Didn’t she just say she wasn’t going to do that?

What did Kate see in the Smoke that howled above her when she was in the pit?
Did she look into the eye of the Island the way Locke did in Season One? Did she also find it “beautiful”? Has she been turned as well or is she just in shock?

When NotLocke and Claire, exchange little smiles and nods at the end of the episode, is that Monster code-speak for “yes, you can kill her now”?

Did Jacob put something in the water last week when we saw him crouching there?
Does that mean Dogen won’t be claimed? Did Jacob just get tired of Dogen and decide to let him die because he didn’t need him anymore?
Why didn’t Dogen throw Sayid into the same pit where he threw Claire, since he knows both are similarly tainted? Better yet, why didn’t he just kill the Evil Thing when he had the chance?
Given Sayid’s decisive move towards the dark side in this episode, should we be revisiting the clues perhaps contained in the pre-season Last Supper picture, where Sayid occupied the traitor’s spot?
It’s interesting to see that all the original Losties to Locke’s right in the picture – Claire, Sayid, Sawyer and Kate – are all now in the camp of NotJohnLocke. Does this mean Jin is the only one who can still hope to be saved?

Maybe we should stop trying to figure out the answers. Maybe we should just enjoy the ride, because whatever quibbles one might have with the story, an episode like this one is first class entertainment. There’s nothing else like it on TV and maybe there never will be again. It’s just that I didn’t even realize until I started to write this recap, that in all the years of watching this show, I’ve never been more LOST than I am right now.

The cards are being reshuffled, the players are moving again around the board. All we can do is come back next week and see what game they feel like playing with us then.

From TVFrenzy:

  • Funback Joe

    Nicely done!

    • Lennyg

      The Old Testament is increasingly looking like a good guide for major themes. Lost Jacob resembles Bible Jacob in so many ways – stealing Esau’s birthright via a bargain for food, contrast and enemy of his brother (MiB) and of course Lost’s ultimate theme of daddy issues. Bible Jacob actually tricks his father into given him Isaac’s blessing. Isaac himslef was sacrificed by Abraham! Bible Jacob even manages to strike bargains with G-d himself. None of this is black and white, mostly bad choices by Esau/MiB and craftiness by both Jacobs. There are other parallels such as Jacob’s favorite son is Benjamin and he hangs out in ancient Egypt for a while. There’s lots more: Jesse (Jack) is David’s father. David’s son, Solomon builds the First Temple. The island underwater? I’m thinking it’s going to be like Noah’s flood.

      • Lennyg

        I meant of course Isaac was NEARLY sacrificed.

      • Benmanben

        People on the show have been saying episode 15, Across the Sea, is going to be really weird. I think Michael Emerson said it had something to do with when it took place, and that it was extremely unusual. He basically said it wouldn’t have any series regulars. I wonder if it will be an old biblical episode.

      • redondofuentes

        Joseph was Jacobs favorite son, and he spent time in egypt, not benjamin. Ben was brought later at the request of Joseph. Benajmin(ites) wind up being pretty bad doods in the OT narrative.

    • Benmanben

      I don’t think Jacob is evil.
      I think they all serve an important purpose.

      Anthony Cooper on the island was just smokey.

      The magic box is about Schrodinger’s Cat box.

      • Hansgruber

        Locke’s father was not Smokey. Since, Smokey can only impersonate people who died on the island or whose corpse were brought to the Island (Ilana S6e3). The idea of the Island being a Schrodinger’s box is brilliant thou!! So, if we imagine the island to be a philosophical Schrodinger’s box,not in physics terms,then if one can believe without doubts then that which one beliefs can occur. This would explain Jacob and Smokey’s powers and the numbers- and why Dharma had the stations and how they wanted to change Vanzetti’s equations. Still leaves other plot question that would be fun to know!

        • redondofuentes

          what about dave? or walt?

          • angjen0816

            Dave…wasn’t a real person

            Walt… i say he was the actual walt. I think walt has the power of astral projection.

  • jamesepowell

    A few questions. Are the Others human? Are they alive or some kind of zombies? Are they good or, at least, not evil? If they are not good, living humans, is killing them a bad thing?

    I question whether they are living humans because almost all of them appear to be in the 20-40 age group (Zach & Emma excepted) which would require that they all arrived on the Island within a very short range of years. And most of them would have witnessed repeated arrivals of new people who became Others some time after arrival. Only Cindy, Zach & Emma appear to have done this from Flight 815.

    I question whether they are good because I am not aware of anything done by the Others that could be described as good. They seem to be zombie members of a cult, the purpose of which remains unexplained.

    • naultz

      I’ve always wondered why the losties traveled through time on the island, but the others did not, except for juliet. why did Richard and his crew not jump through time like our losties? is it because they are the living dead, or just part of the islands “soul”. I would assume the temple others did not experience the jumps through time either. but this could be a clue to the others true nature and relationship with the island

      • icy_one

        Probably has something to do with what 1977Richard said to Kate and Sawyer: “If I do this, he will always be one of us.”

  • Nomteticus

    Brilliant review as always, Fishbiscuit! I’m surprised you aren’t making money for such a good writing, like outher people with far less clarity or imagination are (the two Docs for instance).
    I also believe that the flashsideways are the endstories of our characters, and that they happen as a consequence of what is happening now on the island, and not the bomb blowing. In this case, I think it’s safe to say that MIB wins, since Sayid got what he wanted (and so did Claire, Sawyer, Jack, Hurley and most of the others, not Kate though).
    And it’s a thorough look into the Biblical good and evil, and indeed we might be facing such a thing here, but we could also be having some eastern influenced thinking with the duality of good/evil in every spirit, so maybe Jacob and MIB are two faces of the same coin and not two competing entities, which may be why one can’t kill the other, but we’ll see.
    Businessman Dogen made no sense, and the Others don’t make much sense, since they are apparently devoted to protecting the island at any cost (and the Temple others seem hardcore,not like the consumer society doomed Otherton Others) , but most of them switch sides at the face of danger.

    • Hansgruber

      It seems that you might be right and black and white do not represent good and evil but yin and yang- so that being so… then as you stated the flash-side is an epilogue and it does not matter if people get killed or not ,on the island, the only things that matter is what deals they made and of course that the one which takes Jacob’s place now does not have a side-flash life (even if we saw one for them)

    • Can we please avoid taking potshots at other writers? Fishbiscuit is awesome, as are DocArzt and Doc Jensen. I think it’s a shame that we compare these writers over opinions about a TV show. At this point, Fishbiscuit said one thing that all of us can agree on: we’re as LOST as ever. So, how can we be so rude as to accuse others of not being “clear” or “imaginative?”

      Sorry to get on my soapbox here, but I’ve been very frustrated as of late reading these comment sections and seeing the overwhelming negativity towards some of the writers (or even the show itself). What has made LOST so special is the fan community; now that we are in season six, we should be celebrating, not tearing down.

      Enough of my frustrations. Fishbiscuit, once again you’ve given us a great post (I loved the animated Jack-face picture). Thanks for all of your hard work trying to help us all piece together this gigantic and amazing puzzle of at TV show.

      • bplenc

        finally! you spoke my mind!

  • Annie

    How come Jack and Sayid didn’t recognize each other from the plane – they were saving Charlie together?

    • Great point. I thought the same thing myself. Perhaps Sayid was just so caught up in dealing with his brother’s “mugging” that he didn’t recognize Jack. I know when I’m caught up in doing something, I don’t always notice what’s going on around me.

      • minnie swirl

        I agree. They looked at each other and it looked like Jack might have had a flicker of recognition but at that moment they were busy with other more pressing matters, so they probably didn’t have a lot of time to stop and say, “Hey man how ya doin, whatcha been up to?” I know if my loved one had been admitted to the hospital with a serious injury I wouldn’t stop to make small talk with a person I met in passing on an airplane.

  • You have a rather shallow understanding of the Bible there Fishy. Otherwise, nicely done.

    • Flockeness

      May I ask in which ways? Not trying to defend her opinion or yours, I really don’t know 😛

      • Twitchy

        ***** Five stars for your nick!

    • spinflip

      That’s what I was thinking too – shallow understanding of the Bible, but a talent for writing.

    • MoniquE

      Just because someone doesn’t worship the bible doesn’t mean they have a shallow understanding. I think it means they think on their own. I don’t see the bible as anything other than a fairy story, so it doesn’t seem shallow to me. probably its different for religious people, but I think it’s untrue to say anyone who isn’t religious is shallow. Maybe they’re actually less shallow and can’t take fairy tales as truth.

      • Katie

        I wouldn’t consider myself a religious person at all, but I think it’s very important to remember that the Bible is very different things to different people during different times. Even when it was written, the Bible was a political, legal, and spiritual text. So it’s important to be very aware that any story from the Bible is going to have at least two or three different layers to it, and it’s usually a bad idea to write it off as either literal truth or antiquated nonsense.

        The story of Job, for example, can totally be read exactly as you’ve read it – a story that emphasizes the importance of blind faith and passive acceptance of suffering. You can also read it, however, as a story that deals with human epistemology and the general inability to have a comprehensive knowledge of the universe – but also the ability to make what you can of what you have or to keep hope in the face of a whole lot of unpleasant stuff.

        I guess what I’m trying to say is that even stories that seem like they’re about black/white dichotomies (biblical or otherwise) almost always have shades of grey thrown in there as well.

        • Hansgruber

          Interesting, That many people claim to have this deep understanding of the Bible but never bothered to read the original text in Greek and Aramaic (would have to take the time learn the languages.. so is not that important to them??)-just translations. Oh I do not say “that the translators were inspired spiritually” cause then hundreds would have to be inspired and in that case we all are and their would be no need for holy texts! Any text inspired or written by GOD would have no flaws and no human being could find fault with it. To think otherwise is to insult GOD.

    • marc

      boo you suck

    • redondofuentes

      ah… good times here.

      imfromthepast… I would agree with your assessment, but to a point. fishbiscuit does gloss over a lot of the detail and purpose of the OT stories. That might be more of a shallow recap/review rather than understanding. We have to keep in mind, that though the biblical narratives get jumbled around a lot in LOST, they often are very far off of their original meaning/message/blah blah… I’ll cut her some slack, but to your point, this might be the only bible some of these people get/know, and it does violence to the text to not represent it appropriately.

      MoniquE… no one should “worship” the bible… it is after all just paper and binding. But the Word of God, that is a different story all together. Yes your atheistic/unitarian/agnostic mojo comes through quite clear, but so does your ignorance. If you had anything less than a shallow understanding of God’s word, you would be absolutely blown away at the extent God has gone to to reach You through it. You see, many dismiss the bible as fairy tale… only, that is simply your opinion because of ignorance. You can not argue against the existence of God. You can not argue about the occurrences of the bible, or that the bible itself represent the inspired word of God, from over 40 different authors, over thousands of years. You can not argue about how God proves his word by telling the future from the past, the end from the beginning. You can not even dispute prophecy by other so called prophets with their less than complete accuracy of prophecy. You see, there is a consistency of message and revelation cover to cover. Thousands of prophecies have been written, hundreds have come true, none disproven… hundreds still to come… but you wouldn’t know of such things because you don’t even have a shallow understanding of the word become flesh. Do you?

      fishbiscuit… to the “God of the OT”, ie badass as you call him. Many do not get past the headline-grabbing passages that suggest God is a ruthless dualist. But, further examination always reveals a consistency in God’s nature… that is He is righteous and just. How can God demand the seemingly heartless extermination of the Canaanites? How can that be a loving God? read about the nephilim… and the demonic corruption of the human race. They inhabited modern day israel. Sound pretty far fetched, eh? but MoniquE you’ll have to rely on reading more than the LOST boards for that deep understanding. Try Genesis 6 through Joshua, sprinkle in some Samuel while you’re at it.

      and lastly… Hansgruber… your comment sounds very heady, but Greek and Aramaic eh? how bout Hebrew, we are after all talking about the OT here, right. The bulk of the text is Hebrew>Greek, the NT was greek written during Aramaic speaking time . Don’t presume that the integrity of the message can not survive translation. If you do… I presume you are unfamiliar with the process the Greeks went through to create the Septuagint. Fortunately, a good student now has the tools to read a translation or two, do word studies on the original text and cross reference the brightest scholars commentaries all from within the same website. Heck, you can carry all of that knowledge in you pocket on an iPhone! (plug). I recommend reading it in english once first, King James is a great place to start, then go topical and rip into exegesis.

      I find it funny that you write of human imperfection… your supposition is that because there are variances in translations, that all biblical texts were man-written, thus not God written/inspired. I find it funny to read in Hebrews (the english version of course) that chapter 11’s great cloud of faithful “men” were all used by God, but were all very flawed in their own regards(Jacob was one of them). God delights in using flawed people to bring about his perfect will. That might have more of an impact on the whole Jacob/MIB discussion.

      Don’t let your perceptions about scripture be the barriers that keep you from it.

      • MoniquE

        How’s this? Don’t offend me by trying to preach your religion in my face. If it does the trick for you, fine and dandy. But you have no right to call me ignorant for not sharing my beliefs, any more than I should call you ignorant for having them. I could easily say offensive things to you, because it’s all loony tunes to me. But please get off your pious high horse and stop shoving your beliefs down my throat. Being hyper religious doesn’t give you the right to insult others.

      • Jimmy Zer0

        I wish I still believed in magic. It must be awesome.

    • I meant just what I said, “Shallow” as in “Not Deep”, or as in “Concerned only with the surface”.
      A lot of people read parts or even all of the Bible and walk away with a first impression of it. They don’t look further or study it. Some of these people have agendas or preconceived notion and are just looking for a couple of excerpts to prove their opinion du jour.
      A prime example of this in this article is the following quote:
      “He helped murder little boys for making fun of Elisha’s bald head,…”
      A surface reading (i.e. shallow) of the incident referred to here would most likely result in a comparable understanding that a “blood-thirsty” God sent a bear to kill a couple of “little boys” just for innocently making fun of a bald-headed man.
      But is that a fair description of what happened?
      Not really. If you look deeper into the account you will realize that the so-called “little boys” were actually young men and there was a gang of 42 (!) of them. This was no small group of innocent children making fun of a bald man, but rather a gang of young men mocking a prophet of God.
      In today’s world ambassador of foreign nation are routinely afforded honor and respect due to their station. Would not a chosen prophet of the creator of the Universe deserve no less?
      Another telling detail is Fishy’s use of the word “murder” here.This was an execution, not a murder. God’s defining qualities are love, justice, wisdom and power. This is just as true now as it was in Elijah’s day. God is the creator of the Universe, including the earth and the people on it. He has the ability to read hearts and judge a person’s true worth.
      All this being said, if Jehovah read the hearts of the 42 young men ridiculing his prophet, and by extension God, and through the exercising of his justice and wisdom found that the 42 men were deserving of death and subsequently used his power to execute them, who are we to criticize?

      • I said in another post days, maybe weeks ago, that truly great writing is qualified by its levels of understanding with layers of meaning for the academic, the educated and the uneducated. Great writing speaks to the human experience we all share. Our perceived experience happens on many different levels and at different points in our lives we can consider perhaps deeper meanings in that experience that was lost on us at the time.

        It is sad that SOME people approach the bible based on a perception based on an experience most often encountered during youth when concrete thinking and childish attitudes befitting alazonian dunces breeds contempt.

        Such an attitude lessens perception and exposes arrogance.

        I’m old enough to know my limitations, to reach beyond them, to understand my failure and move on.

        I no longer know the truth behind faith. But I know this: There is a creator and anyone that argues otherwise is forever cursed with a morsel of stupidity no matter how brilliant they might be. Which BOOK, which PERSON knows the truth of that creator? None, although all have a bit of truth within them.

        It is within us that we discover that truth, no one can tell us or show us otherwise. It must be discovered.

  • “This whole thing isn’t feeling exactly airtight these days. But I guess that’s ok. I can deal with a little human error and lapses in common sense, so long as they get the big things right. And I don’t think anything is much bigger than the theme of Blackness and Whiteness, and where the LOST story is going to come down on the ancient questions of Good and Evil. What I’m starting to wonder is if we’re going to get an intelligent exploration of the human dilemma or if the whole thing is about to descend into a morally simplistic comic book farce.”

    Yes, with the breaking of the Fourth Wall – Hurley calling Randy a douche – and other such instances, the sloppy continuity mistakes, the rush to end Lost, to somehow tell the “original” core of the story, The Darlton more than once have admitted to changing many aspect of the show.

    And it shows.

    What’s amazing, though, is that you and the blatant Humanist lost fans seem so stunned – and confused!?! – about the simple black vs. white, evil vs. good theme of the show.

    You want so badly to snub your nose those “medieval” and

    No one says, I believe, I hope, that seeking knowledge is a bad or “evil” pursuit. It is of course in the WAY that knowledge is sought that it becomes, or betrays, a weakness of…character.

    TELL ME TELL ME TELL ME – or what!?!

    You see, that DEMAND for answers, answers which are there already or exposed later need only patience and REASONING – SOUND reasoning – to be discovered.

    It is called enlightenment.

    And it is so hilarious to see all those who have out-‘thunk’ themselves discover that the answer is simply…

    – there is EVIL in this world, and GOOD…which side do you pick!?!

    • Funback Joe


    • Wanda

      Well, the frustrating part isn’t just the black and whiteness of it all. It’s that they’ve claimed this is about destiny versus free will.

      But free will takes a hit every time–every episode. Of course those of us who don’t believe in an all powerful benevolent god will protest. It’s enough to make you want to join NotLocke’s team.

    • MoniquE

      LOL So whose the good guy? Jacob? If they try to sell that nonsense as the point of Lost all along, they’ll be laughing stocks.

      • For all the insipid talk about Jacob being bad because he manipulates people, give me a break. It’s a part of everyday life. From our parents to our teachers to our employers an ongoing grand conspiracy BY ALL OF US exists to influence our Free Will decisions.

        Sometimes manipulation can be a good thing.

        • Hansgruber

          Like when Jacob instructed Ben Linus to kill his father and the whole Dharma town?? or when Jacob distracts Sayid and Nadia gets run over by the car..ouch!! Living in your community must be like living within the House of Borgia.

          • Again, we don’t know that to be the case. Ben clearly confessed to UnLocke he’d never talked to Jacob.

            Consider that Sayid would’ve died with Nadia if he hadn’t stopped to talk. It APPEARS that Jacob may be giving him an opportunity for redemption and happiness with Nadia.

            Again, at this point, we don’t know anything for certain….

    • Smoked-Locke

      It’s so much better to have the evil vs. good battle rather than the insipid triangle nonsense. Thank god it’s been sidelined for 3 episodes.

      • Wanda

        Unless you see them as the same thing. Except bad is always sexier than good.

    • Cutter XXIII

      “You want so badly to snub your nose those ‘medieval’ and…”

      Wow, good point. Wish I’d thought of that.

      • Well, Fishy used medieval and ultra-civilised and other terms that insinuated that people of past ages were INCAPABLE of sound reasoning. The Greeks could do it 1500 years and more before those “medieval” Christians, so I think it’s pure hubris that makes one feel superior to the past.

  • Wanda

    Great stuff, especially your doubts at the beginning, with Ben and NotLocke in the temple and the various typos we’ve been interpreting. I hope it doesn’t just come down to black and white and Christian shepherds. Especially because the good guys (Ben is a good guy?) are such boring hypocrites.

    I’ll stick to my guns that both Claire and Sayid died, as confirmed by Miles. Smokey brought them back to life, perhaps the way Jacob brought Locke back to life after the fall. I was reminded this week of the episode in Jacob’s Cabin where “Jacob” beseeches Locke to help him–and something invisible whirs through the cabin like a tornado.

    Nadia was still alive in the original timeline on 9/22/04; Locke installed her security system. Deal or no deal, no one’s actually had to revive her yet.

    What happened to Richard? I thought he was going straight to the Temple after he ran away from Sawyer and NotLocke, two episodes ago. I don’t mind less Sun, but Sawyer MIA, or fully clothed, is a crying shame.

    • jamesepowell

      I was wondering if Richard might change as a result of Jacob’s death. He said he was “this way” because of Jacob.

      Sawyer told MIB that he wanted to get off the Island. He wasn’t needed for the attack on the Temple (I want to say cleansing of the Temple, but reject the notion of MIB as Jesus Christ). And, too, it might be that MIB believed that Sawyer might be alienated if he witnessed the attack.

      My guess is that Sawyer is busy about some task that MIB gave him to prepare for departure.

      • Wanda

        Yeah, maybe Richard will turn back into whatever he was. Last seen he looked almost like a mouse or a rabbit scurrying away.

      • But “cleansing of the Temple” is a good point: I’ve been thinking this season that all these followers of Jacob get a lot wrong. Ben would be a good example (if he ever was following the dictates of Jacob – he did admit he was faking it, but then asks Jacob “what about all those lists”, so I’m not sure). Dogen and Lennon may not really have an idea of what they’re supposed to be doing so their…tactics, attitudes – such as their manhandling and somewhat belligerence – may not reflect what Jacob intends.

        In fact, perhaps Jacob is merely affording them to OPPORTUNITY to figure out what they’re supposed to do by developing their CHARACTER. We all have behaviors and attitudes that are bad (NEGATIVE for you humanists out there) and need changing. Jacob affords them a way to change – IF they can figure out how.

        It’s like the so-call “Christians” present and past who have made many ugly and terrible decisions in the name of LOVE (His true message). But others have acted and behaved Christ-like (as much as possible in a material world). Does that NEGATE His philosophy, make it a bad thing?

        Plenty of humanists would say YES!!! They believe only through tyranny that humans can be forced to be nice and behave.


        • MoniquE

          Handsome Smitty you sound like a christian fundamentalist. I seriously doubt Fish or any intelligent “humanist” as you put it believes that tyranny is the only way people can be good. It’s this kind of nonsense that makes it impossible to discuss things with religious fundamentalists.

          • I am not, the way most people use the term, a christian. Nor a fundamentalist, although isn’t EVERYONE with a strong belief in either the liberal or conservative GENRE a fundamentalist?!?!

            Get real.

            How is it IMPOSSIBLE to have a discussion when someone calls a spade a spade and a club a club? You want to discuss ANYTHING seriously, with me, then do so.

        • Wanda

          Ben never saw Jacob, but Richard did pass down orders from Jacob. I always assumed Ben recruited Juliet, but it now seems it really was Jacob all along–not just the man behind the curtain.

          Makes me think again about who can see Jacob or the Man in Black.

          • I don’t think we know that for sure. If Ben was taking notes from Richard, then why did he confess to UnLocke he’d never seen Jacob.

            Assumption is the mother of al F$&*#ups!

  • seenitlovedit

    Just to let you know. Love your recaps. However in this one you are mistaken. In the enhanced version we were told that the names in the cave were also written by jacob.

    • Jeremy

      Since the notes in the enhanced episodes are not prepared by Darlton but by an outside company, I am wary of them. During the 3/19/09 podcast, Carlton said, “We do not have time to regulate the pop-ups and we do have a couple people who work for us in the office who…kind of monitor those things but they should not be regarded as canon.”

      • seenitlovedit

        but dont you think that they are paying more attention since the Daniel’s Mother mistake. Also, no one ever said that the cave was MIB’s either. Thanks for the information, but I am going to stick with what the show says and not jump to conclusions

        • icy_one

          But you are jumping to conclusions: the conclusion that the pop up notes are canon, despite evidence to the contrary, and the conclusion that there is greater scrutiny after the spoiler of Eloise.

          And logically, just because no one has said the cave belongs to the MIB does not mean it doesn’t. No one has said it belongs to Jacob either.

  • Katie

    Just pointing it out (because I’m very picky about this sort of thing), but people during the medieval era weren’t anti-knowledge in any sense of the word. I know you were probably being a bit tongue-in-cheek with that, but it always makes me sad when people assume that their was no intellectual development during the Middle Ages.

    I wouldn’t worry too much (yet) about the good/evil dichotomy being too cut and dry. It seems like the writers are having fun setting things up like that, but also sort of subverting them at the same time. Jacob/MiB are both being presented as very morally ambiguous characters, and it’s other people who are trying to pigeon hole them into categories like Good/Evil.

    • Glue your eyelids

      It seems like the writers are having fun setting things up like that, but also sort of subverting them at the same time.

      I think – andmost of all, hope – that you are right. It’s like in S5, when we were hammered with the concept of “whatever happened, happened”… and then, surprise! The Sideways world happened.

    • I agree with you on this. The writers have always been very subversive. Why would they stop now?

      These confusing elements in the narrative (the continuity errors notwithstanding) will be explained and later we’ll all go “A-HA!” when we learn what’s going on.

  • wingedpotato

    I think what the writers have set up is not so much a good-vs-evil storyline, but rather “the devil (MIB) is evil but God (Jacob) ain’t so hot himself either” (which has become a tired trope to me) to extol the true hero–puny humans! Clash of the Titans, if you will. So I wonder if the ending will be the players turning their backs on the gamemasters.

    I’m still hoping the real end as Lost wraps up is that the remaining “free” Losties will try to redeem their friends. I refuse to believe Claire and Sayid are beyond all hope.

    • Wanda

      Really, you want to see sanctimonious Jack trying to rescue Claire and redeem Sayid?

      I’d rather watch the evil people try to corrupt the good ones.

      • wingedpotato

        Yep, I’m one of those rubes who actually has come to care about all the characters–even Jack and Kate! I know I’m a bit of a minority in Lostdom these days. I must be mentally deficient.

        • Wanda

          Nothing to apologize for. There had to be a few romantics (and Jack fans) out there.

  • Benjamin

    Since the season has started I’ve had a very difficult time going through a recap or article without getting upset. Don’t get me wrong, I love Fishbiscuit’s articles and recaps, but it seems all anyone can do is complain about continuity errors or things just not making sense..Like honestly, have we been watching the same show the past 5 years? To some degree its always been confusing. I think, like so many have said before..lets just have faith in the writers, and not worry about the details that leave our brains so concerned with the present. Darlton have brought us this far and I don’t think they would disappoint us this close to the end.

    On a side note, I do think it’s rather disappointing that Sun’s character has been chopped down so much lately..She needs another “Ji Yeon”.

    • MacCutcheon

      Agreed!! Just relax people. Jeesh.

    • bplenc

      thank you! i said this on “eye m sick” the other day and was promptly asked to leave! pfft.

    • Richard

      Definitely! When loyal Lost fans start questioning the logic of the show, I try to remind them that this show has always had: characters that run into each other on a giant Island, characters that never have to shave, and a character thats made of bloody smoke!

      At what point did we decide to stop suspending disbelief?

  • This was fantastic. I’ve enjoyed your reviews every week, but this was a cut above.

    • Eve

      Totally agree.
      ..Want an apple, dude?

  • Gus

    Another excellent recap from Fishbiscuit. Yours are genuinely the best.

    • shauniqua


      • meems

        thirded. I look forward to this every week!!!!

  • poop mcgee

    “pass judgment on their pH balance of moral righteousness”

    awesome line

    poop mcgee likes this

  • Pen

    Looks like all the ones who have sided with Flocke have terrible lives in OtherLost but those who side with Jacob have good (Or better) Lives, like Dogen and Jack.

    Are this ‘Flash Sideways’ Nothing more then Flashforwards?

  • spinflip

    >We know that Jacob is a manipulative bastard

    You use ‘manipulate’ quite often. But in fact, this is just the thing the Devil wants us to believe – that God is manipulating people against their will. And thereby he tickles the human pride – we want to believe that we are independent and can achieve anything on our own.
    But maybe Jacob is actually helping people to find their purpose in life, you never know.

    • Smoked-Locke

      Good point, that is, if there exists a god, which can neither be proved nor disproved.

    • apackofmonkeys

      I really don’t understand any of the cries of “Jacob is a manipulator!” With the exception of the Lighthouse, I haven’t seen that he’s set up any of the bad circumstances in which people find themselves in. With both Juliet and Dogen’s deals, there was a bad situation that they found themselves in (in fact, Dogen’s was his own fault), and Jacob is giving them a complete choice: Jacob will step in and heal the loved one if the person works for him. They could choose “no” and be left with the original, un-Jacob-touched situation. But they chose yes instead. Complete free will.
      The lighthouse is the only situation I’ve seen where Jacob actually manipulates people, and even then its goal is to bring out the good and noble in the people involved. Is that bad?

  • Eural Joiner

    I’m not too worried about the whole good vs. evil dichotomy being the root of all “Lost”- I think the equivelancy of both sides was established (at least in Sayid’s mind!) during his last conversation with Dogen. Dogen makes a deal to bring back a loved one and agrees to ruthlessly rule the Temple (his first words in the series was “Kill them all” or something to that effect). Sayid makes a deal to bring back a loved one and agrees to ruthlessly cleanse the Temple. Jacob “touches” candidates in their past which sets up certain choices he pushes for his benefit, NotLocke does the same on the Island in his own way for his own ends. The writers may later make a much clearer distintion between the two but for now I’m only seeing a simple comparison based on methods (one light and kindly, one dark and menacing).

    And I love the idea that as we approach the end we are all more “Lost” than ever before! Most perfect title in the history of television in soooo many ways 🙂

  • Fandango1

    He came back more like the way that Buffy came back. He came back wrong.

    Bwahaha! That’s pretty much what I was reduced to when trying to figure out the difference between pre-death and post-death Sayid. Please, please let the explanation be something more compelling that depression after being brought back from heeaav-en.

    Your recaps are always insightful and interesting, but I agree with Adam – this one is a cut above. The analogy between our Losties and those hapless souls in the bible who were set up, tested, used and tortured by a capricious god and his once-favorite angel is spot on. Whether it’s about good vs evil; order vs chaos; peace vs war; or sex, lies and videotape, the Losties have been conscripted into some long-running fight between two entities who appear to have no genuine regard for any of the individuals on their incessant and creepy lists.

    At the moment, I choose to believe that MIB and Jacob are stand-ins for Damon and Carlton, and WE are the hapless Losties who’ve been pulled into their web. They say we matter, they pay lip service to the things we care about, but do they really? The jury is still out on that one. Even though I’m having doubts, I am finding this season entertaining in a bewildering sort of way. There have been moments of pure cheese, like Juliet’s dragged out death scene in LA X – it would have been so much more powerful to leave us with the traumatic image of her falling. OTOH, there have been moments of brilliance too, and the creepy slow-motion montage of MIB, Wrong-Sayid, Claimed-Claire and the minions walking out of the temple was one of them. I wanted to yell at Kate to RUN! but I’m hoping Sawyer will do that for me.

    Thanks for an excellent review. Looking forward to next week.

  • Mr_Rob

    is there someome one here that is from MN? I keep seeing screen caps with the kstp logo?

  • Korsican

    Just curious, but what do you guys think: if the end of the show is lame? would you feel that the show was good because it provided good entertainment or a wash because the finale did not make sense or answer your questions!

    • Katie

      Yeah, that’s a really good question. I guess it depends on how hypothetically bad we’re talking about. But I’d say that regardless of how it ends, I’ve had a lot of fun with Lost over the years, and that counts for something. I’d be disappointed if it had a bad end, but that wouldn’t invalidate 5 1/2 years of enjoyment.

    • bplenc

      i can’t, after having been RIVETED for 6 years, blast the whole show based on how it ends – this show has entertained us like no other ever – week to week – for 6 years – can the last 10 minutes make you change your mind? not mine.

    • minnie swirl

      I’ve been entertained, engaged in thought provoking stories and introduced to some truly great characters so I’ll be satisfied. The journey has been too fun for the destination to be a complete dud.

  • Tugs

    The show has gone down hill since Licke became notLocke. That is a fact.

    • Stacey

      OMG, you’re so right!

    • bplenc

      but you still don’t even know WHY this has happened!!! UGH.

      • icy_one

        Of course you know why this has happened. It was part of the long con. Look at it from a chronological perspective.

        1954: And older John Locke arrives at the Others camp, tells Richard he is their leader and that Jacob sent him. Disappears not too soon after.
        1974: Richard meets James Ford in the Dharma camp, who tells him not to give up on John Locke. Richard has so far met John twice with little success.
        2004: John Locke crashes on the Island. The Others border on worship. This John Locke does not know anything about the Island or the Others or his role. Richard meets Locke, and tells him that they have been waiting for him a long time, fulfilling Locke’s need to be “chosen” or “special.” He embraces his status.
        2007: FakeLocke tells Richard to tell “himself (the real Locke) that in order to save the Island he will have to bring the others back. In order to bring the others back, he will have to die.
        2007, off-island: John Locke commits suicide to fulfill the face prophecy.

        Smokey needed Locke to die so that Locke’s body would be brought back to the Island and he could use it to take Locke’s position among the Others. With this position he could manipulate Ben to kill Jacob.

        • bplenc

          so that justifies his comment that the show has gone “downhill”?

  • John

    I STRONGLY OBJECT to the writers damnation of the God of the Bible-

    Lost is a perfect title for this because Job understood and blessed God in the end. What you did, and what many other Losties do, is they forget that in the end Job will be in heaven in unimaginable bliss. Life is described as childbirth in which the mother cant bare the pain but screams of joy follow to the point where she completely forgets the pain.

    As Locke said..I had to go through what I went through–I wouldnt change it because it got me to where I am now. If what You go through gets you to accept God as ruler–then bring it on. Would you rather God leave us in our vomit? Each life is tailored to bring multiple opportunities to turn to God–if it can be through blessings–Im sure God would do that–but if only through tragedy–then it must be that way or you would have no chance.

    With all the realities unfolding in Lost its surprising it never occurred to You that THIS World might the best of all possible worlds in which people turn to God–that without the suffering and without God being hidden(using faith as the vehicle)–very few would be saved. Maybe God on CNN would only make people choose him out of fear as Cindy did with Smokey. You see, we dont see that God may be smarter than lil ole us because we actually hate any authority over us and will go to great lengths to escape him.

    Maybe Jacob takes his orders from God..and in the end–what has transpired was the best of all possible worlds for the losties. My friend..there are other answers to ponder besides the atheist and liberal company line. The last thing I’ll say is you dont have to be a great thinker to know any of this–God is as close as your bedroom tonight–but how many arrogant would ever actually ask for the truth?

    • MoniquE

      I strongly doubt that Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse are proseltysing religion to us.

    • I have a hard time believing any one religion or concept of God would be presented on this show as being true. After all, there have been many faiths represented, as well as nods to older religious cultures. Dharma nods at eastern mysticism; the Egyptian influence is obvious as well.

      It’s easy to read your own ideas into LOST (I know I certainly do), but like the Bible, the show is open to interpretation. One person may perceive Jacob as good, another as evil based upon their preconceived notions of what is “good” or “evil.” I think that is what Fishbiscuit is talking about when it is mentioned that LOST’s strength has always been in the moral ambiguity of the characters. There has never been a definitive black and white side — everything’s been in shades of gray. This is why some of us might see Jack as a hero and others will see him as a grade-A douche.

      It may turn out that Jacob and the Evil Locke are indeed good and evil. Who knows? I doubt, though, this would be because of any religious beliefs of the writers.

  • OtherJacob

    I had noticed the same thing about the “Lost Supper” image. There is one thing about it that wasn’t mentioned. That being that Alpert and Illana are on the Lockeness Monster’s left hand side too. Can we expect them to be turned eventually this season too??

  • Mark

    I’m remembering that Dharma video that showed us the two rabits. At the time, we thought this was time-travel. In hindsight, was it instead showing us the island’s power to allow travel between universes? Remember the fear at letting the two rabits touch? Could it be that the alt-verse candidates are going to be coming to our island?

  • Richard

    “where all these people were a few short days ago when the Smoke Monster was haunting Ben in the Temple basement, since they’ve made a rather large point out of the fact that, until this episode, the Smoke Monster couldn’t get into the Temple”

    The Others could have been just about anywhere else on the Island, couldn’t they? By no means does the Temple look like a permanent residence anymore than the cabin did.

    • naultz

      ben and the smoke monster never went to the temple. remember that ben mentioned that their was a large wall/barrier protecting the temple, a perimetar fence protecting the borders of the temple. i believe that the wall/barrier along with the smoke monster was the initial protection/security system for the temple. smokie never went into the temple, just around the temple. As seen in episode “this place is death” , we see the french team from 1988. Three of the team members, including rouseau,montand( the dude that loses his arm), and Jin follow the smoke monster to the entrance of the barrier, not the actual temple. when young ben was taken to the temple by richard, they entered through the door. When ben entered with Flocke and when the french team followed smokie, they went through a hole in the ground, not into the main entrance. I believe jacob used smokie to protect the temple from outsiders.

      • Richard

        That’s what I thought was a possibility as well. I wasn’t sure if Ben and Flocke were walking through the “barrier” or under the temple.

        In either case, both are acceptable explanations.

  • Nuggan

    There is one difference in the “deals” Jacob and MIB make with people. The deals that Jacob makes are selfLESS acts made by the person (Juliet and Dogen sacrifice their needs for their loved ones) and the deals that MIB makes are selfISH acts made by the person (Sayid and Sawyer want something for themselves).

  • CV

    Keep up the great work, Fishbiscuit. Your posts are always an enjoyable read. I look forward to them every Saturday. Thank you for writing them.

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