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Food for Thought: Locke as “The Chosen One”

By nato64,

  Filed under: Lost, Lost Theories, Uncategorized
  Comments: 17

One of the best things about Season 5 so far, in my opinion, is seeing Locke take charge and accept responsibility for saving the island. Everything has lead to John Locke’s arc being that of “The Chosen One” that can bring balance to the force… or has it? As the leader of the others (post-2005 in island-time) he can now do that. Now, let’s look at a timeline of things as to how he became the leader of The Others…

  • 1954: Richard (playing-the-not so subtle Panchen Lama role) tells the newly-introduced Locke that their leader selection begins at a very young age.
  • 1956: John Locke is born. Richard smiles ever-so-creepily that John Locke wasn’t lying.
  • 1961: Young John is visited by Richard and seems to fail his Dalai Lama test. But Richard doesn’t give up.
  • 1973: Ricahrd sends John Locke’s school a pamphlet for him to attend the “Learn to Become an Other” academy. John refuses, choosing to be prom king/hunter, not the geek/farmer. The question is, what does Richard want? Does he want a scholar/farmer or does he want the prom king/hunter? Or a combination?
  • Early 1970s: Richard found Ben special due to him seeing his dead mother. At a young age, he begins the leadership selection.
  • 1991: Ben assumes the role as the leader with Richard at his side.
  • 2004, Season 1: Locke crashes and his back becomes unbroken.
  • Season 2: The island tested his devotion via Swans and Buttons. He failed and lost faith.
  • Season 3 Locke had a self-imposed quest to keep everyone from leaving (or was it not self-imposed? more on that later).
  • Season 4 John Locke is on the spot to protect the island (it’s arguable if he failed or not. I think Jack is the one that failed by doing his best to get Widmore’s men to kill everyone). In the finale, Ben passed the torch and he became the leader of The Others. We can assume that this meant that Ben also was giving over Locke all the answers to his questions, no longer protecting him from what the monster is or who is Jacob. He left Locke with the ability to find out everything he ever wanted about The Island. Ben felt that Locke had gone through enough and was ready.
  • Season 5 Locke became the sole person that can save The Island by bringing Jack & Co. back.
  •  

    What’s most interesting is that Locke doesn’t really know what The Island is. None of his questions have been answered and at this point it doesn’t matter. He knows what it can do and that it’s special. That’s enough.

    So it seams that Locke regaining his ability to walk convinces Richard that he is special and the one to replace Ben. Before that, he failed a test Richard gave him directly and denied going to a camp Richard designed for him to go. Is being paralyzed pre-coming to The Island and able to walk afterwards enough to prove to Richard that he is The One that can stop Agent Smith? Wait, yes it is. That sounds like enough proof from me.

    Now, onto my theories that fill in the blanks:

    One of the biggest things that has bothered me about Season 3 is not understanding Locke’s exact intention to blow up every means of leaving The Island. He came out of The Swan’s implosion and became intent on destroying every method for Jack to possibly leave. Now that we know John Locke and his rag-tag team of time travelers are jumping around the space-time continuum, what if Locke betrays his own understanding and tries telling his past self that Jack & Co. must not leave. This could be indirectly done with a message or means other than face-to-face contact.

    Back to my opening paragraph, everything has led John Locke to becoming the protector of The Island. But… what if he isn’t? What if John Locke is just a means to an end? Why is it so important that Jack return to The Island if Locke is the leader under Jacob? This, to me, is the most pertinent question we should be asking. Why does the supposed leader have to sacrifice himself to get the O6 back? Wouldn’t that imply that John Locke is key to saving the island but isn’t the one that can do it by himself?

    P.S. Does anyone else want to hear The Island Pledge of Allegiance John might eventually take?

    “One Island, under Jacob, invisible, with DHARMA and Hostiels for all.”

    From TVFrenzy:

    • rick

      john locke is simply a pawn in the grand scheme of things

      oh and i still think richard is jacob

    • Mack

      I know right now there is strong inclination to doubt Locke’s purpose and admittedly their is evidence for this doubt. No question this evidence is being inserted into the show intentionally to keep the audience uncertain about who or what Locke is. I am not going to state my opinion at this point either way.

      It is no coincidence that they show us the items test first thereby letting us assume that Richard was from the future, presented items that would belong to Locke and that Locke failed Richards test only to show us later that Richard was not from the future but the past and that it was Locke who told Richard to visit his younger selves. We are having our perceptions manipulated.

      Locke is the wild card and the writers/creators aren’t going to let us settle into a strong opinion either way until they are ready. Nothing could be gained from establishing Locke’s future prematurely. Keeping the mystery going heighten suspense and keeps us guessing.

      From the very beginning he has been the odd man out, not just on the island but in the eyes of the audience. Friend or foe, hero or villain, saint or sucker are all questions we as the audience are asking about Locke from the start of the show and we are right where the creators want us to be. We are debating in regards to Locke’s character, much like like Jack and Locke between what our hearts tell us or wants us to believe and what we are being presented on the show. Depending on our own personal experiences and preferences we render our verdict.

      It is my opinion that we are in for a dose of irony of epic proportions when it comes to our perception of Locke.

      I would rethink the whole idea that John failed the items test. I think there is more to this than any of us realize. There are still a lot of questions. Let’s not assume he chose the knife because future Locke likes knives, that presupposes he has some knowledge of his future self which would make him special. A mystery still remains, why did he choose the knife/

      It is not so much important that Jack gets back to the island as it is that all of the O6 get back to the island.

      As to the importance of Jack, it is prevalent but I suggest you revisit the Hatch scene in the episode Orientation when Locke is asking Jack to push to button to get a sense of why these two men actually need each other. Hint, it’s all about balance and reconciliation. Reconciliation between the mind and the heart and faith and reason.

      Oh, I’m going to Oahu on March 7th!!!!!

      • I couldn’t agree more.

        • Mack

          I forgot to say that I enjoyed reading this. I wouldn’t have replied otherwise. Thank you for taking the time.

      • rick

        wait if its not so much jack gets back to the island .. why does jack “have work to do”, why does locke keep telling jack he has a purpose and its his destiny .. seems to me theyre stressing jack a whole heck of a lot more than locke

        • Mack

          I never denied that Jack has some grand purpose within the story as I believe he certainly does. As a matter of fact I said that his character is very important. Jack’s importance doesn’t contradict anything I have said in any way. Sure Jack has to get back because he has work to do but the rest of them have to get back as well which means they must have work to do to.
          It is not so much important that Jack gets back to the island as it is that all of the O6 get back to the island.
          As to the importance of Jack, it is prevalent but I suggest you revisit the Hatch scene in the episode Orientation when Locke is asking Jack to push to button to get a sense of why these two men actually need each other. Hint, it’s all about balance and reconciliation. Reconciliation between the mind and the heart, faith and reason.
          What I also avoided was giving a conclusive opinion about Locke’s destiny. Enough evidence has not been given to determine conclusively what his role is and/or will be. Again here is what I said:
          “I know right now there is strong inclination to doubt Locke’s purpose and admittedly there is evidence for this doubt. No question this evidence is being inserted into the show intentionally to keep the audience uncertain about who or what Locke is. I am not going to state my opinion at this point either way.”
          I do think the writers are playing without perceptions a bit, particularly by giving us information out of sequence. Are they attempting to mold our prejudices in a particular way only to turn those prejudices upside down? I think the creators are pretty damn smart so I would answer that question with a resounding yes.
          I think it is short sighted to assume he is the perpetual sucker and that his role is to forever be the person exploited and abused. The writers are smarter than that and I believe they have demonstrated an ability to craft an excellent story arch’s for characters.

    • Katy

      “Wouldn’t that imply that John Locke is key to saving the island but isn’t the one that can do it by himself?”

      You mean like Desmond turned the key in the hatch? So who is supposed to turn the “Locke” key?

      (Lock and key… hmmm.)

      • Mack

        Hmm, interesting.

    • Jacks Back

      Simply stated…

      Locke and Jack are not competing for the same role of leader…

      Jack is Jacob’s replacement.

      Locke is Linus’ replacement.

      • valentin

        I think its the other way around. When dead Christian was brought to the Island he kind of took over for Jacob. So I think he was just a fill in until dead Locke could be brought back. With Locke as the new Jacob Jack will be able to fulfill his destiny and lead the Others.

      • DT

        Ben failed as the leader because he focused on pregnacy instead of the island. We have seen many instances of him being pushed away from the island. Widmore most likely was a leader at one time and was driven away for some reason yet undisclosed. The strict guidelines of being an Other, no flaws, mad skills at everything, and intelligence show that the island needs poeple that can handle its power responsibly. As I mentioned no one we have seen has been able to meet the standards no matter how close they come. In come the Man of Science and Man of Faith, the island needs both of them to rule it for balance. One will always fail but the right 2 people could embody all the island needs. What 2 better people than Selfless Jack and Faithful Locke.

      • Interesting. This connects to the dual-ruler role – one priest and one king – of Israel.

        I can’t get into all the deep stuff like others, but what got messed up is that John was told clearly HE must move the island. Bed did this instead. His reasons are nefarious, I’ll have no truck with those relativists that Ben can be seen as good. He is selfish beyond acceptable standards. Ben saw moving the island as a way to dispose John and return to his role as Leader of the Others. Ben was not doing John a favor; surely that much is clear because we know that John died.

        Just wondering, if John – or Ben or Jack for that matter – are seen as potential leaders, just what is Richard that he is the one that chooses the leader? Is he the priest or the king figure?

        • Mack

          I also wonder about what Jacob or his emissary’s to be more exact, meant by saying that “he” had to move the island. Now it looks like Locke is going to be turning the wheel anyway which begs the question, was he always meant to?

          I like the idea of the dual leader because it is a departure from how the island has been ruled previously, essentially by a sole person.

          • But is it a departure?

            Richard, if he’s always been there, is the actual leader. If an alien – or someone from the future (we obviously won’t need five toes in another couple hundred years) – perhaps he uses a native Leader as a representative of this host world.

            I always assumed Richard came on the wrecked ship. I’m beginning to believe “he’s always been there” as Juliet said, and Widmore is from the wrecked ship. Then again, maybe Richard is from the ship and Widmore from the balloon.

            Oh heck, I suck at this.

            • Mack

              Dude, you don’t suck at this. All this speculation is in good fun and part of the experience. Being right or wrong about something in the show doesn’t even matter. The show is designed to keep us guessing. The show would be boring if everything was clear cut. It is not the destiny but the journey that matters.

              As for Richard, he has to be very old but what culture he came from is a big mystery. We all assumed he came from the black rock because of the way he was dressed but now we know that doesn’t mean much. There are a lot of questions left about why he was dressed that way in the seventies and clean cut in the fifties.

    • DT

      I have a theory a friend and I have been discussing lately. Alpert is Jacob. At some point in the future he will go back in time or get unstuck in time, its hard to guess how the writers will handle this . Jacob is always in the cabin so Alpert will not run into him while he goes about his business on the island. This explains why Alpert appears to be in charge or at least very important but there is always another leader of “The Others”. Whenever Alpert arrived on the island there was probably signs that led him to discover the island’s wonders. Alpert’s reaction to Locke saying” Jacob sent me” in Jughead shows that he know who Jacob is but not how much he knows about him. Imagine Alpert is from the Black Rock and when he arrived strange things began to happen just like they did for the 815ers. Only Future Alpert had left clues that lead Original Alpert to discover the islands mysteries. I think he does not know he is Jacob just that Jacob knows a lot about the island. The clues about Jacob will lead him to whatever it is that caused him not to age so he can fulfill this destiny.

      another theory–

      Alpert only knew of Jacob from ancient writings he found but they held enough clues for him to build the Others society to protect the island’s powers. Then Ben comes along, the only person that has ever seen or spoke with Jacob. What if he is like Walt and can manifest things into reality. Being the master manipulator we have seen he could have created the Jacob we have seen from what he had learned from Alpert. Fooling everone into thinking he is the true leader. Talking to Jacob does appear to be the main thing that Ben has over everyone including agless Alpert.

      • Mrs. Alpert

        I don’t see ‘talking to Jacob’ as an advantage over Richard… similar to John and Jack, Richard and Ben balance each other out… With all the religious undertones of the show, I’d bet that Ben was ousted from leadership because he couldn’t maintain the balance with only him and Richard…. so John, Jack, and Richard will be a better leadership- trinity.