A few technical problems prevented this from being posted nearer to the air date, so I’m going to jump to the chase: I have a deep love of Lost and an overactive imagination, and am not content to watch an episode and wait calmly to see what happens next. Like many viewers, my mind typically jumps into overdrive, trying to figure out anything and everything that might possibly happen (and usually missing the mark, but that’s not the point.)
So I’ve decided to write these things down and share them with whoever cares to read them. Some of my ideas might seem implausible, or completely ludicrous, and I in no way mean to imply that I necessarily believe any conclusion that I may jump to.
If it gets someone thinking; great. If it causes debate: beautiful. If you hate it… we’ll deal with that when we come to it. Feel free to shower my thoughts with praise or rip them to shreds.
One note: there are no spoilers here! Everything comes out of my own head, with little or no evidence to support it. If you read it here: well, it probably won’t happen.
“Dead is Dead.” I’m in it for the mythology, and this one was all for me. Ben, Locke, and Desmond – three of my favorites (I miss Daniel!) And no mushy stuff!
I’m assuming you’ve seen it.
Let’s start with Charles Widmore. The only reason given for his banishment was regularly leaving the island and having a child with an outsider. I have no doubt that there’s something deeper here. My thinking is that Charles just wasn’t a fit leader. Ben alone couldn’t banish Charles – the island, through Jacob, would have its say. It’s pretty much a given that Ben had an active part in leading up to this banishment – serving his own needs as well as those of the island.
The reason that Charles’s banishment stuck and why Ben was allowed to return to the island is manifested through their behavior toward children. Widmore admonished Richard for saving Ben, and insisted that Ben should have killed baby Alex. In contrast, Ben spared Alex (and her mother) and backed down on his promise to kill Penny when little Charlie popped into the picture. The island’s judgement stated that Ben was responsible for Alex’s death, but apparently his good deeds were enough to outweigh his crimes. This isn’t an easy thing to imagine, but we have to try and look at this from the island’s point of view.
When Widmore claims that Richard should have let Ben die, Richard responds with “The island chooses who the island chooses.” After taking Alex, Ben asks if killing the baby was what Jacob wanted, implying that Widmore made the decision on his own. It seems that Widmore might have had his own agenda, or at least made some presumptions about what the island wanted.
“Jacob wanted it done. The island chooses who the island chooses.” We knew that Jacob spoke for the island, but this line seems to imply that Jacob and the island are one. When Jacob cried “Help me.” to Lock in “The Man Behind the Curtain” it might not have meant Help Jacob, but Help the island.
Jacob could be a physical manifestation of the mind of the island. If he is trapped in the cabin, as the ring of ashes implies, that explains why the island is reaching out to others to get things done: Christian in his function as a guide, Locke to move the island (though Ben took it upon himself to take his place) and whatever else Locke is meant to do, and the monster to put Ben in his place.
Speaking of Locke, what did he have to do off in the jungle? And was his timely arrival supposed to put it in our heads that he may be a manifestation of the smoke monster? It would make sense. Christian’s body crashed and vanished, so did Locke’s. He wasn’t there right after the crash, but was found later, standing in the water and looking off into the ocean.
I guess the whole thing hinges on whether you believe that Christian is the monster. I’m going with no. I’d like to think that Christian was resurrected similar to Locke, and is working alongside the monster as part of the island’s “team,” I have no basis for this, it’s just my favorite version of things in my head.
I’d say that Locke was off communing with the island, nothing more. That’s how he knew that Ben had to get to the temple. He’s proven rather adept at it in the past.
Back to Ben (sorry for the jumping around, but everything is interconnected:) he told Locke that he expected him to be resurrected, but told Sun that he had no idea that it would happen. Which is the truth? If Ben admits to being scared, and more importantly admits that something wasn’t part of his plan (the return of Locke,) then that’s Ben being honest. He knew that Locke had to die to get the 06 back to the island, and that the body had to be on the plane to help recreate the original crash, but had no idea that Locke would be waiting for him after his run-in with the oar.
I was bummed when Frank left Sun to return to the crash. I like Lapidus, and with the death of Caesar (what a huge red herring he turned out to be!) I didn’t think that there would be much going on back at the beach. Then Ilana, Bram, and a couple of friends pull out some guns and a giant crate! Now Frank is on his own, being dragged along to who-knows-where.
There’s only two options for Ilana: either she’s working for Widmore or for some unknown third party. Ben’s phone call from the pier would have been enough for Widmore to figure out what’s going on and make sure that his people were on the plane, so it makes sense that Ilana is working for him. He would also have the knowledge that it was Sayid who killed his associate on the golf course, providing Ilana with the perfect story for Sayid (who seemed to be willing, if not happy, to accept the punishment for the crimes that he had committed.)
But Widmore didn’t just put Ilana and the others on the plane, he had her get Sayid beforehand. So both the good guys (whoever they are) and the bad guys (whoever they are) wanted the 06 back on the island. If a war is coming, it doesn’t look like all of our castaways are going to be on the same side.
What’s in the crate? More weapons? A bomb? Some kind of device to use on the island, maybe? Something to ensure that the island is at a particular place at a particular time, so that Widmore can finally return and the real battle for control can take place!
Can’t forget the hieroglyphics! We see Anubis for certain (though I’m convinced that the statue is not Anubis,) and a squiggly thing with what appears to be a face that is undoubtedly the monster. So it’s been around for quite a while, then. Longer than I had anticipated. The island is something special, a sacred place, and the description of the monster as a security system may not be too far off – some kind of force acting on behalf of the gods of the island.
But here’s where I take a few leaps: Richard has been described as someone who helps to choose the leader of the others – the monster is a judge, determining who is to be forgiven and who is to pay for their sins. Richard seems to appear out of nowhere. He’s ageless.
Richard is the monster! Rather, the figure of Richard Alpert is a physical manifestation of the monster.
This idea first struck me during “Whatever Happened, Happened,” when Richard was holding Ben, standing with his back to the temple. There was a moment when I expected him to dissolve into the monster and flow into the vent, taking Ben with him.
Am I right? Probably not. But I love the idea.
One last thing: Ben said, “Dead is dead. You don’t get to come back from that. Not even here.” Taken on its own that doesn’t necessarily mean anything. It’s coming from Ben, after all. But the episode is titled “Dead is Dead,” and I think that does mean something. Locke is back, but he’s not the same man that he was before. And it’s not just his confidence and authority that makes me say that (though its wonderful to see Locke back to his old self.) Just like Christian, I don’t believe that he’s quite as human as he used to be.
I’ll stop now. Let me know what you think. Ideas? Suggestions?