Monday, June 30, 2008

Are There 2 Bens Like There Are 2 Bunnies?

Another Jay and Jack caller theory. This caller speculated that Ben can't return to the Island because turning the wheel produced two of him, one on and one off Island. Ben off Island can't return because of the possibility of colliding with Ben on Island. I personally am not a great fan of this theory, but what does everyone else think?

Friday, June 27, 2008

How Does Daniel Know About The Secondary Protocol?

There's something really squirrelly about Daniel Faraday in the finale. It seems clear he knows that Ben is going to move the Island. But it also seems clear he doesn't know the freighter is going to blow up because he's intent on reaching it with as many people as possible. Any ideas how Daniel knows this?

My first idea is that Daniel has been trusted by Widmore with documentation from the Dharma Initiative about The Orchid. Daniel has information in his notebook about that station. And he knows what the phrase secondary protocol means. Before this the only people who had access to this secondary protocol were Keamy and Captain Gault and they both needed to be present to access it.

Or could it be the case that Daniel is time traveling? That he's seen the Island move before? And if that's the case, why doesn't he stay with Charlotte? Surely any log-carrying guy could drive the Zodiac at a 305 heading. Why does Daniel feel he must do it especially after all the radiation he's been exposed to?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Who Has To Go Back?

Vote for all the people you think must go back to the Island.

And why would all of them need to go back? Locke never told anyone but Jack that they didn't need to leave. He never made the case to Kate, Sun, Hurley, etc. And he had lots of opportunity with Hurley this season. And he knows what Kate did and that the Others don't want her for that reason. So why do they all need to go back now?

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I'm Not A Fan of Popular Mechanics

That's a broad generalization. While I'm not very mechanical, my husband is the scientist in the family; I'm the linguist and historian -- we make a deadly Trivial Pursuit team, it's actual Popular Mechanics Theory of Island Movement that I'm not a fan of. The analogy they draw is that the Island is in location x and that turning the frozen donkey wheel was equivalent of building a bypass around it. Staying on the bypass you never run into town, but the town (the Island) is still in the same location.

But I'm not buying it. The helicopter crashed within 5 km or miles of the Island. They did not seem to drift for long before Penny's boat picked them up. Surely, they used Penny's boat to go back and forth over the site they believed the Island to exist. Surely they looked for some evidence that Jin or others survived the freighter blast. Or are they so self-centered (Seinfeldian in that self-centeredness) that they immediately began motoring for the Indian Ocean? I just don't see how in an ocean without roads they can't find that Island if it is still there, bypass or no bypass.

Now I can understand the idea that the Island is somewhat like Narnia in that it is not in fact in our world and that turning the wheel forever reinserted the back panel of the wardrobe. But if that's the case, I feel like they played fast and loose in the latter half of Season 4 what with Doctor Ray and his fresh wound. By the end of Season 4 it felt like you could come and go from the Island in any direction and you'd get there, though there might be consequences you didn't prefer. What's more you could clearly see the freighter from the Island and vice versa and you could see it all from the helicopter. No interference.

This also really makes me wonder how the Dharma Initiative ever figured out how to safely come and go from the Island. Did Alpert teach them? Did he teach a Hanso?

As for what idea I do like, I think the Island literally got sucked into the ocean and will pop back up somewhere else. That could lead to very bad things. I also love the idea that this explains how the Black Rock got to the center of the Island. The Island popped up under it. I also like the idea that the Nigerian drug plane could have gotten there similarly or that it could have been sucked in from the Tunisian desert as a polar bear was spit out. After all Ben moved both physically and in time, so why shouldn't that also be the case with the Island?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Whoever moves the island can never come back.

Why? My favorite theory, and I've heard this a couple of places is that turning the wheel has exposed Ben to such a high level of radiation/magnetism/other that trying to return to the Island would lead to death a la Minkowski and Eloise, constant or no constant. Why do you think Ben can't return to the Island? Or do you think he can?

And here's a corollary to the question. There are those who speculate that Widmore turned the wheel in the past. Do you think he did? And if he did, why was he looking for the Island again if Island movers can't come back. And what about Christian Shephard and Locke? Did they move the Island too?

Monday, June 23, 2008

How Cool Is This?

Check out Wordle.

Mummy Penny?

I heard this one on Jay and Jack too. Why didn't they leave Aaron with Penny and avoid the whole Kate was 6 months pregnant when the Marshall picked her up lie?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Were Charlotte and Daniel on the Up and Up?

I heard this on Jay and Jack. A caller speculated that Daniel and Charlotte lied about what they were up to in The Tempest. Lying?!? On LOST?!? The caller thinks rather than rendering poison that Ben could use inert, Daniel shut off a barrier that existed between the Island and the Freighter. I like that idea. After than episode it did seem like people went back and forth between the two much more easily than they had before that event. What do you think?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Lost IT

I just finished all 1090 pages of Stephen King's IT. I decided to read IT because it was recommended by another person on a LOST board. While not the most overtly LOST-connected book in the Stephen King pantheon, there are some similarities between the two.

One clear connection has to do with the method of story-telling. There's real time stories, flashbacks and differing points of view constantly in the book. Part 5 in particular changes back and forth from main characters in the past to main characters in the present to subordinate characters in the story. And there's often a blending of past and present. As one character reflects: Is something really stapling the past and present together here, or am I only imagining it? A regular mobius strip.

There's also a circularity or repeating of patterns that take place throughout the story. But rather than literally having things repeat, patterns repeat but with the circumstances varying every 25 or so years. What's more the main characters who realize they need to repeat this pattern can't remember what they had done before. Their memories are blank when it comes to key items, and part of the story is them regaining their memory in order to accomplish the task they need to accomplish.

This repetition notion intrigues me looking forward to the O6s return to the Island. Will they have to try to re-do something? Will they have all their memories of the Island or have they successfully repressed them? And of course Ben's incredible ability to outplay everyone still makes me wonder if he's somehow repeating a pattern.

Another huge thing similarity between IT and LOST is the nature of the bad guy. IT's bad guy can appear to you as whatever your personal worst nightmare is. That's clearly reminiscent of what the Island or Smokey is up to when it appears as things from your personal experience. And in IT others can see your nightmare just like Sawyer saw Kate's horse.

According to the book this type of creature exists in many cultures -- a Glamour in Gaelic, a Manitou by the Plains Indians, a Tallus or Taelus in the Himalayas, an Eylak in Central Europe and Le Loup-Garou in France. While I think Smokey is manmade (and out of control), it's interesting to think of a culture creating a machine that would duplicate this sort of monster.

Also looking forward to the return of the O6 to the Island, the children in IT found that 7 was a magic number that gave them power. I guess if you count Locke and Ben, but not Aaron and Ji Yeon you could get to 7 Island returnees in LOST. Of course you could also get 7 by adding Ji Yeon to the O6. While 7 is not one of THE Numbers, I think we're about in need of some magic numbers. Maybe 7 will be one.

Place is key in IT as it is in LOST. The pull and power and magic doesn't exist outside of Derry, Maine. The Island on the other hand seems to have much more influence outside of its physical sphere. How much of that is real, how much is psychological remains to be seen.

As a side note for those who've read Watership Down as well, Derry, Maine reminds me of Cowslip's Warren. Derry has made an unacknowledged deal with IT same as those rabbits. Every so often loved ones will be lost, but in general there will be prosperity as long as those losses continue.

And finally -- there's a love triangle. ;-p (and reproduction problems.)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Locke, Leader or Ultimate Scapegoat?

Jeremy Bentham shows up in the real world and tells Jack that "after I left the island, some very bad things happened. And he told me that it was my [Jack's] fault for leaving. And he said that I had to come back. But I'm thinking the bad things may come from Locke's presence more than Jack's absence or possibly even from Ben's absence. After all who did Christian Shephard and Claire tell to move the Island -- Locke. But Locke didn't move the Island, Ben did.

It reminds me of how Locke was supposed to take care of Sheriff's Deputy Eddie, but didn't. How little Locke was supposed to pick the things that belonged to him, but didn't. How he was supposed to kill his dad, but didn't. How Locke was supposed to push the button, but didn't. Once again, Locke is given a task, and he can't even find the flowers.

Now arguably, Locke didn't have the know how had he gotten into the Orchid to move the Island, but maybe the Island would have given him further instructions. But if Locke had been able to get into the Orchid in a timely manner and moved the Island (never to return) he would have trapped Jack on it. So whose fault is it John?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Charlotte Speculation

Credit this post to a comment made by Twinkle over at The Lost Community, and her curiosity about Charlotte. There's No Place Like Home gives us two clues to Charlotte's story. First Miles says she worked a long time to get back to the Island. Then she tells Daniel she's looking for where she was born.

The idea that Charlotte was born on the Island is the most intriguing idea to me. Does this mean she was conceived off the Island, say on a DI Senior trip to Cancun? Or is it the case that at some point in the DI's history women could safely conceive and give birth on the Island? And if it's B, what changed things? I suppose it could also be option C, conceived on Island, born off like Ji Yeon.

I'm not a giant fan of the various theories linking Charlotte to Annie primarily because it's going to require me to suspend disbelief about time once again. Charlotte being Annie is the least likely to me since in that case she should be as old as Ben absent some giant time issue which has yet to materialize despite incessant internet theorizing. I'm more inclined to accept Charlotte is Ben and Annie's daughter although that makes the Senior Trip theory most likely. And as Twinkle pointed out it makes the idea that Ben was so gung ho to raise Alex more explicable. The fact that Ben would shoot Charlotte doesn't bother me. Ben's recitation of Charlotte's CV sounded like her googled up life story, not one Ben knew himself. But I think I'd prefer her to be a Goodspeed or some other child of the DI. Maybe Annie's little sister. Timewise that theory works best for me.

Monday, June 16, 2008

We Have To Go Back . . .

The more I think about it, the more I think it's not the case that the O6 have to go back to the Island, but that they have to go back to the Island by going back in time. The reason for going back so far has been held out as "bad things" happened when they left and therefore they have to go back. And the thing I can't figure out if why going back after the bad things have happened helps.

The other thing that makes me think that going back in time is necessary is Ben's idea that he can go and they need Locke's body. Ben tells Locke that a person who moves the Island can't return. So does Ben think he can take the O6 and dead Locke back in time before he turned the donkey wheel and beat the universe at its own game? Can you go back to that place in 4-dimensional space-time before you turned the wheel?

And what point in space-time would you go back to? I guess they are looking at a point after 815 crashed if you need the O6, but does that mean you need Desmond too? And what about the kids -- Aaron, Ji Yeon, and Walt? Can you take a 3-year-old Aaron back to when he was 2 months old? A born Ji Yeon to when she was in utero or even earlier? Or do Aaron and Ji Yeon get a pass which might explain Kate needing to go back, but not taking Aaron.

Talk about your alternate universes and time lines! But I'm willing to buy that sort of thing at least in a final season. I just still can't figure out why go back after the cat's been let out of the bag, and how Ben's involvement would work.

Friday, June 13, 2008

So What The Heck Is Up With Claire?

Here's the big problem I have with Claire being killed in the rocket attack. What makes her an instant zombie when we've seen tons of other people on the Island die without the same effect? Boone died and it took a while to get him in the ground. Ana Lucia especially took a long time to bury. She laid there in the Swan Hatch while Libby bled out. But if Claire isn't dead, what is the deal? Any ideas? (And would a zombie need a band aid?)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Wishing I had a Wizard and Glass To Figure Out LOST

Just like LOST, I'm now more than halfway through Stephen King's Dark Tower series, and I still don't know what's going on. Though I do think I have a better handle on Roland's quest than the quest of Ben or any of the 815ers. Things from book 4 Wizard and Glass that remind of LOST follow.

Guys, Where Are We?

First a brief summary of where we are in our quest for the Dark Tower. Roland, a gunslinger from Gilead has put together a posse of sorts to search for the Dark Tower. That group or ka-tet consists of Eddie, former heroine junkie from 1980s New York, Susannah, a woman who can't walk because she has no legs from 1960s New York, Jake, an 11-year-old boy from 1970s New York, and Oy, a billy-bumbler, a sort of dog from Mid-World. The group is currently riding on a monorail train named Blaine and they are engaged in a riddle contest. If the group wins the contest by stumping Blaine, Blaine will deliver them to Topeka without killing them. If Blaine wins by having all the answers he will kill them all by driving at rapid speed into a wall. Now, on to the interesting, at least to me, things.

Each One of Us . . .

One of the main themes of all these books is the concept of ka, a word that means most simply fate but also includes a notion of sovereignty and inevitability. But that doesn't mean who we are and how we act doesn't matter as Eddie points out to Roland when he tells the dour gunslinger "[y]ou can't help your nature." p. 60

"The gunslinger considered this carefully, and discovered something that was wonderful and awful at the same time: that idea had never occurred to him. Not once in his whole life. That he was a captive of ka--this he had known since earliest childhood. But his nature...his very nature..." p. 60

This concept of both fate and nature surround our LOSTies. Locke feels it is his fate to be on the Island, to protect and serve it, but he can't get past his giant patsy nature. Jack has known since childhood that he has to learn to let it go, but he can't.

This passage and Roland's view of ka particularly reminds me of Season 1 "a sacrifice the Island demanded" Locke:

"So [Roland] had done [made a choice], believing in his youthful arrogance that everything would turn out all right for no other reason--yes, at bottom he had believed this--than that he was he, and ka must serve his love." p. 429

Guys, When Are We?

Time and its unreliability, alternate worlds with both alternate wheres and whens, and doors to those worlds play a huge role in The Dark Tower series, but the LOST PTB have ruled out alternate worlds as an explanation for the show, so I won't dwell on that too much. But I will mention that this book includes Bermuda Triangle like places called thinnies which are implied to be doors between worlds. Ones appearance is attributed to an earthquake. Some similar opening could exist on the Island due to the volcano we've heard briefly about.

When Did You Ever Tell The Complete Truth?

The bulk of Wizard and Glass is a flashback like the one we in Meet Kevin Johnson. That is it is a flashback narrated by the character himself, so the question of the reliability of the narrator is certainly at issue. Interestingly parts of the flashback that Roland himself could not have participated in were shown to him in the crystal-ball-like glass, but the reliability of the glass's narration should be looked at skeptically as well.

Repeatedly the ball showed Roland and others only what it wanted to them to know in order to get them to act in a certain way, a different way than they might have acted had they had all the facts. Ironically it doesn't lie to them, but it misdirects by omitting key facts and revealing others. 

This selective revelation reminds me of Smokey's encounters with Locke and the dreams on the Island. The LOSTies have been shown some things and they take them to mean they should do one thing, when in fact if they'd had more information they might have done something else entirely. Think Charlie's kidnapping of Aaron.

Ben's refusal to reveal to the LOSTies all he knows acts similarly. As we've debated since the end of Season 3, given what he knows, of course Jack called the boat. No one has told him or shown him anything that would logically make him do otherwise. But as happens with Roland, selective revelation leads to certain actions and later to regret once all the facts are revealed, eh bearded future Jack?

Reliability of memory is also explicitly called out in the book in essentially the notion that it is the winners who write history. Roland and his friends are framed for a crime they didn't commit and Deputy Dave knows it. But as Roland remarks to himself: "It was just part of the frame, and none of these men believed much of it, Dave likely included. Although, Roland supposed, they would come to believe it in later years and tell it to their children and grandchildren as gospel." p. 498 It sounds a lot like Jack telling his O6 story so much that Kate thinks he actually believes it.

Flashes Before Your Eyes

The ability to see the future has been present explicitly in LOST since Season 3 and I believe that Ben has some ability in this as well. In Wizard and Glass we're given a supernatural explanation for a similar ability. It comes in the form of a "glass" which can show you other worlds. There were 13 of these glasses in all, and this particular glass, the pink one, could show you two things, other peoples' secrets as well as some parts of the future.

I know most people don't want to see Ben gazing into a crystal ball, but there is something interesting about using these balls which could come into play in LOST. You can't keep and use these balls all the time because they are alive and hungry. "One begins using em; one ends being used by em." p. 457 Instead of the glass serving you, you serve the glass. The ends and means become tangled.  

I could certainly see something like that happening on LOST. In fact it might explain the true nature of Ben and Jacob's relationship which could have begun by Ben serving Jacob, but clearly seems to be Jacob serving Ben at least until 815 crashed. Maybe something along these lines will lead to Locke's Island downfall as well.  

Some Final Minor Similarities:

In the flashback, 14-year-old Roland and his friends are sent to a backwater community to keep them out of a harm's way. But they describe this time as being sent by their fathers to "meditat[e] in Purgatory." p. 159

Cuthbert is a slingshot specialist.

There are remnants of the past civilization present in Roland's time, and his enemy, Farson is attempting to harness that civilization's weapons to his advantage. There are similar theories out there about Smokey, namely, that he is an older technology that we don't know how to control anymore.

The "wizard" of the book can appear to you as people from your past.

There's a reference to Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, in particular to how much could work could occur in a single night.

The entire last section of the book is a retelling of the scene in The Wizard of Oz where Dorothy's ka-tet encounters the Wizard in the Emerald City. The glass itself and what people see in it are very Wizard of Oz as well.

Roland has very Jack-like father issues. "[His father's voice] was the hardest voice, the one he so often heard in his troubled dreams, the one he so wanted to please and so seldom could." p. 675

And so I'm over halfway to the Tower! Hopefully before LOST ends I'll get there. With 2 incredibly lengthy hiatuses due before that occurs, I have all confidence that I will, but if not "there are always other worlds."

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Did The Zodiac Move With The Island?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Donkey Wheel Has Turned . . .

And where do you think it went? In time? In space? And how the heck are they going to find it again? And why can't they just go back to the coordinates that Penny's boat obviously knows and Widmore himself should obviously know? Do you just set up your own listening station a la Penny? Or do you need to find Mrs. Hawking? Or should Jack and crew apply with Octagon Global Recruiting?

Monday, June 09, 2008

Locke Is In The Coffin, But . . .

Frankly, I never considered that Locke had not in fact died in Los Angeles, but listening to Jay & Jack I heard both Jay and Jack agree that they think Locke is faking his death. Handsome Jack even added that he used Doc Arzt's spider venom to perpetrate the con. So what do you think?

Sunday, June 08, 2008

A Few Thoughts From Prince Caspian

I went to see the 2nd Narnia movie, Prince Caspian yesterday. It's the story of the Pevensie children's return to Narnia a year after their adventures in The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. And of course it left me wondering if I could apply any lessons from it to LOST. Here's a few.

The children have been gone from Narnia where they ruled as Kings and Queens for one year, and they are having a hard time re-adjusting to life back in our world.

In order to return to Narnia (this time) the four of them are together and holding hands.

There's a clear man of science (or at least self-help), woman of faith theme that underlies the story. Spoiler alert -- faith wins.

The main battle of the story takes place between invading Hostiles that in truth belong to a different world from Narnia and the native Narnians.

And there's 2 other key points. First, it takes children to accomplish what needs to be accomplished in Narnia. In the book it says bluntly that Susan and Peter are too old to return again, but the movie nicely rounds it off that they've learned all they can learn in Narnia and now must use it in their own world.

We've often wondered if the keys in LOST are really the kids, first Walt, then Aaron, Zach and Emma and now Ji Yeon. I'm still interested to see if it's Aaron and Ji Yeon and Walt that really need to return and not so much Jack and the grown up O6. After all, Alpert started attempting to recruit Locke at a very young age, and Ben too for that matter.

Finally, twice during the movie Lucy asks Aslan why he can't just show up and save the day as he'd done before. Aslan tells her "nothing can happen the same way twice." What's more you aren't permitted to know what might have happened had you made different choices.

The idea of time recycling has been strongly present in LOST. But I wonder if these rules are the ones that apply. Perhaps in the past Keamy's confrontation of Ben with Alex happened one way and Ben thought it would repeat, but things don't can't happen the same way twice and she died. Or perhaps Ben approached it differently disowning Alex instead of claiming her in hopes Keamy would not kill her, but despite the difference the result was the same.

Regardless, I'm still anxious to see what Jack and the O6 think their return to the Island will accomplish, and if it will indeed be the case that things cannot happen the same way twice, or that might have beens cannot be undone.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

It's Been A Long Time . . .

Well, LOST has been off the air for over 1 week -- only approximately 32 weeks to go. :-p

And I've been "away" even longer than that. I was out of town the week of the finale, and as a result, I'm waaaaayyyyy behind on reading and listening to all the goodies I usually read and listen to post LOST episodes. Of course, with the hiatus staring us in the face, I've got time.

My plan for the off season is to keep posting some fun polls and discussion questions. It probably won't be a question a day, but we'll see how many things we can come up with. I'm also reading LOST books and books that remind me of LOST, so I'll have some of those posts as well starting with Book 4 of the Dark Tower series which I finished back in April, but have not posted about yet. And hopefully, we will indeed get a new ARG to kill some time judging from the Octagon Global Recruiting ad.

And now, with no further delay, here's my first question about the finale:

And be sure to add your comments (spoiler-free please) as to what you think about whether or not we'll see Jin dead or alive in the future.

Peace and Namaste!