Guest Blog in Which Jordon Looks at Lost as a Parable About Duality & Unity & Finds That Everything, in The End, is Redeemable.

17 05 2010

This episode of MyCrazyLostTheory is being brought to you by the great despoiler, who shattered your regular author’s hopes in relation to a very important theory regarding Smokey’s long con, Hurley’s Ghosts, and a jar of peanut butter.  Even though I’ve apologized, apparently I still have to do my penance, which is to guest host the column this week. 

Hey Jordon... So not mock the Peanut Butter. Charlie imagined it with Claire, then it was there. That is IMO, way more magical than that stupid My Little Pony cave!

 

Pauline (of MyCrazyLostTheory) and I regularly check in on Wed mornings to ecstatically exchange our theories and views on the previous nights info dump that is lost.  Last Wednesday was no exception…although we both started the conversation with a great deal more trepidation than normal.  I’ll sum up my initial feelings thusly:  Watching that episode was kinda like choking back a spoonful of REALLY awful tasting medicine, and slowly finding that the aftertaste is divine and sort of warms the guts.  Reading through various blogs and comments ’round the ol’ net, it appears this is one of the most divisive episodes yet.  I think that is completely understandable.  In a way, viewers are now going to be divided into the old Locke/Jack dichotomy.  Some are happy with a general mystic underpinning, and some need concrete answers.  Until the following theory occurred to me, I was a little bit on the ” oh come ON Lost!” side of the fence.  Now, I think I see the writers long con, and I think I’m in love. 

Or, in other words:  How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love Lost as Star Wars Remake.  Ok, what?  Awkward.  My entirely revamped view of this show is that it’s Star Wars.  Well, at least partly.  In one big way.  At first we thought Star Wars was gonna be about Jack…I mean Luke. But as the series continued, and especially after the crappy prequels, we realized it had been about the MIB, oh crap, I mean Darth Vader, all along.  So this series is about the MIB.  And Jacob.  Of course.  But mostly the MIB.  And his redemption.  How can he be redeemed?  How can such a force of evil get redemption?  Well, Darth Vader blew up a whole fucking planet and somehow we forgave him at the end, right?  Seriously folks, stay with me, I swear this is going somewhere (it’s about now that Pauline is regretting asking me to guest host I imagine…). 

No Jordon, not at all. Keep going... this all sounds quite intriguing.

 

Before this episode, I had a series of huge questions:  What was the smoke monster, what was Jacob, what is the purpose of the Island, and why are these people candidates?  What is the sideways world, why can Hurly see Dead People, etc. etc.  We don’t have many more answers to those questions, but, as the episode pointed out in the cheekiest bit of meta-narrative yet, with each answer there are more questions. 

However, I think we’ve been played.  Here is my big gambit:  There is no Candidate.  Jacob’s entire ‘plot’ has been to redeem the MIB, and get him to accept guardianship of the Island.  No, seriously.  To begin to understand this we have to go back to this Episode, and Mommy Dearest. 

Once upon a time there was a lady who guarded a sparkly cave full of Care Bear magic, which she protected from big bad evil men who wanted to steal its power.  She had probably been doing this for centuries, and was waiting for someone to show up who could take her place.  Hunting boar and looking for poultices can get awfully boring after hundreds of years.  So can killing entire colonies as the smoke monster.  Wait, what?  That’s right.  I think Dear Old Mom was both Guardian AND Smoke Monster.  My evidence for this is direct and indirect.  First off, when she found out that Unnamed Brother had found a way to tap into the energy of the Island, she clearly got that sad look in her eyes of ‘here we go again, I’ve got to wipe out another batch of folks from the Island,’ and next thing we know, the entire village is wiped out…with prejudice.  Everyone is burned, maimed and otherwise indisposed, and also, guess what, the well has been filled in and destroyed.  Could little old Mom have done that?  Could she have thrown the MIB over her shoulder and hauled him out of the well?  Don’t think so.  I think only the Smoke monster could have done that.  Which leads me to wonder if the smoke monster was there in some other form (was the vision of MIB’s real mother the old Smokey showing his hand?  I don’t think so) or that MOM had that power…a decidedly smoke monster like destructive power.  The reason I think she was both, and not that there was another entity already extant on the Island in the role of smoke monster is because of what apparently happened to the source after MIB was sucked down that mystical water slide.  It went black folks, and we never saw it go light again.  Whatever caused THIS smoke monster to manifest caused a very very bad thing.  It was at this point that the Island ceased being the repository for the “source” of all warm and fuzzy (Mom’s explanation of the source and how each person in the world holds a spark of it inside of them is highly Cabalistic/Gnostic) and became instead a cork holding in the evil that was Smokey.   

After destroying the villagers and pissing off MIB, Mommy knew she had to make a choice…she had to pass the torch (which she literally did, by the way!) to Jacob.  Clearly Jacob wasn’t her first choice, but he was all that was left.  The other son had proven that he wouldn’t have any interest in that job, and would most likely just fuck it up.  My guess is that what she passed to Jacob was sort of incomplete, and that she was rushed into doing so.  She couldn’t pass on her full nature.  I don’t have the back up for that right now, although maybe it will come to me.  Basically, Jacob got all of the Guardianship without any of the Smokey aftertaste.  Now mom has become mortal, has passed that torch, and can die and be at peace.  She kinda wants this.  It’s pretty clear. Thankfully MIB is happy to oblige.  That dagger we’ve seen so much of this season finally ends up killing one of the supernatural characters after all…it just happens to have happened a long long time ago.  Jacob is super pissed, and decides to work out his feelings of inadequacy by throwing brother into the Care Bear cave.  Now, Mommy warned them about this, explicitly, saying it would result in a fate worse than death.  Clearly she knew about it in detail, and probably from experience.  I think it’s important to note, at least for my theory, that the MIB was mortal when he was cast in.  It was Jacob who had been given the gift of immortality by drinking the wine (the same wine by the way that he gave to Richard to drink…Richard, who became…IMMORTAL!).  So when a mortal man is cast into the Care Bear cave, all hell breaks loose, literally.  His soul is stripped from his body, and transformed into the smoke monster…or the other side of Mom’s split personality.  In mythic terms, this is the separation of the unity into duality.  And what do dualities always long for?  Return to the source, to be rejoined, to make sweet sweet love.  Ok, well, a bit too far there.  What used to be a singular role of protector is now split into two beings. And one of those beings is corrupted, pissed, and wants the hell off the Island.  And yet if we really look at the smoke monster over the course of the show, it has served as a sort of Island Security System for much of the time.  Hell, many people overtly called it that for much of the show.  So it seems that MIB can’t escape his guard duties entirely.  Maybe that’s part of his nature…but without the other side of his nature, represented by Jacob, he’s a much darker and more menacing force than he should be, and potentially deadly for the world at large. 

What if it’s more straightforward than I’m making it?  What if Jacob really does just want someone to come along and replace him, and take up his role as protector of the Island, someone to keep Smokey in check.  Isn’t the biggest risk there that Smokey will eventually find a way to loophole the next sorry sap into getting shived, and escape anyway?  The game won’t end, it will just be extended.  The only way to win the game, say it with me Mathew Broderick Fans, is Not To Play.  

Never trust a computer screen bearing greetings from Professor Falken or random dudes in the jungle of a mysterious island offering magic wine or daggers.

 

  

Now, this got me to thinking:  If my theory is correct, then why did Jacob choose these people?  I’m certain there is more to that to come in the last 3 ½ hours, but here is something to chew on:  We know that Smokey has been executing a long con throughout the show, manipulating events to get into Locke’s bod, and kill Jacob to eventuate his escape from Fantasy Island.  But what if Jacob has an even longer con going on.  What if he brought certain people to the Island whom he KNEW would compliment each other in such a way that when the MIB eventually found a way to inhabit one of them, there would be someone amongst the group who would be the perfect foil for the MIB avatar, someone who could bring him back from the Dark Side.  That’s why Kate isn’t a Candidate anymore…because MIB chose Locke…and the only true foil for Locke is Jack.  So, it is the MIB’s choice that solidifies Jacob’s choice of Candidate.  Although by Candidate here, I’m not talking anymore about who will take Jacob’s role, but the one who will be the catalyst for convincing the MIB to accept the role.  WHOAH!  What did I just do there?  Seriously.  I feel like this opens up so much, and lets so much fall into place, I’m literally reeling from it.  Why Jack?  Because of Locke!  If Sawyer had been chosen by MIB, then it would have been Kate!  If Jin had been chosen by the MIB, then Sun, etc. etc.

Which leaves Desmond.  I have no idea. Don’t get cute with me, damnit.  We still have 3 ½ hours left for that to play out. 

But this idea of the merging or healing of dualities can play into the sideways world mystery also.  For here again we see a reflection of a fractured world, two realities, which need to be merged into a single reality.  Sideways world/Island world, Jacob/MIB, Locke/Jack.  Things will come together.  And they won’t come together in a way which just perpetuates the game, a simple exchange of actors…they will come together in a way which redeems.  And Locke will have his redemption too.  He was a man of faith, a man whose faith was tested sorely, who got played by a cynical being intent to destroying meaning.  Jack, a man who refused to see meaning in anything, who clung to the pragmatic even in the face of the miraculous.  Now, their roles are reversed, and the two are inexorably being drawn into a singular orbit.  What will come of their collision?  What will this new unity be? 

And what I like best about this idea is that it brings the Island back in as a character.  Behind these ideas is one in which the Island itself is wounded…wounded by Jacob’s violent sin.  The source has been tainted.  If Flocke is redeemed, and accepts the guardianship from Jacob and his smokey nature, then perhaps the Island gets healed, redeemed as well. 

Stay tuned.  We have 3 ½ glorious hours left to find out.  And I for one can not wait.