Thursday, March 25, 2010

S6Ep9 - Ab Aeterno

Hello my dear friends -

Guess what? We've officially reached the halfway point of Season Six. Nine hours down, nine hours left to go before it all ends on May 23. I've gotta say that if the remaining episodes are even remotely as incredible as Ab Aeterno was, we are going to be very happy Lost fans indeed.

So go ahead and add me to the list of people who loved this Ageless Richard-centric hour (its title, by the way, is Latin for "since the beginning" or "for long ages"). I made what might've been the most obvious comment ever to my husband after it was over: "This was so much more powerful than it would've been had we gotten his backstory earlier." We needed years of seeing Richard as Jeff Probst's doppelganger -- clean-shaven, stylish, confident and spewing out impeccable English -- in order to truly appreciate how far he's come in, oh, a hundred and forty years. And to understand how utterly desperate he must feel to finally want to give up on the job he was given by Jacob all of those decades ago.

Since this episode bucked the traditional format and was almost entirely done in flashback mode, I'm just going to cover things chronologically. Let's do this.


The opening scene showed the beach gang discussing what Ilana told Sun about "the candidates." Since I knew from the previews that this was going to be a Richard Alpert flashback, I was really surprised to see the replay of Jacob and Ilana's conversation in the hospital when she was all beat up. So I just assumed Richard was going to walk in, or was also lying on another hospital bed or something. Wrong. They showed us -- and expanded upon -- that scene again to reiterate three important points: 1) Jacob was wearing gloves and therefore never transferred any of his magical powers to Ilana, 2) he specifically said that she had to watch over "the remaining candidates," indicating that he was aware the latest experiment he was conducting on human nature was coming to an end, and 3) that "Ricardus" would know what to do once she brought everybody to the Temple.

The scene cuts back to real-time on the Island and Ilana repeats that Jacob said Richard would be the man with the plan. That's when we heard what might've been the most girly, yet simultaneously awesome laugh from the ageless one, who was standing off in the shadows of the campfire. He's like, "Joke's on you, suckas, because I got nothin' for ya." He then proceeded to tell Jack that he (The Mad Doctor) was dead and that they were all in hell.

And then I (and I'm sure many of you) groaned a loud groan and said, "Oh no, the Purgatory / They're All Dead theories are going to be alive and well again after tonight." Sometimes I think the writers just want to mess with the hardcore fans who dismissed those theories (because the producers themselves shot them down) back in 2004. Sigh.

Then Richard stomps off into the jungle to find the Man in Black, Ilana tries to stop him but Jack says it's pointless, Hurley's on the outskirts of the clearing, talking in Spanish to an unseen ghost, Ben tells everyone that Richard "doesn't know anything," and then the group just looks at each other and laments that they don't have any marshmallows, graham crackers and Hershey's bars with which to make some much-needed s'mores.

And then we switch to flashback mode once more...


A heavily bearded Richard is riding a horse across what I assumed was the Island, as there was a mountain in the background and we'd seen Widmore riding a horse around the Others' camp before. But nope, the setting was the Canary Islands and the year was 1867. Richard arrives home to his coughing-up-blood wife, Isabella, and he realizes that he needs to get her help right quick. She gives him her cross necklace, tells him that "we'll always be together" and he takes off on a half-day journey to find a doctor.

He finds a doctor, who's pretty much an ass, and then accidentally kills him -- much like how Des accidentally killed Kelvin on the Island. But as Richard looks down at the blood flowing from the back of the doctor's head, he realizes that he's got the medicine vial in his hand already. So he busts out of there... all for nothing. Isabella has passed on by the time he returned to her.

He gets no time to grieve because lawmen followed him home. The next time we see him, he's in a prison cell. A priest visits him, he begs for forgiveness for the awful accident, but Father Suarez will have none of it. He tells Richard, "I'm afraid the devil awaits you in hell. May God have mercy on your soul." Nice. That's the last time Richard gives a confession! Even if he wasn't about to be hanged!

Shortly thereafter, Alpert is in the process of being hauled off to the gallows when he's stopped by some British dude and asked if he can speak English. After it's revealed that he can, the British guy -- Jonas Whitfield -- BUYS him and declares him the property of one Magnus Hanso. As in, the great-grandfather of Alvar Hanso, founder of the Hanso Foundation, which financed the Dharma Initiative. (None of this is stuff we hadn't known before, except the confirmation that Richard was indeed a prisoner on the Black Rock. I'm just repeating the Hanso stuff for the "normal people" who don't remember all of this Lost mythology from past seasons.)


Finally, we get to see the long-awaited Black Rock voyage. Thank the heavens that the FX were OK in this scene. All of the prisoners are in chains below deck and one of them peers out to see an Island that is "guarded by the devil" -- Taweret in all her glory.

And then, the Black Rock proceeded to take out the majority of the Four-Toed Statue. BIG MYSTERY SOLVED -- woo-hoo! I thought that part was pretty cool. Now we also know that it was a huge tidal wave that landed the ship in the middle of the Island. Another mystery solved. It's almost too much to handle. Almost.


Next we watched as poor Richard saw Whitfield stab and kill everyone else below deck, one by one. Just as it was Richard's turn to look down the edge of the officer's sword, who shows up to wreak havoc but Smokey. Whitfield is disposed of and now Richard's face-to-face with something much worse than a man-made weapon. Smokey proceeds with the white-flash/mindscan thing we've seen him do before with Juliet and Eko, Richard is spared and Smokey rattles off.

Minutes turn into hours, hours turn into days, and Richard continues to fight to break free from his chains. Although these scenes were sad, I did find it kind of humorous that long before the boars of the Island taunted Sawyer, they were around to mess with Richard, and one of the bigger members of their clan caused him to lose the pin he'd been painstakingly trying to unlock his cuffs with. He was just out of reach of the pin and of rainwater, and he was just about out of hope and the will to live when Dead Isabella materializes. But Richard thought she was very much alive and therefore totally freaked out when she ran above deck, only to be eaten by Smokey.

What was Isabella? Since her body wasn't on the Island, it doesn't seem like the MIB could've transformed into her, does it? But maybe after the mindscan MIB could shift into people he saw from Richard's past? Or maybe Richard was just hallucinating -- who could blame him at that point, right?

I have to think that Isabella was the MIB in disguise, however, because the entire crux of his plan was to make Richard think that "the devil" had her. He even went so far as to admit that he was the smoke monster, that's how confident he was that Richard would be undeterred and still do whatever it took to save Isabella.

MAN IN BLACK: I'm not the one you need to worry about. The Devil has your wife, and you are going to have to kill him if you ever want to get her back.

RICHARD: Murder is wrong. That is what brought me here.

MAN IN BLACK: My friend, you and I can talk all day long about what's right or wrong, but the question before you remains the same - "Do you ever want to see your wife again?"

RICHARD: Yes I do.

Now, I know that in my last few posts I've been pointing out the increasingly religious tone that the show has taken, and clearly Ab Aeterno was the most blatant Bible-referencing episode of late. However, I think the only reason "the devil" was actually mentioned this time around was solely because of the mindscan Smokey performed. The Man in Black knew Richard was a God-fearing man and therefore used that against him in order to manipulate him into doing what he wanted -- namely, killing Jacob. What better way to do that then by telling Richard that Jacob was the devil... and had nabbed his wife? So let me be clear: the Island is NOT hell, no one back at the campfire in the present time is dead, they are not in purgatory, and Jacob is not Satan. I believe, just as I always did, that Jacob and the Man in Black might still represent some sort of religious figures, but I'll talk about that more in-depth later.


Richard sets off for the statue, gets into a tussle with Jacob who -- in an attempt to convince the Island's latest visitor that he is not in fact dead -- dunks him a bunch of times in the ocean, just like a high school bully. I kind of liked this less patient version of Jacob. Anyway, Jacob was like, "If your wife was dead before you came here, then that wasn't her that you just saw on the ship -- duh." Jacob then goes on to describe evil as wine swirling around in a bottle, and the Island as the cork that was stopping it from escaping out into the wider world and spreading. Jacob explained that he brought people to the Island in an attempt to prove to the Man in Black that humankind was fundamentally good. Yet he never wanted to interfere with anyone's actions once they arrived. Richard called Jacob's strategery lame, and pointed out that if Jacob didn't try to influence visitors' actions, "... he will. DOUBLE DUH!"

Jacob felt really silly for not having realized this. He would've totally failed a Game Theory course back in the real world, geez. It dawns on him that this Ricardo dude could be useful, so he offers him a job as his "representative" in exchange for immortality. It's important to note that Jacob made it clear he couldn't bring back the dead, nor could he absolve anyone of their sins. So, he is NOT God, not that anyone really ever thought he was. I should probably mention that in the comments for my "Sundown" post -- the episode in which Sayid turned evil and killed Dogen -- Lost fan extraordinaire and LLL reader SherylM pointed out that while Jacob offered to save Dogen's son in return for Dogen coming to the Island, never did Dogen actually say his son had DIED. He just said that Jacob claimed to be able to "save" the boy, which could mean that he was so seriously injured he was probably not going to make it. So there are no inconsistencies in what Jacob says he can/cannot do. Even when he touched Locke after Locke's eight-story fall, he touched Locke within seconds of landing, so it's possible Locke had not died of internal injuries by that point, which I'm assuming would've happened otherwise. (Holy crap, it just hit me that we still don't know WHY Locke was paralyzed in the flash sideways timeline since he now has a good relationship with his father... DAH! Sorry. Back to THIS episode...)


Back in the present day on the Island, Richard returns to the stone bench under which he had buried Isabella's cross... the cross that the MIB saved from the Black Rock wreckage 140 years prior and had handed back to him with the promise that his "offer" would always stand. After Jacob's death, the Temple massacre, and learning information about "the candidates" which he'd never been privy to for 14 decades, Richard was more than ready to take the MIB up on his deal and end his time as Jacob's errand-boy. And I think the writers of this episode did an excellent job of helping us viewers understand exactly why Richard had finally had ENOUGH.

So he digs up the necklace and starts shouting into the wind, "DOES THE OFFER STILL STAND?!?!"

I was positive that Fake Locke was going to appear out of thin air, but instead Hurley emerges from the jungle. The first thing through my mind was, "Hurley is definitely going to be Jacob's replacement." I mean, all signs are pointing that way, no? I still think Jack will play some monumental role in "saving" the Island and everyone on it, but so far Hurley has been the most connected to Jacob and has already carried out his will several times. Then, in a very Ghost-like sequence, Hurley revealed that he'd been talking with Isabella -- who was presently standing right next to her long-lost love -- and that she wanted Richard to stop punishing himself for her death. She also wanted to remind him that they are "already together." Sniff.

Ghost Isabella vanished and Hurley dropped one last bomb on Richard: the ageless one's dead wife also mentioned that he HAD to stop the Man in Black from leaving the Island because if he didn't, "we all go to hell." Once again, I did not take her words literally. I took them as, "I'm a God-fearing Ghost and you're still a God-fearing immortal and the MIB is evil so you can't let evil win." Do not make me publicly shame you by trying to convince me her warning was evidence for the Purgatory theory!!!


The last scene took place back in 1867 on the Island. We see Jacob and the Man in Black engaged in another tenuous chat, much like the one they had at the beginning of "The Incident." The MIB swears he'll find a way to kill Jacob one day... and that he'll also kill anyone who replaces Jacob. So there should now be no doubt that the promises Fake Locke is making 815ers like Sawyer and Kate and Sayid are complete lies. He fully intends to off them. Also, did you notice how Fake Locke and the MIB as played by Titus Welliver are so amazingly alike in their mannerisms and speech? Very impressive.

Even though his life has just been threatened, Jacob takes the high road and replies, "Brother, you need a drink. Oh look, I just so happen to have some wine. Here you go -- bottoms up." He gives him the bottle and then takes off. Once he's alone, the Man in Black throws a hissy fit and smashes the wine against a log. That's, like, SO mature.

Let's wrap up by discussing what new things we've learned about Jacob and his nemesis. I know there's a "Fight Club" theory going around that states Jacob and the MIB are the same person. This idea picked up a lot of steam after the MIB gave Richard the exact same instructions for killing Jacob that Dogen gave Sayid for killing Fake Locke/MIB: 1) Don't let him speak... AT ALL, and 2) plunge a special silver sword into his heart (it was the same sword in both episodes, by the way). While I am not by any means dismissing this theory on the grounds that I don't think it makes any sense (because I do think it's very clever), I am going to dismiss it on the grounds of "too complicated for a prime-time TV show with only half a season left."
First off, Jacob is already dead -- so how would THAT work if he and MIB were the same guy? Secondly, you've got people like Ilana sent to protect Jacob, and another big group siding with Fake Locke. I just think it would be waaaaay too complicated to not only wrap all the other several dozen (or more) outstanding mysteries in the show, but also find a way to easily explain to the average viewer that Jacob and his nemesis -- you know, the guys that were shown talking to each other, passing a bottle of wine back and forth, giving rocks as presents to each other -- are actually THE SAME DUDE. Nope, too complex to pull off, sorry.

After this episode I think the same thing I've always thought: that MIB is a form of evil. It doesn't really matter what his name is or if he's the devil or just a force for darkness or a demon or whatever. All that matters is that he despises humankind and therefore wants to prove that man is inherently "bad." He also wants to escape the Island so that he can spread his special brand of wickedness around the globe. (One thing that's confusing me is that I could've sworn we already saw Smokey -- in apparition form -- OFF of the Island. As Zombie Dad in Jack's hospital in "Something Nice Back Home" (remember, the smoke alarm even went off in that scene?) and on the freighter before Michael blew up. Anyone wanna help me make sense of that?)

Jacob, on the other hand, represents "light," or "goodness." He believes that man is inherently moral. He could be some sort of angel... that would still make him on par with the MIB if the MIB was in fact the devil, because in many religions the devil is described as a fallen angel. He might be some sort of heaven-sent representative charged with keeping the devil from running wild all of the place.

No matter what you want to view these two as, clearly they are not human beings. So we can all at least agree on that point, right?

I think it's nearly impossible for next week's episode to match the awesomeness of Ab Aeterno, but here's hopin'...

Until then,
- e


Erika (aka "e") said...

Songs used this time around are:

Hold On by Sarah Mclachlan

I'm a Slave 4 U - Britney Spears

Fly - Sugar Ray

Running down a dream - Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

Workin' for the Man - Roy Orbison

Take this Job and Shove It - Johnny Paycheck

Bottle of Red Wine - Eric Clapton

Thanks for reading!

- e

Alisha Rene' said...

all I can say is - WOOT WOOT that was great! it's so good and all so sad at the same time :(

Joe said...

Nice recap -- one quibble: The slaves were killed by sword-to-the-gut, not a rifle. Doesn't change the gist of that recap section, though.

Anonymous said...

I have just started to read "Things You Never Noticed About LOST" - the section about Purgatory and the 'they're all dead' theories when I watched this episode. I'm with you, e - I don't think they are. Loved this ep, and very glad to confirm Richard's (approximate) age and origins. Thanks for the write-up!

Fernanda said...

I don't know. I can't shake the feeling that actually Jacob is the bad guy and not MIB. I know, I know, all the facts are pointing that way (jacob-good, MIB-bad), but it is so obvious-in-your-face that I am beginning to go "hmmmm, maybe there is a twist here".

I loved this episode too! Plus "Ricardo" speaking spanish was very hawt!


Erika (aka "e") said...

Joe - Thanks... I edited the post to reflect that.

- e

RebeccaZ said...

Here's a random question that probably belongs on last week's post (and I'll go back to look through the comments real quick): When Kate was seen running away from the cops before she was stopped by Sawyer, she jumped over a puddle. I thought I saw a reflection of the Smoke Monster in that puddle. Am I seeing things? If I'm not, well ... holy smokes (no pun intended).

When you mentioned that Smokey possibly took the form of Christian when he was talking to Jack, it reminded me of my random vision. I might need to go back and watch it, but I just haven't had the time.

Loved this episode.


Unknown said...

Thanks e, Great review.
Question: Does that make the ship we see in "The Incident" the Black Rock?

Neil said...

e- I am a long time reader and first time poster. But this was an amazing episode and you and the rest always seem really good at spotting the little things so I thought I would ask about a few things I saw that may/may not be important.
1. In one episode we see Jacob and MIB talking on the beach looking at a ship we assume is the Black Rock on a nice sunny day but now we know how the Black Rock got to the island. Why the discrepancy? The writers are too good to over look something like that aren't they?
2. In the prison the priest asks to see Richardo's bile and they give us an ever brief glimpse of what Richard was reading. The passage was about prophets not being accepted by their own people. Do you, as a community, think there is any significance to this? Or after reading all of your posts and the subtle hints the writers seem to leave am I reading way too much into a brief scene?
Thank you as always for your insight into a great cultural phenomena.

Anonymous said...

You said near the end: "One thing that's confusing me is that I could've sworn we already saw Smokey -- in apparition form -- OFF of the Island. As Zombie Dad in Jack's hospital in "Something Nice Back Home" (remember, the smoke alarm even went off in that scene?) and on the freighter before Michael blew up. Anyone wanna help me make sense of that?"

Christian has white shoes in that hospital scene. I am of the belief that "white shoed Christian" is Jacob, whereas "dark shoed Christian" is MIB. We also know Jacob can leave the island, Smokey cannot. We know Locke saw a white light smoke back in S1, so I think Jacob may be this white smoke, which would explain the smoke alarm.

Alexistran said...

Hey e!

The freighter was still "on the island" by the definition of the island as any place caught within the radius of the island moving.

Let me put it more clearly: If something moved with the main island, chances are the smoke monster can reach it.

As for the Apparition of Zombie Dad, we don't know for sure what's going on there but I think we should probably assume that that instance of him was not smokey (even if the smoke alarm did go off).

Alexistran said...

Anonymous said:

"Christian has white shoes in that hospital scene. I am of the belief that "white shoed Christian" is Jacob, whereas "dark shoed Christian" is MIB. We also know Jacob can leave the island, Smokey cannot. We know Locke saw a white light smoke back in S1, so I think Jacob may be this white smoke, which would explain the smoke alarm."

We don't know that Locke saw a white smoke monster. We know that he "looked into the heart of this island and what I saw was beautiful" but it's only speculation that it was not smokey he was looking at. I'm inclined to believe at this point that there is only the black smoke monster as smokey often refers to his form being stolen, which doesn't seem to be something that's happened to Jacob.

Also, e, just because they're not in hell doesn't mean they can't go to hell if smokey gets off the island, or rather, doesn't mean that the world can't go to hell if smokey gets off.

Mark said...

I'm assuming that the episode's final Jacob/MIB convo occurred in 1867, right after Richard agreed to be Jacob's errand boy. MIB was looking pensive, then smashed the bottle and said, "Sooner than you think," seeming to indicate that that moment of meditation was the genesis of his "Loophole" sheme that would eventually culminate with Ben slaying Jacob. The final shot seemed to emphasize that the malevolent wine was released by smashing the bottle, rather than removing the cork. Does this mean that MIB's plan is not to leave the island, or move the island, but rather to destroy the island in some way, say by setting off an atomic bomb and sinking it to the bottom of the ocean? Could everything leading up the Incident have been part of MIB's evil scheme all along? Hmmm . . .

stephen jacob darrell shepherd said...

So how do you suppose the BlackRock ledger now gets off the island and into the hands of family member Tovard Hanso?....Who takes it off and for what reason?

I cant believe MAGNUS HANSO just came and went in the blink of an eye! Ive been waiting to learn more since i saw his name on the Blast Door Map 6 years ago!

Nathan said...

Great recap for a great episode. I see the person above me has already commented about Christian Sheppard but I wanted to add something. Remember that Locke's body is found after the smoke monster takes his form, but Christian's body disappeared from the coffin. In a recent episode Jack even told Hurley he wasn't able to find his dad's body in the coffin, so it seems like the writers may be trying to remind the audience of this difference.

Anonymous said...

why do you think smokey can't leave the island and jacob can?

Anonymous said...

E-you think it's possible MIB is a fallen/exiled angel from heave ala the movie "Dogma"? You know, he was cast out of heaven and exiled to the Island where his evil can be contained. And that's the why for his apparent animosity towards humans...he has seen God forgive and forgive time and time again the evils that us mere mortals do, but when he did, he was cast out? Jacob is just there to keep him in check, but even Jacob realizes he will not be around forever and has to find his own replacement like he already has been doing.

Erika (aka "e") said...

To the Anon poster right above the comment, see this post I did:

In short, yes, I mentioned the Dogma thing last season. : )

- e

Rebekah said...

A comment on the fact that Jacob and MIB could be the same person. We have yet to actually see MIB so what if he is only half alive and can be seen by others because there was a dead body that had not yet been taken care of for him to take over. Also llana said that he (MIB) can no longer change form and that he is stuck this could be becuase he has no body.

The Dauphin said...

Jacob says that the island is a cork. Does this mean that in the sideways timeline (where the island is on the bottom of the ocean), the cork is out? If so, it implies that the MIB is on the loose in that timeline - no?

Anonymous said...

Alexistran said "We don't know that Locke saw a white smoke monster. We know that he "looked into the heart of this island and what I saw was beautiful" but it's only speculation that it was not smokey he was looking at. "

When referencing his experience with the smoke, Locke said to Eko that he "saw a white light", to which Eko replied "that is not what I saw". I was mistaken in saying it was S1, but Locke did say he saw a white light.

Sherylm said...

Thanks for the shout-out, e! I enjoyed this episode for all the answers it gave, though the ship hitting the statue, breaking it off and yet arriving on the other side of the island all in one piece was a bit of stretch for me unless the statue was made out of break-away Styrofoam (which, in fact, it probably was ;-)

My thoughts pretty much parallel yours for this episode. I have to say the more I see Jacob, the better I like him, especially now that he is more "Mr. Action Figure". The ocean-dunking scene was great!

But I was also glad to see original MIB back, too. I feel like he and Jacob are twins, like Jacob and Esau in the bible, maybe even identical at one point in time, which would explain their mirroring actions. Maybe that's what "Evil Twin" was referring to.

Yet, in many ways they are like the Archangels Michael and Lucifer. Lucifer's downfall came about after he was put in charge of guiding the created world and in doing so came to want to possess it for himself. Then Michael (who is the "protector of Israel" while Jacob is the "father of Israel") was given the task of casting him out of heaven and making sure he couldn't come back.

In spite of all that, I agree that the Biblical references here were because of Ricardo and his belief system. The MIB used the metaphors Ricard understood to try to corrupt him and so, all the talk about hell and the devil, whereas it was Nadia for Sayid, Baby Aaron for Kate, and "this is just an island and so let's get out of here" for Sawyer.

Am I the only viewer who thought Hurley was talking to his grandfather in that scene at the beginning of the episode? In any event, I am really enjoying Hurley's growing sense of quiet confidence. When Jack was (once again) shouting at him about Jacob and he replied: 'Sorry, Dude, this has nothing to do with you' I was delighted. And then when he walked up to Richard when we were all expecting Unlocke, I said to myself: 'Please don't let him be possessed!' And luckily, he was just his same good-hearted (in both senses of the word) self. I do think that the dead people Hurley sees are "real" in that they are emanations of the real dead person whereas all the dead people the MIB conjures up are just disguises designed to lure people in.

In many ways Hurley is like Samwise Gamgee and of all the 815ers deserves most to go home and lead a happy family life.

I hope we learn more about Ilana since, in spite of everything that has happened, she has not left her faith in Jacob be shaken. I have to admit that I was a bit annoyed at Richard for blaming Jacob for giving him what he had asked for. In any case, Richard's the only one who got eternal life because he's the only one who asked for it.

Good luck working on your book until next week.

Shiv Narayan Gautam said...

I just have one question.
At the beginning of The Incident, we see a ship on the horizon (from the Island). It was a bright sunny morning.
In Ab Aeterno, the Black Rock reaches the Island in the middle of of night and with extremely bad weather.

What happened there?

Or was *that* ship in The Incident not Black Rock at all?

hatchman said...

Thanks for the most excellent recaps!

I was stunned, really, by the end of the ep. Not so much because smashing the bottle was unexpected, but because of what it means within the metaphor set up by Jacob.

The wine (evil, MIB) is contained in the bottle (island) only because of the cork (Jacob). However, MIB deftly showed that removing the cork is not the only option.

I don't feel that the Jacob/MIB pair necessarily represent good and evil, even though it seems that there is an implication that MIB preys upon the badness inherent in persons, and Jacob wants to prove that they are good.

Rather, this is very like the huge unseen hint waaaaay back in S1 when Locke explained backgammon to Walt. In fact, orange-slice-man did say that backgammon predates Jesus.

I don't know mythology too well, but I'm looking for a pair of smae/opposites to crop up. Maybe Castor and Pollux, or Ben and Jerry. Could be Martin and Lewis, too.

I dunno, but I'm strengthening the seat belt on my barcaclounger for the next few weeks.

BTW - I missed your latest contest, and am surprised that no one else chose a full set of Hatch plaques. They'd look great around the office.

ObFuSc8 said...

Hey e, fun read as always! Just a couple niggling things:

Jacob was wearing gloves and therefore never transferred any of his magical powers to Ilana
While I don't think Jacob "transferred any magical powers" to Ilana, IMO he did heal her wounds/burns, and would have had to touch her to do so. Jacob's gloved hands are clearly shown as he walks into that Russian field hospital (whatever it was), and pulls a chair up to Ilana's bedside. But, at this point, Ilana's face is extensively bandaged (except for her right eye and mouth/chin) and there are a number of burns/wounds scattered across the exposed skin of her lower face and lips. This is in contrast to the 2nd part of that FB where Ilana's is seen without bandages, her face healed and pristine, absent even of any scars.

You could argue that some time has passed between those 2 FB's and Ilana's wounds simply healed "naturally". I don't think that's the case, but it really doesn't matter since any wounds that healed "naturally" would have still left behind scars. "Will you help me Ilana?" Jacob specifically asks for Ilana's help, and heals her wounds in exchange.

Holy crap, it just hit me that we still don't know WHY Locke was paralyzed in the flash sideways timeline since he now has a good relationship with his father...
Well, Anthony Cooper still conned Det. Ford's mother in the flash sideways, so either sideways-Locke is lying about his relationship with his father, or Cooper reformed (and if that's the case we'll have to wait to what happened).

ObFuSc8 said...

Neil asked: In one episode we see Jacob and MIB talking on the beach looking at a ship we assume is the Black Rock on a nice sunny day but now we know how the Black Rock got to the island. Why the discrepancy? The writers are too good to over look something like that aren't they?

Every time we've seen a vessel come to the Island, whether it's a ship, raft, plane or helicopter, we've seen a sudden storm/turbulence and a shift between day/night. If we can all accept that Jacob can grant Richard immortality and heal Ilana (and probably Locke), it's not too much of a jump to think he could have also created that sudden storm to give the Black Rock "the push" it needed to crash on the Island.

Unknown said...

One more question...As it seems, Richard was taking orders from Jacob and Ben made what Richard passed on to him as requests from Jacob...
So..what about the Purge?? How come Jacob had instructed such a mass murder??

Lorain Be said...

Just wondering where Richard got his American accent from? I've loved Lost all the way through and I am glad that there are quite a few non-American actors/characters but I do feel Richard would have kept an element of his Spanish roots in his accent, even after all those decades.

Kristin said...

One reason your posts are so much better than others..."my name is Ricardo Alpert, you killed my wife, prepare to die"...LOL!

Matt Nightingale said...

Mark... Right on. My 14-year-old mentioned that right after the episode. He's like, "If the island is the cork keeping the evil from the world, in the sideways world, the cork is at the bottom of the ocean. Does that mean the evil is out?"

Good question!

Anonymous said...

Hey, e. Great write-up as usual! Just wanted to let you know that in the paragraph across from Isabella's picture, there's a URL inserted in the middle of the word "the":

"He even went so far as to admit that he was t smoke monster...."


Erika (aka "e") said...

Rebecca -

Thx - I fixed it!

- e

ElJefeMan said...

I am a long time reader of your blog and always enjoy your views on the show. Ab Aeterno was awesome! It is interesting to note that Jack's dad has appeared off the island on various occasions. That makes me wonder about Charlie appearing off the island after he drowned. Also, Ana Lucia has appeared post-death.

On another note, one of the mysteries I really want revealed are the whispers. What are the whispers?

Overall, this season has been awesome. I look forward to a great second half.

Jason McIntyre said...

Hi e!

Ab Aeterno -- right up there with "Walkabout" in my top two individual stories this show has told so far. What a magnificent little "mini movie" about this "eternally" appealing character!

Next: a couple of opinions, if you don't mind. Not really about the show, but about Long Live Locke, the virtual place we visit weekly when the show is in high gear.

One, I actually like these ever-so-slightly truncated re-caps and insights since you began the hardcore work on your book. Better than the longer recaps you used to write, if you can believe it. I feel the shorter, punchier ones still offer a satisfying balance of depth, candor and knowledge for someone like me, who is a lot more than a casual viewer but not so intense that I'm agonizing over anagrams and second-by-second timelines of characters' lives.

Two, the crowd who posts here is the same -- not too intense but also a group who provides useful and thoughtful questions and commentary.

Cheers to you all!

The Fifth Toe said...

In a March 25 podcast, Darlton answered the question (sort of) about the ship we saw in sunny, calm waters in "The Incident" vs the Black Rock arriving in a storm at night in "Ab Aeterno". They said something to the effect that just because the ship was seen offshore on a sunny day doesn't mean a big storm didn't suddenly appear, causing it to crash onto Tawaret and the island that night.
Clarity, as always.

Unrelated: The little-known, original dialogue for that ending scene from "Through the Looking Glass":

Jack: "We have to go back, Kate. We have to go back!"

Kate: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Liz said...

Luke--As for the discrepancy with the ships: since it was never explicitly stated that the first one was the black rock (just assumed by viewers) and Jacob said he's brought others to the island, I'm just going with everyone assumed wrong, it's just a different ship.

Anonymous said...

I'm a huge LOST fan, but this episode didn't do anything for me. I found most of it very boring. However, I did like the end when Isabella came back as a ghost.

Island Boy said...

The first sighting of the offshore ship in daylight supposedly occurred in 1845. The shipwreck of the Black Rock occurred in 1867. Darlton has supposedly said in a podcast both are the same ship...however, they did not clear up the time discrepancy. It could just be another production error like on the sonogram earlier this season.

Kacie said...

What about Jacob being a guardian angel? Biblically, there is a heirarchy among angels, and angels can be bad and good. As you said, Jacob is not God, but he has god-like qualities and isn't gone though he was physically killed. I'm thinking about the apocalyptic stories of powerful angels, and thinking Jacob could be a powerful angelic sort of being whose role it is to guard this holding place of evil.

This episode reminded me of a christian young adult thriller I read in my early teens - The Door in the Dragon's Throat by Frank Peretti. It's the same idea - of outsiders stumbling on a strangely supernatural spot that turns out to be the locked up dwelling place of evil.

Not the best book, but a similar concept to what we were introduced to this week.

Sam said...

Great recap E! :)

Ha! I dont think it means anything, but, Ive ONLY just noticed something quite obvious...

Jacob gives MiB a 'white rock'... The ship is called the 'Black Rock'...

Esau said...

I think the comment about the island at the bottom of the ocean in the flash sideways is right on. If there is no island, evil is lose in the outside world and may explain all the differences. And how did said Island get to the bottom of the sea? My money is on it having nothing to do (directly) with the Nuke. I would bet that simply started a chain of events that culminated in island at the bottom of sea as of 2004.

Also, am I correct that Richard told Ben to kill the Dharmanians? How much of what Jacob told Ben to do would y'all think was actually MIB playing Jacob? All? None? If so, I'm starting to wonder about Jacob's motives in all this.

Also, anyone else notice MIB saying to Richard "It's nice to see you out of those chains" just like Fake Locke said? Creeped me out.

I think we're headed for a "free will" vs. "preordained destiny" show down between MIB and Jacob. Some religions adhere to the concept of original sin, meaning we are all born broken, while others believe we're good and chose to be bad. I have a feeling this is the debate between Jacob and MIB.

P.S. In the Bible, Esau was Jacob's twin brother. Jacob literally means "Heel grabber" because he grabbed Esau's heel on the way out. Jacob is father to Israel and Esau is father to the other tribes of the world. Jacob was sold/traded by his brothers and ended up in Egypt. This is all lining up too much.

Unknown said...

great episode and as usual, great write-up! I was really waiting for this one! All I could think of was "Oooh Erica is lovin' this one" as I watched!

Gustavo Fernández Walker said...

I was curious about Ben's first appearances on the show, so I've just re-watched a few Season 2 episodes... I thought it was pretty cool the dialogue between Ben and Locke in the Hurley-centric episode "Dave" (after it was discovered that "Henry Gale" was indeed one of the Others): Locke says "You've been on this island for God knows how long..." And Ben interrupts him saying: "God doesn't know. God cannot see this island any more than the rest of the world can". I don't want to read too much into it, but in retrospect, I tend to think it was an early hint at the island not being directly connected either with God or the Devil (a theory that was somewhat recycled this last season in some discussion boards). Anyway, I agree with you, e, when you say that the show isn't going to get in-your-face religious. Great recap, as always! I've been following them from way back in Season 3!

jamesF said...

Thank you for the recap, you are now my favorite recapper, because

a) you are not a fanboy or a shipper
b) you don't go overboard on your theories with long tirades
c) you don't overlook the fact that is a TV Show after all and it has to be "simple" enough for the casual viewers who are not message board / blog readers.

Your last paragraph about Christian is very interesting. As far as him appearing on the Freighter, I'm willing to chalk it up to the freighter being inside the island's territorial waters or inside the zone that is affected by the island's time warping/dilation field. As for his cameo at Jack's hospital, Original Christian's spirit? Hurley can communicate with dead people, Jack could possibly do so as well.

There was a lot of symbolism in this episode, in the last scene in particular. I wish you had delved more into that, because I love those "clash of the titans" type of conversations. I'm still hoping MiB turns out to be the misunderstood good guy and Jacob turns out to be a mad scientist, that would certainly be a big twist. I'm leaning towards the whole religious undertones and black and white affair to be misdirection. I would also like to point out that Jacob is no angel. He brings people to the island forcefully, he coerces them into making impossible choices while presenting it as free will. Sure, they may end up with a more fulfilling life on the island, but all those before Richard had died before he arrived. And he does it just to prove a point to MiB, what kind of sick game is that?

As for Jack, I would really like him to die at the very end, but not in some comic book hero fashion. I want it to have at least the same feel as the end of Al Pacino's Scarface, the more intense the better. We've already witnessed the growing defiance in him with the whole dynamite affair in the Black Rock, taking it a notch further can't hurt. If that can't be, then he can be Jacob 2.0.

TracyT said...

"What was Isabella? Since her body wasn't on the Island, it doesn't seem like the MIB could've transformed into her, does it? But maybe after the mindscan MIB could shift into people he saw from Richard's past? Or maybe Richard was just hallucinating -- who could blame him at that point, right?"

I always have assumed that when young Ben met his mother on the island, "she" was smokey. So it didn't surprise me that Smokey appeared as Isabella. OK, for another thing - wasn't Richard wearing that necklace when he was building the boat in the bottle (season 5?) I remember thinking "Well, thats were that necklace came from" when Isabella handed it to Richard for the doctor. Do you remember him wearing the necklace in the past?

Love your recaps and I always look forward to reading them. Thanks so much!

Cunny said...

First time commenter, long time reader. This is one of the three Lost blogs I read, and one of the others is strictly for comedy value. Keep up the good work!

A couple of things I'd like to mention.

Firstly, I think there's a lot to be said for the Smokey mindscan thing. You mentioned Smokey taking the form of people connected to people he's scanned. I'm a pretty casual fan, so I only remember Smokey scanning two people offhand: Locke and Mr Eko. Smokey appeared as Yemi to Eko, and he's currently taking the form of Locke. I'm sure you're right about this. I don't know about how he appeared as Alex to Ben - Maybe he doesn't have to be in smoke form or something, or he did it offscreen or maybe I just forgot something.

My second point is a lot shorter. What's with this specific, intricate and highly improbable way of killing Jacob and Esau? Ben killed Jacob after a whole conversation with him. Weird inconsistency.

Brasco said...

I loved how they set it up several times where Richard could be killed and thus the opening we're all dead and in hell comment would be substantiated. I didn't believe it, but was on edge when he was almost hung, when Whitfield was stabbing slaves, when he was starving and thirsty fading fast, and even when Jacob was "baptising" him. He dies, and the whole hell and dead thing is game on. Glad it went the other way. Awesome old school lost!

Garry UK said...

Brilliant review as always - e

Do people in Ameriica know where Tenerife is? Lots of Brits go there for there summer holidays.

6 years ago I didn't know where Ohau was. So hopefully Lost has done a lot for ango-American-Euro geography.

One thing I want to say is that if the cork(Island) is keeping the Evil out of the world then in the sideways timeline the island(cork) has been blown off.

The sidetimeline is now subject to all evil surely?

The Four Horseman will surely turn up....No?

Sherylm said...

JamesF: my son had the same idea about the dead-person appearances back on the mainland, i.e. those who appeared, even to 815ers other than Hurley (who I might add, was able to see the dearly departed long before Jacob touched him), were, like with Hurley, the spirits of the actual dead person. So Jack saw his real dad at the hospital and Kate saw the spirit of the real Claire warning her not to take Aaron back to the island (maybe when Claire was being "saved" by the revival pool at the Temple).
Esau, a small course correction ;-) it was Jacob's favorite son Joseph (of the many-colored robe) who was sold by his brothers as a slave to Egypt.

It's great reading everybody's thoughts and theories here. Thanks, you guys.

Andra said...

We have seen some dead people on the island that havent died there. Like Ben's mom Emily, and Hurley's friend (blanking on the name) that he thought he was hallucinating, but now I think was Smokey trying to "off" Hurley way back when.
Part of the confusion is that I think we actually see dead people but sometimes Smokey also impersonates the dead. So we are left in the dark about which one we are seeing- real or fake.

Lisa A said...

Hi e, Did anyone else notice the score of this episode? For me it was one of the reasons the episode was so good. Does the same person score all the episodes? The music that played while Richard was riding the horse made me feel like I was there with him, wish I was!!!!!

Anonymous said...

quick note

**P.S. In the Bible, Esau was Jacob's twin brother. Jacob literally means "Heel grabber" because he grabbed Esau's heel on the way out. Jacob is father to Israel and Esau is father to the other tribes of the world. Jacob was sold/traded by his brothers and ended up in Egypt. This is all lining up too much.**

Wrong Jacob the jacob in Jacob abd esau ran away after stealing Esau inhertance and then cam eback married to lots of women and Esau and Jacob amde up

Anonymous said...

ack! Now I have nasty wonderings about Isabella being smokey in that moving scene - the big Q is, if Isabella was really Isabella, why was smokey not there in instant response to Richard's appeal to change sides????! Is her appearance then merely coincidental?

Also yes, Jacob's quest reminds me a little of the game playing in "Trading Places"...

And, as for neither smokey nor J being human - do we then assume smokey was lying in his conversation with Kate about having had a mother and a human form before he "lost" it?

The Grey Rock said...

Pre this episode, I was convinced that Ricardus was a Roman who was somehow connected to Egypt. As a total fool for those ancient cultures, I had especially anticipated Richard's back story. No Grungy Catholic Richard could ever stand up to my Richard in his Legionaire outfit with the little skirt and molded breastplate! Damn my imagination!

Once I got over my initial disappointment, I could enjoy getting to see Richard's Spanish back story.

Now that I have that out of the way, can anyone explain how this Jacob / MIB stuff relates to (1)both Ben and Locke moving the island or (2) why Sayid was Ben's assassin?

Anonymous said...

MIB appeared as Christian on the freighter because it was inside the island's radius (Jin and Faraday's raft both moved w/ the island in season 5). However, the Christian seen off-island was actually Christian, or possibly Jacob (basically whatever Charlie and Eko and all the other dudes Hurley saw off-island were.)

Unknown said...

Just had a thought...

Is it possible that MIB brought Richard's ship to the island???

Since Jacob always gives the MIB white rocks to mess with him, is it possible that the MIB said "OK, wise-a$$, here you go... How about I give you a BLACK ROCK right up in your grill and smash your cute little statue on the way in?"

Something to ponder???

Erika (aka "e") said...

Lisa A - I did notice the score and liked it, too. It is always done by Michael Giacchino, who just won an Oscar for his work in Up.

Michael - Jacob specifically told Richard that he was the one that brought the Black Rock to the Island. (It's in the transcript which you can find on Lostpedia.)

- e

Jamie said...

Does anyone else think that Richard was dead and it was MiB that brought him back to life, he did appear to be dead and also MiB did touch him for quite a few seconds and in the same way Jacob touched Locke and Richard (at the end of the episode)
Surely Richard would have been a good choice to be the replacement for Jacob and know a lot about the island, Jacob and MiB, so why is he not a candidate, is this because he was (at least partly) been claimed by MiB

jamesF said...

@ Sherylm : I'm glad to see I'm not the only one with this theory. I feel we should get an explanation for all those spirits that appear on the show. They can't all be the MiB's doing.

@ The Grey Rock : Your question requires a bit of explaining, so I'll try to do my best.
When the freighter full of bad dudes came to the island, Locke and Ben reached a mutual agreement to go and ask Jacob what they should do next. However, at Jacob's cabin, they encountered the MiB, who appeared to Locke as Christian. The MiB seized the opportunity to enact his loophole plan, by convincing Locke he had to move the island. But Locke had no clue how that could be done, so Ben manipulated Locke (by using Locke's desire for purpose, that is, to be the Others' leader) and turned the wheel. This sent the castaways spiralling through time, so Locke (with a little pep talk from MiB disguised as Christian) turned the wheel again, resulting in Sawyer, Juliet & co. to remain trapped in 1974, where they lived till 1997.
As far as Sayid goes, well his wife was murdered. Ben came to him with information on the murderer. After said murderer was dispatched by Sayid, the latter confessed to Ben he didn't have a life anymore and wanted to help eliminate all the people that were a threat to those that remained on the island. So, naturally, Ben made the most of it and used Sayid's anger and despair to make him do his dirty work.
I hope that helps :)

@ Jamie : I thought the same too, when MiB touched Richard. The same thing could have happened to Sayid.

Unknown said...

Love reading everyone's thoughts and theories! Just wondered if anyone else thought that when Jacob dunked Richard in the ocean, it was like he was baptising him? Then they sat and drank the red wine - could this symbolise the drinking of Christs blood - as in the holy communion? I was waiting for them both to eat a loaf of bread lol! Therefore Jacob could in fact be 'God' - or 'God like'. Just a thought. Love reading your blog Erica - you have an amazing way with the written word, bet your book will be fantastic!!

Term said...

Hi all,

Great episode and a great post E.

I think I wanted to touch on something JamesF said.

I find Jacob very odd . . . I mean, he is this powerful being. He "brings" people to the island to prove a point to MIB.

So, he brings the black rock to the island.
In a storm, so some people die. Then, he does nothing while the captain kills the prisoners.
Then, he does nothing while smokey kills everyone else.
Then, as Richard is slowly dying, he does nothing again.
Smokey rescues Richard.

I understand his whole "I'm about giving people choices and staying out of things", but it seems pretty messed up that he brings a boat full of people onto the island and just is okay with them all dying.

He brings Rouseao's ship to the island, and doesn't interfer and lets them die.

He brings planes to the island in horrific plane crashes, and lets people die.

I'm just saying how good can Jacob be if he brings everyone here to prove him point, to find his successor, but allows/puts people into position to die so easily and readily?

Maybe that was Jacob impersonating Richard's wife (in Hurley's mind, and then in Richard's at the end) . . . maybe Jacob is soooo good at manipulating Hurley into getting his way, that he just told Hurley to tell Richard to stop MIB.

He pulled Hurley and Jack out of the temple to save them from MIB.

For a good spirit/entity/person, he's really got a lot of holier than thou ways about him.

Jacob, to me, doesn't seem to be as good as they are hinting at.

jamesF said...

I made a typo in my earlier post; Sawyer, Juliet & co. to remain trapped in 1974, where they lived till 1997.

That should be 1977, not 1997.

Sorry about that...

Spanio said...

No one ever said that Fake Locke couldn't leave the island. Wanting to go home might imply that, but it doesn't make it absolutely so.

For me, it's not even clear that MIB is "ON" the island in the same way the 815ers are. He could be there in a more spiritual sense.

Home for him may not even be an earthly place at all. I'm not talking about space, I'm talking about something more supernatural like "heaven" or "hell" or something similar.

MIB's home doesn't have to be a physical location at all. It could simply be a state of mind. A world without the good vs evil conflict could be his idea of home. Thus, getting "home" entails killing Jacob and any potential replacements.

Without an adversary, MIB would no longer be trapped in this little game he's been forced to play. He could just sit back, knock over the backgammon board and soak in the freedom of sweet, sweet solitude.

Steve S. said...

It was a good episode, but I am disappointed that it was pretty much confirmed that black represents evil. That is such a tired cliche, and I'm disappointed that the writers have resorted to the old "black and white" symbolism. It's the old "if you're white, you're right; if you're black, step back" all over again.

(Great writing on the blogger's part as well, but can we please use "human" instead of of the male normative "man" when referring to all of humanity?)

lorilooski said...

A few things I wanted to mention: The appearance of Claire to Kate off-island, I think, has to also be MIB. After what Flocke told Kate about no one should be raised by a crazy mother, it's clear that he does not want Claire to raise Aaron.

Another thing I wonder about: So many people have mentioned the ship during the daytime may be the Black Rock, but then why did it crash at night. Could it also be circling the island. Remember Desmond couldn't get away from the island because he didn't have the correct co-ordinance. Maybe once the Black Rock wandered into the area it too couldn't escape the pull.

You're the best, e!!!


nirese said...

A little tidbit of info on the Canary Islands from Wikipedia that I though was interesting. Hmm, was there an intentional connection here? I know the statue isn't Anubis, but wasn't it another dog-headed deity?

"The name Islas Canarias is likely derived from the Latin term Insula Canaria, meaning "Island of the Dogs", a name applied originally only to Gran Canaria. It is speculated that the so called dogs were actually a species of Monk Seals ("sea dog" in Latin) now extinct.[16] The dense population of seals may have been the characteristic that most struck the few ancient Romans who established contact with these islands by sea. The connection to dogs is retained in their depiction on the islands' coat-of-arms (shown above).
The original inhabitants of the island, guanches used to worship dogs, mummified them and treat dogs generally as holy animals. In the ancient times the island was well known about its people who worshipped dogs there, and when the Romans first visited the island, they gave it the name: 'canaari', which means in Latin: "the ones who worship dogs", or "the ones with dogs". The ancient Greeks also knew about a people, living far in the west, who are the "dog-headed ones", who worship dogs on an island. Some theorize that the Canary Islands dog-worship and the ancient Egyptian cult of the dog-headed god, Anubis are in close connection, but there is no explanation as to which one was first, and how is it possible for those two far areas to be in contact with each other."

Julebox said...

Great recap and ideas.

*** One big thing not mentioned: I've heard Jacob's "get real" moment with Richard, dunking him in the ocean was representative of Richard's baptism. Think about it, what did Richard end up shouting? "I want to live!" Bibically speaking, you are baptised as a representation of your faith in God and accepting God and Jesus as savior, you inherit eternal life, life in heaven - pretty similar to Richard choosing life (and Jacob instead of MIB). In addition, you could also assume that if Jacob is similar to God (although I agree with E that he may not be as he can't forgive richard's sins, but he at least represents God maybe), Richard is similar to Jesus - think about it - Jesus was God's representative on earth like Jacob chose Richard to be his representative on the Island. I've thought of this parallel before when Richard ran into MIB a few episodes ago in the forest. It was very similar to Jesus being tempted by the devil and being offered anything he wanted by the devil yet Jesus resisted as did Richard.
Speaking of all this, I don't think that when Richard was talking to Jacob about him needing to get to people before MIB, that his was an "ah-ha" moment to Jacob - as in, I don't think Jacob was really surprised by this idea at all - I think all along he brought Richard to the island to serve this purpose. in his role, but he let Richard figure that out, see the need Jacob had for someone to take that role, and then Jacob simply made it seem like Richard's great idea.

HappyNat said...

I agree with Term, in that Jacob is a very odd "good" guy. He says all the right things, but how many have suffered and died because of him wanting to prove MIB wrong? It reminds me of the book of Job, where God makes a bet with the devil about Job staying faithful and then sits back and lets the devil torture Job to see if he is right. If a god Jacob isn't the all loving God of the New Testament, but more of a Old Testament/other older mythological God who likes to use humans as pawns.

RobPerrin said...

I'm still curious about the cabin. Who was there when Ben & Locke visited back in Season 3? Was the ash keeping someone in, or someone out? We see Jacob living in the statue in 1867, and in 2007. Has he always lived there? Or did he spend time in the cabin as well? Also, whose crazed eye did Hurley see? There was a shot in this ep of Richard's eye which seemed similar to the eye in the cabin. I think Ilana provided some info in the ep where she burned down the cabin, but don't recall the details offhand.

Anonymous said...

In response to Julebox -- did you notice that Richard looked like Jesus in this epsisode? The beard, the hair. I noticed that especially when Jacob was talking with Richard about Richard being his go between.

Anonymous said...

The Island only surfaced because Jacob needed a replacement. the Island is only used for that to contain the evil. I believe it is now at the bottom because a candidate was found and the island is no longer needed so it is now back below containing the evil. I wonder if the donkey wheel is what can lower and raise the island?

Jason Seville said...


I've seen you (and others) say that the writers won't get too religious with the message of the show. However, given some of their influences and "shout-outs", I don't see why a religious message would be so out of bounds. Consider CS Lewis, The Stand, etc.

timmyc02043 said...

With regard to below, I'm on board with the fight club angle. My theory is that MIB and Jacob are two parts of one being. Jacob is the body while MIB is the soul. While he shows up in others' bodies (Locke, Titus' character, Isabella) the black smoke is "trapped" so long as the body - Jacob - is alive. Jacob can eat because he is a living body. MIB cannot eat - and thus never drinks or eats the food and drink that Jacob always offers him - because he is only a soul. Because Jacob is a the vessel, he is mortal. The soul cannot destroy the body, however, which is why MIB has always searched for a loophole. Because they are both one in the same, they are equally "persuasive". Lastly, the island is just a cork. The real thing trapping the darkness in the wine analogy is the bottle itself. Why destroy the island when you can destroy the bottle itself? Jacob, as the body that traps MIB is the bottle. It is why MIB smashes the bottle when referring to killing Jacob sooner than he thinks.

Rebekah said...

A comment on the fact that Jacob and MIB could be the same person. We have yet to actually see MIB so what if he is only half alive and can be seen by others because there was a dead body that had not yet been taken care of for him to take over. Also llana said that he (MIB) can no longer change form and that he is stuck this could be becuase he has no body.

timmyc02043 said...

I'm sure someone brought this back way back in the episode where Ben visited Widmore in his bedroom at night but what is the connection between Widmore and Ben hating each other but not being able or allowed to harm one another and the fact that Jacob and MIB have the same relationship? I know that conventional wisdom is that Ben was a pawn and is powerless / not a key power player in the end game but I just can't imagine that they built his character so well not to leave him with a trick up his sleeve.

The Messed Up Times said...

Your request for no spoilers made me think of this.

(I haven't actually looked at spoilers, so I have no idea if it's true or not)