Wednesday, March 24, 2010


So if you haven't seen last night's episode and don't want things spoiled, stop reading now.

So we finally know what this whole show is about...  And its not really surprising, since they told us early on in the series (maybe the second episode when Locke talks to Walt about backgammon).

So here are my thoughts on last night's episode:
-Alpert gets one heckuva baptismal experience from Jacob.  This reinforces the idea that Jacob is the good guy and The Man in Black is the bad guy. 
-The exchange between Alpert and Jacob really is more telling than anything else.  Jacob says that he can't absolve Alpert of his sins... But  he's God....  Why can't he?  Simply put, because Jacob wants people to be responsible for their own actions.  If absolution of sins came for no reason, then the free will that Jacob so desperately wants people to exercise on the island is meaningless.
-The Man in Black tried the direct approach.  Ask Alpert to kill Jacob.  That clearly didn't work.  So his next attempt... the Long con.  Manipulate the people that Jacob brings to the island, to prove to the Man in Black (El Diablo) that people will choose to do the right thing, when faced with temptation, to show that people are not as good as Jacob believes they are. 
-But Jacob is dead....  And now that we know the motivations behind bringing people to the island, we might understand this to be an even larger allegory of Nietzschean philosophy.  God is dead.  Its the ultimate test of free will and morality.  Without Jacob there to provide guidance, to tell Richard how to advise the islanders, will they choose good over evil still?  Or will the islanders open up Pandora's box and let smokey leave the island?
-Finally... a future hope...  I really hope that Hurley takes Jacob's place.  Hurley represents the everyman throughout the show.  Hurley being promoted to the guardian of the island would be symbolic of the everyman being capable of triumphing over evil, overcoming themselves (Nietzsche again), transcending mere humanity into the director of their own fate and values.


  1. First of all - you should read Luke 4 (the passages that Richard was reading while in the jail cell). It seems VERY important.

    We have the temptation of Jesus and Satan pushing him to turn a stone(!) into bread and Jesus responding, "Man does not live by bread alone." This might be Jacob's little "inside joke" with MiB/Esau.

    Luke 4:37 itself is when Jesus drives out an evil spirit. This could mean either FLocke or Sayid at this point. Or spreading the news could be indicative of Richard telling everyone about Jacob, MiB, and Isabella and what they all must do. We're build up to an epic confrontation where Jacob's followers must thwart the MiB's plans.

    I agree, the concept of free will was all over the place, as well as temptation from the devil. God allows us to have free will, and that includes doing bad things and making mistakes (possibly also including Jacob's death?!) Without the possibility of being bad, or choosing evil, we're simply God's automatons. The devil, meanwhile, wants to tempt us toward evil, and oddly enough, he is the ultimate definition of a necessary evil - a component of free will, if you insert a being of infinite good, you need an alternative or people will necessarily be good by default. Lost seems to come back time and again to this idea of making mistakes, all the people on the island having some kind of "sin" and the alternate timeline presents the possibility of redemption - at least for those who choose it (Sayid kinda gets the shaft there).

    Another strange allegory that popped into my head, besides Jacob allowing himself to die just as Jesus did, is Obi-Wan Kenobi (!) who also allowed Vader to kill him, saying, of course, "If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can imagine." So, too, perhaps shall Jacob become now that he can in death influence his followers more than ever and get them to stop the MiB. But, ultimately, as you said, it's the choice of the people on the island to choose sides and decide where they will stand, whom they will follow, and what they will do when the last showdown happens.

    I read somewhere else someone mention that this sounds awfully familiar - think of the last season of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer and replace the Island with Sunnydale.

  2. Hmmm... I'm not crazy about the obi-wan connection, since it implies Jacob is more powerful now that he's dead. I don't think this is the case. But then they have made star wars references in the past.

    If we're right that Anti-Locke is the devil, then it turns out that Widmore really is one of the good guys.... Ben was just mislead. It isn't exactly clear when Ben was listening to Jacob and when he was listening to Anti-Locke. Seems to me that Ben seemed to have a closer relationship to Anti-Locke since Jacob never appeared before him, and he summoned Anti-Locke twice.

  3. My brother brought an interesting theory to my attention. It has to do with the fact that MiB shattered the bottle of wine when Jacob gave it to him.

    Jacob says that the cork is like the island, so instead of removing the cork (leaving the island), MiB is instead going to "shatter" their current reality, and escape into the parallel dimension.

    or something like that... I thought it was a neat idea.