Wednesday, December 26, 2007

"Random Quirky Mystery - Part 6"

Among all the questions about the DHARMA Initiative that we've amassed since our TLE summer, there is one question (among many!) that we need to get an answer for by the end. That question would be, assuming that Jacob was already on the island when the DI arrived to set up their facilities, did the DI know about Jacob before they were rubbed out in the Purge?

Since Season 2 we have seen a mysterious "Him" spoken of by various people who were already on the island before the castaways arrived there. Sometimes when the Others mention "Him", it seems as though they are talking about Alvar Hanso, like when Tom in his Zeke persona makes reference to "a great man". At other times it sounds as if they are talking about Ben, as when Tom is talking to Ethan in the Staff station, about what a certain "He" is expecting. Then sometimes Ben talks about a mysterious, all-knowing, unforgiving "Him", that has to be Jacob. But regardless of who all these different "Hims" might be, when they are referring to Jacob, how far back does Jacob's sacred "Him-ness" with the DIs/Others go?

In Ben's FBs, Jacob seems to have something to do with Ben's apparitions, and his being chosen as the next project manager of Mysterious Island. If that is the case, then Jacob had to be on the island when the DI was there, most likely before. It would be kind of weird for him to show up somewhere in the middle of the DI's preparations. So from that, we could assume that Jacob was there even before the DI/HG unloaded their first crates of scientific equipment and pitched their tents on the beach of their shiny new magical research island. And if Jacob was there pre-DHARMA, I wonder how and when he revealed himself to them! Did they wander into his lair during a jaunty jungle recon hike and shine an evil flashlight into his cabin? Or did the blasting to create their subterranean stations awaken a dormant Jacob-Monster? However they met up, I hope that we get to see it!

Maybe Jacob is one of those fabled island volcano gods and they woke him up and he spewed fire and ash all over the DI's work until they managed to somehow keep him contained and under control. Which might be why Miss Olivia told her class that the volcano hadn't erupted in a long time -- "...because now we've got that evil volcano-man locked up safely in a rickety old cabin on the hill (with his Howard Hughes urine bottles!) and he won't bother us any more." Or so they hoped. At any rate, we need to know how long the DI knew about Jacob, and whether or not they tangled with Him as well, when they were scuffling with the Natives and causing their own inevitable Purge.

UPDATE: On Memphish's blog, Lost2010 said this about the DHARMA relationship with the Hostiles: "My guess is that the Dharma Initiative showed up and the "hostiles" welcomed them with open arms and showed them all the island had to offer. Then Dharma basically turns around and takes over their island and treats them as if they were the interlopers." I really like this idea, and it may tie into the DIs indeed communicating with Jacob early on, and then getting him P.O.'d when they started bringing all their nasty technology to upset the delicate balance of the island's properties.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

"Christmas Greetings And Random Thoughts"

Mele Kalikimaka!

#1) Damon and Carlton have said many times that Lost's main theme is redemption. Christmas is about that too. TPTB say that the Lostaways have the opportunity to start fresh on the island if they want to. And on the beach, Jack says something about how their old selves are dead and they have new lives. That sort of makes Lost's redemption island like a "Christmas" island, for whatever castaway wants to reach for a humble new start. This is not the normal "mental-fast-food" topic you see on TV nowadays and fans have welcomed it, perhaps partially because the very thought of being able to start over fresh if one wants to, gives people hope. Every new day brings with it a new chance -- or a New Hope, as George Lucas would put it. :-)

#2) There's a campy retro Christmas song that goes, "How'd you like to spend Christmas, on Christmas Island?" and there really is a Christmas Island! According to Wiki, it is a territory of Australia that "has a unique natural topography and is of immense interest to scientists and naturalists due to the number of species of endemic flora and fauna which have evolved in isolation...undisturbed by human habitation." Sound familiar??? The history of the island isn't quite as benign as the holiday song though, especially during WWII, but it has come around. It really seems like it would have been a perfect place for a Dharma project, because it's isolated and rugged, and time doesn't move the same there as in the civilized world, according to one visitor's log that I read. Oddly enough, it's even in the general vicinity of Lost's uncharted island mysteries.

#3) And now for the obligatory holiday schmaltz! :-) As I've mentioned before, I retired last year and moved to TN, leaving all my buddies in NY. Due to my current health problems, I haven't been my usual social self, so I haven't made any new friends yet outside of family. Except for all of you nice peeps in the Lost Blog Community that is! It is SO nice having all of you as online friends! For the past year, since TLE started it all, I have loved reading your thoughts and chatting with you about the show, and life's little idiosyncrasies, among other things. I look forward to it every day, seriously. So I hope that everyone has a wonderful Christmas and a prosperous New Year! :-)

"Merry Christmas Tiny Tim"
"God bless us, every one!"

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

"A Small Theory About All The Mystery"

This is not an earth-shattering thought or anything, I admit. But I was wondering, is it possible that TPTB are not just being annoyingly coy in telling the LOST story in such a frustratingly cryptic structure? Could part of their M.O. be to immerse the viewer as much as possible into the story? That is to say, the TPTB might want us to experience the show as if each of us was a terrified Flight 815 castaway -- to place each of us into the story as if we were one of the passengers who crashed and was trying to deal with everything that was happening, as it happened. As a passenger, we would not know anything about the other passengers, the Others, the Stations, or the island, etc. We would be just as clueless as we are at this point as viewers actually, and we would learn the details bit by bit as passengers, like we are while watching. It's as if we were playing the LOST game, as that new "third person" that was created for it, only we are moving through the show each week with no controls, just as an observer to everything that's going on.

Of course, in order to tell the story sometimes TPTB have to make us, the viewers, step out of our 815-selves, and observe things from the other characters' viewpoints, or else it would be a pretty flat story line. Sometimes we have to see things as another castaway, and sometimes we see things as Ben or Juliet, to be told the stories that surround us outside the immediate circumstances. But for the most part, we are in the dark as much as any Lostie in the beach camp. And the choppy non-linear way in which we are learning about the island and its inhabitants is pretty much the same way that the 815 entourage are learning about it...piece by excruciatingly tiny piece, as every beach day goes by...just like one of the survivors.

If TPTB are creating the show for this kind of immersing effect, I think that they took a very bold and impressive gamble trusting that there would be enough intelligent or curious viewers that would be able to "play" along, until they get to the point where the Losties and the viewers started to learn all the mysteries together. I don't know if I'm correct in this theory, because most likely TPTB would have told us that this is how they are writing the story for us to view it, and I've never read that they have stated this. They have told us about other ways that they have been inspired to write the story to explain their method, so they would probably mention this angle as well. But I wonder. The show sure does often make me feel as clueless as one of the Lostaways who have been left out of the loop, as Hurley put it. And I have a feeling that as the secrets and mysteries are revealed to Jack and his gang, that we will be having the same "Eureka!" moments that they will be experiencing, and at the same time. It can't be too much fun to present a show's story in this fashion, so if they are, there are sure to be big payoffs as we and the Lostaways learn more about their predicament in Season 4 together.

Friday, December 14, 2007

"Random Quirky Mystery - Part 5"

A LOST mystery that may not be as crucial as others, but would be extremely satisfying to know, is how the island was discovered by civilization in the first place. Like most LOST mysteries, we have been fed lots of little morsels of data to chew on until the episode where the story is wrapped up in a nice neat package (hopefully). So far none of the island clues really link together as far as we know at this point, although many imaginary connections can be made with what we've been given. I'm tired of doing that though, and would like TPTB to fill us in on how the island was discovered -- either by the DI, or by the long lost Magnus Hanso leaving his secret to his family, or whatever, by whomever.

Apparently the indigenous inhabitants were there for a long time (and they might have an "arrival" of sorts as well in their own past which could be interesting) before hapless travelers like the Black Rock crashed there. The details of time in between the slave ship "landing" in the jungle and the DI's approach are blank. Even in Hanso's speech to the new DHARMA recruits, when he talks about where they are to do their research, he goes from speaking of "the facility" to "the island" with no connecting details. It would have been so nice if he would have said, "The facility at which you will be conducting your important research is located on a secret uncharted island that was handed down to me by my forefathers, and is known only to myself, the De Groots, and now you." Oh well.

So TPTB, how about it? How was the island "discovered" in the first place? Like the saying goes, "Enquiring minds want to know."

P.S. Since Season 1 of LOST (even before TLE resurrected Verne's Jup [Joop] the orangutan) this show reminded me of the 1960s movie "Mysterious Island", and continues to do so as it moves along. That's not a bad thing, Verne's story was due for a well done remake for this century and I am enjoying TPTB's efforts and homage of sorts to one of my favorite scifi/fantasy writers. :-) See the wiki entry for comparisons:

Saturday, December 8, 2007

"Random Quirky Mystery - Part 4"

A post on "Approaching Lost" ( brings up another mystery that we surely need to know by the end of the show. That is, why can the Island/Jacob cure diseases (and flaky sperm counts), but not the rancid uteruses and toxic pregnancies? We are led to believe that the Island might somehow actually cause the aging uterus problem, so healing it would not apply in that case anyway. But why doesn't the island create super-babies with its wondrous healing properties while the uteruses are still viable, rather than adversely affecting the fetuses causing monster growths that attack the mother? Which also begs the question, how were the Island natives able to propagate before the DI came along, but that's for another post.

I suppose that we are kind of taking it on assumption that Ben may have ticked off Jacob or the Island in some way, which led to his not being healed of his spinal tumor. Maybe it's because he has not solved the fertility problems yet that Jacob has withheld Ben's healing, therefore letting Ben know that he's moving on to another leader who has the faith to fix the problem (Locke). But then that brings us back to the original question...why can't the fertility problems be healed like Locke's legs, Rose's cancer, etc.?

Is the fertility problem a situation like, a little bit of cure is good for fixing some things, but a large amount can cause problems? For instance, a little medication is good for aches and pains, but too much will wreck your liver. And maybe this contradiction falls somewhere into the area of the blast door map's, "the remedy is worse than the disease" notation? Was Radzinsky really saying that the Island itself may be able to enact miracles of healing in some ways, but in other ways staying on the island is very dangerous and you don't want to do it? As in, it can repair low sperm counts, but stay any longer and it will kill the mother and child? I hope that TPTB will reveal this to us by the finale!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

"Happy Hanukkah Lost Friends"

Hanukkah celebrates the liberation and rededication of the Temple of Jerusalem, after its destruction by foreign forces. Since TPTB have infused Lost with so many spiritual undertones, one wonders if the upcoming trek to "the temple" mentioned in Season 3 will be used to impart more spiritual parallels and inspiration. I hope so, the spiritual aspects have been a nice part of the Lost story since the beginning, and it always brings very thoughtful segments and discussion of the show. The Lostaways and the Others will be engaged in a battle from which they might retreat together to this mysterious temple section of the island. The possibilities of what could happen there are very intriguing on numerous levels, depending on what exactly is there at the site.

Even though I'm a Lutheran, I feel that Christians should celebrate the Jewish holidays too, to remember how the Lord always comes through for us. After all, we were taught all of the Old Testament stories in Sunday school, right? Many of us might be fighting some kind of battle in our lives right now. I pray for everyone to be able to keep the lights of hope burning, to stay strong and faithful, and be blessed by the everlasting oil of peace, faith, love and good health this holiday season. :-)

Note: My image for this post was lifted from this Hanukkah decoration website (of which I am not affiliated, I just used their image):

Saturday, December 1, 2007

"Random Quirky Mystery - Part 3 "

Once in a while bloggers will bring up the subject of why Ben can't or won't leave the island, especially in light of the fact that he was sick and needed treatment. I think that this is a very interesting question, also since Ben doesn't seem to have any friends on the island -- through his own fault or that of his circumstances. He's pretty much a man alone in a crowd which he expressed with his quote from "Of Mice And Men" to Sawyer.

We know that Ben was not too happy as a child living on the island with his dad, and as an adult he seemed to be as disgusted with the DIs as his father was, albeit maybe for different reasons. Assuming that people actually can come and go from the island, as we witnessed Richard doing, why doesn't Ben leave? Is it because on the island he is a very important big fish in a little pond, and back in the world he would be a nobody in a big pond? Or could Jacob possibly kill Ben from afar, like he supposedly healed Juliet's sister, if he jumped on the sub and ditched his island responsibilities?

I suppose that there is the chance that Ben really did come to love the special island where fate (or Mrs. Hawking?) placed him as a child. Or he might have grown a close sympathy for the island's indigenous people who love the island, and he wants to help them to keep it sacred. Worst case scenario, he really wants to leave but he is Jacob's (or Hawking's) island puppet and has no choice at all. That explanation might also reveal why he has no sympathy for others like Juliet who are trapped there-- because if he can't leave, why should they be able to? This is another case where I hope that we can look back and see the light about this mystery before the end of the series comes.