Sunday, June 14, 2009

"Sayid's Paradox"

Hey Sayidsgirl over at TLC, this pic's for you. :-) Seriously, this is such a good screencap shot, it would make a great painting (I should do that this hiatus). Poor Sayid has been through so much, and worked so hard on the island to do the right things in his life going forward, as well as simultaneously being the Losties' personal post-crash MacGyver. Yet after all he's done to attempt to chase down some redemption for himself from his past, he appears to be one of the Losties whose destiny seems doomed to follow purposes much less noble than he would like to choose for himself. Sayid knows some dangerous skills that he'd like to forget, but those abilities repeatedly come in handy for their survival since the crash on this crazy island. Events continually transpire that threaten the castaways' survival, and Sayid's experience is often the only option available to save them at that moment.

For instance, consider his decision to shoot Little Bennie at the edge of Dharmville. I wonder if TPTB want Sayid to be as confused as I am, about his decision to kill a mere boy in the attempt to stop an evil man? In the movie Kung Fu Panda, Master Oogway tells Master Shifu that, "One often meets his destiny on the road he takes to avoid it." Could Sayid's solution here fall under the causal loop paradox (Wiki:A time traveler attempting to alter the past in this model, intentionally or not, would only be fulfilling their role in creating history as we know it, not changing it"), or is he merely trying so hard to change the future, that he's actually bringing it to pass? Often in life we can cause something that we fear to happen, because our extreme behavior places us in that path after all. We are left to wonder if this will be the outcome of Sayid's questionable attempt to eliminate Bennie, in order to remove the trouble that the adult Ben has caused. Did Ben the man become evil because of his father, or because of losing his innocence via the island's magical healing due to Sayid's interference? Perhaps it would have happened either way, i.e., that was Ben's destiny and whatever happened between childhood and manhood, he would still end up being the little dictator of whatever world he lived in.

So TPTB leave us to wonder, will Sayid's intention really rid the world of a manipulating, conniving, sociopathic Benjamin Linus? Or does his attempt to eliminate Bennie actually cause the rising of evil adult Ben? These problems seem to plague Sayid across the board. He wants to be a good man, but circumstances and fate seem to keep thrusting him into a role that he doesn't desire to play in life. But as always Sayid comes to the rescue for the cause, even after taking Ben's future into his own hands, because he never gives up on helping the people that he believes to be on the side of good and sincerity. Are his motives still benevolent even if his methods are not? Hopefully Sayid will come to terms with that in Season 6, if he doesn't die from his gunshot wounds. TPTB often leave Sayid in precarious places emotionally and physically, but now that he's facing death for real he's going to need some peace of mind and personal redemption even more than before. I hope that TPTB let him find it either way.

12 comments:

Sayid'sgirl said...

Hey Capcom
First off thanks for the great picture.

Not that I'm defending shooting a child but...

Everyone seems to think that Sayid is the one who set Ben on his path.

But Sayid wasn't the one who took him to the Others to be "saved".
That was Juliet's idea and Kate (and eventually Sawyer) carried it out.

If they had let things be, like Jack did (and no one seems to have a problem with that) then Ben would have died as Sayid had intended then things may have changed.

I guess what I'm saying is Sayid isn't the ony one who had a hand in what happened to Ben.

The actual shooting of Ben didn't cause his problem it was Juliet and Kate's choice (or more so Kate's and maybe Sawyer's choice after hearing what Richard had to say) to save him that did.

And yes please some redemption for Sayid. Unless that means he dies. ;)

Capcom said...

Hi SG! Yes, that is very true. The extra variable is that if Bennie had just died, Sayid's plan would have actually worked!

I had a problem with Jack's attitude in not helping Bennie, but perhaps deep down he was thinking on Sayid's wavelength there. I can imagine Jack thinking, "Well at least someone had the guts to do it" after he heard about what Sayid had done. Maybe even thinking that he knew what it took Sayid to do the deed, and didn't want to contradict Sayid's pain in doing it (as we saw by how he threw down the gun in disgust), by agreeing to treat Ben.

I kind of get the idea that, except for his brief respite at the home-building charity thing, Sayid was probably still out of his subconscious mind with grief over losing so many that he loved, including his friends (and for being trapped as Ben's personal hitman), in the past fours years. Then he gets treated like a Hostile while his friends are yucking it up in DI-ville, and *snap*, he kind of loses it.

Poor Sayid.

Greg Tramel said...

yes, we can in no way blame the way Ben turned out only because Sayid shot him, I do think Sayid felt a bit disturbed that he actually shot a kid (that’s why he didn’t finish it off) but at the time it seemed like the right thing to do and he really believed it was his destiny to shoot him and truly believed that's why he flashed back to the island in 1974

Ben still would have been the way he is even if he was not shot by Sayid or anyone else

Capcom said...

That's a very good point about Sayid thinking that it was his destiny after going back in time, I'd forgotten about that angle.

Capcom said...

P.S. I just now read a very interesting point in the book about the Kung Fu series episodes. Master Kan says to young Kwai Chang, "Sometimes [intervention] seems called for. Right action can come only from inner conviction. But there is nothing written which guarantees that that which comes from a good motive will bring good results. Intervention is therefore its own paradox."

That seems to relate well to Sayid's good intentions, and how sometimes his actions don't always return the positive results that he would chose. :-o

pgtbeauregard said...

Good post Capcom. All of these time travel pardox' (paradice?) makes my head spin - all of the what if's.

I wonder what would have happened if Jack had treated him. hmmmm...

Capcom said...

Hi PGT! And tx. :-) I wonder if we will ever know. But there would have to be more than 6 seasons for that alternate timeline to happen, haha.

Greg Tramel said...

sawyer is bad

Capcom said...

Nuts, Youtube was down when I tried to view the video, it says to try again later.

Greg Tramel said...

maybe try it on the site i saw it on

Sayid is BAD

Greg Tramel said...

woops! i just realized i put sawyer instead of sayid the 1st time, sorry

Capcom said...

I got the Youtube one to work, that's great! Lost fans are so clever.

Ms.Wendy's vids are just showing up as a blank white space for me yesterday and today. ???