Sunday, February 7, 2010

"Bad Lazarus Twin"

The more we talk about Jacob and his Nemesis, the more it reminds me of the StarTrek:TOS episode, "The Alternative Factor". In that story two entities show up that present a conflicting dilemma for the Enterprise. To begin with, Spock discovers an energy anomaly: as the Star Trek website Memory-alpha.org puts it: "...Spock has discovered a source of radiation that is not there – a "rip" in the universe, where regular physical laws do not apply."

The Enterprise thereby gets involved in a multiversal enmity between two time traveling characters (Lazarus and Anti-Lazarus), who have duped them into coming to the planet for various reasons of their own purposes. The interesting point about these two fighting men, is that each says that the other is the one that needs to be stopped, and they both want Kirk's sympathies. And each man is disappointed in the crew for not being able to easily realize which one they should trust. Was that why MIB said he was disappointed in the people on the beach, because we silly humans can't figure out which entity to believe and follow?

Both Lazarus men seem to be lying and Kirk can't get to the bottom of it until he goes back down to the planet: "Once there, he meets the other Lazarus, the sane Lazarus, and learns the truth. Anti-Lazarus' people discovered how to pass through the negative magnetic corridor that both connects and protects the two universes. When this happened, Lazarus couldn't bear the knowledge that he had a duplicate, and resolved to destroy his other. He is mad and doesn't care if this causes the death of two universes. Anti-Lazarus and Kirk realize he must be stopped: if Kirk can force Lazarus into the corridor, Anti-Lazarus can hold him there, and Kirk can destroy his spaceship – which will also destroy Anti-Lazarus' spaceship. Access to the corridor will be sealed forever, and both universes will be safe. And two men named Lazarus will be at each others' throats for the remainder of eternity." It reminds of me of how Jacob said that he had an old friend who was tired of him. MIB seems to not be able to stand to exist in the same timespace as Jacob, and has wanted to kill him for a very long time we found out in S5 -- at the same time that we found out that there was an enemy of Jacob.

Now I'm not saying that our island pals are matter and antimatter and obviously our universe will not cease to exist if they are both in it, because we have seen them together. But we have one seemingly passive and one aggressive entity at odds with each other, and like Kirk we're not sure which one is the benign or malignant one. And MIB doesn't seem to care what will happen to us or our universe, if he kills Jacob. Is this why Widmore and Hawking seem pretty scared? In the end of The Alternative Factor the "good" Lazarus locks himself away in the multiverse corridor with Kirk's help, to save both universes from destruction, where they will fight each other forever. Jacob seems to have already sacrificed himself, will the Losties help Jacob trap MIB in a similar way to "...save us all" as we keep hearing?

A nice synopsis of the ep and screencaps can be found at these two sites:
http://tos.trekcore.com/gallery/thumbnails.php?album=53&page=23

6 comments:

Capcom said...

I just thought of other questions for this...if MIB goes home, will that action destroy the earth or our universe, by ripping a hole in the spacetime fabric or whatever that allows him to pass? Is this entire "great war" thing all about keeping MIB trapped on earth so that he won't destroy it by going home (we'll all be destroyed, as Mrs.H said to Des)? And is that why he needs to kill Jacob, i.e. Jacob is blocking him from leaving the island/earth somehow, and the only way MIB can go home is to get rid of Jacob?

Say that Jacob is happy on earth and doesn't care about going home, he likes watching humans playing out the game of life in their intellectual evolution. MIB is bored with humans, they always get it wrong, so he's done here. So MIB either has to get Jacob to leave with him, or has to kill him to clear the path for himself to leave. ???

Sayid'sgirl said...

Great post Capcom.
There's been so many parallels (no pun intended) between Lost and Star Trek.
I thought of this episode when Marvin Candle did the DI video with the rabbits.

Plato's Stepchildren That episode reminds me of MIB and Jacob some what. At least MIB does anyway. It was the episode where the gods were bored and brought Kirk and his crew down for amusement.

The Tholian Web is another episode I've thought of when watching Lost.

Capcom said...

Tx, SG. Good points about those other ST eps. I have hardly ever seen the Tholian Web ep, that's one that they don't rerun too often it seems. It's a good one too. I need to get some ST:TOS DVSs.

Sayid'sgirl said...

I said MIB remined me of Plato's Stepchildren. I meant to say Jacob. I have all the original series on tape. I' ve been working on transfering them to dvd.

Sayid'sgirl said...

Darn it. I meant to say I like your new header.

Capcom said...

Tx!

Last year my sister got me the 70s animated ST series as thanks for babysitting. It's the next best thing to having ST:TOS since most of the original actors are in it. But I still need to get TOS soon, such an eternal classic.