Saturday, January 30, 2010

LOST: Let's blow this thing and go home, kid!

Months overdue, here's a recap-ramble on the season 5 finale, with some bits of cross-reference scattin and conjecture. Of course, I've got more thoughts and theories on it all, but will put those together in a next entry.

I've grouped all the Jacob encounters up front, with years or guesses at the years in which they happened.

Just days til the beginning of the end. Bittersweet anticipation, y'know? I'm not looking forward to not looking forward to the show.


JACOB POW-WOWs WITH ESAU (19th century?).

I'm gonna call him Esau, the brother of Jacob from Genesis (of the Old Testament, not progressive rock). Did we ever get a year on the Blackrock's arrival, at the auction where Desmond tracks down Widmore? Well, it's that year, and Jacob is doing his thing at home at the base of the giant Egyptian statue on the shore. He's making thread, which he's weaving into a tapestry...

OK, we get it, we get it!

When he settles down on the beach with his stone cooked fishy meal, Titus Welliver shows up. He accuses Jacob of bringing the Blackrock to the Island and complains about how it's always the same. These humans visit, their human nature asserts itself, and it all ends in death and misery. Good times.

Jacob says that it only ends once, and anything that happens before that is progress.

Sounds like the MATRIX, no? Or a classic fable/myth/legendy treatment of higher powers looking to settle a wager and/or prove a philosophical point, in this case by releasing human beings into the testing ground or lab of the Island. If I had to fill in the blanks, I'd say that Jacob believes that man is worthy of the gifts of the Island, and capable of living with them in peace and harmony, while Esau believes that man can never overcome his instincts for greed, violence, and selfishness. Apparently, Jacob has a history of luring humans to the Island to prove his point. Presumably, Esau does what he can to knock him down.

Then Esau turns to Jacob and asks, "Do you have any idea how badly I want to kill you?" He goes on to say that one day, he'll find his loophole, implying that he can't simply reach over and beat, choke, stab, or tickle his brother to death. Jacob tells him that he'll be right there waiting, and Esau exits.

To be honest, I'm somewhat annoyed that Jacob doesn't seem to be directly connected to any of our familiar Losties. I'd really hoped for him to be a transformed Daniel, and as a longshot, perhaps an Island-enlightened Jack, wish Sawyer also transformed as an opposing or symbiotic force (Jack-ob and E-Sau-yer). But, what we got, Jacob, as an Island Highlander and recluse, with at least one Island Highlander brother, who wishes to kill him, but according to some rule, is unable or not allowed, recasts everything we've seen so far in LOST as a bigger chess (or backgammon?) game than Widmore v. Linus, and for the sake of that, I'm kind of digging it. This could be a bit more Loki vs. Thor (but who's "good" and who's "bad?"), or even Elders of the Universey.


Kate gets caught trying to steal an NKOTB lunchbox from a general store near her home. The proprietor's about to call the cops when Jacob offers to pay and gets her out of her first potential jam w the law. He tells her to be good, and touches his finger to her nose.

What's the lesson here for Kate? She steals and gets away with it, thanks to his kindness. The kindness of a stranger. An older man, even.


Jacob visits Sawyer, aka James Ford, at the church right after his parents' funeral. James has begun to write the letter to Tom Sawyer when his pen runs out of ink. Jacob gives Jimmy a pen to finish it, tells him that he's sorry about his parents, and then walks off.

At that point Jimmy's uncle approaches the boy and tries to talk him out of writing this letter and holding onto his anger. He explains to Jimmy that, "What's done is done," and gets him to promise that he's not going to finish that letter.

He carries that letter for the rest of his life, until the moment in the Blackrock brig when he hands it to Locke's father to read. Locke's father, aka Tom Sawyer, begins to read it, and with some egging on from James, he remembers how he swindled his parents. When James demands that he finish reading his letter, Tom Sawyer says OK, but then tears the letter to pieces. It's this act that finally drives James to pull a slave dancer Princess Leia on Tom Sawyer the Hutt.

It's kinda nuts that at the time of Jimmy's encounter with Jacob, his thirty-years older self is the head of security in the Dharma Initiative


The year is post-2004, perhaps 2005? At least a year after the Oceanic Six have returned to civilization, as Sayid and his wife are talking about celebrating their anniversary. They're at an intersection in LA when Jacob stops Sayid from crossing while Nadia walks on. She is struck down by a speeding hit-n-run SUV. It's Nadia's last wish that she be taken home.

And that is where Ben finds Sayid. And it's this hit-n-run that Ben uses as a lure to enlist Sayid's skills in an assassination campaign against Widmore's organization.

Jacob puts his hand on Sayid's shoulder when he turns to look at Nadia, who's just found her lost sunglasses.

The view of the intersection from above is identical to the view from Ben's lawyer's offices in 2007. Kate visits these offices in an attempt to discover who sent lawyers after her to compel her and Aaron to take a blood test to (dis)prove maternity.


Ilana seems to be recovering from something like burns, all bandaged up. Her face bandaged up to cover her left eye, even. The attending nurse says, "I explained your condition, but he insisted on seeing you anyway."

Jacob, with gloved hands, sits down beside her, and apologies for not being able to make it sooner (was he busy elsewhere?). She's happy to see him, recognizes him, so they've met before. He asks for her help, solemnly, seriously, in a way that hints that if she agrees, she may not survive the experience.

Given the burns, the bandages, the setting (everyone seems to be speaking Russian), and the nurse's choice of the words "your condition," I had a gonzo flash to Chernobyl, but that timing doesn't make any sense. Maybe there's some man-made disaster or conflict in more recent history that I'm spacing on.

A very intriguing idea that JG turned me onto is that this is a flash forward, an exchange that occurs after Ben stabs Jacob in the Foot (y'know, they're both INSIDE the foot and Ben sticks him twice in the chest =). I don't know why they'd be at a Russian facility, but this could be in the aftermath of the "war" that Widmore and the Shadows have hinted at, and Jacob has come to ask her one more favor.

Whoa. What if the timeline we've been watching for five seasons is the alternate timeline, and this is a flash-over to the original timeline? A war is being or has been fought and it's going Wrong. Jacob shows up to ask Ilana to go to the Island and set events in motion that will change their (modern) history, creating the timeline that we've been watching.

If this meeting happens BEFORE Ajira 316, then I would have to say that Ilana makes a miraculous recovery, eh? A gift of regeneration and healing similar to Mikhail's?

In any case, we never see him remove his gloves or touch her.


Jacob's sitting on a bench reading Flannery O'Connor's EVERYTHING THAT RISES MUST CONVERGE. The cover art: an arrow hitting the breast of a dove in flight. Behind him, we see Locke fall to the ground, having just been thrown thru a skyscraper window by his father. He looks unconscious... perhaps dead? Jacob places his bookmark, walks to Locke's body, kneels, grabs Locke's shoulder, and Locke gasps awake oepning his eyes wide. He seems to focus on Jacob in the moment and Jacob tells him, "Don't worry, everything's gonna be allright. I'm sorry this happened to you." Jacob walks away.

Does Locke remember that someone was there when he regained consciousness. Shock would easily explain Locke having no memory of Jacob.

Was Locke dead?


It's the day that Jack nicks the dural sack of his first major surgical patient. In the OR, Christian talks him down, giving him the "count to five" in the face of fear. Afterward, Jack's attempt to acquire an Apollo bar is thwarted by an obstinate vending machine. His dad shows up then and Jack goes off on how he put him in a time out in front of his surgical team.

Jack: Dad, I know that you don't believe in me, but I need them to.
Christian: Are you sure I'M the one who doesn't believe in you, Jack?

Christian walks away, and Jacob, at the vending machine, calls to Jack to give him his recovered Apollo bar. Their fingers brush when he hands it over. Jack blames the machine and Jacob replies, "Guess it just needed a little push."

I've always thought that Christian was in with the Island, and knowing that his son would play a fateful role in its evolution or salvation, did what he could to groom him for it. To help direct Jack down a particular life path, Christian called in a miracle from the Island to save the patient who would become Jack's wife. It sets Jack's rep as a gifted surgeon as well as lays the groundwork for a time bomb of a marriage.


Jacob crashes Sun and Jin's wedding. He speaks excellent Korean. The couple's vows are prophetic...

Sun: I have loved you since the day we first met. I'll love the man you will become as we spend our lives together. With this ring, I make my promises.
Jin (reading): We will never be apart, because being apart would be like the sky being ripped apart from the earth. With this ring, I make my promises.

On his turn in the receiving line, Jacob touches both of them as he tells them "I'd like to offer you my blessing. You're love is a very special thing. Never take it for granted."

His blessing. Given his apparent abilities, not an offer to take lightly.

Also, his Korean is excellent. Charlotte's Korean was pretty good, too, right?


Hurley's discharged from LA County lockup (thanks to Ben's lawyers). Hurley gets into a cab with Jacob, who says he's only going a couple blocks. When Jacob tells Hugo that he's been waiting for him, Hurley's not surprised, believing him to be one of his dead visitors. Jacob explains that he's not dead an dhe wants to know why he won't go back to the Island.

Hurley: Cuz I'm cursed. That's why the plane crashed, my friends died, Libby, Charlie. Now they visit me, and I can't make it stop.
Jacob: What if you weren't cursed? What if you were blessed?

This exchange is a little annoying to me, cuz it seems like Hurley has already acknowledged and accepted his gift, playing chess w Eko, getting help from Anna Lucia, being visited by Charlie at the institution. BUT, I suppose he's even more comfortable with it after this exchange. Back on the Island in 2004, he tells Locke that they can both see the cabin because they're both crazy. Back on the Island in 1977, tho, he talks about his abilities with Miles like they're a superpower.

Jacob tells Hurley about the Ajira flight, tells him,"It's your choice, Hugo," touches him as he says this, and gets out of the cab. When Hurley reminds Jacob of his guitar, he tells him, "It's not my guitar."

Isn't Hurley holding onto that guitar case when he lands in the shallow water in 1977? I'm guessing that it doesn't come back with him, eh (unless it's in the Dharmawagen they take to the Swan site?)? I wonder if it might be a paradox, like Locke's compass. A guitar that Charlie buys second hand, maybe at Eloise Hawking's pawn shop, 20 some years later, that Jacob recovers in 2007 and leaves with Hurley in the cab. =)


In the underground catacombs of the Others, while Sayid is refitting Jughead, Richard talks to Jack...

He tells Jack that in 1957 John Locke told him that he'd be the leader of the Others, and since then he's gone off-Island to visit young John Locke three times already. In his estimation, he's not so special. He wants Jack's opinion, as someone who knows Locke well, and Jack tells him, "If I were you, I wouldn't give up on him."

The first time Locke meets Richard (as opposed to Richard meeting Locke) is in 2004, when he seems to be ready to accept his role as a Chosen One among the Others. I mean, the average Other is bsaically starstruck in his presence. As an intiation rite and proof of leader-worthiness, Ben has presented Locke with the challenge of killing his bastard of a father, aka The Man From Tallahassee. Locke, however, can't do it, and he loses face.

In f'd up fairness to Ben, that's exactly what he did for his initiation.

In the wake of his failure, Locke is approached by Richard, who introduces himself for the first time. He explains that Ben's agenda and leadership has been marked by folly and distractions, apparently very nontraditional, as far as Others are concerned. It was Ben's intent to shame Locke in front of their people by forcing this challenge on him, knocking Locke down a peg while bolstering his own claim to leadership. Richard offers Locke a solution and hands him the Others' file on Sawyer. Guess Richard takes Jack's opinion to heart, eh? Well, that and the fact that Ben really has steered the Others into strange waters.


I would have liked to have seen some flashbacks that show Jack spending a lot of time at a gun range somewhen from 2004 to 2007. Maybe that's a regular date night w Kate? Heck, maybe Kate and Sayid should've taken everyone to learn to shoot once they got back in the real world. I think we've seen all of the Oceanic Six toting guns except Hurley and Aaron.

Anyhow, when Sayid and Jack attempt to sneak out of Dharmaville in plain sight, Uncle Rico recognizes Sayid and puts a bullet in his chest. Jack then goes gangster on him and attempts to cover their retreat. In the nick of time, Hurley, Miles, and Jin swing in in a Dharmawagen and pick them up.


Rose: They've found us.
Bernard (channelling Sawyer): Son of a bitch.

Rose and Bernard (and Vincent) have been living off the Dharma-Other grid for the past three years. They've retired to their very one place by the ocean and dont' need any rescuing from it. They're happy.

Sawyer and the gang explain that they need to stop Jack from blowing up the Island.

Rose: We travelled back 30 years in time and you're still trying to find ways to shoot each other?

Bernard: So we die. We just care about being together. That's all that matters in the end.

At this, Juliet looks at Sawyer. Sawyer's looking down, but then turns to look at Kate. Kate's looking at no one. Juliet sees Sawyer's look. That line from Bernard seems overly smarmy, but given the triangle of glances that follow, it works.

The final exchange of this encounter seems... loaded, somehow. Perhaps Bernard sees the seeing, and reaches out just a bit to offer Juliet some comfort.

Bernard: You sure you don't want some tea?
Juliet: Maybe another time.

Like, an alternate time?

I've got a lot of riffs on Rose and Bernard. Crazy ideas that will probably get blown away in the first 10 minutes of the premiere. O well. They'll get their own post soon.


Earlier, Frank asks the Shadows if they knock all their friends unconscious, and I've gotta say, I really like the way Alana says, "Only the ones we
like." But then, I might still be crushing on her from when she was all kickass as the anagram-of-Lee-Harvey-Oswald's-name named super merc on THE LONE GUNMEN. =)

The Shadows have shown Frank what's in the box...

Lapidus: What the hell you gonna do with it, anyway?
Bram: We need to show it to somebody.
Lapidus: What for?
Bram: So they'll know who they're up against?
Lapidus: What exactly are they up against?
Bram: Something a helluva lot scarier than what's in this box, Frank.

Who needs to see this? Jacob?

Bram: We're the good guys.

Nobody thinks they're a bad guy.

The circle of ash around the cabin has been broken. Bram points this out to Ilana and she seems to raise her guard. Ilana approaches the cabin and enters. She finds a piece of fabric or tapestry with an image of the statue, macheted into the wall, apparently left as a message to let visitors know where he's relocated. As it's Jacob we find at the statue, it would seem to have been left by him.

Ilana: He isn't there, hasn't been in a long time. Someone else has been using it.

I can't remember when we've seen the circle of ash before, and if/when we saw someone break the circle. A circle like that can be for containment/imprisonment or for protection. So by breaking the circle, the cabin's inhabitant was either freed or exposed. Frack. It really could go either way.

Ilana says that it's been abandaoned for "a long time." Is three years a long time (2004 to 2007)? That was when we Ben first took Locke to the cabin and a ghostly Jacob/Christian threw a poltergeistastic fit. We know that Christian and Claire were both in the cabin in 2004. Built by Horace, whose cabin would it have been? Who would need protection or containment in such a place? Jacob? Esau? Maybe Richard? And who is the someone else that has been using it since 2004? Christian? Esau? And/or Claire?


The camp has been ransacked. I'm unclear on when this scene takes place vs. the time-skip scene in which Sawyer, Faraday, and company take an outrigger out to sea to get to the Orchid and find themselves under fire from a group in another outrigger taken from the beach. If Sawyer and company show up after this, that may be "proof" that the Incident does not alter the timeline.

Locke gets sentimental with Ben...

Locke: It's the door to the hatch, where you and I first met.

He then gets Ben to own up to pretending that he was able to communicate with Jacob in the cabin. "I didn't want you to know that I had never seen Jacob. So, yes, I lied. That's what I do." Locke then explains to Ben why he should and will kill Jacob. Basically that he's done everything he could in the service of Jacob and the Island, but was rewarded with the death of his daughter and exile from the Island.

Sun finds Charlie's Drive Shaft ring in Aaron's crib. The one Locke built.


Sayid's bleeding out. Hurley brakes for Juliet, Sawyer, and Kate in the road.


Locke seems surprised when Richard tells him that this is whewre Jacob lives. Was he expecting the cabin?


Sawyer asks for 5 minutes alone w Jack. They sit down in the jungle for a heart-to-heart. Sawyer tells Jack about his parents dying when he was eight years old. He explains, "That was a year ago... Right now it's July 1977. Which means that happened last year." He explains that he could've taken a sub to the real world and stopped his father from killing anyone, but he didn't.

Sawyer: Because, Jack, what's done is done.
Jack: It doesn't have to be that way.

Sawyer: I don't speak destiny. What I do understand is a man does what he does cuz he wants something for himself. What do you want, Jack?
Jack: I had her, and I lost her.

That. Is. Lame.

Sawyer explains that if Jack's plan works, Kate will be in handcuffs, they'll never have met.

Jack: What's meant to be is meant to be.

So, it's "What's done is done" vs. "If it's meant to be, it's meant to be."

Boyfight! Sawyer plays a little dirty and gets the upper hand. He is pummelling Jack when Juliet steps in to stop him. Juliet then explains that they have to help Jack with his plan. Juliet's changed her mind.


This flashback feels a bit crowbarred in, but it works, does what it needs to do. It's got nothing to do w Jacob (as far as we can see), but it does show us why and how Juliet's mind-changing works.

Juliet's parents sit her and sister Rachel down to tell them about their divorce. Clueless, or wishfully thinking, Juliet asks, "Are we moving again?" Could that possibly be significant?

Mom: Just because two people love each other doesn't mean they're supposed to be together. And, when you're a grownup, you'll understand.


Sawyer: Why are you doing this, Juliet?
Juliet: I... If I never meet you, then I never have to lose you.


Pierre Chang tries to talk Radzinsky out of drilling into the pocket.

Meanwhile, Jack and Kate have a heart-to-heart about Aaron and why Kate decided to come back to the Island.

Kate: I came back so he could be where he belongs.. with his mother.

The psychic in Australia who set up the California adoption originally told Claire that she had to raise Aaron herself, and hinted at a dark future should her child be raised by anyone else. It seemed like he could see that Oceanic 815 would go down with her on it, and, trapped on the Island, Claire would have no choice but to raise baby herself, thusly saving the world.

Sayid looks bad... real bad. "Nothing can save me." Is it possible he doesn't survive the Incident?

Jack heads to the Swan on his own, w the nuke strapped to his back.

Jack: See you in Los Angeles.

Miles then spells out what you should already have figured out, guessed at, or assumed. That the detonation of this H-bomb might in fact be the cause of the history Incident that they are trying to prevent. This suggestion is met with looks and silence, broken by the timely vision of Phil and security approaching the Swan, intent on wacking anyone that looks like a Hostile spy.

Juliet: "Live together, die alone."

Jack tries to make a stealthy approach to the drill shaft, but with the added security, he's spotted. Shootout time!

Here comes the Millenium Falcon!

Poor water hose guy.

Sawyer takes Phil hostage, gets security to drop their weapons, tells Jack to come out. "Hurry up and do your business."

Not quite "Let's blow this thing and go home, kid!" but it'll do.

Jack unwraps the bomb at the top of the shaft "Hurry up, doc. What are you waiting for? Drop it!" Jack looks to Kate. Sawyer looks to Juliet. Jack drops the bomb. Everyone braces for the detonation/Incident.


Sawyer: This don't look like LAX.

Meanwhile, the drill has apparently breached the energy pocket and the shaft goes super magnetic. Pierre is pinned by flying and falling debris and Miles rushes to his aid, "Dad!" I like that.

When Phil gains the upper hand on Sawyer, electromagnetism gets him skewered.

Juliet gets chained.

Sawyer grabs her by the hand in the wreckage covering the shaft. He can't pull her up. The wreckage rips and gives.

Juliet lets go. Man, shivers.


Locke wants to know where Jacob is, wants to see him. When Sun asks, Ben says that the statue was in its present condition when he got to the Island. If he's telling the truth, that means the statue was busted before the 70s.

Locke insists that Ben join him on his visit to Jacob. Richard opens the door and shows them the way, but he stays behind. Is this standard practice? That Richard doesn't approach Jacob, only the Island's leader does? If that's the case, how did Ben receive any orders during his term?

When little Ben was saved by Richard in 1977, Richard explains to an outraged Widmore that it was Jacob's wish that Ben should be saved and converted.


Earlier, Locke told Richard that after they visit Jacob, they would have to "deal with" the remaining Ajira passengers. Richard's surprised. Is Locke referring to the time-tossed Oceanic Six (does he know that's what happened to them?), or to the Shadows?

Ilana asks for Ricardus. Richard smiles, "It's Richard, actually." She asks him the question and he answers, in Latin. She is visibly relieved, almost as if she's thanking the stars for Richard's reply.

Ilana: Richard, I'm Ilana. I have something you need to see.

They dump the crate's contents onto the sand. Locke's body.

Sun: If this is Locke, who's in there?


Locke's given Ben a knife. Ben inspects Jacob's tapestry. Jacob sits in a rocking chair in the corner.

Takes a very long time when you're making the thread. But I suppose that's the point, isn't it?

Esau: Hello, Jacob.
Jacob: You found your loophole.
Esau: Indeed I did. You have no idea what I've gone through to be here.
Ben: Have you met before?
Esau: In a manner of speaking. Do what I asked you to, Ben.
Jacob: Benjamin, whatever he's told you, I want you to understand one thing, you have a choice.
Ben: What choice?
Jacob: You can do what he asks, or you can go. Leave us to discuss our... issues.
Ben: Oh, so now, after all this time, you've decided to stop ignoring me. Thirty-five years I lived on this island and all I ever heard was your name, over and over. Richard would bring me your instructions, all those slips of paper, all those lists. and I never questioned anything. I did as I was told. But when I dared to ask to see you myself, I was told, "You have to wait. You have to be patient." But when he asked to see you, he gets marched straight up here as if he was Moses.

A knowing look from Locke? Were Esau and Jacob around for Moses?

Ben: So, why him? Hmm? What was it that was so wrong with me? What about me?

And here comes a line that seems calculated to bring about his end, perhaps a la "Strike me down and I will become more powerful than you can imagine," donchathink?

Jacob: What *about* you?

Ben nods. Stab. Stab.

Jacob: They're coming.
Esau: What? I can't hear you.
Jacob: They're coming.

Esau-Locke looks alarmed, and then kicks Jacob into the fire. Remember the Others' funeral ritual? Burn/destroy the bodies. Gotta wonder about all the bodies on the Island right now. Charlotte died somewhere in the time skips. Juliet probably perished in 1977 at ground zero of the explosion, eh? How did the Others take care of Faraday/Hawking's son?


Kate and Jack pull Sawyer away from the shaft as more and more machinery is drawn into it. Juliet regains consciousness at the bottom of the shaft. She's in bad shape. She sees the undetonated bomb nearby, grabs a rock, and begins wacking at it, cursing. And, hey, ho, whaddyaknow? It blows up!

Keep on keepin on~

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