Monday, February 01, 2010

LOST: He changed the rules...

I've rambled before about "He changed the rules." It's what Ben says when he sees his adopted daughter Alex gunned down in front of him by madman merc Keamy. This is how he reacts to her death.

"He changed the rules."

Given the situation, he seems to be refering to rules of conduct or engagement between himself and his nemesis, Charles Widmore. However, as I've rambled, I think that given the tragedy of the context, the significance of the rules is greater than some kind of gentleman's agreement. The rules have to do with physical laws and historical events and knowledge, perhaps knowledge of the future.

I usedta think that Widmore and Hawking engineered the creation of a spacetime x-factor in the form of the hatch-imploding Desmond. An agent whose presence could thwart destiny, redirect the course of human and superhuman events. He's the one character walking around who has the ability to rewrite history or create a new timeline, altho we've seen how the universe does its best to self-correct when he repeatedly saves Charlie in 2004 from several deadly fates in FINAL DESTINATION fashion.

However, the end of season 5 shows us that there is yet another bigger picture framework to the events involving the Island. Another dimension of a chess game, beyond Linus vs. Widmore, played by Jacob and Esau.

(I'm assuming the other guy is Jacob's brother and, borrowing from the Old Testament, I'm calling him Esau.)

The changed rules may in fact go deeper than Ben can guess. I would say they're connected to Esau's search for a "loophole" through which he would be allowed or able to kill Jacob. Perhaps Esau's rule-bending machinations, which led to his possession of a John Locke doppelganger in 2007, also resulted in, or in fact required, manipulations of Ben's life and rules. In fact, the banished, wheel-turning Ben is the agent of Locke's death, which, I think it's safe to say, is a prerequisite for the creation of Esau-Locke. And the death of Ben's adopted daughter sets the stage for his judgement by the smoke monster, who, in the form of his daughter, orders him to carry out Locke's every request. Convenient for Esau-Locke, eh? He tells Ben to kill Jacob, and, thanks to Monster Alex's influence, he can't refuse.

I believe that the smoke monster is an aspect or servant/pet of Esau. We were led to believe that the smoke monster saved little Ben in 1977, weren't we? Richard carries him into the temple, which we've seen is guarded ferociously in 1988 by the smoke monster, who apparently resides in a subterranean chamber there.

Yeah, at the end of season 5, when they detonate Jughead on top of the Swan anomaly in 1977, I totally believed that that was the Incident that we hear about in 2004. That this is exactly what happened, always was, always will be.

However, months later (in my time), I'm thinking that it would be way more fun and interesting if the Incident CAN change history.

I've clung to a little bit of LOST for a long time that I'd sort of written off as throwaway and maybe just a loose end, but it comes back to me as something important when I think about this—Charlie's (lame) death. *And* Desmond's vision of it. He told Charlie (I don't think we actually got to SEE any of Desmond's vision, did we?) that if he died the way he saw him die (in the Looking Glass, drowned after flipping the switch on the transmitter), then Claire and Aaron (I'm assuming BABY Aaron and not toddler Aaron) would get on a helicopter and leave the Island. That's how his vision worked.

Well, Charlie DID die the way he saw him die, but hey, ho, whaddyaknow? Claire's still on the Island. Aaron was being cared for by Kate, and now, in 2007, is in the hands of Claire's mother. Now, how are we ever gonna get to see the rest of Desmond's vision realized?

The Incident. An alternate/new timeline. Perhaps one in which Penny's boat gets to the Island before her father's freighter...?

It seems crazy to let a practical footnote of the 5 seasons so far be the hinge on which such a huge event should turn, but that's on the reasoning/guessing side of things. On the writing/storytelling side of things, that was just a clue to what's to come.

Provided it's not just crazy talk. =)

So, what am I saying here? Hrmm...

Although it goes against the consistent time travel physics laws the show has laid out and followed for five seasons (with slightly wrinkly exceptions for x-factor Desmond), which dictate that what happened, happened, I *WANT* for the Jughead Incident to create a divergent timeline in which things unfold differently but still lead to our familiar Lostaways being stranded on the Island but ultimately rescued, without the supernatural Island strings attached in the show's original timeline... Which might in fact be an alternate timeline itself.

Yeah. That.

Some last not quite connected or fully baked bits and pieces...

If the Incident DOES pop us all into a new timeline, it will be a timeline that diverges at the time of the Incident in 1977, right? That means that 27 years of butterfly effect will have propagated by 2004. Without a pocket of energy at the Swan site, there's no reason for a Swan station. No Swan station, no buttone pushing, no Kelvin, no three years of shelter for Desmond. And who knows what became of the DI members at ground zero in 1977. Radzinsky? Pierre Chang? Are their fates different in the wake of the Jughead Incident vs. the original Incident?

Things is, we ARE talking about the Island, and the DI, and the Others. Their impact and interaction with the outside world is limited when they're fully staffed and operational, right? So, it's not like the Nazis will win World War II or something. It's that there's no Swan station, no Desmond and Kelvin, and no missing pushing the button that causes 815 to fall out of the sky.

At least, not the way it did.

Like the bridge crew of the Enterprise in STAR TREK, maybe this group of individuals is fated to come together. And y'know, even if all of history from 1977 to 2004 is rewritten, I'm betting that there's one guy who remembers how it used to be, how it's supposed to be—Desmond.

Now, story-wise, we'll need Desmond to be motivated to get to the Island and get this new timeline more in line with the original one. What kind of motivation? I'd say it would have to be Penny, his constant. She's living a different life in this timeline. I'm thinking LOST does IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE. Actually, this could fly with Desmond and all the Lostaways who were at ground zero. Being time travellers to begin with, I'd let them retain memories of the original timeline, too. Heck, maybe the entire Island is exempt from historical rewrite...?

I also wonder if the same relative time has passed in 1977 between Jack & co's arrival and the Incident as in 2007 between the Ajira 316 crash and Ben stabbing Jacob...

Keep on keepin on~

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