Next: “The Substitute”

“Inside joke.” A great line. A provocative line. A dangerous line. Through some uncharacteristically straightforward expository scenes, this episode pulls back enough to give us the best view yet of the chess board. The game is afoot, our survivors are pawns, and presumably, despite the Man In Black’s plan to quit the island, there’s another showdown brewing. Yet, is it just a game? A battle between two eternal rivals? On many levels, this makes sense. Since Season 1, we’ve envisioned the entire show as an epic, but simple, contest between two sides. But will it be enough? Jen’s worried it may not be. I’m expecting there’s much more to the story.

The Man in Black is trapped. He sees only futility. He says Jacob is wasting lives to protect an island that doesn’t need protecting. Yet as he says this, we think immediately of the sunken island we saw in the premiere. Perhaps the island is not so invincible. And could its destruction bring about a greater, even global, calamity? Possibly.

Do we want this Man In Black running amok in the real world, in any case? Probably not.

Meanwhile, as we piece together this conflict, it’s less obvious that either Jacob or the Man In Black is noble, or good, or right. Jacob has certainly destroyed many lives in the name of protecting the island. And when The Man In Black learns that Jacob never gave Richard the whole story, his sympathy seems real. Neither player seems innocent. The scale with the black and white stones was a nearly too literal illustration of the balance between both sides. A balance that the Man In Black has apparently disrupted. And a balance that I think will prove to be necessary. No matter how frustrated or flawed, whatever forces Jacob and the Man In Black represent, we probably need them both to stick around.

Who was the young boy who appeared in the jungle? My daughter, fixated on his blonde hair, says Aaron… apparently through yet another twist in the space-time continuum. Maybe he was an embodiment of Jacob, in his original or now recycled form. But the way he reminded the Man In Black of the rules, and the way the Man In Black protested with Locke’s signature line, made me think he may actually represent something bigger, or on a higher plane, than MIB and Jacob.

Or maybe he’s just “special” in the way Walt was, giving some hope that there might be some explanation as to what was going on with him throughout the first half of the series.

We also see “The Numbers.” As MIB said, Jacob has a thing for numbers, and each of our iconic numbers is assigned to one of our survivors, who are merely the latest batch of “candidates.” There are other names on the cave wall, with different numbers, all crossed out. Is this the extent of the explanation we’ll get for the numbers? As someone who thought “The Numbers” might just be a McGuffin, I’m fine with that. But I’m hoping there’s just a little more to them.

The dialogue and flashbacks suggest that “Shepherd” is Jack, though it’s fun to think it could mean Christian, or Claire, or even Ray. The stated ambiguity of Kwon (Sun or Jin) is an interesting twist. And if we’re willing to entertain the thought that the boy in the forest is Aaron, why not add Ji Yeon to the list of possible name interpretations. Not depicted in the cave wall roll call? Austen. I’m not sure if that means anything, though, since there were a lot of names we didn’t see, and there were a lot of people on Oceanic 815 that probably didn’t make the list.

And MIB crossed out Locke, his current — and apparently semi-permanent — human form. He explains to Richard that he took Locke’s form to get to Jacob… but I don’t think that was “the loophole,” since it was Ben who did the stabbing. I also figure this can’t be the first time MIB took the form of a “candidate.” I really like the theory a listener shared on our “LA X” podcast that “the loophole” meant Jacob could only be killed by someone carrying his essence (i.e. Ben, infused in the temple spring). I still think, however, it has something to do with who’s the “leader” at any given time. “Unlocke” was allowed inside Jacob’s lair because everyone thought he was the real Locke and thus the island’s current leader, but the highest ranking person was actually Ben, who was therefore capable of killing him.

What does it mean, though, that MIB is “stuck” looking like Locke? He did change into smoke monster form in the premiere, and apparently again tonight in the eerie island flyover. (They definitely cranked up the mechanical elements of the smoke monster’s sound.) If he just can’t look like another person, can he still become a horse? An inanimate object?

The interplay between Sawyer and “Unlocke” was great. As many predicted last week, Sawyer with nothing to lose is a dangerous thing indeed. Having him allied with MIB makes things much more interesting, and I suspect we’ll see more of our survivors choosing different sides. Yet, for all MIB says about Jacob manipulating people, he conned Sawyer pretty good himself. Tapping into his vulnerabilities, offering answers, and even saving his life. It seems clear that dramatic ladder sequence on the cliffside was orchestrated by MIB to earn his trust.

Notes and Notions:

  • It was nice to see Jacob’s off-island visits with our survivors pay off, but really, Jacob’s “master plan” to push all of them to the Island was only introduced in the Season 5 finale. I’m hoping the writers do a little more, and reach a bit further back, to illustrate that they knew where everything was going from the beginning. Until then… it’s still interesting to note that some of his visits were pre-crash, and some were after the Oceanic 6 returned. Why?
  • The off-island stuff is still surprisingly compelling. Locke living with Helen, but ready to give up miracles? A wedding where his father would be welcome? An alarm clock that sounds like the Swan hatch? Hurley slams Randy and offers Locke a lifeline. We see both Hurley’s psychic and Rose at the temp agency. And Benjamin Linus as a whiny European History teacher was spot on.
  • On the “miracles” question, we’re of two minds. On one hand, it seems like Locke’s life off the island is devoid of worth and meaning. Yet what Rose and Helen tell him aren’t exactly “give up.” The message seems more an argument for reason, practicality, comfort and peace. He rips up Jack’s card because he’s done resenting his disability and daydreaming, and ready to start living.
  • Jen asked if Locke somehow never saw Rose on Oceanic 815. It would’ve been great for there to be a glimmer of recognition in their scene together, which of course could be interpreted different ways.
  • The temp agency scene? That was filmed in my office. They took over our entire IT department. Take a look at all the detail work that went into setting up the cubicles shown briefly in the background… even though you didn’t see any of it on screen!
  • Other locations: Locke’s house with Helen is on Alelo Street in Waikele, literally across the street from the home Locke inspected for Nadia. The box company office where Randy fired Locke was in the Hawaiian Telcom building downtown. The parking lot where Locke met Hurley is behind the Gentry Pacific Design Center in Iwilei, across the street from my office. For details, check out my new site, LOST Locations.
  • Books & Music: It was great to hear Sawyer talk about “Of Mice and Men” again. And Jen was impressed in Sawyer’s punk rock playlist: “Search and Destroy,” by Iggy and the Stooges.

What did you think? Please share your thoughts on “The Substitute” (Episode 6×04)! Commenting below is the best way to have your say. You can also email us at lost@hawaiiup.com, or call the LOSTline at (815) 310-0808.

278 Responses to “Next: “The Substitute””

  1. Yann From France says:

    I love the flashsideways… How a spinal doctor and a sick woman and his “boss” all come up together and change his life is amazing.
    The way everything was there from the beginning but they did not succeed to live together, really.
    I continue to think that the characters on Island are pathetic, liar, killers, untrustworthy and who don’t trust. They did not succeed to live together… and they are going to die alone.
    But off Island they are totally finally “together”. (And I am totally on the “we are seeing the end” waggon)

  2. Yann From France says:

    Ben as a “bossy” teacher! AMAZING!
    OK, Unlocke said “I can answer the biggest question there is”… Will I know the answer to Life, Universe and the Rest: it’s 42! It is going to be Kwon.
    So… the manipulator was Jacob. And he wasted their lives by protecting the Island, and now that the Island has sunk all are having better lives.
    I have to admit that team Dark seems a good choice now. But something tells me that they won’t be able to get off the Island before they get rid of Smokey, because what Jacob was protecting is the world form Smokey by keeping him on Island!
    Now my final thought: they are going to go back in time (I don’t know why but it will sink the Island afterward) Sun and Locke will have a final showdown as Jacob/Smokey they are going to die and someone (Ilana probably) will put them to rest in the cave and giving each one his “color” in their hands.

  3. Arbitrary says:

    It made me think the flash sideways have little to do with the incident and are showing us what would have happened without the contacts from Jacob, who died around the same ‘time’ as the incident

  4. Rob says:

    I don’t believe Sawyer was conned by MIB. I think he is running a con by making MIB believe that he is following along. I believe we will see it revealed later this season, possibly in a final showdown.

  5. Alisha says:

    @ Sobaika:

    I think you are on the right track with your theory about Kate. She is obviously “flawed” and no longer able to be a candidate but why bring her to the island then? I also like the theory that she is not a candidate because she is a woman and we can’t rule it out yet because we don’t know whether 42-Kwon is Sun or Jin.

    @ Jeremy:

    Loved the Wanker County comment. Hilarious!

  6. John Fischer says:

    I’m pretty sure that number 20 is Rousseau. You can clearly see the Rou_se..
    The first “s” has the line through it and the bottom of the “s” is hard to see which is why some have guessed that it’s a “p”. See this screencap: http://getlostpodcast.iimmgg.com/image/af8504c4e427e0d12653c614e14f735a

  7. Yann From France says:

    Prediction: When the Black Rock land on Island we will hear Jacob says to MIB: “inside joke”.
    The most amazing thing with this episode is how we knew their was “candidate” and we all (well… lots of us) thought they were candidate for Jacob “reincarnation” (and in fact it is not exactly that… it’s a substitute he was looking for, he was sick of doing this after all those years), we knew that Sayid failed the test and that they were specials and that’s why their keeping the losties in the Temple, Oceanic 6 and how they could be candidate… I mean we could have figure out all that is happening before and yet we did not! The writers are really clever.
    I change some of my “ending” theory. Kate will be the one that is going to take over, protect the world from smokey and die doing so and playing the part of Eve in the cave (check my last post). Kate is not on the wall (the “bad” numbers) yet she has been touched and the most important part: she went back in time with the other candidates, not Sun. Unlocke is totally overlooking her right now (because she is not in the cave) and that’s how she will be able to take care of him. (and reedem herself to all the viewers because finally she will do something for everyone and not just for herself)

  8. John Fischer says:

    Randy calls Locke “Colonel”, which is what Locke calls himself when he’s playing his war games. I haven’t thought about Locke and his war games in a long time.

    Could the entire series just be one of John’s elaborate war games and not real at all? Could it all be in Locke’s head which is why he is the central character in all worlds even after he dies in one, he comes back in another form?

  9. cat says:

    Wow…incredible episode. I’m not sure what my favorite moment was, Ben as a Middle School history teacher having trouble with the coffee machine or the cave.

    At first I thought the child was Aaron, then maybe Jacob but after thinking about it for awhile, I am joining the ranks of those who think there may be a higher being who brought jacob and mib to the island, set the rules and is overseeing the game. Who or whatever that being is will play out over the course of the season. It is fascinating that Sawyer saw him and not Richard which gets back to the theory that Richard is always a 2nd in command and never is the leader.

    So, didn’t see Lapidus’s name up there even though he was judged to potentially be a candidate. A candidate must be someone who can be he leader on the island? Jacob’s general in the war? Only a candidate can kill jacob or take MIB off the island? The cave is filled with candiates and once they are dead then they cease to be a candidate? Littleton is scratched out because she is dead (as we thought) from the house explosion? Or is Littleton Aaron.

    I know that this ep filled us with more questions than answers but boy did I enjoy the ride and I loved every minute of it!

  10. Joy says:

    I thought that was a GREAT episode. WRT on-island stuff…I think the boy is Aaron. It was weird to see un-locke so freaked out by him, though…that seemed to be the first thing we really saw freak him out like that. Almost more disturbing was to see Mr. Cool aka Alpert so unraveled. He isn’t just a little skittish of un-locke, he is completely terrified. I liked the numbers explanation, although I’m wondering why there are people Jacob clearly touched and managed to get to the island who do not have numbers. Was he testing them out somehow to see if they were qualified?

    Some of the off-island connections almost cross the line into cheesy, but I kind of find it nice that all these other 815 people keep coming into Locke’s life in a way that seems to assist him somehow…get him back on some kind of path. But Ben? Doesn’t that seem to negate the theory that Jughead’s detonation was the thing that caused the parallel/sideways timeline to occur? I mean, wasn’t little Ben ON the island when that happened? If that was the thing that caused the island to sink, wouldn’t Ben be dead? If Ben is a teacher in that world, it stands to reason he was never taken to the island by his father in the first place.

  11. Stefani from Mass says:

    @EricfromOhio: your God/Devil/Judas/Angels post is rattling in my brain and made some interesting points. Darlton has said they had a ‘bigger picture’ in place all the time… I’m totally loving seeing all these possible dots getting connected… however, each week provides more questions (the jungle boy) and, possibly, some answers (the numbers?)

  12. Olympiakos says:

    Nice theories but why? Why it should be a contest between black and white/good and bad/god or devil?

    If I remember correctly (during the first or 2nd season) the creators have stated that everything in the end will be explained by scientific theories (they may not be practically proven but still they will be scientific).

    Why they should be 2 opposite sides fighting about the island? Why it should be Jacob or MIB? What is their scientific purpose?

    Personally, I will be extremely disappointed if all there years of the show and all these phenomena are going to be explained with an imaginative mambo jumbo theory about angels,demons,gods,egyptians,aliens and, generally, with something arbitrary. I must admit that until now I think season 6 is the weakest one and believe me I used to be a fanatic of lost. When I saw that there were 2 sides (jacob and MIB) I started to think that maybe the end is not going to be what i thought it was going to be. They should stretch the seasons because of the new contract after all.

    Still, they manage to keep us (as viewers) for 6 years, we advertised the show through this site and many others, we bought the merchandise and they had huge profit from commercials. Its hollywood after all and this will never change (no matter how sophisticated and smart the content appears).We are still an audience which is portrayed as target groups and numbers. Maybe the title of the show is an inside joke on us and all we earned is mittelos.

  13. Glenn says:

    I agree with those of you that believe that the LA X storylines are the ENDING of the show for each of our main characters. In my opinion, they ended John Locke’s story in a perfect place. I feel very satisfied with Locke’s finale — he is finally at peace! I’d be just fine if we never see Locke again off-island.

    I wonder if the reason Ilana cried for Bram and her other companions, but did not cry for Jacob is that she knew he was going to die already. Was it Jacob’s plan all along, and he brought her to the island to help him carry out his instructions after his death? I am very curious about Ilana’s relationship to Jacob and what her role will be as the rest of the final episodes play out.

  14. Yann From France says:

    On my theory… why are MIB and Kate skeleton in the past, I think someone will have to use the wheel to prevent Unlocke to use the mean (boat, plane, submarine…) he is going to try to use to leave the Island and since if you are not touching something it does not go back in time he will end up with nothing to leave. (50years in the past I guess since it is the skeletons age approximatively) And once they will die the Island will sink. Past Jacob will sink with everything and Dharma won’t come to the Island and that is what we are seeing a world were Dharma never went to the Island and where Jacob never talked to our losties! (For once I have a theory that I really like… we will see if it fits in future episodes)
    A boy/cherubin with stigmate… is it God? Going there we could agree with Cooper now: the Island is hell, MIB is the devil, Jacob (lovED by God) has been punished as a warden in hell for a long long time and was looking for a substitute. I dont know but it is possible (but it is unlikely)

  15. Stefani from Mass says:

    Ben as the whiny History teacher reminded me of a few past professors! However, minus the glasses, was he in the same attire as the picture that Miles had when they came to the island on the Kahana? I went looking for the picture and found it on Lostpedia, but can’t find a screen cap of last night’s episode –

    this calls for a rewatch!

    On another note – the numbers in the cave was AWESOME! I didn’t see Goodspeed & Littleton at first watch, but previous posters have added screencaps. But Austen wasn’t there… WHY? And what about Hume & Whidmore & Linus? I really expected to see their names up there, too!

    Last thing: At the end of season 2, when Ben captured Jack, Kate, Hurley & Sawyer and said they were on ‘Jacob’s List’ – Hurley was just taken to go back and tell the others… but Kate wasn’t on the wall… what’s up with that? I’d assume there really was a list, but then why wasn’t Kwon or Jarrah on that list too? Not enough bear cages?

  16. Yann From France says:

    @Stefani: Michael list was not a Jacob list! And Ben did never said they were on the list! It is the opposite, Tom said that he did not understrand why Ben was doing chirurgy with Shepard while he was not on Jacob list.
    The last Jacob list has arrived with the Ankh.

  17. Doug says:

    Ouch steady with the main page we don’t get to watch till Friday here in the UK 🙂

    I will pop back then lol

  18. Harold CBD says:

    Sawyer (showing self-contempt): I thought you were dead.
    MIBLocke (with O’ Quinn’s trademark Mona Lisa Smile): I am.

    Best line ever!

    Harold Claimed By Darkeness

  19. paintergirl1 says:

    Here is my husband’s theory. Good for a laugh!

    According to MiB, Jacob has been looking for a replacement. Perhaps, Jacob is really … wait for it … Willy Wonka! Take a look at the parallels.

    Jacob = Willy Wonka
    MiB = Slugworth
    Jack = Charlie
    Christian = Grandpa Joe
    Kate = Varuca
    Sun = Violet
    Sawyer = Mike
    Hurley = Augustus
    Apollo Bars = Scrum Diddly Umptious Bars
    Others = Oompa Loompas

    Sorry. My husband and I had a really good laugh over this last night, and I thought you all might enjoy it :)!

  20. paintergirl1 says:

    Here are my real thoughts:

    I was impressed with Sawyer’s perceptions last night. He saw through MiB immediately as a not-Locke. He also saw the young boy who Richard either didn’t or couldn’t see. Perhaps this is one of Sawyer’s abilities. Remember, he could also see Kate’s horse in the middle of the jungle.

    As much as I believe MiB is good and Jacob isn’t, I fairly certain Sawyer is getting played by MiB. I think his recruitment efforts are also to find a replacement. I don’t want to see a Smokey Sawyer. Hasn’t he been through enough already?

  21. Kira says:

    Someone said Kate’s not on the list because she killed her dad, but Sawyer and Jin are also killers/bad people. I like the theory mentioned above about the remaining 6 canidates/survivors being split 3 and 3 (totalling 54 and 108 doubled) by their assigned numbers , good and bad, against each other when the have to take sides.

    Why aren’t there hundreds of names on the wall of the other possible ‘canidates’ over the years? We know that people have been ‘brought’ to the Island (mib to jacob-‘you brought them here’) for a very long time. Why now do they need a canidate? I also think it’s Smokey’s cave. And I don’t think Sawyer is really 100% on board, he’s not the instantly trusting type..

    Loved Hugo ‘Trump’ Reyes-the mega-enterpreneur! He owns the chicken place, Locke’s work, a temp agency, who knows what else. Hilarious.

    What happened to Rose and Bernard in the Island senario when the bomb went off and they were living in the hills by themselves? Are they now in the same time as everyone else or in the 70’s still? Did you have to be close to the bomb to feel the effects? Hmm..they were the original Adam and Eve of earlier posts..

    Maybe more later, thanks everybody! Awesome theories!

  22. LReene says:

    A quick thought this morning after reading (and re-reading) all the posts, and thoughts as to who is good and who is evil.

    Could the “Room 23” film segment “God Loves You As He Loved Jacob” shed any light? Thoughts anyone?

  23. Justin in Wichita Falls TX says:

    Let me of course start by saying HOLY FREAKIN CRAP! I was blown away by this episode. Definitely had it all. Alot of OMG (oh my gosh) moments, IKI (I knew it) moments, WTF (why the face) moments. All around, this episode was the best thus far. Being a Locke-centric episode, I already expected the best. Since “Walkabout”, Locke’s off island scenes were always the most compelling. (Along with Ben’s) I also enjoying spening a sequence as the smoke monster. That was all in good fun. I absolutely loved the combination of mythology and the character story in this one. We were shoen that the candidates were all a coordinating number and why they were brought to the island, which is a huuuuge reveal. My money is on it being a different shephard, probably christian, while Jack will probably see it and believe it is himself. And how about Ilana’s relationship with Jacob? I’d venture to say they were a little more than friends. I thought that Hurley has never seemed more badass than he did in this flashsideways. He just really seems like he has more confidence. And of course, can’t say enough about Josh Holloway, his drunken conversation with Locke was so reminiscent of season 1. Wonderful regression on his part. So who better than to join the forces of the man in black than someone who has no one. I’m excited to see where Richard fits into this as well. Looking forward to this war raging on!

  24. Carol from Boston says:

    I am not sure who said this, but I think it is a good theory. What is happening on the island NOW will cause what is happening in the flash sideways in 2004.

    I also think the MIB could be Locke in the flash sideways for several reasons

    MIB says “Don’t tell me what I can’t do”. Maybe that is his signature line not Locke’s and he says it when he is Locke.

    MIB and sideways Locke both talk about a body and spirit being separate things (when locke was talking to Jack about his dad’s body)

    Ilana says the MIB is stuck in Locke’s body and can’t change again, so he is frustrated at being in a wheel chair.

  25. Carol from Boston says:

    Also worth talking about: how we are left with the same mysteries that were in season one.

    1. We don’t know exactly what Kate did anymore.

    2. Why is Locke in a wheelchair? If his father pushed him, why would he invite him to the wedding?

    3. Where is Jack’s father’s body?

  26. Barry says:

    Did anyone else notice that the scale in the cave WASN’T perfectly even when they first walked in? It was tilted more towards the black rock side of the scale, suggesting that side was winning. And then Man In Locke throws away the white rock to cement that the black side would ultimately win.

  27. lucydog says:

    @Stefani from Mass–

    yes, i mentioned that earlier that the Ben History teacher in the X timeline looks like the Ben in the photo that Miles had when he came on the tanker and said “we’re looking for him.” So, does that mean that Charles Widmore had that photo taken of him in that time line? That the whole thing is on a loop?

    I’m not so sure if the X timeline is the conclusion for the characters—I’m not sure if there are enough episodes—it would mean the Kate story is left hanging, right?

  28. Dave582 says:

    My only question (not really) is…Did anyone see the giant spider crawl off Locke’s body when they decide they need to bury him? What was that about!?

  29. LReene says:

    @lucydog (and others) –

    Personally, I don’t have any doubt in my mind but that we are dealing with “A Loop”. I think this was confirmed when team Darlton stated that the choice of “Feb 2, Ground Hog Day” for the premiere was NOT a coincidence. Which “part” of the loop we are seeing, and when, is the big question I believe.

    My fear is, the ending of the show IS going to be like the beginning. Jack’s eye opening in the jungle. I have thought this for a very long time.

  30. Moriah from VA says:

    I was really curious about Ilana’s statement that MIB is now stuck as Locke. What does that mean about what Ben saw under the Temple wall? I always assumed that Alex was just MIB possing as Alex, similarly to possing as Yemi to Mr. Eko. Is this an error in the show or is it possible that MIB can briefly posse as someone dead?

  31. John Fischer says:

    For what it’s worth Lostpedia reports that the casting call for the boy in the jungle read “Teenage boy, Caucasian, 12-14. Dirty blond hair. Wise beyond his years. He’s got intense, searching eyes. He’s dealt with a horrible family accident. Even at a young age, he has been put in charge of something very important, and it weighs heavily on his shoulders.” Interesting.

  32. Bill says:

    I believe the blond kid is Aaron. I remember him watching TV and telling Kate something about a cartoon train and a tunnel. Smokey resembled a train when it went after Keamy and the mercenaries.

    I think we will learn that the buried dead bodies have a different quality, purpose or potential (or lack thereof). Did Locke receive the complete burial? We only saw a few shovels of dirt/sand. Loved the Frank Lapedis’ remark, “this is the weirdest funeral I’ve ever been to.” Murderers rarely confess at the grave site.

    Thanks ABC for airing the prior episodes with the info footnotes. I learn something every week.

    Hey Ryan, that’s cool your office was used in a shot. Also, where was the cliff with the rope ladders and cave filmed? Was it Makapuu Point area?

  33. Jesse says:

    Ok …wow…
    some great Feedback this week. Expected of course because of the great episode. I’ll call in to Ryan and Jen with my comments for the Podcast laster today, but I had some comments for you guys:

    @Eric from Ohio: While your email/theory is a sound one. I’m totally convinced that is almost the easy way out. It sounds good. But it comes off almost like the third Matrix Movie to me. The first Matrix set up this amazing plot device and the second one (while it could have been better) had a twist they could have run with…but the third one just turned into a good vs evil, our hero is a jesus figure thing…and all the amazing things they could have done…just weren’t there.
    I would hate for Lost to just be God vs Devil.

    @Rich in Cleveland: Good call on the fabric scene.

    @yann from france: I mention you in my feedback call 😛 Your Kate will take over thing.

    BUT, I want to throw some questions out the masses.

    What do candidates have to do with rules and the game? And what does that all have to do with the coming war?

    And does fake locke getting off the island have to do WITH the game OR is it his way of saying “I want out of the game”?????

  34. Rich in Cleveland says:

    To clarify, in my post above, Locke in his flash sideways gives in to the idea first presented by AJ and reiterated by Rose that there are things he “just can’t do.” He is no longer that much better man, that man of faith as a result of his trip to Australia.

  35. Jesse says:

    @Rich but who is to say what is the better man. The Man of Faith took had so many ups and downs and believed so completely that he was important in the grand sceheme of things that he is now the puppet of some very bad man.
    The Locke off island is finally content.

  36. Jesse says:

    wow… I had tons of typos in that reply

  37. Lorne says:

    Very cool ep. I also hope that isn’t the end of the numbers. I was wondering, has the MIB ever lied? He avoids questions, responds with questions and seems to answer with half-truths. Does anyone have an instance where he’s straight out lied? Any chance there’s a rule where he cannot lie?

  38. Astro1derboy says:

    I believe we could learn the island’s true nature and STILL have the series end just as it started (close up on Jack’s eye…or similar). I don’t think it would discount all the previous episodes at all. I think it would be cool to imply a grand-loop at the very end of the series while having given us the reasons for it on the large-scale.

  39. Michael says:

    Did anyone notice what words were on Helen’s shirt. Don’t know if it was a deliberate message…

  40. Ian M. says:

    I hope the finale ends with the explanation of Adam & Eve…and thus shows that they had plans from the beginning of the series.

  41. Rusty says:

    At first watch, I thought this was a great episode. Its interesting to see how alternate timeline lives keep intersecting. Based on MIBs comments, we are meant to believe that each “candidate” is being lead (or pushed) towards the island. We’ll probably continue to see this theme with the remaining characters – they all return in time for the final showdown.

    We are meant to believe that (1) good and evil are locked in a centuries-old battle on this magical island (fine); (2) there are special rules that they must abide by, and some higher power that enforces these rules (again, fine); (3) that people are periodically selected as pawns to play out this recurring battle; (4) these peoples’ lives are manipulated in order to bring them to the island, but only their free will can determine the outcome on the island. That’s all fine.

    Meanwhile, another group of people (the Others) has lived on the island for generations, serving Jacob, and dealing with any interlopers who accidentally arrive. Good interlopers are identified (ie Cindy and the kids) and allowed to join; bad interlopers are eliminated (Dharma at the purge).

    At times, the Others seem to know all about the conflict between good/evil. They know about the rules, and about the existance of candidates. What they didn’t know was this: that Jack, Sawyer, etc were the latest group of candidates personally selected by Jacob. Ben didn’t know this; Richard didn’t either. Dogan didn’t until Hurley gave him the ankh with the list hidden inside. From that point on, the Others treated our gang differently.

    Who was on Hurley’s list? Jack, Kate, Sayid, Hurley and Jin. What about Sawyer? Somehow, Dogan knew Sawyer was important. Perhaps his name was also on the list. Maybe Miles too – which is why the Others captured them without harming them. My guess is that Jacob’s list included the names of all of the time travelers. Hence, “they’re coming”.

    In the cave, MIB showed Sawyer another group of names: Jack, Sayid, Hurley, Kwon (it has to be Jin), Sawyer and Locke. These names all had corresponding numbers (THE numbers!). What does this mean for Kate? She may or may not have been listed on the cave wall – we really don’t know. But we do know she doesn’t have a number, so presumedly she isn’t a “candidate”.

    Then again, everything in the cave, and everything MIB said to Sawyer, could be a lie.

  42. kiaha says:

    Ok I still think its wrong they didn’t bring back MR. Eko, and Ana Lucia, in this Season ending Lost. Especially since Smokey killed Mr. Eko?, I wonder if
    they will bring in Ben’s Daughter at any Point in the show because of her
    encounter with the smoke monster? or not. So much story line with the Smoke monster and Unlocke it is really confusing. Not to mention they is
    so many side stories in Lost its driving me crazy, and the plots aren’t making
    any sense. And watch this year, when the emmy’s and golden globes come out Terry will be nominated but they will probably give it to Dexter, or Madmen actor , if not the Mentalist, thats just how Hollywood is.
    That is to the response on why the Charachter who plays locke should
    win the award this year for his acting and I agree. More so then the way
    Ben plays the sneaky charachter he is.
    I really think they should make Richard a Key role in this Season and
    just as powerful as Jacob and unlocke if not as strong then just a supporting role. And then what about Desmonds arrival on the island
    how are they really going to play that in , in this show? and penelope?,
    and from what I know they are brininging back Libby, and Michael, and
    if you ask me. Doing that and not bringing back Mr. Eko, or Ana lucia
    really F-k’s up the Plot and story big time. Those were the main charachters in the beginning i liked, I’m atleast glad they kept sayyid,
    I hope they make him stronger as the time goes on. And please whatever
    they do with this series, I just pray that they don’t drag this Smokey
    chrachter and unlocke for like 4-5 episodes before they finally really
    tell us what is finally going on. If I know how LOST AND DAMON IS…
    they will just do that..and by the time we reach episode 10 or 11 they
    will f-k up the storyline big time and we will have like 5 more episodes
    to chomp down before we see what the hell is really happening and
    going to happen to all the charachters GOOD AND BAD!.
    i JUST hope that they would clarify all this drama in the next 2 episodes
    before its episode 7 or 9 by then its to late…Especially in an ending
    Season final like this..If you ask me if they do that that is pretty f-k’d up?
    And this paradox parallel LOST STATE that is going on both time lines
    is really screwing up the story big time. I know many might like it, but
    please if they could do me a favor and some others, they could have
    just could have not done that and cut that part completely and just
    focused on the main charachters, and charachter development and
    try to talk more about them then 2 world stuff they are trying to pull.
    Because in the end, they are really going to f-k it up with how the current
    time line is going to end, and the past…

  43. Wendy in SC says:

    The names being paired with the numbers reminds me of something that I have always wondered about –

    in the hatch painting, the number 108 is painted inside a giant sun. So I have always thought that Sun would be important.

  44. JB says:

    Bad Twin …. Unlocke is Locke’s bad twin, no?

    also, mustn’t MIB have been inhabiting the Christian character previously (‘Unchristian,’ lol)? Like Locke, Christian also arrived at the island dead in a coffin, but his form appeared later. I bet Christian’s dead body is still somewhere on the island, like Locke’s.

    the ‘bad twins’ like Christian and Locke are in contrast to those infected with ‘the sickness,’ like Claire and Sayid, who instead of being spawned into separate entities, remain in the same body but are ‘revived.’

  45. Danielle in Pa says:

    I can see some biblical themes in this episode. God wants us to believe in Him based on Faith alone, but He also gave us Free Will so that we may make our own choice to believe. I see Jacob representing Faith and Free Will and MIB representing Reason and Destiny. Jacob wants people to believe in him based on faith- he doesn’t give his followers the “reason” they should believe, he just asks them to work with him. MIB doesn’t believe and thinks he has all the answers (just as Satan tempted Jesus in the desert- trying to tempt him with all the secrets to life) and truly believes that others will join his side b/c they want answers, too. This works on Sawyer who wants answers and is willing to follow MIB, but does not work on Richard, who has faith in Jacob and can not be tempted to follow MIB.

  46. DannyZ from Philly says:

    Just noticed Locke drinking out of a black and white coffee mug in the bathtub! GAH!

  47. Jesse says:

    This is for the people who are starting to believe this is God v Satan.

    When Locke tells Saywer he was a man just like him…
    he is either lying or telling the truth.

    I would have to assume telling the truth. Becuase the Devil’s whole back story is that he was furious at God for treating Man so much better than the angels and Satan was like “oooooh heeeecky nooo!”. So I highly doubt someone who despises humans so much would ever want to be anything close to them at all.

    I’m telling you there is something else at play here besides God and Devil.

  48. erickupers says:

    I loved the scene in the cave with UnLocke and Sawyer. But I don’t trust UnLocke one bit. I believe the cave is his, and that he is the one writing and crossing off names. Why would Jacob do that in that cave, when his lair seems to be under the 4-toed statue?

    Also, when we first meet MIB, he is complaining about people coming to the island and making the island that much worse every time. He seems to be the one thinking the island needs protection.

    Perhaps Jacob’s visits to the Losties off-island was to touch them and give them some kind of protection from MIB, as he knew that MIB would try to “recuit” them.

    Could the blond boy in the forest be some kind of personification of the island itself…the spirit of the island?

  49. Danielle in Pa says:

    One more thought for consideration… What if Dogen was secretly not on Jacob’s side? I was thinking about how he had Sayid placed in the water, despite the color being wrong, despite it not healing his hand. Then he had Sayid in there until he died and does not act surprised. He only acts surprised when Sayid awakens. Now suddenly he wants to kill him again b/c “he’s infected”. Then he proceeds to inform Jack that Claire is infected and beyond hope. What if Dogen really wants to kill off this group of Losties? What if he were an inside man for MIB? Just a thought!

  50. I thought this was a really good episode! Finally some insight on the numbers, though it still opens up the door to more questions. On Locke tearing up Jack’s business card: Helen said that meeting a spinal surgeon was destiny. So, I think it was Locke making an gesture of free will. An act of defiance.

    My feeling that ultimately this show is about free will versus destiny. In any case it’s certainly a major theme of the show.

    On another note, my friend Lyndsey (also a huge LOST fan) texted me on the after noon of February 9th that she saw Michael Emerson at Dick Blick art supplies on Beverly Blvd in Los Angeles. I wonder if he’s done filming and what that means for his character?

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