We have almost reached the end of “Lost.” In the penultimate episode, “What They Died For,” we learned… well, what they died for. “They” being the Candidates formerly known as Sun, Jin, and Sayid. You might think the writers would take things easy on the remaining cast after thinning the herd, but nope, not with the finale only one episode away.
The deaths were still coming fast and furious in “What They Died For,” starting with Richard Alpert, who was dismissed almost immediately with a bitchslap from ol’ Smokey. It’s hard to believe they would dispatch Richard so quickly, and with so little fanfare. Like Lapidus, there was no establishing shot of a body, so I have to wonder if he’s still alive. If he is, then I’m sure he’ll live just long enough to give Jack and Co. some vital information.
Was there anyone out there who didn’t expect Ben to give up Widmore? Oh yes, you can hide in my secret room. No way out of there, by the way. Me? Oh, I’ll be right back, I just have to go outside, pick some mangos, so coconuts… oh yeah, and some Smoke Monster!
As for Zoe? Meh. See ya later, new girl. She was creepy, she had potential, but ultimately she was cannon fodder. A high-level lackey, but a lackey nonetheless.
And Widmore? Well, I have to credit my wife on this theory, because it’s hers and it’s a goodie. She thinks that Widmore isn’t really dead, citing the episode in which Ben and Widmore first made mention of “the rules,” and the apparent fact that they can’t kill each other. My wife’s theory is as follows: Ben is still working against the Smoke Monster, but obviously doesn’t want Smokey to know that. Since he doesn’t want Smokey to find out what Widmore was going to use Desmond for, he shot Widmore, knowing that he can’t actually kill the man. This allows him to keep this potentially vital piece of info from Smokey, while still appearing loyal to him at the same time. This is actually quite sound since the idea that Ben is still gunning for Penny Widmore (“He doesn’t get to save his daughter”) doesn’t really wash since Ben already had his chance to kill her and couldn’t do it. It’s much more likely that Ben is pulling his trademark double-cross again, this time against the Smoke Monster.
Speaking of Desmond and his role in the finale, I find it interesting that Widmore said that Des was a failsafe, since that was the name of the mechanism he used to implode the Swan hatch, and made him the time-flashing, electromagnetic guy we all know and love. I wonder what would happen if Desmond entered The Source? Would his vulnerability to electromagnetism turn him into some different kind of entity — one capable of destroying the Smoke Monster?
Jacob makes what may be his last appearance on the show now that his ashes are gone. He tells the remaining Candidates the reason why he brought them to the island was because he made a mistake. That mistake is named Smoke Monster. Sawyer asks why they should be punished for his mistake. “I was doing just fine till you dragged my ass to this damn rock,” he says. Jacob says he didn’t pluck any of them from a happy existence. “You were all flawed,” he says. He chose them because they were like him: alone, and looking for something they couldn’t find. He needs them to protect the island, specifically The Source, from the Smoke Monster. Even more, they need to kill ol’ Smokey. “Is that even possible?” Jack asks. “I hope so,” Jacob says, “because he is certainly going to try to kill you.”
During the course of their conversation, Jacob reveals the reason why Kate’s name was crossed off the list of Candidates. She became a mother. The job’s still hers if she wants it, Jacob says. It was just chalk on a wall. I loved this part of the episode because I’ve been reading all these wild and wacky theories of why Kate’s name was crossed out and not a single one of them was even close. It was like the writers were taking a shot at the obsessed fans and their overly complicated theories.
Jack ends up becoming the new Jacob, but I can’t help but feel there’s more to this than meets the eye. Jack is such an obvious choice — too obvious, I feel. I’m just not buying it. Here’s one of my predictions for the finale: yeah, Jack becomes the new Jacob, but only for a few hours and then he’s killed by someone, Ben maybe, at the behest of the Smoke Monster, because he still needs a proxy to get rid of the new Jacob as he did the old one. Jack may be dead, but he’ll still be around in ghost form, and like Jacob before him, he has to choose a successor. My money is on Kate, if for no other reason than because she would be the most unexpected choice.
It was Locke’s final line of the episode about destroying the island that got me thinking about the purpose of the flash-sideways. His line eerily mirrors the one spoken by the real Locke near the end of the fourth season, when he said they had to move the island. These parallels and the ways in which the writers have played with our perception of time in past (pun intended) got me to thinking.
What if the flash-sideways world, which we’ve been seeing concurrently with the action in the “real” timeline, is actually taking place after the events in the series? What if the thing that Locke does to “destroy” the island results in it sinking? Maybe the Losties succeed in destroy the Smoke Monster, but at the same time The Source goes out. Maybe, like Locke, everyone is just supposed to let go.
In the sideways world, Desmond continues to manipulate the Losties toward some sort of mass awakening, and it looks like it will be taking place at a benefit concert where Jack’s son David will be performing. What will happen once they’re all together is anyone’s guess. Will something catastrophic occur once everyone remembers their lives in the other timeline? Will it cause the sideways world to collapse? Will the worlds merge? There are so many possibilities that I’m not even going to guess. Okay, I will, but you’ll have to tune in here on Sunday night when I’ll be blogging the finale. See you then!