Friday, October 30, 2009

LOST S6 Posters & Lost U T-Shirt Contest Winners!

I love that there are exactly 108 entries for this contest. Thank you to everyone who entered! The following three names were drawn from the hat:

Mike Berti
Lost University T-shirt

Rachel (jaychel)
Lost S6 Poster

Jackie McSherry
Lost S6 Poster

Mike, Rachel and Jackie - please email me with your shipping address!

I really appreciate that so many of you entered. Stay tuned for other contests in the next few months, including one seeking creative photos of yourselves wearing my official Lost Fan button at season premiere parties and various locations all over the world (see my Facebook group wall for rules & details if you'd like to receive a button too!).    

Happy Halloween.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Comment Policy Change

For years I have allowed Anonymous comments on all of my sites, but the time has come to change that policy. I apologize to the 99% of you to whom this does not apply, but unfortunately a few less than polite comments lately have forced me to reconsider. 

It has been my experience as of late that those who feel the need to be rude and/or attack me personally in Comments are not courageous enough to leave their names, email addresses or website URLs in return. I will no longer post or respond to the offensive.  

Those of you who frequent this site are familiar with my style, and know that I am open to all feedback and criticism, as long as it is constructive in nature. That is why I've always chosen to moderate comments before publishing them; I do not want this to be a site where readers disrespect me or one another for sharing our thoughts about the show. I will gladly approve comments which disagree with something I've posted as long as they offer an alternative thought or solution, and avoid personal attacks on either me or fellow readers.

I am going to repeat a few statements that apparently I need to reiterate more often. There is a reason that I label a Crazy Theory of the Week with the word Crazy. This is a purely speculative site, and I never assert that my thoughts and theories are right or the best. In addition, I am not a shipper; relationships are my least favorite aspect of Lost, hands down. As someone who has dedicated five years of my life to theorizing and writing about this series, I am entitled to both love and loathe specific characters. That being said, I do not let that affect my analysis of each episode. I am far more interested in each character's possible motivation than I am with their partner of choice.

If you are upset with my policy change, I encourage you to simply not return. Visit other Lost blogs and forums instead, where comments are never moderated. 

For those of you who would like to continue leaving comments, you may do so using any of the following accounts: AIM, Blogger, Google, LiveJournal, OpenID, Typepad and Wordpress. 

Thank you in advance for your understanding.


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Lost Rewatch Week #18: D.O.C., The Brig & The Man Behind the Curtain

Hello and welcome to this installment of the Lost Rewatch! As you know, I am a bit behind schedule, so I really appreciate your patience and kind comments. 

This week's batch of episodes included two of the most powerful, in my opinion: The Brig and The Man Behind the Curtain. Both revealed many answers and surprises, and contained a good deal of mythology which is just as intriguing to this day. 

So let's take a hike just outside of Portland and hope to birth a few ideas together...

Dharma Death Ditch

It appears as if there are deceased Dharma folks in that ditch who died from events other than the Purge. 

Some of the skeleton sculls have bullet holes in them...

Drunk Daddy Club

Ben's father Roger Linus joins the club with fellow members Wayne Janssen and Christian Shephard. 

Fate vs. Free Will

This week's instance of the relevant theme was delivered by Ben, in The Brig:

"When people join us here on this island, they need to make a gesture of free will, of commitment. That's why you're gonna have to kill your father."

Note that in the next episode, Ben does just that. 

Foreshadowing Dialogue


Mikhail: "I already died once this week."

Mikhail: "On his island, wounds are a bit different."

Naomi: "Flight 815? They found the plane. There were no survivors. They were all dead."

The Brig

Ben, to Locke re: Cooper: "YOU brought him here."

Flight Attendant Cindy, to Locke: "We've been waiting for you."

Sawyer: "We didn't crash in the Pacific; we crashed here on this island."
Cooper: "You're sure it's an island?"
Sawyer: "What else is it?"
Cooper: "Little hot for heaven, isn't it?"
Sawyer: "Oh, so we're dead?"
Cooper: "They found your plane on the bottom of the ocean. One minute I'm in a car wreck, and the next minute I'm in a pirate ship in the middle of the jungle. If this isn't hell, then where are we?"

Ben: "Don't tell me what I can't do, John."

The Man Behind the Curtain

Ben: "You do remember birthdays, don't you Richard?"

Ben: "You probably think that I'm the leader of this little community, but that's not entirely true. We all answer to someone, John."
Locke: "And who might that be?"
Ben: "His name is Jacob."

Ben, re: Alpert: "He doesn't know who Jacob is."

Locke, to Ben: "You are the man behind the curtain, the Wizard of Oz, and you're a liar."

Ben, to Mikhail re: Locke: "He's with us now."

Ben, to Locke: "Whether or not you think he's the Wizard of Oz, I can assure you that Jacob is very, very real. This is not a man you go and see; this is a man who summons you."

Ghost Emily Linus: "It's not time yet, Benjamin."

Young Ben: "Take me with you."
Alpert: "Maybe that can happen. If that's what you really want, I want you to think about that. You're going to have to be very, very patient."

Ben, to father Roger: "I've had to put up with you. Doing that took a tremendous amount of patience."

Ben, at Jacob's cabin: "Once I open this door, there's no turning back."

Ben, standing at mass Dharma grave pit: "These are my people, the Dharma Initiative. They came here seeking harmony, but they couldn't even coexist with the island's original inhabitants. And when it became clear that one side had to go, one side had to be purged, I did what I had to do. I was one of the people that was smart enough to make sure that I didn't end up in that ditch. Which makes me considerably smarter than you, John."

Locke, after Ben shoots him: "Why did you do this?"
Ben: "Because you heard him. What did Jacob say to you?"
Locke: "He said 'help me.'"

Ben: "Well I certainly hopes he helps you, John."

Logistics & Locations

Naomi claims that Penny hired her and gave her the island's coordinates, and yet in S5 we saw Matthew Abbadon hire her and Freighter Four on behalf of Penny's dad Charles Widmore....

New Otherton

In The Man Behind the Curtain, we hear but do not witness a Hostile incursion in the barracks. Charles Widmore was still on the island at that time, and I am curious to find out if he was working with or a part of the Hostiles, if it was he or Alpert who was in charge of the group at that point, and whether or not either of them were involved with this particular attack. Given that in S5 we see Alpert seemingly stroll through and/or disengage the sonic fence security system and show up in the barracks to speak with Horace, my money is on Alpert for the previous incursion.


In The Brig, Locke manipulates Sawyer into killing Cooper.

In the S5 finale, NotLocke manipulates Ben into killing Jacob.

Significant Moments/Firsts

We learn that Jin's mother is alive, that she was a prostitute who gave him up at birth.

We see that there is a hidden medical room in the Staff Station.

We hear about the Freighter for the first time, when Naomi mentions it. 

Sawyer finds out that Locke was paralyzed before crashing on the island.

James Ford meets the real Sawyer, and finally avenges his parents' death.

We meet Horace Goodspeed. 

We are introduced to young Benjamin Linus when he arrives on the island with his father Roger to work for the Dharma Initiative.

We meet Ben's island girlfriend Annie.

Young Ben sees his mom (or at least a manifestation of her) outside of his room and then in the jungle. 

Ben admits to Locke that he wasn't born on the island.

Ben kills his father.

We see Jacob's cabin and a very brief glimpse of...someone in a chair. 

Ben and Alpert oversee a Purge of the Dharma folks in New Otherton.

Ben shoots Locke and leaves him in the Dharma death ditch. 

The Temple & The Volcano

In Season 5, we got our first glimpse of both the outside wall and underground tunnel system of The Temple. In The Brig, Ben refers to their new camp site as an "old place." I assume that The Temple used to be located there and that it was destroyed entirely with the exception of one ancient column; it reminds me of the one remaining statue foot of Tawaret. It seems that a major event took place on the island, wiping out both The Temple and Tawaret. 

I have suggested this before and stand by it again (because it is first alluded to in a Dharma classroom in The Man Behind the Curtain)...the island's volcano caused the collapse of the statue and The Temple, although the tunnels beneath remained intact and were still in use when both Dharma and the Others lived there. Dharma teacher Olivia Goodspeed did say to the children that it erupted "a long time ago."

Let's also not forget that Jacob's cabin is surrounded by a thick line of ash. 

Testing, Testing 1 2 3

After Ben tries and fails to make Locke kill his father in front of everyone in the Others' camp, he announces that Locke is "not who we thought he was."

Richard Alpert was present at Locke's birth and tried on two different occasions in Locke's younger life to bring him to the island. Presumably, Alpert traveled off island to do so at Jacob's behest. And even though little Locke failed Alpert's tests and ignored his recruitment efforts in high school, Locke was eventually brought to the island on Flight 815. 

It seems that both Jacob and Alpert never gave up hope in Locke. If I had to guess, Alpert knew that Jacob had revived Locke after Cooper pushed him out of the window, and that he was bringing him to the island...

Richard Alpert: 

"When word got back here that there was a man with a broken spine on the plane who could suddenly walk again, people here began to get very excited. That could only happen to someone who was extremely special. But Ben doesn't want anyone to think you're special."

"We're looking for someone to remind us that we're here for more important reasons."

The Visual and the Visceral

I just want to point out that Dr. Chang has a prosthetic left arm during the Orientation video that plays in the Dharma processing center, indicating that the film was created AFTER the incident...

I've pointed this out before, but they certainly clothe Ghost Emily Linus to look like Alice in Wonderland. Jack follows his father down a virtual rabbit hole on the island, and Ben does the same with his mother. 

Locke's confidence facing Ben in The Man Behind the Curtain is eerily similar to his behavior in the S5 finale...when he was the Mystery Man/Not Locke. 

Annie & Ben

Although she only appeared in one episode, Annie's role in Ben's life still remains atop many lists of lingering Lost questions. When she gave him the carved doll in The Man Behind the Curtain, it was the nicest thing that we've ever seen anyone do for Benjamin Linus. 

[sidenote: When I met the real life Ben (Sterling Beaumon) and Annie (Madeline Carroll) earlier this year, they were both very enthusiastic about their characters and this episode, and hope that they get the opportunity to appear together on the show again. Me too.]

By the way, if you're interested, I wrote an article at the beginning of the year noting similarities between Ben, Annie and To Kill a Mockingbird. Of course we have since learned much more about Ben and Jacob, so keep that in mind if you should read it.

We may have no idea what happened to Annie, but there is no way that Ben would allow her to die in the purge. I would love to find out if he put her on the sub or hid her somewhere else on the island...

Anthony Cooper

It totally struck me when Cooper said that "I didn't raise no dummies." Plural. Locke has a sibling...perhaps one or all of his foster sisters and brother were also fathered by Cooper. 

Ben & Locke

When these two have scenes together, they are arguably the most riveting to watch. I found myself thinking that Ben should hold up a mirror when delivering some of these lines to Locke, as they certainly apply to him as well. Then again, they also apply to Jack...

"You'll never be free until you release the hold that your father has over you."

"The magic box is a metaphor. I can't show you anything until you can show me that you're ready and willing to be one of us." 

In addition, I wonder if Ben provided the intel on Sawyer's past to Alpert, who then gave it to Locke, or if Alpert did so on his own. Refresh my memory...does Ben know that Locke didn't actually kill his father? 

Emily Linus

Was it Smokey or NotLocke who appeared as young Ben's mom? 

The Goodspeeds

It was not a coincidence that Horace and Olivia Goodspeed just happened to be driving by when Roger Linus emerged from the forest with his dying wife Emily and baby son Benjamin. 

Horace must have been married at least two times; to Olivia and Amy (who gave birth to their son Ethan Rom). 


As I stated at the end of S5, I'm not sure that Jacob was ever actually in that cabin. After watching The Man Behind the Curtain again, I'm leaning more toward the thought that the Mystery Man/NotLocke was in fact trapped inside. Thus, he was the one who said "help me" to Locke. 


I remember being a bit concerned after The Brig initially aired that Sawyer may become dispensable after finally exorcising his demons by killing the real Sawyer. Thank goodness I was wrong, because S5 absolutely belonged to Josh Holloway and his character has made the most obvious and impressive transformation in all five seasons of Lost thus far. 

Crazy Theory of the Rewatch Week

I never really realized it the first time around, but the island is rather cruel; it seems to reward men and punish women with regard to children. Juliet reveals that the male sperm count on the island is five times the average, which should result in quite the bounty of babies. However, women who get pregnant on the island never live past their second trimester. 

[sidenote: Ironically, the four toed statue was a goddess of birth and Jacob wound up residing in the foot of it; he was the exact opposite of the nursery rhyme:
"There was an old woman who lived in a shoe. She had so many children, she didn't know what to do."]

Here is my new train of thought....we saw Kate and Sawyer have 'relations' in the cage on Hydra Island, and clearly they did not take the time to ask for or use a Dharma prophylactic. Their rumble in jungle took place under the watchful eye of the Others' surveillance camera. 

SO, when Ben told Kate during their earlier mysterious breakfast on the beach that "the next two weeks are going to be very unpleasant," I have a strong feeling that he informed her that she had to sleep with either Jack or Sawyer to try and get pregnant. Of course he probably threatened their lives and used his typical blackmailing methods. Keep in mind that after returning to their beach, Kate went into Sawyer's tent for Round 2 of an afternoon delight...

Cut to the end of D.O.C., when Juliet records the following message for Ben:

"I'm still working on getting samples from the other women. I should have Austen's soon."

IF this turns out to have some semblance of truth to it, then Ben has failed. That we know of, Kate was never pregnant on the island (or off, as one of the Oceanic Six). 
Again, I am overwhelmed by your kind comments and support, as well as your unwavering patience.  Thank you so much for coming back and following along! I am thrilled to be nearing the end of S3 and looking forward to entering a new season for the Rewatch. Of course the next batch of episodes deal with Charlie's very poignant death, so it will be a bittersweet experience to say the least. 

See you next week, and don't forget to enter to win a S6 Lost poster or Lost University tee! The contest is open until next Friday, October 30.


Monday, October 19, 2009

LOST S6: Posters & T-shirt Up for Grabs

Guilt results in gifting, at least in my world. 

I feel horrible for falling behind in the Lost Rewatch project. Because this week's installment will be posted late due to vacation (and the last one was tardy due to illness), I wanted to offer you the opportunity to win a few items to reward your patience!

The following items are up for grabs. If you live in the U.S., simply leave a comment below with your name and email address, and indicate which item you're hoping to win. 

2: LOST, The Final Season 2010 posters from ABC

1: LOST University t-shirt, size XXL

I will put your names in a hat, draw 3 winners and announce them on Friday, October 30!

Enjoy the rest of your week.


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Lost Rewatch Week #17: Left Behind, One of Us & Catch 22

Good afternoon, Lost friends! Welcome to this week's installment of the Lost Rewatch. I am still recovering from a very annoying and lingering illness, so I apologize for the delay once again. 

Given that this batch of three episodes featured Juliet quite heavily, I enjoyed revisiting her initial arrival both on the island and at the survivor's beach. 

So let's handcuff ourselves to one another and run through a jungle of theories together. 

Anagrams Are Us

Juliet meets Alpert and Ethan at Herarat Aviation before heading to the island. 

Herarat holds two meanings; it warns us that Juliet is a rat (HER A RAT), which we discover at the end of One of Us when it is revealed that she is still working for Ben, and it is an anagram for Earhart (as in Amelia...who disappeared while flying over an island). 

Desmond had a brief stint at a monastery which produced a wine called Moriah Vineyards, which is an anagram for Harmed Visionary. 

This isn't an anagram, but it is interesting...Boone's last name was Carlyle, and Penny was heading to Carlisle when she first met Desmond. Even at the basic level, nothing is mere coincidence on Lost

Crossing Paths

On the run in Iowa, Kate meets Cassidy, Sawyer's ex and his daughter Clementine's baby mama. 

In S5, Kate reunited with Cassidy to give her money for Clementine (per Sawyer's pre-helicopter jump wish). 

Escape Club

After the Others abandoned their village, Sayid noted that "it's like fifty people disappeared into thin air." 

Now that we are aware of an underground tunnel system, an obvious conclusion is that they descended beneath New Otherton to travel to set up camp in a new location.

Fate vs. Free Will

Yet another example/argument for this popular topic:

Ben, to Juliet: "If you CHOOSE to stay, I promise you, we will save Rachel's life."

Fight Club

File under...we'll never know. 

Here are the facts: Juliet is a fertility doctor. She has amazing reflexes and either serious self-defense or marital arts training, and has dislocated her should FOUR times. One of these things is not like the other. 

Foreshadowing Dialogue

Left Behind

Locke: "I don't want to go home, Kate."

Cassidy, to Kate: "I fell in love with the wrong guy."

Juliet, to Kate: "Ben has a thing for mind games."

Juliet, to Kate, about Jack: "You broke his heart."

Diane Janssen, to daughter Kate: "You can't help who you are, Katherine."

One of Us

Richard Alpert, to Juliet: "The place we're taking you to is special. You'll see things there that you never imagined."

Ben, to Juliet, about her sister's cancer: "Jacob said he would take care of it himself."

Juliet, to Ben: "If you can cure cancer, then why do you have it?"

Ben: "I'm not a liar, Juliet."

Ben: "We'll find more mothers. Who knows, maybe there's one on the plane."

Jack, to Juliet: "You want to get off this island more than anything in the world. It makes you one of us."

Catch 22

Brother Campbell, to Desmond: "For whatever reason, your path led you here and now you're ONE OF US."

Desmond: "I had a calling. I was supposed to leave everything that mattered behind, sacrifice all of it, for a greater calling."

Ruth, Desmond's ex: "Well it's a good thing a SHEPHARD didn't help you up."

Brother Campbell, to Desmond: "You've just spent too much time running away to realize what you may be running toward."

Logistics & Locations

I've often pondered and researched possible locations of the island, taking into consideration that it has the ability to 'move.' But the logistics in One of Us are still baffling to me. Allegedly, the sub carrying Ethan and Juliet left from the Miami area. They arrive on the island wearing the same clothes, unwrinkled. 

Regardless of whether that the island at that time was located near Fiji, Micronesia, Indonesia or in the general South Pacific...submarines do not travel much faster than 30-40 miles per hour. That sub has been around since the early Dharma days, and is probably not updated with the most modern technology. Thus, it is beyond unlikely that they actually travel to the island via the sub. Herarat Aviation must be one of their departure points for flights to an unknown locale where the sub is docked. That is why they drug the passengers; not for a rough trip but so that they have no idea HOW they got there. After they fly, the sub is the last method of transportation; it takes them to their final destination, the island. Ethan's comment that "the LAST leg is a little bumpy" merely corroborates this line of thought. 

The cord leading from the beach into the water and Looking Glass station is not located more than a few miles down the beach from where the survivors are living. So how is it that NO ONE besides Desmond & his hiking buddies saw or heard Naomi's helicopter? 

Lost Book Club

Naomi's bag contained a Portuguese copy of Catch-22 by Joseph Heller. The book relates to Desmond on at least two levels; events and perspectives are presented out of order, and one has to decide whether to act selfishly to benefit himself or to work with others for the greater good...

Significant Moments/Firsts

Juliet meets Ben for the first time, upon her arrival to the island via sub.

We find out that Rachel had a son, and named him Julian (after her sister Juliet). 

Desmond meets Penny for the first time.

It is revealed that Juliet was sleeping with Goodwin (long before we discover that he was married to Others' therapist Harper). 

The Visual & the Visceral

When Juliet first looks up to exit the sub, the view reminded me of the perspective we get when glancing down into one of the hatches. 

To me, it is very clear that Juliet reminds Ben of his mother. There have been some who disagree, but taking the painting in Ben's den into consideration as well as the physical resemblance between Emily Linus and Juliet (and, arguably, Carrie Preston & Elizabeth Mitchell)...I do not see how it can be anyone else. 


In addition to needing a fertility doctor on the island, Ben recruited Juliet for his borderline Oedipal complex. 


The branding on Juliet's back matches the symbol on the tree above where the medical supply case was hidden. 

There is a framed photo on Brother Campbell's desk of himself with none other than Eloise Hawking. Given her role in Desmond's life (both in flashbacks and off island in the future), and that she was with Charles Widmore for a is fascinating to consider whether or not she had anything to do with the fact that Des met Penny Widmore for the first time at that monastery when she was picking up wine for Daddy Widmore. 

White Smoke Monster

It has to be significant that Smokey has only appeared in bright flash mode to two people, Juliet and Locke ("I saw a very bright light; it was beautiful."). 

IF Smokey is indeed a representation of or security system for the island, it spared both of them on purpose. Yes, Kate was with Juliet when it seemingly photo scanned them, but I truly believe that Juliet was its target during that particular chase.

And yet, Smokey appeared in typical black smoke form when chasing Kate and Juliet toward the sonic fence. To be honest, general consensus is that Smokey was deterred by the sonic fence, and yet I still wonder if it halted and retreated because of Juliet...


I love Kim Dickens, especially because of Deadwood. She just appeared on FlashForward, and certainly deserves her own show at this point. 

What I love about Cassidy is the way that she accurately reads and honestly speaks to Kate both in Left Behind and in S5 (Whatever Happened, Happened). Cassidy has only made a handful of appearances on Lost, but serves a very important role as one of the few voices of reason off island. 

In Left Behind, Cassidy reveals to Kate that she is pregnant. Here's hoping that she was taking shots of water when she and Kate were bonding at that bar...


Earlier this season, when Locke induced a vision via the sweat lodge and hallucinatory paste,  Boone told him to forget Desmond because "he's helping himself." I was reminded of that statement while watching Desmond take Charlie on that hike to rescue who he thought was Penny, in spite of the fact that Charlie was supposed to die on the way according to Des' own future flash. 

Even though Desmond acknowledges that his the images in his future flashes are out of order, he should have paid more attention to them. In one of the flashes, Charlie is clearly holding the parachute below Naomi, which would indicate that he's still alive after their hike to get to her. 

The following conversations between both Desmond and Brother Campbell and Desmond and Charlie further fuels my Crazy Charlie Theory, given that Charlie ultimately sacrificed his life based solely upon Desmond's vision (Claire and Aaron being rescued):

Desmond: Moriah's the mountain where Abraham was asked to kill Isaac. 
Campbell: And yet God spared Isaac.
Desmond: God may not have asked Abraham to sacrifice his son in the first place.
Campbell: It wouldn't have been much of a test, would it? Perhaps you underestimate the value of sacrifice.

Desmond: I keep saving your life, and what good has it done? Maybe it's a test. 
Charlie: Test?
Desmond: Like God testing Abraham...except that I failed, because I changed what I saw.


Ben asserted that Jacob himself would cure Juliet's sister's cancer. Is it safe to assume that he actually did? All along, we've assumed that the island has healing powers, but perhaps those powers lie in Jacob alone; we've seen him bring Locke back to life OFF island, and he may have done the same for Juliet's sister. 

That Jacob 'allowed' Ben to get a spinal tumor was the first indication that Ben was merely a pawn in his game. 

Even though we are to assume that it was Brother Campbell who helped Desmond from his drunken stupor to the monastery (given that he had a rope tied around his waist), it is possible that Jacob was the man who appeared in that garb to guide Desmond down that path. 


In S4 we see that Matthew Abaddon hired Naomi to escort the Freighter Four to the island, and Abaddon worked for Charles Widmore. 

And yet she had a copy of the infamous Desmond and Penny photo with her when she crashed on the island via parachute. DID Widmore know that Desmond was on the island, or was Naomi also hired by Penny Widmore to find Desmond after discovering her father's mission? 

By the way, it seems rather odd that among Naomi's items in her bag on this dangerous mission, there is a Hawaiian hula girl traditionally found on ones dashboard.  

Rachel Carlson

It never occurred to me before, but Richard Alpert introduced himself to Rachel (Juliet's sister) using his real name. 

When Juliet did not return home after six months, Rachel had to be alarmed and probably filed a report with the police. But Alpert & co. are smart; something tells me that as soon as Juliet left for the island, they coerced and/or blackmailed Rachel not to say a word to anyone. 

That Rachel's cancer had returned in the meantime but then was miraculously cured may have been part of it. 


I'm sure that this is yet another incident we'll never find out more about, but I've always been curious about exactly what happened in Basra...
Thank you again for stopping by and reading along. We are only mere months away from a new and final season, and I for one am very excited to be revisiting what I consider two of the best episodes of the entire series soon (The Man Behind the Curtain and Through the Looking Glass). 

As usual, please leave comments if you'd like to discuss any of the above thoughts or share theories of your own about these three episodes! See you next week.

- Jo