Sunday, December 27, 2009

LOST Rewatch Week #24: Because You Left, The Lie, Jughead & The Little Prince




Post-holiday greetings, patient Lost friends! Just so you know, I will be accelerating my pace to complete Season 5 of this Lost Rewatch by January 28, which is when I will be heading to Oahu for the S6 premiere on the beach! You may notice that more episodes will be combined into fewer posts, with lengthier content. 


So without further delay, let's skip through time and avoid flaming arrows together... 


Anagram Alert!





Appropriately enough, the name on the side of the van that Ben uses to transport Locke's body (Canton-Rainier) is an anagram for REINCARNATION. 


Bloody Hell


As a side effect from the frequent time shifts, the following people get bloody noses:




  • Charlotte
  • Miles
  • Juliet
  • Sawyer





They obviously occur in order of longest time spent on the island. Charlotte was born there and left as a young girl, Miles was born there and left as a baby, Juliet had been there for three years and Sawyer for less than a year. 


Broken Arrow


In the opening scene of S5, Dr. Chang is filming a segment for an Orientation film and reveals that the Arrow station's primary purpose is "to develop defensive strategies and gather intelligence on the island's hostile indigenous population."





The Arrow has always seemed significant to me for many reasons. First of all, Radzinsky cut out important parts of the Swan film and put the excess footage into the Bible that Eko later discovered after crashing on the island. 





In S4, Horace appeared in Locke's vision wearing an Arrow jumpsuit and in 1970's S5 (wearing the Arrow jumpsuit), he instructed Phil to call that station because they were on high security alert. And I can only assume that Mikhail either visited or was stationed there at one point, given that Eko also found a glass eye in the Arrow. 


Foreshadowing Dialogue


Because You Left


Dr. Chang: "This station is being built here because of its proximity to what we believe to ben an almost limitless energy. And that energy, once we can harness it correctly - it's going to allow us to manipulate time."


Dr. Chang: "There are rules; rules that cannot be broken. If you drill even one centimeter further, you risk releasing that energy. If that were to happen...God help us all."


Jack: "How did we get here - how did this happen?"
Ben: "It happened because you left, Jack."


Ben: "Obviously John's visit to you made an impression. What did he say to you to make you such a believer?"
Jack: "Everyone we left behind - John said that they'd die too if I didn't come back."
Ben: "Did he tell you what happened to them after the island moved?"
Jack: "No he didn't."
Ben: "Then I guess we'll never know." 


Faraday, on the Zodiac raft after the island moved: "We must have been inside the radius."


Faraday: "Think of the island like a record spinning on a turntable, only now - that record is skipping. Whatever Ben Linus did down at the Orchid station, I think it might have...dislodged us."
Miles: "Dislodged us from what?"
Faraday: "Time."
Juliet: "So that's why our camp is gone - because the island is moving through time?"
Faraday: "Either the island is, or we are. And it's just as likely that we're moving, your people and us."





Locke: "I know who you are. Your name is Ethan."
Ethan: "Who are you?"
Locke: "My name is John Locke. I know this is going to be hard to understand, but Ben Linus appointed me as your leader."
Ethan: "That is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard."


Sawyer: "When are we now?"
Faraday: "We're either in the past or in the future."

Widmore: "You mentioned that you and I had common interests. Why don't you tell me exactly what they might be."
Sun: "To kill Benjamin Linus."


Sayid: "I was working for Benjamin Linus."
Hurley: "Wait, he's on our side now?"
Sayid: "If you ever have the misfortune of running into him, whatever he tells you - just do the opposite."


Charlotte: "Do you think he's looking for us?"
Miles: "Who?"
Charlotte: "Widmore."
Miles: "It took him like twenty years to find this place the first time."


Faraday: "You cannot change anything. You can't. Even if you tried to, it wouldn't work. Time, it's like a street. We can move forward on that street, we can move in reverse - but we cannot ever create a new street. If we try to do anything different, we fail every time. Whatever happened, happened."
Sawyer: "So how do we stop it?"
Faraday: "We can't stop it."


Locke: "It was Ethan who shot me."
Richard Alpert: "What comes around, goes around."


Locke: "When am I?"
Alpert: "That's all relative."
Locke: "When the sky lit up, where did you go?"
Alpert: "I didn't go anywhere, John - you did."





Alpert: "The only way to save the island is to get your people back here, the ones who left. You have to convince them to come back."
Locke: "How am I supposed to do that?"
Alpert: "You're going to have to die, John."


Faraday: "If it didn't happen, it can't happen. You can't change the past."





Faraday, to Desmond: "You're the only person who can help us because the rules don't apply to you. You're special...uniquely and miraculously special. Right now, me and everyone you left behind - we are in serious danger. I need you to go back to Oxford University, go back to where we met. I need you to go there and find my mother. Her name is..."


The Lie


Ghost Ana Lucia, to Hurley: "You've got a lot of work to do."


Ghost Ana, to Hurley: "Libby says hi."


Ben: "Find yourself a suitcase. If there's anything in life you want, pack it in there...because you're never coming back." 
Jack: "Good."


Jughead


Young Ellie Hawking, to Faraday: "You just couldn't stay away, could you?"


Sawyer, about young Widmore: "Why didn't you shoot him?"
Locke: "He's one of my people."


Young Widmore: "Their leader is some sodding old man. You think he knows this island better than I do?"


Locke: "How did you know Richard would be here?"
Juliet: "Richard's always been here."


Locke: "Your name is Charles Widmore?"
Young Widmore: "What's it to you?"
Locke: "Nothing. Nice to meet you."


The Little Prince


Jack: "Are you with me?"
Kate: "I've always been with you."

Jack: "Ben is on our side."
Sayid: "The only side he's on is his own."


Jack, to Kate: "I can fix this. Aaron is my family too."


Sawyer: "I was close enough to touch her. If I wanted to, I could've stood right up and talked to her."
Juliet: "Why didn't you?"
Sawyer: "What's done is done."


I Can See for Miles


We start to get hints that Miles knows far more about the island than we thought. He knew that Widmore had been there before, that Charlotte grew up there, etc.


I also noticed the second time around that in The Lie, Miles takes off into the jungle to get food for his group, and he does so with an arrogant confidence reminiscent of S1 Locke. Miles clearly knows where to find a boar and how to kill it by himself...perhaps he communicates with some of the deceased folks on the island to glean such information. The man is a ghost whisperer, not a hunter. 


LOST Book Club


Of course the episode The Little Prince relates to the book by Antoine de Saint-Exupery. Besides the fact that it starts with a plane crash, there are references to a magic box, inactive volcanos, a lamp post planet and more. In addition, Rousseau's wreckage contained an item labeled Besixdouze, which is the name of the asteroid that the main character lives on in the book. 





In a strange twist of fate, the author disappeared in flight one year after publishing this book. 


Out of the Box





Am I the only one who is still curious about what is inside of the heavy box that Ben removed from the air vent in his hotel room before going to get Locke's body for the return flight? Longtime readers are more than familiar with my Lost box obsession; for a refresher, see the paragraph titled 'Trick in a Box.'


Outwit, Outplay, Outrigger





Exactly who was in the other outrigger, shooting at Locke and co.? It sure seems like Juliet hits someone when she shoots back at them. 


Parallels


In Because You Left, Pierre Chang says "God help us all" when he thinks about what could happen if they drilled further beneath the Orchid, and at the end of The Lie, Eloise Hawking says the same thing when Ben asks what happens if he can't convince all of the Oceanic 6 to return. 


In S4, Faraday rendered the gas in The Tempest station inert. In Jughead, asked to do the same with the bomb. 


The Plane! The Plane!





In our first clue that the Oceanic 6 were going to return to the island after all, Charlotte discovers an Ajira Air water bottle on the survivor's beach during a time shift.


And, of course, Juliet the Latin speaking martial arts trained fertility doctor who has dislocated her shoulder four times, is the only one who has heard of Ajira. 


Significant Moments/Firsts





We learn that Dr. Marvin Candle/Edgar Halliwax/Mark Wickman were merely pseudonyms that Dr. Pierre Chang used in various Dharma Orientation films.





We see the DI building the Orchid and discovering the Frozen Donkey Wheel (via x-ray scan) beneath it.





We find out that Faraday was on the island during 1970's Dharma days, via time travel.


We discover that after the island moved, it had shifted in time to the 1970's.


In an unknown era during one of his first time shifts, Locke sees Yemi's yellow plane crash on the island.


Locke gets shot yet again, this time in the leg.


In that same era, we see Ethan Rom almost kill a trespassing Locke.





Charlotte gets a bloody nose, the first of many for her and others, and a side effect of the time skips on the island.





Ghost Ana Lucia makes her first appearance off island, to Hurley. 





It is revealed that Charles Widmore was once stationed on the island, in a military position battling the hostiles. He reports to the ageless Richard Alpert.


We see Eloise Hawking again - this time in Los Angeles with Ben.





Desmond and Penny have a son, and they name him Charlie.





Charles Widmore turns out to have been the one financing Faraday's research. He is also covering the expenses of Theresa Spencer, a woman left in a catatonic state after one of Faraday's time traveling experiments failed.





We find out that it was Locke himself (during a time shift to an earlier era on the island) who instructed Alpert to be present at his birth two years later.


During a time shift back to 2004, Locke sees the light shine through the Swan hatch and Sawyer witnesses Claire giving birth to Aaron.





Clarie's mother Carole does not know about her grandson Aaron. 


Ben's attorney is also Carole's attorney; she sued Oceanic and won a settlement. 





We see young Rousseau and her crew when they first wind up on the island. 


We find out that Jin is indeed still alive! He somehow survived the freighter explosion (perhaps the island was not ready for him to die), and was brought to shore by Rousseau and her team.





Eloise Hawking turns out to be Faraday's mother, also quite proficient in physics and time travel. Both Widmore and Ben know where to find her in Los Angeles.


Swan Song


In Jughead, Faraday asks young soldier Ellie in the 50's if they have access to any lead or concrete, and then instructs her to fill in the crack on Jughead's casing with lead and bury it. I interpreted that to mean that it must then be buried behind or under concrete. Faraday tells her that if she buries it, everything will be fine because in 50 years - the island is still there.  


There is a section in and beneath the Swan hatch that was covered by concrete, concealing the area where 'the incident' occurred (information revealed in S2).  We saw Jughead detonated at the end of S5, causing The Incident. It may have also have caused a reset. 





I believe that Ellie and her people DID bury Jughead beneath the Swan under concrete; that Sayid was spot on in S2 when he told Jack that it resembled Chernobyl.  Later in S5, Faraday himself tells Jack that the Dharma folks are going to accidentally tap into a massive pocket of energy at the Swan site; that they're going to have to cement it in to contain it "like Chernobyl." Perhaps in an alternate reality, we will see that Jughead never detonated. It could be that although Radzinsky insisted on drilling and they did hit the energy pocket, it was contained and sealed off shortly thereafter. 


The Visual and the Visceral





I love that S5 opens very similarly to the previous three season openers, when we have no where or when we are (S2: Desmond in the hatch, S3: Juliet in New Otherton, S4: Jack & Hurley in LA as Oceanic Six after rescue, S5: Dr. Candle in 1970's Dharmaville on the island). I remember watching it the first time, wondering if we were getting a glimpse of Jin and Sun in the future. Little did I know that it was in fact Dr. Chang and his wife, parents of baby Miles in the 70's on the island. [sidenote: shortly before S5, I interviewed actor Francios Chau and had NO idea that he'd feature so prominently last season!]


As a nod to what Faraday reveals about the island's time travel properties later in the same episode (Because You Left), the record skips in Pierre Chang's house. 





Miles emerges from the jungle with a dead boar in The Lie, just as Locke does later this season (5.15, Follow The Leader) and obviously has in the past. 


Hurley


One of my favorite Hurley scenes in the entire series thus far is his tearful confession to his mother about the real details surrounding the crash and island. Jorge Garcia really did a fantastic job in The Lie.





And, of course, who doesn't love Hurley's Hot Pocket Hurl?!


Sawyer





I still think it is bizarre and a tad out of place to show us that something pierced Sawyer's bare foot. That I know of, it was not at all significant to the story or episode. Even though we now know that the 4-toed statue is Tawaret, I can't help but think that Sawyer is somehow tied to it. Perhaps we will come to find out that he is responsible for how it actually gets destroyed (although my money is on an eruption from the island's volcano). 





By the way, that wasn't the first time that we've witnessed something poke through Sawyer's foot. In S3, Sawyer steps on a dart from the Swan that was in the jungle after the implosion... 


Crazy Conspiracy Theory of the Week


When Ben leaves to move Locke's body to a safer location, Jack responded with "Safe? He's dead, isn't he?" And Ben did NOT answer that question. That stirred up a potential thought - what if Ben was working with Mystery Man the entire time...what if BEN is the loophole, and not Locke? 





Ben went to great lengths to ensure that Locke returned to the island in a condition necessary for Mystery Man to become NotLocke. He killed Locke, knowing that he would reanimate upon arrival back on the island (reincarnation van, anyone?). He had the body stored/preserved in a meat locker at a butcher shop (Jill: "everything's moving right on schedule"), and instructs Jill to "keep him safe, because if you don't...everything we're about to do won't matter at all." At first I assumed they were referring to gathering the Oceanic 6 for the Ajira flight back, but now I'm not so sure.  That Jill was expecting Locke's body in the first place is an indication that not only was Locke's 'murder' pre-meditated, Ben informed his crew in advance. 


At the end of S5, in The Incident, it is interesting to think about this possibility when looking at some of NotLocke's dialogue:


Alpert: "Only our leader can request an audience with Jacob, and there can only be one leader on the island at a time."
NotLocke: "I'm beginning to think you just make up these rules as you go along. Ben is coming in with me, and if that's a problem, I'm sure Jacob and I can work it out." 


NotLocke, to Ben: "Things will change, once he's gone. I promise."


Jacob: "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 asked, or you can go - leave us to discuss our issues."
[Insert Ben's 'what about me' speech here.]





IF Ben was MysteryMan's loophole/partner in crime, it would make sense that he insisted that Ben be the one to murder Jacob. Ben pretended it was something he was fearful of and didn't want to do, but he was tired of taking orders from Jacob and wanted revenge just as much as Mystery Man did. 
---
And...scene. Finally! Again, apologies for the delay. I should be back on track now, and plan to dedicate many hours next New Year's weekend to the next big installment of Rewatch analysis. 


As always, I encourage and appreciate any comments, corrections and constructive feedback! I hope that all of you enjoyed the holidays and a few days off to relax. 


Namaste, and Happy New Year!  
-Jo


14 comments:

Ambivalentman said...

Jo --

Thanks for the great re-watch post. I really like your theory pertaining to Ben and "Mystery Man." It would be very "LOST" like to make us think Ben is talking about getting the O6 back to the Island when he's actually talking about something else. Clever.

I've got some theories of my own, too at my blog site. Check 'em out if you've got the time and tell me what you think.

Jeremiah

www.pop-culture-pundit.blogspot.com

Jeff said...

Great post, as usual, Jo!

A thought re: Miles and the boar. I assumed that Miles didn't kill the boar at all, but he used his abilities to find a boar that had recently died of other causes. He even says something to the effect of "it hasn't been dead for long."

A possible correction re: Widmore. Correct me if I'm wrong, but we don't know that Widmore was stationed on the island with the military and opposed to the Hostiles. When we first see him, he's ONE OF the hostiles. He's just wearing an army uniform (presumably taken from the US Army troops who brought Jughead-- they also appropriated the US Army's guns and tents, apparently). I think the uniform has a generic American name on it...

elevatordance said...

you wrote "what if Ben is the loophole?". I was thinking sort of about this too. Because Ben "always has a plan". I considered whether Ben was in "cahoots" with Man in black or Jacob against the other. I thought maybe Ben wanted to kill Jacob so he was pretending not to know what Locke/MIB was doing but his reaction when Locke/MIB tells him that they are going to see Jacob so Locke can kill him, his reaction seems totally genuine. Could Ben just be a great actor? perhaps. But Ben seems surprised and shocked there. Also, does MIB/Locke really not know that Jacob lives in the statue, or he is just faking it for Alpert to not know it is MIB? I also believe that Jacob ensured that Ben would stab him with his some what uncaring "what about you?" response. Does Jacob want to be killed? Is that what he means by "it only ends once". I've seen Emerson interviewed and says "ben uses the knife on Jacob" doesn't say "kills" so maybe we should not assume that. Maybe it is because it is only 36 days away (sooner for you!!) but I am suddenly reenergized to analyze LOST again! Thanks for your inspiration!

Dustin Winebrenner said...

Regarding Ben being MIB's loophole: I think the entire time loop is the loophole, and Locke and Ben were the centerpieces of that scheme. However, if Ben was knowingly working with MIB/Flocke against Jacob, there'd be no reason he'd pretend not to know what's happening in front of Flocke when they are alone. Also, there'd be no reason MIB used ghost Alex to convince Ben to follow Flocke.

I agree something is fishy with Ben and the meat counter woman. What are they working toward? Ben drops several hints that he thinks Locke may come back to life, but why would he suspect this at all?

But I think Ben has been completely humanized and sympathized now. Going forward I think we can consider him one of the Losties - a pawn who must rise up against the chess player MIB.

Amanda said...

Interesting theory on Ben being the loophole. He does always have a plan...

There have been other incidents with Sawyer and his feet (I'm thinking specifically of The Brig, where Sawyer is traipsing through the jungle barefoot. Nothing impales him, but he is in a lot of pain). I would love to know "foot" symbolism and what that could mean for Mr. Ford.

Also, my Dharma button arrived today! It's already proudly displayed on my purse :) Thank you!

MonkeyFace said...

Jo...your crazy conspiracy theory doesn't seem too crazy to me. i just watched these episodes this past weekend and I thought the exact same thing! again, locke being completely manipulated and used.

amanda, yes! sawyer always seems to have foot issues...always barefoot (or shirtless!) and seemingly, each season, stepping on something. jo could be on to something w/ the 4 toed comparison...hmm.

thanks for continuing the re-watch, jo! we're coming around the stretch now! wish I could join you in hawaii!

briguyx said...

Glad you could find some time over the holidays to continue the Rewatch, Jo!

Count me on the side that believes Ben was manipulated by MIB and the only reason he brought Locke's dead body back to the island was as one more prop to convince Jack and Co. to come along under the idea that they all had to come back.

One crazy idea reading this entry gave me was what if like MIB, there's another player on Jacob's side who's taken someone else's body. Dumb I know, but I'm always looking for someone who's left the gameboard as the reason for why there are no babies born on the island. Of course, that answer is something probably as simple as exposure to a combo of island and Jughead radiation...

aletheaanne said...

Re: the nose bleeds and the timing. Charlotte was on the island until she seemed about what? Six years old? So she got the bloody nose first.

Miles was next. But we see Miles and Mrs. Chang board the sub to leave when he was only 3 months old. Juliet had been on the island three years. Why did Miles get a nosebleed before she did?

Thanks for keeping up with the rewatch! It's been fun.

Ed said...

I had a lot of unanswered questions on these first four episodes...

In "Because You Left", does anybody else wonder why they didn't want to kill Sayid, only tranq him? If this was a war with Charles' people, I'd figure they'd be out for blood. Did Richard and his people also skip around in time? It doesn't seem like they did, and why not? And just when/where does that compass originate from? Does it just randomly show up at the end of the season when Fake Locke gives it to Richard to give it to Locke?

In "The Lie", who the hell are Jill, Gabriel, and Jeffrey? And how are they working for Ben? And why is Elloise helping Ben instead of Charles, her husband?

In "Jughead", who ordered Richard to kill the army men of the 1950s? It couldn't have been Charles, he wasn't old enough then. Was Richard in charge back then? If not him, then who? How did Charles and Ellie come to the island? They obviously didn't come with the Army. Just how long have they been on the island.

Inquiring minds want to know!

loophole815 said...

Jo,

Great post. Your Ben theory makes sense not only based on the evidence you've presented, but also the fact Iliana's people state that a "war" is coming. Ben would likely choose MIB's side based on what's happened to him in recent Island history.

It would make sense that Ben would feel betrayed and angry at Jacob or the Island for allowing Ben to get cancer and his daughter to be murdered. I believe Ben and Locke are pawns in Esau's(MIB) game against Jacob. I also believe the MIB to be the Smoke Monster based on the Egyptian drawing in the Temple when Ben is judged. I have a long theory on this I won't get into here.

Just wanted to say great post and Happy New Year!

Boyhowdy said...

Jo,
Just read all 24 rewatch entries...WOW! Your analysis and insight completely blows me away - I feel as though I've let so much information slip by me even after watching the first 4 seasons multiple times (planning to bone up on S5 before 2.2.10). Muchos mahalos for the time and effort spent on your amazing blog.

Currently residing in Pearl City, HI, I'll definitely make every effort to attend the Premiere on the Beach.

Hau'oli makahiki hou!

Boyhowdy said...

Oh, one other thing...for those who wish to rewatch S5 and didn't buy the DVD box set, beginning today, all episodes are now available on hulu (previously, S1 thru S4 & only the last 7 eps of S5 were posted).

Cheers!

Esther said...

I think Ben didnt know that Locke was going to come back to life, he probably wanted him dead so he could become the leader again, because when Alex talked to him she (smokey) said clearly that she knew he was thinking about killing Locke again.

I am confident that Ben is not thinking of any great reason when it comes to Locke, he just wants him out of the way because he is jealous of him.

L. A. said...

Hi! Just come across the blog and liking the re-watch, will join you from here until the end of S6!

Just throwing in my 0.12p (that's 2 cents at current conversation rates for us Brits - geeky, yes.)

I know your blog is on the theory/ideas etc., and not necessarily the quality, but did anyone else feel 5:1 and 5:2 were quite poor? I was shocked, considering they're Darlton penned. Too much farce!

Having said that, the scene with Alpert helping Locke with the bullet in his leg was amazing - these two actors are great.

Ed, as far as I know the writers wanted the compass to represent being be stuck in a sort of "Mobius Loop", as the exchange between Locke and Alpert has no end. You can't say who had it first. I think they discuss it on the ABC podcast.

As for the Fake Locke outcome, I have no idea who initiated the loophole. Ben always has plans but sometimes I think he gets lucky, so I don't know if I'm convinced yet. My only belief really is that Locke-as-we-know-him is dead: which is unforgivable!