LOST Theories - DarkUFO

“The Hatch” (The Swan)

Way back in Season 2, when getting our first glimpse inside The Swan (a.k.a. “The Hatch”), we all simultaneously realized that we were in for far more than we could’ve imagined. This mysterious island show just jumped to a new stratosphere with the reveal that there is (or from the look of things was) a scientific organization trying to study and understand the properties of the island, and create a Utopian society on this tropical paradise. However, nothing is ever what it seems on LOST, and as the events surrounding the creation and destruction of The Swan are central to the twists and turns that have brought us to the beach to witness the murder of Jacob, they deserve some further examination. In this installment we take a look back at some of the mysteries that were uncovered when John Locke blew The Swan door opened and seemingly forgotten since Desmond Hume turned the fail safe key and imploded the entire station.

I can clearly recall being at work and going to lunch the day after the Season 2 finale “Live Together, Die Alone” aired, and running into a buddy of mine from the IT department. We didn’t even say, “Hi,” but instead he just looked at me and said, “So there was a nuke in the middle of the hatch, huh?” To this I replied, “What makes you say that?” He answered, “The sky turned purple.” Apparently I missed that day in science class where they explained nuclear explosions cause a purple light in the sky, but even so at that point in our knowledge of LOST history, there was no reason at all to think that there was a nuke tied to the button that had to be pressed every 108 minutes. The only hint was Sayid’s comment likening the poured cement they could see in certain sections of the living space of The Swan as well as beneath the station to the world-famous Chernobyl incident in Russia in the 1980s. (Quick note: Wouldn’t it be an insane twist that t! he Chernobyl incident is a result of “The Incident” in 1977? Sort of an off-island consequence to on-island activity.)

“The Hatch” (The Swan) was the literal tip of the iceberg as far as the myriad of mysteries lurking (or in this case, literally buried) on the island. First thing worth noting…it called to Locke.

Season 1, Episode 11 “All The Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues”

BOONE: Are we lost?
LOCKE: No, Boone, we're not lost.
BOONE: Sorry, it's just it don't see how you can still be
following this trail. I think we should go back, man.
LOCKE: Don't you feel it?
BOONE: Feel what?
BOONE: Alright, John. I'm going to follow the strips back.
LOCKE: Suit yourself. Boone? You need this more than I do.
[Tosses flashlight and it hits the hatch]
BOONE: What is that?
LOCKE: Steel.
BOONE: Could that be part of the plane? Part of the wreckage?
What is that?
LOCKE: That's what we're going to find out.

Think Superman, where the green crystal from Krypton called to Kal-El, a.k.a. Clark Kent, so that he would find it and eventually build his Fortress of Solitude. While searching for the abducted Claire and Charlie, Locke is pulled off the trail and towards the real beginning of the end…”The Hatch” (The Swan).

Following some of the assumptions and speculations made in the previous posts in this series, let’s allow for the possibility that Locke’s Season 1 Episode 4: “Walk About” encounter with (what we assume to be) The Smoke Monster unlocked (always gets a laugh) some of Locke’s past-iteration knowledge. Could what we’re seeing beginning in this scene and carrying through the entire “Hatch-Story-Arc” of the first season be Locke playing a crafty rouse, faking that he doesn’t know what “The Hatch” is? His quest to get inside seems at various times to be a frustrated initial struggle, and at others an expected Rubik’s cube that he knows he must and will eventually solve.

Some examples:
Season 1, Episode 13 “Hearts And Minds”

BOONE: So not to be too difficult, but we've been coming here
for 2 days just staring at this thing. I'm not really
sure what we're supposed to be doing.
LOCKE: Ludovico Buonarrati... Michelangelo's father. He was a
wealthy man. He had no understanding of the divinity in
his son so he beat him. No child of his was going to use
his hands for a living. So Michelangelo learned not to
use his hands. Years later a visiting prince came into
Michelangelo's studio and found the master staring at a
single 18-foot block of marble. Then he knew that the
rumors were true that Michelangelo had come in everyday
for the last 4 four months, stared at the marble, and
gone home for his supper. So the prince asked the
obvious, what are you doing? And Michelangelo turned
around and looked at him, and whispered, ‘sto lavorando,’
I'm working. 3 years later that block of marble was the
statue of David.
BOONE: We're not going to stare at this for 4 months, are we?
How are we going to open it?
LOCKE: Well, that's what we have to figure out. That's why we're
sitting here. I mean how do you open a hatch that has no
handle, no latch, no discernible way of opening it?

Locke’s speech about Michelangelo hearkens back to his first conversation with Jack. He is the wise mentor, trying to teach Boone clarity and focus. Taking into account knowledge from Seasons 4 and 5, some of the details of the story are interesting. Obviously 4 is one of the numbers in the Valenzetti Equation. Michelangelo took 4 months to acquire his vision of the statue of David and the 108 days the Oceanic 6 spent on the island before leaving is just shy of 4 months. Michelangelo took 3 years to complete the statue of David, and it took 3 years for the Oceanic 6 to return to the island. Could this be foreshadowing, a slight wink to Locke’s knowledge of the ordeal that awaits once he opens “The Hatch” (The Swan) and begins his mission to kill Jacob in the Season 5 finale “The Incident”?

Simultaneously, Locke seems just as puzzled as Boone regarding how they are going to eventually open "The Hatch" (The Swan). Are there significant gaps in his unlocked past-iteration knowledge? Or does he need to maintain a facade of ignorance as part of his 4 months of staring at the 18-foot Marble Block that is his game plan for the "Loophole"?
Season 1, Episode 19: “Deus Ex Machina”

LOCKE: You're late.
BOONE: Late for what?
LOCKE: Late for work.
BOONE: I think I'm done working, John.
LOCKE: I'm sorry, what?
BOONE: This is useless. You can't open that thing up. You say
you can, but you can't.
LOCKE: No, don't tell me what I can't do.
BOONE: Don't you get it? It's a dead end. You're not getting in.
LOCKE: That's impossible. We didn't find this by accident. We're
supposed to...
BOONE: Oh, we're supposed to. We're supposed to find this,
right? We're supposed to open it, right? Then tell me
something, John, if we're supposed to open it, then why
the hell haven't we opened it yet?
LOCKE: The island will send us a sign.
BOONE: The island will give us a sign.
LOCKE: All that's happening now is our faith is being tested...
our commitment. But we will open it. The island will show
us how.
BOONE: What kind of kind of sign will the island send us? Huh,
[Shot of an airplane that looks like it’s going to crash]
LOCKE: Did you see that? Boone?
[Locke sees a bloody Boone and his mother pointing]
BOONE: Theresa falls up the stairs. Theresa falls down the
stairs. Theresa falls up the stairs. Theresa falls down
the stairs. Theresa falls up the stairs.
[Shot of Locke in a wheelchair and then falling out of it]
LOCKE: No, no, no, please.
BOONE: Theresa falls down the stairs. Theresa falls up the
stairs. Theresa falls down the stairs.
LOCKE: Don't take it back.
[Shot of Locke waking up from a dream]

Okay, now even though this is a dream, the episode is called “Deus Ex Machina”, literally translated from Latin as “God of the Machine”. This is a widely used term in theater and fiction in reference to a plot-device developed in ancient Greek theater, where divine intervention helps hero characters overcome an otherwise impassible obstacle or challenge. So is this dream the actual “Deus Ex Machina” of the episode? Often the “Machina” being referred to was a literal crane or machine used in Greek theater to lower the God-character being portrayed onto the stage. Could this mean that the Beech Craft is the literal “God Machine” of the episode? The circumstances of the dream could be considered to be a message from whatever divine presence is at work on the island, pointing Locke in the right direction. On the other hand, the dream itself could be the result of Locke’s communion with the island, and by association, the divine presence on the island,! and could be Locke’s past-iteration knowledge infused mind finding the path to the next step in his journey. Better yet, could Locke be the “Deus Ex Machina”, indicated by the light that comes on at the end of the episode when Locke is wailing in agony and pounding his fists on “The Hatch” (The Swan) door?

Locke’s obsession with opening “The Hatch” (The Swan) is driven, almost like it was an assignment. (I also like the obvious but still clever thematic of a character named Locke trying to open a door with no handle, let alone a keyhole.) Since we’re looking at this in re-watch mode, knowing that Desmond is inside, and that Locke’s pounding and crying are what caught Desmond’s attention and stopped him from killing himself and restored his hope, could saving Des be the intended result of the “God From The Machine” intervention?

Desmond is almost unanimously throughout Lost fandom agreed to be special and significant to the mythology of the show (also Daniel Faraday said he was uniquely and miraculously special, someone who seems to have much more inside knowledge than we do). Could it be that Desmond wasn’t the person inside “The Hatch” (The Swan) last time around? Could it have been Radzinsky in the last iteration, or someone who actually succeeded in killing themselves and not Desmond? And could that successful suicide be responsible for the 815 crash in the last iteration, which led to different circumstances that did not allow for the “Loophole” The Nemesis and Locke are responsible for this time around?

Regardless of what eventually turns out to be the case, Desmond’s significance cannot be ignored here. There is another character that is pulled into this web of John Locke, Richard Alpert, The Nemesis, and The Smoke Monster, and his name is Benjamin Linus. But we don’t meet Ben until Season 2, and so we will wait to discuss him until we reach “The Hatch” (The Swan) as we know it in the second season. For now, we’re not done with Season 1…

More to come, folks. Let mortal komment begin!

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