LOST Theories - DarkUFO

[B]DEAR SEASON 6 HATERS (And All You Other LOST Fans, Too),[/B]

Simple truth is this: The 6th Season of LOST is brilliant. I mean BRILLIANT brilliant. Like mythical. The stuff of legends. It sets a new standard for the craft of visual storytelling that probably won’t be equaled in my lifetime.

If you consider yourself a true LOST fan, and you are unhappy or unsatisfied with Season 6, I got good news for you. Season 6 is directly and explicitly explaining the BIGGEST MYSTERIES on LOST with every single episode. You just have to peel back the glossy stick’em cover and press all the buttons first. And you do that by putting down your assumptions and asking yourself: What am I not seeing, and why am I not seeing it?

In order to do that, you need to know what the big mysteries ACTUALLY ARE. Ask the right questions, and you’ll find the answers--easily and without doubting yourself or the show. But you have to look at the EVIDENCE. Lucky for you, I am all about the evidence! Go team!

[B]QUESTION: What are the “flash-sideways?”

WHAT YOU'RE MISSING: How the flashbacks fit in the “given timeline” of our losties, and how they relate to what’s going on on the island.[/B]

EPISODE THAT'S GONNA GIVE US THE ANSWER: "Lighthouse" - In conjunction with "White Rabbit" (1.05) and "Something Nice Back Home" (4.10)

EASY CHEEZY, baby! You ready?


[All screencaps found at LOSTMedia]


Let’s talk about JACK. Specifically, lets talk about Jack’s Jacob-sponsored journey from the temple to the lighthouse (with Hurley as his “guide”), his “flashsideways” experience (where xJack reconciles with his grumpy, pre-teen, musical genius son, David), and his little dynamite experiment with Richard at the Black Rock. But before we do all that, let's examine LOST Episode 6.05 - “Lighthouse."

[B]Basic Premise of "Lighthouse" -- Jack has a mirror problem.

A mirror enables self-identity. Think about it. You identify yourself by recognizing your image, which you can ONLY learn to recognize if you can SEE and study your ACCURATE reflection. Without a photograph or video with your verified image recorded on it, the only way you can see/study your OWN FACE (your own identity) is by using a MIRROR. It’s the only way you can “know thyself” (or how you might appear to others).

If we are unable to see things about ourselves in the mirror (one that is not distorted), it is a perceptional error. Often, we see what we want to see.

After Jack moves the lighthouse mirror to "23-Shephard," he and Hurley see the image of a house with Hurley's reflections (Jack's reflection is missing). When Jack recognizes the house, his first reflex response is to name the house in relationship to himself. He identifies the house (from his point of view or POV).

Problem: Jack verbally identifies the house in THREE different ways from THREE mutually exclusive POV's.

[*]It’s my house.
[*]The house I grew up in.
[*]I haven’t lived in that house since I was a kid.
Hm. If this is the house I grew up in, then it is not my house. It WAS my house, but now that I am an adult, it’s not my house anymore. As far as I’m aware, we’ve never seen Jack’s parents’ house exterior before this episode. However, we can clearly recognize the image of Jack’s parents’ house from this episode in the mirrors. If that’s true, then “It’s my house” wouldn’t refer to Jack. That’s not Jack’s house; that’s his parents’ house. [Here’s something interesting to note: Both David and Jack refer to the house as Grandma’s/your grandmother’s house. Margo’s house. Margo’s the reason Jack went to Australia after his dad in the first place. Hm.]

And as far as WE know, this IS the house that Jack grew up in. We recognize Christian’s study from when Jack was a kid and being told, “You don’t have what it takes” by Christian (“White Rabbit”). Jack is in this same study with his mom when she guilts him into going to Australia to look for his dad ("White Rabbit") and again in "Lighthouse" when they look for and find Christian’s will.

Thing is, number 3 makes no sense to me. If I haven’t lived in the house since I was a kid, then I didn’t grow up there. If I haven’t lived in the house since I was a kid, then it’s not my house. Who’s perspective does this represent? It can’t be Christian’s or Margo’s or Jack’s. There’s no evidence it’s David’s. Who lived in this house as a kid, left as a kid and never lived there again? (I have a COMPLETELY wild guess, but I'll save it for later.)

The most important lines in this scene come right after BUT WE HAVE TO WATCH OUR ASSUMPTIONS.

[*]Jack: He’s been watching. The whole time--all of us—he’s been watching us. Hurley—where’s Jacob.
[*]Hurley: I dunno.
[*]Jack: I wanna know why he was watching me. So you’re gonna ask him right now. . .Why is my name written down on this thing?! What does he want from me?!
In the above exchange between Jack and Hurley:

[*]We ASSUME the “He” that’s been doing the watching is Jacob, but Jack and Hurley never name “him.”
[*]We ASSUME the “us” “He’s” been watching is all of our losties whose names are written down, or at least the losties represented by the reflections: Sun’s father’s house and Sawyer’s parents’ funeral church. However, Jack could also be speaking in terms of the three different POV’s on the house. Three different identities or realities.
[*]We ASSUME “the whole time” means a lifetime or since they were kids. It’s just as likely that this means “since we’ve been to the island.”
[*]We ASSUME “why he was watching me” means “why he has been watching me.” However, these are two totally different verb tenses. “He was watching me” implies he watched me over a period of time in the past. He’s not watching me anymore.
[*]We ASSUME "what does he want from me" is a cry of frustration on Jack's part, but it is also a signifier that Jack realizes Jacob wants something from him. This lighthouse experience is a message: There's something I need you (Jack specifically) to do.

[I]Interesting note: Those two other reflected locations? They are the locations where Jacob touched Sun & Jin and Sawyer. We’ve got no evidence that Jacob’s ever been to Margo’s house.[/I]

I'm fairly confident that we're talking 3 different perspectives or identities here ("He was watching us" meaning Jack and the other two POV's), but, regardless of how the ambiguity (word)plays out, one thing's for sure. In the end Jack refers only to himself. He wants to know why “he was watching ME.” That’s the most significant thing. Instead of US, Jack says ME.

This choice is hammered home when Jack has his little dynamite experiment with Richard on board The Black Rock (“Dr. Linus”).

[*]Richard: You’re gonna die.
[*]Jack: (smiles) Actually, I don’t think either one of us is going to die.
[*]Richard: What makes you think that?
[*]Jack: I just came from the lighthouse, where my name was etched in wood on a dial that turned a mirror, and somehow reflected the image of the house that I grew up in.
The fuse burns into the homestretch.

[*]Jack: Jacob’s lighthouse. He got Hurley to bring me out there because he wanted me to see what was reflected in that mirror. For some reason he wanted me to know that he had been watching me ever since I was a kid.

[Yeah, yeah. I know. Jack says that Jacob "had been watching" him since he was a kid, but Jack also says his name was “etched in wood on a dial” when all the names are written in marker (“Shephard” is freshly written, btw) and that the dial turned a mirror when he and Hurley did the actual turning by pulling the chain (Get it? HAHAHAHAHAHA!). The dial only indicated where the mirror was pointed once it was turned. Ya’ll think what you want, but I’m sticking with" better safe than wrong" and holding “Jacob had been watching me since I was a kid” as subjective, suspicious information. Also, note the verb tense here, too. "He had been watching" means he's not watching me anymore.]

The most important thing that Jack says here is that Jacob had Hurley take him to a mirror that somehow reflected the HOUSE I GREW UP IN. Jack is done staring out at the ocean and has made a CHOICE. Where there were three simultaneous, mutually exclusive POV's to identify the house, now there is only one (because, my geeky chic-y pals, in the end, there can be only ONE! HA!).

The POV or identity or whatever you want to call it has been settled: This is the house Jack grew up in. Jack has chosen to be JACK.


You have questions? Of course you do! (You are smart that way!) Lemme see if I can quickly pre-answer a few of them.

Q: Why would Jack have 3 identities or 3 POV's?

[INDENT]Good question. I have no idea. My very best guess is that JACK has something important to do on the island, and if Jack isn't Jack or if he is in flux, he can't do the job. Remember, there's been a glitch. Something went wrong with the island, and there's a struggle between who wants to fix the glitch and who doesn't. Our losties are caught in the middle (and part of the plan - but we don't know which lostie is part of whose plan). Messing with Jack's head would be a way to manipulate him. I think both "sides" of the struggle have been doing just that.[/INDENT]

Q: How would Jack have 3 identities or 3 POV's?

[INDENT]Pretty much everybody but Hurley and Kate have two identities if you think about it: Sawyer/James Ford, Goth Claire/Madonna Claire, Mr. Eko Gangsta/Mr. Eko Priest, the list goes on and on. I had Jack pegged with Christian POV baggage, but the 3rd POV was a surprise to me. I think this might be because Jack is DIFFERENT than all of our other losties. He "walks among them but is not one of them."[/INDENT]

Q: How can anyone have three POV's or identities at the same time? That's impossible!

[INDENT]Anything's possible on an island where a smoke monster can eat you. But you are right. We humans are only designed to work from one POV at a time, even if we have more than one in our heads. The only way 3 POV's could be hanging together in Jack would be if his identity is in "flux." IF HE IS "BROKEN." (See it?) Even then, the only way a flux ID would work without making him a nutbag on the island, would be if his identity was in flux on a SUBCONSCIOUS level - a level he is not consciously aware of BUT that influences everything about who he is, what he thinks and what he does.[/INDENT]

Q: Aren't you just reading too much into the words they say? How do you know it's not a mistake on the writers' part?

[INDENT]Wordplay is everything on LOST. Learn it. Live it. Love it. (Trust me.) If you can count a ridiculously high number of little "mistakes" on a show like LOST (and no one gets fired), then those "mistakes" are deliberate. A deliberate little mistake is not a mistake. It's a little clue. Gather all the little clues together -- you get big clues. Fit all the big clues together -- you get answers. But ONLY if you are asking the right questions from the get-go.

BTW, if you truly believe that the writers, editors, actors etc. are "just making mistakes," and there are obviously so many of them, then why are you still watching this show? By definition a show that makes constant, sloppy or lazy mistakes would be a show that sucks. I'm just sayin.'[/INDENT]

Q: Okay, I buy the possibility of three identities (maybe), but how do you know Jack has to choose one of them to go forward in the story? How do you know that's what he was supposed to do at the lighthouse?

[INDENT]Because it isn't until Jack makes that choice at the lighthouse that he "understands" how important he is. Watch your wordplay: Jack must understand how important JACK is, see? This choice (and the process itself) brings Jack on point in a way he's never been before (He's believed in his destiny before now, but he wasn't actively looking for what he was supposed to do. He was waiting for it to come to him: "The island wants to fix itself" - "Whatever Happened, Happened"). In "Dr. Linus," Jack tells Richard (over the sparkling stick of dynamite) that he has no idea why Jacob wanted him to see the house he grew up in in the mirror (and/or was "watching him since he was a kid").[/INDENT]

[*]Jack: But I’m willing to bet you that if Jacob went to that trouble, he brought me to this island for a reason. And it’s not to blow up sitting here with you right now.
[*]Richard: What if you're wrong?
[*]Jack: I'm not.
[INDENT]Only after his trip to the lighthouse, only after he makes his choice is he able to believe that he "has work to do" (and it's frickin' important work and he can't "go" until it's done and he'd better get his butt in gear, thank you very much!). Sitting there while that fuse burns down and believing it's not going to go off is Jack's leap of faith. He has officially swallowed Jacob's Koolaid (but hopefully in a good way cuz the BAD way would be the way BEN swallowed the island's Koolaid, a choice that cost him his daughter's life in the most horrible way. A choice he regrets/recants later on in this very episode).
These are all VERY good questions (I'm so proud of you)! However, you're not asking the most important questions.

Important Q: It seems pretty darn important that Jack make the right choice. And Jacob's going through a lot of trouble for basically a 3:1 shot Jack will get it right. Since it looks like all three POV's have equal pull on Jack, and Jacob admits that he can't just "hand him a guitar case." Does Jacob help Jack any other way?


Important Q: Uh, so how does Jacob help? What throws a leg over for JACK to win the Lighthouse Reflection Rejection Showdown?

[INDENT]xJack's interaction with David.

When we first meet Jack in the pilot, this troubled hero, angstman, there’s-no-such-thing-as-miracles/destiny spinal surgeon with a serious (and well earned) Paternal Conflict Syndrome, has big time baggage. His baggage is named Christian.

Christian, to on-island Jack, is only a memory (or an apparition/illusion), but it is a memory that causes Jack pain, doubt, frustration, guilt – everything anti-depressants were invented for. For Jack, Christian is a Bummer with a capital B. And when Jack has his most serious moments of emotional crisis, his memories of Christian are always a factor in the (often poor) choices he makes on the island.

HOWEVER, it is important to note that Christian did NOT BECOME Jack’s baggage until episode 1.05 - “White Rabbit.” That’s the episode where Jack remembers his father (drink in hand) telling him (as a kid) that “You just don’t have what it takes.” Then Jack fails to save the drowning girl, sees his father (dressed for the coffin), chases him into the jungle, remembers looking for him in Australia, nearly falls off a cliff and is saved by Locke who “knew where he’s going.” [This primal fear moment is duplicated for Sawyer in “The Substitute” and Kate in “Sundown.”]

Locke names who/what Jack is chasing as the “White Rabbit.” Jack admits “The guy I’m chasing is there, but he’s not there.” Locke gives him the “this place is special” speech and leaves him to it. Jack remembers identifying his father’s body, finds the caves, checks out the waterfall, finds the coffin, opens it and smashes it with the nearest BASEBALL BAT when it’s empty (“I need this to be done. I need this to be over”). The end of this episode is where Jack gives the “Live Together, Die Alone” speech [to stick up for Boone, who later on we learn has Shannon's inhaler and a copy of Watership Down in his bags] and tells Kate that he was in Australia because his father died. [This is the last time Jack mentions his dad on the island until he tells Sawyer the Red Sox story.]

I don’t want to drag this Christian thing out too much in this post, so I’ll refer you to my Jacob/Jack/Christian theory post located HERE if you are interested in more background info, but basically let’s think of Christian as Jack’s Ghost of Demoralizations Past. Jack's baggage (Christian) makes him UNABLE to get his important job done. [Note how Jack's "baggage" is LOST in LA_X.]

From “White Rabbit” to “Lighthouse," for as long as Christian has a hold on him, Jack struggles with fear of failure, self-doubt and a self-centered nihilism. He rejects the meaning of events as they transpire around and happen to him. “I don’t believe in destiny.” “There’s no such thing as miracles.” His self-doubt is so pervasive, the thought of committing himself to a course of action sends him into an emotional tailspin ("Do NOT go back to the island!" to "We've got to go BACK!").

However, AFTER his journey to the “Lighthouse,” Jack is calmly confident that he’s not wrong: He was brought to the island for a reason -- an important reason. He’s so sure of this, he bets his life on it. He takes his leap of faith, and it doesn’t shred him down to Junkie Jack. Not this time.

The fuse is nearly gone. Jack closes his eyes and waits. Richard trembles as he watches the fuse burn down and down. It sputters out with ½ inch to spare. Jack opens his eyes and looks down. He chuckles. He smiles at Richard.

[*]Jack: You wanna try another stick?
[*]Richard: Alright Jack. You seem to have all the answers, so now what?
[*]Jack: (thinks) We go back to where we started.
Now Jack is ready to get to work.

[BACK TO WHERE WE STARTED, reset peeps, BACK to where we STARTED! This is the reset/do over you've been waiting for: THIS IS IT! The CHARACTERS are reseting emotionally/memorywise back to where they were BEFORE and going BACK to where they started! Aren't you excited?!]
Our first glimpse of Jack in "Lighthouse" is a wavering reflection of his face as he stares into the "reflecting pool" (in front of the temple gate).

Think back to our discussion of how mirrors enable self-identity. This reflection doesn’t show us a distorted or different view of Jack. His reflection in the water is fluid, constantly morphing, changing – it’s not fixed. (Get it? There’s a Shakespeare sonnet reference in here somewhere. Hm. I’ll have to dig around for it.)

Visually, we have just been told that Jack's POV/identity status is: "In Flux."

Jack looks up from his reflection in the water. We cut to POV from across the water as Jack stares at us from the OTHER SIDE. This shot is really, really important later, so take a second look at it. Jack “looks” across the water. We watch back. He doesn’t “see” anything. There is no revelation. He keeps staring until Dogen interrupts him.

The visual clues tell us Jack’s POV/identity is in flux, but it’s not the kind of flux or reality disturbance that makes you all crackpot (like Sayid and Claire). I think that his being at the temple and under Dogen’s/Jacob's/Hurley's guidance/watch could be preventing him from flipping out. But I think the main reason his island behavior is normal is because this fluid and UN-fixed identity (as represented in his reflection) is subliminal. It takes place behind his conscious mind. [I think this is why Jacob can’t just tell Jack what to do. This is why Jack has to figure it out on his own.]

This is the state of Jack pre-journey – subliminal state of identity flux.

If we list Jack-related events happening on island in chronological order, Jack’s journey, orchestrated by Jacob and guided by Hurley, works like this:

1. Jacob sets the journey up with Hurley.
2. Hurley tells Jack, “Jacob said to tell you, ‘You have what it takes.’”

[INDENT]This is an inference of Christian. Christian’s actual words were: “You don’t have what it takes.” Jacob, who we know told Hurley exactly what to say, has altered them. Note Jack’s emotional reaction when he hears words so close to the ones Christian used to snap his emotional stability in two. Jack is also motivated by them (clearly Jacob was expecting this). No more sittin’ around the temple rec area munching mangos for Jack!
3. Jack agrees to go with Hurley.
4. Jack connects and parts ways with Kate.

[INDENT]This will make more sense later, but just remember this: Hurley tells Jack the journey is just supposed to be the two of them. Jack invites Kate anyway. She turns him down to go after Claire (she’s go her own identity problems to deal with!). She wishes him luck: “I hope you find what you’re looking for.”
5. Jack tells Hurley there’s nothing between him and Kate and that he’d make a terrible dad.
6. Jack finds SHANNON'S inhaler – the caves appear before them.

[INDENT]Let’s pause here for a moment. Remember, at this point, Jack hasn’t spoken of Christian since “316,” and he’s NEVER told anyone about seeing Christian on the island. Watch what happens next.
7. Jack remembers/recounts the moment he finds the caves and the empty coffin. He explains why he smashed it to bits.

[INDENT]Jack stands center cave, holding the inhaler with both hands. Christian’s smashed coffin, right were he left it AFTER HE SMASHED IT. However, “Adam” and “Eve” are not where he left them. They are interred together, when originally they were interred separately. AND I don't see OR hear a waterfall ANYWHERE, do you?
[*]Hurley: What’s that?
[*]Jack: I found these caves chasing the ghost of my dead father. He led me here. That was his coffin after I smashed it to pieces.
[*]Hurley: Why’d you do that?
[*]Jack: Because he wasn’t in it.

[INDENT]All ya’ll lookin’ for a reset? Here ya go. This moment “resets” Jack’s emotional progress all the way back to Episode 1.x (“White Rabbit”). At this point in his journey, he remembers that “the ghost of my dead father. He led me here.” Watch your wordplay: He led me to the caves or to the island or to this fork in the road that threw me off track.
8. Jack tells Hurley he came back to the island because “I was broken. And I was stupid enough to believe this place could fix me.”

Remember, the reason Jack has given prior (to Juliet) was: “because I was supposed to.” These reasons are not mutually exclusive. “Because I was supposed to be fixed” works if he can’t do the job he’s meant to do until he’s no longer broken. Cross “remember my emotional problem” off of Jack’s Journey to Reflection Rejection checklist:

[*]Jack: How much farther, Hurley?
[*]Hurley: Not far. Not far at all.

9. They find the lighthouse, (which Hurley says they haven’t found before this moment because they weren’t looking for it).
10. Jack kicks in the door – the door that Hurley can’t open!!
11. Jack sees "23-Shephard" on the dial and Margo's house reflected in the lighthouse mirrors.
12. He identifies the house from 3 mutually exclusive POV's (It's my house -- The house I grew up in -- I haven't lived there since I was a kid).
13. Jack switches from 3 POV's to ONE POV (Jack's - The house I grew up in).
14. Jack wants to know what Jacob wants from him and doesn't get an answer.
15. Jack smashes the mirrors.
16. Jack stares out at the ocean now ready (as Jacob notes) to realize how important he is, that he's got something to do and that he's got to figure out what it is on his own.

Let’s go over cause/effect -- Things that have to happen in sequence (like dominos) for Jack (w/Hurley as his guide) to make it from temple to the lighthouse – and then be READY for his Reflection Rejection Showdown before he kicks down the door. But this time, just to double-check events with Jack's emotional progression, let's go over these backwards. This is a very useful screenplay/stage play re-writing trick to target problems or test narrative structure (for a story line/plot - to make sure it's effective). Looking at events in order but backwards makes sure that every event leads to the next, keeping the action moving and the story lines on target to nail the pre-determined ending. The ideal is that events are dependent. Any event can't happen unless the event before it has already happened. Here are Jack-related events on island listed in reverse chronological order.

[*]ck can't stare out at the ocean ready (as Jacob notes) to realize how important he is, that he's got something to do and that he's got to figure out what it is on his own until he shatters the mirrors.
[*]Jack can't shatter the mirrors until he asks what Jacob wants from him and doesn't get an answer.
[*]Jack can't ask what Jacob wants from him until he switches from 3 POV's to 1 POV (Jack's).
[*]Jack can't switch from 3 POV's to ONE POV (Jack's) until he identifies the house from 3 POV's.
[*]Jack can't identify the house from 3 different POV's until he sees "23-Shephard" on the dial and Margo's house reflected in the lighthouse mirrors.
[*]Jack can't see "23-Shephard" on the dial and Margo's house reflected in the lighthouse mirrors until he kicks in the door.
[*]Jack can’t kick in the lighthouse door until they find the lighthouse.
[*]They can’t find the lighthouse until Jack admits that he’s broken.
[*]Jack can’t admit that he’s broken until he remembers that the ghost of his dead father “led him here” and that he smashed the empty coffin because “he wasn’t in it.”
[*]Jack can’t admit he’s broken (et al.) until they visit the caves.
[*]They can’t visit the caves until Jack finds SHANNON’S INHALER.
[*]They can’t find Shannon’s inhaler until Jack says there’s nothing between him and Kate and that he thinks he would be a terrible dad.
[*]Jack can’t say there's nothing between him and Kate and that he thinks he would be a terrible dad until he connects and parts ways with Kate.
[*]Jack can’t connect and part ways with Kate until he agrees to go to the lighthouse and leaves the temple with Hurley.
[*]Jack can't agree to go with Hurley until Hurley tells him, "Jacob said to tell you, 'You have what it takes.'"
[*]Hurley can't give Jack Jacob's message until Jacob sets up the journey with Hurley.
What do you think? Are events (as listed above) create an effective narrative structure for Jack's emotional progression from the temple to the lighthouse?


You have more questions? I BET you do! Because, as I said before, you are SMART that way! Bring it! I LOVE questions!

Q: Your trick didn't work! There's a cause/effect relationship at the beginning of events, but right after Jake "connects and parts ways with Kate," NOTHING makes any sense as cause/effect until Jack starts seeing and smashing things!

[INDENT]I'll need that in a question format, please.
Q: Question format? Okay. Why didn't your trick work?

[INDENT]Ah, excellent question! The truth is, my trick worked just fine! It just proved that events as listed (Jack-related events on the island in chronological order) do not have a strong or logical cause/effect relationship that supports Jack's emotional progression. For example, Jack kicking in the door enables him to see the name and house at the top of the lighthouse (because he can't get to the top of the lighthouse without entering through the lighthouse door), but the two events do not have a cause/effect relationship. Jack kicking in the door didn't cause him to see the name and house at the top of the lighthouse (effect).
Q: So?

[INDENT]Could you please make your question more specific?
Q: SO -- did you just prove that the narrative structure whatever thingy isn't effective or what? Didn't you just prove that this screenplay sucks?

Q: !!??!!

Q: Yes you did! You just proved this screenplay sucks and makes no sense -- didn't you?! (That's in stupid question format!!)

[INDENT]No. I just proved that Jack-related events on island as listed in chronological order "make no sense." Events above, as listed, do not create an effective narrative structure for this story line (Jack's emotional progression from the temple to the lighthouse). But I didn't prove that this episode's "screenplay sucks and makes no sense." I just proved that IF we interpret Jack's emotional progression from the temple to the lighthouse using only these events, THEN this screenplay sucks and makes no sense. [IF/THEN statements = Cause/effect, btw.]
Q: How else are we supposed to interpret it? That's what happens to Jack on the island!

Q: WTF are you talking about?! Just TELL ME THE FRICKIN' ANSWER!

[INDENT]Just telling you the”frickin’” answer would not be the LOST way. (This would be a FINE example of the aforementioned “unhappy and dissatisfied” state of many LOST fans during Season 6.)

BUT I'm here to HELP, so consider this: How do we know Jack’s experiences on island (as listed above) don’t follow clear cause/effect narrative structure in sequence[/INDENT]?

Q: Because one event doesn’t always lead directly to the next event. Only the events in the same scene do that. Is that what you mean?

[INDENT]Yes. So if, for Jack on the island, one event doesn’t always lead directly to the next event, but Jack still completes the emotional journey from Point A (temple) to Point B (lighthouse) (with a successful outcome), that tells me that we are missing steps between events (holes in the story - missing pieces). Steps that Jack is taking but that we are not seeing. Locating these steps should give us the answers we are MISSING.
Q: There are holes in the script?

[INDENT]YES. There are holes in the script, BUT they are holes WE are creating as VIEWERS. We are pulling Jack’s events on the island OUT of the script and jamming them together because WE ASSUME that events on the ISLAND are only sequential or related to events on the island. As soon as we do that, the “screenplay sucks.”
Q: I don’t get it.

[INDENT]Short answer: If WE as VIEWERS are creating holes in the script (with our assumption that events on the island are sequential or related only to each other), then WE as viewers can fix the problem by NOT making that assumption. That can only mean ONE thing: Jack's events on the island are sequential and/or related to events NOT on the island.
So what Jack events happen NOT on the island?


Remember: In “Lighthouse,” Jack has MIRROR problem. He needs to “see” his reflection (identity), not as a wobbly, fluid, UNfixed image, but as ONE identity, ONE image. Obviously this doesn’t happen at Jacob’s lighthouse – Jack can’t see his reflection at all, only the image of Margo’s house (that we recognize from xJack’s visit a few scenes prior). Jack picks JACK in the end (“the house I grew up in” - in "Dr. Linus"), and that’s what Jacob needs to happen, so WHEN does it happen? When does Jack “see” himself in the “mirror?”

[B]The answer, my friends, is NOT written in the wind! The answer is DAVID.
When Jack finally gets off his butt and searches for David (instead of just waiting for him at his apartment with the gorgeous view we’ve never noticed before now), he starts with a phone message. He tells David he’s sorry for whatever he did to “upset” him. He says he’s headed over to David’s mother’s house and asks David to “stay there” until he arrives.

[I][Personal note: this same message coming from MY dad would read more like: I’m coming to find you because you are 12 and missing and I’m your father who loves you. If, when I find you, I discover that you went missing on purpose, regardless of the reason, prepare yourself to be obliterated by my wrath AND expect to never leave this house again without me holding your electrified leash until you understand/accept my primal fear of something horrible happening to you and I believe you will NEVER do anything like this again.][/I]

In this phone call it’s clear Jack’s concerned. But it’s also clear that Jack has NO idea why David’s so disgusted with him. However, Jack is aware that something’s wrong (needs to be fixed) and instead of going ballistic (like my father would), he lets David know: I’m searching for you. I am seeking you out. I know there’s information that I don’t have – there’s something I need to know about you and me. I understand I NEED to get to the bottom of this. I'm on my way.

When Jack arrives at the house, there’s no one home, and he can’t get in. He finds the KEY under a ceramic BROWN BUNNY on the sidewalk (this will be important in a later discussion). After looking around David’s room, he presses the button on the answering machine. He figures out where David is from the first call. However the SECOND message is from HIM. It’s his phone call to David from Australia telling him that something happened, he just wanted to hear his voice and that he loves him (notice he doesn't mention Christian's death).

Think about it, my lovely LOST peeps: This is the phone call CHRISTIAN NEVER MADE.


Think back to the beginning of this episode when Jack stares at himself in the reflecting pool outside the temple. Remember how Jack looks up right into a POV of the camera/US staring at him from across the water?

This SAME EXACT visual effect takes place when Jack watches David playing piano on stage.

When Jack enters, he watches David, obviously overwhelmed by the moment. However, if you look closely at the shot of Jack’s face while he watches, you can see that MORE than “lookit my amazing” kid things are expressed in it. Jack has a revelation – a moment of understanding, of recognition. And it happens simultaneously with POV shots: A close up of David’s hands playing the piano (David’s POV), then a close up of David’s face as he plays. THEN the camera swings from David’s POV, pulls back along the piano strings and finally stops opposite. We see Jack’s reaction. We see David, playing the piano across from us AND his reflection (on the piano top).

David’s face when he finishes playing. His face says it all: “I good wasn’t enough.” If you look closely at Jack, really look, you can see it (b/c Matthew Fox TOTALLY nails the moment). Jack realizes he is LOOKING at HIMSELF. DAVID is Jack’s mirror, and he’s a TRUE mirror, not a fluid, changing, UNfixed image. Jack recognizes himself in this kid. I think he recognizes what David’s feeling: “I’m not good enough because I don’t have what it takes to be good enough. I'll never be good enough.”

This is the moment when JACK identifies with JACK. After all, Jack from "The White Rabbit" up to this point is the textbook definition of “I'm not good enough” because, according to Christian, he “didn’t have what it takes” to be good enough. In Christian’s eyes, and, therefore, in Jack’s eyes, Jack would/could NEVER measure up. In 5 years of the show, Jack has never recognized any worth in himself or his abilities. He has never recognized his own doubt, fear and guilt – all directly given to him by Christian (AND MARGO) – for what they are: Christian imposed filters on Jack's self-reflection that aren't REAL or BASED on any TRUTH about who Jack really is (the kid with the courage to stick up for someone else despite the odds just because it's the right thing to do).

This scene, not coincidentally, happens AFTER Jack kicks down the lighthouse door, but BEFORE he and Hurley do their thing with the dial/mirrors/reflections.

After Jack smashes the mirrors, David finally explains his actions (making Jack think he wasn’t playing anymore, hiding the audition): “I didn’t want you to see me fail” and Jack finally puts Christian’s “influence” behind him. He realizes that Christian’s influence caused DAMAGE (doubt, fear, guilt) and he rejects it entirely when he is in Christian’s place – a father talking to his son. He gives his son his unconditional love and approval – the OPPOSITE of what Christian gives to JACK when Jack was about David’s age (“White Rabbit”).

AFTER Jack’s rejection of "how my dad did it," we see Jack staring out at the ocean and hear Jacob explain the meaning of Jack’s journey.

See where I'm going with this?


So let’s put this all together, shall we? Let’s try my cause/effect double-check trick, only THIS time, let’s include ALL of Jack’s events in the ENTIRE episode.

Opening scene: Jack is pulled back and forth between Margo (looking for Christian’s will at her house) and David (with whom Jack is trying to make an emotional connection).

[*]Jacob can't set up Jack’s journey with Hurley until Jack is mentally connected to Christian and David (in relation to himself).
[*]Hurley can't change Jack's mind about leaving (and connect him to antiChristian with Jacob’s message: “You have what it takes”) until Jacob sets up Jack’s journey with Hurley.
[*]Jack can't realize Kate (and therefore CLAIRE) are disconnected from his journey (“I hope you find what you’re looking for”)] until Jack is connected to antiChristian (through Jacob's message) and decides to leave with Hurley.
[*]Jack can't reject booze and wonder why David would be afraid of him (in the same breath he admits he was afraid of his own father) and NOT RECOGNIZE CLAIRE'S NAME in Christian's will until Jack realizes Kate (and therefore CLAIRE) are disconnected from his journey.
[*]Jack can't admit there's nothing between him and Kate, claim he'd be a terrible dad, find Shannon's inhaler (and the caves) and tell Hurley he was "led here" when he “chased the ghost of my dead father” to the caves and then smashed his coffin because “he wasn’t in it,” until he rejects booze, wonders why David would be afraid of him (in the same breath admits he was afraid of his own father) and DOESN'T RECOGNIZE CLAIRE'S NAME in Christian's will.
[*]Jack can't decide to look for David, look through his room, figure out where David is and hear/be upset by his own (antiChristian) message to David from Australia until he tells Hurley there's nothing between him and Kate, he'd make a terrible dad, and he was led "here" when he “chased the ghost of my dead father” and smashed his coffin because “he wasn’t in it,”
[*]Jack can't explain that “I came back because I was broken, and I was stupid enough to think this place could fix me.” until he sees David's room, figures out where David is and hears/is upset by his own message to David from Australia (antiChristian message).
[*]They can't find and enter the lighthouse [Note: Jack must kick down the door] until Jack explains why he came back to the island ("I was broken. . .").
[*]Jack can't enter the auditorium, see David playing on stage, and RECOGNIZE HIMSELF IN DAVID until Jack and Hurley enter the lighthouse [Jack has to kick down the door].
[*]Dogen can't interact with Jack: [Pressure, unable to help, how long has he been playing] until Jack recognizes himself in DAVID.
[*]Jack can't discover the names/numbers/images in the mirrors, identify Margo's house from 3 POV’s, switch from “he was watching us” to “why was he watching me? What does he want from me?” and smash the mirrors when Hurley doesn't have the answers until JACK recognizes himself in David AND Dogen chats with him about pressure and watching helplessly and makes Jack admit he doesn't know how long David has been playing.
[*]Jack can't listen to David's fears, identify with them (due to Christian's lousy parenting skills) and put them to rest (reject Christian) by offering David unconditional love and acceptance until Jack switches from 3 to 1 POV, realizes Jacob wants something from him and smashes the mirrors.
[*]Jack can't "see how important he is,” realize he has something he has to do. He has to figure out what it is on his own,” (according to Jacob) until Jack fixes things with David by REJECTING Christian's influence on himself (and through him, David) and embracing the antiChristian message.

Q: Okay, now I have serious questions.

[INDENT]Excellent! I LOVE questions!
Q: I'm looking over events like you have them listed, and I'm starting to see what you mean, but how would events in a different timeline, the flashsideways, affect what's going on on the island?

[INDENT]xJack's experiences influence Jack's emotional journey DIRECTLY and IN SEQUENCE with Jack's physical and emotional journey on the island. xJack is not in a different timeline. He simply can't be. xJack's experiences would HAVE TO be directly connected to JACK'S mind in order to influence Jack that way.
Q: So the flashsideways aren't a different timeline. I guess they can't be an alternate universe either, huh.

[INDENT]Now THAT depends on what you mean by "alternate universe." Remember how Jack's identity (his reflection in the water) was visually represented as being "in flux?" Since Jack doesn't go all crackpot on Dogen, at FIRST it seems logical to think that this fluid identity or UNfixed reflection doesn't affect him at all -- that it isn't real. However, if this identity flux is subconscious, it would exist in a deeper level in his mind to the point where he may not be aware of it, but it would still influence his conscious mind (like a repressed memory might give someone an irrational fear -- the fear would be real, but the reason for the fear would be hidden). The subconscious world IS an alternate universe in a way. It's an alternative world to the CONSCIOUS mind.
Q: So you think the flashsideways are repressed memories? Like they aren't real?

[INDENT]I think the flashsideways take place in our losties subconscious minds. It's the ONLY way events in the flashsideways could influence our losties behavior and emotional state on the island. I KNOW the flashsideways aren't "real." They can't be. However, who's to say what's real? If you have a repressed memory (for example), is it real?
Q: Even if I don't remember it, it's a memory of something that actually happened to me, so yeah. I'd say a repressed memory is real.

[INDENT]Okay, what if your repressed memory IS a FALSE memory of something that didn't actually happen to you?
Q: Then it wouldn't be real.

[INDENT]A repressed memory can profoundly influence you (like the irrational fear we mention above) regardless of whether you can access that memory in your subconscious or not, yes?
Q: Yes. If I have a repressed memory that causes big time fear, then, yeah, it wouldn't matter if I could actually remember where that fear came from. I'd be afraid.

[INDENT]But you wouldn't know why.
Q: Yeah. So?

[INDENT]What if that repressed memory was FALSE? You'd still have the fear and not know why, and you couldn't verify the memory as real OR false because you can't access it. Your FEAR would be real, even if the event that you remember never happened to you.
[INDENT]NOW imagine if someone, somehow could generate a repressed memory in your mind. They would have a LOT of power over the shape of your conscious mind which is basically WHO YOU ARE. YOU = Your Conscious Mind.
Q: But generating a memory like that, that would be like downloading a movie into someone's brain. Into someone's memory.

[INDENT]Potentially. The concept isn't a new on in Sci-fi. Blade Runner is the best example I can think of where intact, implanted memories become undisputed identity until they are revealed as implants.
[INDENT]I definitely don't think that's what's happening on LOST. Think of it like a directed dream state. A sequence of events that our losties must navigate guided by whoever's working the dream for them. Only the dream takes place in their subconscious minds. They don't directly remember it, but it directly influences who they are and what they do on the island.
[INDENT]It seems pretty clear to me, given the evidence, that the outcome of xJack’s experience with David directly influences Jack’s experience/choices on the island. The only way for that to happen sequentially is for xJack’s experience to take place with Jack along for the ride.
Q: But you’re saying Jack on the island doesn’t know it. What happens in his flashsideways. But then how would it influence him? Like the repressed memory fear thing works?

[INDENT]Yes. Like the repressed memory fear things works.
Q: So Jack’s flashsideways isn’t real, but it feels real, and Jack can’t remember what happens, but the consequence of what happens, he can feel it.

[INDENT]I think it informs his decision to pick a POV in the lighthouse. He chooses “me” from “us.” He chooses “The house I grew up in.” That’s the house Jack grew up in, so this must be Jack's POV.
Q: Subconsciously.

[INDENT]No, Jack is talking consciously from his POV. However, his subconscious mind is framing his POV. It’s like the foundation of his personality. The subconscious is the skeleton of the conscious mind.
Q: You said someone’s guiding this subconscious dream for Jack. Who?

[INDENT]Clearly Jacob has an influence. I don’t think it’s coincidence that Dogen shows up at the end.
Q: Dogen? Why?

[INDENT]If Jack has fulfilled his task – the goal of his flashsideways, which in this case was recognizing himself in David, then Jack needs to be pulled out of that dream. He’s done. It’s time to go home. Dogen shows up and chats about “what have we learned” in a way, but more importantly, he asks Jack how long David has been playing. Jack can’t answer that because he doesn’t know. He doesn’t know because this isn’t real. David isn’t real. Jack doesn’t have a “real” past with David, only the past that’s revealed to him during the course of the flashsideways. Notice how Jack WAITS for Dogen after “Dogen’s kid” interrupts his watching David. It’s a transition.
[INDENT]Dogen is WATCHING Jack. He has to be in order to know when to pull Jack out. When to WAKE HIM UP! Jack accuses Jacob of “watching us” and “watching me.”
Q: Is that why Jack can’t remember Claire?

[INDENT]Oh! THAT is an EXCELLENT observation! (Well done!). Christian is directly related to CLAIRE and AARON, yes? Because Christian is Claire’s dad and Aaron’s grandfather. The goal of this journey is to boot Christian’s shadow out of Jack’s subconscious mind. If Christian’s out, then Claire’s out too.
[INDENT]Notice how Jack wants Kate to come with them, but Hurley says she can’t and Kate turns him down. Kate takes her “baggage,” Claire and Aaron with her. AFTER this interaction, xJack doesn’t recognize Claire’s name and Jack says there’s nothing to “wreck” between him and Kate.
Okay. That’s enough questions! We gotta close up this post!

Q: No! Wait! I wanna know –

Sorry! Answer shop’s closed! Thank you for your participation!

(FYI: There will be more posts about Season 6 and “Lighthouse” in the near future! No worries!)


To close us out, let’s examine something else pretty interesting: the HEAVY references throughout “Lighthouse” to a few other shows and characters. I’d like to point out that the Alice in Wonderland book is the same as the one Jack reads to Aaron in “Something Nice Back Home.” And that bunny with the house key? It’s BROWN. All the bunnies we’ve seen so far have been WHITE (like Alice’s White Rabbit) EXCEPT for the brown bunny on the cover of Watership Down.

Watership Down, if you remember, was the book that Sawyer has been spotted with in the past (it turns up in his flashsideways, too). That book, it would be BOONE’s book. It was in his luggage with SHANNON’S INHALER.

Ponder that while you consider a quote from Alice in Wonderland. Jack reads this exact quote to Aaron. BUT also keep in mind that ALICE is also connected to the Looking Glass – the mirror. In both books Alice is in a DREAM WORLD.

[INDENT][I]"Alice took up the fan and gloves, and, as the hall was very hot, she kept fanning herself all the time she went on talking: `Dear, dear! How queer everything is to-day! And yesterday things went on just as usual. I wonder if I've been changed in the night. Let me think. Was I the same when I got up this morning? But if I'm not the same, the next question is, 'Who in the world am I?' Aha, that's the great puzzle!"[/I][/INDENT]

**HINT: Don’t worry about Christian’s interaction with anyone else like Ana Lucia, Sawyer, Claire and John Locke. Keep your eyes on the prize and limit yourself to Christian’s interaction with Jack since we are examining Jack’s story and nothing but Jack’s story. Jack’s only visual/personal interaction with Christian on-island are his “memories” (FBs & FFs) of him, and JACK only ever sees him on island twice: once after talking to Rose and throughout the episode where he ends up following him to the caves.

This theory created by Amy/aohora for www.LOSTblog.com.

Amy's Recap for "Lighthouse" at www.LOSTblog.com

We welcome relevant, respectful comments.
blog comments powered by Disqus