LOST Theories - DarkUFO

Sideways (creation and explained) by zach17

Following is my theory on the details of how the sideways world was created in connection with Jughead and the explanation of sideways differences. As a long-time theory lurker and first-time theory writer, Kudos to all the theory writers out there for giving me ideas I never thought of.


I’ve seen a lot of theories debating over whether the sideways world is an alternate timeline or a purgatory world. At the conclusion of the finale, Christian clearly explains that it is indeed a purgatory-like place. However, he never denies it at being its own timeline, so I propose that the sideways universe is indeed an alternate timeline, but due to the circumstances around its creation, it eventually became to be a “purgatory” world that eventually allowed all the characters to move on. This theory stemmed from figuring out a question I had after the finale: Was it just part of a purgatorial mirage to throw us off or was there an actual point to Ben’s teaching job, Jack’s son, John’s job search, etc.?

The following are my basic assumptions:

1) Juliet’s ‘come on you son of a bitch’ smack-down on Jughead caused the bomb to explode and created the alternate universe
2) What happened, happened (thank you, Faraday)
3) Dead is dead
4) The island exists across all possible timelines/dimensions ( explains why time and space are all relative when it comes to the island)
5) The light going out means the end of the entire universe (across all dimensions, timelines)
6) The “rules” that exist are made by the protector of the island and enforced by the island

I also believe that the island is a character in and of itself, with the life of the island being the heart of the island—this is why the island is special. Because everyone has a little bit of the light inside of them (according to Mother), the island can see into the hearts & minds of all the characters. The smoke monster is able to harness this power/characteristic of the light as it is merged partly with the light from Jacob’s friendly toss in the river. This explains why the smoke monster can read people’s memories.

Based on the basic assumptions, the explosion of Jughead in 1977 created an alternate timeline that we know as the sideways universe. This explosion, caused by the LOSTies, was indeed the original incident that caused the need for the hatch button—in other words, the LOSTies had always been responsible for the incident.

Upon Jughead exploding, 3 things happened:
1) The light of the island absorbed the impact/radiation of the hydrogen bomb and performed its last exertion of energy on #2 below (this explains why those on the island that didn’t flash, such as Pierre, were still alive in the sideways universe as well as why the island was underwater)

2) The core candidates (Jack, Kate, Sawyer, Jin, Sayid, Hurley) and those that formed strong personal bonds with them over the years (Miles, Juliet) flashed to 2007. Since they were still candidates upon the explosion of the bomb and no one had replaced Jacob yet, the island refused to let them die. According to the rules (which were Jacob’s rules at the time), the candidates must do everything together. I believe that Sun and Jin were both candidates (as Jacob said he brought them both in What They Died For). To follow the rules (island not done with candidates and having to do things together), the combined energy of the island light and hydrogen bomb propelled these candidates to 2007 so that they would be in the same time existence as Sun. Because these events unfolded in the past (1977), the island knew this would happen in 2007—which explains why Sun didn’t flash with the other candidates on flight 316.

3) After absorbing the impact of the hydrogen bomb, the light of the island went out and began a slow progression towards becoming at the bottom of the ocean with Dharmaville, toe statue, etc.

These 3 events together created the sideways timeline, which we were shown throughout Season 6. Now, after these 3 things happened, the entire universe should have been destroyed after the light/island heart went out. However, because it was the LOST gang that set off the bomb it created a state of Schrodinger’s cat—where both the bomb went off and didn’t go off. It went off because it went off, but it also didn’t go off because if it did go off, then it wouldn’t have been possible for the LOSTies to go back and set it off in the first place. However, due to this paradox having to be true, both events happened even though it goes against logical human thinking. Although it doesn’t make sense that could both happen, it is indeed possible on a scientific level in the LOST world.
NOTE: I thought the following theory explained Schrodinger’s Cat in a very clear way and is how I rationalize the bomb being in both states)


Here’s a recap so far:

1) In the original timeline, the LOSTies were always responsible for the incident. However, the bomb did not go off in the original timeline. But, because the island/light exists across all dimensions, partial radiation of the bomb was still present in the light in the original timeline post-1977. This explains the creation of the hatch and pregnancy issues linked to radiation after this time. The button had to be pushed to neutralize the radiation effects left over in the light—the failsafe was something else besides Jughead that could neutralize the radiation but also would result in that particular pocket of light energy becoming unobservable by Dharma.

2) The sideways timeline was created in 1977 where the island sinks. Post-1977, there is no influence of Jacob, MIB, or the island in the world (explaining some of the differences between the two timelines)

Now, because both things happened, this alternate timeline was created that ran parallel to the original timeline starting in 1977. However, because “whatever happened, happened” and “dead is dead”, the laws of physics would not allow the newly created sideways timeline to be the pure, real timeline. They could not undo their time on the island and could not bring back those who died while on the island (i.e. Boone, Shannon, etc.). However, because of the paradox mentioned above the sideways timeline was allowed to exist, even with the island underwater. If it was anyone else who set off the bomb at the same time, then the world would have simply ended.

Because the sideways truly existed, but shouldn’t have existed at the same time, the original timeline was solidified/selected as the ultimate true timeline. The sideways timeline existed, but had a much less sense of realness. However, it was real to our characters up until their moments of realization of the original timeline. This is important as it gives life to the sideways universe as a real timeline. It was real to the characters, but upon remembering their time on the island, the awesomeness of the island and the overwhelmingly realness of the original timeline and all its relationships surpassed (or cancelled out) the significance of the sideways timeline. In doing so, the universe course corrected for people like David.

Had they not blown up the bomb, they simply would have died but they effectively created this sideways world together (thank you, Christian) by blowing up Jughead, which allowed them to move onto death together.

The downside of this is that they also trapped themselves into this alternate timeline as it was not their true life and they needed to move on as they already had lived a life that feels much realer than the one they live now. Eloise realized this but hid it from everyone else as she wanted to spend time with Daniel—she was not ready to move on. Charlie and Daniel both felt like something was wrong with this world but couldn’t quite place it. Desmond, due to his time/space travelling abilities that we saw in Season 4, was time travelling to the alternate reality, but then had the powerful revelation of his original timeline life—giving him the strongest belief possible that he has already lived his real life and living in the sideways universe suddenly feels extremely insignificant. It did not become a purgatory to Desmond until he realized the meaningless of it compared to his other life. This revelation is what Desmond was talking about when he said “I just need to show them something”.

To explain those that never died, I believe that time in the sideways timeline runs at a much slower rate compared to the original timeline due to how it was created.

Let’s recap it:

1) The alternate timeline was a real timeline from the LOST characters’ perspectives up until they realized their life in the original timeline (through love, violence, etc.)

2) This revelation of their previous life and its superior feeling of realness compared to the sideways life is what caused the characters to want to move on and turned the sideways world into a “fake world” in the eyes of our characters

As for Christian's appearance, maybe the growing number of characters' recollections fueled some light into the universe--enough to move on to the next step and allow Christian to reconnect with his son before doing so (remember the island was sunk, meaning the light in everyone went out, but the timeline was still allowed to exist b/c of the paradox)

The last of my monster rambling revolves around why certain characters were put into certain situations in the sideways world. There are a lot of holes in this section, but I thought I’d just tack it on for thought.

Based on the same assumptions mentioned above, I believe that upon creation of the sideways world, the island itself placed our characters into the situations/relationships they were in based on its glimpse into the characters’ memories. I believed the island could so easily manipulate this universe as it was not the true timeline but existed nonetheless in a paradoxical state because of a physical technicality.

Note that in the sideways universe, each character overcomes the same basic issue they had in their flashbacks in the original timeline. However, their resolution in the sideways universe is nowhere near as satisfying as their resolution to these issues on the island. I believe the island put them into these situations so that, upon realizing that the sideways world was not as real as the original, they would realize how important the island (and original timeline) was in solving the demons in their lives. In other words, it was the island’s comeback for the LOSTies wanting to make it so they never came to the island in the first place. By putting them in these situations in the alternate, it showed them just how important crashing on the island was. It also helped the characters to move on from the sideways world after their revelations of the original timeline.

Below are a few examples of why the island placed our LOSTies into which situations in the sideways universe in the format of:

1) Problem faced in original timeline
2) How problem was resolved in the sideways world
3) Why problem resolution in the island was so much better

(Juliet’s is kind of a stretch, but she’s my favorite, so I had to give her something)
Juliet OT: Before being the most bad-ass female Other, Juliet was shown having a very detrimental/negative relationship with her ex-husband Edmund Burke. Not only was her ex-husband also her boss, but he seemed controlling over Juliet’s research and flaunted his sexual escapades (i.e. that girl who was the new lab assistant)
Juliet ST: Juliet has a much better relationship with her ex-husband (Jack) as they were shown interacting very friendly and comfortably with one another in the hospital
Island Comeback: Found a much more meaningful relationship with Sawyer as well as a better sense of confidence

Jack OT: Troubled relationship with father
Jack ST: Breakthrough in relationship with son
Island Comeback: Jack grew so much more by all he went through as he still had his faith/science issue in the ST

Kate OT: Running for murder and various other crimes
Kate ST: Running for her innocence, helping Claire
Island Comeback: Kate eventually learned to stop running all together (i.e. choosing Jack at the end)
Sayid OT: Trying to find Nadia, ultimately losing her after finding her
Sayid ST: Gets to protect Nadia (still a criminal in the end)
Island Comeback: Learns to move on (Shannon) and ultimately sacrifices his life for others
Ben OT: Power issues, Alex’s death
Ben ST: Redemption in helping Alex, giving up power (to become principal)
Island Comeback: This is up to interpretation (maybe by being #2 for Hurley, instead of being THEE protector of the island, Ben overcame his power issues)

Anyways, those are my thoughts on the creation of the sideways universe and how it was influenced by the island. I’d be pleased to hear any thoughts/comments you may have (if anyone even made it this far, ha).
I’d say see you in another life, but I have a feeling theories won’t be stopping anytime soon.

We welcome relevant, respectful comments.
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