Overthinking Lost: Season 6 Episode 10

Overthinking Lost: Season 6 Episode 10

What’s the thematic purpose of Lost’s parallel universe plot?

It’s not an epilogue.

Praise be to Jacob, it’s not an epilogue.  To be honest, I never truly believed the Sideways world represented our Losties’ happy endings, but so many people were arguing for this reading that my brain’s firewall had a hard time blocking the idea.  Then along came “Happily Ever After,” which drove the epilogue theory off a pier and let it drown in the Pacific.

But if Lost’s Sideways Universe does not represent an epilogue, what is it?  Although I don’t know the answer to that question just yet, I have some ideas.

Now that it’s evident we’re watching a true parallel universe story, I think we’d better take a hard look at some other similar plots and see how they work.  TVTropes already has a good classification system for alternate universe stories.  They distinguish between one story and another based on the difference in setting.  Here are their major types, along with what makes each one special:

-The Multiverse: In this story, there are an infinite number of universes that the characters can travel between.  For instance: Sliders.  (Professor Arturo, how I miss thee!)

-For Want of a Nail: The parallel or alt-universe is created when one big thing in the timeline is changed.  Examples: Hitler wins World War II; George Bailey is never born; the Klingons break the peace with the Federation; the Swan is never completed.

Bizarro/Mirror Universe: In this story, characters from the normal universe are found in an alt-universe, where everything is flip-flopped.  Good is evil; black is white; George Costanza is a polite, patient, likable fellow; Flashforward is a decent show.  (BOOM!)

Magical Land: Parallel dimensions accessed by portal/mirror/wardrobe/etc.  Examples: Wonderland, Narnia, Hell…

Pocket Dimension: In this story, at least one alt-universe is found inside another universe.  TVTropes gives the excellent example of Harry Potter’s Room of Requirement.  Any example of a “Faerie Land” found within our own world would also apply.

Platonic Cave: In this story, the parallel universe isn’t actually a real universe at all; it’s some sort of illusion, Michael.  Sometimes the fake world is our own world (as in The Matrix), and sometimes the fake world is a wonderful dream world that isn’t quite right (as in the trippy masquerade ball scene from Labyrinth).

TVTropes’s classification of parallel universe plots based on setting and point of divergence works well, but it doesn’t help us make predictions about this season of Lost.  Unfortunately, we just don’t know how the Sideways universe differs from our “regular” Island universe, and season six’s first ten episodes have given us few clues about what the point of divergence between these two worlds is.  At first we thought the Sideways Universe came to be after the Losties blew up the Swan (thus making Lost season 6 a “For Want of a Nail” plot), but that doesn’t seem to fit, based on what we now know about the Alt-Universe.  For instance, if the Losties nuked the Island in 1977, why are Ben, Ben’s dad, Widmore, and Eloise alive?  Shouldn’t they have been, you know, exploded?  And why is the Island underwater in the Sideways universe?  We don’t yet know.  Could it be that the Sideways Universe is not a “For Want of a Nail” universe, as we thought, but secretly a “Bizarro Universe,” a “Pocket Dimension,” or some kind of “Platonic Cave”?

Because I can’t yet answer that question for you, I feel we need another classification system that is not based on a story’s setting or point of divergence.  Back when I was writing about season four, I classified time-travel plots based not on the method of time-travel or the variability of their respective timelines but based on the themes they carried.  It seems to me that different parallel universe plots have different themes, as well.  My guess is that figuring out Lost’s themes will likely allow us to work backwards and figure out season six’s plot.  Make sense?

Sure, it does.

DISCLAIMER: I’m not all that well-read on the subject of parallel worlds, primarily because I don’t read many superhero comic books, so if you have any insight on these matters, please feel free to add to/correct my theories in the comment section below.


Big Theme 1: There But For the Grace of God Go We

The point of these kinds of stories is for the author to say, “Look how different things could have turned out!  Nothing is destined!”  But this silent exclamation is made for different reasons, depending on the setting.

Theme 1a) IF this plot is an alternate history plot, THEN the theme usually is, “Wow, world history is based much more on randomness than we thought!”  (Example: The alt-Superman comic, Red Son, which shows how Superman originally landed in the Soviet Union instead of the U.S. and became a communist uber-mensch.)  This seems to be somewhat of a way of the author deconstructing or undermining most people’s accepted idea of history, which was that Things Happened For a Reason.  These alternate histories also, purposefully or not, go against the idea that Progress Marches On.  Consider, for example, the Fallout series.  Progress did not, in fact, march on in Fallout’s alternate history.  Progress, in fact, went kablooey.

Is Lost season 6 using this theme?: As far as I can tell, no.  Although it does seem like the Sideways world is a kind of alternate history, Lost isn’t a big fan of randomness as a theme.  The show, instead, pits fate and free will against each other.  Fate, to Lost, means that history is destined to follow a certain path.  Free will, to Lost, means that history can be changed by willful historical actors (a.k.a. Special People).  Randomness doesn’t really come into play in this show at all.


Theme 1b) IF the plot is a character-based study, THEN the theme usually is, “One’s character or genes does not determine his personality!  One’s environment does!”  It’s the nature/nurture debate all over again, and nurture wins.  For example, in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode, “Tapestry,” Q gives Jean-Luc Picard a glimpse of an alternate timeline in which Picard does not get into a fight with some fiery Nausicaans and thus does not get stabbed and get an artificial heart.  This leads alt-Picard to become a weak-willed, boring, un-ambitious nice guy who never grows up to become the starship captain we all know and love.  The moral of the story is: It is our experiences, not our genes or temperament, that shape us.

Is Lost season 6 using this theme?: Sometimes yes, sometimes no.  In the flash sideways, some the alt-characters seem completely different from their “normal” selves and others don’t.  So far, the people who have changed the most in the alt-timeline are John Locke, Jack, Hurley, Desmond, Ben, Ethan, and Rose.  Those who have changed somewhat include Faraday, Widmore, Eloise, Sawyer, Charlie, Sun, and Jin.  And those who seem not to have changed, really, at all include Sayid, Artz, Keamy, Mikhail, Claire (although she did change a lot on the Island over the past three years), and Kate.

Bizarro Seinfeld

Theme 1c) IF the plot is a “Mirror Universe” story, THEN the theme usually is, “Humans tend to suck.”  To use another Star Trek example, these stories say that, if you take idealistic Captain Kirk or Benjamin Sisko out of their idyllic Federation society and stick them in a Mirror Universe, they’ll quickly become immoral or amoral assholes.  Also, Spock will grow a beard.

Is Lost season 6 using this theme?: This is an interesting question.  At first, I was inclined to say, “No,” because the “Mirror” (or Alt, or Sideways) Universe in Lost’s season six seems in many ways to be much nicer than the regular Island world.  But then I thought, “Aha!  What if the regular Island world is the Evil Bizarro World, and the Sideways World is on the good side of the mirror?”  (I don’t actually believe this theory, but it’s interesting, ain’t it?)

Plato's Cave

Big Theme 2: Plato Was Right

This is the “Allegory of the Cave” story, also known to you little’uns as “The Matrix.”  In this kind of parallel worlds story, one world is “real” and one is an illusion.  This theme seems to come in two flavors:

Theme 2a) The Lotus Eater theme, a.k.a. “Heaven Ain’t All It’s Cracked Up to Be.”  In this story, the real word sucks (but, hey, at least it’s real!), and the illusionary world is fairly awesome…at first glance.  Eventually, though, the paradise starts to seem a little too nice, as in the book/movie Coraline.  These stories tend to be about what the protagonists think they want versus what they actually need.  At the beginning of the book, Coraline thinks she needs a perfect, doting mother, but she learns she actually needs to chill out and forgive her real parents for not being perfect.

Is Lost season 6 using this theme?: Possibly!  This week, Eloise alluded to it by telling Desmond, “This is what you wanted all along!  No emotional attachments and the approval of Charles Widmore, your stand-in Daddy!  This is your own version of Heaven!  Mwahahaha!”  Luckily, Charlie came along and opened Desmond’s eyes to a universe-shattering love that allowed him access to the “real” world of the Island and the thing he really needs, which is Penny.  But if the Sideways-verse is an illusory world made of wishes and shadows, who is making the illusion?  Could it be… Smokey?

On the other hand, the Sideways World isn’t heavenly for everyone.  Alt-Sun’s been shot in the womb and had her bank account emptied by her dad; alt-Locke still can’t walk (although he seems to be OK with that); alt-Sayid is still a murderer (although you can argue that secretly he’s always wanted to be one); and alt-Kate is still on the run (although you can argue that she’s such a screwed up person that constantly running is “heavenly” for her)…

Theme 2b) The Prison of Illusions.  In this story, which basically the opposite of the Lotus Eater story, the illusory/shadow world is a hellish prison, while the “real” world (which is very difficult to access) is super-duper-sweet.  Consider, for example, almost every world religion. According to them, this material world we’re living in is false and awful, but if we’re good/holy/whatever, we’ll get to break through to the “real” world of Heaven/Nirvana/Land of Milk and Honey and 100 Nubile Virgins.  Sweet sweet.

Is Lost season 6 using this theme?: I don’t think so—or, not yet, anyway.  But, interestingly, this seems to be the storyline the Man in Black is feeding to his minions.  “We’re trapped together in this awful Island prison,” he says.  “It’s Hell,” he says.  “And if you help me,” he says, “you’ll be free, you’ll to ascend [in an airplane] to a higher realm [called L.A.], and you’ll be reunited with your dead loved ones [as in Heaven].”  Except we all know that Smokey is a big, fat liar—or at least a big, fat manipulator.  Could it be that Lost is saying that the idea that our world is a prison made of illusions is itself an illusion?! My mind has been blown.

The Dream of Akinosuke

Big Theme 3: Life is But a Dream

In this story, there are two worlds/universes, but one is revealed to be a dream dreamt by the someone in the real world.  Ah, but then the question is, Who is to say that the “real” world isn’t someone else’s dream?  Yeah.  Chew on that one, readers.  Examples: The end of that post-apocalyptic episode of “American Dad” and Final Fantasy X.  (Yes, I referenced a Final Fantasy game in this literary treatise.  You wanna fight about it?)  Another similar, and interesting case, is the Japanese folktale “The Dream of Akinosuke,” which seemed to inspire the Star Trek: TNG episode “The Inner Light.”  The folktale is quite beautiful, and it involves what could be construed as a “dreamed universe.”  Or, it could be said that the story shows two separate universes; it just so happens that one universe is contained within the other.  Anyway, in all of these stories, the main theme seems to be, “Life is fleeting.  Enjoy it knowing it’s going to end.”

Is Lost season 6 using this theme?: I don’t think so.  No, not at all.  This “life is but a dream” theme seems to be saying that life and love and family are ephmeral, so we should enjoy them while we have them.  Lost, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to think ANYTHING is ephemeral: Ghosts are everywhere; people go on living for hundreds of years due to a magical touch from a demi-god; love is considered a Constant that can transcend space and time…

Road to the Multiverse

Big Theme 4: Aren’t Multiverses Fun?

It occurred to me as I was writing this post that all of the examples I gave involved “separate but not equal” parallel universes.  In each above example, one of the universes is considered more “real” than the others.  But clearly there are stories in which there are multiple universes, and each one is considered just as real as the rest.  Some examples of Multiverse stories include His Dark Materials, the multiverse episode of Family Guy, the multiverse episode of Futurama, Sliders…

But, in all of these, the multiverse theme seems to be nothing more complex than, “Gee, isn’t traveling between one universe and another fun?”  That’s not to say that these text don’t have other, non-multiverse-related themes.  His Dark Materials, for instance, talks a lot about God and organized religion and sex and the soul and so on… but none of these themes has anything to do with multiverses.  It seems to me that the multiverses in these texts exist primarily as “sci-fi window dressing” rather than carriers for themes.

But, then, I don’t have that much of a background dealing with this kind of story—I haven’t read The Dark Tower, for instance—so you tell me if I’m completely off-base here.  Are there “separate but equal” multiverse stories in which the act of traveling between one ‘verse and other has thematic weight?

Is Lost season 6 using this theme?: Not yet.  So far, Lost has only made us aware of two universes, and one of them (the Sideways Universe) is shot in such a way as to make us feel like it’s not really real.  As much as we might be confused by the writers’ decision to add a Sideways Universe, and as much as some of us may dislike the way the flashsideways have been handled, it does seem like there is a thematic purpose to them.  I actually do still have enough faith in Lost’s writers to say, “They didn’t do this just because they think multiverses are fun.”  Of course, we’ll have to wait and see for sure.

H/T to Lostpedia, my favorite screencappers


I’m not sure these themes are the only ones associated with parallel universe stories, but I think my list is a good start.  By skimming through the above analysis and working backwards from Lost’s main themes, I’m going to say that Lost’s Sideways Universe has the greatest chance of turning out to be some kind of “universe of illusions” created by some god-like figure such as the Man in Black or Jacob–not by the Swan explosion.  But, hey, I could be wrong.  What do you think?

[You tell me: what do YOU think the Sideways Universe is?  And, thematically, why is it there?  Why did the writers use a parallel universe plot in Lost’s last season?  What are they trying to say?  Sound off in the comments.]

26 Comments on “Overthinking Lost: Season 6 Episode 10”

  1. rdriley #

    I still think it’s possible we’re dealing with a “want of a nail” scenario here.

    I don’t know where on the island Ben, his dad, Widmore and Eloise were when the bomb went off in 77, but it’s definitely possible that they were far enough away to get off the island before it sank (assuming that’s what happened).

    So … the bomb goes boom … the Others (some of them, anyway) manage to evacuate, perhaps to Hydra island … the damage done by the bomb causes the island to sink to the bottom of the ocean.

    One thing that I think supports this theory is the Lighthouse, which MAY have functioned as something similar to Stephen King’s Dark Tower, a center-point for all the infinite universes out there. If I’m right here, the lighthouse and its various mirrors may have given Jacob the ability to look for Jack and Hurley and all the other candidates in all the universes out there, and may even have provided some sort of means for traveling to and from those places. Remember that Jacob originally told Hurley the lighthouse would help someone find their way to the island …


  2. Labfiend #

    I really don’t think the epilogue idea has been debunked, mostly because I see another explanation.

    -Faraday says that the time split was caused by the release of tons of electromagnetic energy, like a nuclear bomb going off
    -Desmond was brought to the island by Widmore because of his resistance to electromagnetism. He is told he will need to make a sacrifice.
    -Widmore needed Jin to point them to a certain pocket of EM. There were three red circles, one of which would be the Swan, another would be the Orchid, and a third would HAVE to be another location we have never seen or a deeper part of one that we have already visited.

    Putting this all together indicates to me that Widmore needs Desmond to find this 3rd pocket, do something to it that forces it to overload, and that doing so will somehow cause the alternate timeline. This will most likely be done as a last ditch effort to stop MIB from doing whatever the heck he’s trying to do.


  3. TheMagician #

    Just a heads up for all the people who read comments: The final scene (could be a fake scene they shot, because they did shoot fake scenes, like for the season 4 finale coffin revelation) including a lot of details about the grand finale has leaked. Personally I’m only going to read comments on this site by people who have been commenting since the beginning. If you use other Lost related sites, be careful what you read. I think Lostpedia has closed registrations, but still you never know if someone’s gonna spoil it as a theory or even in the title.


  4. Labfiend #

    I’m a long time reader, first time poster, and avidly antispoiler. I usually even stay away from the trailers for next week’s episode. I can understand why people may not think me trust worthy, but I came up with the above theory completely through my own logic and have been weirded out that nobody else seems to have thought of it first.


  5. TheMagician #

    @Labfiend: Yeah I’m like that as well, I don’t even want to know the title of the next episode. But I just want to be safe now. I’ve spent years on this show and I don’t want someone to spoil the ending for me online when there’s only eight hours left (finale is 2-hour episode). Of course the odds of someone actually spoiling it on this site in the comments are lower than somewhere else… And someone intending to spoil the ending could always post as someone else… But lately I haven’t really read any comments at all, except for few, so I figured if I’m gonna read them I might just read the ones by people I recognize. I think a lot of people are doing the same on other sites, leaving to avoid spoilers, or bookmarking only certain topics on forums they know they can trust spoiler-free. What’s the history on spoiling the endings on this site anyway? Has it ever happened? If it hasn’t been a problem before then it’s not that big of a concern for me…


  6. mlawski OTI Staff #

    Yeah, quick reminder, folks: We at Overthinking Lost don’t do spoilers. If you spoil something in the comments, you’ll make baby Jesus/Mohammed/Moses/Darwin/an adorably fluffy kitty cat cry.


  7. Bob #

    @rdriley – I agree with you, the Alt-verse can still be a “Want of a Nail”. Like many of my fellow Child of the 80’s, I take Back to the Future to heart and what the Losties did in 1977 wouldn’t cause a paradox but change everything they touched.

    In B2tF, Marty traveled back to 1955 and caused his parents not to get together. Logically this would be a paradox because if he wasn’t born, he couldn’t go back in time to break up his parents causing an infinite loop.

    In LOST, the islanders got to the island, traveled back in time and did something to stop them from arriving to the island. Following a linear timeline, Oceanic crashed, they traveled back in time all the way to the 50’s and later destroyed the bomb in 1977. Following the B2tF example, the plane doesn’t crash in 2004 meaning they don’t travel to the 50’s. Originally, the Island losties do something in the 50’s which ripple down to Ben, Widmore, et al to be on the island in 1977. But if they don’t arrive in the 1950’s, don’t tell Eloise that she just killed her son, etc then for the next 20 years things unfold differently in 1977. It all rests on a paradox, but functionally it is logical.

    (Sorry, it is very hard to articulate in words. I once wrote a paper explaining how John Conner can be born logically in a Terminator Paradox and it took 7 pages! My friends said it was a mixture of madness and genius)


  8. Cimmerius #

    I seem to remember Ben and his dad being among those evacuated from the island during the season 5 finale. For Eloise and Widmore I got nothing.


  9. Kevin #

    @mlawski: I’m surprised that you didn’t mention probably the most relevant parallel-universes show to compare to Lost: “Fringe.” (No worries, though — I don’t watch it myself, just hear things about it here and there.) It features two parallel universes in which history has unfolded differently, and someone’s figured out a way to breach the barrier between them and travel back and forth. And of course, hijinks ensue.

    Actually, the REAL way it’s relevant to Lost is that they’re both J.J. Abrams shows… though let’s be honest, J.J. has about as much to do with Lost as *I* do. Someone who’s actually seen episodes of Fringe should probably comment, since I only caught the pilot and was underwhelmed…

    @Labfiend: I like your thinking, and have been thinking along those same lines. Though Desmond’s role is likely to be different — I don’t think Widmore even knows about the alternate timeline. I actually wonder if Widmore is thinking much more literally — that Desmond’s “sacrifice” is meant to be his death. Probably not, though. I just wish we’d be able to get the full backstories on BOTH the island and sideways histories… but they don’t have time. Hell, we don’t even know the island history besides the rough outline.

    (I do jokingly wonder if Darlton will one day release “LOST: The Special Edition” a la George Lucas, to help fix some of the series’ inconsistencies over the years, and help fill in some of the blanks they didn’t have time to do in the original run)

    As for spoilers:
    I’m staying spoiler-free this season and have been loving it, though unfortunately I’ve happened across “innocent” little spoilers that I didn’t want to see — I read the name of the finale in a newspaper article after doing my damnedest to avoid it online, though I realize now it probably wasn’t worth the effort anyway. (I WILL say that the title “Jack Becomes Jacob and Kate Chooses Sawyer” is a little too on-the-nose for such a big episode…) Seriously though, I think it’s taught me one thing: personally, there’s a fine line between trying to stay spoiler-free and spending too much effort trying to avoid those spoilers to being with. I had been skipping going to some of my favorite websites out of fear I’d catch something I didn’t want to see… then realized I was missing out on other content I did want, all in the effort not to see things like episode titles and such. So there’s a median that we all need to find.

    (I will say that it’s fun to play with the expectations of spoilerphobes — I have a friend who was a HUGE BSG fan, and also a spoilerphobe… after I’d see an episode he hadn’t had a chance to watch yet, I’d always mail or IM him “Can you BELIEVE Adama is a Cylon??!!” or some variation thereof… he always bought it, too. Never got old!)


  10. Sheely #

    Guys, I saw the leaked scene. Omar is the person who Jacob is bringing to the island with the lighthouse. He arrives on a sled called Rosebud, sets off a pocket of electromagnetic energy, and dies. But actually, he was dead the whole time.


  11. mlawski OTI Staff #

    @Kevin: Unfortunately, I don’t watch Fringe, either. Any Fringe-watchers care to comment?


  12. mlawski OTI Staff #

    @Sheely: Anna Karenina DIES?!


  13. stokes #

    She throws herself under her sled, a symbol of her lost youth and innocence.


  14. stokes #

    Oh wait, crap, Sheely already made the sled joke. Uh… she… okay, at the end, she just points at Veronica Cartwright and goes “SHKREEEAEEEEE!!!” at the top of her lungs?


  15. Jon Eric #

    About Fringe…

    So far, the main theme of Fringe seems to be that when the two universes interact, bad things happen. They’re still somewhat cryptic about the nature of why it’s bad, but many of the events of “The Pattern” seem to have their origin in one incidet in 1986, when (for the first time, as far as we know) someone crossed from one universe to the other.

    So, the two universes in Fringe seem to be “separate, but equal,” but heaven help you if you mix them. The big theme being that messing with such things is capital-b Bad, and if you do it, the Universe will try to “correct” itself. In short: Don’t play God.

    This, to me, suggests a variation which might be relevant to what’s going on in Lost right now: one in which the theme is that some things are predestined, and if such a thing does not come to pass, then it creates a rift – a temporary universe – which will eventually repair itself. Similar to the “Want of a nail” scenario, I suppose, only it’s not “What if this one thing were different,” but rather the more didactic “This was never supposed to be different, so quit fiddling with it.”

    Basically, I think this is what’s going on in Lost. The Losties changed something in the past, which prevented something which was supposed to happen in the present. I think the Universe is, somehow, working on fixing it.

    @Sheely: You forgot to mention the part where he’s also Kaiser Soze.


  16. Jon Eric #

    @stokes: you can always go with the good old “…And then they got back home and everyone was a Nazi,” right?


  17. Gab #

    About spoilers, this shirt is made of awesome (and contains nothing but spoilers for a bunch of movies and books, so don’t click it if you’re a spoiler-phobe, haven’t read the sixth Harry Potter book, seen _Psycho_ or at ton of other movies most everybody knows the ending to):


    Anyhoo, Jon Eric, you and I seem to think very, very similarly more often than not: I was going to say something very close to what you said, so I’ll just let you take the credit for the wording. Yay-uh.


  18. Kevin #

    @Gab: love the shirt, though the only one I’d quibble with is “Neo is the one.” Didn’t they talk about that in the trailers before the movie ever came out? I’ve never thought of that as being a “spoiler.” (Now, if it said “THE MATRIX will have two terrible sequels, THAT would have been a great spoiler in 1999…)

    JonEric: good theory, and it actually reminds me of a question I’ve been meaning to pose for a month now and keep forgetting to ask:

    What are the odds that everyone who was at the Swan station when Jughead went off is now “special” like Desmond? Think about it: they’re at the site of a HUGE output of electromagnetic energy… they all seem to have survived… they all have the vague sense there’s another universe in which they’re living parallel lives… so when the time comes, will they be able to move between universes (either with or without the help of a “constant”)? Will Desmond be able to teach them how to do it?

    My guess is no, because while you might expect everyone from the incident to have some sense there’s an alternate universe… remember, it was oddly SUN who had a “mirror moment,” even though she never traveled back in time with the rest of the Ajira folks to detonate Jughead. So apparently it’s EVERY Oceanic survivor who should have some sense that something’s different now — which would also be the reason that Locke had a mirror moment.

    Also: I’m going to go out on a limb here with a bold prediction: Jughead NEVER went off, in ANY timeline. Here’s my thinking:

    I believe the powers-that-be have said that the “white flash of light” was the island transporting everyone at the Incident back to the present. That’s why everyone went back to an unaltered 2007, and in theory, why we now have two universes on the show. But remember: Juliet was transported as well. And assuming that the following is true:
    – The white flash was indeed the island sending people to 2007
    – It was Juliet whacking on Jughead with a rock that would set it off
    – The flash sent Juliet to 2007 with everyone else
    Doesn’t it stand to reason that Juliet wasn’t there to hit Jughead with the rock for the final time?

    No, my theory is that somehow Smokey “won” before Jughead would have ever made a difference to the timeline(s), and what we’re seeing isn’t the result of Jughead going off — Jughead NEVER went off — but it’s a result of what would happen if Smokey had been freed. (It would also explain why, in the “sideways” universe, the island is completely intact at the bottom of the ocean, without any sort of damage to it)

    I’m probably very wrong, however. [shrug]


  19. Bob #

    @Kevin – I like your ‘Jughead didn’t go off’ theory. I guess I just accepted it went off but when you stop to think about it, it doesn’t make sense.

    @Sheely – when you said Omar, is it wrong that I think of Omar Devone Little (Michael K. Williams) and not LOST’s Omar (Anthony Azizi). I can see the smoke monster hearing “Omar’s coming” and trying to hide behind the sonic fence.

    @Jon Eric – Saw the first three episodes of Fringe and hated the Episodic parts but loved the Serialized parts (It seemed 50 minutes of Episodic, 10 of Serialized). Is it still like this?

    @Spoilers – I’ve purposely tried to stay away from LOST spoilers. I found out the name of the last episode because I listen to the official LOST podcast, but that is it. Actually, here and EW.com are the only non-ABC places I go for LOST information.

    Spoiler Shirts – The original in my opinion is still the best (Which gives a better Matrix spoiler):


    with the sequal shirt:



  20. dock #

    Jughead didnt go off……THAT just blew my mind….I frikkin LOVE this site. If I get your logo tattooed across my back, would you guys spring for the tab?


  21. Kevin #

    @Bob: yeah, I think the only way it would have worked is for the island to magically time-shift everyone at the EXACT moment Juliet set the bomb off… while I grant that it’s possible — especially on Lost — I’m not sure I buy it.

    Also, re: Fringe — here’s another connection to Lost (Jon Eric can confirm): there are odd bald guys called “Observers” who are, essentially, timecops… they’re seen behind the scenes of all kinds of historical events to make sure history is playing out as expected. They might be able to move back and forth between all the universes (Wikipedia was unclear on that point)… but in any case, they don’t seem all that different from Eloise and her manipulating on Lost. (Again: I haven’t seen the show!)

    Finally, one last word about “Happily Ever After”:
    Was anyone else a little disappointed that among Daniel Faraday’s nighttime scribblings in the Sideways world… he didn’t write the phrase “Desmond Hume is my constant”? I thought that would have been the perfect moment — he would have known he was on to something when Desmond introduced himself to Eloise and he recognized the name. (More importantly… it finally would have resolved that moment from “The Constant,” which was a nice way to end the episode but never went anywhere”)


  22. Gab #

    @Kevin: I was *totally* looking in the notebook for “Desmond Hume is my constant” when I watched! I felt thoroughly let down by its noticeable absence. But maybe it’s on a different page?

    Shirts: An updated one needs to say, “The Comedian dies.”


  23. Kevin #

    Wow… WOW.

    I cannot WAIT for the next Lost talkback… I was so stunned by tonight’s happenings, I just had to say something ahead of time.

    Brilliantly audacious. This was the first episode of the season in which I felt the tension in each act. Just fantastic!


  24. mlawski OTI Staff #

    @Kevin: When you read tomorrow’s post, you will find that I, too, used the word “audacious.” You know what this means, don’t you? I think this makes us Lost twins.


  25. Brimstone #

    I haven’t been following lost but Micheal Moorcock writes the ‘all parallel universes are equally fun’ fiction and no, he doesn’t really place thematic weight on them. they’re just fun/dark places to travel to

    and Dark Tower is a bit more complicated then that

    i gotta say… i live in Australia, and LOST isn’t popular here, and that confuses the hell out of me and i want to know why


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