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thoughts and musings…

May 24th, 2007

first a nitpick.  If your on an island and you walk along the shore with the ocean on your right, the only way the ocean ends up on your left is if you turn around.  Yeah, I’m looking at you Damon.

Thoughts on the bigger picture.  Lost, in my opinion has largely been about the dilemma of faith and reason.  Much like the first season finale’s name ‘Man of Science Man of Faith’, Jack Shepherd and John Locke personify those two supposedly separate people.  Lost’s hangup of name dropping a virtual who’s who of philosophers and the panorama of literary references often explore the dichotomy of faith/reason, free-will/fate, etc…

The first three season of Lost have focused on getting to the point of rescue, and the exploration of ‘fate’ in describing and detailing our favorite castaways lives.  Some accept their fate and enjoy their new digs, Locke & Rose for example.  Others desperately try anything to escape the island Jack, Sayid.  The rest fall somewhere in the middle neither thrilled with being lost, nor rejecting the idea of rescue.  Locke’s journey has been an exploration of faith, or accepting his situation and finding the best way to realize it.  This season he’s been somewhat militant in trying to force his view that the island is the best place for them by systematically destroying everything that can aid in a rescue.  Jack journey this year has been trying to find someway off the island that he sees as being counter to his whole life.  He rebels and forces Ben to provide him a way home, though foiled by Locke’s interference, then left behind when Locke went with the Others, Jack has wanted desperately to escape, never happy with accepting his fate, or having faith that crashing and surviving on the island had ‘meaning’.  Through the lens of Locke’s actions this year, I think Ben’s deceptions begin to make sense.  He is also on the side of accepting fate, and living on the island where faith in its powers is somehow rewarding.

The game changing rattlesnake in the mailbox flash-forward of last episode, closely mirrors last seasons’ finale when Locke faced his dilemma of faith in the button pressing, and realizing that he wasn’t entirely wrong to blindly press the button.  Jack is shown to struggle in the present day, because of his decision to force the rescue of the survivors against the better (arguably) judgement of both Ben and Locke.  Things didn’t turn out as rosy as he had reasoned, and now he wants to go back to the glory days of the island, having power and leading (often rashly) other people.

I expect in the last three seasons this thread between ultimate faith, and extreme reason will continue with a happy middle being where both Jack and Locke end up.  Maybe opening a bar up in Cabo or  Key West.

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  1. deboobily
    May 25th, 2007 at 10:25 | #1

    Yes, I agree, the dichotomy of faith vs. science definitely will play into the final 3 seasons. However, there’s also the underlying issue of trust. Who do we trust? Why do we trust them? Every one of the major players on this island has shown, at one time or another, that they cannot be trusted. So how does lack of trust play in to your decision to have faith in something that hasn’t proven itself to be reliable and trustworthy? I think that is the direction this show has taken in recent episodes. Yes, there’s still the issue of faith vs. science, but now I think the issue has shifted to simple trust. All of the major players have trust issues, deeply rooted in father troubles. So, with a desperate need to trust and be trusted, we will see how that plays out on their final three years.

  2. May 25th, 2007 at 11:24 | #2

    great points. Trust is often something given, as much as it is received. Trust taken advantage of, is a costly transaction, and it is hard to give trust again, once a person (ala Cooper) takes advantage of a person. We see that replaying in Locke’s life story, and that might be why he is more apt to trust something inanimate (an island, nature, hunting, mystical) that can’t immediately betray him. I think its shown that trust in something larger than man is often a better payback than trusting your fellow man.

    Trust is sorta like love, in that the more you give away, the more you get in return.

    Like a magic penny.

  3. May 25th, 2007 at 11:27 | #3

    I think there is also something to be said about Locke’s and Ben’s marketing of their faith. They severely distrust that other people will understand and accept their ideas and faith in the island or fate in general. They also lack the ability to plainly explain their position on why the island is better than being rescued.

  4. deboobily
    May 25th, 2007 at 12:00 | #4

    understandable, since they have trusted and had their trust broken time and time again. We’ve seen that in Locke’s life, not so much in Ben’s life yet (not enough backstory). Obviously, Ben & Rousseau had some trust issues, or Rousseau wouldn’t have been living alone in a jungle while ol’ mr. bug eyes raises daughter all by himself.
    Because they can’t trust themselves to trust anyone else, they can’t accept that others will implicitly trust them (hence, references to Jacob & the island).
    Now I have a headache.

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