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'Lost' (S4): Jacob, reveal thyself!

Doc Jensen theorizes on everybody’s favorite super-creepy cabin dweller and other ghosts in the ”Lost” machine

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Terry O'Quinn, Lost

THE TEASE!

We welcome to our nutty little public access show Lost executive producer Carlton Cuse. Fresh off his big-time appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live this past week, he graciously stopped by our cardboard-and-milk crates set to drop off this quick-and-coy preview of tonight’s spooky-looking Locke-focused outing, titled ”Cabin Fever”:

”Nothing like a good jungle trek to give Locke and Ben a chance to discuss the notion of fate — and even Jacob weighs in on the topic.”

So it looks like Ben, Locke, and the cowardly lion — er, I mean Hurley — will finally get that Whaddawedonow? meeting with Jacob, the great and terrible Oz of the Island. Maybe the temporally challenged hillbilly will explain why his haunted shack keeps wandering away like a lollipop-dazzled child at a theme park. Maybe the petulant poltergeist will explain why the ghost of Christian Shephard was rocking in his chair in the season premiere. Hell, maybe Jacob will explain just who the Boone Hill he is — or THINKS he is. While we wonder and wait, here’s some helpful info and useful context for tonight’s episode — plus some to iron-clad, gotta-be-right theories!*

*Expiration date on my conviction: exactly 10:01:01 p.m. tonight.

DOC JENSEN’S GUIDELINES FOR GHOSTLINESS

Claire is dead? Charlie hangs with Hurley? Christian can cradle Aaron? WTH?! A metaphysical manifesto for defining — and debunking — undeadness on an Island lousy with apparent apparitions:

1. The Island is a place where mind can manipulate matter.

2. It is possible for a disembodied mind with a strong will to live to create a body for itself.

3. More often, however, Island ”ghosts” are merely external byproducts of acute castaway/survivor psychology.

4. Regardless, these constructs are fundamentally incomplete because they lack souls.

EXAMPLES:

1. Pseudo Christian exists because Jack’s survival demands it; his sense of self as savior/fixer/hero is shaped by his relationship to his father, and more to the point, it is continuously reinforced by his ongoing internal struggle with his daddy issues.

2. Claire died in the attack on her cabin, but Pseudo Claire exists either because her disembodied mind had a strong will to live — or because Baby Aaron needs her for his own survival. Nursing, you know.

3. Locke died in the plane crash, but his mind created a new body, though his soul is trapped in Jacob’s cabin, because LOCKE IS JACOB. Maybe.

Huh?

LIARS AND TYRANTS AND BOHRS, OH MY!

What should have been — and what ought to be! An explanation for why Locke is really Jacob. Maybe.

When did Lost first suggest the possibility of alternate realities? Was it when we realized John Locke had slipped into a dimension where his legs could work? Or maybe it was when Jack’s chance encounter with Desmond ended with the conspicuously loaded salutation, ”See you in another life, brother.” Or maybe it was this time last season, when now-dead freighter action figure Naomi parachuted onto the Island with the news that the wreckage of Oceanic 815 — complete with scores of passenger corpses — was discovered at the bottom of the ocean. Regardless, now more than ever, Lost fans must consider the possibility that the Island is a place where a world of possibilities are actually possible…that is, until the day that they all fall away, save for one.

This season has only seen this thematic concern intensify. In the premiere, we had Hurley telling Jack, ”I should have gone with you” instead of Locke — not only begging the implicit question ”Why?” but also ”How would have things been different?” In ”The Constant,” the figurative and fuzzy finally became literal and focused as Desmond traveled back in time and switched out existing events with new ones — replacing existing reality with an alternate. In Ben’s recent episode, ”The Shape of Things to Come,” we saw the seemingly all-knowing Other staggered by a course of events playing out much differently than he was expecting them to, possibly because he knew what they were supposed to be. We also saw Charles Widmore accuse Ben of stealing from him — not in a petty-theft sense, but a big-picture, You’ve-been-fleecing-my-future-bitch! sort of way. Whatever that means. (Seriously, I only understand, like, 65 percent of what I say.) I wonder if those nightmares Flash Forward Widmore has been trying to obliterate with booze are flickering images of a future that will never come to pass due to Ben’s meddling? Another question: What more from life could Charles Widmore possibly want?

NEXT PAGE: Jacob and Esau