'Lost' (S5): The keys to Locke
Doc Jensen digs into the story of Doubting Thomas and the real life of Jeremy Bentham for enlightenment on themes in this week's episode. Plus: Teases galore, corrections about Narnia, and a new installment of ''Totally Lost''
You read that right. We have multiple teases about tonight’s new Lost. Most of them are hiding within (shameless plug alert!) the new installment of Totally Lost, the web series devoted to the crazy talk, over-thinking, passionate feelings, and general fun-time tomfoolery that Lost inspires in myself and Dan Snierson. You can find the show (which includes a very special guest ”appearance” from Lost exec producers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof via the modern magic of electromagnetic bobble-headed talismans) at the very end of this column. If you simply can’t wait, I offer below, tease no. 1:
Here is this week’s installment of ABC’s entertaining attempt at recapping Lost. However, there’s no untangling of my favorite knotty moment in last week’s episode: Ben’s choice of airplane reading material, James Joyce’s Ulysses. OBSCURE ULYSSES TRIVIA OF GREAT LOST SIGNIFICANCE! One of the heroes of the novel, Leopold Bloom, is utterly fixated on a big word: metempsychosis. It’s a Greek term referring to ”the transmigration of the soul” (the spirit moving from one state to another; see: the Oceanic 6 leaving the real world for the Island). It also refers specifically to the idea of reincarnation. Think: John Locke?
APOLOGY AND CLARIFICATION
I received several e-mails — some of them quite furious — taking me to task for screwing up my Chronicles of Narnia references in last week’s column. So, for the record: 1) Reepicheep is a mouse, not a rat; and 2) the yellow rings don’t take you to Narnia, they take you to the Wood Between the Worlds, a nexus that connects various different realms. (Thanks to Jamie in Bristol, Va., and Emily in Sacramento for being among the first to notice and reproach.)
Many of you wrote to say that my ”memory upload theory” makes no sense. I argued that season 1 Rousseau didn’t remember meeting season 1 Jin because season 5 Jin had not yet had the experience of meeting her. Similarly, I stated that while Faraday had the experience of encountering Desmond in the past at Oxford, he was not permitted to recall the memory until Desmond had the experience in the future. The general consensus was that my theory was convoluted to the extreme. And the general consensus is correct: I think it’s totally wrong. What I realize in retrospect was that I was trying to take into account Faraday’s insistence that the past can’t be changed. But I have since come to a new conclusion: Faraday is wrong. In fact, I think Faraday is wrong about a lot of things. And I think Lost has been subversively using this alleged fount of time-travel wisdom to misdirect the audience about where the season is headed.
So let’s leave it at this: I think the reason that Rousseau didn’t remember Jin in Season 1 is that, at that point in the story, the event hadn’t happened yet. Until Jin went back in time, she was living in a timeline where he was never part of her Island ordeal. When he did go back in time, history changed to accommodate his presence. And if Rousseau were alive today, I am SURE she would totally back me up on this.
NEXT PAGE: Teases no. 2, 3, and 4