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I think I know where these alternate timelines are going. At the beginning of the season, it was reasonable to assume that everything we saw on the island was part of the straight chronology – the timeline we’ve been following since the very beginning. So, Oceanic Flight 815 crashed on the island. The pilot was eaten. Hatches were cracked. Tailies were found. Tailies were killed. Secondary islands were discovered. Others became DHARMA became original Others. Shacks rocked. Donkey wheels were spun. Everything got groovy as we did the time warp back to the 70′s. Jughead blew his stack. Jacob lived. Jacob died. MiB Locke began assembling his army. Sawyer called someone tubby. All that happened in one constant timeline – no matter where the island happened to pinball to.
Then there is the second timeline, which we originally thought was an offshoot of this timeline, a line splintered by the detonation of Jughead, thus introducing the concept of alternate dimensions into the sci-fi hodgepodge that Lost peddles so well. And that seemed to make sense…
But then MiB Locke began his recruitment drive – offering impossible dreams to anyone who would take up arms and follow him off the island. And as the Devil whispered deep into their hearts, mining for more souls, a new theory took form. Perhaps, all of this alternate time line stuff we’re seeing is actually wish fulfillment. In essence, we’re getting a view of the back nine should MiB win. The big reboot – where formerly dead people are now back among the living, and loyal followers have been granted that which they most desire, with a bit of a twist. So, Sayid pines for Nadia and while MiB resurrects her, he also places her agonizingly beyond arm’s reach of Sayid – in the embrace of his bro.
It remains to be seen – and there are some holes that need to be plugged – but it’s interesting nonetheless, and last night’s Ben-centric episode helped to underscore it a little bit, while also providing a bit of a wrinkle to the theory which I’ll iron out below.
Without further adieu, let’s get Lost.
In a twist of my usual formula, I’ll center on the “on-island” stuff first before hitting the alternate time line. So, we opened with Ben running from the temple massacre and quickly coming upon Ilyana and her decimated posse. Ben lets them all know that Sayid has gone completely to the dark side, having killed Dogen and Lennon, and then Ilyana immediately keys in on other murderous deeds – namely what happened to her father figure, Jacob. Enter our own private Ghost Whisperer, Miles, who quickly intuits that Ben was the man who sunk a dagger deep into Jacob’s heart. Miles leaves Ben with a fitting warning – “Uh oh”.
Ilyana calls Jacob the closest thing to a father she’s ever had and I think it’s proper to interpret that with a capital “F”. Given the little bit of back story we have of Ilyana – badly beaten (or burned) in a Russian hospital – she appears to have been a recipient of Jacob’s healing touch. She has pledged her life to follow her Father – to be his protector, as well as that of any candidates he finds along the way. Either way you interpret her meaning, it doesn’t bode well for Ben.
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