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In the finale of season 5, we are finally shown the ever-mysterious Jacob, but as usual, we are left with many unanswered questions. The most prominent on my mind was "Who is the person we all thought was Jacob?" The first thing I thought when I saw the "new" Jacob was, "He doesn't have brown eyes! He can't be Jacob!" Up until The Incident, Parts 1 & 2, everyone thought Jacob was the image we all saw in The Man Behind the Curtain and the flashes of a brown eye.
In the clip show aired just before The Incident, Parts 1 & 2 Carlton and Damon had a few comments on Jacob that I found very odd. Carlton said, "We've seen apparitions that may or may not have been Jacob" and Damon said, "If we've been shown Jacob, we haven't been told that." Initially I assumed that they were referring to the fact that Ben was the one to call the inhabitant of the cabin "Jacob" and, of course, Ben lies. However, it goes deeper than just trusting Ben's word. The Season 3 DVD has a commentary for The Man Behind the Curtain done by Damon, Carlton and Micheal Emerson. In the commentary, they discuss many aspects of Ben's character, his relationship with his father, the Island and Jacob. In the cabin scene, they mention that the audience can see glimpses of Jacob! Carlton actually says that we can see Jacob's eye and that the shadowy figure is Jacob. While I realize that this is not "the show" telling us we are seeing Jacob, anyone listening to the commentary is being told by the shows creators that what we are seeing is Jacob. As much as I want to believe them that they have had all this stuff figured out for long time, I really feel that this is a major contradiction. I can understand that some details may change along the way as they build the story, but I would hope that when they produced that pivotal episode back in season 3, they had at least decided whether or not Jacob was actually in the cabin.
My next question is, "What did Ben know about the cabin?" Ben has stated that he never heard or saw Jacob, and it would seem that he is telling the truth. He also says he received correspondence from Jacob through Richard, implying that Richard would meet with Jacob and bring this back to Ben. Richard knows that Jacob lives in the statue, and has never made any reference to the cabin, so who told Ben about the cabin? There is the possibility that Ben just happened to find it in the woods, but since the cabin moves and appears and disappears periodically, this seems unlikely. Another possibility (very far fetched, I know) is that someone else told Ben that Jacob lived in that cabin to purposely lead him down the wrong path. It would seem that Ben was at odds with Charles Widmore for quite a while before Charles was banished from the Island. Perhaps Charles knew about the cabin, and that it was inhabited by something or someone sinister. He then told Ben that Jacob lived there, but that Richard was keeping this from him. Ben goes to the cabin, sees no one and is disappointed because he thinks he can not see or hear Jacob.(Yes, I realize there is basically no evidence to support this, but there is not really any explanation, so I am just trying to come up with one that could fit.) When Locke comes along and demands to see Jacob, Ben decides to take him to the cabin because he believes Locke will see nothing and also be discouraged. Again, if you listen to the commentary for The Man Behind the Curtain, Damon and Carlton clearly discuss that this was Ben's intention. Damon says that Ben "... is about 95% sure that Locke won't see anything" and that basically this was a test to help Ben determine if Locke really was "chosen."
It seems to be the consensus of fans on Lostpedia that Jacob's nemesis was the one living in the cabin. While that is a possibility, I think people are jumping the gun on this one. To begin with, the two men we see in the opening sequence of The Incident, Parts 1 & 2 both have blue eyes, not brown meaning that we did not see their eyes in The Man Behind the Curtain. And there is the theory that Jacob's nemesis is the same entity as The Monster. I agree this is a possibility and, of course, this also means that this entity can take on a variety of forms which could include the above mentioned silhouette with the brown eye. But if we want to say that Mr. Brown Eye was some form of a shape shifter, than he could have just as well been anyone. Let us consider the circle of ash. It has been established that this was a way of containing whoever was in the cabin and when Ilana, Bram and their party came to the cabin, the circle had been purposely broken, pushed in form the outside. Who would have done such a thing and why? Whoever did it must have known who was in the cabin and wanted to let them out for some purpose. This would have to had occurred sometime between the visit Locke made to the cabin when Christian told him to move the Island and three years after that when Ilana stopped by. Since the 815 survivors were either killed by the mercenaries, taken to the freighter on the Zodiac raft, flown off in the helicopter by Lapidus or transported away by a time flash very shortly after Locke spoke to Christian, it was probably not any of them. The Others were on the Island, of course, and apparently were still present after the time flash that removed everyone else, but why would they break the circle? At this point we do not even know whether any of them had any knowledge of the cabin. So that leaves Keamy and the mercenaries. They had knowledge of certain Island secrets given to them by Widmore, and their secondary protocol was to do anything and everything to capture Ben. Could this have included releasing some evil force that would have either gone after Ben or at least distracted his people from protecting him? (Again, I realize this is a stretch, but someone moved that ash and I am just searching for an explanation that could fit.) All that being said, there is a flaw in the "Jacob's Nemesis was in the cabin and is The Monster" theory. If Mr. Brown Eye was the Nemesis and therefore Smokey, how was he contained by the circle of ash? We see the Monster roaming around the Island, seemingly not contained by anything. So let me put forth my theory- Mr. Brown Eye is someone else- not Jacob, not his Nemesis- someone else completely. As much as I always thought the "Jack is Jacob" theory was ridiculous, I am now starting to wonder if whoever was in the cabin is actually some incarnation of someone we already know (and I say this mostly because if they introduce yet another major character this late in the game, I might have to scream at my TV). It has been seen that the Monster can take the form of dead people and as we sometimes see dead people roaming around the Island, it is possible that these dead people are some how acting as embodiments of the Monster (or maybe not, but for the sake of this argument, let us assume). One such possible example is Christian Shephard. He is "undead" (whatever that means) and may be a manifestation or embodiment of the Monster. He can come and go from the cabin at will, as well as travel through time and was seen by Hurley in the cabin with Mr. Brown Eye. So unless the Monster/Nemesis was having a conversation with himself, he can not be both Christian and Mr. Brown. It appears that the Nemesis was able to take over Locke's dead body and while retaining Locke's memories, move about on the Island and interact with people to accomplish his own goals. This to me seems very similar to what has been happening with Christian's body. He still knows who Christian's son is, but he also knows about moving the Island and is able to show up on the edge of the beach, in the cabin and in the FDW chamber. It seems to me that there is more evidence pointing to Christian being an embodiment of Nemesis/Monster than Mr. Brown Eye.
Finally, there are the questions raised by Ilana, Bram and the gang showing up at the cabin. While they never explicitly say who it is they are going to see, there is some evidence that points to it being Jacob. First of all, Jacob went to Ilana off the Island at some point and asked for her help. She seemed to know who he was and maybe even what kind of help he needed. Next, Bram told Lapidus that they were going to show "someone" Locke's dead body in order to let them know what they were up against. I'll admit this is where things get fuzzy. I want to say that it had to be Jacob because they must have known that Un-Locke was the Nemesis after finding Locke's dead body, and they wanted to warn Jacob that his Nemesis had taken on another form. But then, there is the ash. They obviously knew that it was suppose to be there and that it served a purpose, but if the ash was holding Jacob, presumably their leader or at least their ally, captive in the cabin and all you had to do was kick a hole in it to let him out, wouldn't they have freed him long ago? And one could argue that they expected to find the Nemesis imprisoned in the cabin, but why would they want to show him Locke's body? Really, no matter who was being held in the cabin by the ash other than Jacob, I don't understand why they would need to show that person Locke's body. But moving on, Ilana seeing that the ring of ash had been broken and finding the cabin abandoned says, "He's not there; hasn't been in a long time. Someone else has been using it." So whoever has been using it lately was not the person they were initially looking for, and as far as how long "a long time" is, it could be the three years since the 815ers left and presumably when someone moved the ash or it could be longer than that. Between Ilana and Ben both seeming to think that they could find Jacob in the cabin, either Jacob was in this cabin at some time or someone impersonating Jacob was in the cabin. Perhaps Mr. Brown Eye had people believing he was Jacob so that he could order them around. But again, why was he being held captive and why wouldn't anyone believing he was Jacob let him out? And then there is the tapestry pinned to the wall with what is possibly Jacob's knife. It seems like a rather violent symbol left by someone who meant Jacob harm, not a "Hey, meet me at the statue!" note left by Jacob. But either way, it seemed to indicate to them that Jacob could be found at the statue. Again, I can't really make all the pieces of this fit. Really I am just raising more questions.
Now, I have a way out theory I would like to share. I am not saying that I fully believe it, but it would be kind of cool. Ready-
JACOB IS CHARLOTTE'S SON!
Charlotte was left in ancient times because she died during the time flashes and her body was left behind. Her body was found by the Island's inhabitants, they did whatever it is they do and she came back to life. She joined their society, took a husband, had a son and named him Jacob (and taught him Korean). Maybe she was even perceived by the ancient people to be god-like because of her magical appearance as if from thin air and her knowledge of the Island and the future. This was how her son Jacob became their leader. Yes, I realize this is a big stretch, but Jacob does kind of look like Charlotte and could have learned Korean and much information about the future from his time traveling mother. Also it could explain how a fair skinned, blond haired, blue eyed man (not of Egyptian decent) lives surrounded by ancient Egyptian artifacts.
And here is one more random guess- the eye that was seen opening in the teaser for season 6, it's Jacob's eye. Why not?