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I think the Smoke Monster is probably one of my biggest questions about Lost. As it is a mysterious flowing body of black smoke, it can be quite confusing. How does it work? Is it alive? Does someone or something control it? What is it guarding? I'm going to try and throw up a few answers on questions about this crazy creature. If others have ideas, please feel free to contribute!
We know that the Island has very... interesting magnet properties on the island. We've seen what happens at the Swan station, its enough force to make the entire thing implode into non-existence. When electricity is applied to magnets, the force is almost exponentially expanded. We have seen inside the Smoke monster on numerous occasions, the first being in Season 2 "The 23rd Psalm" when Mr. Eko stares the ghostly ghoul down. Eko, on impulse, tells Charlie to climb a tree to get a better view of the jungle, hoping to find the Beachcraft. Thats when it happens. Sounds started playing in Eko's head. Random sounds, clanks, motors turning, a steam horn... I don't believe any of those sounds are justifiably real. Crazy? Sure, but real? No. When we see what the Smoke Monster is, as the camera pans through it, is a black powder condensed in flowing air currents, and bright white flashes that look like lightning. I'm going to take that lightning and run with it, because if there is truly electricity flowing in the Smoke Monster, then it is real and alive. It is an entity that exists, and uses/moves energy just like the rest of us. If it can think or not, and what determines it's targets is most likely located in the Temple. I would assume in Season six we're all going to enjoy a nice backstory about the Temple. I'm also assuming that this backstory includes details about the Smoke Monster, considering the Monster is a security system: guarding it.
So here is the meat & potatoes of my post. I've heard theories about the Smoke Monster and the one I find most credible is that it is a floating source of electromagnet energy. The black smoke is metal fillement, which is can manipulate as it wants. Because of its consistency, the monster can influence things that have electric or magnet properties. When I learned that I immediately thought of the human brain. All our minds are, are just a series of electric impulses sent through different parts of the brain, so we can recognize things like speech, and patterns. Welp, since we're getting into the realm of mental manipulation, it isn't too far fetched to assume that something that could control and defy magnetic and electric properties could influence something like the human brain.
And thats where the sounds come in, when it approaches, we hear what we interpret as just noise, when in fact to the astute (some of the characters certainly aren't) we can characterize as the Smoke Monster. These are imaginary. The signals being emitted by the monster confuse the signals in our brain, and since the monster appears dominant on the island, it can dominate our brain. It can see our past, read our memories, and control seen images, people, things. This has evidence from the show too numerous to name, but some are like Kate's Horse, Yemi, Walt, etc. So much can it control and read our brain that when this black filament surrounds you, it has the capability to erase reality and superimpose it's own onto your vision, evidence: Ben.
That is what I believe the Smoke Monster to be. In essence, a flowing cloud of smoke controlled by something located in the Temple. It can be called through the various vents for it located on the Island built by the creators of the Temple.
As for controlling Images of dead bodies? Sure, if the above analysis is true, then yes, something like a dead body just might be a perfect candidate for mischievous fun.
Let me know what you all think!