What They Died For/Theories

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The Mind Net

In the secret room of Ben's house, Locke, Zoe and Widmore get caught in the mind net:

LOCKE: "... And who might you be?"
ZOE: "Zoe. My name is Zoe. I--"
WIDMORE: "Don't talk to him. Don't say anything."
[Locke cuts Zoe's throat with his knife - Widmore grabs her as she collapses to the floor.]
WIDMORE: "Why would you do that?"
LOCKE: "You told her not to talk to me. That made her pointless..." [1]

At first glance it seems Locke is solely responsible for Zoe's death. Another look reveals Widmore provoked the event. If Widmore had been concerned about Zoe he would have withheld his rash comment, especially realizing that the information he selfishly withheld would have to be revealed anyway when Locke inevitably threatened his daughter, Penny. Zoe's death was pointless. In Widmore's mind, her life was pointless, which Locke confirms when he tells Widmore, "You ... made her pointless".

- More on this theory -

Jacob's Loophole

  • Jack is Jacob's loophole. Jacob needs Jack to fix his mistake and to help MiB (FLocke) let go of his obsession with leaving the Island. This is mirrored in the FST with Jack trying to help Locke let go so he can fix his back.
    • Jacob also needs Jack to kill MiB in order to give MiB peace. Jacob regrets what he did to his twin brother but he can't kill MiB as Fake Mother made it that way. Killing MiB would involve throwing him into the Source/Light.
    • The FST is also a part of Jacob's loophole. Jacob changed the rules (i.e. his sideways move in the Senet game) so that the FST would be created after Jack kills MiB. (The FST is a flashforward. In the OT, a big showdown happens between MiB and Jack where MiB tries to slit Jack's throat creating the cut on Jack's neck in FST.) In the FST, more than one protector of the Island (at the bottom of the ocean) is allowed. Jacob created a new game with new rules as part of his loophole to find worthy people who would choose to help protect the Island in the FST instead of person doing it alone. Jacob picked the Losties because they were all like him - alone. In the FST, no one has to be alone.
    • Desmond is also part of Jacob's loophole. Because of his abilities, Desmond's task is to make sure the FST Losties remember the OT existed and to gather them to protect the Island together.

Jacob's Role as Protector

  • The protector is there to guard the source and keep men from taking it.
  • To date, one special man has touched the source, Jacob's Brother (i.e. MIB). After touching it we see the "fate worse than death". He somehow merges with the smoke monster, or the smoke monster assumes his personality while in human form.
  • Jacob stated his role is as a cork, where the bottle is the island. He told Richard that the smoke monster was what the bottle contained which was only partially true.
    • Actually, he said the island is a cork. The island is the cork which sits atop the Light, which is what must be protected.
    • Therefore when MiB/FLocke destroys the island the light would be released. The only way to stop MiB/Smoke Monster would be to kill him. This will be Jack's job as the new protector. Nothing says that "the protector" Cant kill MiB, Just that Jacob couldnt harm him (Across The Sea). Now Jack has adequate power to destroy him. This may fuse with FST during Locke's surgery.

So, Jacob failed in his initial role of protecting the source from men. Now, not only does he need to protect the source from men but he must also protect the source from leaving via the MIB. They can't kill each other and the MIB can't leave as long as there is a protector. MIB's loophole was getting somebody else to kill Jacob. Jacob is going to use the same loophole, though he is already dead. I don't think there is a stated rule that the protector can't kill the MIB, just that Jacob can't kill him.

There Is No Need for a Balance of Good and Evil

  • Jacob revealed to the remaining Losties that the Black Smoke can and needs to be destroyed. Jacob is either unable to kill it based on his mother's rules, or unwilling to harm his brother a second time, and instead tried to keep him on the island. MiB leaving the island would violate the mother's rules, but if MiB is destroyed, no person will be required to take his place to provide balance.
    • Actually, Jacob does not seem to know whether the Smoke Monster can be killed, stating that he hopes they can kill him.

Widmore & Ben ruse

  • Widmore and Ben are unable to kill each other. Their conversation in Widmore's bedroom in London tells us this. Off camera, the two agreed that if need be, shooting the other to make it appear as if they murdered him would be a clever ruse to deceive the MIB. MIB believes Widmore to be dead. The fact that he is not will pay off for team Ben/Widmore.
    • Widmore and Ben we're unable to kill each other simply because both knew the island would prevent it as they still had a role to play (Something they both know with absolute certainty). At this late stage Ben has Lost all faith in the island. He probably didn't know if he could kill Widmore but he had a shot (literally) and it appears the island is done with Widmore.
    • Yes, MIB would have certainly killed Widmore after he obtained the information he was seeking. Ben probably saved Widmore's life by inflicting wounds that he could not die from (due to the "rules").
      • Regardless, given what was at stake, Widmore probably provided misinformation to MIB.
  • Widmore specifically cues Ben to leave the room to allow Ben to reposition himself to shoot Widmore; they may have simply agreed that if Widmore was compromised, and was likely to divulge the plan, he was to be sacrificed
    • Or Widmore, knowing that the game was up, whispered to MiB misleading information, & Ben killed him to make that misinformation convincing.
  • Regardless of whether or not Ben really wanted to kill Widmore, he does appear to have a plan against the MIB. He took the walkie talkies from Widmore, showing that he assumed they would die, and gave one to Miles. Ben appears to have put up a false front to con the MIB while he really is not on his side
  • Ben planned to shoot Widmore, knowing he would not die, but he did not share the plan with Widmore. It's in his nature to manipulate, not collaborate. He assumes that Widmore will recover and put two and two together.
    • Ben knows that he can't kill someone if the Island is not done with them. He has shot someone before (i.e. Locke after visiting the Cabin) and known at the time that it was likely futile.
  • Ben could kill Widmore because now they are both on the Island, he could not kill him before because they were off the Island, and this is some kind of rule.
  • Ben was able to kill Widmore because the one who created the "rule", Jacob, is dead. Moreover, he did not only satisfy his personal vendetta, he also managed to gain MiB's trust while doing so. MiB deceived Ben to kill Jacob and now Ben killed Widmore to decieve MiB.
    • Jacob and MiB still couldn't kill each other long after Mother, the one who made it that way, died.

Widmore's backstage efforts

Widmore states that Jacob visited him after the Freighter blew up. That Jacob showed him the error of his ways and then gave him a purpose. Therefore Widmore has been assisting in the background more than expected.

  • We don't know how long after the Freighter blew up that Jacob visited him, but the fact he uses that as the marker in time (rather than the rescue of the Oceanic Six) would indicate it was very soon after the explosion, making just after 30th December 2004.
  • He would have been aware of and following the O6 from the moment they were rescued (Jan 7th 2005). This is why he had very detailed files on them for Locke in 2007.
    • Unknown if he knew Penny's part in the O6 rescue and fake story.
  • He knows to expect John Locke to arrive at the exit in Tunisia in December 2007, and has the camera set up. He did not expect Ben to arrive, so no camera was there in October 2005.
  • He doesn't put up much resistance when Desmond enters his office (also in December '07) and demands the address of Faraday's Mother. He knows that the O6 must be brought back together, and that he must follow the Ajira flight to find the Island with his Sub.
    • But he would not have given the address so readily unless he has already assisted John Locke and sent him off with Matthew Abaddon. So it is likely Desmond's visit is after John Locke's time trip.
  • He was already trying to assist the O6 and prep for his own group when approached by Sun in London (possibly a day after Locke died).
  • He was told of Desmond's abilities, so makes sure Desmond gets help after being shot by Ben at the Marina. Widmore is actually there at the hospital that night, yet he was in front of his own Widmore Corp building in London earlier that day when Ben calls to gloat about how he is about to kill Penny. We know that shortly after this, he takes Desmond from the hospital and brings him to the Island by Sub. Preparing a Sub and a crew with special equipment cannot be done quickly. He was prepared to jump when the time approached and events were forming up.

Ben is actively planning to betray Locke

  • Before letting Miles leave, he ensures he has a walkie talkie.
    • Ben can therefore set to transmit, allowing Miles to listen in on what is being planned.
      • Miles does know the Island pretty well - this episode made a point of reminding us that Miles spent 3 years in the Dharma Initiative in the '70s where he was part of Sawer's/LeFluer's security squad.
      • Plus, Miles has the bag with the C4!
      • Miles is the ONLY character who has not spoken to the smoke monster. According to the "rules", he is the only one eligible to kill him.
        • True, but Hurley spoke to the Monster before the Monster was able to speak. To both the Monster and Dogen, this is important.
      • Miles is Ben's loophole. Ben is not eligible to kill him because he's already spoken to him. He needs an assassin to do it, just like MiB needed Ben.
  • Before Widmore can tell Locke the details of why he needs Desmond, Ben kills him.
    • Except that Widomore gave Locke enough information.
  • Ben can inform Miles of the location of Widmore's body, and Miles will be able to learn from Widmore's last thoughts (as well as Zoe's) how Desmond can stop Locke.
    • Miles may also end up at the caves so may stumble upon more information by hearing the lasts thoughts of Mother and MiB's original form.
  • Flocke offered Ben the Island in return for killing the candidates, then turns round and says he wants to destroy the Island. Therefore, removing Ben's motivation for actively helping him.
  • Ben's desire was for power, not the Island itself. Locke's offer to give him the Island means nothing to him now, because the group he once led has been decimated.
    • "decimated" means "reduced by 10%"
    • No it was for the island itself. As Ben said "Imagine a big black box that will give you anything you want"
    • Ben doesn't want to rule an empty island like Napoleon on Elba during his exile.
      • In FST, Napoleon is repeatedly mentioned by Ben and even compared to Ben when he has a sling. Given the contrast between FST and OT, I think that it should be clear that Ben will not become like napoleon, so he won't get to rule the Island.
      • Exactly. The power Ben enjoys is the power over people.
  • Ben in OT is at a point where he seems calm again, like he knows what to expect, its not that he just gonna betray Flocke but he gonna try and ruin everyone's plan. If he believes he's doomed anyway he wants to kill everybody(like the true narcissist he is). If he cant have control then no one can! He's gonna be a wild card in the finally, helping who ever is winning the war at the moment.
  • At the beginning of the season (or ending of the last) Ben was apparently dismissed as irrelevant by Jacob ("What about you"?) However, he's always been Jacob's wildcard. He's been bouncing from group to group, unwanted, unneeded and purposeless, always clinging to the others' path almost as an afterthought. Taking in account that people apparently die when the Island is "done" with them, we had characters as relevant as Ilana and Richard die just after doing something for Ben: Ilana forgave him and convinced him not to join MiB and Richard took Ben to the barracks where he was bound to meet with Widmore and MiB. Perhaps Jacob knew that to beat someone as devious as MiB, someone equally devious would be useful. Whether Ben is going to participate in MiB's defeat by intently joining the side of good, or as part of his own personal schemes (a la Gollum) remains to be seen.

Warning to Claire was to keep her off the List

The seer did not know the details, but he could sense that being a mother would protect Claire from danger. If she had decided to keep the baby from the beginning, Claire could not have been a Candidate and thus would not have been led to the Island and the battle brewing there.

  • Interesting though that he was also the one that gave her the ticket to get on Oceanic. First he said for her to care for the baby, then sent her to L.A. to meet a family. Maybe the family was the O6.

Desmond and Readiness

  • Why Ana Lucia she part of Desmond's plan? The way I see it, there's three possibilities;

1) Perhaps she wasn't on Flight 815 in the FST. We know that's possible; Shannon wasn't on the flight in the FST. Desmond's mission only involves those who were on both versions of Flight 815. 2) Desmond is only concerned with Candidates or former Candidates. So far everyone he's "shown something to" or worked to "show something" to has had their name on the Candidate list. 3) Desmond has nothing to "show her" having never shared anything significant with the OT version of Ana Lucia.

  • The most likely reason is that the creators wanted to show Ana Lucia without having to bring her into the full story since she is not an important character. By having Desmond say "she isn't ready" its a simple plot device to fulfill this.
  • Desmond has manipulated quite a few things to get himself into the holding cell, then the paddy wagon with Kate and Sayid. In the recent Geronimo Jack's Beard podcast, Henry Ian Cusick confirmed that Desmond had orchestrated the escape. He obviously had to organize things before he went into the cell, as they took his phone. So he has already been working with Hurley and arranging some elements for the escape, and for what happens next.
    • Desmond may even have roped Sawyer into the act, getting all 3 prisoners moved at the same time.

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