Longwinded discussion about physics, what I think the show holds for next season, and a bit of religion and philosophy. It’s about 800 words so I moretagged it.
I know how some of you feel about President Bush. While I may disagree with you on many counts, I often find some sense in what you say. But believe me, he isn’t the worst leader. Jack is. After kvetching for years about getting off the Island, he now has to drag everyone back.
The producers said in an interview with EW that they were taking a cue from J.K. Rowling. In the same way that she set the majority of the last Harry Potter book outside Hogwarts, they plan to change the setting and focus of the last season. I gather that the new focus is going to be first getting all the Oceanic Six Plus Corpse back on board with venturing down the rabbit hole. Then once that’s done, we’ll try out some of Ben’s ideas. Look for plenty more vacillation there as well. One week Hurley will be in, the next he’ll be out. Etcetera. That’s probably going to be the bulk of their dramatic tension. I think the writers are hoping that we’ll be so wrapped up with “Will Kate agree to go back?!” that we’ll have forgotten things like the Smoke Monster.
Speaking of forgetting things…I’m a lousy philosophy student. I spent the entire episode assuming that the “Jeremy Bentham” character was Ben. I did know it was a philosopher’s name, so I should have clued in that it was Locke’s alias. But no. That round went to the Husband, who was pretty sure it was Locke all along.
The funny thing about having “Jeremy Bentham” be Locke’s alias is that they were both British philsophers concerned with the idea of individual rights. Which is odd, considering that the Locke/Bentham character on the show is very much the antithesis of individual rights. Jack doesn’t have a choice. He has to do what Locke/Bentham/The Island tell him to do. It’s odd having a character named after some of the most prominent individual rights philosophers be the beacon of subsumation of the personal will to a higher good.
In that instance, the particular brand of Catholicism espoused by several of the show’s creators shines through. Free Will is the greatest conundrum of Christianity; we believe that we’ve been granted it, but according to the faith there is such a thing as a “wrong” choice. The overriding theme of the show now seems to be about using one’s free will responsibly. While it’s interesting to ponder over coffee at IHOP just after your finals are over, it makes for a marginally less entertaining show than finding out what the smoke monster is.
I imagine, based on their mention of The Casimir Effect that the smoke monster is going to be some type of uniquely controlled Exotic Matter. Now, I’m not a physicist by any stretch of the imagination, although I do wish I had the brain power to be one. I’d love to try to explain the Casimir Effect and Exotic Matter, but I’m afraid that physicists will laugh at me. So if you are one of the few physicists who read my blog (I know there are at least two), then step in and correct me.
My understanding of the Casimir Effect–simplified for us non-physics geeks–is that in a vacuum two metal plates can generate unseen energy that reacts against Exotic Matter. Exotic Matter is a collection of particles with unique chemical properties unlike anything else on earth. Because the Casimir Effect generates a particular kind of unique energy, it can theoretically stabilise a wormhole.
To oversimplify even further: The Island sits on top of a door that leads through space and/or time. The Casimir Effect is a sort of door stop that props that door open and allows the entire Island to move to another point in both space and time.
Now, why any of these people are crucial to the operation and survival of the place is another question altogether.
Newscoma said a couple of weeks ago something to the effect that she wasn’t sure if I liked the show or not. I guess the best way to explain it is that I like the show right up until the parts I don’t like at all. If I had my way we’d spend a lot more time answering the metaphysical questions and a lot less time blowing things up, kissing and fighting over who gets to hold the gun.
1. Jin is not dead.
2. Sawyer and the Juliet will fall in love and make a beautiful blonde baby which will increase the drama because Juliet knows she must get off the island or die.
3. Sun will work with Charles Whitmore tirelessly, find out that Jin is still alive and realise that she is ironically jeopardising him in her attempt to get revenge for his death.