L O S T WITH AS I LAY DYING’S NICK HIPA: SIMILARITIES, DIFFERENCES, AND QUESTIONS ABOUT THE TWO TIMELINES
Virtually every Sayid episode we’ve ever seen has delved into some form of his past and inner gnarliness, so it only makes sense that last week’s “Sundown” blasted us with all sorts of action, violence, and brutality. Viewing the episode for substance, though, we were only handed little nuggets of answers to some very minor questions (Who is Dogen?) in exchange for even more: how was Dogen the only thing keeping Nemesis out? Why couldn’t Nemesis be killed by stabbing when Jacob can/was? How can Nemesis give people “anything they want in the entire world?” These are the freshest of mysteries which I’m fine with keeping on the back burner (for now) to get into the more crucial topic of the timelines.
With the flash-sideways of Sayid’s life, the alternate timeline has remained consistent with the kinda-consistent-to-the-OT-facts direction it has been taking since its introduction at LA-X. In both timelines, Sayid was an interrogator in the Iraqi Republican Guard and holds his love interest Nadia as “the most important thing to him in the world.” The OT inconsistency here is that in the ALT Nadia is unobtainable to him as she is actually the wife of his brother. Here are a few more examples of characters with the standout details of their past as we know it in the OT being similar but slightly different in the ALT:
Similarities: Hurley is a gazillionaire for winning the lottery.
Differences: He regards himself as “the luckiest man alive,” which is a stark contrast to the miserably unlucky character who won by playing what he felt were the cursed Valenzetti numbers.
Questions: What is the source of Hurley’s luck? Did he play the same numbers?
Similarities: Paralyzed dude who leaves for a Walkabout in Australia only to be turned away.
Differences: A picture of Locke and his father on a hunting trip (not in the OT) insinuates that he might have a normal, functioning relationship with his father. The fact that Helen is still with him and is actually his fiancee indicates that Locke’s obsession with stalking and aiding his father in the OT was never an issue or catalyst to what eventually became Helen leaving him.
Questions: What caused Locke’s paralysis then? What exactly is the status of the relationship with his father?
Similarities: A fugitive from the law who was captured in Australia and en route back to the states under the custody of Edward Mars.
Differences: Nature of her crime is still not revealed, but she asks if Claire would “Believe me if I said I was innocent?” This does not prove that she is innocent, although the door is still open that the circumstances for her arrest could be entirely different (i.e., she never killed her father).
Similarities: Sun and Jin are traveling to America on behalf of Jin’s business, which we are led to believe has something to do with him delivering the same watch as in the OT. The beefy wad of cash is pretty suspicious too, which leads me to believe he’s still doing sketchy dirty work.
Differences: Sun is referred to as Ms. Paik and neither of the two are wearing wedding bands. The assumption made from this is that the two are not yet married. Also, Sun indicates she does not speak English; the validity of this statement hasn’t absolutely been confirmed.
Questions: If they are not married, how would Jin be in the same line of business? What then would the status of their relationship be?
Similarities: Jack is a successful surgeon with a deep seeded resentment for his father’s “you don’t have what it takes” method of parenting. He was aboard flight 815 for the same reason, which was to transport his dead father’s body back home.
Difference: He has a son named David.
Question: Who is David’s mother?
Similarity: Still a douche bag.
The jury is still out whether or not Jack is a father in the original timeline as well, but I haven’t ruled it out yet, seeing as how the two timelines look like blurry mirrors of each other (possibly to reinforce the notion of fate?). On the topic of both mirroring each other, one of you (yetzer hara) mentioned last week that the love triangle between Sawyer, Jack, and Juliet is very likely to reveal itself in the alternate timeline as well. I back this and think it could come across as making sense if Juliet turns out to be David’s mother; but – as fate would have it – her relationship with Jack hadn’t work out (similar to the brief and short lived romantic interest they shared in Season 4) and she ends up crossing paths with Sawyer (perhaps coffee?) in the short alternate future. If this were to unfold, I think it could make the possibility of David existing in the regular timeline less likely, as that could be the one difference to an otherwise accurately echoed life of Jack in both.
The past several weeks I’ve been bombarding you all with my conjectures on what I consider to be the shows most relevant issues: the alternate timeline, Jacob vs. Nemesis, and how our main characters fit into them. I’m going to take it easy on trying to further define the relationship between Jacob and Nemesis today, as we were given more of an entertaining physical escalation of the conflict in “Sundown” at the expense of not receiving info that hasn’t already been speculated upon before. In spite of me laying the incongruities of the two timelines out earlier, the question of how they will be reconciled remains unanswered. I’ve scoured the world wide web for hours upon hours reading various timeline theories, but haven’t really come across anything super tits yet. The record theory is pretty rad, and so is this thread discussing the possibility that the each timeline now exists with a direct relationship to the other, but both still have huge gaping holes in consistency to the facts. Lostpedia goes into the latter briefly as well, with a theory that Nemesis is actually aware of/associated with the alternate timeline and, as a result, uses that as leverage for making offers to our Losties to join him. Nothing I’ve stumbled upon has completely clicked, though; and so for today, I have no qualms with saying “I’ve got nothing.” A lot of you are on point with your L O S T, so if you have any head’s up info, ideas, or links that deal with the question of “What is the relevance of our new timeline to our original one, and how will they be reunited?”, I’d be grateful to have you share them.
If you haven’t checked out the preview for “Dr. Linus” yet, please do so ASAP. They’re alluding in the sneak peek that he’s possibly gunna get it and Nemesis is gunna give it to him. There’s also a scene of Ben in the ALT lecturing his class on the topic of Napolean, and what he’s saying sounding like a reasonable allusion to what the character of MIB has gone through. Ben is up there with Richard Alpert in terms of actually knowing what’s going on, so in the same way we could all assume that there was going to be violence with Sayid, we should feel pretty good about getting some inside island insight tonight!
As I Lay Dying’s new album, The Powerless Rise, will be out this spring on Metal Blade. While you’re awaiting its release, why not get L O S T on AILD’s MySpace page?