Little Loose Ends

Lost is full of big mysteries. I mean, if I ever happen to meet someone who likes Lost and they find out that I happen to know a fair bit about it, you can guarantee they’ll ask me questions like: What’s the Black Smoke? Who is Jacob? What’s the significance of the four-toed statue? Why do dead people keeping showing up? What are The Whispers? Where is the Island? And so on. The big stuff, basically.

Thing is, I’m fairly sure we’re going to get our answers to those questions. Probably they’ll be a crushing disappointment, too, but that’s by the by. What’s rattling around my brain are some of the smaller, perhaps even overlooked, mysteries. The answers to questions no one ever asks.

Let’s start off with a classic. What do The Others call themselves?

I’ll be honest, this used to worry me right around the time of Season 3, when we were starting to spend more and more time with The Others. The very definition of their collective name the others is based around the principle of their being apart and unknown. The more familiar they become the harder it becomes to define them as “others”. Luckily Season 3 and onwards has so far managed to preserve the title of “Others” on this group of Island dwellers by completely not having any of them talk about what they call themselves.

The question still remains, though. What do they call themselves? When they’re sticking posters up around The Barracks advertising the latest group meeting, what do they define the group as? Jacobites? Islanders? Junglists? Goodies (as in Ben’s affirmation that they’re “the good guys”)?

When this guy. . .

. . . introduces himself how does he finish, “Hi, I’m Ricky Alpert, I’m a. . .” This is definitely need-to-know information. How The Others define themselves ought to shed a great deal of light on what they are doing on the Island, so Season 6 better cough up an answer.

And speaking of The Others, what’s the deal with this chick?

I think we’re all agreed she probably wasn’t in with The Others before the crash of Oceanic. (Although those mad bastards Ilana and her team all happily crashed on the Island so maybe that certainty isn’t so certain after all.) And yet The Others snatched Cindy away and then she turned up all glowing and chilled out and talking about how she’s there to watch.

I want the reasoning behind that statement qualified. I want to find out whatever it was Cindy found out that quickly made her decide that the people that had been terrorising her before kidnapping her were actually an OK bunch and worth hanging around with.

I also mentioned Ilana, so it’s worth flagging up this question mark:

WTF? You’d wonder if it was some kind of flesh-searing burning incident, but she doesn’t bear any scars. So either Jacob healed her (despite tellingly never touching her in the scene where they met) or the bandages covered injuries that weren’t permanent.

If all these questions feel a tad too relevant, dare I even say essential, let’s throw out some real zingers likely to produce a shrug of the shoulders and a miffed expression. Like what was “the Tampa Job” that Sawyer and Hibbs were involved in that created such a rift between them?

And how did that small Beechcraft from Africa end up on the Island?

And how did Hurley get the nickname ‘Hurley’?

And when he once claimed to Walt that he was known as “something of a warrior” back home what the hell did he mean? Because Hurley and warrior are not two things that go together at all.

And was this mofo psychic or not!?

And what about Ms. Hawking? Did she actually work in that jeweller’s shop?

Or did she get a job there when she realised Desmond’s consciousness had flipped back to his own history and he was going to go and buy a ring in this version of events and she needed to be there to make sure he didn’t? (Insert brain meltdown here.)

And speaking of Desmond, what did he do to end up in prison?

Sure, it was a military prison but a prison none-the-less and he got put there for not following orders. But for some reason it seemed to give Widmore the right to call Desmond a “coward”. And considering fathers that have been somewhat rough on their prospective son-in-laws, how about Mr. Paik and Jin? What was the meaning behind sending Jin off to deliver those bloody gold watches around the world?

Fanciful theories have suggested the gold watches have a tracking signal inside which would allow Paik to pinpoint the location of the Island that he knew Jin was going to crash land on! Madness, I tells ya! Madness!

But then Lost and all its infernal questions will make you mad. Perhaps the biggest ‘small’ question for me is that perennial chestnut I always tend to keep coming back to: What’s the deal with the Swan Station computer?

Why the hell did Dharma make people enter a code rather than just automate the ‘venting’ of the electromagnetism? I’ve speculated elsewhere that it was a means of conducting further psychological experimentation, but it’s pure speculation. And what was with the hieroglyphs? Just another form of the psychological test, to panic the participants into thinking something terrible would happen if they didn’t push the button?

Trouble being, of course, that something terrible does happen!

Don’t even get me started on the head-banging, elbow-gnawing infuriation of trying to work out what would have happened had Desmond not turned the Fail Safe. . .

And how come Dharma were broadcasting ‘the numbers’ from the radio tower on a loop? When ‘the numbers’ were heard recently (Season 5, episode The Little Prince) there was the suggestion that it was Hurley’s voice reading them out! So whilst we’re on the matter of why broadcast ‘the numbers’, the identity of the man whose voice recites them could also use some clarification!

The list goes on, and if you happen to have some little questions that remain unanswered I’d be amused enough to hear about them. I might even try and answer them because, let’s face it, we’re probably never going to get a proper answer to most of them so I’m unlikely to run the risk of being proved wrong!


Anonymous said...

Hurley bird?

& Hurley's bird?

Anonymous said...

Great entry! To me, it's the small mysteries that keep each episode intriguing so I'm glad you listed some "small" questions. Here's one of my big "small" questions:

Who is the "him" Desmond and Kelvin Inman ask about when they meet a stranger at the Swan station? They both ask, "Are you him?"

Who knows the answer to the riddle, "What did one snowman say to the other?"

I hope that with some time travel plot device we revisit the beginning of season two. It's the scene with Locke and Kate in the Swan when they first meet Desmond. This time when Desmond asks the code riddle, Locke knows the answer.

That's my own answer to my "small" question. I'd enjoy hearing your take on who is "him."


egg said...

tc, the answer to the snowman riddle is "smells like carrots".

walt, walt, bloody walt! he can cause birds to smash into windows, he's exceptionally lucky and can throw knives like a champion... then the others kidnap him to conduct experiments and end up giving him back (BECAUSE THEY'RE TOO SCARED OF HIS AWESOME MIND POWERS!!!) but we don't need to know about that. no explanation required.

*sigh* i really am bitter about walt.

AngeloComet said...

Anonymous - Ha! YES! That damn Hurleybird! What in God's name WAS that green-eagle thing! (And did it speak Hurley's name!?)

TC - Totally. A clear-cut explanation about the events that lead to the likes of Radzinsky and Inman in The Swan, and that peculiar "Are you him?" question would be welcome.

Egg - The knife-throwing and bird killing I can get around. . . but the turning up, dripping wet, speaking backwards and disappearing again? That needs addressing!

Corellian said...

- Walt, can´t even remember how many times i´ve complained on this blog about the lack of informations on Walt...

- Not only Walt, but also what is up with Aaron. Why is he so special, why does he had to be raised my Claire...

- About Dharma Station, not only why the computer, but also why those numbers! We've seen they putting the numbers on the Hatch's door, as if they were only mere serial numbers. So long for Valenzetti equations. So, why using them?

- Who was shooting Locke and Cia when they were at the canoe on the time of the time flashes.

- Two words: Food drops.

- Why Miles and hurley (and not the other ocean's six) have the dead related powers

Anonymous said...

I would really like to know what ever happened to Sullivan. The guy just turns up out of the blue complaining to Jack about his rash, he plays a little golf and then just as fast as he appears he is never seen or mentioned again...

The poor guy has probably been wondering the jungle looking for aloe, playing with dolls and being chased by polar bears.

Anonymous said...

^^ Nevermind... I just read on Lostpedia that along with Frogart and Steve Jenkins, Sullivan is said to be one of the flaming arrow casualties in the 1954 timeline.

How convenient!!! LOL!

Anonymous said...

Here are three characters and stories are that I feel have concluded but I would like too know more bout.

1. What is the point of Rousseau and her story. I realize that Rousseau had some useless information and gave directions to the Radio Tower. But that was it. You can throw Alex, Carl and Henry Gale in with this one.

2. What about Walt? They got to give us more.

3. I wish we could get some more Libby story and I think that we might. There was something interesting too this story that was building. She wasn't one of my favorite characters but Hurley and Desmond are and since she was instrumental in these stories it's got me curious.

Fred said...

Some answers to your Questions:

(1) The Others call themselves "Latinos" from the language they speak.
(2) Cindy joined the Others, sorry Latinos, because of the Health Care package--even if you die, you come back
(3) Ilana--again, Health Care package (need I say more).
(4) Tampa job--GM Hummers made for Horatio Cane of CSI Miami.
(5) Beechcraft--Area 51 experiments. Sorry, got nothing.
(6) Hurley--easy, he's got a bit of the Irish in him, just like us all on St. Patrick's.
(7) Ms. Hawking? Jeweller's shop, I thought it was more a clock shop, like Sylar in Heroes. Maybe she's Sylar's adoptive mum.

What I want to know is Scott/Steve. Which is which? And what do they do? And where are Shannon's inhalers? And what operating system ran the computer? DOS or Mac? Or did they rig up their own system? It sure didn't seem to crash like mine does every week.

Corellian said...

Henry Gale, good call. Doesn't have influence on absolutelly nothing, but it would have been nice to see him falling on the Island during one of the time flashes on the beginning of season 5...

Anonymous said...

The Others called themselves 'The Good Guys'.

AngeloComet said...

So many more good ones. Food drops! That was an obvious one - should have included it in the post, for sure. And the story of the real Henry Gale would be good. A whole episode would work for that! It would be tragic. And, for sure, we better find out who was shooting at Locke and Sawyer and the rest from the other canoe. (Unless we're supposed to just assume it was Ilana and Bram. . .?)

Fred/Anonymous - I can't decide which is funnier: 'Latinos' or 'The Good Guys'. Both sound like great titles for sit-coms.

Shannon's inhalers; not only where they are, but WHO TOOK THEM? (To be fair, Jorge Garcia raised that point at Comic-Con '09, but it was a good point worth reiterating.)

I'm also seeking clarification on how the polar bears got from Hydra Island to Main Island. Probably on a canoe, of course, but it'd be good to get that confirmed!

(Don't laugh - there are people that think those polar bears were trained to turn the frickin' donkey wheel so canoeing is a piece of cake for those Einsteins of the animal kingdom.)

If you've got more, keep 'em coming.

Corellian said...

What the hell happenned to the submarine/Why was Locke all wet after exploding it...

Anonymous said...

Why had Charlie never heard of any of the musicians on the records in the hatch and who was Geronimo Jackson.

Was there a reason ever given as to why the Marvin Candle info video reel was split and sent to different sides of the island?

Was there a reason the others/latinos/good guys wore false beards and shabby clothes when visiting the main island.

On the polar bears, i seen a documentary about the ice caps melting, those guys can swim for hours.

Anonymous said...

What about the weird Funeral for Danny Pickett.

Remember, They were are all dressed in white and pushed Pickett's body out too sea.
. I believe it is 'Not in Portland' that these events take place.

They brought Jack and Juliet down together too witness the Funeral. Juliet was the one who shot Pickett.

Whats up with the Hydra Station?

AngeloComet said...

The question about what the meaning of the white-robed funeral ceremony was all about is definitely a good one, though the Lost geek in me has to point out that it was Colleen's funeral, not Pickett's. (Inexplicably, Pickett seemed to blame sawyer for Colleen's death, despite the fact that it was Sun who shot her when Sawyer was IN A CAGE on A DIFFERENT ISLAND.)

And yeah, splitting the Orientation film and The Bible with the glass eye. . . in fact, everything to do with The Arrow could use some illumination.

glf said...

Hi - I just found your blog - mucho excellento.
, congratulations. Please keep up the good work.

Others? Reminder that they've also been referred to as 'The Hostiles' haven't they - which alludes that they are like island natives, doesn't it? Mind you for quite a while people speculated that there were two groups Others and Hostiles/Natives but it appears now (after seeing them in 1954 in S5 looking quite 'native') they are the same group.

Swan station: I've been rewatching S2 recently and in particular when Locke discovered the Pearl. He assumed of course that Swan people were the psych experiment but it seems more clearly to me now that those in the Pearl were being tested for their capability to undergo mindless round the clock tasks and ultimately their capability to man a station (in particular the Swan)??
Also why have people enter the numbers - to ensure that it is done! Just setting up an automatic system would have been less reliable. You couldn't set it up and then go away. You keep the people there by making them think that going outside will make you sick. And in the end DI have more psych experiment material. Remember Ben said that DI was essentially 'stupid psychological tests/experiments'.
Anyhow these conclusions have 'sorted' the people in the Swan station out for me, may not for others but for me that's one less unanswered question.

Anonymous said...

I know deleted scenes are not considered canon but, in one of the deleted scenes for Expose Paolo is shown walking through the jungle, he spots something on the ground, he bends down and picks it up, he looks at it, then he tosses it. It was one of Shannon's inhalers.

Well anyway, I thought it was a pretty funny scene and worth keeping in the final cut...

Anonymous said...

Nice catch on the white-robed funeral. My bad. I guess that is a good example of how sometimes facts get messed up on the net. I went back and watched it and it's still a weird scene too me. I don't remember any other time we saw this sort of funeral on the Island. And the weird song they played in the background "I Wonder" by Brenda Lee released in 1963. These are the type of things that I get stuck on. Anyway sorry bout that

Anonymous said...

Whatever happened to Annie?

Corellian said...

Annie, well remembered... Haven´t the writers said once that Annie would be an important part of the plot? As well as the Island's vulcan...

AngeloComet said...

Corellian - I'm sure you won't mind me picking up on "vulcan" and figuring you meant 'volcano' (unless Leonard Nimoy, as well as cameo-Fringe duties is heading for the Island as well!). And yeah, it was said to be a piece of the puzzle that has so far yielded zip.

Same goes with Annie who is surely a crucial element in Ben's upbringing and you would have thought ought to have been around in Season 5. Two great loose ends there.

Anonymous - No worries on the funeral thing. Over a hundred episodes over five years. . . there are bound to be detailm we can't keep balanced in our memory!

Glf - Welcome to my humble Lost nest. 'Hostiles' eh? Well, that was term prescribed to them by Dharma people. In short, it's what other people have called The Others. But it doesn't answer what The Others call themselves!

There's something in your take of The Swan computer though. Making it manual to insure the task was done. . . If we assume it was set up with Dharma assuming they would be around to intervene. . . Yeah, that's not a bad way of looking at it.

Anonymous said...

How did Christian Shepherd actually die? It is hardly likely that it was from consumption.

Anonymous said...

Forgot which episode it was but... When Ben is trying to get all of the losties back to the island, he and Jack are in the motel room. They showed Ben retrieving a box from the air duct. What was in that box?

Corellian said...

The diferent coordinates given by Ben (to Michael) and by Faraday to get out of the Island...

Anonymous said...

Have you ever noticed when John Locke meets Widmore after he returns from the island. Widmore is telling him how the Oceanic 6 can be found and what they are up to.

He shows Locke a photo of Sayid wearing yellow t-shirt and jeans working on a section of roof. John finds Sayid a few days later, he is still wearing the same clothes and working on the same bit of roof. What a fckin slacker.

Anonymous said...

What is the War that is coming? Widmore said that there is a 'War' coming and that Lockester must be on the right side.

When I think of War I think of Countries or large groups battling. Now I cant imagine a War on the Island in the sense that I think of War. Could it be a spiritual War or a High Sea War?

Ever since Widmore brought it up I've been curious what War is coming.

glf said...

Hi back - re Others name - In my roundabout way I think I was trying to say that I have a feeling that hostiles=natives is all we’ll get. We’ve been told they are the descendants (well sort of but that's another story) of the ongoing natives/protectors of the island - full stop.

Looking forward to your next post.
PS I especially like your rants – big cheer for the one re the S5 ComicCon precursor – I too waited all of S5 for some (or even just a teeny-tiny) follow-on. Still what did I expect after the lamest follow on from the magnificient edgy spooky (you tricked me into leaving the island) scene in S4 between Ben & Widmore - waaaaaa – ended up he was tied up and sent off in a sub – didn’t look anything like being ‘tricked’ at all. Darlton I will never forgive you for that one.

Five said...

Hey! Remember me Fivestades from the old LT, I'm still banging on about Eyeballs and surveillance.

Nice blog.

I have a loose end that absolutely needs an explanation......

S04E02 Confirmed Dead. Miles enters Mr's Gardners house with his little hoover.......the picture frames and pictures on the stairs change after he has done his ghost busting thing upstairs.


AngeloComet said...

Well, so many good comments and loose ends it's probably worth compiling and addressing in a new post.

That and Uncharted 2 on Playstation has pretty much stifled any inspiration for new posts!

Five - I do remember you and those crackpot theories of yours (although you did have some good ones, too). Were you the one that speculated the Island wasn't in the ocean but really on a big lake or something!? :o) Nearly as nuts as that eyeball surveillance theory!

Corellian said...

The surveillance theory was that one about the birds beeing "flying cameras"? Hahhahaah, Lost Theories was as fun as it gets...

Anonymous said...

Oh, I remember the bird being the surveillance camera one.

That was one of my fave theories of all time heh, heh. There were diagrams, blueprints, specs and everything!!

Five said...

Yes! the lake! I'd tried to forget about that one. But as far as the eyeballs, birds & surveillance go.....I'm still hopeful.

I miss LT every day (is that wrong?) and have not found anywhere else to lay my hat.

Anyway, writing a new surveillance theory......will let you know!

Miss you all. Angelo, again, love your blog.

Five said...


And another loose end.....

Gary Troup, he possesses so much info, I'm hoping we'll hear his story soon. It would be a nice touch if the man who was promptly sucked into the turbine turns out to be the man with all the answers.

jojo said...

What about Jack's tattoos! What's up with that?! And Jack in Tahiti?

(btw, great blog!)