So for the last week, I’ve been slowly building towards this week’s edition of "Theory Thursdays." Each Thursday, I’ll be examining one of the "big" Lost questions, or trying to pose one of my own. This week’s edition falls into the latter category.
Everything that follows is speculation, and based on as little actual fact as possible, but that’s OK. In this seemingly interminable break between Seasons 3 and 4 of Lost, when even the Season 3 DVD seems impossibly far away from release, it’s easy to grasp at straws here in search of new and exciting tidbits about the show. So here’s the question I’d like to pose this week:
Is JJ Abrams making an as yet untitled Lost movie as we speak?
And yea, untitled. As in, they haven’t even given us the name of the movie yet. Just a release date: 1-18-08. And a trailer. And a creeptastic website. (And hey, maybe that’s the actual title of the movie. That would be pretty interesting, although really hard to inject into conversation. Much easier to say, "Hey, seen ‘Blair Witch’ yet?" than "Hey, seen ‘1-18-08’ yet?")
What seems like some boring indie flick turns into a ginormous, action-packed, holy-crap-New-York-is-exploding flick in the manner of 30 seconds. For many, the 9/11 parallels may be a bit too strong, but I’d like to ignore that angle for now (while recognizing that it’s inevitably in play) and focus on just what about this trailer makes me think it’s related to Lost.
Take JJ Abrams’ involvement, first of all. He’s shown us to be someone who likes his work exist in a parallel world to ours, sort of like an Earth-2 in comics, only in this case it’s like Earth-JJ. Earth-JJ inhabits just about everything he’s done since Alias, and includes Lost and even "Mission: Impossible 3." After all, the latter features a building with the Paik Heavy Industries logo on it. And in Season 5 of Alias, Sydney Bristow plays a Driveshaft album at a party. Much in the way that Quentin Tarantino’s created a self-contained, similar-but-heightened world within his body of work, JJ Abrams has done so as well. His mere involvement makes one wonder.
Secondly, the writer on this movie is Drew Goddard, who got wet writing in other self-contained world known as the Whedon-verse. After Goddard cut his teeth on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel, Abrams scooped him up first for Alias, and eventually moving him over to Lost. Goddard’s…well, a god as far as I’m concerned. His first Buffy script, entitled "Selfless," is blippin’ brilliant, and his follow-up, "Conversations with Dead People," was so good that people though Joss ghost-wrote it. In Season 3 of Lost, Goddard inherited a lot of the integral Locke storyline, and stepped up with episodes like "The Man From Tallahassee." He’s in a position to know the mythology of Lost fairly well, has a great reputation as a writer, and clearly in a position of trust with Abrams.
Now, with all that set up, let’s look at the trailer itself for clues.
I think the first thing to key in on, once the you-know-what starts to hit the fan, is Rob’s reaction. While everyone is worried/concerned about the mini-earthquake, Rob is instantly worried in a way that makes him stand out. He’s running his fingers through his hair, looking for an escape route, seemingly. It makes you wonder why he’s leaving for Japan in the first place. Maybe, just maybe, he works for the Widmore Corporation, he’s low-level, he has an idealism that’s been eroded in his time there, and knew his mission in Japan is related to the events at hand. (Or, to escape from the events he thought would play out at a later date.)
The second thing to key on, clearly, is the sound of the "monster" coming from the heart of the city. It sounds a lot, a LOT, like Smokey. Enough to warrant a discussion. While there’s far from a definitive working theory on what exactly Smokey even is, what if it got off the island? Would it be impotent? Or one hundred times more powerful? And if the Widmore Corporation thought it could wield it, only to have it escape…well, you might have something like the ball of exploding light we see halfway through the trailer.
Thirdly, the head of the Statue of Liberty being knocked around like a pinball is freakish, to be sure, but also calls to mind another statue: the statue with four toes on the island. We know that the statue was one enormous, but we don’t know where it went. Could Smokey have taken it down?
Fourth: look at the date of the movie. 1-18-08. Add them up? You get 27. You also get 27 when you take 4 and 23, two of the numbers in the Valenzetti Equation, and add them together. Subtracting 15 from 42, two more of the numbers of the equation, also yields you 27.
Take ALL of this, and you have this even wilder theory:
It’s not a movie that features anyone we know in Lost, but exists within Earth-JJ, a place in which the Island, Smokey, Paik Heavy Industries, the Hanso Foundation and Oceanic Airlines all actually exist. And this movie, therefore, is ultimately about what messed Jack up enough to turn into Grizzly Freakin’ Adams after their rescue.
Think about it: if you thought you were responsible for the destruction of New York City, you’d be kind of a mess too, right? You’d try to do anything to fix it. Even, say, hop on every flight you could using your Oceanic Golden pass in order to go back and time and keep Smokey on that island.
As such, what we saw at the end of Season 3 of Lost could in fact take place in 2008, after the events of 1-18-08, with this film serving as a literal lead-in to Season 4, which starts a little less than a month after the release of this film. It shows just how catastrophic the takeover of the Island by the Widmore Corporation was, and just why Jack is so determined to right his wrongs. Jack’s plan, thus, is to somehow rewrite history, prevent Widmore from taking over the Island, and thus saving not only New York City, but the entire world.
Thoughts? Theories? Straightjackets to take me away, ha ha, to the funny farm? Leave them below.
Ryan also posts every 108 minutes over at Boob Tube Dude.