Thursday, August 06, 2009


In navigating the interwebs, I've noticed major disagreement over how the principle of Course Correction (CC) relates to the rule of Whatever Happened, Happened (WHH).

I've always assumed they were related -- i.e., CC is the mechanism that enforces WHH. When someone deviates from whatever happened (e.g., Jack refusing to operate on Little Ben) the universe course corrects (e.g., Kate taking Little Ben to the Others) to prevent the future from changing in paradoxical ways. These small but consistent changes to the timeline could explain persistent mysteries like the changing picture frames at the home Miles visits in Confirmed Dead.

Here's the picture frame before Miles goes upstairs to bust the drug dealer's ghost:

And here's the new picture frame after Miles comes back down the stairs:

I was surprised to learn that others see CC and WHH as totally unrelated. Under their view, WHH precludes any changes to the past, even small ones, rendering CC irrelevant. When Daniel visited Desmond outside the Swan, that was what always happened -- Desmond's sudden recollection in the future was simply a storytelling device. Similarly, Desmond's meeting with Ms. Hawking in the jewelry store was what always happened -- Desmond just forgot.

So, what do you think Sickies? What is the relationship, if any, between WHH and CC?


Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Hey, Big. Way back when you were talking Chronal Protection Agents, I was thinking, no, LOST wouldn't take it that far. Then I saw how insightful you were, as on many other topics you were dead-on about months ahead of time. Then we saw how Eloise had Faraday's notebook, with that big page in red letters: IF ANYTHING EVER HAPPENS TO ME, DESMOND HUME IS MY CONTACT, underlining the last two words. So I came to see the Course Correction as more a non-physical thing instead of an Eloise-instigated thing. Because, after all, she had Faraday's notes from 1977-2007, and she knew as far back as 1995 that Desmond had some sort of role to play in future events, because her son mentioned him in 2007. Yes, it doesn't explain her with Father Campbell or how omniscient she seems to be, but I've always thought she was playing both sides of the chessboard, and maybe Jacob was giving her info. Tough call, but I still go with her interest in Desmond coming from the notebook.

I've been going along with Donnie Darko as I have mentioning the JFK story, but in both cases it seems free will allowed the tangent universe to become the real one that we know. Continued in a moment.

Nirjhar said...

What happens when Valenzetti Equation encounters Free Will?

I think Free Will is what will be able to change the VE.

Jacob says to Hurly, Ben that they have a CHOICE.

I think season 6 will deal with Free Will and Destiny.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

That's why I got on my idea that S1-S6 were the tangent universe. Actually, there's no reason to believe that the flashbacks we saw with Jacob were from the tangent universe, after all, a tangent might have something entirely different that is, well, different. In my thinking, in the tangent universe, Jughead went off in 1977. Maybe the whole idea to touch Kate and Sawyer and (I think) ACTUALLY put them on their respective paths as con man and idiot fugitive eye candy nutbag, was to put the final play of 77 in motion. As stupid as some moments of "The Incident" were, it all came down to that original triangle that were on 815. Sawyer needed to fall for Juliet, Jack had to decide to return to the Island because "he lost her" *gag* and Juliet had them turn the sub back because Sawyer looked at you-know-who. Everything played out so that Juliet was at the bottom of the Hatch to detonate the trigger. I know you guys are going to find holes in this, but there is some logic to it, too.

At one time, we thought Richard was the bomb. He knew everything. Now we know different. I'm thinking we were conned with Eloise, as well. Just as Desmond woke up with a new memory, there is no reason not to think Eloise was waking up with new memories, as well.

I don't even know if I've made a point or not. I guess I'm saying WHH in the tangent universe and the course correction might not be by Eloise, but by Jacob, or MIB, or even the Island itself. At one point, all of the key players (but for Juliet, who never left the Island after arriving in 2001) were on the Island before coming back, so maybe the Island's consciousness could exert influence. And Jacob was the tool to get each of them to have the free will that we've seen as the theme in the show. I dunno.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Big, delete the double post. I don't know how to do that.

I've been mentioning how MIB might be able to get off-Island, as well. I think he was Claire shouting at Kate to not bring Aaron back to the Island (unless the real warning was not to bring LOCKE back to the Island, which would totally screw up MIB's plans, as we've now seen). I think Kate seeing Claire IN REAL LIFE had two meanings, both Aaron and Locke. Was it MIB as Charlie that Hurley saw? Are there other examples? We didn't see Mr. Eko on screen, but we saw Charlie and Ana-Lucia. It wasn't just spookiness with Eko, I think there's a chance MIB was screwing around as much as Jacob, only MIB wasn't touching anyone. Just screwing with people's heads, not offering free will. And Libby was manifested by casual Christian when "Kevin Dawson" saw her the second time. Any other examples of MIB being all spooky off-Island?

So again with my pet theory, Jacob and MIB cannot see the past, present, and future. They can see the various tangent universes of 1977-2007. So, when Jacob mentions progress in the shadow of Tarawet, he means course correction. In terms of "progress" on MIB's part, all it means to him is killing Jacob and ensuring that the Omega Point doesn't happen and that we all die. Why he wants us dead, you got me. Maybe the Island feeds on our collective souls, who knows when it gets this trippy.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Me again. Greg, sorry about the heat, its only 80 here but every few days we get blasted by 95 degree heat. I can't complain because our winters totally suck. Our lowest temp last year was -55 with the wind chill, but I've worked in the Loop when it was -86.

Anyhow, kind of off-topic, I just read the Mark Bernardi solution I had bookmarked (one of Greg's links on the previous post). He makes a lot of good points, particularly in reminding us that every illogical scene (Faraday's notebook not being blank) is set up beforehand (the compass). I just don't see MIB as Alpert, though, partly because of the scene with the compass. Still, some decent thoughts there. I suppose if S6 will bring us back to purgatory, MIB's real reason for our extinction is too get a crapload of new souls down in Hell. That might explain what I typed earlier today.

Thirty-Fiver said...

I'm in the WHH camp and my belief is that WHH only applies to significant events. Although I can't really say what constitutes a significant event. :P

For example, Desmond didn't have to turn the key at the exact moment we saw him turn it, but he did have to turn it for WHHs sake. Minor changes aren't a big deal because that's why we have Course Correction. Because things do deviate but not away from fate.

But I do see the argument that if WHH than what's the need for CC. And if there are changes that are made then that means there are multiple universes that result from these changes. But I just see it as there is a master plan in place and the end result has to be achieved. But how the world ends up at the end result is subject to change.

In fact, I think Darlton gave an analogy like this before although I think they were talking about the show itself. They said something like, you're in New York and you're taking a road trip to LA. The whole time you know where your final destination is but how you get there is up for grabs. You could decide to stop at Chicago on the way, or Dallas, or maybe even Seattle, etc. But when all is said and done you're driving to LA.

Greg Tramel said...

i agree CC and WHH work in tandem, without CC NO WHH and without WHH NO CC

Greg Tramel said...


Greg Tramel said...

Miles walking up the stairs was before freighter

Miles walking down the downstairs was after freighter

BUT they were both WHH

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Thirty-Fiver, the NY to LA trip is sorta like the closed tangent universe thing. So we've seen S1-S5--in my mind--as the trip to Seattle then to LA, whereas S6 will tell us it was Houston to LA all along.

Greg, I agree the two must work in tandem, but to me its like how it seems Jacob and MIB work in tandem. In a somewhat selfish way. I think its because we've seen Eloise as the sole chronal agent, whereas awhile back she might have been working with Abaddon, Malkin, and even Brother Donovan. So I think she is playing both sides, mostly because she has the notebook, and no one else knows this, except Alpert. Sure, Widmore has the Black Rock log, good for him. But we now know that everything Eloise knows is because of Faraday, so there is a course correction whenever What Didn't Happen Happened, or vice versa. But a part of me thinks she is playing it out in her advantage, but I don't really know who she represents.

Karmavore said...

I think the better analogy was/will be delivered by Faraday in a deleted scene on the Season 5 DVDs.

Imagine time is like a stream. If you go upstream and drop a pebble in it, it ripples, but everything returns to normal pretty quickly. You don't really change what happens downstream. But now imagine you drop a boulder in that river. You're definitely going to affect what happens downstream, and maybe send that stream in an entirely different direction.

The time effects we've seen were mostly pebbles. The detonation of Jughead is a boulder.

Karmavore said...

So, yes, WHH and CC have always been coexistent in my mind. WHH usually only applies to the little stuff. Give WHH enough of a test, though, and you can break it.

Here are my other miscellaneous thoughts on the topic. The concrete poured into the Swan hatch is over the *undetonated* Jughead bomb.

The "War" we're about to see is between two different possible futures, both existing simultaneously. We won't have flashbacks and flashforwards as much as we have flashovers. The two different universes co-existing has already by foreshadowed by Hurley's gift, and Charlie's "I am dead, but I'm also here" comment. All our Oceanic friends are going to die in one timeline, as Richard has told us, but that doesn't preclude their presence in the other. Lost is about the characters, and we about to see what these characters would have been had they not come to the Island. They might all get the same ability as Desmond, who foresaw Charlie's death from "other realities". That's why not-dead-Charlie knows to visit Hurley, even though they never met on the plane.

I don't get this blank notebook controversy. It's not like the compass at all. Eloise goes to the store and buys a notebook, gives it to Desmond. Desmond fills it up and takes it back in time, where Eloise finds it. Eloise has full notebook in safe place when she goes to store to buy the blank notebook. (She'd know exactly which notebook to buy, too, wouldn't she?) No paradox, ontological or otherwise.

The compass is stuck in a loop which essentially guarantees that it can't age. Richard Alpert is stuck in a similar loop. This is why birthdays don't mean anything to him.

And, because you can't win if you don't play, I predict that we'll find out that Jack killed his own father when he went to track him down in Austrailia, then pretended not to know what happened to him. MIB knows this, which is why he toments Jack with his father's form. Don't let this theory lower your opinion of me too much. I know it's a stretch.

Thirty-Fiver said...

Could you explain to me why you think Richard is in a loop? I thought out of everybody he would be the one person who is not in an loop. He seems to be the one person who is following a straight timeline. A constant for the Island, if you will.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Karmavore, I was talking about someone else's theory on another blog. I try not to read more than a few, and the guy's "solution" all seemed well & good until he sd that Faraday's notebook should have been blank. No, it shouldn't, and so in part his "solution" doesn't work for me. Everything we see on LOST was set up in an earlier episode. So first we get the compass, and next we get the notebook. I think the way we see the notebook is more for the viewers who don't quite get the time travel stuff. The ones who, and I know a few, shake their heads at the "where did the compass come from?" scenario. Faraday died in his present, so no blank pages, as the other guy wrote. I stand by my confusing statement above, maybe put this way, for those who don't get the compass bit, the explanation of the notes Faraday took is a bit easier to understand.

The war between tangent universes is what I think we will see, too, though I don't know how well it will play out. In the previous entry, I mentioned how its all free will when it comes to not just the O6, but all the survivors, and it will be about which characters will willfully accept their fates in the right universe, similar to Sawyer jumping from the helicopter in S5.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Thirty-fiver, if you see a diagram for a tangent, you'll see a straight line and then a wiggly line, the tangent being the multiple points of contact. Once we started talking about tangent universes, I got to thinking that maybe the reason Richard seems more knowing at times than at others is that he is experiencing both universes simultaneously. An out-there thought, but why not toss it into the hat, right?

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Big, again delete the double post. Not sure why that's going on, first time I thought it was ME.

By the way, if you look at the two different frames on the wall, doesn't one look like it is in a box surrounded by another frame?

Petter said...

Great blog.
I've yet to come up with a theory I can stand by enough to publish, but I have come to belive that clues can be found in the works of Jorge Luis Borges.

Check these links:

Petter said...

neoloki said...

Sorry to interrupt the conversation but it seems their might be a new arg starting. Could be viral, but it is related to the Ronie Midfew Arts link I saw posted here.

The link is to Doc Arzts Blog.

lostmio said...

Thanks for the link, neoloki; right now there's no tidbit that's too trivial for me as long as it's new.

I'm with Big and Greg. CC and WHH are 2 parts of the same whole.

Re the pictures: I'm never one to pass up a visual metaphor:

A photo depicts an event. The frame surrounds and holds the photo.
The photo doesn't change. The frame does change.
The photo is WHH; the frame is the CC.

What's interesting is that we also have a picture that changes while the frame stays the same: the painting of Ben's mother.

Greg Tramel said...

ah! EXCELLENT metaphor Lostmio

i think if you DON'T have WHH+CC=Destiny then paradoxes ensue

3D said...

"The compass is stuck in a loop which essentially guarantees that it can't age."

How do you figure that the compass can't age?

If you traveled back and forth through the same loop of time for 70 years, you would go gray and die. It seems to me that the compass would show the same wear and tear after a few thousand iterations of this loop.

Synchromystic Librarian said...

actually i'm pretty sure Richard said the compass DID age

Synchromystic Librarian said...

i agree with Karmavore

WHH+CC=the end to all paradoxes

like i've said before WHH+CC=Destiny negates should & could which blows ontological paradoxes out of the water

f/k/a NetProphet said...

WHH is simply a rule of physics. It goes hand in hand with something known as the "second time around fallacy". Forget even thinking about multiple iterations, altered timelines and mutliverses - things only ever happen(ed) once. Whatever happened is just what always happened in a single run through of history. A person who physically time travels back to 1974 was always present in 1974 and always did the exact same things, so there is no way a timeline could be altered. So Sawyer always intevened to save Amy, Sayid always shot Ben, etc., and no timeline where these events did not occur exists. While this may seem overtly deterministic, it actually imposes no restrictions on free will. In retrospect, it is the time traveler's exercise of free will in his past that created the future he/she travels from. No chronal protection agents or other deus ex machina required for this to work. From this, I would suggest that even Juliet's apparent detonation of Jughead's trigger device will be seen to be "the Incident" of Island lore.

So where does CC fit in? For dramatic purposes, there is always an exception to the rule.
Per Daniel Faraday, this exception is embodied by Desmond Hume. (BTW - Desmond being an exception is a much sounder Faradayism than the insipid pablum of "people are variables". Like Bigmouth, I doubt even Faraday truly believed in the variable business.) And what is so special about Des? He is the sole survivor of unstuck mind time travel.

Now this is where things get tricky, but I'm wondering if Desmond's ability to experience time in a non-linear fashion while his physical body maintains its proper temporal position throws WHH out the window. If this is the case, CC may be an important counter force to direct things along a "correct path". But who is doing the steering?

This leaves us with Mrs. Hawking and possibly Brother Campbell as likely candidates for agents in the cause of CC. If so, are the notes in Faraday's journal enough for them to have intervened at important moments in Desmond's life to prevent him from screwing things up until a truly critical juncture was reached? It seems likely there is much more to CC and the omniscience it implies, including the possible involvement of Jacob. A secret cabal in league with Jacob, whose modern members may include Ilana and friends as well?

I leave you to consider the following in conjunction with the aforesaid groups use of Latin and Brother Campbell's possible involvement together with this very real quote from the Imago Mundi written by Honorius Augustodunensis in the 12th century while residing in the Scots Monastery in Regenburg - the Benedictine abbey ST. JAKOB:

"There lies in the Ocean an island which is called The Lost. In Charm and all kinds of fertility it far surpasses every other land, but it is unknown to men. Now and again it may be found by chance; but if one seeks it, it cannot be found, and therefore it is called The Lost."

I know I neglected to address the changing picture frames and how they might fit into the scheme of things, but i believe that example implies retrocausation more than anything, and I don't want to meander into the transactional interpretation of time that I think might really be in play...

Thirty-Fiver said...

Are you the same Net Prophet from

Hope so :)

I used to post over there as coaltrain. I think the forum has taken a turn for the worst lately so I barely post there anymore, and when I do it's under the my 35er alias.

Anyways, I hope you are the friend I haven't heard from in awhile, and if so I look forward to some good discussions at BM's refreshing blog.

Synchromystic Librarian said...

KEEP GOING f/k/a NetProphet

u stopped when it was just getting good

f/k/a NetProphet said...

Thirty-Fiver is Coaltrain! 'Tis I from the other site. Great to see you my friend!

I've been following Bigmouth's blog, though not posting much in it, since he left the numbers forums. Always some friendly, thoughtful discussion over here, and its great to see you partaking in it as well.

Synchromystic Librarian: Glad you enjoyed my musings. Didn't want to get too far afield from Big's original post, but the secret society angle thing seems to have some new relevance in light of the recent "Mysteries of the Universe" videos about DHARMA. In a nutshell, my thoughts on WHH and CC come down to WHH as a passive law of nature, whereas CC seems to have some directing force or motive behind it. This begs the ultimate question of who is pulling the strings?

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Anybody else been thinking that several supposed prop errors or changes have involved things that are square(ish)? The picture frame. Juliet's CD box. The phonograph in the Swan. Any other boxes we can think of? Greg?

In re: to secret societies in these mini-episodes, I'd hold off on the basis of minor misdirection, if only because the producers do seem to have fun with giving just a hint of a clue.

NetProphet, I do think that it is through Faraday's notes that Eloise first knew of Desmond, yet she seemed to intervene in his life before there'd be a reason for her to need to, unless there are other notes which we were never privy to, an example being how Des survived the nosebleeds and the time thing (another pet theory of mine is that Des does the same thing Hawking does, only with her it is future flashes, in which I think I explained my own situation, doh). If I'm wrong about her, still, Eloise is willing to mess with Desmond's life the way Jacob let Nadia die. We've only had one episode to speculate, but I'd bet that Eloise does know Jacob, and he knew about the events of 2007 long before they happened, therefore he could have been telling E. (and Brother Campbell, and maybe even Richard Malkin) what needed to be done for years.

neoloki said...

Apparent rumors that Greg Grunberg will be appearing in season 6. If this is the case it is hard to ignore the very real possibility (however briefly) of a Tangent or Multi-verse story line at the beginning of season 6. WHH is all well and good if we are dealing with a universe that has determined laws of physics, but we are dealing with a tv show that likes to pull the rug out from under us and in the end they will do whatever the frak they want.

neoloki said...


Definitely agree with you that Jacob and E. know each other. Skeptical about Jacob's knowledge of the future, especially with him being a devout proponent of free will. Think he knows who the players are/will be and knows their predilections, but the exact course of events? Doubt it. Best and maybe only source for this would be Faraday's journal. The day Faraday died he seemed to have the whole day mapped out in his journal as to what was exactly going to happen. I believe he even knew he was going to die, but did not know who was going to kill him. Running into the others camp waving a gun just seemed a little too forced to be an oversight. This is why he needed Jack to take up his cause and finish the deed. I think in the end Jack was/is the variable and caused the tangent universe to be born. I am hoping to see Daniel, alive, aware of a problem time line, being a part of mending the two time lines back into one on Island story.

Greg Tramel said...

reading this about the Time Traveler's Wife has me wondering if we are off base with the Jughead radiation (that is if there was any)

"Henry has a rare genetic disorder, which comes to be known as Chrono-Displacement, that causes him to involuntarily travel through time......Clare and Henry marry, but Clare has trouble bringing a pregnancy to term because of the genetic anomaly Henry is presumably passing on to the fetus."

Greg Tramel said...

"Very often, they fall victim to the "second time around" fallacy -- they depict events in some year, say 2005; our hero travels back in time and makes some crucial change; when he then returns to 2005 things are different. But this suggests that we have 2005-the-first-time-around and 2005-the-second-time-around, and that doesn't seem to make sense. How could 2005 occur twice? (Back to the Future depicts time travel this way.) One interesting recent depiction of time travel that avoids this mistake is the novel The Time Traveler's Wife."

Greg Tramel said...

oh and another quote from a movie i watched yesterday

"the light is about choice"


yesterday at Lollapalooza The Decemberists performed the Chemical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz, my wife an i watched it online and were mesmerized

Greg Tramel said...

and 1 last thing FOR NOW, LOL

i have a new name for MiB - Ahriman

The Influences of Lucifer and Ahriman

Bigmouth said...

Wayne: If S1-5 is the tangent timeline, I think it makes more sense if the flashbacks involving Jacob are part of that timeline, too. After all, what better metaphor for a tangent (i.e., touching) timeline than Jacob's literal touch? As I mentioned in my Comic-Con recap, I suspect we will see what this other timeline looks like at the beginning of S6, and our Losties will have a choice which timeline survives.

From a storytelling perspective, however, I think they have to choose Jacob's timeline from S1-5. Otherwise, the events involving Locke and Co. in 2007 on the Island will be erased as well, which makes no sense narratively. Remember what Locke says in the Little Prince: "I needed that pain to get where I am now." I think the same is true of our Losties -- resolution of the alternate timeline can not entail erasing or correcting their flashbacks. They need their pain to get them where they need to be.

Nirjhar: I think that's exactly right. You might like my recent posts Three Black Swans and A Little Push, which touch on the same conflict between free will and fate. Jacob is weaving his Tapestry to give humanity the choice to defy the Valenzetti's grim mathematical prediction of our destiny.

Thirty-Fiver: Coaltrain, my friend, why didn't you identify yourself previously?! I'm not sure I agree that WHH applies solely to "significant" events -- the death of Mr. Red Shoes seemed pretty minor in the grand scheme of things. But Darlton's roadmap analogy illustrates the dynamic well. A related metaphor is a turn-by-turn GPS receiver. You plug in your destination and the GPS sets a route you're "supposed" to take. Along the way, you deviate from what's supposed to happen, sometimes by choice, sometimes due to forced detours. Each time, the GPS receiver recalculates your route and corrects you back on course to your destination. Also, see my comments below to Karmavore for an analogy to the Mississippi River.

BTW, I'm working on a longer tangent timeline post that will include a very simple and easy to follow diagram of how the loop and alternate timeline fit together.

Greg Tramel: Spot on: WHH+CC=Destiny! But I'm a little unclear when you say Miles going upstairs was before the freighter, while Miles going downstairs was after. Do you mean the future was affecting the past (i.e., via Netprophets notion of retrocausality)? Or are you saying Miles changed things by traveling back in time with other members of the freighter crew?

Karmavore: I'm glad you mentioned Faraday's speech about throwing stones into a river. Small stones (e.g., Des getting hit by the cricket bat or Jack not operating on Ben) create little ripples like the changing picture frame without disrupting the overall flow of the river. But large boulders like detonation of the bomb can shift its course entirely. There's even an analogy between Jacob's manipulation of the timeline and artificial efforts to control the flow of large rivers like the Mississippi. As you may know, the Mississippi keeps trying to shift course to a different channel, but is restrained by a series of artificial levees we've created. Nature, you might say, keeps trying to course correct.

Petter: I admittedly was skeptical until I read the material you linked. Love the stuff about the Garden of Forking Paths, which strikes me as a great metaphor for the Island! I think you may be onto something and encourage you to share more of your analysis with the rest of us.

Bigmouth said...

Lostmio: Brilliant! I love your analogy of WHH to the static photo and course correction to the changing frame. I also think you've put your finger on something important with Ben's changing picture of the blonde. Remember how Desmond says not following his visions exactly changes the "picture" on the box? I wonder if deviation from Jacob's artificially engineered timeline does the same. Finally, you can forget about Mr. Mio -- we're your family now LOL!

3D: The thinking is that an object like the compass that's created by ontological paradox wouldn't age, particularly if the loop repeats many times. Many, myself included, wondered if this might also explain Richard's agelessness, though Jacob seems a more likely explanation at this point. But Richard mentions that the compass has aged, implying there's only one loop of events that doesn't repeat, or that the age of the compass is reset each time the loop completes.

Synchromystic Librarian: Agreed -- Richard clearly says the compass has aged. Could you say a bit more what you mean by "WHH+CC=Destiny negates should & could which blows ontological paradoxes out of the water"? It seems to me WHH+CC=Destiny=Should=What Could Have Happened but Didn't.

Netprophet: Hello my friend -- we've missed your input! I'm curious what you mean by WHH being a "law of physics." If you're referring to Novikov's Consistency Principle, keep in mind that self-consistency just a conjecture, not a law or even a theory. I'm also a unclear what you mean by the "second time around fallacy." But any logic that leads you to dismiss the possibility of multiple timelines or more than one iteration of events is misapplied to a fictional work like LOST.

I'm with you that it's more likely things have happened only once, exactly as we've seen them. But multiple loops would be a nifty way of explaining certain phenomena like the whispers -- as in the Star Trek: TNG episode Cause and Effect, they're the echoes of past iterations. And Danielle's repeating distress call, which changes slightly with each iteration, would be a great metaphor for multiple loops.

I'm also unclear what you mean about there being a "directing force" behind course correction. How does that describe the experiences of Mr. Red Shoes and Charlie? Ms. Hawking's comment that Mr. Red Shoes would have fallen in the shower or been hit by a car seem to confirm her characterization that the universe itself does the course correcting.

Neoloki: It seems to me that Jacob has knowledge of the future to the extent it corresponds with his plan, as symbolized by the Tapestry. I also think it's fair to assume he has general foreknowledge of our fate as a species, as symbolized by the Valenzetti. That's the point of his discussion with the Man in Black about it only ending once. Do you disagree?

Greg Tramel said...

i think Miles going down the stairs is a Season 6 event and there are probably other scenes we've seen already which we believed to be Season 1-5 events but they are actually Season 6 events

Greg Tramel said...

to try to clarify, i don't think it will be just a pit stop in 2004 but that is where it all begins again so Season 6 will cover events that happend in Season 1-5 with some changes, maybe the initial crash is 316 and they have to go back is 815, maybe this time when Miles goes down the stairs he gives the money to the grandmother

Greg Tramel said...

or maybe it's gonna be more like an Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind scenerio

lostmio said...

neoloki said: "I think in the end Jack was/is the variable and caused the tangent universe to be born."

Yes, Jack made a Big Bang!

Bigmouth: Interesting, I had forgotten about Des's saying that. Here's the exact quote:
"The flashes don't happen exactly how I saw them. The picture changes. I was supposed to let you die, Charlie."

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

@lostmio, I think this is one of the clues we didn't pick up on, the pictures on the boxes, in regards to the seeming prop errors being square-shaped "mistakes." The fact that the flashes aren't 100% correct might be a tell that Desmond will recall both timelines. He recalled the memory of Faraday as it had always been a part of his past. Also, if Eloise went through all the trouble of explaining Mr. Red Shoes, well, maybe E. had her own version of the picture on the box thing going. The difference might be that E. seems possible alternate futures. Maybe Desmond can do both, see future (Charlie's death) and past, on Island, not off-Island. That's why "the Island isn't through with him yet," because E.'s picture on the box has him there. And when he's there, he might very well need to be the guy who cuts the loophole open.

We might still see the ultimate goal here of delaying the Omega Point, but as far as S6 is concerned, Jacob's progress will end, for now, in 2007. I was thinking on the idea that Ajira flashed into the tangent universe, but that really doesn't play out at all.

Capcom said...

FYI, things are progessing strangely concerning the velvet painting website, etc. Numerical clues are surfacing, for all who might be inclined to those kinds of puzzles (not me). It all looks ABC-driven IP-wise, so it's still being taken as offical thus far.

lostmio said...

Speaking of pictures and WHH, how coincidental is it that the latest Lost viral involves a painting? And the "Ronie Midfew Arts" letter to Paul Scheer threatens legal action if he "continues to create reproductions or any new original ... paintings", but seems ok with his having "the [one existing] print, and whatever happened, happened". (italics mine)

It looks more and more like pictures (whether paintings, photos, prints) carry heavy symbolism in Lost. And the above letter hints they're connected to WHH.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Don't forget the paintings by Claire's boyfriend (Aaron's dad) were hanging in Widmore's office. Circles with open mouth and no faces, if I recall. Somewhat similar to the woman's face on the mural, minus the color.

Capcom, why aren't you into this current ARG? Is it more letting others move the solution along?

Greg Tramel said...

boxes inside of boxes inside of boxes inside The Box aka TV

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

I just looked at it, really confusing. I think I'll wait until late tonight when I'm listening to Dizzy Gillespie. Plus, that fact that "DocArzt" is involved sours me right off the bat.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Hey, Greg. Finally getting your weather here. 97 and rising. I'm quite pleased, actually.

Greg Tramel said...

you can HAVE it, my daughter is in your neck of the woods at lollapalooza

so we're all boxed in the lost mystery

Greg Tramel said...

this guy has come up with some interesting ARG deconstruction,so John Locke was a DJ at WAKY, in right had column translate to English

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Small world, Greg. I bought tickets for my niece Ashley & her Kind of a twist on 6 Degrees of Separation.

Capcom said...

Right Wayne, I'm just sitting back and watching this one for now.

Indeed, it is interesting that we are given more paintings to ponder. I love how Lost covers just about every media in it's story, and I don't mean how it draws us in via the internet media. Lost uses literature, paintings, music, etc., to create an intellectual stimulous on just about all the levels possible -- as well as using both sides of the brain via giving us the science and art to study.

Re: boxes inside of boxes, yes, it's like when you put two mirrors facing each other and the images go into infinity. Or when you put a camera facing a TV with the TV image as what the camera projects, which causes the same infinity visual in the TV.

Merzmensch is doing great work, and he's even making sure to post the Lost articles in English instead of German for us, heheh.

Greg, TBS has been rerunning those Librarian movies with Noah Wyle this weekend, and now it makes me think of the Synchromystic Librarian! They're OK movies for TV, and it sure would be my dream job, eh-wot?!

I like your V.E. vs free will idea Nirjhar, it is something to think about.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Tomorrow I'll be looking over the ARG, Capcom. My damn speakers are out so I've only been able to lolok at the picture on the DI videos. Anyone care to give me the dilly-o, I'm at

Something else going back to S1 E1 and Jack. Kate is sewing up his gash, and while she does this, he tells her about Sarah, and how all the nerves from her spinal cord spilled out like pasta[?] because he MADE A MISTAKE; Christian had told him to count to five and continue(which he was still doing during the Apollo bar incident).

Strings, boxes, threads (stitches). There since the first episode.

lostmio said...

Greg I've been all thru merzmensch's stuff. My hunch is he googled "weird beard" and stumbled upon the rich WAKY history, which includes DJ's named Weird Beard and John Locke. Fun stuff, and but I'm missing how the dots connect.

The beardo-or-weirdo poll thing is somewhat more fun since it's on an official abc site. So far I'm not convinced that anyone's unlocked what the hover-over numbers mean, if they mean anything at all. Good gravy, I've labelled hundreds of images with meaningless numbers and names when I saved and uploaded them. The only thing that puts these
numbers anywhere near the grassy knoll is that the vertical and horizontal row sums match.

I'm mildly curious about why we can't actually vote in this so-called poll. pfffft. I have a couple of hunches about where the beard thing is pointing. No biggies. Mainly I think Fox's fake beard is the one of interest, the one we're supposed to call out as weirdo. And it's curious that they left out Des since many of us pondered long over the discontinuity in his shaving scene back just before he left the Swan to track Kelvin.
I'm rambling now, time to quit.

lostmio said...

Capcom I'm a liberrian, too.
I can't speak for Greg or Synchromystic but it's for sure my dream job.
It's my 3rd career, and even after 10 years, I can still say that my worst day at the liberry is still better than my best days in my other two professional careers. I'm in a public library system so it's my joy and my privilege to serve the unwashed masses.

f/k/a NetProphet said...


Sorry to have been a bit abstruse. I'm struggling with fitting my meandering thoughts and random synapse firings into your reply format.:)

As for WHH being a "law of physics", I guess my bias got the better of me. Like you, I'm not keen on a reset/alt timeline scenario. I don't think TPTB are either despite the direction they appear to be leading us down with the ComicCon vids. Beyond just denying the use of the alternate reality device, TPTB have outright mocked its use in Heroes. Maybe I'm naive, but their comments about the use of such an "escape valve" being damaging to the dramatic narrative of Lost make me inclined to believe their denial. In any event, I much prefer your solution to the possible return of former cast members than the reset business.

Now back to my WHH notion. What I really meant is that it is an entirely passive mechanism, and that if we're dealing with a universe where divergent timelines are not in play it may as well be a law of physics. ;) If the arrow of time is truly linear, even the non-linear experience of persons traversing to different points on that line out of sequence won't cause things to happen more than once - thus the "second time around fallacy." I'll have to check out the Time Travler's Wife to see how they employ this.

As for CC, I think that the term "correction" implies some directing force behind it. Otherwise, who is to say what is correct? Even if you call it fate, destiny or whatever, doesn't this implicate a higher plan?

Sorry, work beckons and I have to go now. Will be back with more (or less?) as you and the gang can tolerate.


Capcom said...

Happy Monday Sickies. :-)

Lostmio, have you seen that TV show The Librarian with Noah Wyle yet? It's OK, not award-winning fare, but entertaining nonetheless. Kind of a cross betwen Indiana Jones and Warehouse 13. Their secret library houses things including Noah's Ark, Excalibur, the fountain of youth, and other historical magical items, so it's part library and museum. It's probably where they were putting the Ark of the Covenent at the end of the first Indie movie, heheh. Museuem and library work is waht I'm working towards for my post-IBM career.

I believe that Merzmensch and others found the WAKY call letters in one of the publications shown in the first Mysteries video, so then they looked it up and found the beard thing there on that site. Then just now we see that other beard stuff (whatever that's supposed to mean) on Scheer's site. I have no opinion on what it's supposed to mean either, I'm just going to observe for a while.


Capcom said...

Hooboy, I just watched the Scheer video for today, and it's pretty cornball. Damon and Carlton both walk right by him separately as he's doing his thing to get evidence. :-\

neoloki said...

I have never thought their has been any relevance with the paintings appearing in Widmore's office and Claire's boyfriend. All of the painting's you see in Lost are done by Jack Bender and he has a fairly distinctive approach and this accounts for their similarity.

neoloki said...


You didn't mention that they revealed the title of the premiere for season 6 "LA X"? It sounds official. I think this is pretty definitive evidence of some sort of alternate/tangent/rest story line.

Capcom said...

Well, I didn't want to give it all away, heheh. It might be a pretend title too. Unless the "X" is a hint that S6 will be like the X-Files with aliens, haha. (Sweet Lord no!)

The painting in Wid's office had a polar bear and namaste in it, I believe. Not clues for anything, IMO, just more extra puzzle pieces for "the big picture" that are interesting but probably not essential. We're probably supposed to wonder if Widmore knew Claire's BF or something, even if it's not important or true. More extra layers.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

That was my only point, no clues, just repitition. Get the viewers to pay attention. Capcom, if its not on Lostpedia, check Google, I know there's a site that covers the paintings, just as there is one that illustrates the changes in the mural. But somewhere in Widmore's office there is a similar painting.

Neoloki, I knew Jack Bender did the paintings, but he could easily have altered his style if it was meant to be. I don't find any significance to the paintings, more, in reflection, that the viewers were being prompted to look for recurring images.

NetProphet, that's been my biggest problem with course correction. The only real proponent of that was Eloise Hawking, and it's 100% determinism on her part.

lostmio, a librarian is my dream job. No chance of finding one here. Even the library jobs are part of Chicago's patronage system.

Capcom said...

Yep, I was agreeing with ya. It's pretty easy for an artist to create works with different styles if needed, so if TPTB had wanted the pics to look different, I'd imagine that Bender could very well have created a diverse looking array of pieces. Or, they would have gotten someone else to make some different artwork, such as the dog painting in Jacob's cabin made by someone else, Ben's painting, etc. I'm thinking that TPTB just want us to keep freaking out everytime we see some of Bender's abstract art with island elements in it. :-)

What's the patronage system Wayne?

f/k/a NetProphet said...

Wayne Allen Sallee:

Agreed as to Eloise Hawking's role in the CC business. We only know about the alleged rules of CC because she told Desmond during one of his mind trips. Set aside the expository necessity of explaining a plot device to us (the audience), and you're left wondering why she was compelled to intervene at all if CC was really in play.

Add to this the only real time we saw CC "dictate" what was going to happen was the many deaths of Charlie Pace. And despite the lesson in CC, didn't Desmond actually thwart "fate" until Charlie let himself succumb to a self fulfilling prophecy? I'm still struggling to pinpoint the culprit and motive, but this whole thing seems like a set up of sorts - part of a con(?). Notably, Desmond's flashes appeared to have ceased once Charlie was gone.

My final thought on the CC topic (for now) involves the man in the red shoes. What if Eloise used WHH, knowing old red shoes was doomed (from Faraday's journal or her own ventures in time), as a way to convince Des to believe in the fiction of CC in furtherance of other purposes?

Thunderstorm said...

Lot's of good stuff here, I'll have to go back and read everything more thoroughly later...just my basic impressions of WHH and CC.

I posted a theory over on the Fuselage within the last year about WHH being true but also being a relative term.

I still think WHH is a relative term for the security of the investment by the audience and the way the characters 'tweak' past events and 'the universe' makes them 'morph' into WHH is course correction.

So if we have three different past histories (1, 2, 3) where we have three causual events (X, Y, Z).

1. X causes Y which causes Z.
2. X2 causes Y2 which causes Z.
3. X3 causes Y3 which causes Z.

"Course correction" is just the desired outcome and always will be the outcome of 'Z', regardless of the causation, this is what keeps our LOST universe from imploding on a paradox.

What the viewer witnesses is some combination of iterations and events pieced together, which achieve the same basic end. It's also (conveniently) something that doesn't need to be known to 'get' the story, it's only an additional piece of coolness for folks like us, who like to dig deeper.

In other words, if we see an episode of LOST with a story arc where Jack does X2 and the next event we see is Y3 and the final outcome is Z, then WHH is still sorta true, but relative for him and us.

WHH is not a literal truth because we would be able to deduce that X2 COULDN'T cause Y3. Because quite frankly it would be seen as an inconsistent history. Even if we had to look at easter eggs or pictures on an old woman's wall. We saw the inconsistency with Miles but it's the same desired effect in the end, his 'Z' still happened (whatever it is). Those picture frames tell us it's all happening more than once, right?

I think they gave us this WHH rule and beat us over the head with it to get us to keep our trust in them.

The whole Desmond didn't apply to him anyways, I think Hawking's exposition in FBYW was not only just for the audience (and not Desmond) it didn't pertain to CTT either. It pertained to the basic idea of how the loops keep producing 'whatever happened, happened'.

Anonymous said...

i must say..i dont really see any difference in the frames

what is it im missing?


Bigmouth said...

gg13, the first frame is wood, while the second is gold.

Greg Tramel said...

oh no, alchemy rears it's head again