Sunday, September 28, 2008

LT131: The Truth is Out There?


Jack’s desire to return is only partially explained to us. What we learn is that terrible things have happened on the island after the Oceanic 6 left.

Now consider our Season 4 ended with Jack and the funeral parlor to find Locke in the casket. Do you recall the name of the funeral parlor?

The name, Hoffs/Drawlar, is an anagram which rearranged spells “Flash Forward”. It doesn’t seem random to me that we wrap up a season in a building named for time jumping with the three principal leaders all present: Jack, Ben and Locke.


Imagine my surprise when I learn there is a book named Flash Forward.

Please notice the author’s name…oh, the J. stands for James…JAMES SAWYER!!!

The book was written in 2000, plenty of time for some writers to come along and use it as a blueprint for a TV show in 2004.


Apologies if I’ve mentioned this before…but in Switzerland there is this super collider science project going on. It is a 17-mile long circular tube that sits 300 feet below ground at near absolute zero and zings protons around at near the speed of light, held on course in the tube by very strong magnets, in order to collide into each other. Why? To see what happens, of course.

300 feet deep: John asks Ben while riding down the Orchid Hatch elevator, “How deep is this thing?” Well, about a 35-story-building deep, John.

Absolute zero: It looked very cold in the Dharma Wheel Room.

Speed of light: Daniel says the light looks “off”, light flashes when island moves

Magnets: Electromagnetic stuff all throughout the show beginning with Jack’s key attracted to something behind the Swan Hatch wall

Colliding protons: Fringe science just like the Dharma Initiative were conducting

Why?: Same logic offered in most of Ben’s answers.

Some have feared that when to basic sub-atomic particles collide in Switzerland that a black hole could form and swallow the world whole. Well, we won’t find out for a number of months as the machine ran into some technical problems the first time the scientists took it for a test drive.


The book mentioned above is a story about a scientific research group in Switzerland whose goal is to develop the world’s most powerful particle accelerator in order to smash electrons into each other. The real Super Collider project has been underway in one form or another for 25 years, so the author is doing the Dan Brown thing (if you get my reference) by borrowing heavily on real-world circumstances and established-legend as a backdrop for his own tale. So why couldn’t LOST do the same? offers this review of Flash Forward:

“What would you do if you got a glimpse of your own personal future and it looked bleak? Try to change things, or accept that the future is unchangeable and make the best of it? In Flashforward, Nobel-hungry physicists conducting an unimaginably high-energy experiment accidentally induce a global consciousness shift. In an instant, everyone on Earth is "flashed forward" 21 years, experiencing several minutes of the future. But while everyone is, literally, out of their minds, their bodies drop unconscious; when the world reawakens, car wrecks, botched surgeries, falls, and other mishaps add up to massive death and destruction.”

Remind you of anything?

Could the terrible things that Locke warns about to happening on the island in the future refer to similar events found in the Flash Forward book? Maybe not exactly, but of the same nature? The point to consider is that time jumping has to have some bad effects. Every kid who dreams of teleporting (which is really time travel if you think about it) wonders if he could be transported into a solid wall. Even Ben points out that island jumping isn’t an exact science, John.


One most consistent thing I yell at the TV screen when watching LOST is, “Won’t you people talk to each other? Share information!” This is my wish, that someone would tell someone what they have learned. They should have one big meeting around the camp fire, pass out the Dharma Beer and just share.

Now imagine the book scenario: once everyone zaps back to their bodies after the time shift of a few minutes. Would you talk about it?

I suppose it depends if you are in a group or all alone. The isolated people probably pick themselves up, dust themselves off and think, “That was weird”. For the most part, people are uncomfortable talking about things they don’t understand.

Amazon review continues:

“Slowly, as recovery efforts continue, people realize that during the Flashforward (as it comes to be called) they experienced a vision of the future. The range of visions is astounding--those who would be asleep in the future saw psychedelic dream landscapes, while others saw nothing at all (presumably they'd be dead). But those who saw everyday life 20 years hence have to come to grips with evidence of dreams forsaken (or realized). Soon, the physicists who caused the Flashforward are struggling to help the world decide whether the future is changeable--and whether the experiment is worth repeating. Robert James Sawyer has captured a truly compelling idea with Flashforward, and he fully explores what such an event might mean to humanity.”

NOTE: After this description it mentions the book is out of print…just like “The Valenzetti Equation” book is out of print!


When the Oceanic 6 left the island they did so under the wrong circumstances. Perhaps this was their two minutes into the future and the six are simply returned to their prior state. Jack’s dad is still Chief Surgeon and Kate’s biological father is still drinking and so on. They are forced to relive their future they just witnessed…or to try and change it…or die trying.


Readers of the book have shared additional similarities:

The review on is written by a Ms. Littleton – same last name as Claire

The author is a winner of the prized Hugo Award for best science fiction works. Hugo Reyes, anyone?

A man dreams of the future and finds himself naked like Desmond

Sydney, Australia is mentioned

The whole test is ran on a computer where a push of the button starts the test


Pillars of black smoke is found in the book

CERN is described much like the Dharma Initiative

The scientists had an “incident” during the research work

When the world flashed forward for a few minutes, the date was October 23

After the world returns from their time journey, the populace begins having “visions”

The author’s other works center around religion and science with faith always winning out over mysticism


The title of the first episode of next season has been discovered. It is simply entitled, “Because You Left”. I’m thinking we are going to see the destruction caused by the Oceanic 6’s butterfly effect.

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