Posted by: cousinbrandon | May 6, 2009

LOST – Season 5, Episode 15: “Follow the Leader”

In preparation for last night’s episode (not to mention the upcoming finale), I began working on (or going back to) a cockamamie idea of mine I’ve mentioned previously, albeit not for some time.  Ready?  Here goes:

Jack is Jacob.

Now, I will happily return to this theory at post’s end, but in the meantime I’ve got plenty of summary, insights, and questions regarding last night’s precursor to the Season 5 finale, “Follow the Leader.”  And let me first say that, unlike penultimate episodes past, which typically do little more than set up the season finale, last night’s episode was chock full of good stuff.  Sure, there was a good amount of set-up involved, but there was a handful of great lines/scenes, as well.  And with that I give you…

1. “Follow the Leader.”  That’s right.  Rather than begin with my typical recap, I wanted to make a point of recognizing the significance of the title, which I’ll delve further into as the entry progresses.  Like most episode titles on LOST, “Follow the Leader” is both telling and ironic.  The mere words “follow the leader” have obvious implications for us all, as it’s something we all of us have done/played at some point in our lives, in which we followed someone’s lead, followed someone in line, and/or followed/copied someone’s actions (e.g., Simon Says).  Considering what transpires this episode as well as our understanding of the word “leader” on LOST, we’re immediately set up for a guessing game, of sorts.  This episode is abundantly overpopulated not only with a variety of “leaders,” but would-be leaders.  And rather than point all of them out here, I will make note of them at recap’s end, so that we might first begin with…

2. The Shooting.  We begin this week’s episode where we left off in “The Variable,” as Jack and Kate watch 1977 Daniel infiltrate the Hostiles’ camp, gun a’ blazing!  In what’s been a heavily relied upon device this season, we once again get a previous plot point from an alternate perspective, this time from that of Kate and Jack.  Kate is questioning Daniel’s method, and just as Jack attempts to convince her that Faraday knows what he’s doing, Pow!  Daniel takes a bullet courtesy of his mother, Eloise Hawking.  Jack instinctively wants to help, but Kate wisely pulls him away, insisting they run.  Unfortunately, their efforts are quickly thwarted by a couple Hostiles on horseback, as one of them smacks Jack in the face with the butt of his rifle.  Hostile Charles Widmore captures the two of them.  Eloise, in the meantime, flips through Faraday’s journal, obviously recognizing her own handwriting in the journal’s inscription.  (In one of the more understated moments, I especially enjoyed Eloise asking if Kate and Jack were with Daniel.  When Jack answers that, yes, they were, Kate flips a look of total exasperation in Jack’s direction, as if to say, “Smooth move, Exlax.”  Well done, Kate.)  She orders Jack and Kate be brought to her tent, as she realizes the two of them are not with the DHARMA Initiative.  And from here we move to…

3. The Ship in a Bottle.  We find ourselves “back to the future,” namely 2007 island time, where the camera pulls out from a model ship being constructed inside a bottle by one Richard Alpert.  A couple things here:  A) Anyone else think that Richard’s building a replica of the Black Rock; and B) if this isn’t the biggest tongue-in-cheek metaphor for the entire series, I don’t know what is.  Look, many have speculated despite the writers’ insistence that LOST could culminate in a St. Elsewhere snowglobe ending.  And if you don’t know what that means by now, just Google the expression and I guarantee you’ll figure it out but quick.  If nothing else, the building of a ship in a bottle is not only a nod to snowglobe effect – the notion that none of this is, in a sense, real – but also a metaphor for the island and its inhabitants.  Back in Season 2 (I believe), Desmond explained to Jack that he didn’t “come back” to the island; rather, he could never leave – that no matter how hard he tried, he always ended up back on the island, as they’re all “trapped in a bloody snowglobe.”  The ship in a bottle, then, is the personification of said statement, as a waterless ship contained by a “bubble,” of sorts, is going absolutely nowhere, and is instead a relic – a reminder of stasis.  But enough about the model ship.  Let’s, instead, focus on our old pal…

4. John Locke.  A dead boar-carrying Locke strolls into Others’ territory.  Alpert appears genuinely surprised to see Locke, who tells Richard that they have “an errand to run.”  Alpert notes that Locke seems different, to which Locke responds, “I have a purpose now.”  (Funny, by the way, as it seems Locke has had several “definitive” purposes, yet they always fall through.  Are we to believe, then, that, this time, he’s truly found his purpose, or will this be yet another failed attempt at achieving his destiny?)  Even I must admit that the new, confident, charismatic Locke is an absolute ass-kicker.  Guess that sort of thing happens when you return from the dead, huh?  (That is, assuming he did return from the dead, which I’m still not fully convinced of.  In other words, is that really Locke?  I’m not so sure it is…)  Alpert, it appeared, was almost upset/unhappy to see Locke, or maybe I was reading too much into it.  On the sidelines, Sun asks Ben about Alpert.  Ben first informs her that Locke is the leader now.  As to Richard, Ben describes him as “a kind of advisor” who’s had that role for a long, long time, once again hinting at the ageless one’s pseudo-permanence on the island.  Apparently unfazed by Richard’s status and mystical qualities, Sun storms toward Richard and asks if he was there, in 1977, with Jack, Kate and Hurley, and if he remembers them.  Richard confirms that he does remember them, as he “watched them all die.”  Yikes!  (For the record, anyone else think that, perhaps, Richard didn’t really watch them all die?)  Locke asks Richard if he’s still got the compass he gave him.  Richard tells him that, yes, he has it, and it’s still functioning despite some rust.  Locke asks that Ben join them on our “errand,” to which Ben replies, “What, are you afraid I’m going to stage a coup?”  And in one of the best, most telling Locke lines ever spoken (to Ben, anyway), he replies, “I’m not afraid of anything you can do anymore.”  I’m pretty sure that was followed by Locke dangling Ben’s “manhood” in front of him, but the editors must have cut that scene.  We then return to…

5. Eloise’s Tent.  A bloodied Jack and Kate have been captured and returned to Eloise’s tent.  Once alone, Jack proposes to Kate that they follow Faraday’s plan to detonate the bomb so that everyone else survives.  Kate, not at all convinced by Jack’s (and, therefore, Daniel’s) plan, plays devil’s advocate to his suggestion, recognizing that he could be wrong and he might essentially kill everyone.  In Jack’s mind, detonating the bomb would allow for Oceanic 815 to have safely landed in Los Angeles, thus alleviating the last three years of misery they’ve endured.  “It was not all misery,” Kate retorts.  “Enough of it was,” responds Jack.  (I’m curious, here, as to what exactly Kate was referring to?  Does she make this point to suggest that her time with Jack wasn’t misery?  Or, perhaps, her time with Sawyer?  Or even her time “away” from her real life, in which she would have been delivered to Los Angeles as a fugitive?  Or is it, in fact, the time she had with Aaron that wasn’t misery?  Frankly, I was highly interested in Kate’s response, simply because I couldn’t get a total read on what, exactly, she was referring to, so well done, Evangeline.)  Ellie enters and wants to know what the bomb was for.  Obviously Kate and Jack are tight-lipped, so Eloise regales them with her meeting Faraday in 1954 (she was 17 at the time, so “now,” in 1977 (which, again, is 23 years later, wink-wink), she is 40?  Um, did anyone else think she looked younger than 40?).  “How is this my handwriting,” asks Eloise, holding up Faraday’s journal, “if I don’t remember writing it?”  Jack simply explains that she hasn’t written it yet.  He tells Eloise to follow what’s in the journal in order to ensure that none of this happens, which in itself is a total mind-screw for characters and viewers alike.  Jack again enquires as to the whereabouts of the bomb.  According to Ellie, the DHARMA Initiative has built its village over it.  Just think of all that delicious radiation seeping up from underneath their village directly into their homes.  Meanwhile, in other parts of the 1977 island…

6. The Other Prisoners.  Interesting, no, that both sets of couples — Jack & Kate and Sawyer & Juliet — are simultaneously held as prisoners in 1977 by the two opposing factions populating the island, the Hostiles and the DHARMA Initiative, respectively.  Radzinsky (or “Stuart” to his pals) is interrogating Sawyer as to the whereabouts of Kate.  Sawyer, in typical Sawyer fashion, replies with only smart-ass answers, not giving up a thing.  Juliet attempts to reason with Radzinksy, as does Horace, who has seemingly been supplanted as the man in charge by none other than Radzinksy himself.  After his beatdown of Sawyer gets him nowhere, Phil the Weasel pipes in and says he can get to Sawyer to talk.  How?  Well, by delivering a right cross to Juliet.  And, in typical clichéd fashion, a handcuffed, bloodied, outnumbered Sawyer looks directly at Phil and tells him, “I’m going to kill you.”  Still, I don’t think any of us would be sad to see Phil go, so more power to you, LeFleur.  Radzinsky realizes that Kate came on board with Jack, and asks to the whereabouts of the other one, who is identified as Hugo Reyes.  Radzinksy responds in his typically calm fashion and asks, “Who the hell is Hugo Reyes?”  So, we naturally cut to…

7. Hugo Reyes.  Hurley is in the DHARMA kitchen area stocking up on canned DHARMA goods, assumingly to provide sustenance for his escape into the jungle, or simply to tide him over for the next five minutes.  (Sorry, I couldn’t avoid the jab!  You’re my boy, Hurley.)  Hurley exits the compound, backpack and guitar case in hand, under the watchful eye of Pierre Chang (which, unfortunately, sounds a bit too much like “PF Chang’s”), who follows him out of the camp.  (And by the way, there’s no way there’s a guitar in that case.  Granted, I’m not suggesting it’s Charlie’s remains, either, but it’s not a guitar.)  Miles, Jin and Hurley are leaving for the beach when Chang confronts them, wanting to know what they’re doing, and if they really are, in fact, from the future.  (In one of the great exchanges takes place, incidentally, Hurley responds to Chang by saying, “We asked you first.”  Man, I love how they constantly portray Hurley as an overgrown child, and yet provide him with great insight like his take on Miles’ daddy issues as compared to Empire.)  They deny they’re from the future, but eventually have to come clean when Chang stumps Hurley by asking who the President is.  (Ironically, this was the same question Hurley was afraid he’d have to answer during the intake process into the DHARMA Initiative.)  Chang realizes that Miles is, in fact, his son, and yet I’d call him anything about emotional about it.  I mean, if I met my infant daughter as a grown woman, I think I might freak out just a bit, but I’m weird that way.  Trekking back to Hostile country, we find…

8. Charles Widmore.  Staring intently at Faraday’s body, Widmore asks why “this man” looks so familiar to me.  This, of course, is a callback to “Jughead,” in which Daniel and company were held captive by 1954 Others Widmore, Ellie and the gang.  Ellie tells Richard that he’s coming with her to locate the bomb.  Widmore, clearly concerned with her decision, appears to talk her out of it.  And if you notice, he appears to place his hand gently on her stomach in the process, thus indicating her being pregnant with Daniel, which would make sense, after all, as it’s 1977.  In other words, the timeline matches nicely.  Jack and Kate enquire as to the identity of the man speaking to Ellie, to which Richard responds by telling them it’s Charles Widmore.  And in a great moment of irony, Richard tells Jack and Kate that “love can be complicated.”  Truer words were never spoken, sir, right, Jack and Kate?  We cut away to the future, specifically…

9. The Errand.  Locke, Richard and Ben are trekking through the jungle.  (And by the way, holy all-star cast power!  I mean, Locke, Richard and Ben on a walk in the woods.  They could have discussed a recipe for Oatmeal Raisin cookies and I would have been sold.)  Richard wants to know where Locke has been, naturally.  Locke informs them that he wants to see Jacob, as “I am the leader now.”  Richard, of course, defers to Locke, as he, too, recognizes John as the leader.  Locke explains that he’s leading them to a plane crashed in the jungle, which is, of course, the plane that brought Mr. Ecko to the island.  (Interesting, too, that Locke is still tied to Ecko, as the two of them have always been enmeshed.)  Locke explains that a man is about to come through the jungle and rest against that plane, and that it’s Richard’s job to remove the bullet from the man’s leg, and convince him to bring all of his friends back to the island.  He tells Richard that he must tell the man that he’ll have to die in order to convince the others to join him.  A perplexed Ben and Richard want to know how John knows.  They ask, who is that man?  “Me,” replies John.  As Locke and Ben watch the interaction, a stunned Ben wants to know how Locke knew to be here.  “The island told me,” he responds.  He then calls out Ben by asking, “You’ve never actually seen [Jacob], have you?”  Ben, of course is stumped, as we can pretty much assume that, no, he has not.  Now, of course, we all realize John is sending Richard to fix John, but to see how this scene was set in motion is fantastic.  Again, this makes us not only consider these events connecting to each other, but make us realize the endless cycle that are characters would have to be a part of.  That is, if Locke is sending Richard to heal himself in 2007, isn’t the healed Locke always bound to flash again, return to the correct 2007, recruit his friends, be strangled by Ben, and return to the island, at which time he can recruit Ben and Richard to join him in the jungle, so that Richard can remove the bullet from Locke and set him, once more, on his proper path?  In that sense, aren’t they simultaneously succumbing to destiny, yet recognizing it not as an individual occurrence, but a continuous one?  Or, are we to believe that Locke, by sending Richard to heal the injured Locke, is actually “captaining his own ship,” so to speak, and controlling his own fate?  After all, Locke knows where and when this event is to take place.  If he doesn’t lead Richard into the jungle, he cannot send Richard to help him.  Hmmm…. 

10. The Deal.  Chang returns to the Hydra Station in order to evacuate the island personnel, only to find the interrogation of Sawyer and Juliet still underway.  Stunned, he asks what’s going on, only to have Radzinsky once again claim that he’s in charge.  Chang wants everyone off the island, but Radzinsky, per their orders, demands that they continue drilling.  Sawyer proposes that he and Juliet, along with the other women and children on the island, be put on the sub.  Radzinksy agrees in exchange for a map of the Hostiles’ headquarters.  Meanwhile, we find Jack and company by…

11. The Stream.  Ellie, Richard, Jack, Kate and a couple of random Hostiles are positioned by the stream.  According to Ellie, they’ll have to swim down and through a small passage to find the bomb.  Kate can no longer take it, and insists that she’s leaving in order to find their friends and warn them of the impending detonation.  One of the Hostiles points his rifle on Kate.  We hear a gunshot and see a stunned Kate, only to discover that it was not her who was shot, but the Hostile.  As it turns out, our ol’ pal Sayid emerged from the bush and shot him.  Sayid is confused as to why they are here, as he killed Ben Linus, thus altering their destiny and rewriting the future.  Um, sorry to say this, Sayid, but Jack and Kate inform him that Kate took Ben to the Hostiles in order to be healed.  Sayid, of course, cannot understand why they’d do that, but Kate reminds him that they’re not in the business of murdering children.  (Um, yeah, I know Kate’s really attached to Aaron and all, which is why, incidentally, I think she’s so hellbent on not erasing those three years, but it’s Ben, Kate!  The man who held you hostage!  The man who kept you in a cage!)  In what can only be described as a complete (and obvious) Locke-ian moment, Jack explains to Kate that he has to detonate the bomb in order to erase the last three years.  As Jack explains it, “This is our destiny.”  Kate points out that Jack sounds like “him,” and he was crazy.  So, even further evidence of Jack’s transition of a man of science to a man of faith.  On the other side of the island…

12. The Sub.  Miles, Hurley and Jin are watching as the DHARMA Initiative brings its women and children to the sub in order to evacuate them from the island.  Miles watches his own history, in that he sees Chang demand his wife and son (Miles) board the sub and leave.  (In this moment, incidentally, Miles understands and even forgives his father, and a certain closure must ultimately be realized, thus making me think that Miles could die, despite the fact that he’s alive in 2007.  Granted, Daniel was alive in the future, as well, and was just shot and killed in 1977.)  Sawyer and Juliet are being led to the sub, as Sawyer suggests schemes for the two of them to make a fortune, such as buying Microsoft stock and betting the Cowboys.  Juliet boards the sub and, just for a moment, I ws absolutely convinced Sawyer was going to somehow shut the top of the sub with his foot and remain on the island.  Instead, he says, “Good riddance,” and goes below.  Meanwhile, returning to the other side of the island…

13. The Tunnels.  Jack tells Sayid that he understands if he doesn’t follow them underwater.  Richard dives in, followed by Jack.  We watch Jack swim into the rock “tunnel” and emerge on the other side, in what Richard calls “The Tunnels” but looks much like the Temple itself.  They are followed by Ellie and Sayid.  An elated Jack tells Sayid he didn’t think he’d come.  The best case scenario, according to Sayid, is that Jack saves everyone; worst case scenario he puts them out of their misery.  (Hmmm, again the mention of “misery.”)  The Island Swim Team makes its way through the Tunnels.  Sayid is convinced that Ellie’s motive for detonating the bomb is not to save them, but to destroy the DHARMA Initiative.  But according to Jack, in 30 years she’ll send them all back.  Finally, the gang approaches a large room, and in the middle of said room they uncover Jughead.  Once again, we return to…

14. The Sub, Part 2.  Juliet and Sawyer are handcuffed across from one another in the sub.  Juliet is concerned about the fact that they’re being shipped off to Ann Arbor, and what’s going to happen to them then.  Sawyer points out, though, that they’re not going to Ann Arbor; they’re going to be free.  In that moment, Sawyer and Juliet recapture the love that they’ve grown in the three years that they’ve been in on the island sans Kate and Jack and the rest of the 815 gang.  And just as they’re convinced all is well and good, who should be led below but Kate.  Now, I don’t know what an actual catfight smells like, but I swear that If I’d put my nose against the screen I’d have had an unmistakable answer.  With that, the sub takes off and descends beneath the ocean.  This, then, leads us to our final scene/storyline, which I like to call…

15. The Quest for Jacob.  Locke, Richard and Ben return to the Others’ camp.  Richard proposes they get some rest and leave in the morning, yet Locke, as leader, wants to leave immediately to find Jacob.  Locke asks if this is everybody, and proceeds to give a speech regarding the mysterious Jacob, who is responsible for leading them despite never having been seen by any of them.  Locke, therefore, would like the entire camp to join them on their quest to locate Jacob.  A concerned Richard tells Ben that Locke could be trouble.  “Why do you think I tried to kill him?” replies Ben.  We cut to daylight where the entire camp is walking along the beach, away from their “comforts of home,” in search of the mysterious Jacob.  Ben tells Locke, in typical manipulative fashion, that Richard is concerned about their pilgrimage, and expressed a certain displeasure over seeking out Jacob in order to find his friends.  Locke informs Ben that he isn’t searching for Jacob to find his friend.  No, Locke wants to find Jacob “so I can kill him.”  Zing!  And even though I so knew that line was coming, it was absolutely fantastic.  Again, the self-assured Locke is great if for nothing else the delivery of his lines.  This then ends the episode, which brings me all the way back to…

16. The Leader?  As I pointed out at the beginning, the title of tonight’s episode is both on the nose, confusing, and ironic.  After all, we are not only given characters identified as or thrust into roles as leaders, but forced to realize that perhaps none of them are actually the leaders they think they might be.  Let’s consider all of tonight’s would-be leaders:  A) Sawyer, who was once the head of security, yet now handcuffed and shipped off the island.  And who is responsible for this?  B) Radzinksy, who usurped Horace’s leadership and proclaimed himself in charge; C) Richard, who is never identified as the “leader” but an advisor, yet appears to act as leader in the absence of both Jacob and Locke; D) Jack, the man who once claimed leadership of his fellow survivors and promised to get them off the island.  After a season of biding his team, he has finally lept into action in order to save everyone, yet will his decision be the cause of their eventual death, or even the unintentional catalyst for putting them all on the island to begin with; E) Ben, the man who would be leader despite, clearly, never truly being cut out as leader.  What’s more, he defers to Locke as leader, even though Locke needs no sort of recognition from Ben to claim his rightful place; F) Locke, who more than anyone else is recognized not only by himself as the leader, but by other people, as well.  He is in place to lead, literally and figuratively, the Others.  Unfortunately, though, and despite Ben’s tongue-in-cheek threat to form a coup, that might just be what transpires, as both Ben and now Richard have expressed displeasure with him; and, finally G) Jacob.  Now, if there’s one “person” on the island who, despite the time variances, has served as leader, it’s Jacob.  Richard, Ben and Widmore all clearly defer to him.  In fact, they’re all apparently terrified of him.  Locke has sought him out, but to no avail.  Now, at one point I thought Jacob might not be a “he” but an “it,” a la The Twilight Zone episode “The Old Man in the Cave,” in which a post-war village can not make a single decision without first speaking to the self-appointed leader, the lone individual who has access to and communication with the “old man in the cave.”  Tired of living in fear and no longer willing to let this would-be phony dictate their lives, the townspeople break into the cave and discover that the “man” is actually a rather large computer, dictating and determining information.  Other than the computer part, this sounds reminiscent of LOST.  And, as far as we know, could actually be the case.  But I’m left with one of the would-be leaders, the only person who hasn’t necessarily gone looking for Jacob, the leader known, interestingly, as Jack, which brings me to my final, albeit lengthy, point of the day…

17. Jack is Jacob.  Okay, this is merely speculation, but so be it.  Since LOST debuted, Jack has been cast in the leader role.  It’s only this season, for the first time, that he’s taken a back seat and allowed fate to take him where it will.  (Well, that is until “The Variable,” when he took off with Faraday and Kate.)  Jacob, as we know, is more or less the controlling force on the island, the ultimate boss of the Others/Hostiles, who Widmore, Alpert and Ben have all deferred to.  It’s an easy parallel, then, that if Jack = leader and Jacob = leader, then Jack = Jacob.  Okay, I know that’s completely oversimplified, but consider a couple more factors.  
A. The Name Game.  First, and most obvious, are the names, Jack and Jacob.  Consider, first, the origins of the names (from
Gender: Masculine

Usage: English

Pronounced: JAK  [key]

Derived from Jackin (earlier Jankin), a medieval diminutive of JOHN. It has long been regarded as an independent name. During the Middle Ages it was very common, and it became a slang word meaning “man”. It was frequently used in fairy tales and nursery rhymes, such as ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’, ‘Little Jack Horner’, and ‘Jack Sprat’. American writers Jack London (1876-1916) and Jack Kerouac (1922-1969) were two famous bearers of this name.


Gender: Masculine

Usage: English, Dutch, Scandinavian, Biblical

Pronounced: JAY-kəb (English), YAH-kawp (Dutch)  [key]

From the Latin Iacobus, which was from the Greek Ιακωβος (Iakobos), which was from the Hebrew name יַעֲקֹב (Ya’aqov). In the Old Testament, Jacob (later called Israel) was the son of Isaac and Rebecca and the father of the twelve founders of the twelve tribes of Israel. He was born holding his twin brother Esau’s heel, and his name is explained as meaning “holder of the heel” or “supplanter”. Other theories claim that it is in fact derived from a hypothetical name like יַעֲקֹבְאֵל (Ya’aqov’el) meaning “may God protect”.

The English names Jacob and James derive from the same source, with James coming from Latin Iacomus, a later variant of Iacobus. Unlike English, many languages do not have separate spellings for the two names.

In England, Jacob was mainly regarded as a Jewish name during the Middle Ages, though the variant James was used among Christians. Jacob came into general use as a Christian name after the Protestant Reformation. A famous bearer was Jacob Grimm (1785-1863), the German linguist and writer who was, with his brother Wilhelm, the author of ‘Grimm’s Fairy Tales’.

Now, consider the meanings themselves (from


In English, the name Jack means “god is gracious.” 

In Hebrew, the name Jack means- “Supplanter.”


In Biblical, the name Jacob means “supplanter.”

In Hebrew, the name Jacob means “He grasps the heel”

B. The Lineage.  Look, what’s the deal with Christian Shephard?  More importantly, what’s the deal with Jack’s Granddad, Ray?  It was no accident he was introduced during a season when Jack is convinced to return to the island, realizing it is (or isn’t, according to Faraday) his destiny to be there.  Everything about Christian has been, shall we say, mythical, as if he were a spiritual entity haunting/protecting the island.  And when Locke meets Christian in Jacob’s cabin (expecting to find Jacob, mind you), Christian more or less introduces himself as a representative for Jacob.  Isn’t it convenient that Jacob’s “spokesman” is related to Jack?  And getting back to Ray, if you recall there was a glint in his eye in the senior home, with references to both “escaping” and “disappearing.”  Whether obvious or not, there was a definite allusion to the fact that perhaps Ray had not only been to the island, but has a longing to return, to “escape” to the island where he can “disappear” completely.  At this point, if the island caretaker, according to all of our major characters familiar with the island, is Jacob, doesn’t it seem somewhat coincidental that Christian has appeared on (and off) the island as the stand-in caretaker?  What’s more, who did we see in Jacob’s cabin with Christian?  None other than Claire, who is his daughter and Jack’s half-sister (and, therefore, part of the Shephard bloodline).  (And this, of course, is a stretch, but the biblical Jacob was also a twin, brother of Esau.  Considering all the twin/sibling themes on this show, there’s another interesting comparison between Jack and Jacob, as they had Claire and Esau, respectively.)  There is, of course, another Shephard floating around this story arc, some kid who goes by the name “Aaron.”  So, let’s consider, then, the names Ray, Claire and Aaron (first from, then from


Gender: Masculine

Usage: English, French

Pronounced: RAY-mənd (English), ray-MAWN (French)  [key]

From the Germanic name Reginmund, composed of the elements ragin “advice” and mund “protector”. This name was introduced to England by the Normans in the form Reimund. It was borne by several medieval (mostly Spanish) saints, including Saint Raymond Nonnatus, the patron of midwives and expectant mothers, and Saint Raymond of Peñafort, the patron of canonists.

Claire (French form of Clara):

Gender: Feminine

Usage: Italian, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Catalan, Romanian, English

Pronounced: KLAH-rah (Italian, German, Spanish), KLER-ə (English), KLAR-ə (English)  [key]

Feminine form of the Late Latin name Clarus which meant “clear, bright, famous”. The name Clarus was borne by a few early saints. The feminine form was popularized by the 13th-century Saint Clare of Assisi (called Chiara in Italian), a friend and follower of Saint Francis, who left her wealthy family to found the order of nuns known as the Poor Clares. As an English name it has been in use since the Middle Ages, originally in the form Clare, though the Latinate spelling Clara became more popular in the 19th century.


Gender: Masculine

Usage: English, Biblical

Pronounced: AR-ən (English), ER-ən (English)  [key]

From the Hebrew name אַהֲרֹן (‘Aharon) which is most likely of unknown Egyptian origin. Other theories claim a Hebrew derivation, and suggest meanings such as “high mountain” or “exalted”. In the Old Testament this name was borne by the older brother of Moses and the first high priest of the Israelites. He acted as a spokesman for his brother, and carried a miraculous rod. As an English name, Aaron has been in use since the Protestant Reformation.

And then the meanings:


In German, the name Raymond means “wise protection.”

In French, the name Raymond means “Guards wisely.”


In French, the name Claire means “clear, bright.”


In Hebrew, the name Aaron means “enlightened.”

So, what does all of this mean?  Well, I guess I’m not completely sure.  But if I had to guess, and that’s exactly what I’m doing, there’s something undeniable about this idea that I can’t seem to shake.  “Jack” and “Jacob” are simply too close not to make some kind of connection.  What’s more, Jack’s family has literally inhabited the island, via Christian, Claire and even Jack himself.  Of course, Jack is also a nickname for John.  Hmmmm…..

Okay, that’s it for me.  Have at it, you vultures!



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