DOC JENSEN'S DECODING OF THE LOST LAST SUPPER!
I had a whole different column planned and nearly written for today. It contained an essay-theory on the themes of redemption and addiction in Lost. It was going to reveal secret themes embedded in one of the most famous scenes of the Lost pilot. It was also going to introduce you to a super-fan named Lyla Miklos, who created a program for an entire church service using characters, motifs, and scenes from Lost. But all of that will have to wait until next week. Because this past weekend I was completely derailed by the work of decoding the latest Lost promo, a mythically loaded cast photo inspired by Leonardo's ''The Last Supper'' a fitting reference for a show that has turned so many of us into clue-hunting (and conspiracy-seeing) Robert Langdons.
Now I know there are bunches of Battlestar Galactica loyalists out there crying some kind of rip-off foul, as that show used the same concept to tout its final season. I say, BFD, you BSGers! Look, I must admit to preferring the dark, brooding visual look of the BSG image to the cheery pastels of the Lost image. That aside, I give the edge to Lost because its mythology interfaces with the text and subtext of Leonardo's painting and the Biblical story of ''The Last Supper'' to create meaningful resonance and, quite possibly, a bevy of season 6 teases. Moreover, I think it's possible that Lost actually wants to invite a comparison to BSG. After all, Lost is famous for explicitly and implicitly referencing other pop culture. Here, we're talking about two very similar images associated with two different stories that exist in separate creative universes. As we approach season 6, the question we're all asking is: Did Juliet effectively create a new time line a new, separate universe when she detonated Jughead in the Island's past? We'll find out.
PAST LITERARY REFERENCE REVISITED!
Remember when Young Ben gave Sayid a copy of Carlos Castaneda's A Separate Reality last season in ''He's Our You''? Clearly we now see that was but foreshadowing for the cliffhanger, no? Yes? Carlos Castawho? Errp?!
And hey: I'm still open to learning that the Island is built on the remains of a big spaceship that Lost and BSG share the same creative universe, and we'll learn that instead of hyperspacing away from Earth, that Cylon baseship crashed into the ocean and seeded the Island we now know in Lost. Yep: Totally plausible.
Some context before we decode. ''The Last Supper'' refers to the meal Jesus shared with his 12 disciples the night before Judas Iscariot betrayed him for some silver. It is a key event in Jesus' ''passion'' week, the stretch of days in which he was put on trial, crucified, and resurrected from the dead. ''The Last Supper'' is the basis for the Christian sacrament of Communion (the consuming of bread and wine, symbolic of Christ's body and blood, broken and shed as sacrifice for mankind's sins). Of course, it also inspired the legend of the Holy Grail. Some will say that Jesus was celebrating the Passover Seder, though there's dispute over whether the dates sync up. Still, it's worth noting what Passover was all about: It was the commemoration of the night in which the spirit of the Lord zipped through Egypt slaughtering the first born of every living thing, human or animal. The only people/animals spared were those that lived in homes that had been marked by lamb's blood. The event inspired Pharaoh to free the Hebrews from captivity and launched the Exodus to Canaan. And they say the Bible is boring...
One more thing: Remember that Leonardo painted a few other notable works, too, including ''Mona Lisa.'' And so we begin here:
JOHN LOCKE HAS A SECRET
Who is this John Locke that is sitting in Jesus Christ's chair, dressed in peaceful sky blue and sporting that ''I know something you don't know'' Mona Lisa smile? For me, that's the Big Idea that the painting is expressing. There are two possible answers, and both may be true. If this John Locke is our beloved man-of-faith castaway, last seen lifeless and dumped on the Island sand, then the painting offers the promise of resurrection. If this John Locke is the shape-shifting entity that has adopted Locke's guise, we must ponder the significance of casting him/it in the role of Jesus. For me, the question would be this: Is he Christ or Antichrist? It's easy to believe in the latter. His plot to slay idealistic Jacob and the relish he took in watching him get knifed seemed downright Satanic. But I remain open to the possibility that FLocke/Man In Black is the good guy in this feud that he's the Christ come to set right the chaos created by rogue angel Jacob. (More on this in a second.) Either way Christ or Antichrist this new John Locke is going to be a terrifying creature, especially if my next conjecture is true.
NEXT PAGE: John Locke: Here comes the judge