This week's episode is all about the origins of Jacob and the Man in Black. And by all, I mean entirely, as the Oceanic troupe, or any other regular character, are completely devoid of appearance in this episode, except for in the last 45 seconds, where we see a scene from the first season (Episode 6, "House of the Rising Son"). What gems can we learn from this episode? Well....a couple I guess, but not as many as I would have hoped for. SPOILERS AHEAD!
Episode 15 - "Across the Sea"
Zach says: The episode opens with a woman at sea, shipwrecked, who happens upon the island. She made it just in time, because shortly after finding her way to land, she is helped by some other woman, and then gives birth. Her name is Claudia, and she seems to be of Spanish descent. Anyhoo, she gives birth to twins, one of which happens to be named Jacob. The other....well....she wasn't expecting twins, so she didn't have a second name picked out. And, as it would seem, nobody else did, because that crafty Man in Black remains nameless throughout the episode....bogus.
Right after giving birth, the mysterious island woman, who I'll call 'Mother', murders Claudia, and takes the role of mother to these two children. She tells them that they are the only ones on the island, and that the island is the only thing in the world. She knows this not to be the truth, obviously, but lies anyways.
Throughout life, it would seem that MiB is the more rebellious child, while Jacob is the momma's boy. Jacob "doesn't know how to lie", while the MiB "is special". In their early teens, the boys happen upon a group of men. They are frightened and the mother uses the line that all men are the same, and "they come, destroy, corrupt," etc. This is when she shows the boys a mysterious cave, with a bright light emanating from it. This is the "heart of the island," and what they must protect. But she cannot do it forever, so one of them must.
Well, later on, MiB is with Jacob, and MiB sees Claudia, but Jacob doesn't see her. MiB follows Claudia to the men's camp, who are the same people from Claudia's ship wreck. Ghost Claudia also tells MiB she is his mother. This leads the MiB to want to live with these people, and leave the island, as he doesn't feel he belongs there. Jacob refuses to follow, even though he feels, rightly so, that 'Mother' doesn't even love him as much as MiB.
Thirty years later, MiB still living with men, and thinks they are rotten, but a means of getting off the island. In fact, he thinks he found a way. They are the ones who dug the wells, and they found the light, and for some reason, plan to put that big donkey wheel in place to channel the light and water and get off the island. Well, the mother finds out, and doesn't like this, so she knocks out MiB, kills everyone, and fills in the well.
MiB doesn't take too kindly, and kills the mother later. Well, Jacob doesn't take too kindly, and tosses MiB in the light cave they saw as children. Guess what effect that has? Well, not quite sure, but the result is that the smoke monster comes out of the well! Holy balls. The MiB though? Well, Jacob finds his, or someone's body who looks like the MiB, down river. So, Jacob carries his body back to camp, and makes a memorial with him and 'Mother'. Guess what? These are Adam and Eve, those two skeletons from way back in Season One, episode 6, "House of the Rising Sun".
Well, that's the end of the episode, and while it answers a few questions, it raises a hell of a lot more.
QUESTIONS ANSWERED: Who are Jacob and MiB; who are Adam and Eve; where did the smoke monster come from; what's with the donkey wheel?
QUESTIONS UNANSWERED: How long have Jacob and MiB been on the island; what is the smoke monster; what is the island; what is MiB's name; why all that Egyptian stuff?
QUESTIONS PRESENTED: WTF, is MiB dead, I'm so confused; why would Jacob bring people to the island if he's trying to protect it; why does MiB want to kill Jacob; what is this light; who was that crazy 'Mother' woman and how did she fill that well herself; what's with that wine?
So, basically, this episode brings more questions than answers, and with only one episode and the finale left, you would think there would be some more answers. We all wanted to know about the origins of Jacob and MiB, but I kind of feel this episode was like Richard's. Sure, we want to know about their pasts, but what REAL answers did we get from these episodes? Not a whole lot, and this one in particular, just left me with a heck of a lot of questions and wild theories that I'm not sure will be answered. I wish they could have gotten to the point sooner, but I only feel this way because I'm not sure they can tie it ALL together with the time they have left.
They have to talk about what is going on with dead MiB, and who is MiB now; why are Jacob and MiB pissed at each other and why is MiB considered evil if he just wants off the island; AND THEN REGULAR QUESTIONS, like stuff with the Oceanic crew; what's going to happen with Jin and Sun's baby, and Aaron; what's with Ben and Widmore; what happened with Richard, Ben, and Miles, etc, etc. Oh, and how the heck are they gonna tie the alternate universe together?!?!? I don't see how they can really answer all this crap, and mostly because most of the questions sprout from this very episode.
Anyways, random things of note in this week's episode, aside from previously mentioned quotes: Jacob and MiB are always themed in white and black, even from birth; 'Mother' speaking Latin it seems at the beginning; 'Mother' says the children will never have to worry about what "dead" is; 'Mother' made it so the boys can't hurt each other; MiB can see dead people, but Jacob can't; MiB is somehow special; MiB has that dagger; the light is "the source; life, death, rebirth". And yeah. And one other thing, is that before 'Mother' died, she said "Thank you," to MiB. Why? Did she WANT to die, but couldn't kill herself, so had to get someone else to do it? Something's going on....
Zach's Score: 7.5/10
JDW says: Zach and I discussed this episode a lot before he made his write up, so a lot of what we both had to say was covered already. But, if anything I'm conflicted by this episode. I've always been a fan of the episodes that look deeper into the mythology of the island and it's inhabitants. I love seeing parts of the island in the past knowing what I know ahead of time, and there's a wonderful sense of discovery. "Across the Sea" definitely has that, but at the same time, it was kind of "so what?" in the sense that I don't think enough was answered, and with just one episode and the series finale left, I think the focus has to be shifted to the "now what" of the current island dwellers, and not so much the past.
And seriously, unless the names of 'Mother' and The Man in Black are actually Claire and Aaron and there's some crazy explanation for their changed appearence, I see absolutely no reason why we can't get an actually name for the Man in Black already. As so as the second baby was born (I was actually expecting Claudia to birth smoke, which would've been awesome/horrifying) I got all excited for her to finally say a name, and then they went the BS route of saying, "I only thought of one name..." c'mon, JUST TELL ME!!!
JDW's Score: 8.5/10
Overall Score: 8/10
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