While "What Kate Does" does not exactly provide us with any Island-sinking answers (ba doom, ch), it does illuminate some of the bigger questions Losties may have about, well, what the heck is going on. Rather than recapping the episode, let me offer up some theories based on what I took out of tonight's episode.
I do NOT read spoilers, so this is not giving anything away for yet-to-be-aired episodes.
Smokie was Christian before he was Locke: I postulated this toward the conclusion of Season 5, but tonight's episode solidified this theory in my mind. Here's my train of thought...
- The Others claim that, like what will happen to Sayid, a growing darkness has grown inside of Claire completely changing her. They call this an "infection."
- When we met Rousseau a long, long time ago, she claimed that all her shipmates became "sick," and tried to kill her.
- Rousseau's friends became "infected" after being consumed by the Black Smoke upon venturing near the Temple's perimeter wall.
- Un-Locke is the Black Smoke, so he "infects" these people.
- Claire was last seen on the Island with Christian in "Jacob's" Cabin unusually calm. Her contact with Christian infected her.
In the Season 5 finale, Ilana exits the Cabin and says that Jacob has not been there for a long time. While we cannot quantify that in any way, let's assume she reall means a long time - like many years. That means that it was inhabited by someone, which in this case, must be the Black Smoke. Christian appeared in the Cabin numerous times, and it makes sense that he would use this mysterious Cabin as his hideout. Which also means...
Everything in previous seasons somehow makes sense: A shocking thing to think about for this show, but hear me out.
Let's assume that my first theory about Smokie inhabiting the Cabin is correct. Since Smokie has dedicated himself entirely to creating a loophole to kill Jacob, there were two events that occured intentionally because of him
1. The Black Smoke talked to Locke and not Ben: This was a huge event in the series because this is what really instigated the Ben-Locke feud and the power struggle between them for the Island. Smokie clearly knew what he was doing in manipulating these two men against each other, and it's safe to assume that his choice of Locke was no accident. Richard went to visit Locke off the Island several times and never saw anything special, but Smokie's manipulation of Locke ultimately started a series of events that led to Jack having faith in Locke, then conveying that confidence to Richard, who ultimately entrusts Locke who is actually Un-Locke in 2007. Got that? Good - now on to...
2. The Black Smoke intentionally listened to Ben: My friend reminded me after the season premiere that Ben was able to summon the Smoke Monster to kill the Freighter cronies - but how could Ben do that if the Smoke Monster is clearly a free spirit? As far as I can tell, this was all part of Smokie getting Ben to trust it/him. By working at Ben's bidding, Smokie was able to instill fear in Ben that ultimately led to Ben submitting to Un-Locke after encountering the Black Smoke manifested as his murdered daughter underneath the Temple. Since Ben (and Locke) is really just a pawn in this whole game, Smokie was willing to do whatever it took to get Ben on his side ultimately.
Kate is going to end up with Aaron: Don't know how or why - but the two parallel universes right now (which I still maintain must intersect or collide together at some point this season) have many parallel events. Charlie claims that he was "supposed" to die, and he probably will at some point. Claire names the baby Aaron and forges a relationship with Kate; I'm guessing Claire dies in childbirth (the ultimately irony because she was the only one to have a baby on the Island and survive, but she cannot off the Island) and Kate ends up with Aaron somehow.
Sawyer and Sayid are going to cause trouble: Sawyer hates the world right now, and cleary disdains the Temple's occupants. Assuming his path crosses with that of Un-Locke, I think that Sawyer's allegiances will be seriously tested.
Based on Un-Locke's speech to Ben on the trek to the giant four-toed statue last year, Un-Locke's main hatred for Jacob can be traced back to his feeling that Jacob does not deserve godly treatment. As Un-Locke asks in last year's season finale, why would Ben not want to kill Jacob after all that he has put Ben through?
Let's apply that same logic to Sawyer. In a sense, everything happened to Sawyer because of Jacob - his coming to the Island, all of the events that transpired, and ultimately Juliet's death. Unlike actual Locke, Un-Locke desperately wants to leave the Island, and all Sawyer wanted to do was leave the Island to establish a life with Juliet. Through Un-Locke's probing, Sawyer will scapegoat the Island for everything that happened and cause some major trouble for, well, everyone who is a disciple of Jacob.
Meanwhile, Sayid has a growing darkness inside of him, so he clearly is going to be an issue. The most ironic dialogue of the night may have been Hurley asking Sayid if he is a zombie because, well, based on what we've seen of Smokie-infected people, that's basically what he'll be. I'm thinking Hurley is going to be put in a very precarious situation with Sayid - Jacob was insistent on saving him and operated through Hurley, but the Temple inhabitants are insistant on killing him. Hurley is extremely loyal, and this could be a serious deciding moment for his character.
So, what are all your thoughts on this past episode? Any theories for "The Substitute"?