In previous installments of what is rapidly turning into a series of posts, I have elaborated on my theory that the Zombie Season joke of Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse might actually have been a tongue in cheek clue as to the direction the ABC TV series LOST has been going. We know some characters have had brushes with death. We know some characters have actually died and yet are still walking around. However, I'm not sure if anyone has ever taken a running tally. What follows is an attempt to look at all major characters and significant other characters to see if we can determine who is still alive, and who only appears to be alive and is in fact probably undead.
Now for this to make any sense I have to assume that if a character had a brush with death, but we're not certain that they died, I have to put them in a kinda limbo maybe column. If we saw a character literally die, and then come back, I have to put them in the undead column. If there's no evidence of either then they are in the live column but keep in mind, we haven't seen every moment of every day of the lives of these characters. Just because I can't recall a time when Jack or Kate died, doesn't mean they didn't. It just means the writers/producers haven't showed it to us yet. Also, this is based on what we know currently, and can change at the drop of a hat after season six begins again. In all cases, if I say someone's alive, that's only because we don't know any better. Illumination of events pertaining to someone's past could change that.
So let's play ALIVE OR DEAD OR UNDEAD OR WHO KNOWS?
Jack "Doc" Shepherd - ALIVE (maybe)
When Oceanic 815 crashed, Jack blacked out and woke up in the jungle, a long distance away from the crash site. He fell out of the plane as the fuselage and a wing ended up near the shoreline. It's not incredibly likely, but it is possible that Jack died in that instant, and some unknown force artificially revived him. The same can be said for many if not all inhabitants of Oceanic 815, but particularly Jack. The writers purposefully had him far from the actual crash site. The writers also purposefully had Jack materialize on the Island away from Hurley & Kate when they appeared in the past after disappearing off Ajira 316. For now we have to put him in the Alive column, but the writers have given themselves room to later claim he's been (un)dead all this time.
Kate Austen - ALIVE
There has been no instance throughout the course of the series where the writers have purposefully shown us Kate dead and artificially brought back. This is not to say it hasn't happened. It's possible this has happened to all Oceanic 815 survivors, and we just haven't seen it yet.
John "Sawyer" Ford - ALIVE
Sawyer has led a dangerous life, and has made many enemies. It's very possible he's had a brush with death and the writers never showed it to us. However, based on what we've seen thus far, he's fit as a fiddle.
Hugo "Hurley" Reyes - WHO KNOWS? (undead)
Several times there has been a mention of an accident that happened to Hurley after his father disappeared and before he went to the Santa Rosa Mental Health Institute. A deck that was built to hold eight people fell when twenty-three people, including himself, were on it at the same time. Two people died. It's believed that he survived this unscathed, but felt depressed afterwards and insisted that the incident was his fault. Because of that, his mother had him committed. While in the facility, Hurley began to see someone named Dave who later turned out to be an imaginary friend. His doctor prescribed Clonazepam and also proved to Hurley that Dave was not real. After the crash, Hurley started seeing Dave again. Upon his return from the Island, Hurley began having interactions with friends he knew to be dead. Either he didn't die on that deck, and he's very much alive but crazy, or he died on that deck was artificially revived and can talk to the dead because he himself is undead. It should also be noted that Hurley has a surprisingly strange case of luck that has kept him alive multiple times when he should be dead. Some would attribute this to The Numbers that he used to win the lottery. It's also possible that he is a temporal anomaly and cannot die until some event in his future has been accomplished, probably on the Island.
John Locke - DEAD (kinda)
His corpse has been shown to us at the end of season five. However, it's possible that corpse is an elaborate fake. There are multiple peripheral characters (Widmore, Linus, Jacob, etc) who have the resources. It's just not very likely. There is a humanoid posing as John Locke but the final moments of the season five finale pretty much cemented the idea that UnLocke is not Locke, but rather a manifestation of Jacob's dark nemesis (Esau/Blackie). However, Locke's been undead before. We've witnessed John Locke fall out of a seven story window. Jacob visited him in that instant, and revived him artificially. From that moment onward, John Locke was definitively undead. He seemed to retain his own mental and spiritual faculties, but looks could be deceiving. His legs didn't work until he got on The Island. Once there, he began acting strangely and could walk again. It's possible that Locke has existed throughout the series as an undead pawn in the game between Jacob and Blackie. How much he's been himself and how much he's been manipulated is open for debate. At one point, Ben shot Locke in the gut and left him for dead, but he managed to survive that gunshot wound, presumably because Ben shot him in the kidney area and John no longer had a kidney because he donated it to his father years before. To the best of our knowledge, from the point when Ben strangled John in the hotel room off Island, to the end of Season five inside the statue, John has been dead dead, and Blackie has been impersonating Locke (aka UnLocke). The thing is, if John Locke could be artificially revived by Jacob before, what's to stop that from happening again?
Sayid Jarrah - ALIVE
Again, we've seen no near death experiences (NDE) and have no reason to believe he's dead or undead. That could change, and being an Oceanic815 survivor, he may have died then only to be revived by "The Island." Keep in mind that at the end of Season Five, Sayid wasn't looking so good. He'd been shot, had lost a lot of blood, and Jack didn't have the necessary time or resources to do anything for him. It's possible that Sayid could die in the season premiere, and then be artificially revived by The Island or whatever.
Jin-Soo Kwon - ALIVE
Again, we've seen no near death experiences (NDE) and have no reason to believe he's dead or undead. That could change, and being an Oceanic815 survivor, he may have died then only to be revived by "The Island."
Sun-Hwa Kwon - ALIVE
Again, we've seen no near death experiences (NDE) and have no reason to believe she's dead or undead. That could change, and being an Oceanic815 survivor, she may have died then only to be revived by "The Island."
Charlie Pace - DEAD (possibly UnDead)
Okay here it gets a little tricky. First off, he was a user. The writers could add to the mythology of the series that Charlie had a NDE years before Oceanic815. Failing that, and ignoring the face Charlie could have died and been artificially revived during the plane crash, we also witnessed (All The Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues) Ethan hang Charlie from a tree, which should have broken his neck. Jack tried for several minutes to revive Charlie with no success. Then Charlie started breathing again. It's presumed because of Jack's efforts, but it may have easily been despite them. Charlie was also in the Swan station when it blew. Locke, Charlie, Desmond, and Eko all survived an explosion relatively unscathed. Charlie seemed to have lost his hearing for a bit but it was temporary. We did not witness the actual explosion. We saw Desmond was naked when he came back, but Locke, Charlie and Eko were fully clothed. It's possible that Charlie didn't die in this instance because, like Locke and perhaps like Eko, he's already dead and being artificially kept alive. After the Swan explosion, Desmond began experiencing flashes of premonitions that mostly involved Charlie dying. He endeavored to save Charlie multiple times from these deaths. Finally they both realized that they were only postponing the inevitable. Charlie was destined to die soon, and he chose to die in the Looking Glass station, in order to save Desmond. We witnessed Charlie drown after Patchy blew up the porthole to the station. It is possible that if Charlie was already undead, having a body filled with water is only a temporary state of being unconscious. If Patchy already knew this, it is not out of the question to believe that after Desmond vacated the station, Patchy could have returned, fetched out Charlie's body, then dragged him back on shore to revive him. If Charlie's undead, he could still be very much alive. So all those rumors and speculation about Dominic Monaghan being in the final season? Not completely outside the realm of possibility.
Claire Littleton - WHO KNOWS?
This could explain why the last time we saw Claire she was in a good mood, despite the fact she had seemingly purposefully left her only son behind to be in Kate's care. If she knew Charlie was still alive, she might have a smile on her face. Claire disappeared late in season four and hasn't been seen since. We saw no indications that she had NDEs prior to becoming pregnant, and it's hard to believe that someone artificially kept alive would be able to give birth. In fact, that might explain why Ben Linus' people were having difficulty keeping a baby to term. Perhaps if a woman had been on the Island during the Purge, she was dead but revived by Jacob or The Island or whatever, and therefore an undead woman's womb would be unsuitable for a proper pregnancy. Claire didn't have that problem, having conceived before arriving on the Island. So we're pretty certain she was very much alive at least until she delivered Aaron. The last time we saw her she was hanging with her dad Christian Shepherd, who is decidedly UnDead. So her current state could be alive, dead, or undead. Presumably we will see Claire in some capacity in season six because the actress has already been brought back on the payroll.
Benjamin Linus - ALIVE
As a child, Linus was shot by Sayid and taken to The Temple. Richard made it very clear that if Ben was revived by The Temple, he's never be normal again. He'd be one of The Hostiles. I want to believe that this makes him UnDead. However, the same thing essentially happened to Rousseau's crew, and she was able to irrevocably kill them. So that puts a hole in my theory that Ben is among the UnDead. Also, as an adult he was dying of cancer and Jack cured him of that. Hard to believe someone artificially alive would be given cancer by the Island. Not completely out of the question but a little difficult to make an audience swallow.
Juliet Burke - WHO KNOWS?
We have been given no indication that during her past prior to The Island Juliet had any NDEs. We witnessed her husband get run over by a bus, and her infertile sister was dying of cancer, but that's as close as Juliet came to death. Once on the Island, Juliet again seemed to be spared death herself, tho it has seemed to have befallen all the other Others she used to call friends. At the very end of season five, Juliet fell into a hole which seemed to have mortally wounded her. Believing a bomb could reset time, she picked up a rock and began banging on it because it had not yet gone off. Some believe this caused the bomb to go off, which may have killed her or it may have reset time. Others believe the bomb did not go off as it was never meant to (Sayid purposefully made a dud because he thinks Jack is insane) and Juliet has been transported into the present time. In any case, if she doesn't get medical care soon she's going to die. Since the actress has recently gotten a lucrative job on a tv series called V, it's doubtful she's going to be a prominent member of the cast in Lost's final season.
Desmond Hume - Alive (possibly undead)
It appears from a writing standpoint that this character has purposefully been written out of the narrative, and if they never revisit Desmond I would completely not mind. I like where they left him. Sure he's in the hospital but it was a superficial wound. He'll be fine. He'll be with his wife and kid and live happily ever after. I want that to be the case. I'm more of a Penny/Desmond shipper than I am a Kate and Jack or Kate and Sawyer shipper. It wouldn't matter so much to me what happened to the rest of the characters in the story, so long as Desmond & Penny come out of all this unscathed. However, I fear that's not going to be the case. Mrs. Hawking told Desmond that the Island wasn't through with him. When I look at the story between Charlie and Desmond I strongly feel that Desmond either purposefully or accidentally traded Charlie's life for his own. That in some previous timeline which is now gone, Desmond died in the Looking Glass station. However, his time flashes allowed him to save Charlie's life multiple times, but only temporarily. So the two of them got to choose when Charlie died, and Charlie died saving Desmond. Had Charlie not been there, Desmond would never be with Penny. So he's been given a reprieve, but like all the characters in the show his fate is forever entangled with the Island. It will eventually call him back, and when he does go back again, the Island won't let him survive. Like Michael, he'll be fated to do something that will kill him, but at least in this storyline, he was able to have a son, and have some precious time with the woman he loves. The Island can now take his life, but it can't take away the happiness he shared with her. So in a way he wins no matter what now.
Miles Straume - Alive (possibly undead)
Like Hurley (strange luck), Desmond (time flashes), Michael (temporary invulnerability), and Locke (multiple abilities), Miles has a special ability. It seems to be specific to being near a dead body. He's able to read from a body's remains when and how it died. We don't know why, but I'm of the opinion that all of these abilities are somehow tied into the temporal anomaly that is the Island. I don't believe people are getting powers because the Island is sentient and is granting them. I believe that these abilities that some characters have are side effects of the temporal anomaly. Some event in the past or future of each of these characters affected the individual's entire existence. Not just in a three dimensional cause and effect manner. These people have been affected fourth dimensionally. Now, Carl Sagan gave an explanation of the Flatland metaphor that describes how a two dimensional sentient being might react if exposed to a three dimensional perspective after living a life in 2D and I feel that might be what's going on here. When a 3D being is exposed temporarily to a 4D reality, it's possible that exposure affects the 3D entity's entire existence, because the fourth dimension is essentially time. So if you were exposed to time in middle age, it could cause anomalies that would have manifested from your birth to your death in unexpected ways. So Miles may never have died and been reborn, but like the other characters I mentioned, I believe he's either been exposed or will be exposed to a temporal anomaly in a manner that causes him to have this ability.
Michael Dawson - Dead (possibly undead)
As I just explained, Michael's one of the characters who may have been exposed at some point to a temporal anomaly. Because of that, when he left the Island and failed to find a way back to his life, he repeatedly failed to kill himself, because he wasn't able to die until certain events transpired back near the Island. This could mean he was always meant to die on that frieghter, but time was altered when he managed to escape the Island. Ben let him go, perhaps knowing that fate would eventually force Michael back when it was time.
Walter Lloyd - Alive (off island probably not coming back)
Like Desmond, I'm satisfied that Walt managed to escape the Island with only mental scars. It could have been a lot worse for him. I would not mind if his story is left where it is. However, there's another part of me that would like some completeness to the story by somehow using the descendants of the Losties to come save them. We currently have Walt, Ji Yeon Kwon, and Aaron off the Island. Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse have said that time travel is done. So I guess it's out of the question that these three individuals would return to the Island after having grown twenty years or more. Still, I like the elegance of the idea. The children come to save their parents. We'll see.
Shannon Rutherford - Dead (could be brought back)
Boone Carlyle - Dead (could be brought back)
Ana Lucia Cortez - Dead (could be brought back)
Daniel Faraday - Dead (could be brought back)
Mister Ekko - Dead (could be brought back)
Libby - Dead (could be brought back)
Charlotte Lewis - Dead (could be brought back)
Nikki Fernandez - Dead (could be brought back)
Paulo - Dead (could be brought back)
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