So the wife and I have been watching Lost on Channel 4, leading to much speculation as to what exactly is going on. One possible urban-legend doing the rounds is that every characters back story incidently features one of the other characters from the crash – so in the background, or on the TV, or something.

This got me thinking about what all the characters have in common, and of those whose back-story we’ve seen so far on UK terrestrial (Jack, Kate, Sun and Jin, Charlie, Locke), they all have two things in common; namely (1) they were on the flight under ‘negative’ circumstances or to put it another way wished they weren’t on the flight in some sense, and (2) that they all were nearly not on the flight at all (which is not unrelated).

  1. Jack – (1) Was on the flight going home with his Dad’s body – obviously he’d had rather have found his Dad alive and well. (2) He was very nearly refused the flight because he was transporting a body.
  2. Kate – (1) Had been arrested. (2) If she’d have left at night instead of waiting ’til morning for a lift with the farmer, or indeed had not stopped to pull him from the car crash, she wouldn’t have been on the flight.
  3. Sun and Jin – (1) Clearly Sun is very unhappy in her marriage, and Jin appeared to be in Oz on a “job”, so I guess neither really wanted to be there at all (2) Sun very nearly ran away just before getting on the flight, which of course would have stopped Jin getting on too.
  4. Charlie – (1) He wanted his brother with him to reform the band, but his brother refused, so Charlie left “in anger”. (2) He had the opportunity to stay with his brother and get clean, but chose instead to go back to LA.
  5. Locke – (1) Was refused from the “walkabout”, and so forced just to fly home. (2) He equally well might have been allowed on the trip, hence obviously not on the flight.

The flaws in this thesis are the Sky Marshall, who was clearly delighted to be on the flight (but arguably wasn’t a survivor of the crash, and who nearly wasn’t on the flight for the same reasons as Kate), and the reasoning for Jin is a little ropey, as he probably somewhere between indifferent and glad to be going on the flight to wherever they were going; unless it was to another job, I suppose. On the other hand, we know that Michael and his son were on the flight under sad circumstances, with the death of Michael’s ex-wife, even though we haven’t had his back-story yet.

We shall see as the back-stories continue…