Sunday, April 11, 2010

11-Dark Tower - More Gunslinger Candidates? And Desmond is Back Baby! All Lost Fans Can Now Live "Happily Ever After"

A frequent theme of my blogs is comparing Lost to Stephen King's Dark Tower Story. A reoccuring topic in this comparison has been my attempt to show similarities between the main characters of the two stories and my attempt to identify the hero of Lost as a mirror image of The Gunslinger, Roland Deschains.

I have previously reviewed the following Lost Gunslinger Candidates:
Jack Shepard, James 'Sawyer' Ford, John Locke, Ben Linus & Ilana.

But just about anyone's favorite Lost character could also be a candidate for filling the shoes of Stephen King's Gunslinger.
I would be negligent if I did not briefly mention some of the other possibilities.

Roland Deschain - Gunslinger (spoiler alert for Dark Tower)
The Gunslinger is the hero in the Dark Tower Books. His name is Roland Deschaines, the last gunslinger. A direct decendant of Arthur Eld (King Arthur in a parallel universe or multiverse). Roland life is one of fate bound tragedy. He fights a desperate battle to save his world but fails. His father dies and his country is overthrown and all his friends die. He is tricked into killing his own mother and sacrifies the woman he loves in a duty bound attempt to forstall the plot threatening his country. He rallies his friends and forces only to see them all die. He alone survives.

The Dark Tower begins with the gunslinger pursuing the 'man in black' (Marten Broadcloak/Walter O'Din/Randall Flagg) across the desert. As the story of the Dark Tower unfolds (repleat with many flashback stories) we learn that Roland is a hard, bitter man who saw the death of his family, his country, his loves, his friends, even his duty has died as he has no one left to serve. He pursues 'the man in black' but his real quest and only motivation is the reach the Dark Tower. His overarching belief is in Ka or Fate. Roland's greatest triumph is the bonds of love that he forges with the companions that fate draws to him. In fact, he succeeds at his quest because he is willing to turn away and risk his quest in order to help out remnants of the world desperately fighting mysterious forces. In this way Roland's duty as a gunslingeer is rekindled and he earns the loyalty of his friends who become gunslingers in their own right and they risk their lives for his quest and to serve the poor folk in their desperate struggle to survive. In short, when the Gunslinger turns away from his quest he not only discovers the means to attain his quest, but more profoundly, he embraces life and love and transforms his quest from one of blind stuborn refusal to yield (crushing all those who cross his path) to a renewal of hope and reaffirmation of life, love and loyalty.

A critical turn of events shows that Roland's world exists in a multiverse where traveling between worlds, universes and time is possible. Indeed Roland accidentally meddles in time when he prevents the murder of Jake Chambers resulting in a reality changing event. Jake never enters Roland's world and Roland never sacrifices him. But Roland and Jake both develop a type of schizophrenia caused by their awewareness of events which they recall but which have not occured in the reality they now occupy. They are not 'cured' until Jake is drawn back to Roland's world and joins his ka'tet (brotherhood of fate) and his quest.
 So who in Lost could be Roland the Gunslinger?
Well Desmond Hume has re-entered Lost and is currently at the center of the struggle on the Island.
Desmond David Hume
Little has been revealed about Desmond's early life. Desmond says he wasn't able to finish university because he had to support his three brothers after something happened to their father.  Desmond mentioned to Jack as he's tending his injured ankle that he to had almost become a doctor. It is mentioned that he served as a set designer for the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Much of Desmond's life is filled with failure. He looses his nerve and runs away from marrying Ruth. H gets kicked out of the monestary he ran away to. Meets Penny but for unknown reasons, ruins their relationship when he can not win the approval of Penny's dad, Charles Widemore.
He joins the Royal Scots Regiment but get's arrested and dishonerably discharged. Charles Widemore is determined to prevent him from seeing Penny and Desmond decides to 'show him' by entering a sailboat race around the world that Widemore is sponsoring. He meets Penny while training but says that he must get back his honor in order for him to be with her. He asks her to wait for him.
His boat crashes on the Island and he joins Kelvin in the Swan Hatch pushing the button for 3 years. He accidentally kills Kelvin, and in doing so believes he causes the 'incident' which crashes Oceanic 815. Later he joins Locke in preventing the button from being pushed and turns the fail safe key when all hell breaks loose.The Swan to implodes, he looses his clothes and his mind travels back to 1996ish when he is living with Penny and poised to ask her to marry him. When he goes to buy the rign he meets Eloise Widemore who says he's not supposed to marry Penny. He gets his head cracked with a cricket bat and his mind returns to the Island. He begins to see flashes of the future. He begins a quest to save Charlie's life, and is sorely tempted to let Charlie die when he sees a flash where Penny and his is reuinited. He continues to save Charlie's life until Charlie sacrifices himself in the Looking Glass Hatch.
When he's on the helicopter going toward the freighter his mind starts to jump in time again and he recieves the help of Daniel Farraday in finding his constant and his lost love, Penny. He survives getting shot by Ben, saves Penny and his boy Charlie's life and is in the hospital.
In "The Package" we find he has been kidnapped by Charles Widemore and is back on the Island. But Desmond is also in the Flash Sideways and as events unfold, he is subjected to an electromagnetic surge in order to test some plan of Widemore's.
It appears that his mind is transported to the Flash Sideways where he meets Charlie and Dan 'Widemore' and begins to remember his life in the other reality. He finds Penny 'Milton' and when he touches her hand, jumps back to the Island where he appears to either have some foreknowledge or is comfortable looking death in the eye as he follows Sayid to MIB/F-Locke's camp.
As "Happily Ever After" ends, Desmond appears in the Flash Sideways with a renewed purpose as he asks "Minkowski to get him the passenger manifest because he has something he wants to show them. I personally rank Desmond as one of the 'weakest' candidates for the Gunslinger, but this is almost entirely based on the lack of key information regarding his background. He certainly has reentered the center stage of Lost and is one of the critical characters as the saga of Lost unfolds.
Regarding "Happily Ever After" (Excellent - A)
--I really enjoyed other Lost fans comments pointing out the incongruities regarding Desmond in the sidways reality. (wedding ring, change of clothes on/off plane, beardy stuble/clean shaved) Just enough craziness to wonder if there are 2 physical Desmonds walking around in both realities?

--Oh and did the elento-magno vault not remind you of the cabin? Desmond’s gonna get stuck in Jacob’s cabin til Hurley finds it and then things are gonna change! But I have no idea where the next step on Lost will go, but I am darn sure that somebody is going to end up 'trapped' in Jacob's Cabin and that Jack will end up back in the jungle in the 1st episode looking up through the trees and run off to fix something.

--And what is the deal with Eloise? I thought her foreknowledge came from her getting Daniel's notebook when she kills him in the 70s but she seems like she knows what's going on in the sideways reality too! And she's acting just enough like a hard case that I wonder if Smokey's long lost mother might really care which side the butter knife's edge points to? Hmmm. Wonder if she is the master mind of all the events on Lost? Wonder if Eloise is just trying to get her estranged family members back together?

But I can't wait to find out. I hope Zoe plays a larger role in the final episodes and isn't just a red shirt with a speaking part. At least I hope she finds time to take a shower before Sayid comes back to line the runway with the bodies of Widemore's Others.

Hugo 'Hurley' Reyes
Hugo is a pivotal character on Lost. He has been instrumental in shaping the lives of many of his friends.
He conned James into redemption, and kept the Losties' spirits alive.

He has a special communion with the Island and can find Jacob's moving cabin. He is able to see and converse with dead people on (and off) the island, and is either amazingly lucky or incredibly cursed.

Hurley is a true friend and a nobel heart

He will lend you the shirt off his back or be your friend if you are new on the beach,
He has suffered loss of love and friends.

He is an emerging leader taking responsibility and has saved the lives of his friends more than once.

and he never misses at 'horse'

no one could fill his shoes

Kate Austen (cute but deadly)
Sayid Jarrah (gunslinger turned bad-never has a man needed saving more than Sayid)

Juliet Burke (née Carlson) (a life saver, heart breaker, don't you mess around with her!)

Richard Alpert (a man of mystery, long suffering, devoted and loyal)
all are candidates for the Gunslinger or as members of fate bound companions

Bottom line is that so many of our Lost characters have lost all that they have loved and could fit the bill for some alternative reality Gunslinger, especially if Lost' story has been all about setting up the Gunslinger's background and if the show ends with the Gunslinger's mission and quest just unfolding.

take it easy,

it ain't all half-bad
mr badd
p.s. leave me a comment or e-mail me at -- I guarantee you'll get a response, just can't guarantee it will make sense
stay away from the Evil Twin "Bad Lost Theories" Site. There is only 1 'd' in Bad, so how could it be any good?

1 comment:

  1. Desmond has come full circle. He starts out a lost man, running from his impending marriage to Ruth. Finds a religious calling and joins a monestary. Gets kicked out of the monestary, meets and falls in love with Penny, breaks her heart, joins the military, gets kicked out, decides he needs to win a sailboat race to get back his honor. Crashes on island, pushes the button, stops pushing the button, turns the key, relives the moment he wanted to ask penny to marry him and doesn't...again, saves Charlie, gets reunited with his love and constant, gets off island, gets dragged back to island and finds 'religious' calling to 'enlighten' the passengers of oceanic 815. But what does he want to show them, and why
    is he so calm and accepting? Does he have some foreknowledge of what is to
    come or has he received some dark enlightenment, like Colonel Kurtz or Sayid?
    Will Desmond work to get Claire & Arron on the helicopter like he told Charlie or is he walking a darker path?
    Desmond Hume = he's demon mud?