Lost: Five Questions about "The Economist"
Lost: Five Questions about "The Economist"
Not only was the third episode of Lost's fourth season a great showcase for Sayid, but it also played out like a Hitchcock film crossed with an hour of Alias.  We got the chance to see Sayid trotting the globe as a suave undercover agent, but the big twist at the end was that he was taking orders from Ben.  What drove the former Iraqi soldier to start working for one of his worst enemies?  It's a big question, and one that we probably won't get an answer to in the five remaining installments of the current season.

Looking back on the episode, we've managed to come up with five burning questions about "The Economist."  Read on for crazy theories involving such topics as teleportation and Billy Dee Williams.

1)  What did "RG" stand for on Naomi's bracelet?

Poor, dead Naomi.  Her bracelet was inscribed with the message "N, I'll always be with you. RG," but who is this RG person?  Many people think these initials belong to Regina, who, shortly after finding out about Naomi's death, wrapped herself in chains and jumped into the ocean.  This seems like the most probable explanation to me, though we've yet to learn Regina's last name.

2)  Why does Jacob's cabin mysteriously disappear?

There are many strange mysteries on Lost that, even if I don't know the answers to them, I can at least imagine some possible explanations for.  Jacob may be a ghost or unstuck in time.  That makes sense. Theories of quantum entanglement may explain how the island can control Michael's (Harold Perrineau) actions from thousands of miles away.  Polar bears may be able to teleport to Tunisia.  Of course, why not?

However, the one thing I cannot even begin to figure out is how, and why, Jacob's cabin keeps bouncing all around the island.  Does it only appear when it wants to be found by people like Hurley (Jorge Garcia) and Ben?  Is it just an island manifestation?  Any help with this one would be appreciated.

3)  How is Ben leaving the island?

Sayid found oodles of passports in Ben's (Michael Emerson) secret hideaway in this episode, and in "Meet Kevin Johnson" we learned that Mr. Friendly also took jaunts to the mainland.  The question is, how do they do it?  Perhaps they were using the submarine that Locke (Terry O'Quinn) blew sky high, or maybe there's another way.  I seem to be in love with ideas of teleportation lately, so maybe it's possible that the Others have access to such a device.  From what we've seen in the Orchid station orientation video, it's not completely far-fetched.

Actually, after thinking about it, the submarine is more likely.  Not everything has to have some outlandish scientific explanation.

4)  Who is the economist?

I was rewatching the fantastic Nikki and Paulo opus, "Exposé," last week, and I still think that the events involving the Cobra must have some deeper meaning.  If you're a little rusty on the episode, there's a moment in the show within a show where it's revealed that good guy Mr. LaShade, played by Billy Dee Williams, was really the evil, mysterious Cobra for four seasons.  According to Hurley, this reveal was a shocking twist for Exposé fans.

This clever moment has to be a meta reference to something that will actually happen on Lost, possibly at the end of this fourth season.  Before "The Economist," I figured that it might be the identity of Jacob that was the big, shocking reveal.  However, maybe the shocker will be the man Elsa was working for in Sayid's flash forward.  We may think it's Charles Widmore, but what if it's actually one of the good guys plotting against his former friends?  Anything is possible.

5)  Why is Sayid working for Ben?

Sometime in the future, Sayid (Naveen Andrews) is working as a hired gun for Ben, knocking people off in order to protect his friends.  All we know is that something terrible happened when Sayid followed his heart. Somebody likely ended up dead due to a mistake that he made, and Ben is using Sayid's guilt to his advantage.

My guess is that the economist and his gang are knocking off the Losties in an attempt to keep the Oceanic conspiracy alive.  I don't believe that Sayid would ever work for Ben unless his friends were truly in danger, so somebody must be after the castaways.  As always, my theories could be completely incorrect, but being proven wrong is all part of the Lost experience.

- Don Williams, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
(Image courtesy of Lostpedia.com)

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