In “The Package,” Sun is working in the garden she planted earlier on the island, alone. She is frustrated because she has come back to the island to find her husband Jin, but remains separated from him. Then the Smoke creature in the form of Locke comes out of the jungle and Sun faces him suspiciously.
Sun: What are you doing here?
FakeLocke: I found your husband.
Sun is stunned.
FakeLocke: I promised you that I would reunite you two—took me a little longer than I thought it would—but he’s with my people back at my camp across the island.
Sun stares at him. Then he reaches out his hand to her as he takes a few steps towards her.
FakeLocke: I can take you to him right now.
Sun takes a step backward.
Sun: I don’t believe you.
FakeLocke drops his hand.
Sun: You killed those people at the temple.
FakeLocke: Those people were confused. They were lied to. I didn’t want to hurt them. Any one of them could have chosen to come with me.
He takes a few more steps towards her.
FakeLocke: And I’m giving you that choice, Sun—right now. I would never make you do anything against your will. I’m asking you.
He puts out his hand again.
FakeLocke: Please, come with me.
Sun stares at him.
FakeLocke: Jin is waiting.
Sun looks at his hand for a moment—and then she BOLTS, running through the jungle back towards the beach.
I loved this scene in last night’s Lost. Not only does it give us a insightful image of the seductive power of evil (yes, I’m among those who currently think Smokey is up to no good), but also the nature of sin—and one of the more effective ways of resisting it.
I couldn’t help but marvel at the consistent and effective image of evil that Smokey evokes. Here, he comes to Sun—as he has to several other characters—with an offer that meets her deepest desire: to be reunited with Jin. She need only take FakeLocke's hand and go with him. But, as she says later in the episode, she doesn’t trust him. Even if his gentle manner and seductive words (made more enticing laced with truth) suggest otherwise, his past actions betray his nature. (For what it’s worth, FakeLocke’s use of truth makes him one of the more thought-provoking images of evil on television—but that’s a topic for another post.) I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to suggest that Sun suspects taking the hand of FakeLocke will lead not to a love and life but destruction and death. And that evokes some powerful echoes of biblical depictions of temptation, sin and evil.
And Smokey’s words get an important truth about evil and temptation. We are not forced into anything—it is our choice as to what path we walk, who we choose to follow after. I literally held my breath as Sun stared at FakeLocke’s hand. I don’t know what I expected her to do, but when she bolted away from him I immediately thought of all those biblical images of turning and fleeing from temptation, like Joseph’s flight from Potipher’s wife and Paul’s words to Timothy. And Sun’s choice to run gets at some important reasons as to why we flee—not only to keep ourselves from making the wrong choice but also because ultimately evil’s touch is devouring, destructive and dangerous (as we are reminded by the fate of those in the temple who refused to follow FakeLocke).
Whether you intended all this or not, scribes-of-Lost, well done.
(Image: ABC, via Hulu)