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Readers Respond: What/Who is the smoke monster?

Responses: 15


In episode 6x15, Across the Sea, we saw Man in Black float into the light cave and disappear, then the smoke monster came out. Was the smoke monster already there? Was the woman who claimed to be Jacob and Man in Black's mother the smoke monster? Was the smoke monster born when Man in Black floated into the cave? What do you think?

It was purely defensive

The ‘Smoke Monster’ has been referred to as a defense system for the island (Danielle Rousseau for one)—is it possible that ‘smokie’ is exactly that, originally ‘born’ of the island to protect the source of the light, with the ability to assimilate a host, look into their soul and memories to determine their intent. With Man in Black, and his overriding need to leave the island, which lead to his killing of his ‘mother’—the resulting fight with his brother, Jacob—and MIB’s transition from human to an assimilated being—the ‘Smoke Monster’ original purpose on the island was corrupted by the soul and memories of MIB.

It's Symbolism

It represents the greed and hate and readiness to destroy anything to get what it wants that lives inside of everyone, but on the island it is symbolized by a dark gloomy storm cloud of black smoke. For instance "Locke" wanted to leave the island and that is what gave him the ability to turn into the smoke monster, but for the original MIB, Jacob's brother, he wanted to kill Jacob and find the light and that is what gave him the ability to turn into the smoke monster.
—Guest JoeyG093

I know the identity of the smoke monster

It's the fumes created by the guys who smoke during their lunch break at my work place.
—Guest jack rabbit

Mother was not the smoke monster...

...but how was MIB able to stab her? Like Locke, shouldn't she have been invincible? It wasn't until the light went out after Desmond pulled out the stone that Locke became mortal again. At that point the black smoke did not posses a human form yet. It wiped out that village to provoke the man in black to kill his mother, in turn resulting in pissing Jacob off and pushing him into the light. When that happened MIB died and the black smoke took over his body. But what's more confusing is in Richard's episode the Man in Black we see is no longer Jacob's brother but the black smoke had all of his memories...just like Locke had all of his memories after becoming the black smoke. The black smoke was never meant to leave the island...it's where it belongs...but because it took over someone that wanted to leave...well it was just destined not to work out.
—Guest jack

Bad to Leave Island

When Jack jumps off the boat to swim to shore, he says he feels he isn't supposed to leave the island...He has the sense that Smoke Monster leaving will do harm in the world.
—Guest jbaker123

Split Candidates

I think that Mother was an 'all-in-one' protector of the island. She originally intended for Claudia to give birth to one baby (the reason I think Claudia was brought to the island), but when she saw twins, she devised a long plan (or con) to split the role of island protector between them (good V bad). When she burned the MIB's village, she did it to provoke the conflict which would result in Jacob pushing the MIB into the cave. I think the smoke monster was present on the island before everyone (shown by the Egyptian drawing of Ra battling the smoke monster on the wall under the temple in 'Dead is Dead' when Ben was being judged), but was contained until the first person entered the light cave, which was keeping the 'evil' at bay. 'Mother' was the smoke monster until she was killed (how else did she wipe out a whole tribe?) and then MIB became it when he was pushed into the cave. But here's a thought; has Jacob (of 2007) yet walked into the cave? Is he also a smokie??
—Guest July37th

Jacob and the Brother

Could it be possible that they are reincarnated versions of Adam and Eve's sons? One good, one evil? Cain and Able.
—Guest jann

Smoke Monster Feelings

I think the smoke monster is all the anger/jealousy/hatred/dark feelings that "twin B " experienced.
—Guest foleybrown

Smoke Monster = Absence of Light

When MIB floated into tunnel, the light went out, and out came Smokey. So if the light in the tunnel represented Life, Death, Rebirth, then old Smokey is the absences of those things. Maybe he represents the apocalypse or Pandora's Box? So he wants off the island to destroy the world. Jacob's and the candidates' job is to keep it contained.
—Guest Jiffy

Evil in His Soul

I think when Man in Black floated into the light, the cave kept the light that was inside him and spit out the rest, consisting of his physical form and the part of his soul that was not light. I also think Mother knew how to manipulate them both well enough to know Jacob would throw MIB in the cave for killing her. It happened exactly as she planned.
—Guest pause88

Who knows

Bonnie, I was thinking the same things that you mentioned in your episode guide. I think, now that I got to think about it, the smoke monster was always on the island. "Mother" was possessed by the smoke monster when the episode began. When she was killed, her "thank you" tells me she was freed. Then where did the smoke monster come from? I still don't know, but I am sure now that it is not MIB's soul.
—Guest JP

Jacob's Grandmother

The smoke monster was Jacob's grandmother. Jacob's mother pointed out that her mother is dead. Jacob took over the role of his mother and Jacob's brother took over the role of their grandmother once he went through the tunnel. Jack is going to take over the role of Jacob and Claire is going to take over the role of the Black Monster, or vice-versa. The roles seem to be taken by people who are related.
—Guest Guest420

Smoke Monster is the Devil

The smoke monster is the devil. The Man in Black floating into the light released the devil into the world, and the smoke monster took over Man in Black's body. And if the smoke monster gets out into the world, they all go to hell, because the smoke monster is the devil.
—Guest imboredtodeath7

It's a Hybrid

The smoke monster is a hybrid of what happens when a human enters the light. It is a hybrid of the island light or the energy of the island and the essence or most dominant traits of the human who enters the light. "Mother" was a smoke monster. She entered the light and then warned Jacob and his brother against doing the same. Jacob forced his brother into the light and he became the smoke monster we have known throughout the series.
—Guest gohawaii

Born from MIB

It was the combination of Man in Black being bad and the good of the light that formed the smoke monster. His "mother" knew this would happen and pushed him toward it so that he would kill her and she would finally be "free".
—Guest Kasey Rae

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