Ok, here be spoilers and spoilerish thoughts!
There have been several rumours and spoilers and outright reports that all say Jacob will be introduced to us in the season finale, if not sooner. An actor has been cast and by several accounts he will be turning up in scenes with Losties: scenes from their pasts. Yeah. Mindbender.
Now... at first I thought that this would mean Jacob is kind of like Alpert, traveling around to see Juliet and Locke and all that... but now I'm not so sure. The idea came to me this morning as I was waking up, and it fitted together a lot of little pieces:
- Alpert's words about Ben not being the same and losing his innocence.
- Danielle's crew changing after the incident at the temple.
- The actor playing young Ben saying that he had been told NOT to model his performance on Michael Emerson, and that the reasons for that would become clear.
- The weird trail of dust/granules around Jacob's cabin.
- The whispers that have been hidden in the audio of the show from the start, even in audio from flashbacks.
- Jacob's list.
- The fact that not everyone can talk to Jacob.
- Reports that Alex will appear to Ben. I thought it would be adult Ben, but maybe it will be young Ben?
And more. But what it comes down to is this: what if the smoke monster is Jacob. What if he can somehow alter human beings. He can somehow save them from death but altering them at the same time. What if he can see into their pasts and maybe even their futures when he interacts with them. And maybe what he sees can be viewed by others even! What if Jacob's appearances in the Losties pasts come because they have all been "seen" by Smokey/Jacob. He wasn't actually there, but he is viewing their pasts! And then he can also assume "bodies" from their past like Yemi with Eko. He can scan them, like he did with Eko. And he can either kill them or alter them or keep studying them. Or maybe control them still? Like he appeared to Jack as his dad in the off-island world.
What if Jacob is/was a person who has somehow become Smokey with strange and odd powers. And what if only people who have been massively altered by him can communicate with him: like Ben. Like Christian? Like Locke?
I don't even know how it all really fits together, but I do think there is some kind of strong link between Jacob, Smokey, Jacob's appearances in the past of the Losties and Smokey taking shapes and "scanning" people. Now I need to start acting like a normal human and have a shower.