If the "Lost" spoiler video leaked online Friday was real, we'll know within the first few minutes of tonight's Season 6 premiere whether Jack's hydrogen bomb reset plan to keep Oceanic flight 815 from crashing worked. Still, five seasons of unanswered questions remain. Writer/producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse have promised to answer many of them, but there's no way they'll be able to get to them all in the remaining 18 hours, beginning Feb. 2 at 8 p.m. on ABC (a try-and-catch-up recap airs at 7 p.m., just before the season premiere).
So what are the most burning remaining questions? Here is my list, in no particular order.
What's the story with Libby?
She gave Desmond the Elizabeth, her deceased husband's yacht, so that he could win a round-the-world race to prove a point to his lover's father (Charles Widmore). Desmond and the damaged, GPS-enabled boat washed up onto the Island. Was that - and Libby's involvement - part of Widmore's plan to find the Island? It's not unusual for the castaways' paths to have crossed before, but Libby was also in the mental institution with Hurley (the pair later developed a romantic attachment before she died). Why? Because of her husband's death or something more sinister?
What's Aaron's significance? Claire's psychic told her that her "special" unborn child needed her protection and should not be "raised by another" (an Other?). When Claire decided to give the child up for adoption, that psychic booked her onto flight 815. The Island's "Others" seemed to have a zealous interest in Aaron's well-being.
What is the smoke monster? Is it a security system? A ruthless killer? Judge and jury? A Give-A-Show® projector?
The winding cloud of black smoke seems to be all of those things. But I want to know where it came from, exactly what it is and who (if anybody) controls it.
What about those whispers?
Characters seem to hear the ominous, indecipherable mutterings swirling around them before something bad happens. They've been associated with the Others and the smoke monster. Are they the echoes of time travelers or what?
Who are Adam and Eve?
The identity of the skeletons Jack and Kate found in Season 1 has never been explained, but Cuse and Lindelof have indicated that when they are, viewers will realize that the show runners are not just making the story up as they go along but, rather, have had a plan from the beginning. Bring it on.
Who are Jacob and the man in black? Why are they fighting? How long have they been on the Island? What prevents one from killing the other? Introduced in the Season 5 finale, their story will likely be the linchpin of the final 18 episodes.
What happened to Annie?
Ben's childhood friend comforted him during an attack from "the Hostiles." She gave him his-and-hers carved, wooden dolls for his birthday, telling him they would never be apart. But she's no longer around when Ben reaches adulthood. Was she killed in the Purge - a mass murder that occurred when Ben released toxic gas in the Dharma compound? That would make Ben her killer. Enquiring minds want to know.
What's the real purpose of the Dharma Initiative?
The science-based research project founded by hippie doctoral candidates Gerald and Karen DeGroot, backed by the Hanso Foundation, had seemingly altruistic goals of harnessing the Island's energy for good. But they also had massive stockpiles of weapons. And Magnus Hanso, great-granddad of the Hanso Foundation's Alvar, is believed to have been captaining the Black Rock, a 19th-century slave ship found deep in the Island's jungle. What gives? And while we're at it, who is continuing the post-Purge Dharma food drops and why?
Why keep torturing us with the numbers?
4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42. Transmitted from the Island, the digits won the lottery for Hurley, and then convinced him that he is cursed. They were engraved on the door of Dharma's Swan Station. Are they a harmless serial number or something more? Cuse and Lindelof have indicated they have little significance (and that viewers who expect them to be explained will remain disappointed) but the pair continues to tease viewers by writing them into the show.
Why can't pregnancies come to term on the island?
What is it about the Island that causes infertility among its female inhabitants? Why do those who become pregnant on the Island die? Was the whole thing just a writer's device to bring the character of Juliet to the Island? We know that Ethan and others were born on the Island, so what caused the change? Jack's reset?