Sunday, March 23, 2008

The Easter Egg of Easter Eggs

On this day of miracles both Christian and chocolate, I feel I should say something Easter-related. But, being feeble-minded and increasingly secular, I think I’ll stick to old reliable: pointless pop culture nothings, especially those not yet well-documented elsewhere online. I know, I know. “Way to celebrate a holiday with more of the same,” you say. (Jerk.) Well, allow me to set you up for an even greater disappointment: This post is Lost-related, too. However, if you wait it out to the end, you might just get to experience something that’s entirely Easter-appropriate, not to mention an example of the kind of punny wordplay that generally only smartypants know-it-alls waste their time with.

Here we go.

Remember Juliet? Juliet Burke? Maybe you don’t. I’m actually not sure that I’ve ever mentioned her on this blog before, but she’s been a major player on Lost since last season, when she figuratively jumped ship and left those sinister Others and joined up with the main castaways — the main Lost cast, whom I think should be referred to as the “Losers.” It should surprise nobody — whether island-bound or couch-bound — that Juliet eventually had to pay for her misdeeds. The Others are as powerful as they are mysterious, and they don’t take kindly to being dumped for the sexier new group of Four Toe Island inhabitants. Juliet was put on trial by the others, in a public ceremony officiated by the imperious Isabel — a never-explained authority figure played by Diana Scarwid, of Mommie Dearest and Wonderfalls fame. Others bigwig Ben commutes the initial death sentence that Juliet gets for her betrayal, the trade-off being that Juliet must be permanently marked. The Others brand Juliet. We eventually see it. It looks like this:

Like a lot of things on Lost, the symbol itself has yet to be explained. I somehow don’t think it ever will be, for two reasons. First, the fact that Juliet was branded means more than the symbol that was branded on her. Second, I don’t think the symbol means anything. (And here’s where the Easter part comes in.) Anyone who’s wandered through a grocery store or pharmacy in the last few weeks has no doubt seen the displays for Cadbury’s Creme Eggs — the chocolate-on-the-outside, sweetened-lard-on-the-inside annual wonders that we Americans get Lent, when we should theoretically be denying ourselves such pleasures. (God, you bastard.) Peel back the foil from a Cadbury’s Creme Egg, and you’ll notice that the side of the egg is emblazoned with a mark. It looks like this:

Get it? Like so many other allusion, off-topic asides, hidden bits of trivia and inside jokes, it would appear that Juliet’s mark is merely an Easter egg, in the non-holiday sense, that references an Easter egg, in the holiday-related sense. It’s a pun, a small practical joke on the people that try to read meaning into every stray comment and bit of set dressing on Lost. Other theories abound, of course. The Lostapedia page on which I found the Cadbury’s explanation also posits that Juliet’s mark could be the Five-Fingered Hand of Eris, the sign for the zodiac sign Pisces, the alchemy symbol for ammonium salt, or the Red Hot Chili Peppers logo. However, none of these look as much like Juliet’s actual mark as the Cadbury’s symbol, so I’m inclined to think that this is the correct answer.

And then meaning ate itself.

And then I ate another Cadbury’s Creme Egg.

And then I wondered whether the casting of Diana Scarwid in an episode involving ritual scarification was coincidental.


  1. That's kinda cool... a cross with rays of sunlight coming out of it... and chocolate... mixed together.

  2. You just blew my fucking mind. And that's coming from a girl who wrote her thesis on the tattooed female body as text itself.

    I've been thinking about Juliet's marks and Jack's marks, and you totally just blew me away by positing the "easter egg" theory.

    Well played, Mr. Mackie, well played.

  3. So you're telling us that this is the Lost equivalent of Cousin Lil's chicken dance in Fire Walk With Me?