The numbers. We finally get some insight into what they mean, or at least what they correspond to:
- 4 - John Locke
- 8 - Hugo (Hurley) Reyes
- 15 - James (Sawyer) Ford
- 16 - Sayid Jarrah
- 23 - Jack Shephard
- 42 - Jin/Sun Kwon (it's unclear if it's both or one of them)
I've seen tweets asking, where's Kate! Well clearly she's not one of the candidates. We've known for some time that there are certain individuals that were picked by Jacob and are some how 'special'. We find out from Smokey, if you can trust him/it, that these listed are candidates to be Jacobs replacement.
There can be only one:
4 - Well we can already take Locke off the list, he's dead.
8 - Hurley is my favorite candidate. He's probably the most 'good' of the bunch. Additionally he's figured out how to take a hold of his destiny. The episode where he drives the old VW van off the side of the hill to get it to start is the point where he 'made it', in my opinion. Plus he sees dead people.
15 - Sawyer is a tricky one. Right now he's with Smokey but Sawyer isn't stupid. It's hard to con a conman, so I don't think he's necessarily in immediate danger, but I don't think he'll be the chosen one. He has leadership skills and is generally a good person, but he's also selfish.
16 - Sayid isn't exactly a 'good' person, so I find it difficult to believe he'd still be eligible for the job. He's not a bad person, just not good.
23 - Jack is the obvious choice. He's been acting as leader from pretty much season 1. We already know from his tattoo episode that he's meant to be a special leader. He's also come a long way in the 5+ seasons of the show. But I think it's because he's obvious that he won't be the new Jacob. I see him more as a new Richard. Jacob was the spiritual leader. Jack isn't that. He's a hands dirty, in the middle of it, leader.
42 - This one isn't too hard either. I just can't see either Sun or Jin or both of them together being the new Jacob. Like Jack they have both come a long way, but they have a child, one that I'm sure they'd both like to get back to. They have a life to live off the Island.
There can only be one...or can there?
What if there doesn't need to be one, but many? What if, through the struggles they've all been together, it's the balance of them all that makes them all need each other to bring out the strengths of each other? Kate may not be one of the candidates but that doesn't mean she can't be with Jack. (I don't see her with Sawyer at this point, but who knows.)
Consider Jack and Sawyer. They are frequently at each other, but they also bring out the best in each other. In many ways they lead in completely opposite ways but are still very effective in their leadership.
What if Hurley is the new Jacob, Jack is the new Richard, and Sawyer is the new Ben (leader of the Others)? Seems reasonable to me.