Heroin in Lost

What Does Heroin Symbolize in Lost?

Each time that heroin is seen in Lost it symbolizes addiction. This is seen primarily with the character of Charlie Pace, because he is shamelessly addicted to heroin at the start of the series. Before he crashed on the island, Charlie was a rock star who blew much of his money on heroin. Before Charlie got addicted, his brother Liam was addicted during the time that their band was popular. They soon lost popularity because Liam was becoming sloppier, showing the destruction of addiction.  Eventually, Charlie got so upset at his brother for destroying their band he took the heroin for himself and eventually became addicted as well.
After Liam was married and had a child, he missed her birth because he was out doing heroin, which made him realize he wanted to become a better man. He left the band completely which ended it, much to Charlie’s dismay. This caused Charlie to become more addicted to heroin. Charlie’s addiction became so bad that he entered a relationship with the daughter of a wealthy business man just so he could steal from them to pay his drug dealer. This symbolizes how addiction can truly break people.

Although Liam tried to get Charlie help for his addiction, Charlie blew him off and went on Flight 815. John Locke told Charlie that he believes Charlie was put on the island so he could overcome his addiction. He overcame his addiction by throwing the last of his heroin in a fire, but people still suspected him of being an addict because he found a stash and kept it. This led to him becoming a pariah of the island even though he never did any of the drugs. His addiction simply led him to taking the drugs to hold onto them, showing how the perception of addiction is also destructive.
Mr. Eko had also been heavily involved with heroin. He was a crime lord who smuggled drugs through any means necessary. When the UN made it difficult for him to do so, he forced his brother, a priest, to smuggle the drugs on a church plane and hid them in Virgin Mary statues. Eko’s brother repeatedly tries to convince Eko not to go through with it, but Eko forces his brother to comply. This leads to his brother being shot as he tried to stop the drug smuggling. For Eko, his addiction was to drug smuggling because he had done it for so long and was trying to use his own brother’s status as a priest to smuggle the drugs. And like many addicts, Eko tried to use an excuse to justify what he’s done, saying he was doing his country justice by getting the drugs out of the country. In the end, it shows how addiction is destructive for Mr. Eko because it leads to his brother’s death.