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To me Room 23 recalls not only A Clockwork Orange but Plato's Republic. One of the most famous chapters in the republic weaves the image of a prisoner who is chained to a chair in a cave and forced to watch shadows on a wall projected by puppeteers. However, he is freed by another entity and dragged to the daylight, representing a journey to intellectual freedom and truth. Consequently: Karl is tied to a chair and forced to watch flickering images presumably created by The Others as a substitute for reality. However, he is freed and dragged out to complete freedom by Alex, Kate, and Sawyer.