|Podcast Summary • Podcast Transcript|
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Transcripts for Lost episodes up to and including "Enter 77" are based on the transcriptions by Lost-TV member Spooky with aid of DVR, and at times, closed captions for clarification. She and Lost-TV have generously granted us permission to share/host these transcripts at Lostpedia. Later transcripts were created by the Lostpedia community, unless stated otherwise below.
Disclaimer: This transcript is intended for educational and promotional purposes only, and may not be reproduced commercially without permission from ABC. The description contained herein represents viewers' secondhand experience of ABC's Lost.
[opening Lost theme]
Kris White: Welcome to the Official Lost Podcast. In this installment, we join Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse for exclusive clues and a preview of the upcoming episode "Fire and Water," which airs Wednesday, January 25th, from 9 to 10 pm Eastern. Next up though, we rejoin actor Harold Perrineau, who plays Michael, for part two of his exclusive interview.
Kris White: Last podcast, we sat down with actor Harold Perrineau, who plays Michael. This week, we rejoin him for part two of our exclusive interview, and we pick up with the most fascinating thing we could think to ask him about: his hair, or lack thereof. You see, when Harold was in The Matrix, his character had long dreads, and despite what many thought, they weren't fake. So with natty dreads like that, why chop them off?
Harold Perrineau: I thought that The Matrix was gonna be such a big deal, and it was, kinda. [Laughs] Kinda-ish. That and I had my hair for so long, I thought that that would be the right moment to cut it because that was going to be a big deal and we could remember that forever. Now it's time for me to explore other things. I cut my hair, The Matrix happened, and nobody noticed. "Oh, that was real? That was weird." "Your hair is real? That's strange." It's been a good thing that it took about six months to get used to. Now I'm really glad that I did 'cause it gives me the opportunity to do lots of other things.
Kris White: Imagine for a second the character Michael with dreads or, while you're at it, Kate or Shannon or the dog. In other words, would dreads have affected Harold's chances at being cast?
Harold Perrineau: I might have been cast for Lost and might have been easier because then I wouldn't have the hair issue that I have now. As my hair is growing again, I'm suddenly thinking, "Oh my god, is Michael gonna have dreadlocks? Am I back to the dreadlocks I tried to get away from and they keep pulling me back." If I had them, it wouldn't be a problem. I do think that I might have gotten cast as Michael, but I wouldn't have been able to do some of the things I did in between. I did this play with Larry Gilliard called Topdog/Underdog, and I might not have gotten the chance to do that because there's specific characters. This flashback thing with Michael may have been more difficult with my hair 'cause you can't flashback ten years and your dreads are still the same length. That would have been a really tricky thing to deal with. Anyway, there are lots of other projects that I've been talking to people about and learning about that have been because they've seen Michael—'cause my hair is cut—that I actually have the chance now to do period things. I can't do anything from the 1930s with the long hair. I can't. It just didn't make sense, and I wanted to explore those things as well.
Kris White: Every actor imagines a backstory when creating their character. It helps find their motivation for the scene. With a show like Lost though, we get to see those backstories, and often they clash with what the actor originally imagined. Such was the case with Michael.
Harold Perrineau: I tell you, he's nicer than I expected him to be. Or, he is nicer so far than I expected him to be. He's got worse luck than I expected him to have so it's a bit of—I don't know. I try to take characters that I think are challenging and a little complicated and hopefully really smart and thoughtful and compassionate. I think Michael is all those things. He seems to have a lot of bad luck. After his kid being taken from him, the woman that he loves leaving him, and then working, and he finally gets his kid back, and then they're crashed on some wacky island somewhere and nothing—it doesn't stop. Now these Deliverance-looking redneck dudes kidnap his kid, and he's back on the island. The dude's got bad luck. I didn't expect a guy who seems so nice to have such bad luck. That's been an interesting thing to explore. I think myself as a nice guy, and I've had my run of bad luck—but wow, this dude is … wow.
Kris White: Of course, the million dollar question is, where's Michael headed?
Harold Perrineau: The thing I can tell you about where my character's headed is I don't know where my character's headed. [Laughs.] That's all I can tell you. I know that Michael is on a mission to get his son back. I know that. I don't know how far he's gonna go on that mission. I don't know what that mission's gonna mean to him. But I know that he is on a mission to do that, and that's where we are.
[Clip from a conversation between Michael and Locke in "The 23rd Psalm".]
Kris White: While the actors may not know much about where they're headed, someone does. For those answers and more, we turn to executive producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse for a sneak peek at what we can expect in this week's episode, "Fire and Water."
Carlton Cuse: Hello and welcome to our podcast. This is Carlton Cuse.
Damon Lindelof: And Damon Lindelof. Good day, Carlton.
Carlton Cuse: You're doing a better job getting your voice down there in the lower registers now.
Damon Lindelof: I've been listening to a lot of radio, and therefore I think I've mastered how to speak in more dulcet tones.
Carlton Cuse: You have. You sound very much like you should be on an FM jazz station some place.
Damon Lindelof: That's a nice way of saying I don't sound as much like a girl anymore. [Carlton chuckles.] Whatever. Hi, Lost fans.
Carlton Cuse: Hello. So we're gonna talk today a little about "The Hunting Party," which you saw, and about "Fire and Water," which is—
Damon Lindelof: Which you're about to see.
Carlton Cuse: Which you're about to see. Then we're going to answer your questions.
Damon Lindelof: Which is my favorite part, so the less dillydallying we do before we get to that, the better.
Carlton Cuse: We'll get on to that. "The Hunting Party" was an episode that set up the Others as a more significant force of opposition than we might have previously thought. I think it is a an episode that we put together that was really kind of a precursor for, in many ways, where the show is going this year. Without giving away too much, I think that the episode does key up the conflict with them and the revelation of the man in the woods who we refer to as—
Damon Lindelof: Mr. Friendly.
Carlton Cuse: Mr. Friendly.
Damon Lindelof: But that's not his real name. That's how we refer to him internally because he's just so friendly! [Carlton laughs.] Even though he doesn't do very friendly things and amongst them—taking Walt and now potentially being responsible for turning our gang around. I think one of the things that's frustrating for us as storytellers is, we have these designs. We've known for quite some time, very early in Season 2, that we were gonna do this bit with the computer where Walt—"Walt" "parenthesis" "question mark"—was someone claiming to be Walt?—was communicating with Michael and that would finally, once Michael got back to our fuselage folk, he would go rogue and go running after Walt. Because a lot of people have been saying, "Why is nobody going after Walt?" Our answer has always been because there's nowhere to go after him to. Where would you go? How would you handle it?
Carlton Cuse: This episode really sets in motion the storyline that a lot people have been waiting for which is, we need to get Walt back. There needs to an effort to get Walt back, and I know that in some cases there's frustration on the part of the audience that certain questions are left dangling on the show. But we also have, in the course of the season, endeavored to answer other questions. Clearly the Walt story is something which will be resolved this season, and you will get your answers about what happened to Walt.
Damon Lindelof: The thing is—and we completely admit to this—that part of the journey of the show is that for every question you answer, you have to leave a new compelling question in it's wake or else the show is going to become incredibly boring. If you look at "The Hunting Party," despite all the things that are going on on the island, the emotional reality of what's happening for Jack is where we approach the story from. We did give the audience this answer to what happened to his marriage. We realize by the end of the story that Jack's wife Sarah was having an affair or fallen in love with another man. It's all left very nebulous. We don't know who that person is. Hopefully in future flashbacks moving forwards we will answer more questions about Jack, but we now know definitively what happened to his relationship, or at least we know more. It's that balancing act that we're constantly trying to—I'm starting to sound like a girl again now.
Carlton Cuse: No, you sound—
Damon Lindelof: … talking about emotion and—
Carlton Cuse: You sound fabulous. Just don't cry.
Damon Lindelof: Yeah, okay. I won't.
Carlton Cuse: I think that viewers who watch the show wanting answers are inevitably bound to be frustrated, and I think that we hope that the characters' stories will be compelling and that we will be providing some answers to questions before raising others, but the ongoing nature of mysteries and the fact that we are the show is going to be on for a long time means that some questions can't be answered. If we answered those questions, there would be no core to the show left.
Damon Lindelof: I think a wise man once compared the show to the Road Runner cartoon. [Carlton laughs.] Thinking more about that analogy and the fact that the Road Runner never gets caught by Wile E. Coyote. If Wile E. Coyote were to catch the Road Runner, I think that would be enormously unsatisfying. What's so clever about those cartoons is how Wile E. Coyote tried to catch the Road Runner and that there were a variety of different methodologies and how many different ways are there to fall very very far off the same cliff and still amuse somebody. That is the challenge before us as storytellers. We really believe in our hearts that if Wile E. Coyote were to catch the Roadrunner, everyone would go, "Well I kind of felt like I wanted that to happen, but I really didn't."
Carlton Cuse: At the end of the day, I think it would be temporally satisfying but not fully satisfying. That being said, though, we are answering questions this year. You will know a lot more about the Others. You will know—
Damon Lindelof: Where Walt has been.
Carlton Cuse: Where Walt is and what happened to him and, among other things, including, hopefully, we're going to get to another chapter of Jack's marriage and finish that run of episodes so that you'll know, as Damon was talking about before, a little bit more definitively what exactly was the kind of the course of his marriage. Let's talk a little bit about "Fire and Water" and then let's get to these fan questions, Damon.
Damon Lindelof: [snickers] Have I told you that's my favorite part?
Carlton Cuse: [giggles] You have.
Damon Lindelof: "Fire and Water," by the way—we should mention "The Hunting Party" beautifully directed by Stephen Williams and even more beautifully written by Liz Sarnoff and Christina Kim. Was her first script, very excited. And "Fire and Water" was written by Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz and is directed by Jack Bender who directs many episodes for us. It's a Charlie episode. I think one of the things, certainly, as the writers of the show that we have been hearing a lot prior to these episodes airing is, "What's going on with Charlie and Claire? What's going on with that Virgin Mary statue?" We had always said that was gonna be the middle run of episodes, starting with the Eko episode.
Carlton Cuse: Right that we ( … ) of revisiting some of our central characters from last season, who had been neglected in our telling of the stories of the Tailies. This next run of episodes really features many of our principle characters from last season. We have Charlie. We have Sawyer. We have Claire. All of them are gonna get flashback stories coming up, so for those of you who have been waiting for your favorite characters to get a new flashback story …
Damon Lindelof: They're coming.
Carlton Cuse: They're coming.
Damon Lindelof: This episode is is not a big island mystery mythology episode. It's about settling into the core relationships of the show. There's a story in "Fire and Water" featuring Hurley, and has a little bit of romance to it, not to spoil too much but just to entice. The key relationship here is between Charlie and Claire after he lied to her about what was in the statue, what the immediate after-effects of that lie are. Also the interesting obstacle that begins to develop as Claire is beginning to develop a little bit of a relationship with Locke [Carlton: "Indeed she is."] which we started in Season 1. Whether she looks at him as a protector and father figure or something more is something that's very interesting to us, and very threatening to Charlie. That is the real dramatic conflict that this episode focuses on.
Carlton Cuse: Right. To go back to your comment about Hurley a second ago, Damon I would say that the number one question that we get asked these days is, "Why has the fat guy not lost any weight?" We want to let you know that that question is going to be addressed in the narrative of the show coming up very soon.
Damon Lindelof: Yes, exactly. Not this show but very, very soon.
Carlton Cuse: Exactly.
Damon Lindelof: What we've got going on in this episode as a little tidbit. For the easter egg hunters, there is a flashback. In this episode that takes place in London, and you will see the London skyline, and you might want to check it out very, very carefully. There's an iconic building there that you music fans might recognize. I don't want to tip from what, but there's some signage on that building too that might pay off later for those of you who are who are easter egg hunting that you should write down and say what does this mean. All will be revealed.
Carlton Cuse: Exactly. All right. I think that's pretty much all we want to say about "Fire and Water" until you guys have seen it, and we'll talk about it next time after you guys have seen it, so let's move on to some question here, Damon.
Damon Lindelof: This is my favorite part.
Carlton Cuse: Okay, you want to go first then?
Damon Lindelof: Yes this is a great question, Carlton, and I think you'll be able to answer it well. This is posted by BooYah319. [Carlton snickers.] "If Lost had not been successful during its first season, how would you have ended the season, and what else would have been different? Imagine you found out midway through, say, when Locke found the hatch."
Carlton Cuse: Wow, that is a good question.
Damon Lindelof: BooYah319. [Carlton chuckles.]
Carlton Cuse: Why 319?
Damon Lindelof: I guess there were 318 other BooYahs [Carlton laughs.] is the answer.
Carlton Cuse: The problem with all television series is that—well, almost all television series—you never know when they're going to end. This is always problematic if you're making a show and the ratings are marginal, you're scraping along, you're hoping you're gonna get renewed. It's very rare that you have an opportunity to do the definitive ending. I think this show would have been—that's a very good question. How would it have been resolved because there are big story arcs that are set in play. Had the handwriting been on the wall that the show was not doing well ratings-wise, we probably would have accelerated the mysteries, and we would have tried to answer some mythological questions. It's a question of figuring out what can you reasonably do in a short period of time in terms of answering those sorts of questions.
Damon Lindelof: I think we probably would have been so bitter about it, though, that we say whatever and done whatever we wanted to do. It's hard to say. I mean, there's this show Reunion that was on the WB this year that was constructed around a—
Carlton Cuse: It was on Fox, I think.
Damon Lindelof: Was it on Fox?
Carlton Cuse: Yeah.
Damon Lindelof: Maybe it was on Fox. In any case, it was constructed around this huge mythology and very flashback-based. Basically, the conceit of the show was every episode was another year in these guys' lives, and there was an overarching murder mystery. Then the show got cancelled, so they never got the opportunity to—if they had known the show wasn't doing well, what do they do? They have one guy stand up in the middle of the scene and say, "I did it"? But there'd be no context for it.
Carlton Cuse: I think we would hopefully have had an opportunity for Damon and I to don some smoking jackets and step out in front of the hatch and with a whiteboard and diagram out all the mythology of the show. That would have been my fantasy for how we ended the show.
Damon Lindelof: Or we have the Joop ending, which we've referred to in the past, which is—in the writers' room, we have this. literally, a glass box, and it says "In case of cancellation, break glass." In there we have written some pages that we don't want to spoil for you because we might still have to use it once we're up against American Idol. Basically it involves a talking monkey named Joop who smokes a pipe and turns around and explains exactly every mystery on the Island in a four-page scene. In case anything were to happen to us, too, that'd be also good because we don't really trust people with that much information.
Carlton Cuse: That's fantastic. All right, let me throw one out to you here, Damon.
Damon Lindelof: I wish you would, Carlton, 'cause this is my favorite part.
Carlton Cuse: Really? That's your favorite part?
Damon Lindelof: It really is.
Carlton Cuse: Didn't know that. This is a question submitted by HugsForSawyer, "How come there weren't any teens on the plane? The closest is Walt, and he's only 10. Also, how come the plane left in 2004, but the peaches in "What Kate Did," during the scene where she gets her money, say 2005 on them? They've only been on this island for less than two months."
Damon Lindelof: I guess I'll answer the first part first which is how come there weren't any teens on the plane. What many people don't know is that there is a teen shortage in Australia right now. An entire—for some reason, not unlike the baby boom in the United States, there is a large generational gap, so that on the continent of and in the country in Australia, there are literally people up to the age of 12, and then it starts again at 20. For 8 years, nobody reproduced in Australia.
Carlton Cuse: That's incredible.
Damon Lindelof: And since the plane—it is an anomaly that a lot of people don't—I think 60 Minutes is doing a story on it. In any case, that is why since our plane departed from Sydney, there were no teens on the plane. The peach question is a much trickier one and involves time travel. Therefore, I'd rather not answer it.
Carlton Cuse: Okay.
Damon Lindelof: I will say we leave many—in all seriousness, we leave many intentional easter eggs on the show, but at the same time, there are also occasional—
Carlton Cuse: Gaffes.
Damon Lindelof: What we call continuity gaffes. If there was in fact a peach that says 2005 on it, that was a mistake.
Carlton Cuse: We're not perfect.
Damon Lindelof: We are not responsible for—those peaches should have been from—
Carlton Cuse: 2004.
Damon Lindelof: The year two thousand should not even—'cause "What Kate Did" takes place during 2000 or 2001.
Carlton Cuse: That's true.
Damon Lindelof: So I will say [Carlton: "Good catch"] there is a misprint on the peach.
Carlton Cuse: Yes
Damon Lindelof: That would be my excuse there.
Carlton Cuse: Okay.
Damon Lindelof: I have one more question for you, Carlton.
Carlton Cuse: Just one more?
Damon Lindelof: Well we ( … ) because we just talk and talk and talk …
Carlton Cuse: You're right, that's true.
Damon Lindelof: I will ask you, let's see, that's a pretty good one … Some of these are just … Okay, this is a good one, "To producers from GQquintano, Why is this so-called monster stares at Locke and Eko—" Well, that's not good grammar. I'm gonna intuit here, GQ, "Why is it that this so-called monster stares at Locke and Eko but yet rips the pilot out of the cockpit and gets eaten and left for dead?"
Carlton Cuse: Wow, that is a very good question, and I think that in examining the fact that those two events happened, I think that the answer lies there. The pilot, and the way in which he behaved and the way in which Eko and Locke behaved towards the monster I think determined their fates. I'm sure if you surf around on the web, you will discover that there were all sorts of hidden frames in the smoke monster that related to Eko's life and that these these film frames were all significant images from his past. The monster was cycling through those images, and after cycling through those images and evaluating Eko, made a decision about how to behave towards Eko, and I think that, without saying more, I think that your question hits the nail right on the head in terms of the monster is discriminating—the monster does not treat everyone equally.
Damon Lindelof: Well, what's very interesting, Carlton, is that when Locke sees the monster for the second time in the finale of last year, it treats him much differently. In fact it attacks him and tries to drag him into a hole, so how would your theory correspond with that action?
Carlton Cuse: Well, I think that at that particular moment in time, Locke's behavior and attitude may not have been the same as when he was confronted by the monster the first time.
Damon Lindelof: Maybe a little less secure in his faith that he was on the right path.
Carlton Cuse: That would be a very good assumption, Damon.
Damon Lindelof: I'm good at this.
Carlton Cuse: You are.
Damon Lindelof: I love this part.
Carlton Cuse: I think you might have a little inside information too.
Damon Lindelof: There is that.
Carlton Cuse: Okay, so can I ask you another question here?
Damon Lindelof: One more question, Carlton.
Carlton Cuse: All right, this is from …
Damon Lindelof: … have too much of a good thing.
Carlton Cuse: This is from MannyPapi2434 who has had 103 posts in the last 90 days, so thank you for being a avid fan, MannyPapi.
Damon Lindelof: I think it's pronounced "poppy".
Carlton Cuse: Papi, Manny, Papi … Okay, all right, Manny. Here's his question, "Does the electromagnetic wall in the hatch and the electromagnetic station from the Dharma Initiative have anything to do with the fact that John Locke can walk after being in a wheelchair for four years? In the Season 1 finale, when Hurley is driving his car to the airport in slow motion, the number sequences can be seen on the speedometer and in the airport on the field hockey jerseys. Are these little jokes that the writers put in? Or are they for us, the viewers, to discover?
Damon Lindelof: I'm gonna start with the second part first this time, Carlton. Yes, in the in the finale, all the numbers that are dropped into Hurley's run to the airport were all not jokes but they were what we call easter eggs. They were planted very specifically in Hurley's bit because of his own affiliation with the numbers. There are—other than those mentions: the speedometer and the field hockey jerseys—you will find them in other places. I believe the gentleman who is driving around that little cart that Hurley commandeers is wearing a hat, and there's some gate numbers in there [ and on the ticket agent's screen as she's typing away in an effort to get Hurley to his proper gate, we intentionally planted the numbers all over that one. The first part about the electromagnetic wall in the hatch and the electromagnetic station and how that might correlate to Locke's ability to walk, I don't know. This is not the first time that I've heard that theory, and I think it's very interesting, but I would I would be curious as to how an electromagnet under the ground could enable somebody to walk. That is to say, unless his legs were somehow electromagnetically powered and he was bionic in some form. I think it's safe to say that there are many mysteries about the true nature of whatever is beyond that concrete and whether or not it is a very strong electromagnet or whether or not it's strong enough to draw keys and change to it is something that we will certainly be peeling back the layers of as we approach the finale. I think all will be revealed about the nature of that wall and what is beyond it and and whether or not it has any real function, because I think that's in play. Could be some ginormous hoax, I would imagine.
Carlton Cuse: I think that we can promise you that we're going to deal with what happens if you don't push that button, narratively, this season. You will see more story material about the button and about the electromagnetic force field.
Damon Lindelof: I think the button should have flashbacks. We should see it being crafted in a plastics company and the guy who etches the word "Execute" onto it and then it gets placed onto the keyboard. I think that'd be fascinating.
Carlton Cuse: That's genius. I think that's a sweeps episode.
Damon Lindelof: I think it is a sweeps episode.
Carlton Cuse: That's fantastic.
Damon Lindelof: We'll just call it "Execute."
Carlton Cuse: Yeah, that's good. That's good.
Damon Lindelof: That's awesome. You guys have been witness to …
Carlton Cuse: The birth of a story idea.
Damon Lindelof: … episode of Lost. We'll do it in the ninth season or the tenth season.
Carlton Cuse: Yeah, I think that's great.
Damon Lindelof: On that note …
Carlton Cuse: I think we should say sayonara.
Damon Lindelof: Sayonara.
Carlton Cuse: Or adios.
Damon Lindelof: Adios.
Carlton Cuse: Or goodbye. Or adiamo.
Damon Lindelof: What does that mean?
Carlton Cuse: It means it's time for us to get the heck out of Dodge.
Damon Lindelof: How about, ciao?
Carlton Cuse: Ciao.
Kris White: That concludes this week's podcast. Be sure to check out additional exclusive content at lost.abc.com, where you can also submit your own fan questions. "Fire and Water" airs Wednesday, January 18th [sic] from 9 to 10 pm.
[closing soundtrack music]