When the ‘Lost‘ bosses gathered on Thursday night with much of the show’s cast to honor series composer Michael Giacchino, they found themselves facing the music with regards to the May 11 episode that benched Jack, Locke et al to focus on very old and very wild island mythology.
In fact, when this Fancast editor shared his appreciation for the detour and the need for it, executive producer Carlton Cuse had to comment, “Oh, so you were the one person that seemed to like it!”
Some others (though not those Others), however, have called the hour “polarizing,” if only because of its proximity to the series finale. The argument goes like this: The time for answers is now, so why introduce more questions?
Cuse said his favorite moment from the hour, titled “Across the Sea,” was when the “mother” figure (guest star Allison Janney) advised young Jacob, “Every question I answer will simply lead to another question – mainly because there was a not-so-hidden message therein.
“That was a pointed way of us saying [to the viewer], ‘We are answering questions, but we could never close the loop of questions on this show,’” he explains.
Likening it to the debate over what existed before the “big bang” that begot the universe, Cuse says that while “Across the Sea” did shed an ethereal tunnel of light on island mythology, “There will always be things that precede the things we explain.”
Exec producer Damon Lindelof says that his favorite scene found “Jacob and the Boy in Black cowering in the jungle” when they stumbled upon “other” strangers. “It’s weird to think that at one point in his life Jacob was scared, since we always think of him as the ultimate force on the island,” Lindelof notes. “That was our attempt to say, ‘It’s all a matter of perspective.’”
Fancast asked Titus Welliver (aka the still-nameless Man in Black) which scene from the script most made him remark, “I’m sorry – what again?” After a big chuckle, he answered, “Page 1… to the very end.” The ‘Deadwood’ alum then singled out the origin of his own Smoke Monster alter ego, saying, “We actually got to see how he came to life. That was big.”
Michael Emerson – whom we like to think of as ‘Lost’s eloquent cast ambassador – acknowledged that “Across the Sea” and its revelation of a light-drenched cave as the source of the island’s mysterious power was “a huge gamble. It’s a little bit ‘out there’ and doesn’t have a precedent on any show I can think of.”
Even so, he too was a fan of the episode, including Janney’s mysterious matriarch (“She had accepted that she had done evil and was powerless to have made any other choice”) and the cave reveal. “I like the idea that there was this magic place.”
Emerson went on to hint that the reveal of the island’s beautiful, glowy center “sets up something wonderful,” likely alluding to the action-packed two-and-a-half hour series finale airing Sunday, May 23.