Lost's Daniel Dae Kim, Evangeline Lilly and Grant Bowler chat to TV WEEK about the exciting twists of the latest season
Daniel Dae Kim
Jin's starting to speak more English. Are you thinking, "Yay! At last I can interact with more people on the island"?
Will it affect upcoming storylines?
I don't know. I mean, we'll see. As you know, each episode takes place over a day and a half. So even though we've been on air for four years, it's only been a few months on the island. So we'll see how much of a quick learner he is. But I keep having this fantasy that one day Jin will have a flashback or flash-forward and he'll be able to speak the same language as everyone else. Maybe they'll all speak Korean? But I don't think that's going to happen.
Where do you stand on the "Is Locke good or bad?" divide?
I generally don't ask those questions because I don't think anyone is all good or all bad. Everyone is driven by their own motivations. Whatever Locke does, he feels like he's doing the right thing. When he throws the knife into the back of Naomi, he doesn't feel like he's a villain — he genuinely believes that he's saving the island. I think that's one of the good things about this show too — people can take sides and choose.
In an ideal world, how would you like to see the show end?
Well, I used to think I would love to see everyone happily off the island, but I don't think people can escape their problems just by going back to civilisation. So I wouldn't be surprised if the series ended on the island. But what I expect to see and what I hope to see, I'm not quite sure.
How would you compare this season to the other ones so far?
I'd have to say it's topping seasons two and three for me and is up there in the season one category.
Did you feel that way from the start?
I felt that way from the end of last season, when we finished with that unbelievable ending of realising that we flashed forward and at least two people got off the island. I thought, "Oh, wow!" This was completely turning us on our head in a way that we needed. The show hadn't become stale, but if we were going to keep audiences intrigued and guessing, we had to keep moving and I thought it was a bold, daring, exciting move. So from then, they have continued on with it and they've been integral enough to not leave people hanging after setting that precedent up. But a huge part of that is because the writers have a timeline. They know how many episodes they are writing, so they are writing with an end goal in mind, instead of writing in perpetuity.
Are you happy with all the information we are finding out?
The audience worried, as did we, "What if they never tie it up or [don't] know what they are doing?" so it's nice that everybody realises they know what they are doing.
Did you enjoy your flash-forward?
For me, it was so exciting because I had been asked over the past few years by different journalists [who I would pick] if I could choose to trade places with any other character on the island, and I said over and over again it would be Claire because she gets to be the mother of that beautiful, adorable baby. So I have no idea if I somehow influenced my own destiny because I ended up with her baby!
How did audiences react to seeing Kate as a mother?
I had some interesting feedback because a few people said, "What the heck?" One minute, we see her as a hardcore, tough nut, and the next minute, we see her all soft and feminine. I sensed a lot of frustration from some fans, like they were almost angry with the character. Like, "How dare you? We count on you to be one thing and we don't want you to be another thing." But for me, that was affirming and wonderful because I thought that was the appropriate reaction to a character you've come to know and love when I’m altering the character so much.
The trial scene was fairly awkward for Jack and Kate...
Especially when Jack goes into the testimony of the complete made-up story about what a hero Kate was after the plane crashed. I thought it was interesting that Kate, who has spent decades lying through her teeth and has seemingly been quite content to be that person, seemed so uncomfortable with the fact she was up on the stand lying. A few scenes before that, she'd even pleaded not guilty.
Were you surprised to see Ben in Sayid's flash-forward?
I don't think I was surprised because he's such a cunning, conniving, intelligent, completely 100% selfish man — I thought it seemed to work with his character. It makes sense that if anybody got off the island, he was going to get off the island with them or be a part of that group in some way. What has not been clarified is whether he's considered part of the Oceanic Six because he's not on the manifest, so it doesn't seem like he came back in the same public way as the survivors. And is baby Aaron one of the six? So much for us to find out!
We are still asking — Sawyer or Jack?
We are still asking that question and I think the Kate flash-forward episode was an interesting turn of events in that Sawyer finally said she could do her own thing and she'd come crawling back when Jack started to annoy her. It was an appropriate response for Kate to smack him because it was a ballsy thing for him to say, but at the same time it was true, so you have to feel for the guy. He's gotten the blunt end of the stick and it's not exactly like Kate has been fair to him. When she goes back to the other group, the first person she goes up to is Jack, and she's immediately by his side while Sawyer goes with Locke. So for him to accuse her of that was fair. And something that the audience agreed with. But she doesn't choose, so to speak, in the next two episodes — although I do know that, in the last five of this season, there is a lot revealed about that story and Kate's romantic life.
Will we see it in flash-forwards or in the present?
Both. You'll see things on the island, and they are going to be in the present and in flashbacks and flash-forwards. People will be happily satisfied with getting a much larger piece of the pie, so to speak. Instead of being trailed along with hints and gestures and ambiguities, they're going to get some concrete answers.
In that flash-forward, Jack said they made a mistake and they have to go back. Do you think that is a possibility now?
I think that would make a fantastic story. Can you bloody imagine [if] these people we watched for four years doing everything they could to get off the island, in the last two years, they get off and try to get back on? I think that would be a great story!
Do you think the others are still alive on the island?
I don't know, but it is alluded to when Charlie's ghost says to Hurley, "They need you," and Hurley says to Jack, "We have to go back." You wonder if they left people on the island and now they're feeling guilty or are they just losing their minds? Who knows? That's what is great about this story. You never know what's up from down, what's reality, who is insane and who is in their right mind, and sometimes you wonder if it's you!
And then they throw in the time travel element...
That was my favourite episode of the season so far, the one with Desmond. It explains more of the issues of how you get on and off the island. But it also now raises the question of whether the people living on the island are living in the same frame of time as everyone else back at home in the normal world. I asked the writers, "Does this mean now you are saying that when you get on to the island, you are potentially skipping ahead or backwards for years? Or is a day on the island 20 days in the rest of the world?" There is something going on with a missed connection with time, so that's great to explore.
What about Michael and the man on the boat? Do you think they are one and the same?
You will get answers [to that] in the very near future. The eighth episode is a huge reveal about the boat and a huge reveal about the man on the boat that seems to be Michael. It's crazy and a really good episode.
And there is so much going on with the Widmores and Penny...
Yes, you are starting to see the links with everyone and you are starting to see there is not one single person that will be left standing at the end of the story that is not intricately linked to all of the others.
Do you have your own fantasy of where you want to see Kate in the last episode?
Yes, but of course I won't tell. I've always since the beginning had my own theory for the direction of the show and where they are going with it, and because of that, I have my own picture of Kate's last moment on the show. But if I told you that, I'd give away all my theories and thoughts, and that's my dirty little secret. I did tell the world I wanted to be the mother instead of Claire, so I better be careful what I say!
How have you enjoyed filming Lost?
The guys I've been working with so far, I'm loving working with — it's been a ball. But one thing I really want to do is get on the island.
Were you a fan of show before getting the role?
I was, but the last two years, it's been really hard for me to follow because I've been splitting my time between Sydney and Auckland and Los Angeles. Every time I'd turn up somewhere, it seemed to be at a different point, so I was constantly getting myself confused. When I turned up to shoot on the show, the guys were saying to me, "You know such and such," and I'd say, "Yeah, but I thought she was dead and he was pregnant..." and they said, "You're hopeless," but I had kept going backwards and forwards. It's so complicated!
Captain Gault is in the Widmore camp and it seems to be Widmore versus Ben this season. The question is who's on the side of good. What do you think?
I honestly have no idea, but my suspicion is that all of those balances of power are really fluid. I know they know where the show finishes — they know the answer and where they're going — and they're having as much fun as they can creating the most topsy-turvy journey to that destination as they can. My theory is that there are a lot more twists and turns before they're through with any of it.
Would you like to see the captain complicit in it all or just as someone doing his job, not really aware of what's going on?
I don't know — it depends on what's most interesting. It's what makes the show work as well it does — everyone is kind of the hero of their own story and that's what makes it so hard to peg them all because each character is backing themselves. I'd like to see him boxing on with his own agenda and just let it play out.
It would be fun to see him make his own deal and have his own part to play...
Yeah, I'd love that — the idea that each of them works as hard as possible to fulfil their own agenda and each one thinks they're right and they absolutely think they're going down the right track.
This season is moving towards the rescue of the Oceanic Six. It would be good to see the captain involved in that and the lie they tell to cover it all up...
Yeah, and I'm really keen to find out what that is too. It's interesting because we still don't know what the island is. It could be anything and it's remarkable that, after four seasons, all those questions are still wide open.
Source: TV Week