Awhile ago I asked over at the ACIN Talkback about the possibility of Sayid or someone being able to defuse the huge stack of C4 explosives without blowing themselves up. Well our resident expert Xiphos toke the time out to send me an explanation via e-mail and this is what he said.
I was looking at your blog today after spending the last four days sweating my ass off in the California desert and noticed that you posed a question about the C4. Short answer, It's easy to defuse. Can you visualize the stack of C4. If you remember there are some wires connected to a a metal looking piece stuck inside the explosive? That metal looking piece in the C4 is the detonator. Either remove the electric wire from the detonator or remove the detonator from inside the C4. Easy peaszy its all been rendered safe.
C4 is among the most stable explosive there is. You can mash in your hands, slap it on the wall, use it like silly putty(sort of works to pick up words and pictures like SP) Its so stable that you can light it on fire and use it like sterno. It needs a detonator in order to ignite. The detonators run on an electric current, thus if you remove the power source from the equation C4 just sits there. Although I'm sure the writers came up with some sort of booby trap on it or something but I'm not smart enough to figure out what they could do.
The whole C4 set up was hugely silly. It looked cool for a cliff hanger but it was actually way over what you would need and inefficiently set up. Hey it's Hollywood and they are a visual medium. I doubt they would like to show the ships superstructure, fuel tanks and the crawl spaces fore and aft. which is where you should put C4 to blow the whole ship into tiny parts. It's much better for them to show one location with a pile of explosives.