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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Remote Controlled: Q&A with "Lost" blogger Doc Arzt

Hurley: "Let me ask you something, Arnzt ..."
Arzt: "Arzt."
Hurley: "Arnzt."
Arzt: "No, not Arnzt. Arzt. A-R-Z-T. Arzt."
Hurley: "Sorry, man. Your name's hard to pronounce."
Arzt: "Oh, yeah? Well, I know a bunch of ninth graders who pronounce it just fine."
Hurley: "How about I just call you by your first name?"
Arzt: "How about you don't?"
Hurley: "Why not? I remember it from the plane's manifest. I think Leslie's a bitchin' name."
Arzt: "Arnzt is fine."

You don't name yourself after a secondary "Lost" character who blew himself up with a stick of dynamite and stay on the sidelines of the blogosphere.

Doc Arzt -- a.k.a. Jon Lachonis -- founded "Lost" fan Web site, the, before moving on to his latest project, the DocArzt and Friends' blog. He's also a regular source of information for Lostpedia and UGO's TV blog, and is working on a book about "Lost" fandom with a senior moderator from the Fuselage, another killer "Lost" site dotted with theories and inside info.

The Good Doc was kind enough to answer a few questions for us leading up to Thursday's Season Four re-launch.

Anything you can share regarding potential scoops or rumors about the remaining set of Season Four episodes? You recently were in on a teleconference with ("Lost" creators) Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse.

The big thing that people are speculating about is this sort of chronologically center-less format that Damon and Carlton are hinting. The feeling is that there won't be any flashbacks or flashforwards anymore. Rather, characters will be functioning in different times themselves. Should be pretty confusing.

Where are you at regarding "Lost" theories? Anything sticking as a potential road map to the "real" truth behind this island mystery?

I honestly think the island itself is some sort of fountain of youth symbol. It's the cure for everything, the ultimate boon for mankind. The real story, though, isn't in this boon, but how the evils of man corrupt it. The base of the story has always been the redemption of the characters for anything from simple vanity to cold blooded murder. In the end, I'd guess the island will be 'taken back,' and the real story is going to be about these people.

What's excited you about Season Four so far? What's disappointed you?

I'm excited by the pace of the season. It's very clear that they are out to tell the story, and I think fans are beginning to feel less like they are being strung along. The biggest disappointment is the length of the seasons relative to the hiatus between them. I would have rather seen Damon and Carlton get their 'best case' scenario of two 24 episode seasons to finish it off.

Interviews with Team Darlton have indicated that certain characters will have their fates decided by the end of this season. This could be something as open-ended as Jin's "death," or something concrete regarding Claire getting on the chopper, Sayid "thinking with his heart" and Sawyer not being part of the Oceanic Six. Any thoughts at this point on where certain favorites might end up?

Absolutely. I think they have some leverage with characters that were not Oceanic passengers. In a way, I think they resolved that quickly as sort of a warm up for the rest. What about Juliet or Desmond? They could still escape, but would have to live under very different circumstances. I also think that just because you're not Oceanic Six doesn't mean your stuck on the island. I would not be surprised to see some of the characters left behind pop up off the island in the fifth or sixth season. I think Claire is definitely going to get on the chopper as Desmond said -- he's never wrong -- but what happens from there is anybody's guess. Having her die would almost seem passe.

"The Constant" was a standout for me during the first batch of Season Four episodes. Did that episode offer any clarity for you on where Desmond fits in the overall picture?

Yes, I think it really reinforced the epic nature of the Desmond and Penny relationship. That has to be as close to a finely honed Shakespearean romance, or Greek tragedy, as you can possibly get in modern times.

I think all "Lost" fans will agree that the Season Three "We have to go back!" game changer is going to stick for a long time. What was your reaction?

I was exhilarated. They needed to open a new playing field for the story that would head off 'island fatigue,' and letting us know that part of the journey took place in the future and off the island was a bold move that just worked.

Any thoughts on who might be in that darn coffin?

Seriously. It has to be Michael, right? It seems too easy, but I don't think they write this stuff for the people who spend hundreds of hours obsessing over it. It would still be a surprise to someone.

I know you've been on the "Lost" set before. Any stories or interesting tidbits you can share about the experience?

There is tremendous Red Sox pride on that set. I'm not a baseball fan, but I bought a Boston hat to keep the sun out of my eyes and, hey, I am a New Englander... so it had to be either Sox or Patriots. When I got to the set people were coming up and giving me high fives and I had no idea why. It was a bit frightening. Finally, I'm watching Elizabeth Mitchell (Juliet) rehearsing and she starts staring at me with this crazy smile, the same look all these back slappers and high fivers have had all day long, and I'm like, 'Oh no ... not again. Not Elizabeth Mitchell.' I feel like I'm not in on the punchline or something. She cups her hands together and yells at me as hard as she can 'HEY! Another Red Sox fan! Hey, Oakland, 11-7 ... I'm just saying.' Turned out the Sox had sealed their place at the World Series or something the night before.

-- Thomas Rozwadowski,

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Michael in the coffin ... hmmm.

By Anonymous locke fan, At April 23, 2008 at 6:58 PM  

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