As promised earlier in the week, I’m here to give you the skinny on the specials features inside the Blu-Ray edition of Season 3 of Lost. These are features that can only be found on this version of the season set. Those of you who purchased the good ol’ fashioned DVD version do not get to enjoy these. However, I’v managed to snag a copy, thanks to my ever-understanding wife, who puts up with more theories than any woman should ever have to endure. So, bless her heart.
But you don’t care about her unending patience, I know. You want to know what you’re missing. Today, I’m going to look at the section entitled "Access: Granted," in which producers Damon Lindelof and Carleton Cuse (herein DLCC) answer long-running questions about the show. Now, while they promise "definitive" answers to these burning questions, I will state up front that they hardly ever deliver anything truly mind-blowing in this section of the DVD. Some of the answers merely confirm what 99.9% of us believed to be true anyways, and others are answers I believe were already confirmed within the show itself.
Along with their answers, each section of "Access: Granted" features a specially-cut series of clips related to the topic. Often, these clips merely reinforce what we knew/remembered, but more than a few are spliced in a way to strongly suggest new factoids.
In addition to these two elements, you can also access commentary from five people not associated with Lost but deeply invested in it: Entertainment Weekly‘s Jeff Jensen (a Lost scholar hero of mine), TV Guide‘s Shawna Malcom, Lost: The Official Magazine‘s Paul Terry, and, for reasons semi-unknown, Jimmy Kimmel. I know. The Kimmel thing is weird. Often, these commentaries serve little more than to simply spout out questions about the topic and hand, but in a few cases, they also provide unique insight into the topics.
I’ve tried to corral the best of these three elements below. I will not cover every topic, since not every one is worth mentioning here. I merely want to convey what I feel is the most vital information on this section of the Blu-Ray special features so you, the Blu-Ray-less masses, do not feel left out as Season 4 approaches. (Also, let me reiterate again: if you have the $500, go out, pick up a Blu-Ray player/Playstation 3, pick up Lost on Blu-Ray, and sit with your mouth gaping for the next few days. It’s truly mindblowingly beautiful. And no, neither Sony nor ABC paid me to say that. I’m just a tech junkie who saved his pennies in 2007.)
I’ll deal with one half of this part of the DVD today (there are a LOT of topics in this section) and the other half in the near future.
Flight 815 Crash
DLCC confirm that Desmond is solely responsible for the crash of flight 815. This is one of those "not entirely surprising but good to clarify" factoids. They also state that it takes a lot of work to work through what Lindelof calls the Island’s "defenses" and what Cuse clarifies to be "barriers." Malcom, in one of her two comments that are actually worthwhile, notes something I’ve believed for a bit: namely, that simply because we have a singular mechanical reason for the crash does not dismiss the possibility that plane was put near the Island in the first place.
Pushing The Button
In the editing clips for this sequence, Candle’s line, "The future is in your hands" from The Swan Orientation film is repeated three times, with ominous echo added with each iteration. Makes one wonder, the new context of time-centric issues on Lost, if what the button did was ensure that time itself could move forward, or, even more intriguingly, that time could stop on the Island.
Jensen also makes an interesting point: what if the Pearl Orientation tape isn’t intentionally misleading those inside the Pearl? What if initially the Swan was a psychological experiment that later turned into a world-saving measure? More on this when we look at the section about Marvin Candle next week.
DLCC: "we haven’t seen the last supply drop". Oooh. There’s also a hysterical moment where, in noting that the last pallet drop may have been exhausted by the Lostaways, Lindelof says, "Thank God they’re getting rescued" and then nods his head no while mouthing "no way."
Jensen wonders aloud if there is an entity who is dropping it, and drops it knowing that people are on the Island. He then points out that these people want the Lostaways alive, but don’t want to rescue them. Malcolm makes her second and last astute observation: the parachuting and blinking lights on the pallet drop visually echo Naomi’s entrance on the Island. Thus, the organization who controls one controls the other. (By the way, I’m sure Malcom’s a very nice person, but good God she’s really wasted space on this extra. Just watch it and see what I mean.)
Basically, I’ve had the same opinion since Day 1: the freighter belongs to Charles Widmore, not Penny. He’s sending the drops, he’s sending the freighter, he’s coming to restart the Dharma Initiative, perhaps call it Widmore’s Warriors, and save this gosh-darn world once and for all.
Wow, DLCC admit it was him on the computer!!! Crazy. Now that’s the type of answer I’ve been waiting for in "Access: Granted." They also note that just because it was him doesn’t mean he typed it out. The commentators are all pretty shocked by this, having shared my opinion that it was an Others mind trick, which only proves that we Lost fans often think about the show waaaaay more than the writers do. Jimmy Kimmel, of all people, makes the good point that simply because it was Walt doesn’t mean that he didn’t do it without duress/influence.
In the clip associated with this topic, they go overboard in using Candle’s assertion to not use the computer for communication, in that it could lead to another incident. This strongly implies that the first incident revolved around such communication. Well, what would happen if you were in the Swan, supposedly saving the world, and were told by someone in the Pearl that your work was a sham? You might get mad, right? Well, what if you just happened to meld that anger with the unique electromagnetic anomalies of the Island? That might create one major incident, no? Just saying.
They show the entire video. And good lord, I’ve never wished for low-def in my life. It’s an insane, insane video. I wanna talk about two small things and two big things here. Small stuff first. One: they sure show a lot of eyeball closeups on this video. Eyeballs of dolls, animals, humans. Reminds me a lot of the show’s insistence in focusing in on the eyeballs of many characters on the show. Second, there are many instances of overlaying images together to form what looks like the hexagonal shape found in every Dharma logo. Worth noting. Now, onto the big stuff.
One’s definite, and one’s just my mind going to a weird place. One: the DVD confirms that the backwards "only fools are enslaved by time and space" inside the audio of Room 23 is completely official. That’s great to know, as it makes me feel 8% less dorky bringing this up in conversation with people who say, "I hear you like Lost" and then sit there for two hours, wishing they had never mentioned that word in front of me.
The second thing: there’s a section, about 75% through, that was not show when this episode originally aired. It’s maybe 5-6 seconds of footage of a park. And I’ll de damned if I’m not convinced, CONVINCED, this is the park seen by Juliet when Ben proves to her that her sister is alive with a small child. I have no idea what to make of the fact that this park appears on the Room 23 video, but it’s worth mentioning only because it calls into question what we saw on that video screen in the Pearl.
OK, that’s all for today. I’ll be back next week to wrap up my analysis of this incredibly long, deep section of the Blu-Ray set. And if you like this, wait until I tell you about Michael Emerson’s tour of Benjamin’s bungalow. That bungalow sure has a lot to say, let me tell you.
Ryan also posts every 108 minutes over at Boob Tube Dude.