Lost's Jorge Garcia on His Big Episode and the 'Heavy' Moment Yet to Come
When Lost began, Jorge Garcia's Hurley was mainly used as comic relief, though he's since shown himself to be capable of much more during the show's six seasons. Fortunately for Garcia, he got to flex all of those acquired muscles last night in the show's final, Hurley-centric installment. As he prepares to say goodbye to the series forever, the 36-year-old actor rang up Movieline to discuss last night's episode, the machinations involved in getting guest star Cynthia Watros to return, and the difficult moments yet to come.
In the first season, you had to wait a long time for your very own episode. This season, you had to wait a while too, but at least we knew from the season premiere what Hurley's situation would be like in the flash-sideways world. Was that kind of a relief?
I was still anxious to wait for my episode to show up. I was going through the list, like, "Man, I'm pretty due!" I did get some great episodes leading up to it, though, and I did like the flash-sideways scene where I'm catching Locke just as he's being fired. I didn't know it when I was shooting it, but I kind of liked seeing this Hurley as it aired -- he had a swagger to him that was pretty cool.
I feel like this year, you've had the most stuff to do since season one.
It's pretty big, yeah. The role has been stepped up a lot this season as far as taking control of the situation and making stuff happen. It's been good to have this Jacob business happen so soon in the beginning to give him this whole new level of confidence. He gets stuff done that has to get done.
What do you remember about the first season, waiting around to get your backstory?
I remember it came late. I think someone had a second episode before I even got my first...it might have been a second Jack episode. I remember getting emails from [executive producer Damon Lindelof] saying, "OK, here's your origin: you're actually a lottery winner worth so many millions of dollars and you have bad luck." That's all I got, and I was like, "OK, that's cool," and then I got the script and I was reading it thinking, "Where's my Twilight Zone ending? Where's my moment that makes people go, "Oh my gosh," where's my "Guys, where are we," where's my [revelation] that I was in a wheelchair before the crash?" And then at the very end, it happened that the numbers on the hatch matched the numbers that I won the lottery with, and I was like, "OK, that's great." It was so connected to the island itself that I definitely felt pretty special.
Was it rare to get that email from Damon that answered a secret ahead of time?
For the most part, the communication I've had with the writing side of the show is just in the material they've gave me. If they saw something they liked, they might write to that. That tends to be how actors communicate with the writers on many shows, and I kind of enjoy it that way. I let them do their thing over there, and I take that and mix it in with my stuff over here. Where all that stuff comes together is how we make Lost, and I've enjoyed the whole process of essentially being in the dark about the big picture of the show in order to do it. That's the animal of Lost, and it's kind of been what I've gotten used to.
What was it like to work with Cynthia Watros again so long after your initial arc together?
It was great. It was even kind of out of left field, because from what I was hearing, it was like, "Don't expect it to happen." There was even an announcement that they might have to address Libby without [Cynthia], because they didn't think they'd be able to get her back to join the show. I found out just moments before the announcement that she was actually coming back. It was cool, because that was right before the TCAs, and I went into my interviews saying, "Yeah, I have no more information to give you besides what you just heard. I found out five minutes before you did."
A lot of fans were always clamoring for Libby's backstory and why she ended up in the mental institution. Was getting that answer ever important to you?
I definitely felt like there was some stuff that was left open-ended with her death. It would have been great to have gotten some elements of closure to that story, just because it affected my character directly, but I'm also enjoying this whole new sideways thing going on, and that it's the connection they made on the island that gets them to have that moment of remembrance in the sideways world. It's kind of exciting to think, "OK, how's everyone else going to wake up? How will they make that happen?" It feels like it's the start of something.
I know that in season four, they announced that Cynthia would be coming back for a few episodes, and then because of the writers strike, she only ended up in one. Would we have gotten those answers then, do you think?
The writers strike definitely cut short our season quite a bit. That's something that we might have to find out after, like, "Here's the stuff we never got to." They should do that special!
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