Turns out actor Harold Perinneau saved the biggest bomb for last.
In this week’s TVGuide (hitting newsstands Thursday June 5th), Perinneau insinuates that race might have been a factor in his character getting killed off the show. Telling TVGuide,
“Listen, if I’m being really candid, there are all these questions about how they respond to black people on the show. Sayid gets to meet Nadia again, and Desmond and Penny hook up again, but a little black boy and his father hooking up, that wasn’t interesting?” Adding, “Instead, Walt just winds up being another fatherless child. It plays into a really big, weird stereotype and, being a black person myself, that wasn’t so interesting.”
Now far be it from this TV Addict to take an actor to task for being so candid and refreshingly honest [believe me, a rarity in the sound-bite era we live in]. But boy is Mr. Perinneau barking up the wrong tree.
I mean it’s one thing to be angry at showrunners Damon Lindeloff and Carlton Cuse. After-all, they went through all the trouble of bringing Michael back for what exactly? Quite possibly the most anti-climactic/over-hyped return in television history. But to accuse them of offing the character because he is black? Why that’s almost as ridiculous as the entire Nikki and Paulo story-line.
Not only did LOST set the bar for multicultural casting, the show changed the landscape of television drama forever. Do you think HEROES would have gone to the trouble to create such a — for lack of a better word — colorful cast of heroes and villains if they didn’t see how well the story-lines of Sun, Jin, Sayid, Mr. Eko and Ana Lucia played throughout the world?
Purely evil black smoke monster aside, the beauty of LOST is that it’s the great equalizer. As we’ve come to learn throughout our time on the island, every survivor of Oceanic Flight 815 — from Jack, Kate and Sawyer on down, regardless of race, religion or origin — is incredibly flawed. Like Stephen Colbert, the island doesn’t see color.
It also doesn’t give answers, but that’s an entirely different rant for an entirely different day.