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Friday, March 14, 2008

LOST souls #2

Last night we were introduced to a new character on LOST. Captain Gault. Don't know that this is significant at all but here is a little info on another famous Captain Gault--from Wikipedia. Sound like a clue to this guy's character at all? Read on.

Captain Gault is a fictional sea captain created by English writer William Hope Hodgson. Many of the Captain Gault stories were collected in the book Captain Gault, Being the Exceedingly Private Log of a Sea-Captain, published in 1917.

Captain Gault seems to be a captain for hire, and operates a different ship in each of the stories. Some take place in England, some in the United States, some in Havanna, and some in Europe. Gault himself is a morally ambiguous character who follows the pattern of many famous fictional criminals: although a law-breaker (he seems primarily interested in making money), he proves also to have a strict moral code. As the series progresses, we learn tantalizing bits of information about Captain Gault: he seems to be highly placed in a secret society; he has occult knowledge about arcane religious artifacts; he seems to be very knowledgeable about gemstones; he is a skilled amateur painter. In general, he reveals himself to have surprising resevoirs of specialized knowledge. Where he got all this knowledge is generally not revealed; we get only these tantalizing hints at the character's past.

The Captain Gault stories tend to follow several patterns. Most of the stories are about smuggling, usually involving a great deal of cleverness; often the plot centers around information that is known to Captain Gault but not provided to the reader. There is usually some kind of misinformation or even play-acting performed for the misdirection of customs officials. Sometimes the deception is in sleight-of-hand; sometimes it is in the Captain's choice of hiding place (which may be in plain sight). In many of the stories the customs officials or other law-enforcement personnel involved are told about the plot. Sometimes Gault's own confidants are fed misinformation so that they can reveal it, as part of the deception. The stories usually end with a smug Captain Gault explaining the plot, sometimes over dinner, and sometimes by letter.