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Is Lost's Mrs. Hawking From Another Planet?

Fionnula Flanagan ABC/MARIO PEREZ

Lost fans want to know: Who is Mrs. Eloise Hawking?

We know she's a mother and something of a mystic, and that her mysterious character (played by the superfine Fionnula Flanagan) has both mucked up Desmond David Hume's (Henry Ian Cusick) life and helped the Oceanic Six get back to the Island. But as Fionnula reveals to us in an exclusive interview, the full story won't be revealed until a certain episode a few weeks out...

In the meantime, if she's Daniel Faraday's (Jeremy Davies) mother, then who is Daniel's father? Could it be Charles Widmore (Alan Dale)? Says Fionnula, "Mrs. Hawking never talks about her past sexual relationships." (Say it with me: LOL.)

And what else is Mrs. Hawking? Could she be an alien? That's actually on the table, or so says Fionnula...

Lost, Fionnula Flanagan, Henry Cusick Mario Perez / ABC

Having already done three episodes so far this season, Fionnula promises she will bring Mrs. Hawking back again later this season: "I'm literally waiting for the car to come pick me up because I'm going back to Hawaii to do another one." That episode, likely number 14 (of this season's 17 hours), explores Mrs. Hawking's many abilities. "I do know quite a good deal [about her now] from the episode that I'm just about to do. I know a great deal about her past and her present and her future. But I am contractually unable to tell you, or they'd have to kill me."

OK, so we can't know who she is (and she isn't telling if she's the cute little Ellie from Richard Alpert's camp in the 1950s), but can we know where she is? Does she ever go to the Island? Says Fionnula, "Oh, I do think Mrs. Hawking can come and go anywhere she pleases. I think she has that capacity. Whether she’s able to control it or not, I don’t know." Hmmm...

Some watchful Lostpedians noticed that Mrs. Hawking wears a couple of quasi-religious totems—a snake eating its tail and a Tibetan Buddhist symbol. So what is Mrs. Hawking's religion, if she has any? Is she a woman of science or a woman of faith? "[Her spiritual beliefs] are definitely not of this world and not of this planet. That's for sure!" Um...not of this planet? I suppose it was just a matter of time before the show introduced aliens!

Continues Fionnula, "I think she's got that wonderful blend of scientist and spiritual believer. When the stars are properly aligned she seems able to call upon great strength. I think she's a woman of enormous strength."

Finnegan's Wake Book Cover, James Joyce Amazon.com

Fionnula doesn't know why Mrs. Hawking's photo appeared on the desk of the abbot of Desmond's monastery. "In fact, I was told about my photograph having appeared. A man stopped me on Bond Street in London last year. He grabbed my arm and said, 'I'm terribly sorry, but I have to know: Why was your photograph on the desk?' And I thought, this man is a lunatic."

We're all mad here, but at least we're in good company. Fionnula is famous in theatrical circles for her appearances in productions of James Joyce's works, and she thinks there's a connection between that writer's literary fever dreams and our beloved, nutty Lost. She says, "I think there's definitely some connection between Lost and Finnegans Wake—James Joyce's great magical, mythical book drawing on seven languages. Yes, I think Joyce would have enjoyed Lost, for sure."

High praise, indeed! Are you guys enjoying Lost this season? Post in the comments and be sure to tune in to ABC tonight at 9 for the all-new "The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham."

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