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‘Lost’ and found

"Lost," the desert island drama that keeps you searching for clues, blogging about theories and scouring your neighborhood library for those incredibly obscure books it references, finally returns to primetime this month.

Jorge Garcia, who plays happy-go-lucky Hurley on the show, doesn't claim to know the answers to the "Lost" riddles. He just loves what he's doing, he digs it that the fans do, too, and is ecstatic that his current gig is better than working at Borders. (He does have his own doll now—it doesn't get better than that.)

The first new episode of "Lost" since Nov. 8 airs Wednesday, Feb. 7 at a new time, 10 p.m. ET/PT. What should you expect? Well, the castaways will continue hunting for the black smoke monster, staging rebellions against the Others and keeping viewers in the dark about the meaning of it all. As for Hurley, that nasty curse of his won't stop him from laughing it up with Cheech Marin or looking for love again.

When is the next Hurley-centric episode? And will it be more cursed Hurley or more lovey-dovey Hurley?
Episode 10—the fourth episode in, February 28—definitely has a curse in it. It deals with Hurley and his dad.

And Cheech Marin is playing your dad—what was it like working with him?
It was a blast. We had a lot of time to just hang out and talk and tell stories. I've been a fan of his for a long time.

Do we learn any more about Hurley's mental health issue and those damn lottery numbers?
They do talk about the time in the institution. The numbers themselves don't show up as much, but the curse is definitely part of it.

Everyone was disappointed when the Hurley love story, well, died…no pun intended…
So was I. Guys like me don't get love interests—you never see that on TV. So it was sweet to get to do that. And I loved working with Cynthia [Watros, who played Libby]. She was probably the most fun in between takes of anyone I've worked with. She always kept it light, always had a great attitude, even when the end was approaching.

Do you think Hurley will get a second chance at love?
I'd love it. I think it'd be a lot of fun. It's great when it's your job to fall in love—it's always a good day.

Do you keep up with all the Internet buzz surrounding the show?
I actually surprise people how much I keep up. I like to listen to podcasts and find out what the buzz is, what they're talking about, what the criticisms are of certain things. Someone was complaining about how they did CPR in one episode. The next person that had to do it, I was like, "Listen, don't bend your elbows!" [Laughs]

What rumors or theories about the show have really caught your eye?
I'm mostly impressed by how long some of them are, how detailed. Someone had this whole giant thing—I think they called it the "Ultimate Theory of 'Lost'"—and it was just pages and pages. I never read it, but someone went through and basically wrote a thesis on us.

Do you have your own theories?
No, I let the audience come up with them now; I just like to listen to what they come up with. We theorized Season 1 and then after that, no.

What is it about Hurley that makes him so likeable?
I think he definitely has an everyman quality to him. In many ways, he's like the moment when the others can relax for a minute. Everything is so intense and scary, and Hurley is just more day-by-day and a little more easygoing.

And you're an action figure now—those "Lost" figure are amazingly lifelike.
Yeah, they scanned our faces and everything. It's fantastic…pretty surreal. It's definitely a great status symbol.

Is that an easy gift to give now?
Yes, but it got a little hard to find them. Actually, I did a promotion at a New York Toys "R" Us and they had a whole bin of Jacks, a whole bin of Charlies and then the bin of Hurleys wasn't as full as the other ones. But…well, only because I was the only one there signing! [Laughs] I'm not saying…! [Laughs] I just took the whole bin and wheeled it up to the counter and said "I'll take them all!"

Do you ever go back to your old stomping grounds at Borders, just to say hello?
You know, I was tempted to go by this last Christmas. I like going during the Christmas season, because that's the hairiest time, just to go and [know] that I can leave at any point. But I don't want to just go because I'm going to gloat! I want to really be looking for something when I go.

What are your favorite TV shows?
"Studio 60"—I just got caught up. I love that show. And I love watching "Heroes."

Who is your favorite "Hero"?
Well, it's hard not to fall in love with Hiro. He's just a charming character.

Hiro is like their Hurley.
[Flashes one of those big teddy bear smiles]

"Lost" returns Wednesday, Feb. 7 at its new time, 10 p.m., on ABC.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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