Not-Henry Gale's Role Melting

As we are in this short lull of time between last night’s “Reckoning” (in which we got our minds refreshed about Desmond and other LOST episode happenings) and the SUPER-exciting new episodes to come, I find myself most interested in Michael Emerson’s character Henry Gale, or…”Not-Henry Gale.”

The LOST Creators really struck gold when they recruited Emerson for this role. I honestly don’t know who else could possibly play this role as well as Emerson.
I think what makes him so good at it is his ability to melt the “characters” that Not-Henry plays all into one, so one doesn’t even notice the transformations as they occur.

Take the LOST episode, “The Whole Truth”, for example, at the end of the episode when Jack brings Henry (at this point we still know him as Henry) out of the Armory for breakfast to get under Locke’s skin. I call this scene “Breakfast with Henry.”

We watch Henry play The Boyish Inquisitive Guest character.

“What’s the computer for?” “Where did you guys get cereal?” “If it were me, I would be asking all kinds of questions!”

He has such an innocent face and demeanor while playing this character!

Jack puts a stop to this by asking Henry if he wants the cereal or not. Then Henry morphs himself to play The Martyr character. He quiets down and looks humble, also with a totally believable innocent demeanor, but it is different than The Boyish Inquisitive Guest’s. It is more adult. He only plays this role for a very short time before he melts into…

The Innocent Instigator character.

“I guess this is my time off for good behavior. I earned some brownie points. You know, for finally drawing that map for Ana.”

BAM. Just like that, Jack and Locke are looking at each other to try to place blame. Henry has accomplished exactly what he set out to do. And he isn’t even close to being finished toying with them yet. Next thing we know, The Innocent Instigator has become…

The Masked Manipulator role.

“Wow, you guys have some real trust issues, don’t you? I guess it’s no wonder she didn’t tell you.”

Again, Jack glares at Locke, Locke at Jack. Back and forth, again and again.
Henry watches. Now for the FUN part, to plant the seeds of awful thoughts into their minds. Henry is having such fun here. Henry melts into…

The Cat Ready To Eat The Canary character.

“What would I do if I were one of Them? Well, there would be a trap, of course. I would pick a dark, secluded place, a perfect place for an ambush. And when your people got there, my people would be there waiting for them. Then they’d make a trade. Me for them.”

Henry lets his words hang as he watches Jack and Locke become more and more uncomfortable.

“Whoa, I guess it’s a good thing I’m not one of them, isn’t it?” (the tiniest chuckle to himself only)

No big giggle or laugh to let Jack and Locke in on it and make them feel better. Henry just lets those words hang suspensefully in the air for a good few seconds, and I feel that we should see a bright yellow feather sticking out the side of his mouth. He then becomes…

The Wide-Eyed Eager Little Kid character.

“Hey, you guys got any milk?”

LOST

We, the viewers, all exclaimed “WHOA! Stop, back up a minute! What the heck just happened there?” Those of us who recorded it watched it again. Those of us who recorded it, and could not get enough of that scene, watched it over and over and over again. (This was me. It is in my library of “TV and Movie scenes that will NEVER be forgotten.”)

As I was watching and rewatching this scene, I noticed how easily Henry Gale slid into each character, leaving virtually no trace of the last role he was playing! If you have the chance to rewatch “Breakfast with Henry”, I highly recommend it.

We know Not-Henry lies.That is easy. What is also so intriguing about Gale is that we don’t know of a time where he has told the truth yet. (Or have we? If I have missed something, please let me know) So we cannot gauge his mannerisms to see if he is lying or not!

He is good. He is unreal. He is tremendous.
I truly cannot wait to see more of his role (roles) in the upcoming Lost episodes.

Thank you for reading,
Tania

**Disclaimer**
My quotes on what Henry Gale said in the scene of reference are not verbatim.

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18 Responses to Not-Henry Gale's Role Melting

  1. Andreas says:

    This is the first post by Tania. I would like to welcome her to the team, and I hope that you all enjoyed the post as much as I did.

  2. Found says:

    Here, here!

    Wonderful post, Tania! I had felt a little ebbing of my enthusiasm in the wait for a new episode. Your post has me going back to watch B’fast With Hank again.

    I suppose you could say that he told a measure of truth when he drew the map to the balloon. There WAS actually a balloon there, but was it just enough truth to attempt to “set the hook” with the Losties? Thanks Sayid, for not buying it.

    Or… was the whole balloon scenario just a stock alibi used by The Others? Eg: “If you get caught, use the name Henry Gale. His balloon is here, draw a map to it, etc.” We saw that Ethan infiltrated the first camp and then another got into the Tailies. Clearly The Others are prepared for visitors and are acting in far more organized fashion than surprised people.

    Would it be too much of a stretch to entertain that The Others brought the plane down? I’m rambling.

    Great post, Tania! I look forward to hearing more from you!

  3. T-Diddy says:

    [quote comment="1485"]Here, here!

    Would it be too much of a stretch to entertain that The Others brought the plane down? I’m rambling.

    you![/quote]

    Funny you should mention this, because ever since the Others were introduced, I’ve had a nagging suspicion that they have been in control all along. Perhaps the LOSTies are lab rats in an elaborate experiment, and the whole plane crash thing was a result of an experiment with magnetic fields (see the Wall Drawing)?

  4. Bernie Stahl says:

    Has anyone yet addressed the constant phrasing of “The Others” referring to individuals being good?

    Not-Henry Gale comment when Jack pointed the gun at his head that He’s a good person. Also, the individual that Ana Lucia kills refers to the ones taken as not being good.

    Just a thought I had after watching last nights episode.

  5. Really nice article, I’m so addicted to LOST ;-)

  6. jimseas says:

    Welcome Tania. Very enjoyable and to the point. But why did you stop?

    Consider:

    The “obediant student” that he plays to Locke’s instructor role as he takes direction as to how to enter the numbers.

    The “kind friend” he plays, also to Locke, after Locke is injured. He does this both before and after the doors rise back up.

    The switch back to “Mr Innocent” when confronted by Sayid. “Didn’t you find my balloon?”

    Then there is my all time favorite, when he’s hanging in the armory, arms spread in the classic crucifix position and gives the “I’m a good person [why is this happening to me]” line. I don’t care what the producers may have said about religion in the show or what kind of flak I get on the ABC boards, imagery like this cannot be denied.

    Now he’s in the “Ghandi” phase: hunger strike, meditating perhaps?

    Looking forward to more of your posts. Andreas and Cecilia have competetion now. Now there’s an Other.

  7. Found says:

    [quote comment="1486"]

    Perhaps the LOSTies are lab rats in an elaborate experiment, and the whole plane crash thing was a result of an experiment with magnetic fields[/quote]

    I thought I was the only one! It’s so good to not feel so alone. :)

  8. Lesley says:

    Geat analysis Tania! Emerson is such a great actor and you are so right the Not-Henry character has many different layers. I suspect that all the “Others” do -they are probably trained in the art of manipulation. Emerson and O’Quinn are really wonderful actors too and when they interact the sparks really fly. Heck, reading your piece gets me anticipating next week. Now I am going to have to watch those Not-Henry episodes again! (I truly love the “got any milk” line it is the very best thing I have heard in years!) I am also in agreement with the theory that this is an eloborate experiment of some sort but I am undecided whether it goes further and the original subjects have taken over the island, are searching for replacements to take their place, or ??? It will be interesting to find out how far the manipulation goes on and off the island, past, present and future. Looking forward to more of your posts!

  9. Len says:

    Hey Tania,

    This was a really good point to raise. I think Emerson’s a great actor. Of course the director is obviously doing an immense job as they actually get Emerson to act each scene 3/4 times before deciding in the cutting room what aspects to go with for each bit. http://www.prestonandsteve.com/audio/199.mp3

    I too had wondered how he managed to do it all so seamlessly.

    Well written Tania,

    Len

  10. Andreas says:

    [quote comment="1489"]Andreas and Cecilia have competetion now. Now there’s an Other.[/quote]

    Don’t forget about Job! We are actually 4 writers on the site now, even if Cecilia and I are the ones who post on a regular basis. I think this is very interesting since we all have our own view of things and different writing styles. New writers with interesting things to say are always welcome, so if anyone feels that they could contribute, feel free to send me a mail.

  11. jbus says:

    [quote comment="1496"]Of course the director is obviously doing an immense job as they actually get Emerson to act each scene 3/4 times before deciding in the cutting room what aspects to go with for each bit. http://www.prestonandsteve.com/audio/199.mp3
    Len[/quote]

    The question is… Are these alternate versions of different scenes ending up on the cutting room floor??? Or, are they being saved for later in the series???

  12. Maurice Tift says:

    I liked it when they mentioned the bearded guy and Henry said something like “What? Him! He’s no-thing!”

    It was said with contempt – but there was a something else in the way he said it and the way he looked – there was some fear and he was pleading with them. Mr. Friendly was no-thing! There was something else or someone else truly powerful and frightening out there.

  13. Job says:

    Great post, Tania. Welcome!

    I enjoyed your play-by-play analysis of Not-Henry’s metamorphoses, and couldn’t help remembering the fake beard that Kate found in the Caduceus station during “Maternity Leave”.

    I have always thought that there is an enormous conspiracy, with widespread manipulation, behind much of what we see, both on the island, and in the flashbacks. The “con” theme is, to my mind, just as pervasive as the themes of redemption, faith, destiny, or duality.

    I can’t wait to read more of your posts. Welcome, again!

  14. Tania says:

    [quote comment="1484"]This is the first post by Tania. I would like to welcome her to the team, and I hope that you all enjoyed the post as much as I did.[/quote]

    Thanks, Andreas, I am thrilled to be here!

    [quote comment="1489"]Welcome Tania. Very enjoyable and to the point. But why did you stop?

    Consider:

    The “obediant student” that he plays to Locke’s instructor role as he takes direction as to how to enter the numbers.

    The “kind friend” he plays, also to Locke, after Locke is injured. He does this both before and after the doors rise back up.

    The switch back to “Mr Innocent” when confronted by Sayid. “Didn’t you find my balloon?”

    Then there is my all time favorite, when he’s hanging in the armory, arms spread in the classic crucifix position and gives the “I’m a good person [why is this happening to me]” line. I don’t care what the producers may have said about religion in the show or what kind of flak I get on the ABC boards, imagery like this cannot be denied.

    Now he’s in the “Ghandi” phase: hunger strike, meditating perhaps?

    Looking forward to more of your posts. Andreas and Cecilia have competetion now. Now there’s an Other.[/quote]

    Thanks, jimseas!

    I stopped because I was only focused on the ‘breakfast’ scene, which was a good thing, because I didn’t want to ramble on in my very first submission, lol.
    And you are correct about these other roles. I got the impression that he really wanted to help Locke when the hatch went crazy on them during Lockdown. I get the idea that Not-Henry is a Dharma fugitive/runaway. I think they did something horrible to his real wife, and he turned tail and ran.
    And he is MAD.
    And through his mindgames with the Losties, what those games have done is spur them on to wage war with the Others.
    While our friend Not-Henry is safe in the Armory.
    I think he has gotten them to do his dirty work, and he is so angry at the Others that he would risk his life (SAYID!) to get back at them.
    But who knows? This IS Not-Henry we are talking about, after all.
    I bet that no matter what scenarios we all can possibly come up with, JJ and Carlton have already thought of it, and like the Others with the Losties, are always 2 steps ahead of us.

    [quote comment="1485"]Here, here!

    Wonderful post, Tania! I had felt a little ebbing of my enthusiasm in the wait for a new episode. Your post has me going back to watch B’fast With Hank again.

    I suppose you could say that he told a measure of truth when he drew the map to the balloon. There WAS actually a balloon there, but was it just enough truth to attempt to “set the hook” with the Losties? Thanks Sayid, for not buying it.

    Great post, Tania! I look forward to hearing more from you![/quote]

    Thanks, Found!

    Yes, there was a little element of truth to the map, but we didn’t SEE HIM write it for Ana, remember? ARGGG, it’s so frustrating! This is what I mean. We cannot ‘read’ him until we SEE him actually tell the truth. Then we could gauge him and be somewhat able to tell if he is lying/telling the truth in the future. But, of course, JJ and Carlton know this. And they aren’t giving up anything.

    [quote comment="1494"]Geat analysis Tania! Emerson is such a great actor and you are so right the Not-Henry character has many different layers. I suspect that all the “Others” do -they are probably trained in the art of manipulation. Emerson and O’Quinn are really wonderful actors too and when they interact the sparks really fly. Heck, reading your piece gets me anticipating next week. Now I am going to have to watch those Not-Henry episodes again! (I truly love the “got any milk” line it is the very best thing I have heard in years!) I am also in agreement with the theory that this is an eloborate experiment of some sort but I am undecided whether it goes further and the original subjects have taken over the island, are searching for replacements to take their place, or ??? It will be interesting to find out how far the manipulation goes on and off the island, past, present and future. Looking forward to more of your posts![/quote]

    Hi, Lesley, thank you!

    The whole experiment thing I have been wondering about forever. LOL, I actually have a theory about it on the lost forum site http://www.4815162342.com
    It is under my username taniasawyer
    I have to work on it a little more as I think it is bigger than I originally thought.
    Yes, definitely RECORD scenes with Not-Henry, so you can rewatch them, he is awesome.
    He has been a recurring character in The Practice as serial killer Mr. Hinks.
    Makes me want to watch The Practice!
    But only if it doesn’t coincide with LOST, of course.

    [quote comment="1496"]Hey Tania,

    This was a really good point to raise. I think Emerson’s a great actor. Of course the director is obviously doing an immense job as they actually get Emerson to act each scene 3/4 times before deciding in the cutting room what aspects to go with for each bit. http://www.prestonandsteve.com/audio/199.mp3

    I too had wondered how he managed to do it all so seamlessly.

    Well written Tania,

    Len[/quote]

    Hi, Len!

    Thank you, and I heard that interview!

    [quote comment="1499"][quote comment="1489"]Andreas and Cecilia have competetion now. Now there’s an Other.[/quote]

    Don’t forget about Job! We are actually 4 writers on the site now, even if Cecilia and I are the ones who post on a regular basis. I think this is very interesting since we all have our own view of things and different writing styles. New writers with interesting things to say are always welcome, so if anyone feels that they could contribute, feel free to send me a mail.[/quote]

    Wait, I don’t want to be an Other…

    [quote comment="1503"][quote comment="1496"]Of course the director is obviously doing an immense job as they actually get Emerson to act each scene 3/4 times before deciding in the cutting room what aspects to go with for each bit. http://www.prestonandsteve.com/audio/199.mp3
    Len[/quote]

    The question is… Are these alternate versions of different scenes ending up on the cutting room floor??? Or, are they being saved for later in the series???[/quote]

    Hi, jbus, good to see you somewhere other than our usual hangout, lol

    I am wondering the same thing. They must have a plethera of killer scenes with Not-Henry ready to use!

    [quote comment="1511"]I liked it when they mentioned the bearded guy and Henry said something like “What? Him! He’s no-thing!”

    It was said with contempt – but there was a something else in the way he said it and the way he looked – there was some fear and he was pleading with them. Mr. Friendly was no-thing! There was something else or someone else truly powerful and frightening out there.[/quote]

    Yea, there was definitely something else besides contempt in his face. I think you put it best. Fear and pleading. Maybe he was pleading them to ask about zeke instead of torturing him so he could tell them something about a nobody. Nice catch!

    [quote comment="1487"]Has anyone yet addressed the constant phrasing of “The Others” referring to individuals being good?

    Not-Henry Gale comment when Jack pointed the gun at his head that He’s a good person. Also, the individual that Ana Lucia kills refers to the ones taken as not being good.

    Just a thought I had after watching last nights episode.[/quote]

    Yes, Bernie I have thought of this, too. When Sayid was about to shot Not-Henry, he says “You can’t do this, I’m not a bad person!”
    And Goodwyn did tell Ana-Lucia that certain people weren’t taken because they weren’t “good people.”

    [quote comment="1513"]Great post, Tania. Welcome!

    I enjoyed your play-by-play analysis of Not-Henry’s metamorphoses, and couldn’t help remembering the fake beard that Kate found in the Caduceus station during “Maternity Leave”.

    I have always thought that there is an enormous conspiracy, with widespread manipulation, behind much of what we see, both on the island, and in the flashbacks. The “con” theme is, to my mind, just as pervasive as the themes of redemption, faith, destiny, or duality.

    I can’t wait to read more of your posts. Welcome, again![/quote]

    Thank you, Job!

    Welcome to you, too, I hear!
    Yea, there are so many dynamics going on it is unreal. Maybe GangZeke is hiding from Dharma. The only time we saw a beardless Zeke apparently working for Dharma was in Claire’s ‘flashback’. But we have to remember. Her baby was sick, she was hysterical, and she was panicking. I don’t know if I trust that flashback entirely.
    Yes, we saw Kate find the very thin beard, cap and the glue. Could be anything. That could NOT have been Zeke’s beard, LOL, Zeke’s beard is wayyyy thick.
    But who knows, could have been a production error.
    Either way, I still don’t trust Claire’s flashback in it’s reality.
    She was a panicking mother scared to death for her bayybayy.

  15. jimseas says:

    Tania: “Wait, I don’t want to be an Other…”

    Ha, I don’t believe that. That’s like saying you’d rather be Luke Skywalker or Princess Leia when you could really be Darth Vadar. Everybody wants to be Darth Vadar.

    Tania: “I get the idea that Not-Henry is a Dharma fugitive/runaway. I think they did something horrible to his real wife, and he turned tail and ran.
    And he is MAD.
    And through his mindgames with the Losties, what those games have done is spur them on to wage war with the Others.
    While our friend Not-Henry is safe in the Armory.”

    I’ve held a similiar idea for awhile, as if he was an outcast.I think his now infamous grin was him thinking: “HA, now they’ll have to let me back in the club after they’ve seen what I’ve done.” I like your idea as well, the whole sitting-back-and-starting-the-war idea. I hadn’t thought of it from that perspective.

    Tania: “I am wondering the same thing. They must have a plethera of killer scenes with Not-Henry ready to use!”

    I am actually hoping they have some outtakes when the Season 2 discs are released. And some bloopers too. Wouldn’t it be great to see Emerson goofin’off! How could Fox and O’Quinn possibly have kept a straight face when Emerson delivered the “got milk” line?

  16. Cecilia says:

    Tania, I wanted to welcome you to the team also!

    Nice first post, I enjoyed reading it. He is definitely a many-faced character, and from the podcasts, all appearances are that his fate will be intertwined with the survivor’s fates in the future–he’ll be “a guy to watch” for sure.

    For future reference, if you are looking for the quotes verbatum, you can check the original scripts (as typed up by spooky of LOST-TV; they are very, very accurate and also include stage direction) here:

    http://www.losttv-forum.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=66

    It’ll help the cause, because accurate quotes keep characters from being misconstrued. All and all I think you did a great job of getting them pretty accurate for the purposes of this post!

  17. Alison says:

    well ican’t say it because i know the answer if he is inocent or not because i have seen it but if you want me to tell you…
    well it is already september of 2006 so it is prabably shown by then
    so he is not innocent because yeah sure he did draw a map to he’s air ballon with a smiley but… when anna lucia and sayid got there… they did saw it but.. they saw the real henry gale who was dead (i think) and they saw his wallet and when michael showed up (he is very shell fish!) he got to the hatch shot two people plus him so thingking that henry shot them but he did
    he shot liby :the girl with hurley getting the blangkets) and anna lucia (the cop)and himself at his shoulder and he let henry get away who is actually the boss of the others… he just wanted to save walt but why do it in a harsh and sellfish and morbid way you know?

  18. Alison says:

    well he is the bad guy
    he is the boss of the others
    michael shot two people dead just for the sake of his son walt and shot himself in his shoulder and let henry get away!!!
    so i think you already watched this because it is already september…

    ps. iam just 12 years old btw..
    iam also becoming an addict in lost!

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