Lost: Do You Have What It Takes to Join the Dharma Initiative?
Lost: Do You Have What It Takes to Join the Dharma Initiative?
Lost and the Internet go together like peanut butter and chocolate, Laverne and Shirley, or promiscuous fame whores and The Real World.  The masterminds behind the ABC series have created a lot of online content to keep fans busy over the years, with the alternate reality games The Lost Experience and Find 815 being the most popular.  These games sent fans scurrying around the Internet to uncover clues, and eventually rewarded determined players with intriguing tidbits of Lost mythology.  To keep viewers involved in the series until its return in 2009, ABC has unveiled a brand new ARG simply known as The Project.  Players can get started at DharmaWantsYou.com, where they can take an aptitude test that will determine if they're worthy of joining the Dharma Initiative.

The Project initially kicked off during Lost's season 4 finale, when a Dharma-esque commercial for a company called Octagon Global Recruiting aired.  The company's website revealed that they'd be recruiting people at the San Diego Comic-Con, which is where a Dharma Initiative booth was set up.  People dressed in Dharma jumpsuits signed fans up to take an aptitude test, which can now be found online at DharmaWantsYou.com.  The story of the ARG seems to be that Dharma is reforming, which means plenty of new staff members will be needed to participate in shady experiments.

Fans who head to the ARG's website will find a message from Dharma's Head of Recruiting, Hans Van Eeghen.  The message states: "A new research project is about to commence which will play a vital role in furthering the Dharma Initiative's objectives.  We require research volunteers to assist in a range of unpaid positions.  Complete an Eligibility Test to enroll in our Volunteer Recruiting Program.  Over a number of weeks, you will undergo a series of tests scientifically designed to assess the most appropriate research role for your talents and abilities.  Join today."

The ARG is still in its very early stages, so right now only one eligibility test is available on the site.  It's composed of a series of multiple-choice questions, some of which ask you to associate a word with a certain picture (such as the one seen above), and others that ask how you'd react in certain situations.  After answering 17 questions, you can register with the site and receive updates when new tests become available.

While The Project is certainly a fun way to pass the time until Lost's fifth season kicks off next year, the real question is what it means for the future of the series.  Can viewers look forward to the return of the Dharma Initiative next year?  All of the clues make it seem likely, but we won't know for sure until the series returns in February of 2009.

- Don Williams, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of ABC)

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