The series finale of Lost will answer all of your questions. Provided you don’t ask many questions.
So Balthazar and I watched the entire series, all of it, start to finish, at his house over the past few years. We just watched the finale Tuesday, and I wanted to give myself a few days to digest it and really think about how I feel about it. And I think I feel that it was a steaming pile of shit.
It was really great to see Michael again and finally get some info on what happened to him and Walt. Their story was nicely resolved, just like the writers and producers promised it would be two years ago. Oh, wait, no it wasn’t – they weren’t even fucking mentioned.
The thing is, it was such an expertly executed piece of shit that you don’t really notice its a piece of shit until the very end. It was shot beautifully, extraordinarily well acted, touching, emotionally engaging and, unlike the last couple of seasons, it moved the plot forward at a breakneck pace. But it moved it in the most trite, clichéd direction ever. It committed the worst crime possible for an intellectual series – it was mentally lazy.
Hoping to finally have the mysteries of the Dharma Initiative explained? Keep on hoping. The finale didn’t answer any questions about the island at all. It sidestepped the main story to focus on a plot device we haven’t seen since Pam saw Bobby Ewing standing in the shower. Groundbreaking!
It’s hard to write a review without giving away spoilers, so guess what? I won’t. As pissed as I was by the ending, I would have been even more pissed if someone had ruined it for me with too much info, so with my fellow fans in mind who have enjoyed this show as much as I have over the last six seasons, I’ll end this here. But in closing I would like to note, to all producers, directors, and writers, that if you have created a Byzantine piece of fiction over the period of several years and you need to bring it to a close, take a cue from the series finale of The X-Files. It explains and wraps up everything you need to know about the series mythology in one very nice, and most importantly, self contained, package.
With just a few changes “The End” would have been an exemplary stand alone made-for-TV movie. But as the final episode of Lost, it gargled balls. Having tens of thousands of fans scurry online in hope of finding an official explanation of your series finale is not a sign that things were brought to a successful conclusion. Needing to provide a 16 page episode recap to track all of the crap you packed in to wrap up your series is not the sign of a well-written ending. And having an official forum asking fans how they interpreted the finale is not an indication that you have delivered a clear nor satisfying story. Those are signs that you did not do your job.
The only thing Lost here was the opportunity to tell a really great story and bring an amazing sci-fi series to a close with a bang. What a shame. 5 out of 10.