Well, the Lost finale sucked…

The series finale of Lost will answer all of your questions. Provided you don’t ask many questions.

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.

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.

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.

Evangeline, as always, gets an 11 out of 10. Or maybe even a 12. I heart her.

CategoriesTV
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
6 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
quentin

Chris, how you and I can disagree so strongly on things and still be friends is a mystery to me.

We’ll talk about this more in a few hours over a few beers, but let me say a couple things.

1) The finale grew larger and larger, had to be expanded by 30 minutes and was still incomplete – there is a coda episode on the DVDs that answers a good chunk of questions. Granted, yeah, it could have been planned better and the answers on the coda episode are pure fan service and a bit dismissive; but it brings us to…
2) They said way up front that not all questions would be answered.
3) The disambiguity* of the resolution is something I really like because it fosters conversation and debate (such as what we’ll talk about tonight) because…
4) This ending bears a lot of examination; it’s not as clear cut as it seems.

So, yeah, as a fan of Lost for the past few years (finally got hooked at the end of S4) I genuinely enjoyed the last episode.

*Why does my browser insist that ‘disambiguity’ isn’t a word?

danm

Guess I’m one of the few who actually “lost” interest in the series after the first season.

Jim

I lost the plot midway through series 3. But about a month ago I started watching it back to back 2 or 3 episodes at a time from the pilot to the end. The great advantage of this is you don’t have the long gaps at series end and can scan back through to see if how they remember things is how it happened first time around.

Yeah, OK, do we really need to know what Jack was drinking in what bar at what time on what day? I’m thinking no, but understand the makers padding it out because it was a hit. So really what we ended up with was a series within a series. The ‘real’ world action was like a soap set within the Island action. The important thing to remember of course, is that what happens to them on the Island is real. That’s their reality.

The Flash sideways after they detonate the bomb isn’t real. It happens to them after they’re all dead. They all die at different times. Some on the Island, some on the sub, and some make it home and live out their lives. But when they’re all dead (in the case of Kate after a grand old age – she points out to Jack she’s been waiting ages to see him again), the Islands gift to them for their sacrifice if you like, is a chance to live the life they always dreamed of. Sawyer’s a cop, Hugo’s the luckiest man alive, Jack’s a father, Charlie’s a superstar etc etc. After they die some of them hang out on the Island, as explained by Michael (the whispering) and it becomes their pergatory. But when the last of them dies, there they are back on the plane like the crash never happened with a life full of different (happy) memories. Slowly they start to remember their reality, helped by Des, and everything comes to an end and they ’see the light’.

You need to see the epilogue to tie up a few loose ends (Walt), but I thought the whole thing is without a doubt the best TV I’ve ever watched. Having said that, some characters were unnecessary, some didn’t live up to their potential, but everyone will differ on that view.

And isn’t it better to finish a story and still have your mind buzzing with questions rather than have everything answered? It’s why we have an imagination after all.

quentin

Thank you Jim, you nailed it on the head.