Sorry haters: The ending to "Lost" was a powerful and misunderstood end to one of the most innovative shows on television. (2023)

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My high school statistics teacher was one of the first people who instilled my love for television. He was also the first to tell me about a program calledLostwhich premiered on ABC in September 2004. After missing all of season one and part of season two, I burned bootleg DVDs to watch over spring break. When I came back, I was hooked. I followed Jack, Sawyer, Kate and Sun to the end of the series and remember watching the last episode in my sparsely furnished college apartment with a pizza and a bottle of wine. I remember crying. I remember thinking that the final moments: the church and cast assembled and a Vincent (Vincent!) lying next to a fatally wounded Jackit was justHermosa.But when I asked my statistics professor what he thought of it, Mr. Milani was totally against it. I hated that the ending barely even tried to answer the questions. Milani was definitely a man of science, not faith.

I've spent a lot of time reviewing the series over the last few months. This is a great company becauseLostThe disappointing series finale is as iconic as the show. When it aired on May 23, 2010, fans couldn't understand what the hell happened when Jack died on that island and suddenly he was in a church with all his other dead friends. Were they really dead all along? Why haven't you answered every question this show has asked for six seasons?

For years, the creators remained silent and refused to over-explain the ending. They finally gave in andconfirmed that: 1) no, they weren't dead all along, 2) yes, it was a "heavenly" setting in the church where all the characters would gather, and 3) the purpose was to tell a story about people who have been lost and in search of answers There were official plans for aVulkanhell scene. There were also unsubstantiated theories that everyone wasuntil. But the big problem?Lostleft many viewers speechless.

Sorry haters: The ending to "Lost" was a powerful and misunderstood end to one of the most innovative shows on television. (1)

Jack and Kate in church in the final moments of Lost.

That ending, man. That ending opened up an open fandom, pitting the logical against the emotional. As more responses from showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse were revealed, opinions changed.changedsomething over the years. Still, in this iteration, he expected it to fall into that bearish field. But the fact is, the ending is still almost perfect for me. I think a big part of that is because I was always invested in the show because it was about imperfect people who (in my best Barbra Streisand voice)I need people.And if you didn't see it that way, I'm sure I get the point. The problem in this regard is thatLost intervened again and again Pile of Shit on the Road to the End: Eloise Hawking and the Random Sequel to Katey Sagal and Getting Stuck in the 70sLostThe end of was a beautifully streamlined ending to an often convoluted series. It challenged viewers to imagine that nothing matters but people and that, in its own way, it is unimaginably perfect.

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To appreciate this ending accurately, you have to go back to the beginning of season five. By this time, the Oceanic Six (Sun, Kate, Jack, Hurley, Sayid, and Baby Aaron) have fled the island and are trying to live a normal life while being tormented by the fact that they abandoned the rest of the castaways the island threw at them. in a time warp. Locke manages to escape the island by dying, reappearing in front of the Oceanic Six and begging them to come back. The season's numerous timelines, time jumps, and tertiary characters (hello Widmore and Eloise?) make for an extremely confusing season that seems to forget big questions about the island's mystical qualities, questions that were too much to ask, alluring for them to ignore. , but ultimately irrelevant to the story. Action.

And that's the biggest problem. Even if it was for a final season,Losthe kept asking new questions he never wanted to answer. The entire series has always been about surviving the plane crash and escaping the island, and season five could have worked as a season where the six people who left realized the importance of humanity withoutextremelyadditional mythic sci-fi elements. Instead, he released a literal reboot: the detonation of a 1977 hydrogen bomb at the end of season five blows up part of the island and effectively alters history, rendering the original plane crash obsolete and altering a new timeline we see. in the sixth season.

This started the final march to aLostConclusiona resolution that explains that it is the people, not the mystery, that drive the series. The series spent a brilliant final season crafting a thoughtful, if sometimes mind-boggling, alternate timeline that followed the characters through an entirely different existence in which they managed to find themselves. Each character in the final season reconciles their two worlds and realizes that the oneConstantlythey are the people with whom they shared their time.And the finale culminates with a cast of characters rescuing Jack, the man who spent six seasons rescuing them all. From the beginning, Jack and Locke each represented "the man of science, the man of faith", and the show has always wanted to show that the most important thing is to believe in people.

It's a potentially cheesy premise, but there's something beautiful about the fact that there's so much about the series that we don't understand and yet it doesn't matter. The ending requires a level of trust that makes us uncomfortable... a re-examination of our own logic and expectations. During the last seasonLostHe took the step to get rid of much of the baggage he had brought with him. Part of that disrespect had to do with thatLostBreeders who bit off more than they could chew, but it also had to do with arealignmentIn its final season, it intended to focus the series on its intended purpose of "people first". And despite all the setbacks,Lostit couldn't have ended any other way.

I've been trying to figure out the origin of that purpose, which I believe goes back to the fifth episode of season four, The Constant. Desmond introduces this concept that we all have "constants" that connect us to our reality. For the emotionally inclined, it isLostEquivalent to "you are my person." For the crowd wiser, think of it as aStartTotem. So instead of spending the last season coming up with a complete hit list, it took a final twist and introduced the alternate timeline to prove that even in two different realities, we can all bond with human relationships.

The ending itself is the culmination of a realigned premise that shouldn't have been so blatantly ignored for a season and a half. The reason why theLostFinalit failed in so many people's minds because it was the coda of a series that had taken a completely different turn. Audiences expected an ending that would solve the logic puzzles.Lostfrankly, as its creators tried to focus on a shade that was subtly woven together over six years. if you think about itLostas a first draft for the next higher series—the remains jthe good place, that is, the stumbles become tastier.Lostit began and ended when the golden age of television came along. In many ways it is responsible for the brain and complex shows being made today. And, at the time, audiences might not have been fully prepared for a nuanced ending that required a lot of theoretical work on the part of the viewer. Watching it 10 years later, it's an ending that is on par with and expected from some of the best shows on television today, be itthe remainsÖthe good placeÖvigilantes.

And if you're one of those people who just can't help it a decade later, then hey, at least we had Vincent.

Sorry haters: The ending to "Lost" was a powerful and misunderstood end to one of the most innovative shows on television. (3)

Justin Kirkland


Justin Kirkland is a Brooklyn-based writer who covers culture, food, and the South. His work appeared in, with EsquireNYLON,geier, junited states today.

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