As everyone knows, Lost is saying its goodbye this Sunday, 9 p.m. EST in a dramatic fashion: with a two and a half hour epic finale. Some have been invested with Lost from the very beginning where it seemed like another Castaway or an adult version of Lord of the Flies. While I didn’t follow the series from the Pilot episode, I don’t love the show any less from those who did. Lost has become a lot more than just a TV show to me. It has become a religious experience, and no I’m not directing this thought based on the religious themes of the series. Basically, Lost has become my constant for the past years and now as I finally see the end to the tunnel, it feels like something inside of me is leaving.
There are plenty of reasons why so many people have been crazed over this series. There are also reasons why people have been able to dismiss watching Lost. I will admit that I was hesitant to watch Lost from the beginning and there was a moment when I didn’t really care too much to continue watching it. But I can say now that I am incredibly happy that I stuck through all the ups and downs, twists and turns until the very end.
One of the brilliant things that I love about Lost is how it was structured. Even though there were times when the flashbacks aggravated me, there was no doubt it was very smart of the writers to incorporate this formula. It was very effective in the first three seasons by showing us the present, island action and the back-stories of characters at the same time. This formula also slowed the pace down with the present action in order to drag out the series for this long. Genius.
Another aspect about the structure that I love was how each season stands out from the others. Season One was all about survival of the fittest and the castaways discovering mysterious and supernatural elements on the island. Season Two was all about those damn numbers and the theme of faith was beaten over our heads. For the record, Season Two was my least favorite season of the series. Season Three (my favorite) explored The Others and finally started to answer questions that drove us mad during the first two seasons. Season Four was the season of the flash-forwards. Season Five was the most science fiction of the series since it dealt with jumping back and forth through time. And finally, the final season with the flash-sideways that I HOPE gets explained exactly what the hell this alternate universe is.
And then there are the characters. Lost had quite an extensive ensemble cast that made it easy for anyone to find a character he or she loved. For me, it always changed (which I’ll get to my next love for Lost in just a moment). Locke was my favorite character in the beginning, but after his preachings and failure in Season Two, he was dead to me. For some strange reason, Ben was always a favorite character of mine. I know he was utterly hated by the masses of Lost fanatics, but I had the ultimate feeling that he was doing everything for a reason and wasn’t entirely evil. Then there was Sayid, who was just an all-around bad ass. His back-story in the Iraqi Republican Guard and having his love taken away from him resulted in a lot of compelling episodes. When Desmond showcased his love for Penny and after we discovered he was a lot more than just a crazy guy barricaded in the hatch pressing a button, he was an instant favorite. I also loved Faraday for the fact that he seemed to know everything that was going on. And as of right now, I am TOTALLY with Team Jacob/Jack. Jack has finally won me over after years of complaining and whining. He has finally stepped up to the plate for what he was meant to do from the beginning.
All this being said, you won’t find too many people who have the exact same characters they love and same characters they hate. That’s another part of the brilliance of Lost. It’s not about what character you’re supposed to like or hate; it’s about understanding the characters and why they’re doing what they’re doing. Even the annoying Kate has her baggage and unless you’re ignorant, you just have to understand her reason for flip-flopping and being so indecisive all the time.
Having so many characters must’ve been a lot of fun for the writers, but one thing that I applaud the writers more than anything is their boldness and courage to kill off main characters. Even though right from the first few episodes we knew that Jack and Kate were more main characters than side characters, the writers have killed off plenty of favorite characters (Charlie, Sun, Jin, Ana Lucia… okay just kidding about that one) just as quickly as they presented new ones. This simply showed me that this show has balls and the unpredictable factor was always looming over our heads while watching a brand new episode.
What else do I love about Lost? I love the camaraderie between other fanatics of the show and how you can have an unlimited number of inside jokes (Bono got emergency back surgery? He should’ve seen Jack Shephard). And I love how people who don’t watch the show hate it. I don’t try to convince them to watch it, I just pity them that they haven’t experienced some of the brightest moments of TV history.
I love so much more about Lost, but those are the main points. I laughed, I cried, I cringed, I jumped, and for the majority of the time I scratched my head with confusion. I can’t imagine ever experiencing anything similar to the way I felt while watching Lost. Its great achievement is being the most analyzed TV show in history and still being able to wow us with their innovation. All I can say is well done and thank you for the memories.