Monday, May 24, 2010
Lost: The End
I arrived home from watching the Lost finale an outright wreck. For two and a half hours I had been amazed, distraught, upset, overjoyed, sad, happy, frustrated, relieved and everything in between. I came close to crying at least twice and was literally perched at the edge of my seat for the duration of the show.
At first I was only confused. While they had resolved the storylines they had not answered a single mystery question in the entire finale and while "disaster" was averted, we were never told what that disaster was. So many questions lingered in my mind as I tried to process the 210 minutes of data that had just entered my brain.
I went to sleep in a near stupor, and woke up enlightened.
For 6 years I have invested my time and mental energy into the intertwining web of enigma and character that make up Lost. I screamed at the finale of season 2, knowing that my mission in Brazil would prevent me from seeing the next chapter for two years. For six years we would take one step forward only to take two step backs. We would unveil and answer, but in the process unearth only more questions. And when it all boils down to it, I don't want to know the answers.
I haven't been watching for six years because of the answeres, I've been watching because of the questions. Questions that involved time-travel, religion, faith, good, evil, secret organizations, mythology, immortality, rabbits and fried chicken.
To unload a two and a half hour marathon of pure answers, wrapping up each and every loose end, would rob the show of its most alluring aspect, stripping it of its purpose and betraying its legacy.
In the end, Lost gave me exactly what I wanted. Resolution for the characters and a stack of questions to continue debating in my mind for a long, long time.
Now, I feel as though I've lost an old friend. Or rather, a number of old friends. Jack, Hurley, Sawyer, Locke, Sayid, Desmond, Faraday, Miles, and of course, the rapturously beautiful Kate. These beings are works of fiction, creatures of the mind, and yet I know them. I have shared in their experiences, laughed with them in their victories and cried with them in their pain.
That is why I watch television, and movies, and read books. There are so many people who act as though giving-in to a work of fiction is a thing of weakness. They puff up their chest and boast of being better than such trivial things of make-believe. They scoff at the water-cooler conversations about last weeks episode as though they were witnessing the actions of children on a playground.
I legitimately pity these people, for they are so wrong. Granted, not all television is created equal. To squabble about who's sleeping with who on Grey's Anatomy is hardly the mind-wrinkling potential of our creative conscious. I do not say this to mock fans of such shows, but instead suggest that one man's trash is another man's treasure, and the truly poor man is he who finds no treasure at all.
Still, all bias aside it is an undisputed fact that Lost will go down in the books as one of the, if not THE, most pivotal and transformational productions of American Television. It shook the very limits of the status quo and gave viewers not just what the wanted, but challenged them to think beyond their understanding. Television itself has now been dared to do better, to be better. Lost will make history, and if for nothing else but that, I'm glad to have been able to participate in its amazing journey these last 6 years.