After five years, and over 100 episodes, I sat down today to watch the Lost finale. I have been addicted to this year, for years. It is a show full of mystery and intrigue. It seemed intelligent, and simply ‘different’. The show, undoubtedly placed a great emphasis on character development, and mixed myth and mystery (even the way Richard or Ben would say “hello Jack” was exciting in the first few seasons) into the constantly morphing and intricate storyline. But the addition of those myths and mysteries, create a sense of needing-to-know how it was going to be wrapped up, along with the character development. The philosophical questions, were not answered in the finale. The character development was rounded off beautifully. They wrapped up the season, they did not wrap up the show.
The finale, I am unsure about. I loved the emotional aspects of it. Jack’s death, and the close up of his eye closing, whilst Vincent laid down next to him, was great. Very poignant. It also made me smile, to see the flashes of the first few seasons, of the Oceanic lot on the beach. I loved the way they wrapped up the flash-sideways. I did not see it coming. However, I felt that they tended to ignore the mysteries they’d created over the past five years.
Either way, I am actually going to miss my weekly intake of Lost.
The way I saw the finale, was that Jack died on the island. Kate, Frank, Richard, Sawyer, Claire and Miles got off the island and lived, dying at some unknown time in the future. The flash sideways, was not a part of time. It did not have a time line. It was simply created to bring them all back together, and ‘move on’. This is evident with Kate telling Jack she had she had really missed him. Hurley told Ben he was a “good 2nd man”, which suggests they lived together on the island for quite some time, and then died at some undisclosed time in the future too. But then, if “purgatory” or whatever the flash sideways were, where did they come from? What did the explosion at the end of season 5 actually do? Nothing?
I think they focused far too much on wrapping up the flash sideways thing, yet completely ignored wrapping up their regular lives on the island, what happened next and some of the remaining mysteries. Apparently we’ll never know why there are random hieroglyphs. or where the statue came from, or who the natives of the island were. Where do Darma come into it? And Hanso? Why was Aaron “special”? And most importantly of all, what the hell is the Island? What did electro-magnetism actually have to do with it, and why was it important that Desmond was pretty immune to it? At the beginning of the finale of Season 5 the man in black says to Jacob; “they come, they fight, they destroy, they leave, it always ends the same” Jacob then tells the man in black that “it only ends once, anything else is just progress”, what did they mean by this? What about Jacob’s cabin and the fact that ash could keep smokey locked inside? Was there much point in Hugo protecting the island, now that smokey is dead? Why do pregnant women not reach their 2nd trimester before dying on the island? Where did the smoke come from? Why is Richard unable to age? Why were the kids kidnapped by “the others” in the early seasons? Who were “the others“? Why did smokey suddenly become mortal? Why did he need to be kept from leaving the island? What did Egyptian mythology have to do with any of it? Too many unanswered questions. It was an abstract finale. On an emotional level, it worked perfectly. The drawing to a close of the flash-sideways, was impeccable. To see Claire and Charlie reunited was ridiculously close to bringing a slight tear to my eye, and Sawyer and Juliet reuniting, was excellent. But when you write a series based on mystery, intrigue, quantum physics, and mythology, you can’t just rely on an emotional ending. Perhaps that’s the beauty of Lost, perhaps we are not supposed to have concrete answers, because perhaps that would entirely ruin the whole idea of the show.