On Monday morning I woke up on my brothers' couch with the sad realization that I would actually need to get a life. A bunch of us had gone to their place last night for the final episode of Lost and were now met with the hard-hitting reality that our favorite show was no more. A couple of us got up yesterday, made hesitant eye contact and looked around the room with a "now what?" look on our faces. We were like infants taking our first steps- or the only survivors of a plane that crashed on a mysterious island (zing!).
I didn't know what to expect from the finale. This show seemed to have taken over the world- Obama had even rescheduled his State of the Union address so as not to preempt the season premiere. I had never been so invested in a television show before- my brothers and I spent more time bonding in the past six years than we did while we lived in the same house, and it was all thanks to Team Darlton. That would make a great tagline for a business- Cuse/Lindelof- Bringing Siblings Together Since...2004? 1977? Somewhere In The Middle? Who The Fuck Knows?
I cooked dinner for eight people and got to my brothers' place around 6:30. There was a 2-hour recap, followed by the finale itself from 9pm-11:30pm, and then a special Lost-centric episode of Jimmy Kimmel. Six hours of this shit! I was in nerd heaven. When I told my friends, most of whom don't watch the show, they thought I was exaggerating. Nope.
So, here are my final thoughts on the breathtaking phenomenon that was Lost. I'm warning you- it's pretty long, and spoiler-ific, so if you have somewhere to be, or haven't seen the finale, or are just an impatient douchebag, stop reading now.
MY 5 WORST EPISODES:
5) ABANDONED (Season 2, Episode 6)
I was just ecstatic for an episode about Shannon, weren't you? Just when we thoughtshe couldn't get any more spoiled and/or lazy, it turned out we were all wrong. Remember when Boone thought that she died that horrible, mangly death and he said he was "relieved?" Tell me you weren't thinking the exact same thing. Thank God she gets shot at the end. This is the only time I actually liked Ana Lucia, even though it was technically an accident. Sayid, what the fuck were you thinking?
4) BORN TO RUN (Season 1, Episode 22)
Ugh, Kate. She sucked (more on that later), and most of her episodes did too. It was tough to pick the one that I hated the most, but seeing as how this one centered around a toy airplane, "Born To Run" eventually won out. Out of everything you can keep in a safe, seriously, a toy plane? Oh yeah, also, the guy it belonged to, the guy she "loved," died, also caused by her. Way to fuck things up again, Kate.
3) ACROSS THE SEA (Season 6, Episode 15)
This episode was so disappointing because it was supposed to be a landmark hour of television- no series regulars were to be featured and the backstory of Jacob, MiB and the island itself were finally going to be revealed. However, what we got was a bunch of bullshit. Jacob was an idiot man-child who spouted clunky, cheesy dialogue, the child actors were horrendous and we got more questions than answers, all with two weeks until the series finale. Plus, the writers inserted a scene into the end of the episode that was borderline insulting. Not to mention- a magical cave? Really, Lost?
If you look up the general opinion for this episode, the results are basically the same: FAIL!
2) EXPOSE (Season 3, Episode 14)
Nikki and Paolo were so worthless that they only got a backstory so they could get killed off, never to be heard from again. They were even more hated than Shannon, if that's even possible. The only good thing about this episode is that it signified the end of two of the most unappealing characters in the history of the show.
1) STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND (Season 3, Episode 9)
Hey, remember when you spent an entire Lost viewing party debating the origin of Jack's tattoos? No. No, you don't. Because no one cared. And no one ever wanted to see Jack make out with someone as annoying as Bai Ling, either. Gross. However, on the flip side, this is the episode that spanked Team Darlton into realizing that they needed to come up with some answers, already. So at least there's one semi-redeeming quality for the episode widely regarded as the worst one ever.
MY 5 FAVORITE EPISODES:
5) AB AETERNO (Season 6, Episode 9)
Rabid fans like myself had been salivating for the chance to learn about Richard Alpert's backstory, and we finally got it in Season 6. It turned out to be amazing, with 95% of the focus on Nestor Carbonell's stellar acting and no sideways world, which up to this point had not been that well-received. "Across The Sea" should have taken notes- THIS is how a flashback is done. Nestor Carbonell FTW!
4) WALKABOUT (Season 1, Episode 4)
Largely considered one of, if not the best, episodes of Lost, this is the one that hooked me on the show in the first place. Remember when Locke was just a slightly creepy older dude in a wheelchair, kind of a loser who you rooted for, instead of the incarnation of evil? This is what started it all. Terry O'Quinn's performance is amazing. The second that it's revealed that Locke is in a wheelchair made my- and everybody's- head explode.
3) THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME (Season 4, Episode 9)
This is the one where Ben's "daughter," Alex, gets shot and killed in front of him, and we're drawn deeper into the convoluted layers of his character. He was never truly bad or good, and that's why everyone loved him. Michael Emerson's seamless performance garnered him two Emmy nominations and a win, and this episode was most likely one of the reasons why.
Wow, Lost- you don't fuck around.
2) THE PILOT (Season 1, Episode )
When I first saw this show, it was so retardedly action-packed that I thought it was a movie. There was a plane crash, explosions, gore, people running around screaming, a storm, a mysterious smoke cloud, a seriously cute dog and a bunch of hot dudes. I thought to myself, "I don't know what the fuck I'm watching, but I am never turning this off." The show got even better when a polar bear appeared on the (tropical) island and the castaways found a message being looped for 16 years. Then I found out it was a TV show, and I realized that I was about to give up my Wednesday nights. It was the most exciting pilot episode I had ever seen, and I knew that I had to keep my eyes glued. Six years later, it never let me down.
1) THE CONSTANT (Season 4, Episode 5)
OK, so sometimes I'm a secret sap. The phone call at the end of "The Constant" is one of the greatest and most emotional scenes in television history. When Desmond finally got through to Penny and they declared their love for each other, and Desmond finally got back to the present, that was it for me. This episode is on a bunch of top five lists, for good reason. It's flawless, and hints at what Lost is really all about (more in the finale recap). Too bad a talent like Sonya Walger is wasted on dreck like FlashForward.
TOP 5 CHARACTERS THAT SUCKED EXTRA HARD:
Explain to me what purpose these two had. Their storyline was boring and pointless, and the temple itself looked like it was constructed for Universal Studios. They seemed to only be around to bring out Zombie Sayid, who was just weird and redeemed himself later anyway. I was so glad when these two got killed, like, five minutes later.
Shannon was a spoiled brat who wasn't even redeemed by getting her own backstory. She got her stepbrother to come save her from an abusive relationship and then repayed him by doing him in his hotel room. EW. Her only good quality was when she translated that French recording, but after that, no one cared about her except for Sayid, and no one can explain that one. I mean, what the fuck, Sayid? Everyone was thrilled when she got wasted by Ana Lucia.
|This was pretty much her only purpose.|
These two are so useless that they never even get mentioned separately. They randomly started appearing in season three episodes like they had always been there, and viewers just went, "what?" No one cared about them, they were stupid and boring, and they had to go. Both of them got an unceremonious death where they got buried alive, and we never saw them again. Whoops. Goodbye.
|The only time viewers didn't mind them.|
2) ANA LUCIA
The worst part about Ana Lucia was, as an ex-cop who was actually connected to a lot of the other characters, she had a lot of potential. However, she never actually developed into anything other than a massive bitch. Her pissy attitude started to grate on a lot of people's nerves and she never went anywhere, so Michael shot her.
Kate was seriously annoying. Her sole purpose on the island seemed to be ignoring what everyone else wanted her to do. If she was asked not to touch something, she touched it. If somebody told her not to go somewhere, she went there. Her teeth were enormous and horselike. She kept banging both Jack and Sawyer and fueled an intense feud between them which pissed fans off enormously for six seasons ("who does Kate end up with?" No one cares!) She stole Claire's baby and tried to pass him off as her own. She horned in on Sawyer and Juliet's tearful goodbye. She lasted six seasons and refused to die no matter how wounded she got. All her episodes sucked. I could go on and on, but I think you get the point. If there was ever an opposite of "fan favorite," it was Kate. EVERYONE wanted her to eat it hard. Her only redeeming quality was that guys thought she was hot.
|Shut up, Kate! Nobody loves you!|
TOP 5 CHARACTERS I FELL IN LOVE WITH:
5) HUGO "HURLEY" REYES
Hurley was the instant comic relief of the show, the lovable nerd who quoted Star Wars and drove the Scooby van. However, it turned out he was also the common sense; the one that told everyone to relax and trumpeted the importance of the golf course on the island. He was the one who everyone was rooting for, so it's really fitting that he finally got his happy ending.
Sun probably had the broadest transition of all the characters on Lost. In the span of six seasons, she went from meek, buttoned-up housewife to badass, gun-toting vigilante. One of the biggest mistakes made by Team Darlton was when they created the "vengeful Sun" storyline in Season Four, where she confronted both Charles Widmore and her dickhead father, and then seemed to just sort of forget about it and dropped the entire plot. She also had one of the first major reveals of the show, when it was discovered that she could speak English.
By the time the end of the show rolled around, Sun was her own character. The writers knew that she had become something of a fan favorite and rewarded us by giving her and Jin, who had reunited just the week before after a three year separation (not to mention a dozen Lost timelines), a ridiculously tragic death scene that left me practically in hysterics. Thanks a lot.
What makes Ben so awesome is that he started out as the "bad guy" of the show, but he became so intricate and complex that you just couldn't hate him. When "The Man Behind The Curtain" aired, and we found out about his twisted backstory, no one knew what to think because we were torn between hating his motives but also feeling sorry for him. Ben was one of the only characters to make it to the end of the show, probably because everyone who watched loved him and would have rioted if he had gotten snuffed.
|He's still as creepy as he looks, though.|
The big mystery of Season One was "what's in that damn hatch?", and it was resolved immediately at the start of the second season, with the big reveal of Desmond. At first he was just some guy from Scotland, but then the time travel kicked in and my mind was sufficiently blown. From then on the sci-fi elements never stopped coming- flashbacks, flash forwards, flash sideways, flashings (Desmond was half naked a lot), and Season Two earned Lost its place as the greatest genre show of the last decade, maybe of all time.
Desmond also has the distinction of being half of the second greatest TV couple ever. His scenes with Penny are so moving that "The Constant" is on practically every critic's Top 10 Episode list. If the phone call at the end doesn't make your heart stir just a little bit, you might be clinically dead.
1) JULIET/SAWYER (a tie)
Juliet was the most awesome female character on the show. Check this out: at one point she had Ben, Jack and Sawyer all ready to drop trou, and with almost no surgical supplies, she delivered a baby and performed an appendectomy. Plus she got in a catfight with Kate. Win.
Sawyer was hilarious right from the start- he insulted everyone and was a total asshole, not to mention he was hot and walked around shirtless a lot. It was like the writers were setting him up to be the "love-to-hate" guy, but I never really grew out of my bad boy phase, so that didn't work for me. Every girl I know that watched the show loved him, too.
Once those two hooked up, it was like a match made by the TV Gods. Sawyer and Juliet were a surprising couple, but it worked insanely well. They became the heart of the show for me, and every scene they were in together was emotional gold. Some of them were almost ruined by stupid Kate, but Juliet was so great that Kate was blocked out. I can't pick which moment of theirs affected me more-Juliet's death or their sideways meeting when they finally came together again. These two are going to go down as one of the classic TV couples.
Juliet/Sawyer reunion: http://www.hulu.com/watch/151649/lost-kiss
PS- I just watched that again and almost cried.
Honorable mention: VINCENT
Come on, he's fucking adorable.
MY THOUGHTS ON THE FINALE:
Science fiction shows are notorious for having stellar runs and then leaving their fans with less-than-electrifying finales. Lost is my favorite show of all time, followed by Party of Five (quiet, you!!!!), but I did have realistic expectations for its very last episode.
I was hoping the end wouldn't be something really retarded like "we're all dead and this is a weird purgatory" or some shit like that. As it turns out, the plane crash and the island were real, but the entirety of the Altverse actually was purgatory- they all had actually died over the course of the show, and couldn't move on until they all found each other and "accepted" the afterlife. Huh. OK then. Everybody had to remember everybody else, and when they did, there were a lot of tears, mostly from me. Everyone was paired together- Jack/Kate, Sun/Jin, Sawyer/Juliet (!!!!!), Desmond/Penny, Rose/Bernard, Charlie/Claire, Sayid/Shannon (BOO!!!), Hurley/Libby, Faraday/Charlotte, and, interestingly, Locke/Boone, who had a teacher/student type of relationship, in a non-denominational church where there was a lot of cheesy hugging and smiling.
|Aw, everyone's happy!|
Jack passed on his job as protector of the island to Hurley, which I totally saw coming, and in an outstanding moment of redemption, Hurley named Ben his Number Two. That was the perfect way to cap off Ben's character and give him the ending he deserved.
The best scene, by far, was Sawyer and Juliet's reunion, when they both finally remembered the other and realized that they were in love when they were both still alive. I got really emotional and when everyone in the room started making comments I threatened to smack all of them with my ring hand. Fuck off, all of you. I LOVE Sawyer and Juliet. I want a holiday card from them and all of their eventual gorgeous kids.
Now here are my beefs: Are we really supposed to believe that the love of Sayid's life is Shannon and not Nadia? I mean, seriously. Shannon? Go back and watch her episodes (or not). Shannon? Really?
And where was Locke's fiancee Helen in all of this? Shouldn't they have wound up together, especially since her character died a while ago?
Also, I can't believe we only got like, a millisecond of Desmond and Penny. That sucked.
Considering this is the last Lost ever, we didn't really get a lot of answers. Basically, we invested six years only to be told that while the island itself was important, the mysteries and scientific theories didn't really matter all that much. Walt and Aaron? Just random little kids. Electromagnetic forces? Pretty cool, but don't focus on that. The Others? Basically just a bunch of dicks. Egyptian heiroglyphs? Not a factor. So basically, we're left to contemplate character relationships, which were wrapped up resolutely and to my satisfaction. So while I am content with the ending, I do wish that they had given me more.
What I took away from the finale is that Lost's final message was this: Everyone deserves to be happy. Bam. Short, sweet, to the point. The Others took a bunch of fuck-ups, put them on a plane and let them redeem themselves. They gave them a do-over, and everyone wound up with who they wanted to be with.
So give me your opinions, guys. What did you think of the finale? Do you wish it had given you more answers? What did you think of who wound up with who? And does Sawyer look great without a shirt on or what?
So now I actually have to find something else to do on Tuesday nights, and watching my Lost DVDs don't count. Maybe I'll be able to write more blogs. Time will tell.
As they say on the island, Namaste.