I finished the series Sunday evening and I spent a good 15 minutes crying after doing so. This experience has been a whirlwind and now that it's over, I don't know what to do with myself. I can't imagine what all of you LOST fans did with yourselves at the end since you were invested for YEARS. Just a few weeks' investment stings now, here at the end. (If you missed it, here is my take on seasons 1-3 here).
Leaving the finale of season 3 and entering season 4, I knew I was in for something that was a little different. I didn't realize, however, just how different it would be. From this point, every season was 10 episodes shorter than the first 3, the rules began to change because people had left the island, and on top of that there were no longer flash backs, but instead, flash forwards. Time travel came into play with a few other science fiction twists, and the series stopped basing the mysteries on what happened in the plot as much as it depended on how the story was told (what information was revealed until what moment, etc). I certainly felt like I was watching a different version of the show.
At the beginning of Season 4, all I wanted was for everyone to mourn Charlie, acknowledge his sacrifice, and basically mention him in every conversation they had. This, however, was an expectation I knew could never be fulfilled. I watched season 4 so quickly that it's hard to remember all that happened. I think it was such a haze because the flash forwards were such a surprising idea. I loved it and thought it was unique. Seeing these characters in new situations, in different lives than what I could have ever expected blew my mind. Each new twist and unexpected turn seemed to land with more punch just because the nature of the show was so strange. I tried to keep notes to help myself keep track of some things, but ever so often I would write "I miss Charlie" with a sad face. At least Hurley hallucinated him once, which is still one of my favorite moments of the show. At the end of this season John Locke was dead and I had no idea where we would go next.
Then season 5 came. This one took me the longest to get through. It was the only one that took me longer than a week to watch. It tested me the most of all 6 seasons. There were moments of season 5 where I just had to cock my head to the left and go "WTF LOST!" I don't really do the SciFi thing, so when it ventured into that territory... I got nervous. Of course the thing that kept me going was my love for the characters, and the fervent promise that Season 6 was much better. When the Oceanic 6 finally got back to the island, things got a little better (though I felt the way they got back was SO silly; HOW did that work?! And how does Eloise know that doing that would work?? Ugggh, that is my only continued annoyance from the show). I felt much more comfortable with everyone being back together and on the island, even if they were in a foreign time. And this finale really left me sitting with my mouth hanging open. I felt the season 5 finale was better than the whole rest of the season's episodes combined. Plus, knowing that everyone who watched this on TV had to wait an entire 6 months between that ending and the beginning of season 6 made me crazy!
Luckily for me I was able to put disc 1 of season 6 in immediately. And it was like Christmas. We were back on the plane and everything was starting over. For the first time since season 3 I felt the extreme need to go on without looking at the clock or stopping for meals. I loved seeing what it would have been like if the flight had never crashed. I loved seeing the alternate reality, or these "flash-sideways." Again, it was SO unique. It's something I think every fan of any show wants to play around with. What would these same characters do if they were in this different situation? Would these characters be friends? How would they act/grow/react here? It was just amazing!
I felt like in season 6, LOST regained it's footing and was rooted once again in what I loved so much, the characters. We were finding out what it would have been like for each character to live in a psudo-regular life. I actually liked alternate-reality-Ben, teaching European Lit at a high school. I couldn't get enough of Sawyer as a police officer (ZOMG). And, not to mention the thing that I had been waiting for the entire last 3 seasons, Charlie lives!!!! (Of course in true Lost fashion, Charlie started out basically dead and I was LIVID for a good 10 minutes, until they revealed he was ok. For almost the entire series it seemed the only main character who actually died and stayed dead was Charlie, my favorite character. It was Lost's way of personally flipping me off.)
The Cast and Characters
I'm in love with this cast, hence the reason I've used mostly cutesy cast pictures in this post rather than screen caps from the actual show. They are so adorable and affectionate together, much like the Lord of the Rings cast that I love so much. (Secretly I believe the cause is Dom, I mean he is the common denominator.)
Charlie is still my favorite, but now I am sure Sawyer is a fast second. After he spent a good 4 episodes or so being so protective of Claire I knew that he had won my heart. Seeing him in the leadership role when he was working for the Dharma Initiative was really great for his character, too. He really just got better and better with time. And I really liked him with Juliet! I thought it was a good match and he really did love her so much. Definitely one of the saddest moment of the whole series was when she fell in the season 5 finale. I couldn't stand how sad Sawyer was in the next few episodes after that.
That leads me to the fact that Jack and Kate ended up together, which I was ok with! He wanted her so badly, and if she really loves him and will treat him right, then I approve. Plus they were both kind of a hot mess by the end of the series. I loved Jack's alternate-reality, having a son and taking Claire in, his sister. Both elements struck me as very sweet.
I knew it was inevitable that Jack would try to fix everything for the final time through some sacrificial gesture. I think that may have been why I actually cried all the way through the fight that he and Smoke Monster Locke had near the end. That, and I hated seeing Jack and Locke fight, two characters I really love. I know that that version of Locke wasn't really him, but it was still emotional for me to see, for some reason. Yes I said I like Locke, the REAL Locke. His story, like no other character, brought me to tears every time. He was so sad and pitiful and in need of something good to happen. And it NEVER did! I just felt such sympathy for him, I can't help it.
Sun and Jin had perhaps one of the saddest stories of all. First they fake us out with Jin not making it off the freighter, then reuniting them only to have them both die in the submarine. With Sayid! Who I was disappointed to see be "claimed" by the darkness. Thankfully he redeems himself, but I agree with my friend, Amanda, that there was so much more they could have done with him. My attachment to Desmond is the one that really surprised me. I absolutely loved him by the end of the series. It didn't hurt his case that he named his son after Charlie. I think that actually made me tear up, haha.
To sum up:
Favorite characters (I made two spot tie, I just can't choose):
- Jack and Hurley
- Son and Jin
- Charlie's death
- Juliet falling/Sawyer trying to save her
- Son watching the freighter explode
- Son and Jin in the sub
- Locke's entire life
The Finale: Choose your side
I didn't really know what I expected from the finale, but it was at the point of Sayid and Shannon's reunion that it became clear: I needed to see Charlie and Claire together and get a glimpse of what I wanted from that story that they DEPRIVED me of while he was alive! As I realized this is what I really needed, I said "This must happen, and if it does, I will be totally happy." Luckily, it came true and THEN some.
When I finished the series, it wasn't but a few seconds after I posted my positive feelings about the ending that I got a few negative responses about it. People are passionate about the ending of this show no matter which direction they go with it. It's my understanding, however, that the two sides are very different types of viewers. The viewers who watched the show for the mysteries and for the answers were generally disappointed by the emotional ending with few explanations, but the viewers who watched because of their love for the characters were mostly satisfied with its poetic farewell. And then, of course, there were those middle-grounders who loved it just as much as they hated it. I guess those viewers like both elements of the show equally.
Luckily for me, I absolutely adored the ending. I knew that I would. My friends who watched Lost loved it too, and most of them told me based on how I tended to talk about the show that I was prepped to enjoy the ending. I have said from the beginning that the show is about characters. It is interesting with the plot twists and such, but what kept the show afloat were the characters. That's at least what kept me watching. I loved those characters so much I knew I had to stick with them, and I believe the writers knew it too. Which is why in the end, the finale was centered around friendship, homecoming, love, and feeling that emotion that everyone needs to feel at an end. Not a detached unveiling of answer after answer, but a personal and loving conclusion that bids these characters goodbye with an embrace.
For those unhappy about it, here is a pretty neat video you may find amusing! My LOST friends sent it to me.
Also, for LOST finale lovers and haters alike, this is a great video from the guys over at How It Should Have Ended. HILARIOUS. Check it out.
The show is just beautiful, and now I absolutely understand why so many people count it among their favorite TV shows of all time. I've already begun to add the box-sets to my collection. Watching it again will be a trip for sure, and the next time I may try and make Justin join me. I only wish there was a way to go back and re-watch it... but for the first time!
Also, I want this T-Shirt.