I was incredibly disappointed with the ending, as I have been ever since the middle of Season 6. In other places I have likened this to a chimera that Heston Blumenthal created which had the front end of a Pig sewn onto the back end of a chicken, which he proceeded to take to a Kebab house and roast on a spit. It fell apart, it was messy, and was pretty unpalatable.
Looking back, somewhere around S4/5, Lost Lost it. There were brilliant ideas, but the writers obviously overreached themselves. They painted themselves into a corner and thought they could paint themselves out of it by creating paintings of doorways that we could all follow them through. However, they are not Trompe L'oeil artists, thay have simply proven themselves to be housepainters with a pretty good knack at painting walls and panels, but when you look back at the finished product, nothing matches up. There is no overall design it's inconsistent and there are colour clashes all over the place.
Season 6 was supposed to bring everything to a conclusion. However, what has happened is that the writers created a new universe, a different problem to solve, so that we would be distracted from all the other problems that they had created and had no solutions for. Yes, they managed to resolve that problem, and there were some tear-jerker moments. However, if you examine what they did, the tear-jerkers were all about what happened to the characters prior to the last episode, not in the last episode. If you remove the whole of the Flash-Sideways, you will see that there is very little resolution at all. Some characters are on a plane, some are on the island, and most are dead.
I am personally very sad that what started as pretty good science fiction, ended up with second-rate quasireligous mumbo jumbo explanations for almost everything. We are all supposed to see the light and view this as some spiritual journey where we are enriched. Codswallop. If the writers believe this, then they have been taken in by their own spin. In truth, the writers are no more than the tailors in Hans Christian Anderson who have woven a tale out of thin air, which has now fallen apart. Many people today are walking around as if they are garbed in some magical raiment, and Lost has fulfilled it promise. I feel like the little boy who is shouting "The King is Naked", and very few people are paying attention.
Some time ago, I posted this:
when it was just about beginning to dawn on me that the entire series appeared, in my view, to be at the edge of a slippery slope from which their would be no return. I predicted in this blog, correctly as it happens, two things:
- That the FST was a construction, some sort of illusion, and
- The Lostpedia Community would not like the blog, and most posts underneath would be dismissive of the idea, and somewhat hostile to it.
What I am amazed at, is not how well I read the runes (it is probably the only thing I predicted apart from Juliet being David's mother, which you would have had to have been completely blind not to notice), but how the idea has now been 'embraced' by the Lostpedia community, and defended to the hilt as a 'wonderful ending'.
I came to this conclusion a few weeks ago, by analysing the time and or geographical inconsistencies in the FS. I was met with a shower of pooh-pooh disbelievers. It turns out I was right. Using the same methodology, the same analysis, I can tell you (because I have been over the explanation with a fine toothcomb), that the explanation as it was offered by Christian Shephard does not hold water, and does not make sense. However, some of the bloggers who refused to accept that the 'shared construction of reality' was a viable explanation to the FST three weeks ago, are now defending its existence, even in the face of enormous contradictions, and inventing contrived and complex explanations to rationalise its inconsistencies.
I post all this with a heavy heart, because in retrospect I saw all this coming a mile off; not just the ending, which I found puerile and derivative (I mean, is this not just LoTR scenario - all who have had dealings with the ring go off to the undying lands except Samwise who has found true love so he doesn't need to go), but becuse in another blog, I compared Lost to a Religion, which at the time was partly tongue-in-cheek.
It is now obvious that to some, Lost has truly become a religion, a spiritual experience, and, in their eyes, must be correct, must be true, and must be defended from attack. Some of the discussions I had yesterday were of the 'angels on a pinhead' variety where medieval theologians used to tie themselves in knots trying to tease out explanations from biblical texts, on the assumption that the texts must be right because God had written it. I feel I need to point out, that Lost is No Religion, and the writers are not Gods, and even if, in your view, Lost is the greatest TV show ever, it would still be possible for the writing team to make mistakes, and have plot inconsistencies that they have overlooked.
However, what is going on here is far more than that. I have the feeling that the Lostpedia Community seems to be closing ranks; anyone who disagrees that Lost is less than wonderful is persona non grata; an outcast, a heretic. In the Middle Ages heretics were burnt at the stake. However, It did not stem the tide, and eventually religion had to embrace those who dissented, and to answer the criticisms of biblical text.
Criticisms and analysis of Lost's plot, its motives, themes and its characterisations will not go away. Lost has been a phenomenon, and generations of literary historians will be asking themselves why. They may well conclude (but I don't think so), that Lost was a literary and cinematographic classic, and deserved its adulation; on the other hand, they may conclude that this was just a piece which somehow caught the Zeitgeist of early 21st Century. It is even possible that generations of historians will be mystified as to why Lost was so successful, just as generations of historians have asked themselves why 1930s Germany thought that Hitler was a good idea.
I know that many people have now said that they did not need or even want the mysteries to be answered. I really find this postition almost impossible to believe. If you take yourself back to when you started watching the first episode, and someone took you aside and said "... just before you start getting hooked, I need to tell you that in the end they will not tell explain what the mysteries are: what the island is, its origin or the extent of its powers, what the numbers are about, the nature of the black smoke, what the guy in the hatch is actually doing", in other words, this show will be about piling mystery on mystery, but never giving you any satisfactory or meaningful answers, do you really think you would have started watching? I know I wouldn't, and I know that many millions who would have started watching in the future, will not now do so.
This is why, in another blog, I said that it was important for Lost to solve the mysteries it had created. In my eyes, and all the people like me who wanted some answers, but even more importantly, in the eyes of those who will now not watch, because they deem it pointless to be bombarded with invented mysteries which the writers never had any intention of answering or solving, for all these people, Lost has been irreparably diminished, and something which could have been great, will now, I fear just be seen as another show churned out to keep the masses entertained, and have no real lasting value. All of its pretentions to philosophy, all of its conceit as being a show which offers insight into world views, will be dismissed as a simple conceit of a pair of writers who overreached themselves, and in the end, could not deliver what they promised.
As I said yesterday, I can see why, when people get so wrapped up in something, they start to believe in it. However, I really urge people to stand back from all this. It became apparent to bloggers like @DaemonRising, who I now regret ever arguing with, that way back as early as episode 2 or 3, that Season 6 was not fulfilling its proper function, and not fulfilling the promise of the first five seasons. The abuse that was rained down on him for suggesting such a thing eventually caused him to leave this place. Yesterday I wrote about being trampled by rhinoceroces; lately I have been feeling the same emotions that caused DaemonRising to leave.
Throughout my time here I have been consistent in my methodology. This is me, WYSIWYG. Sometimes what I have produced has received acclamation; sometimes it has received scorn and abuse. I now feel like Slartibarfast in HHGTTG, who all his life designed Fjords, and, for a brief while Fjords became popular, and he won awards. "I would prefer to be happy than right any day", he says. However, when questioned further, he admits "Ah, well, that's where it all falls down you see". I do not write this because it makes me happy, I do not write this to prove a point, I do not even write this in the hope that anyone can be bothered to read it. I write it because I must. Here I stand, I can do no other.
Yesterday, I tried to write a farewell to Lost. Today I must action this. After a good night's sleep, I realise that although I have enjoyed the debates on Lostpedia, and have high regard for a whole heap of people here, Lostpedia is no longer for me. I am an outcast, a heretic, and an unbeliever. Most of all, I have just got fed up of nitpicking a garment which has so many holes, you don't need a nitpicker like me to tell you about them, you just need a good pair of glasses to see them for yourself; just take off the blinkers and look.
Thanks for all the good times. But this is the End. Goodbye.
- Sean. I for one love what you have said, your strong methodology and your unwavering approach. You have enriched my experience of Lost, but more importantly you have helped me better understand how things work. Whether it is Shakespeare's Tempest, or DL and CCs Lost, the "entertainment" itself doesn't matter. It is what you can do with it. I never had your expectations because I hold a lower estimation as to people's qualities than you do, for that alone you have taught me something. Shakespeare, Tarkovski, Joyce are one time freaks. It is both a burden and a relief to see through the shallowness of much that is talked about on this site. On the other hand people are just using the tools they have. They may not know how to use them but you have offered them some new tools. Well done. Hope to see you soon again somewhere! 14:09, May 27, 2010 (UTC)
Sean. I wish you would stay but I respect your reasons you have outlined. Whils't I dont agree with everything you say, I have certainly enjoyed reading your blogs/thoughts more than I can express. In some cases, it has been an education. I do want to say one thing however. When you say "you don't need a nitpicker like me to tell you about them, you just need a good pair of glasses to see them for yourself; just take off the blinkers and look", you are presenting a discourse which basically says, those who dont agree with your interpretation of season 6 are in your opinion blind. As always, I love reading your convinction, but on this occassion, I sincerely wish you could accept that not everyone who enjoyed the ending are "walking around as if they are garbed in some magical raiment". I don't expect you to. That wouldn't be you. I will miss seeing you around on here. I know there will be so many other ventures out there for you to get your teeth into. See you in another life brotha. I will be waiting for you in the pre-afterlife FS so that we can move on together ;-)--RayShepherdsShoes 18:34, May 27, 2010 (UTC)
Sean, I am sorry to see you leave. I have enjoyed our discussions and debates immensely. I understand your feelings, and almost didn't come back to LP because I felt there was alot of negativity, but after a few days perhaps it will seem like a good idea to come back and discuss your thoughts - something we all love and will truely miss. I am very grateful for your thoughts, your research and your inspiration. I wish you all the best--Annied 18:54, May 27, 2010 (UTC)
Sean, I have followed your comments for weeks, enjoyed them and agreed almost completely. I only signed on today and was unable to post a blog (because I am too new) that I spent hours composing, most after your thought provoking posts. If you get a chance to take a look, I posted it on my page. I am LateToTheParty and the Article is Titled LOST, Engineering and the Decathlon--LateToTheParty2010 01:54, May 28, 2010 (UTC)
Sean, must say I'm a bit disappointed that you’re leaving for two reasons, first you have brought a lot of enlightenment to these blogs with some very in depth and mind boggling information, and second because what I get from your goodbye (please correct me if I’m wrong) is that the debate is over and LOST is no longer worth discussing because it did not meet your expectations. To be quite frank there are few things I myself would have done that would have answered things in ways that made more sense. For example I’d have found it more believable for Rose and Bernard to be Adam and Eve. It’s more logical and the age of the skeletons makes sense. Then I’d have had Claire be the one to let Desmond out. Again it’s logical that she would want to help him after what MIB did to her. There are still a great number of questions to ponder. I would have assumed and hoped that you would be a part of those discussions. Instead you simply leave because you were let down, for reasons you could successfully argue. I have enjoyed your insights immensely, and do hope that you’ll reconsider. --Jellebean 16:10, June 1, 2010 (UTC)
Sean, you've had some nice contributions, but I feel sorry that you missed what was happening on the show. I know you know exactly what was happening on a technical level, all the details within the stories. But I felt it was clear from season 1 this series was about the evolution of the characters first and foremost, and everything else was distant second. The finale brought closure to the story that was being told in a very clear and powerful way, a masterful job. And I say that as someone who is plenty comfortable criticizing the producers. They did get a little sloppy in the final year. They have admitted that they wanted to tell the story of Ilana, and had planned to reveal such minor mysteries as who was in the second outrigger, but as they got into the season, they didn't have the time to do so. That's poor planning on their part.
But they achieved what the show set out to do - tell the story of the redemption of a group of strangers with intriguing and complicated backstories. The mysteries of the island, Jacob, MiB, Dharma, these were all primarily mechanisms to facilitate the telling of the the primary story about the characters - unique storytelling devices that helped flesh out the background and evolution of each person.
What I find interesting is that a lot of Lost fans WANTED the show to be about the storytelling devices - the mysteries - hence why they were disappointed when all of the mysteries didn't get resolved. It's like being a fan of a show, and loving a character who is just and occasional recurring guest star, and then being disappointed when the finale doesn't close the book on that character - but it was never about that character, and Lost was never really about the mysteries. Of course, they had to flesh out a good deal about the mysteries of the island for the context to make sense, and they really did do that. Would I have liked more explanation of some other stuff? Sure, as I was as intrigued by the mythology as anyone. But I was fine with what they did reveal, since the show wasn't about the mythology. And I felt 99% of the mysteries, even if unresolved on the show, can be pieced together pretty tightly with what they did reveal. By the way, how was the ending for the various characters on the on-island stories not conclusive? I don't get that perspective at all. Hurley and Ben stay and protect the island, and most of the rest escape on the plane and go on with their lives. Seems pretty conclusive to me.
The FST was a brilliant storytelling device to bring closure to the characters, and one they clearly had planned from early on. If you were dissatisfied with the show, I think it may be because you wanted the show to be something it never was - a show ABOUT the strange mysteries on this island. It was a show about redemption for a group of troubled characters, with the mysterious island merely the backdrop and mechanism to tell the primary story. --jeffcutt72
sorry to see you go, @sean. i think the dialogue was a valuable one to have & i think the experience around here will be less rich without you involved. i think it's true that as iron sharpens iron, so one [idea] sharpens another.--Ratay1 20:21, June 3, 2010 (UTC)
I still don't see why we can't just have fun discussing our OWN ideas about all the mysteries the writers left unanswered! I loved reading all you wrote, and in fact I incorporate some of it into my own thoughts on how the time travel worked, the electromagnetism, etc. Sean, so many people enjoy your writing, you should be thinking: "Well, since they didn't even come close to answering this question, let's debate what it could mean!" I learned a lot about actual, REAL SCIENCE from reading your posts, and I believe that was by far the most important contribution you made to this site... you got people interested in science! Why pout and run off when you could lead an intellectual debate! --User:Quakerpimp