Thursday, May 27, 2010

Leap of faith

Alright, Lost. Be forewarned that this is full of spoilers about the season finale, so if you have yet to see it or any of the show and don't want it to be ruined, stop reading now.

I told myself I was not going to write about my opinion of the season finale. Everyone and their mother did that via facebook status updates. General consensus: you either loved it or you hated it. Perfect or awful. I was not going to subject anyone to my opinions, but then Nicole wrote a blog about it, and now I want to too. I'm such a copycat. So this is my responded blog to her blog about the finale of Lost.

It's hard to even know where to start. I guess my initial reaction. BAD. I called Nicole right after it was over and yelled at her about how I hated it (sorry about that) and how disappointed I was. However, I've had time to calm down since then and think about it. I guess I just have so many questions I felt were important to be answered that were just left for our interpretation. However, Nicole reminded me in her blog that this should have been expected. Lost has always left things up to the audience to interpret, which is one of the things I've always liked about it. As I mentioned before, I liked being confused. Here are some of my questions:

*If the LA timeline was a flash-sideways as the writers like to call it, and if it was created by the people on the Island as a place where they could all be together and find peace as Christian suggested, then why didn't everyone instantly recognize each other? Why did Desmond have to almost kill everyone to get them to see the truth? I like the idea that the people on the Island created this place where their lives could be different and they could all be together at peace, a place where Sawyer is a law abiding citizen, where Jack has an adorable Jonas Brother for a son and where someone FINALLY tells Sayid that they think he is a good guy (thank you Hurly! That might have been my favorite part of the entire show). Anyway, I like the flash-sideways a lot, I just don't understand it. I also like that the creators of Lost made up a new term and I hope other people use the flash-sideways. As long as they explain it. Maybe I will.

*Kate tells Jack that they are all meeting in the church and then leaving. Leaving what? Going where? I need to watch it again. I think Christian explains this a little, but still cryptically. The fact that they all meet in a church and there was a white light behind the doors implies that they are all going to Heaven, however not all of them are dead. I believe that the flash-sideways is a real place, as the writers implied, and if it is the place the characters can all be together, why do they have to go anywhere? Why can't they stay there and live together with their new lives together? Is it because Kate is still a criminal and Sayid is still a killer? Do they have to go someplace else to be able to have normal lives? From the beginning I hope the show would not turn into a everyone-is-dead-and-the-island-is-purgatory-on-the-way-to-heaven thing, so this might be the reason for my initial disgust. They were in a church for Pete's sake; it looks a lot like they went to heaven. BUT they are not all dead. So where did they go?

*What's with Ben? If everyone in the church is at peace and moving on, what's Ben going to do? Everyone in the church had someone, they were all paired but Ben never had a love interest. The only person he ever loved was Alex, who he sort of killed. SO, does this mean he is going to stick around in the LA timeline for a while, fall in love with Danielle and then adopt Alex? Then does he get to go? Then do Alex and Danielle get to see what everyone else saw? Basically I want more show. I need to know what is going to happen to EVERYONE. I did not have this problem with the last Harry Potter book. I was cool then with the weird flash forward ending and not knowing 100% what happens to all the characters. I guess with Lost it's different. I want to know what happens to everyone. To baby Jin/Sun, to Aaron, to Walt, to baby Charlie. Ok that's all the kids, but still, I want to know what happens when that plane lands with everyone on the Island. I just want to know everything! But Lost has never been into the whole tell-all thing.

*What's with the whole church scene anyway? This is more a point about something I did not like rather than a question I have. It reminded me of the part at the end of Return of the Kings, one of the 6 million places the movies could have ended where the hobbits all see each other again once Frodo wakes up. I hate that part. They are all hugging and jumping on the bed, then everyone else comes in and they are all laughing and standing awkwardly watching all the hobbits frolicking on the bed. I half expected Gimli to jump on the bed and start tickling everyone. If felt the same way about the church scene. Everyone was hugging and passing around Turnip head, and I just did not like it. I liked that they were all together and happy, but it could have been done another way, in any other place.

*Alright, the last scene while the credits rolled. Empty beach. Plane crashed, no people. You know what this makes me think? That everyone is dead and the Island WAS purgatory and the LA timeline WAS heaven. Anyone else? To me that was the writers saying, oh look, this is really how the beach was after the plane crash. Empty, because everyone was DEAD. But, this might just be me. Really I could have it all wrong, it wouldn't be the first time. I usually have to get Nicole to explain everything to me which is why this season has been rough to watch without her. I mean, we skyped, but it's not the same. Anyone else have a theory about the empty beach? I mean, it could have just been a scene of the beach after everyone left. There were no bodies, so perhaps I'm wrong. I hope I'm wrong.

Ok, so those are my questions. Just a few among millions really, but those are the pressing points. On to the things I liked about the finale, because come on, it was Lost, and I love Lost, so obviously I liked a lot of it.

*I liked how Jack was the last one to understand what was going on in the LA timeline. Everyone else fell for it immediately, the moment they saw the flashes of their Island lives, they knew what was going on. It was just great to see Jack reject the idea instead of believing, because that's how his character has always been. It's impressive that the writers were able to keep character traits like this going for six complicated seasons. And as Nicole said, the show has always been about the characters. And I agree, it would have been nice to see what was with the Man In Black more and all that jazz, but I also like that it was totally character driven from the start. Solid characters are as hard to come by today as original plots.

*Those romantic love montages. I'll admit, they were repetitive, and each time it happened was the exact same way it happened a moment before to the point where we probably did not need to see them all happens, but I liked them none the less. The one with Jin and Sun almost made me cry. And as much as I hated Sayid and Shannon together, I loved their flashes, mainly because they were form the first season which I loved SO much. And I liked how Hurly and Boon just sat there and watched. Funny guys. I never actually realized that every single character I cared about was paired up with someone else until that episode, how silly of me! I'm a sucker for the love stories in Lost, I admit it.

*I love that the Island is straight up magic. Have I said this before? I think I have, but I'll say it again. Thorough the six seasons we were always trying to figure out what was with the Island, why it healed people or killed pregnant mothers or why there was a smoke monster or what that weird light thing was. But it turns out that the Island is straight up a magic Island. That explains everything. All along Dharma and the castaways were trying to use science to explain away the things going on on the Island, when really they should have listened to Locke (the real one, not 2.0) and just have faith that everything happened for a reason. The Island is Magic, so of course setting off that bomb at the end of season five would create a flash-sideways timeline where everything is different. Duh. That's what magic Islands do. Magic.

*Vincent and Jack. Sigh. I wanted to cry when Jack died, but I just didn't. Even when Vincent came to lie with him. I guess years of biting the inside of my mouth and tongue to stop from crying during movies had made it harder to let those tears flow. But I was crying on the inside. All along Jack has been all about "if we can't live together, we'll die alone," and there he was, dying alone. Then along comes Vincent, the poor dog who's owners always ended up dead. Good form writers. That scene was a keeper. I still have this secret wish that the entire finale had been all from Vincent's Point of View over the last six seasons, but I'm sure that is just me. I'm sure he has had his fair share of adventures. He probably knows exactly what is going on, but no one bothered to ask him.

*Locke's friendly smile before he goes into the church. I'VE MISSED THAT SMILE! John Locke has been one of my favorite characters from the first season. He was always so kind and full of faith, it was hard not to like him. I was always mad at Jack for not listening to him at least a little. That smile was SO cute, I wanted to jump into the TV and give him a hug. I hate that the Man in Black used Locke's body for evil. And boy did he look evil at some points. The actor who played Locke really rules. However in the end, there he was, the old Locke we all know and love, back and happy! Love love love.

I think that about does it. I'm sure there is more I have to say, but this is outrageously long as it is, so I'll spare you. Final thoughts on the finale: could have been more action (less shakey camera Island exploding), more answers and about an hour longer, but I guess I'm ok with how it turned out. Nicole was right again, the whole show has been about the characters more than anything. More than the Dharma stuff, more than the magic Island or who was good and who was bad. It was about a group of people who were all broken, but through their relationships with each other found peace and were made whole again. The finale does accomplish this. So I guess what I'm trying to say is that I was wrong. It was good. It was Lost at its most confusing, which means it's best.

Farewell Lost! I miss you already, more than I can possibly say. People will be talking about you for years to come, and one day I'll write a dissertation all about your myth and legend, not to mention what you did for TV in general. You changed the world! Thanks for the good times.


Ps. I still wish Kate had died. Man she annoyed me. Oh well. We can't have everything we want.


foobella said...

You really bite your tongue to keep from crying? Seems like that would make you cry even more! ;)

Veritas said...

Do you not remember that Christian says "They all died, some before you and some well after"? - basically everyone died eventually, so Kate and those that got away on the plane carried on their lives, until they died and met up with the other characters in the church, which was, yes, a kind of waiting room for Heaven.

I hated the ending, but I suppose it was the easiest way to end it.