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Lost

Lost series finale review: ‘The End’

Warning: Major spoilers follow for various swaths of “Lost” in general, and the series finale in particular. I urge you NOT to read this review if you have (1) not watched “Lost,” (2) remained spoiler-free on “Lost” and (3) ever intend to watch it (which I highly recommend).

Lost: The End
Jack gets beaten and battered in the final episode of Lost.

As I’ve said before, the true genius of Lost was that it could be so many things to so many people. Because of its vast array of diverse characters and settings (in its various flashbacks, flash-forwards, and this season’s “flash-sideways”), it could do so many things as a narrative universe — episodic, serialized, weaving in and out and connecting characters in Short Cuts-like ways.

And because all of these characters were stranded together on a mysterious island with bizarre electromagnetic properties, a mysterious smoke monster, and apparently no hope of rescue, there were so many stories to be told, and plenty of conflicts to be had along the way. Also, lots of teamwork and camaraderie. It was a community of necessity. Sometimes dysfunctional. Sometimes working well together. Often pitted against outside forces (like the button, or the Others, or a band of Widmore’s mercenaries). And sometimes pitted against one another. (Read more…)

Lost review: ‘What They Died For’

Spoilers follow for Lost’s “What They Died For.”

Ben Linus
Benjamin Linus: liar, manipulator, killer … and one of the possible heroes of the island? We will see.

We are in the final leg of the final chapter, folks. “What They Died For” nicely sets up the series finale of Lost in pure Lostian fashion. Which is to say: It answers a number of questions, but maintains a level of mystery and suspense by not giving away the game and setting up one last mystery. It unleashes a final cut-to-black revelation that will have you pondering its exact meaning. Smokey wants to destroy the island, and use Desmond to do it? Whoa. How? Why?

But until the finale (tomorrow, as I hastily prepare this surface-scratching review), we have a few conclusions supplied here. (Read more…)

Lost review: ‘Across the Sea’

Note: Spoilers ahead for Lost’s “Across the Sea.”

Jacob
Jacob: The good to the Man in Black’s evil? Or is it more complicated than that?

One of the greatest things about Lost — and what allowed it to be so many things to so many people — was that the vastness of its cast and the structure of its flashbacks meant it could operate on so many different levels and genres from episode to episode.

It could be a sci-fi show, a period piece, a story about different characters from specific parts of the world, a time-travel adventure, or an exercise in Short Cuts-like narrative collisions. The longer the show went on, the more crevices of the series the show could explore. When it was through exploring them, it simply created new crevices and devices, like the flash-forward or the flash-sideways. (Read more…)

Lost review: ‘The Candidate’

Spoilers for Tuesday’s eventful episode of Lost are contained in this post after the fifth paragraph. Do not read beyond the fifth paragraph (not counting this one) if you do not want to be spoiled on major events of Lost. You have been warned.

Lost: The CandidateThere’s an old saying: Never trust a man who smiles while holding eight bricks of C4. (ABC)

I had hoped last week to write a non-spoiler missive on my adoration for Lost, a series I came to late (having watched all the DVDs last year, and only now watching the show unfold week to week) after having studiously avoided spoilers for five seasons. But that missive hasn’t happened yet, and I’ve been involved in a yard landscaping project that has pretty much monopolized my time for the past week.

If you, like me, somehow remained spoiler-free on Lost all these years and are not currently watching, I highly recommend you stay that way, avoid all news items about Lost, then get all the DVDs (or preferably Blu-ray discs, if you have the money to spare; the series looks fantastic on Blu-ray, but still very good on DVD), start at the beginning, and watch the entire series. It’s a big time commitment with a massive number of episodes, and it requires patience at times, but it’s well worth it if you like well-made, character-driven, serial television. (Read more…)