The End - My Take on the LOST Forever Finale

LOST ended on Sunday. Boo.

Then 24 ended on Monday. Double boo.

While I'm mostly sure that these big time TV people have better things to do than throw a huge wrench in my life, part of me thinks that they did this just to annoy me. 2 of my favorite shows - poof - gone.

Anyway, since I'm currently an emotional mess because of this new gaping hole in my life, I thought I'd blog about these finales to hopefully provide me with some sort of therapeutic something-or-other.

Let's start with LOST.

**Side note: I'm going to talk about this straight up, so if you don't want to know what happened for whatever reason...don't read this. (AKA spoiler alert!) Also, if you don't care, don't read this. Here - here's a link to my Facebook photo album full of adorable pictures of Madelyn: Facebook photo album full of adorable pictures of Madelyn. Do that instead. You're welcome. Side note over. **

Katie's Thoughts About the Forever Finale of LOST

I'm glad that Smokey aka the Man in Black aka John Locke's Possessor was actually bad. My brother-in-law hypothesized that they were going to switch that around on us and present him as "misunderstood." Meh. They kind of did that in the whole Jacob & Smokey focused episode, but not enough to redeem him. He was evil, and he needed to die.

BUT why exactly was he evil? This brings me to an important point that has to do with the entire finale. While I certainly was not expecting this episode to answer every question the series presented, I was at least expecting some more meaningful explanation of the important concepts this season has focused on. I can roll with the idea of "that's just how it is" about some things, but these are things that, to me, needed to be answered to give the series some real meaning.
  • The Light. What - exactly - is it? Apparently, it's something that exists inside everyone, keeps the island above water, turned the Man in Black into Smokey (but didn't turn Jack into anything), keeps Smokey from leaving the island, and keeps all the joy and happiness and love and people in the world alive. Is it a religious thing?
  • Smokey. Is he supposed to be, like, the Devil? If he is, wouldn't that make Jacob Jesus? That makes zero sense, since Jacob created Smokey, killed his brother, etc. And what exactly would happen if Smokey left? Would he kill everyone and everything in the world? That seems to be what the protectors of the Light think.
  • The Rules. Smokey couldn't kill Jacob...but anyone else could? Smokey couldn't kill candidates, but didn't kill anyone else once Jack had taken the job, hence eliminating the idea of "candidates." So...???
  • Protecting the Light. I'm pretty sure Jacob said that the Light needed to be protected from Smokey. So...once Smokey's dead...who is the Light being protected from? Anyone that might stumble upon it? Even though we're pretty sure you can't find the place where the Light is unless a Protector shows you where it is?
Anyway, my point is - as the story stands, there is a Light at the heart of the island that needs to be protected at all times, even though it can't be found. There is this one bad guy that really wants to find it, because if he turns it off, he can leave. Also, if he turns it off and leaves, it means terrible, terrible things for the entire world.

Seriously. It's just a little too much for me to just "accept." Something - some kind of explanation, or allegory, or something - was really needed. Knowing why it would have been soooo bad if the island was destroyed and Smokey had left would have gone a loooong way in justifying the entire series.

My other major beef with that finale is that little surprise twist at the ending. I think I was even more disappointed with this than with the unanswered questions thing. So, at the end, Jack's dad reveals that all these Flash Sideways things we have been seeing have actually been scenes of some kind of (unofficial) Purgatory - everyone's dead, no one really realizes it until they are touched by something that was especially meaningful to them during their life, and everyone needs to let go and move on.

First of all, the whole idea of the Flash Sideways was that it was supposed to be showing what would have happened if the plane had never crashed. This was supposed to have been caused by the detonation of the bomb at the end of the last season. So...if the bomb didn't create this alternate reality...what did it do? I guess it just transported the survivors from the 1970s (when the bomb went off) to the present. OK. Weird, but OK.

And then...we haven't been watching an alternate reality this whole season. We've been watching a place in between life and afterlife that the survivors created for themselves to let go of their issues and regroup after they die. But, honestly...who actually cares? We've only been watching this storyline for one season, and so the "big shocker" is just turning that one season upside-down. What is the point of showing us what the Losties do after they die - especially when there are so many other things that the time could have been spent on?

I do like that the ending placed a lot of focus on the characters. It sent the message: what really matters is that they met each other, learned from each other, helped each other, and loved each other. That's not a bad message to send. But I really think this message could have been conveyed in a way that was more supportive of the entire series. This seemed like more of a cop out the writers decided on when they realized they had created something so complex that even they couldn't understand it.

So yes, even though I do think that it was deep and meaningful in it's own way, I don't think it was a fitting ending for the series. Thumbs down.

Here are some other random thoughts I have concerning the finale:
  • I'm pretty sure I could have created better looking earthquakes than they did. Seriously. You could totally tell the camera was shaking, and not the ground. From a show that is usually visually stunning, this was totally weird.
  • SO glad Jack and Kate ended up together. I was pissed when Sawyer entered that equation. And he and Juliet were cute in their own way.
  • Baby Aaron basically jumped out of Claire. It's not like I wanted to watch her labor for hours or anything...I'm just saying. Also, with all the blood and gore that has been on this show before, you'd think they could put some red goop on the kid. Because trust me, there is red goop on kids when they are born.
  • Ben was bad, Ben was good, Ben was bad, Ben was good...seriously, wasn't it just last episode that he was totally on Smokey's side? Killing Whidmore and all? And then he becomes Hurley's number 2. I mean really - I know the guy was supposed to be a conundrum and all, but it got a little ridiculous.
  • Desmond is very cool.
  • The Target commercials during the show were funny.
  • I'm so glad Claire left with Kate. That made me happy. She gets to go be a mommy!
  • I'm glad that Jack wasn't actually left alive as the protector of the Island. As Smokey said, he was the predictable choice.
  • Loved that they ended with Jack's eye closing in the same place it opened in the pilot. Very Circle of Life-esque. I had predicted it would start with Jack's eye opening. Oh well. Can't win 'em all.
So anyway, there are my thoughts. I thought it was a disappointing ending to a really great show.

What did you think?