Monday, May 24, 2010

Review - Lost Season 6 Episode 17/18 The End

It's almost 2 in the morning, so my main excuse is that I can hardly think let alone write. For an expansion of my review, check back in 18 hours when I have time to think things over and get some sleep. For now, here's a gut reaction (and the series finale certainly deserves more than that).

I never had any illusions about the series finale. Due to the weight of 6 years of heavy mythology, a bunch of random twists and turns, there wouldn't be a real central tie to everything and many worthwhile aspects would never be fully explored. I pretty much resigned myself to not knowing answers or really understanding things in the end, and with that mindset, I was able to enjoy the series finale.

In a flurry of information in the last 10 minutes, we learn, through a dead Christian, that they are all dead, Jack and the rest of the flash-sideways people in the church. My first reaction was  a big "Huh?" Desmond gathers everyone, so they can move on from their purgatory. Basically, the flash-sideways had been their own construct, bridging time and space, where they remember the best part of their lives--when they were together--and allows them to enter Heaven. I'm still trying to wrap my head around this, and I don't think it's because I'm tired that it doesn't all fit together.

So the ending didn't make sense whatsoever and even in a rewatch of the season I doubt it will. My response is "Answers schmanswers!" The great thing about Lost is that even if the mythology doesn't quite fit together or make sense, there's far more. I watched the show, originally, more for the mystery and mythology, but as the series progressed the characters became just as central and that's really what separates Lost from the pack.

"The End" displayed the uncanny and truly amazing ability of the writers to combine a deep mythology with many compelling characters. And it's not just one or two characters, it's all of them. The episode is full of emotional, tear inducing character moments that made the episode work.

My philosophy about series finales is this: Series finales tend to disappoint and are only one episode out of the series. Therefore, the finale could be the shittiest episode ever and the series could still be excellent. In television, the journey is far more important than the destination and that holds true for Lost. In a week, a month, or a year, I'm not going to trouble myself over the finale just like I don't care about the Battlestar Galactica finale or the Sopranos finale. I'll always be impressed and mesmerized by Lost.

Does the the mythology hold together? No. Does it matter? No.

Anyway, those are some of my quick thoughts written in the dead of night. After writing a bit, my brain is warmed up and the ending still doesn't make sense to me. I guess we'll need Doc Jensen to clear things up.

Score: 8.9/10

  • I liked the open-ended ending with Hurley taking over and the plane just flying off while Jack lay there dying. There's something wonderful about the perpetual nature of the Island, constantly changing and moving on as the bond between the characters is so strong they must come together in purgatory. Really lovely stuff.
  • Rose and Bernard! They're awesome!
  • Sawyer and Juliet! They're awesome too.
  • Sayid and Shannon? It was so long ago I don't care anymore, and what about Nadya?
  • Boone? Come on... He's Hurley's little helper?
  • Michael? Nowhere to been seen. Haha.
  • I don't even want to go into the light/plug/Desmond business right now. Maybe later. Part of me sees the Smoke Monster, light, and all that stuff as superfluous.
  • Faraday and Charlotte? They were kind of shafted.
  • I'm rambling now. Time to get 3 hours of sleep...
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