In my last entry I talked about all the things I loved about the LOST series finale, and there were plenty. As promised this entry is donated to all the things I hated about the finale. As I have stated before, I think the finale gets better every time you watch it so I’m not going to be as harsh as I would have been if I had written this entry immediately following the episode. That being said, I still have some harsh words for the writers…
The writers never clearly and fully answered what happens if Smokey got off the island. This is an *unforgivable* mistake! How am I supposed to be properly invested in hoping our Losties defeat Smokey if I don’t know what the consequences of them failing are?? A high schooler could have done a better job. The writers should really be embarrassed that they failed writing 101 and did not properly explain the stakes. Furthermore, the writers never made it clear on what allows Smokey to leave the island. Would killing all the candidates and protectors do it? Was unplugging the island’s source a loop hole around that rule? Would either work? And most importantly, what happens to the rest of the world if the island sinks to the bottom of the ocean? Again, epic fail that the writers did not explain this fundamental question that the entire series was based on. Congratulations writers you are not smarter than a 5th grader.
The next huge problem with the finale was the Alternate Timeline (Alt-X). While I previously blogged that I loved the fact that the alternate timeline turning out to be a purgatory for the Losties because it answered all my Alt-X questions, it really was a *huge* waste of our time. Half of Season 6 was Alt-X and it turns out it didn’t matter at all. Let’s be honest, the reason the writers created Alt-X was to keep us in suspense over whether or not the nuke was the incident all along or if it would create a new timeline. Shortly after season 6 premiered I saw an interview with the writers and they were basking in their cleverness because they said that fans kept predicting EITHER the nuke was the incident OR the timeline would change, but no fan predicted BOTH would occur. Well it turns out that those of us who predicted that the nuke was the incident all along were right all along and you writers just made up Alt-X to confuse us. Making up a fake world to throw us off isn’t clever, again, it’s writing I’d expect from a grade schooler.
And speaking of wasting our time, how about season 6?? I love how the writers complained they didn’t have enough “space” to answer all of our questions but they had enough space to waste our time with a fake reality and with all that nonsense at the temple. What the hell was that all about?? Why did they have to go to the temple? If Smokey wasn’t able to kill candidates then they weren’t in danger and could they could have hung out anywhere. I suppose you could argue that Jacob could foresee everything and knew that reviving Sayid would allow him to save the Losties in the sub. But then why did we have to go through the redhairing of that stupid test they put him through followed by zombie Sayid? Clearly none of the zombie/test stuff mattered since he sacrificed himself to save everyone. Did the writers really have no story left that they had to waste two-thirds of a season? Wouldn’t it have been better to answer questions such as why did women all of the sudden die if they got pregnant?
And speaking of that sub scene, I think the existence of Alt-X took a lot away from the deaths of Sayid, Jin & Sun. That scene should have rivaled the “Not Penny’s Boat” death scene but it lost a lot of power because we were still holding out hope that Alt-X would become reality and our favorite characters would survive. Once again, writing 101, if you want to create a powerful death scene you don’t allow your audience to wonder if the death will “stick”. Alt-X served little-no purpose and only made us question things that need not be questioned.
Finally, I need to vent a little more about the writers. On the series as a whole, they did a fantastic job of creating some of my favorite television characters of all time, but at the same time they did a horrible job at creating a mythology. They just seem like dicks that went out of their way to not explain anything and hold out as long as possible to answer something so you’d be in awe at how clever they were. Other than the moment we realized we were watching a flashforward and when we figured out the Smoke monster was impersonating a dead Locke, I don’t recall many “Bruce Willis is dead” moments in the series. Usually you had to piece things together by re-watching episodes or discussing ideas with your friends. The cynic in me really believes that the island was always going to be purgatory but they writers changed that one they discovered that was the fan’s number one theory, AND since they didn’t want to lose that cleaver idea, they added the purgatory concept into season 6. Very cynical huh? All in all, LOST was a great show but the writers attitude keeps it from being one of the best of all time.