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Season Finale Was So Good, I'm Lost without "Lost"
May 30, 2008  | By David Bianculli
 

All I can say is, "Wow." The fourth-season finale of ABC's Lost not only was every bit as dramatic, revealing and surprising as I'd hoped -- it was the year's Exhibit A for Reasons Not to Give Up on Network Television.

I only hope network executives across the board were watching, and learning their lesson...

This is the lesson: In 10, 20 years, people may remember American Idol, but no one's going to revere it, or even watch it. There was a time when The $64,000 Question was the hottest live competition show on television, but how treasured is that show today? A generation from now, the best of today's reality and competition shows will be either forgotten or remade, just as, say, yesterday's Queen for a Day is today.

But a show such as Lost -- it'll be a classic. Maybe not a classic in the Honeymooners or I Love Lucy or Twilight Zone sense, but certainly in the tradition of Twin Peaks or The X-Files. Attention must be paid. Those who love the show will not forget it, and such imaginatively scripted, superbly acted and directed series as Lost will save network television, if anything can.

Last night's season finale actually answered more old questions than it posed new ones -- definitely a first for a seasonal cliffhanger. And in the middle of all the angst and explosions and shifts of time and space, there was one fabulously satisfying moment, the reunion of Penny and Desmond, that paid off a story line that has been years in the making.

lost-season-finale-may-29-t.jpg

The episode also explained everything we needed to know about the Oceanic 6's origin and discovery, and set up not only why Ben had been wearing a parka in the desert, but how he steered the island somewhere else. Or somewhen else. I'm not sure -- just as I'm not sure whether Jin really died, as it appears.

Locke died, that's for sure -- that was the stunner to keep us buzzing until season five. And it seems just as certain that Jack will return to the island, with the body of Locke and the rest of the Oceanic 6 in tow... but then what?

We'll have to wait until 2009, when Lost returns, to find out. But having a show that's worth waiting to see, and worth talking about in the meantime, is way too much of a rarity not to treasure. Even if the next episode is eight months away.

 

5 Comments

 

Malcolm J said:

Well.... 5 1/2 hours have passed since I and The Wife Sat In Awe At John Locke's Waxen Stillness...Yes...They Have To Go Back.... I want Them To... Heck... Im Gonna Close My Eyes...Click My Heels Three Times...And Wish Like Crazy, That I Wake Up LOST! Crazy Thought...I Know.... But..This Show Has Me Thinking Like A Kid, Whose Favorite Characters Are Real. Silly Me.... I gotta Go To Work.

Comment posted on May 30, 2008 4:44 AM


Brooks said:

Here's the question I've got...

Does Desmond have to go back too?

Also, I was sure that the dude in the casket was Desmond. The wife guess it was Locke and I told her that she was nuts. Heh. Looks like I was wrong.

Comment posted on May 30, 2008 9:45 AM


Phillip R. Crabb said:

So, now we know that time-warping is at the crux of this adventure...my thoughts as follows:

Nobody died on the island when it went into 'white out', as Locke showed up in the casket later on (in a funeral home whose name was an anagram for 'Flash Forward').

When the Island 'disappeared', it simply closed the earthbound worm-hole or whatever that took you to 'wherever/whenever' the island was actually located.

All the people, including Locke, have to return since they've probably caused some sort of space/time rift that needs to be resolved asap or else the universe as we know it will end. Kind of like Ghostbuster crossing the rays.

When they do return, I doubt Locke stays dead very long, as the Island has had a 'curing' effect all along, especially with Locke. Maybe they find out they have to stay on the island for the Universe to be stable...and since the Island seems to be a time-irrelevant place, perhaps it becomes their 'Heaven'..?

I think that Jacob and the black smoke monster are experiments gone awry, and people are caught 'between' space and time. Would explain the level of intelligence the black smoke seems to have..

I don't think we've seen the last of anybody yet, that's the storyline beauty of time-warping.

I know, opinions are like nagging wifes, everybody eventually gets one...

But it's a great show...look forward to it as much as Crusader Rabbit when I was five. (Fabulous take on the whole thing, Phillip -- and believe it or not, I HAVE Crusader Rabbit adventures on VHS. Jay Ward's first wave of genius! -- David B.)

Comment posted on May 30, 2008 4:08 PM


Toby OB said:

This is the type of article that exemplifies why I miss having you in the Daily News. Sure, I can read it here on line, but that's not accessible for everybody as a paper is. And it would have been a great morning-after recap while riding the subway.

Great article and an excellent assessment of its future status! (Thanks for the kind words -- and yeah, websites are tough to read on the subway... especially the uptown 1 local -- David B.)

Comment posted on May 30, 2008 5:34 PM


Avi said:

First off, that was a satisfying review after a super-satisfying season finale. The first thing I did after the finale was to check the threadless board on the fuselage forums and second to check your blog for your review. Thank you.

That said, I knew ahead of time of the secret code for the finale, "The Frozen Donkey Wheel". Thinking it was pure nonsense was apparently me yet again underestimating the writers. You would've thought I'd learn to trust them by now. Never would I have thought such an absurd moment such as "The Frozen Donkey Wheel" would be such a satisfying television moment. That Ben would have to actually physically work so hard to move the island, must have been both a vindication and a slap in the face. It was stunning and simple and complex without depending heavily on campy CGI.

It had it all, and yes I agree, Lost is a classically great example of network television. What I find so different about such a monumental project such as Lost, is that it actually came and comes together beautifully and will see a proper ending. I'm amazed everyday that it hasn't been scrapped for yet another reality show. Thanks for not focusing on the slowly shrinking audience.

~Avi out

Comment posted on May 30, 2008 9:11 PM

 
 
 
 
 
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