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The Day After: Already, I'm Lost without "Lost"
May 14, 2009  | By David Bianculli
lost-statue.jpgI had the same reaction last year. The second ABC's Lostended, with a jaw-dropping cliffhanger, I did the math, perused the TV horizon, and sighed a sigh of mournful resignation.

Already, I'm lost without Lost.

Face it. By the time this week is over, and certainly after Fox's 24 and American Idol end their annual marathons next week, broadcast TV will begin to smell. The summer will reek of, and from, tacky reality and competition shows. Wednesdays on ABC, instead of Lost, we'll have Wipeout.

Check, please.

And at this point on the calendar, the next fresh episode of Lost is some eight months away. No wonder viewers flee to cable during the summer. It's not only the pursuit of quality. It's self-defense.

But Lost, last night, ended not with a whimper -- but with a very big bang...


I won't go into much detail here, but there are certain things about the season finale that exemplified precisely why I love this show.


It fleshed out some mysteries -- literally, in at least two cases, by introducing us to the complete oceanside statue (previously seen only in ankle-high ruins), and to Jacob, the elusive island master. It also introduced a new adversary, still unidentified, who succeeded in finding a "loophole" aimed at killing Jacob. And what a loophole... the spitting image of Locke.

lost-title.jpgIt provided a long-overdue showdown between Sawyer and Jack, as Jack sought to complete Daniel's mission of detonating a nuclear bomb near the electromagnetic rift in order to prevent "the incident" that brought them all to the island. It also, in a delicious moment of doubt-seeding, had Miles ask a frightening but eminently logical hypothetical: What if Jack's detonation of the bomb WERE the incident?

It lost-09-sf-juliet-w-bomb.jpgbuilt everything up to the climax of the bomb being dropped, then deviously delivered an anti-climax instead. Nothing exploded. Nothing happened. Not until the last minute of the season finale, when we learned that Juliet, who had fallen into the collapsing drill site containing the unexploded bomb, had just enough life left in her to bang the device with a rock and detonate it. The screen filled instantly with white, and the episode, and the season, ended.


It was the Lost version of The Sopranos' cut to black, only this was a cut to white -- the show's White Album, a blank canvas on which next year's final episodes will be painted.


The teaser promo said it all, without saying anything but the barest facts. The show's title. When it will return. The finality, and theme, of its return.


And finally, at the end, one teasing image: the extreme close-up of an eyeball. Presumably, but not necessarily, the eye belongs to Jack.

That's the image with which Lost began five years ago -- a closeup of Jack's eye, widening to show his face, then his body, as he awakened in the jungle, completely disoriented, before stumbling to the beach and seeing the plane wreckage.

At the start of the finale, Jacob and his unnamed nemesis were debating about the nature of the island, and the evil that men do. The unidentified man complained that Jacob kept bringing people to the island, but that it always ended the same way: badly, with violence and death.

"It only ends once," Jacob says with zen-like calmness. "Anything that happens before that is just progress."

Lost, too, will end only once. I can't wait.

lost-eye.jpgAnd right now, the day after, I'm sad that I have to. Shows this good, this powerful and this original are rare -- and the broadcast networks aren't exactly doing well at replacing them as they leave.





Rich said:

Hmmmm, This is a rare show. I remember being totally 'Lost' and disinterested half way thru season 3 and only came back for season 3's finale - "We have to go back Kate" (The Flash forward) and was really angry and stunned how much time I had wasted on the show. Then just to see "How bad it was going to be" and because of the Writers strike I tuned into the Season 4 Opener last Winter and FINALLY explained the Island had an electro-magnetic history (or pedigree) like say "The Philadelphia Experiment"- and I was able to see the direction and tightening of storyline - then I was able to enjoy it completely as "One large story" told out of sequence.

And everyone that's been killed off, I really dont miss. Shannon, Boone, Charlie, Liz, Michelle Rodriquez's character- I'm glad they're gone. I liked Mr. Ecko but like in the story I think he ran his course and it's amazing how the creators can tell when a character has reached it's 'freshness dating'. I might miss Faraday - but maybe he's not gone?

I wouldn't worry about "Lost" - it's so good because of the long breaks. Besides You've got "True Blood" in June. "The Prisoner" on AMC soon right? "Mad Men" (AMC)has already begun filming and will arrive by August. Besides Summer is Movie-Time every week there's a new Blockbuster.


My guess for "Lost" final season. I think Jacob is probably Atlantian or a Egyptian 'god' or perhaps Alien? yeah, far fetched I know. I only say this cause the statue in it's full form has to be Egyptian and appears to be either Anubis (Jackle), Sobec, Thoth or possibly Osirus. He's holding the symbol for life (which I think is an Egyptian cross)- perhaps Jacob's nemesis now "Seth" in the form of John Locke? Anubis the god of the Underworld and maybe that's why the 'smoke monster' told Ben to whatever John asked because the 'Smoke Monster' & Evil Locke are one & the same? or shame a common enemy? Perhaps the "smoke monster" wants to leave the Island and must kill Jacob to ascend? All rambling theories I know. But ever since the Hatch of Season 2 egyptian symbols have played a role.

I will miss Kate ("Freckles") when it's all over. Why hasn't she gone into movies yet? I'd love to see an amazing battle at the end of "Lost" akin the final "Harry Potter" book- something epic. Unlike the ending of "Buffy" and more like "Angel" and for love of all of Kate's freckles, No Damn Snow Globes!!! I'd Love to see the finale of "Lost" rival the finale of "M*A*S*H" itself....yeah, I said it! It's time and I think "Lost" could be epic enough if they pace it right.

I think it'd be mind-bending if the bomb goes off and flight 815 lands in Los Angeles only Islands energy & disturbances start ripping into alternate 'Universes' and characters shift in age, appearance, skills, and personality- lol. One second Hugo's thin then next he's not next her's 15 next he's 55...get into some "Altered States" territory- lol. Matthew Fox said on Kimmel last night said he knows 'images' of the EndGame so we at least know it has a "Plotted End".

(Wow -- I think you wrote a longer column than I did. Thanks. -- David B.)


Comment posted on May 14, 2009 11:40 AM

Toby O'B said:

The main reason I can wait for the show to come back - because once Season 6 begins next year, the march is on to the finale and then what are we going to do?

It was a great season finale, with questions answered, a few new ones raised, and I'm assured that Cuse and Lindelof will deliver a fantastic final round in 2010.

Comment posted on May 14, 2009 1:14 PM

Phillip R. Crabb said:

It's a great show when two hours hardly seems enough, even with the annoyingly persistent commercials. Like the old vaudville characters said, "Leave 'em wanting more.."

Ok Dave, my annual shot at what's "going on.."


So, here comes the final season.

"New Locke" might be the Dark Guy in the opening scenes with Jacob, who has found the 'loophole' to kill Jacob, for whatever reason..through the body or soul of "Dead Lock" and Ben.

Illana and Richard Alpert appeared to be on Jacob's side.

Illana's colleague has said at least twice now that they're "the good guys". Jacob visited her in the hospital and begged her for help.

Richard says in Latin "the one who will save us all" lies beneath the shadow of the statue, Illana expressed joyous relief/hope.

I'm sure he meant Jacob.

Now, we've already seen how Jacob was there when Kate was a young girl, and with Sawyer just after his parents died.

He was there in the hospital with Jack, and attended Jin and Sun's wedding.

Jacob was responsible for finally getting Hurley on flight 316. Why?

Because he knew they would all be essential for helping him at some point defeat his Enemy (I'm assuming the 'Dark Guy'), perhaps restore the balance of Good and Evil, or show that humanity is worth saving, who knows...can't wait to find out..

Interestingly, the only flashback to not include Jacob was Juliet...and that 'flashback' as a little child sure looked like it was in present-day confines as well....The meaning? Don't know, my brain hurts too much at this point..

But at least one final piece IS missing.

Aaron - the little baby Kate took care of for so long...something, don't know what, is up there..

So, at the end of the day...can't wait till next year...I really, really need to see an advance of the script....I won't tell, honest....

Franklin, NJ

Comment posted on May 14, 2009 1:38 PM

Sarah said:

Thank you so much for writing about the season finale of Lost, No one I know has seen it yet and I need to talk about it. I agree with everything written.

1st- Yes finally finding out who Jacob is was great and that he has had contact with most of our losties was the icing on the cake. And then Locke not being Locke WHERE DID THAT COME FORM!?

2ed- The fight between Jack and Sawyer was truely satisfying and had to happen as much as any answer to all questions from past seasons.

3erd-I have to admit I cried when Sawyer was holding on to Juliet and him not wanting to let her go really brought out my girlie side, but at least her death had that final goal.

4th-and if that made me cry I was happiest when Vincent, Rose and Bernard appeared as if from nowhere and had built a nice little retirement home for them.

Finally the way Jack, Kate, Sawyer and Juliet looked at each other as they dropped the bomb as if to say it was nice knowing you was priceless

As for the ending -- well, let's just say to me it ended in a way that lets TPTB do wharever the heck they want in the Finale Season.

Speaking of the end I have to admit I screamed "NOOOOOO!" as they showed those final images and even now I can't get them out of my head. Waiting for the new TV season as summer goes by has sucked since I was a kid but now as much as I don't want this awesome series to end I am looking forward to 2010.

Until then as you said cable will be there.

Comment posted on May 14, 2009 3:19 PM

Greg said:

I think it would be better if they just dragged it out forever and never gave any final answers. As much as I desperately want to know, I think when all said and done it will be one of those moments of "how stupid was that!" Kinda like the anticipation of a surprize (like a xmas gift) is so much better than the revelation of that surprize. The real excitement of Lost is always in the not knowing and the way I demonically laugh (in a very WTF, that was awesome way) when they go to commercial. But I fear that when all the answers come, I will just be pissed that they relied on this or that bit of stupidity about space-time, life and death and ancient myths.

Possible spoiler but:

My guess is the island is Atlantis or "some other land of ancient mythological beings or gods possibly of koptic origin" and this is all an ancient battle of wits between two lesser known gods of some known mythology and all the people are just pawns in their eternal game with The Others having come there first on an old 17th century ship (the Black Rock wreck) and we know where everyone else arrived from (more or less). Or this could be the eternal afterlife of an Egyptian mummy or something (based on some of the symbolism that is 100% from that civilization).

Of course, anyone who watched the season finale probably thinks about the same so maybe it was all a red herring. Still, very enjoyable but, like I said, the not knowing is the real fun part and the knowing will, to me at least, be quite the let down. Like Q on Star Trek TNG, it was the mystery of him that made him such a great character.

Comment posted on May 17, 2009 3:04 AM

Juls said:

The eye shown... Doesn't seem like Jack's, but Kate's........

Comment posted on July 26, 2009 11:12 PM
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