Lost Season 6: They Went Out Like Suckers in Many Respects
By Brian Doherty. Senior Editor, Reason magazine, author of the books THIS IS BURNING MAN, RADICALS FOR CAPITALISM, and GUN CONTROL ON TRIAL, Founder and president of Cherry Smash Records (1993-2001, approx, but closets still full of singles and CDs)
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Invested in five-seasons of LOST-via-DVD, and wondering if you should bother with season 6, having heard all sorts of mysterious whispers hinting that when you get near that finale—run the other way!
What follows is for someone willing to have their viewing experience of Lost ruined by knowing “what happened” to the extent that much of anything happened—or really happened?? [[cue Giacchino scene change sound burst]]. It’s also for those willing to have their viewing experience of Lost ruined by actually watching season 6.
You’ve doubtless heard many times since Sunday night’s hydrogen bomb of a finale that Lost had two types of fans—those in it for the characters, and those in it for the plot and mystery. As that backgammon game back in season one set us up to think, the show is all about dualities of good v. evil. (That its central metaprotagonists, Jacob and Smokey, had little other than their ends distinguishing their manipulative and murdering ways, and since those ends remained obfuscated until the end of the next to last episode, made things a little confusing, yes.)
But the distinction we’re working with here is between those who wanted the show to give us enough unambiguous information to understand its plot, themes, and intent, and those willing to let people with larger stores of cultural reference, more time to think about Lost, than we do explain to us how it all did make sense, or might have made sense, or could be seen as making sense if we squint a lot, read some more books, and are as charitable and forgiving to Lost’s writers as alt-Locke was to alt-Ben.
This is the summation for those of us who wanted from season 6 resolution, wrap-up, or explanation of what we were delighted and fascinated by watching season 1-5 DVDs. But just like all our beloved characters on Lost, in the end we had to be content not with achieving our goals, but just…letting go.