The Lost Blog

"Lost" made me a true believer years ago, so now I'm just enjoying the ride

Season three finale, Through the Looking Glass"Through the Looking Glass"

[I thought it might be fun to prep for season six with a little fanboy exuberance. What follows isn't all that insightful. Regular readers have heard variations on this before. But I think it captures my deep appreciation for this show. -- Mac]

Let me be clear: I will not cover any sort of "Lost" spinoff. I witnessed the sad, feeble final seasons of "The X-Files." Super soldiers? Doggett and Reyes? No need to revisit that brand of nonsense.

Thankfully, Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse appear to be of the same mind. From Variety:

The duo have made it pretty clear that they have no intention to keep the show going after the finale, and would like their work to stand on its own once "Lost" slams the hatch door shut. "People deserve an ending, and to promise a continuation of the story in any form in some way negates the finality in some way," Lindelof says.

That's precisely why these guys are pop culture heroes. They get it. With "Lost," they have a rare opportunity to craft a beautiful, cohesive series. Not just a good episode or a good season. But an entire series. It's a shot at an actual legacy, and they know it.

I'll admit there was a time when I thought "Lost" was teetering into crapdom. I can pinpoint the exact episode: season three, number nine. The godawful "Stranger in a Strange Land." An entire 44 minutes dedicated to the not-at-all burning question, how did Jack get his tattoos? Ugh. God. I still get queasy.

But then ABC -- God bless you, ABC -- agreed to an end date. Everything changed. Goodbye tattoos. Goodbye Nikki and Paulo. Hello (more) Juliet. And ... oh my ... helloooo "Through the Looking Glass."

I contend that the season three finale represents the single greatest television episode ever filmed. You're entitled to disagree, but don't waste time arguing with me. I won't be swayed. "Through the Looking Glass" is the pinnacle of serialization and mythology. It's proof that television can showcase truly brilliant work.

And story-wise, good lord, what a move! Ballsy as hell. Flipping an entire show on its head. A popular, profitable franchise, totally reborn! And the way they did it was just so clever. Swapping out a central question -- will they get off the island? -- with a bigger one -- how did they get off the island?

Who does that? Who has the audacity to even consider such a thing?

That's why, regardless of how season six plays out and how the series ultimately ends, I'm grateful for what we've experienced. Lindelof and Cuse already had my admiration. Their refusal to defame the "Lost" legacy with silly spinoffs just reinforces my faith in these guys.

Photo © ABC.


#1. Posted by: Meg at January 13, 2010 12:56 AM

Thanks Mac - totally agree with you, can't wait for season six. The only question is - what will we do once it's over?

#2. Posted by: Superenigmatix at January 13, 2010 4:32 AM

Of course D&C asko said 'Disney owns it and can do anything they want with it.' Guess we'll just have to trust the Mouse.

Of course S-3-9 might still turn out relevant it we learn that Jack is from the same alien race as Jacob and Esau/Nemesis/Number 2/MIB.

"He walks among us but is not one of us."

#3. Posted by: Cecil Rose at January 13, 2010 10:20 AM

I'm soooooo trying to be patient for Feb 2. Mac, I just went back and read your entire Looking Glass post, and the first 108 or so comments. Remember how much free time you had to watch and write B.C. - Before Children? Thanks for all the great work, and giving us a place to think out loud.

#4. Posted by: jaybee at January 13, 2010 8:46 PM

As always, Mac, you hit the nail on the head. Thanks for saying it so eloquently for us.

#5. Posted by: Rhonda Banford at January 14, 2010 11:39 AM

I didn't think the tattoo episode was THAT bad, but I do agree with you all the way. Only time will tell if the last season will satisfy our cravings for answers, thrills, entertainment, great acting, and mind bending plot twists. Regardless, lets relish it while the unknown anticipation still remains...

#6. Posted by: Richard Alpert at January 14, 2010 2:14 PM

Hear, hear! Mac sums things up perfectly again.

I love Lost, this wonderful episode recap and discussion group, and the producers' weekly audio podcast. Taken together, they've been the richest, most immersive television experience ever. If not for the internet, I don't think a show like this could have been pulled off.

Even if season 6 ends up disappointing, I'll walk away happy to have devoted countless hours to our castaways, especially the lovely, mercurial Kate.

Thanks to you all in the Lost community for what's been a fun time.

#7. Posted by: arkansasron at January 15, 2010 1:59 AM

@arkansasron -- You bring up an interesting point regarding the sum total of the Lost experience. And it *is* an experience. That's part of the genius.

One addition to that: I've been asked from time to time if I'll ever go back and review the two-hour pilot episode. Truth is, I can't. It wouldn't fit in. Each of the reviews represents a *moment* in the Lost experience. It's the accumulation of all we know and all that remains unanswered. If I tried to go back and write a review for an episode whose answers (some of them) have been addressed, it would feel out of place. That's yet another reason I believe TV is a vibrant medium for storytelling. It's a collective experience that has value both in the moment and, if a show is allowed to play out, in retrospect as a completed whole. Books offer something similar, but the shared component is far less.

Or maybe I'm trying to justify the countless hours I spend watching TV ;)

#8. Posted by: mac at January 15, 2010 8:43 AM

I'm a little disturbed at the defeatest blogging that's going on. "Even if Season 6 ends up disappointing..." You're killing me, here, Smalls! I refuse to think that this will end poorly. I guess I'm just going to be Locke-ian and be a person of faith, not a person of reality. Or maybe it's just too sad to think I've waited 6 seasons to be disappointed- whatever. :)

#9. Posted by: lardiea at January 18, 2010 1:16 PM

There’s an interesting site called “” that at this time has an interesting list of “unanswered questions”. The author has 10 “major” questions and the probability percent of whether they will be answered or not. And then he (or she) has a list of unanswered questions concerning every character we’ve seen in the past several years. I haven’t had a chance to go through it completely, but it seems like a fun place to dwell sometime during the next three weeks.


#10. Posted by: davidrh at January 19, 2010 7:53 AM