Monday, May 24, 2010


It took a solid 12 hours for my LOST-induced state of zen to wear off. The euphoria of the grand finale episode remained strong as I lay in bed watching the Jimmy Kimmel post-LOST wrap up; through a good, but short night's sleep; as I fought morning rush-hour traffic on 494 through Bloomington; it even stayed intact through the weekly round of morning meetings once I got to work. Clearly this was a powerful television experience.

SPOILER ALERT! If you keep reading, make sure you've seen the finale.

The episode more than delivered on the questions I needed answered. Mainly, what was really going on in both the island and sideways worlds - what was real and what wasn't and if something wasn't real, than what was the purpose of that fictional realm? Turns out (I think) the island was a real place where the survivors really did survive. But these are just details to add substance to the story. What was the show really about?

There are a LOT of people who want to say it was all about religion. LOST certainly had heavy religious themes. After all, the series closed with everyone presumably transitioning into some sort of heaven-esque after life. That said, while religion had a major role to play in the storytelling of LOST, saying the show was all about the truth or existence of religion or faith is still too simple. Much like the island and ancient philosophy, religion was another detail used to tell the story.

LOST was driven by the stories of the show's characters and every one of those characters was flawed. Kate was a murderer, Sawyer a con man. Locke and Jack had daddy issues like no other, as did Hurley who also believed he was cursed. Then there was Benjamin Linus, who many have called the greatest TV villain of all time. Every one of them found redemption. Even Ben - who we all finally learned to trust thanks to his poignant apology to Locke before Locke entered the church - turned out to be a good man and Hurley's island-guardian sidekick for who knows how many hundreds of years.

The main message and on-going theme of LOST was that through all the potential to be evil, there is good at the core of all human beings. For all the bad deeds done by the cast of characters, there was redemption available by doing something good of equal or greater magnitude.

That's a message that makes ya feel good - and it's why much like myself, so many millions of Americans went to bed with a inexplicable feeling of zen following the conclusion of what might be the greatest TV show of a generation.

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