Sunday, May 30, 2010

My heart is happy; my mind is not.

*I am intercepting Swan’s turn since I have had this thing written for a week and she has been left speechless, which I don't know if that means she loved it or hated it. I wrote the majority of this a few hours after the finale ended. A week later, I am feeling slightly better about it all, though I find myself talking about it to people who have moved on with their lives already. Some closing notes will follow. This is a long-ass blog post, by the way. Grab a drink and get comfortable.*

“This would be real touching if we weren’t all about to die.”

I am going to start and end on a good note; this is my promise to you. However, everything in between is going to be my honest opinion about the Lost finale—the negative and the positive.

This show is one of those special, few shows that will stand the test of time. It has brought people together, and there are only a handful of shows that can truly claim to have done that. It has one of, if not the, best casts a show could have, and there is only one other show in my lifetime I have been as dedicated to as I am Lost. I am grateful for its constant exercising of my grey matter, but not so much the constant tension in my shoulders and elevated blood pressure. I am so happy to have gotten the opportunity (thank you, Hyrdra) to write this blog, and in this journey getting to “meet” Swan as well as help develop this community. I am going to miss our discussions.

So, now here is the part where some of you will probably get defensive and pissed off at me, since I will now be telling you exactly how I felt about “The End”. It is my opinion. It is how I was left feeling when all was said and done. Some of it is happy; some of it is bitter. Despite the latter, I want you to know that I will always love this show and I will remain for quite some time sad that it came to an end.

I thought it was an amazing episode, in and of itself. It was poignant and character-driven—which is both its strength and weakness in my eyes. The fulfillment each character got to have in the end was wonderful to witness. It took me a while to process everything that happened, and once I did I thought it was pretty incredible. The Island is what actually happened to them; what was always meant to happen to them; involving everyone who was always meant to impact their lives to the utmost degree—especially their one special connection, or “soulmate”. The Flash-Sideways was how their lives would have been without the island; created for the purpose to show them that their destinies were always the island and to help find the closure they needed to move on to The Light. My theory on the characters not seen in the church: Miles, Lapidus, Daniel and Charlotte were part of a different gathering, since they were thrown together to be on that island. When they are ready, they will come together like everyone else did with each other. Ben couldn’t go on with everyone without Alex, and I also think he needed to forgive himself before moving on. I am kind of worried about Rousseau and Alex when they find out everything that Ben did on the island. They won’t be very cool about it, methinks. Richard’s life was always his wife, so I believe he became part of something else entirely; the same for Jacob and his brother—whom I believe he always loved. And then, you know, souls like Michael’s (whatever that means) get to whisper on the Island for eternity. Ouch.

I definitely teared up when Vincent lay down beside Jack so that Jack wouldn’t die alone. I love Vincent. I love dogs. I thought it was perfect that Hurley became the true protector and that Ben became his right-hand man. I guess he got to have dead people as company on the island as well. I wonder if he and Jack had some conversations during is reign? I know Desmond got to go home and live his life out with Penny and Charlie. I thought the reunions were incredible (Sayid and Shannon aside, ugh), especially Juliet and Sawyer’s and Claire and Charlie's. As much as I love Penny and Desmond, I think Juliet and James win out as favorite couple for me; they are too perfect. I was surprisingly very happy about Kate and Jack. The way he said "I love you" melted my heart. I thought it was kind of funny that when Juliet said "It worked" from the grave, it was actually her talking about the vending machine. There were so many touching, funny, and magical moments throughout. I got chills during most of it, and it was all so peaceful and joyous to experience.

As a season finale, it was great. As a finale for the characters, it was perfect. However (uh-oh), as a SERIES finale, as what was meant to tie the PLOT of the show together, I feel cheated. I feel like I am expected to be okay with it just because it gave me the warm and fuzzies at the end, and because I have been so so so so dedicated. It WAS a fantastic ending, but there are six seasons of things that we still don’t have any closure on.

I care about the characters immensely. How this show ended for them meant a lot to me, and they got a beautiful ending, which makes me so happy and satisfied for them. However, I also care about the mystery and science fiction elements that they presented to us throughout the entire series and as a loyal viewer I wanted closure on a few more of these aspects. I didn’t get that closure. I think being one of those people who constantly theorized kind of set me up for disappointment, though. I am left torn: I feel like the writers gave us an outstanding character-driven drama, but a horrendous mystery. Damon Lindelof said, "Lost is, at its heart and soul, a character study.” I can fully agree with that. Yet, you cannot introduce such complex plot devices only to abandon them for the characters. I have said since the beginning of this blog that I was never expecting to have all my questions answered, but I am also sick of hearing, “Well, it was all just left open for interpretation. Use your brain and figure it all out for yourself! You clearly just aren’t smart enough to get it.”

As a writer myself, I don't think an ENTIRE series should be open for interpretation. It’s kind of just an artistic way of being lazy. I think it's a cop-out, and kind of manipulative, to expect us as viewers to be okay with that. Before everyone starts assuming I don’t get the bigger meaning of the show, and how it was more about the journey for the characters and the overall theme of letting go and moving on…I get it. I got it. I am more than okay with that aspect of it. But you cannot just introduce 850 things in a span of six years and only address ten of them, and then expect hugs, smiles and a white light to gloss over the fact that we still don’t have any idea what is going on with that island. That island was where 90% of EVERYTHING happened. I am not going to sweep it under the rug because everybody found each other in the afterlife. I actually don't feel like they answered all that much. I feel like they gave us the idea that they did, but really all they did was explain what happened in the last season or two, not the last six.

It was an amazing episode. I can't stress that enough. From the character standpoint, I give it an A+. But from a plot/storytelling standpoint, I am giving it a D. Last night I would have given it an F, but I am feeling a little better about it now. Eventually I (hope I) will appreciate it 100% for what it was, but I just need more time. It wasn’t perfect, but despite everything I just said, and being really really mad about an hour after it ended, I think it was as good of an ending as we were going to get. It was not the best finale of all time, but it was far from the worst, and there is a great success in that.

I still absolutely love this show. The journey with these characters has been outstanding. I am so happy for the characters, and I suppose I kind of need to be less selfish about the ending and focus on what they got and not what I got out of the show. At the same time, I feel like I have the right and reasons for being upset, but I am also fine with being in that group of people who were not completely satisfied, knowing that there are plenty of people who loved it for exactly what it was; it means the writers succeeded. It was definitely memorable and it has been a pleasure being a part of this.

*Closing Notes: I didn’t want to ruin my actual blog entry at the beginning with these final notes. I want to add that I have read several upon several blogs that were way more harsh than I was, which makes me feel less horrible about not being wholly satisfied with how this show ended. I seriously felt like the only person who was mad after it ended. Like I said, I am feeling better about it now. I kind of feel like the characters of the show serve as reflections of the viewers. Let me explain. There are those who will never move on from what happened, like Michael. There are those who, like me, who have a lot of figuring out to do, who are okay with parts of it, but won’t move on until they are ready, like Ben. And then there are those, optimistically a lot according to the last scene, which reflect those who felt complete peace with the ending. That is everyone on this blog but me, apparently. I still felt like the ending was really sweet, but in a cheesy and a bit cliché way.

I think I was too half and half to appreciate it. I cared about the characters as much as I cared about the story/plot, and got more of the former than the latter. I spoke to Arrow briefly about it—which I was absolutely shocked when I found out he loved it—and he surmised that the Men of Faith were happy with the ending, while the Men of Science were not. He’d taken the same journey as Jack, thus going from a Man of Science to Man of Faith. I agree with this, kind of. Except, in most cases I fall into the Man of Faith category, so it is kind of inaccurate to who I am. Then again, in most stories, I almost always prefer character-driven plots, so Lost is clearly a special case for me. I think I must have just taken a different journey. I was a (wo)Man of Faith who became a (wo)Man of Science. I got wrapped up in everything that was happening, instead of just letting it unfold as it should. I don’t feel any shame in this. When I was talking to my mom about it all (who also did not like it, and she is definitely a Woman of Faith first), she said that I have always dissected and analyzed things so as to better understand them, and that is why I didn’t feel completely satisfied with the ending. I am okay with this aspect of myself, even though it sometimes mean I over-analyze things way to often.

To sum it all up: My heart is happy, but my mind is not. *

Sorry for being the Bitch of the Blog, folks. Just know that I think you’re awesome.

The Pearl

Until the DVDs come out--on which I have been told there will be MORE answers--this comic has some answers I can live with for now.

You can find more of these at this twitter account.

Edit: Here is an old Blooper Reel!


  1. I like that everyone has a different opinion of the last episode. I think it shows how wide of an audience LOST actually had.

    I loved the finale, personally. I think most of the important questions I had in my head were answered. The only one I would of liked to know is why Hurley and Walt had these 'powers' as such.

    But for a show to keep everyone guessing right until the last 30 minutes of a finale, to me is incredibly impressive.

  2. Nice post, even though I obviously liked the finale way more than you did. I really thought the Island is a bit of a metaphor for life and that we had to have all these questions and loose ends at the end of the show because that's how life works. Well, I don't feel like re-explaining it, so here's my video:

  3. I agree with you.

    When I first finished watching it, I was like wtf? What just happened? And when the wreckage started playing, it made my already confused state of mind in turmoil. I began second-guessing my previous notions (which turned out to be right) and really thought for a brief period of time that everyone had literally died (meaning Ajira crashed).

    I hated it. I went through the next day bashing it with my one friend, and we argued with every main point.

    But then I looked back on it. I realized that it had what I really wanted all along - closure. I liked knowing where my favorite characters ended up, even if it wasn't how I expected or wanted them to. I liked knowing that this was THEIR story and how their decisions and actions and lives really did matter. It wasn't about getting questions answered, it was about not knowing. It was like Shannen said, a metaphor for life. That's when I realized how truly freaking genius Damon and Carlton are.

    I re-watched it twice, and I've liked it even more with every viewing. It's not what I expected or hoped for, but that's okay. It's what needed to be said, and I loved how they showed it. It doesn't matter why women can't have children on the island, or who the real Henry Gale was or why Desmond told Charlie he saw Claire and Aaron getting into a helicopter or what the hell is wrong with Eloise, or why Miles can hear dead people's last thoughts or Hurley can talk to dead people or... anything. It doesn't really matter. All it matters is the journey they went on and the experiences and bonds they had and formed.

  4. Yeah, each time I watch it, I love it more and more. I'll find my peace with it as a whole eventually. I am glad I am not the only one who has had to go a on a little journey with this finale. They really were geniuses with this story of these characters.

  5. Great post, Pearl. I really loved the finale and I'm fine with the answers we lack (except for 2 or 3 really specific ones), but I think you explained yourself really well and I totally understand why you feel the way you do. I love that you used the Michael/Ben/everyone else metaphor for how viewers are divided on the finale, because I think that totally fits!! Reading and commenting on this blog has been a blast, and it definitely enhanced my experience of the final season! Thanks so much to everyone who participated. :)

  6. Thank you, Madeline. I'm glad I was able to explain my feelings well enough.

    In all honesty, I don't have that many questions I would like answered. It's the ones I do have are HUGE questions. I don't care about Henry Gale or any tiny details likes that. I am trying to have faith that they will address some of the bigger questions on the DVD set, though.

  7. Maybe I'm just incredibly nitpicky, but I'm pretty upset. I feel like they only answered the questions they presented the last 2 seasons. What gets me is that the creators are harping on the fans about it. Something like "Don't get caught up in things that don't matter," as if it's my fault for wanting to know the answers to mysteries they specifically set up for us to want to know.
    Like the outrigger shootout? It was an ABANDONED plot line, but they'll never tell us what they were going to do with it? Sigh. I'm *really* upset.

  8. I was and still do get upset about it all, too, Titania. And I mean, really mad. In my facebook status that night I specifically said, "I feel like I am the only one pissed off about Lost right now." Like I said in my entry, I completely agree that they just focused giving a finale to the last two seasons, not the series as a whole. They abandoned a couple of big plot lines, and there are some big questions that I don't think should have been cast aside as unimportant. The writers are being very Jacob about it--assuring us that despite what happened, it was for the best and not to worry about it.

    However, the only choice we really have in all this is to find some kind of peace with it, you know? I STILL bitch about it to people, and plug in that I did like the character part of it so I don't get slapped. But, bitching is pretty much all we can do. We'll get over it. I am on the path, and just replay the parts that I DID love in my head. Just go read twitter Lost comics to feel better. :)

  9. I was totally with you. When it first ended I was angry about not knowing a lot of what I wanted to know, but with time I've mellowed. There are still aspects that I wish had been wrapped up because although I love the characters I was interested in the sci fi/island stuff as well. Not much we can do about it though (except wait and see what's on the DVDs :P)

  10. Ever wonder where the flaming arrows came from?!

  11. I do not think you are the bitch of the blog. Even though you weren't 100% happy with the ending it sounds like you were still able to take something from it and feel some sort of closure for the show even if it wasn't exactly what you were looking for. Personally I loved the finale but I have friends all over the spectrum. I even have one friend who feels like he wasted 6 years of his life because he didn't like how the show ended which I personally think is a bit over dramatic. What I've tried to take from all this is that you can never please everyone and I believe the creators were thinking the same way. There was no way they were going to answer all of our crazy questions in one episode and tie it up in some neat little bow and anyone who thinks that is missing a bigger picture. By the same token, I don't think the episode was supposed to make everyone happy. It's the viewers differences of opinion that have lead to such great conversations about the show from the beginning and will continue to spark these conversations for years to come.

  12. Okay guys. I've had this page opened on Firefox for weeks hoping for an update. I know you don't control each other, but can we say, nudge them in the right direction? Please? :)

  13. @Titania

    I agree. I've been checking daily for.... nothing. Please update guys?

  14. I sent Swan an email. Hopefully she will post hers soon. She is finished with college, so surely she has more time to write SOMETHING, right?