Thursday, March 04, 2010

Boy, I'm Glad I Never Watched this Show

Lisa de Moraes - Creators of 'Lost' say they won't tie up all those loose ends - washingtonpost.com: "Many of the questions posed during the run of 'Lost' that have been keeping you up at night are never going to be answered on the show but will instead be tossed on the compost heap like an old turnip, because, the writers say, they have run out of time.

And if you're expecting they will nonetheless come through with some kind of post-finale TV special, online chat, tweet -- anything! -- to answer their rabid fans' lingering head-scratchers, you need to think again. They have no intention of discussing the show after the finale airs on May 23, . . ."

22 comments:

Mack said...

This reminds me of the way X-Files ended.

I was going to go back and watch Lost on DVD but not now.

D.K. Soames said...

Typical of "customer service" in every inch of our culture and economy. We crank it out, you buy it, and of you don't like it screw you. If you have any questions, screw you. Want to keep going once we get tired of it, screw..................

Seepy Benton said...

I feel lost!

Todd Mason said...

Hey, I could tell that they weren't going to bother with anything like a worked-out premise when I saw the original two-episode pilot...and that J. J. Abrams (he of the great piling on of bootless enigma in everything he's done, 'coz that's so hot it's kewl) was producing. Then I gave it one more shot, and got an episode which was largely about setting up a golf course, with time out for a noble ex-Iraqi Saddam Hussein goon-squadder to Fix a Solid-State walkie talkie with a paper clip. Yes, this was the Mastur... at work. If that's what we call the result of such efforts.

Max Allan Collins said...

How about a comment from somebody who has watched the show from the beginning?

It's had its ups and downs, but the show has created its own world and a lot of really strong characters and relationships. It's certainly created an indepth mythos. It's beautifully shot and often exciting and bewildering in good, challenging ways.

This particular season is in fact answering questions at a dizzying but entertaining pace -- the best season since the first one, hands down, and the fastest hour on TV.

This notion (read that TV critic's entire smug essay) that a work of fiction must explain its own every nook and cranny, and (b) that its creator(s) are expected to go about explaining the meaning of said work till the end of time, is so patently ridiculous and at odds with most worthwhile fiction (including genre fiction) that I found it damn near alarming that everybody is piling on...particularly without watching the thing.

Todd Mason said...

Max, I believe I mentioned I tried to watch the thing, only to have my intelligence, if not insulted, then at least not credited...and given the track record of such earlier projects of Abrams as FELICITY and ALIAS and his M:I film, which were aggressively stupid and piled, as I noted, unsupported enigma upon forced and convenient plot "twist," so that even the participation of writing staff from actually good programs didn't encourage me. I've looked at at least one episode since the first season, and found the acting unimpressive and the general feel less than engaging (though of course I didn't have a clear idea of all the backstory accumulated by then).

You don't have to be ignorant of LOST to not like it. I am amused by Hulu's "face-off" between LOST and FAST FORWARD, another rather bad series from my experience of the first three episodes, but perhaps it has improved since then.

Anonymous said...

I agree with most of what Max said, including how good this last season has been.

Yes, there are times you want to grab them and say "enough with the deliberate obscurity" but overall it's still one of the most worthwhile ways to spend an hour on television.

I'd like the critics to name three hour long dramas they watch and let us tear them apart in kind.

I for one am going to feel bereft when one of my few remaining favorite shows is gone.



Jeff

Anonymous said...

As to Todd's last comment...watching "at least one episode" a season is not going to do it. You had to dive in from day one and watch every week, good and bad. The comment about bad acting? How would you know if you watch "one episode a season"?

Needless to say, I disagree. The writers and the actors have created a slew of memorable characters. We might not always like them, we might want them dead or gone at times, but we won't forget them either.


Jeff

Bill Crider said...

Okay, maybe I should have watched. I remember that Jeff recommended it to me way back when it started.

Randy Johnson said...

I did watch the pilot, but show nothing that would bring me back for any more.

Deb said...

In some ways, "Lost" reminds me of "Twin Peaks": A great premise, a genuinely spooky mystery, but then, as time passed, a sense that things were/are spiraling out of the creators' control.

There's probably a metaphor in there somewhere.

Max Allan Collins said...

Mean absolutely no offense, Todd, if you dislike Abrams' work so much, I don't understand why you bothered with LOST in the first place.

I am somewhat sensitive to this, as the guy completing Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer novels. Spillane was very controversial, to say the least, and every now and then we get a review from a Spillane hater. I always find that head-scratching in so many ways -- why would a publication assign a book to somebody who hates the author? What makes somebody hate an author so much they wade into discussions of works they are (and should be) ignoring?

Not an attack, truly. I just find this curious, and I see it all the time.

utter_scoundrel said...

From Lindelof's twitter feed: "This is me blithely informing y'all that we have no intention of tossing any turnips. Don't believe everything you read."

I honestly think they'll resolve the major questions. But the minor ones, like the one the resporter refers to - " who exactly was the economist Sayid shot on the golf course" - who cares?

Todd Mason said...

I try to keep an open mind, Max...and to give people second and third chances, particularly when I'm told they're doing better work than before, or are working with people who have done good work. Even as little as I liked the pilot and other first-season episodes of LOST, it was still better than FELICITY or ALIAS. And, yes, Jeff, I can indeed judge that the acting leans toward the mannered and the perfervid, because the script and direction command this, when it's right in front of me, even at looking at an episode in a season. The characters from jump have tended to strike me as bland caricatures.

Deb, I really don't think the creators were ever in control...as even the fans here suggest, they chose to follow the usual Abrams prescription of We got ourselves in a bind? Well, let's drop in something even less likely, and pretend it's mythic, rather than lazy. Tell me that wasn't the SOP of ALIAS, and then tell me that it never happens on LOST or FRINGE. Hell, it was one of the weaknesses of ANGEL, a series I usually did like.

If I didn't give people at least second chances, my rather uimpressed take on THIRTYSOMETHING would've led me to miss both RELATIVITY, which most people missed, and the even better ONCE AND AGAIN, which remains my favorite dramatic serial, even edging out such other favorites as THE WIRE, HOMICIDE, the original FORSYTE SAGA (though I haven't seen that one since I was a kid...it was fascinating then), or the recent, crib-strangled JOURNEYMAN (KAREN SISCO was another I still miss). My favorite new series is THE GOOD WIFE. Tear away, Jeff. (I generally like Lisa de Moraes's work, but haven't read this one yet.)

Terrill Lee Lankford said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Terrill Lee Lankford said...

My problem with LOST was that I had the distinct feeling that the writers were coming up with a lot of material that THEY hadn't figured out all the way (or maybe not even part of the way) - and I had the feeling they never would. I even think that was the mandate over there. Keep 'em guessing and the resolutions are not important. It was cliffhanger as content. Which can be wearing on a person - especially a person without TiVo.

I don't need everything explained to me, but if I think the people creating the art have only done half the job and don't know at least MOST of the answers themselves I feel used. And dirty.

I hate that.

So I gave up on LOST quite a while ago. Sorry, Procter and Gamble (or whoever the sponsors were).

Max Allan Collins said...

One thing the creators of the show have made clear from the start is that they knew where they were going -- how it would resolve.

That they weren't lying -- and indulging in the make-it-up-as-we-go style of Chris Carter that eventually made X-FILES a disappointment as to its over-reaching arc -- is being made clear to those of us who are watching this final season.

Todd Mason said...

Fair enough. I wasn't engaged, as I was with THE X-FILES up through the "sucicide" of Mulder.

Anonymous said...

Todd, our favorite new series is GOOD WIFE too.

Jeff

Mike said...

I've been enjoying the unfolding of the story over the years, I've watched from the start. If there are a few minor loose ends, I don't care. It's a rare book, TV show, movie, etc. that answers 100% of all the questions.

Until the final episode closes out, I refuse to get upset over any questions that might or might not be answered. Then I might be annoyed by something, but the trip was still worth the time. Maybe I'm more of a "journey" sort of fellow as opposed to a "destination" sort.

They had better explain what Richard's part in all this is, though.

Terrill Lee Lankford said...

I'm a journey kind of guy too, but for me the journey felt directionless. And it certainly seemed to get sidetracked a lot, as if they didn't really have this master plan that Max and J.J. are talking about.

I guess I should give it another try.

Todd Mason said...

Any journey which starts with a jet engine sitting on the ground for several minutes, and still running, just for the Kewl effect of having someone sucked into it, is already got some splaining to do that they probably aren't ever going to get around to, since the whole point was to have someone sucked into it...this is the kind of thing that put me off in the first five minutes, much less the tropical island polard bears and the electricity monster borrowed from THE OUTER LIMITS. OK, they're in Hell. NO, THEY'RE NOT. OkK, they're not...just somewhere where you can fix a circuit-board walkie talkie with a paper clip and polar bears don't die of heat prostration in a consistent 80F and jet engines run after they've hit the ground for minutes on end...and it'll all be explained in five years. And isn't Hurley funny?

No.