10. The Tailies
LOST was riding high at the end of season one thanks to its 20 million viewers (isn't it weird that the lowest rated ep. from season one was the awesome Jack-centric "White Rabbit," and the highest rated episode from season one was the stinky Kate-centric "Whatever the Case May Be" (That's also when Sayid started getting close to Shannon. Barf.) But anyway, Season 2 started off with an astounding 23 million viewers, but that number dropped more and more each week. Why? My belief is that it is the stupid tailies fault. In an effort to keep things fresh, the writers brought in the survivors from the tail section of the plane, but that meant giving even less screen time to the 12 or so main characters from season 1. One episode (the Other 48 days) was an exclusive Tailie episode. I think that the new viewers that signed up for Season 2 didn't get that a lot of the big guns were only in one scene each week. And what have the Tailies done since arriving? Eko was killed in Season 3 (he quit the show), The DUI sisters were dropped at the end of season 2, and Bernard is the only one left alive (but is currently MIA). It wouldn't bother me so much except that these characters contribute almost nothing to the overall mythology of the show. They didn't solve any big mysteries or create many big events. They were just some extra pieces brought in to be moved by bigger and better characters. I think we can all agree that we would've rather seen more Locke, Jack, and even Charlie than these bums. (For all the screen time they got that year, they were outdone by the other new addition that year... Henry Gale)
9. Anthony Cooper Goes to the Island
In season 3 (the Man From Tallahassee) when Ben talked about a magic box that could give you anything you ever wanted, would any of us expect that something to be Locke's dad?!?!? No, because this is one of the worst twists that the smug writers could ever come up with. The fact that Cooper is also the original Sawyer who caused the murder-suicide is actually a great twist. But for us to believe that Alpert and the Others kidnapped Cooper, brought him to the Island on the sub just so Locke could kill him is a bit of a stretch. I don't see why Locke having to kill his dad is a prerequisite for joining the Others, and I just sour about the whole thing. Wouldn't it have been cooler if the original Sawyer, after conning the Fords, left and joined the Dharma Iniative? Wouldn't it have been better that when Sawyer travels back in time to the 70s, only then does he encounter some guy with "Sawyer" on his jumpsuit. Plus, he couldn't kill him without compromising his position with the Dharma folks, so who knows how long he would've had to wait. Admit it; my story is ten times better than loser Sawyer giving papa Locke the Jabba treatment in the Black Rock.
8. The Significance of Aaron
Ever since the beginning, Aaron was supposed to be this incredibly unique child. He was born on the Island. The psychic said that he was not to be raised by another. Well Kate raised him for 3 years and then left him behind with his grandma. I guess you could even say that Claire was punished for NOT giving him up (she is now hanging with her undead pops in the cabin). The Others wanted to cut the kid out of her but failed. Big deal. Unless the Losties get off the Island AGAIN, which doesn't seem likely, we may never see Aaron ever again (and really, none of us want to).
7. The Hydra Station
Season 3 started off with such a bang. We were finally going to learn about the Others and find out why they have this beef with our castaways. But the first 3rd of the season took place in those lame cages. The story was almost always focused on Jack, Sawyer, or Kate, leaving Locke and Co. in the dust. The scenery never changed, and then when they finally broke out of the lame cages, LOST went on a 3 month break. The writers like to excuse this by saying "Well, we felt metaphorically that we were trapped in cages because LOST didn't have an end date." Great. You suck.
6. Time Travel Conundrums
I've always thought that if you're going to introduce time travel into any movie or show, you have to be wary about how you use it because everything has to fit. There must be no room for "Well... that doesn't seem right." Give credit to the dopey writers of Lost for taking us to the 70s, but there are still some questions to be asked. For instance, at the end of Season 3, Ben, on the radio, orders the deaths of Jin, Sayid, and Bernard. How can he do this when he knows that Jin and Sayid end up in the 70s with the Dharma folk? At the beginning of Season 3, Ben okays the execution of Sawyer via angry Pickett. How can he order this when he knows Sawyer ends up in the 70s? Why would Ben tempt fate like this? Just saying that "whatever happens is supposed to happen" is a cop out. We know that Ben has some memory of the past because he remembers Juliet (remember the loser therapist saying she looks just like her?), so how can he remember her and not remember LaFleur? How could he not remember Sayid as the guy who shot him 30 years ago? How could he not remember Miles (when he walked in demanded millions of dollars) as the security guy from 30 years ago? Why was he surprised when Bentham told him that Jin was alive when he knows that Jin ends up in the 70s, alive and well? Only some of this could be explained by...
5. Baby Ben Forgets His Past
The premier example of lazy writing. I was much happier thinking that Ben knew all along what Sayid was (he seems to imply this at Habitat for Humanity) and chose to play it close to the vest like he does with, oh I dunno, EVERY OTHER BIG SECRET! Ben is notorious for lying and hiding the whole story, this could've been the best example of that. Instead, Dick Alpert takes him down into and robs the kid of innocence in a sleazy, Jessica's law kind of way. I refuse to believe that Ben would have no memory of his time with Lafleur, Juliet, Jin, and Miles.
4. The Significance of Walt
Even more so than Aaron, Walt was the "special" one on the Island. He could make birds commit suicide! He made us believe that he manifested that polar bear from the comic book! There was so much for potential for what could become of Walt. The Others went after him just like they went after Aaron, yet in the end, Walt sails away with his dad and never looks back. He ends up hating his dad for what he did to Libby and Ana Lucia, and just when you think that he might be coming back, Bentham decides to not invite him. What a waste...
3. Kate's Reduced Sentence
Not only was Kate guilty of pre-meditated murder, but she also ran from the law numerous times, caused the death of her old boyfriend, and robbed a bank. When she finally was brought before a judge, her defense was "he deserved getting blown up, and oh, by the way, 5 years later I would crash on the Island and, according to my buddy Jack, I turn out to be a pretty swell hero." And just because her mom refuses to testify, she gets ZERO prison time!?!?! She is given 10 years probation and is not allowed to leave the state (which she ends up doing, anyway). Dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb.
2. Season 3 Flashbacks
In season one, using flashbacks as a storytelling device was a fresh and original idea. We got to learn about Locke's past as a pussy cripple. We got to see Jack's drunkard of a father. And we got to find out all the skeletons in the castaways closets. In season 2, we were still happy to see more Sawyer cons and Sayid torturing his superior officer in Iraq. We even got some fresh meat from the Tailies (meh) and Desmond in the big finale. But in Season 3, the device starts to fall to pieces. Fantastic flashbacks from Ben, Juliet, Desmond, and Hurley couldn't save it, either. This season would have Sun cheating on Jin with the bald manky English teacher, Locke working on a weed farm (!?!?!), and goth Claire in the hospital. Oh, and how about the widely recognized (even by Cuse and Lindleof) WORST episode in series history, Stranger in a Strange Land? "Let's tell a story about Jack's tattoos!!!!" In the old days, when Andy, Dave and I would watch LOST in the dorms, there was build-up and anticipation when the episode started because we wanted to know who the focus of the flashback was. But around this time in Season 3, we really just wanted to get back to the Island events.
1. Nikki and Paulo
They tried adding castaways from the other end of the plan and failed, in my opinion. They tried introducing brand new characters from the Island (the Others), and it was a stroke of genius. In Season 3, the writers thought to themselves "Hey, we've got plenty of castaways walking around in the background, let's try and tell their side of the story." And thus, Nikki and Paolo were abruptly thrown into the mix. It was like the stinky LOST video game, where you bring in some nobody loser to interact with the heavyweights of the show. The characters weren't likable, and frankly, weren't needed. Once again, LOST had plenty of main characters to work with, there was no reason to stretch themselves even thinner. The only redeeming part of their story was Sawyer repeatedly saying "Who the hell is Nikki?" just like the rest of us. And while I did enjoy their fun send off episode (a cool plot if nothing else), these two will never ever ever ever ever be missed. The writers learned their lesson, and next season they brought in some talent fresh off the boat (pun!!!!).