Sunday, May 23, 2010

LOST Running Diary: The End

As I type this, we are 20 minutes from the start of the final episode of LOST. I'm at a LOST costume party (pictures forthcoming) with the entire website crew, and we've spent the day eating LOST-themed food, decorating the room with Dharma logos, watching old episodes, and doing a joint power rankings. After intense debate, the consensus Top Ten are:

10. Hurley
9. Juliet
8. Alpert
7. Penny
6. Desmond
5. Man in Black
4. Ben Linus
3. Jacob
2. Locke
1. Jack

I'm finally ready to tackle this 2.5 hour event with a running diary. What kind of cool things should we expect to see? Supposedly, the return of Shannon and Walt? Charlie hooking up with Claire at the concert? Desmond going into the source of the Island? More major characters dying (please Kate!!)? It's safe to see that anything can happen. I'm most curious about where the sideways characters go when they have their joint "awareness" event. I'm going to around the room and find out what everyone wants to see, or what mystery they want resolved.

Andy: Someone important is going to die, and I just want to see the closing scene.... and whether Sayid will come back...
Jay: I'm looking forward to the benefit concert, and I think Claire is going to have her baby.
Doob: I want to see HOW they kill the Man in Black. I think Flashsideways is what happens when MiB leaves the Island.
Dave: WHY DOES ELOISE KNOW EVERYTHING?!?! And how will they kill her off?

Ok, the buildup of an event six years in the making is finally concluding. There's a tinge of sadness mixed in with the excitement and anticipation of this finale. Maybe it's the Michael Giachinno raft-sailing music that's getting me worked up, but I can't cry. NO JACK TEARS TONIGHT!!!

8:59 - For the last time.... let's go...
9:00 - Recaps are for chumps... we've spent the entire day doing recaps!!!! GET TO THE SHOW!!!! -1
9:01 - First scene... a sad slow motion shot of the great Oceanic airline with some sad music. Jack at his desk.... mixed with Jack, the "new Jacob." Dr. Linus at work... mixed with Ben in the jungle with Locke.... and then Locke at the hospital. You get the idea... these worlds are coming together!!! Who is the bozo driving the baggage cart?? +1
9:03 - Christian Shepard special delivery!!!!! Are they going to put the coffin on a dolly? Creepy... It should be mentioned yet again that Sideways Desmond is awesome!!! +2
9:04 - "Who are you?" " My name is Desmond Hume, and even though you don't realize it, I'm your friend. As for what I want..... I want to leave..." Approving hmmmmms from around the room. +2
9:06 - Jack just finished giving Hurley, Sawyer, and Kate a sit-rep. They're pretty much laying out the plot of this whole finale. They need to protect the source, and Locke wants to destroy it, which means they need to get Desmond. Hurley: "I got a bad feeling about this." The writers just couldn't resist squeezing in another Star Wars reference. +3

Commercial Break 1: Despite the 9 people in the room, it's mysteriously quiet. No one is theorizing or predicting, there's just a quiet calm, almost like everyone's patiently settling in for a long ride.

9:10 - Hurley and Sayid showed up at some apartment building to jog Sayid's memory. it's Charlie's!!!! And Hurley can't contain the glee and excitement of seeing his old best buddy. Too bad Charlie still doesn't care.... so Hurley pops him with a tranq dart. Sweet. +2
9:13 - "I took it because the Island is all I've got left. It's the only thing I haven't managed to ruin." -Jacob/Jack, the truly reformed doc. +2
9:14 - This scene between Locke, Ben, and Sawyer just gathered a lot of steam, and I didn't expect it. A lot of awesome stuff happened, including Locke laying out his grand plan, hinting at the sinking of the Island, and Sawyer knocking out Ben one last time. But who saved Desmond???? +2
9:16 - VINCENT AND ROSE AND BERNARD!!!! Uh oh, and the smoke monster has arrived. Will he kill them??!?!?!? I fear that he will!!!! +3
9:17 - Desmond ends the tense standoff by agreeing to go with Locke. As much as I like to rag on Rose and Bernard, I would've hated it if they would've gotten the Zoe treatment. The other interesting thing from this scene is that Smokey was uncharacteristically nasty when he promised Desmond that he would make their deaths hurt if he didn't leave with him. +1

Commercial Break 2: It looks like this episode is going to try and get closure on as many people as possible, so we got our only taste of Rose and Bernard. I'm glad they are out of the way. Let's get on to the power players...

9:21 - Desmond continues to be oddly ambiguous, and he already hints that he knows about the light source... hmmmmm... +2
9:22 - First real good news of the night: ALPERT LIVES. Miles quips about Ricardos getting punted through the jungle, and then they are off to blow up Ajira 316. Lapidus could still fly that thing, you know... +1
9:23 - Back in Sideways world, and Det. Ford is on his way to make sure Sun will remain safe since she witnessed Sayid's killing spree. That will put him, Sun, Jin, Jack, and Locke in the same place... +2
9:24 - DOCTOR JULIET CARLSON IS HERE, LOOKING HOTTER THAN EVER!!! By the way, V blows, but her theme music rocks. Does this mean Juliet isn't David's father and Jack's ex? Her ultrasound of Sun just triggered her Island Enlightenment. The pregnancy news just triggered JIN'S enlightenment, with the reunion music!!! I just got chills. Wow. +10
9:26 - In an almost too-corny moment, they know their kid is a girl, that her name will be Ji-Yeon, and they remember how to speak English. Almost too-corny, but still awesome. +4

Commercial Break 3 - The Sun/Jin scene was a big hit with a group and we LOVE to bash Sun, so it had to be pretty sweet. Doob thinks that was their greatest scene together, and more than a few of us had the chills. Someone just tried making a Friends joke and got slammed (rightfully) for it. Friends has no place near LOST.

9:30 - Sawyer's maybe-last nickname for Hurley? Bigfoot. Underwhelming. -3
9:31- Sideways Locke looks like a dope with his shower cap on. "I'll see you on the other side," says Doctor Jack. He was referring to the end of surgery, but perhaps he's hinting at the return of the old John Locke to the Island world. We can always hope... +3
9:32 - Yeahhhh Alpert music, and Miles notices a gray hair. Now he's allowed to age and experience------NEVERMIND THEY FIND LAPIDUS IN THE OCEAN. THE ROOM ERUPTS IN APPLAUSE!!!!! "Well if we leave, that thing won't have a plane to leave in." I missed you, Frank J. Lapidus... +4
9:34 - Showdown out in the open!!! Kate is retarded. I think this is where they shot the Season 3 finale, and maybe also Season 2. Yikes. Locke and Jack just had maybe their greatest scene together. I'm stunned and floored and overjoyed by this setup. Both of these titans are on top of their game right now, like Tango and Cash!!!! +10

Commercial Break 4: This half hour has been incredibly good. All the heavyweights are bringing it this week, even people I normally hate like Sawyer.

9:39 - Jack and Juliet!!!!!! Tickets to the concert!!!!!! "I JUST GAVE THEM TO YOUR MOM!!!!" Juliet will probably deliver Claire's baby!!!! As exciting as this is, I'm kinda bummed that Jack and Juliet couldn't work things out. They were always my favorite couple. +5
9:41 - Jack, Desmond, and Locke are heading the rest of the way on their own... the Top 3 in the LOST Power Rankings right now, so this is an epic fit. Locke's calling for a hell of a storm, so this is going to be amazing.... THE LIGHT!!! It's a little weird that we're only 40 minutes into the finale and we're already at the source. -3
9:43 - Desmond is talking to Jack about the sideways world, and believes the light in the tunnel is his ticket to Sideways land... but Jack already tried to change the past, so he's not buying it. Ohmygod they are goin in. +3

Commercial break 5: Some people are noticing that the light in the cave is a little dimmer than it was before. Target just aired a commercial that had the Smoke Monster roaring into camp and then it cuts to the picture of a smoke alarm. Very clever stuff... Target is light, and Walmart... dark. Thumbs up! Another Target commercial... someone is trying to enter the numbers into the Hatch computer, but it's not working... cut to a shot of a $20 keyboard. Also very clever.

9:47 - Hurley is still running around town trying to trigger Sayid's Island epiphany. Someone is getting jumped in the alley, and it's Shannon and Boone!! This is going to do it for him..... and it did. I hate Shannon, but I hate Shannon and Sayid as a couple even more!!!! Ooooo Boone was in on this little scheme, as he is also Island-aware. More closure for supporting characters!!! +6
9:50 - Back on Hydra Island, Claire is pissed for the final time, and decides not to join in the latest escape plan. Good riddance. +2
9:52 - "If there was a button down there to push, we could fight about whether or not to push it." "You're not John Locke. You're disrespecting him by wearing his face." These two are dominating tonight. Okay, Desmond is down in the SOURCE. There was a nice little season 1 throwback shot just now. Like when they opened the hatch and we looked up at Jack and Locke, the same thing just happened at the waterfall in the cave. +5

Commercial Break 6: We now have competing plans on the Island. Desmond is trying to bridge the gap to the sideways world, Jack is battling with Locke, and the remaining castaways are going to try and fly off the Island. Last I checked, the nose of the plane was wedged into the jungle, and I don't think 6 castaways are going to be able to turn that thing around.

9:58 - Concert time!!! Juliet is looking hot... Claire, not so much. +3
9:59 - OOOOO Faraday is taken back by his love for Charlotte. Hopefully he's enough to trigger her memory.... ooooo I guess not. -2
10:00 - At cursed table 23 are Desmond, Kate, Claire, and Davey. Suave Pierre Chang introduces DriveShaft + Faraday. This is also happening earlier than I would've thought in this episode. -5
10:02 - DESMOND IS AT THE SOURCE!!! A glowing well in the center of the Island (with cheesy special FX). Uh oh, he just moved a stopper at the center of the creek and everything goes dark and quiet. The water was replaced by flame (Balrog?), and Locke is making a run for it. +5
10:04 - SHOWDOWN!! Locke vs. Jack, round 1. FIGHT!!! I guess Locke is now mortal since Jack bloodied his lip?!? With a rock to the head (just like what his mom did), Jack is out cold. +6

COMMERCIAL BREAK 7: Doob didn't think that Island was ACTUALLY a cork, she thought it was just a metaphor. Dave thinks that Locke's lip is bleeding because he is no longer the smoke monster. Since Desmond removed the cork, HE is now Smokey. Both are interesting thoughts. I wonder if Jacob would be pissed that Jack refused to protect the one thing he swore to do, or if he knew all along that this would happen, and maybe it's apart of his plan? LOST has conditioned me to instinctively think that a character is instantly lying in every situation, and also that they plan for everything that has gone wrong.

10:09 - Claire is about to poop out little Aaron, and obviously Kate will be there for her again. Yawn. Two stupid characters back together again. -15
10:11 - Birth of Aaron. This is sooooooooo dumb. Island Enlightenment for Kate and Claire. Gayyyyyy. -20
10:13 - Though I hate the Charlie/Claire/Kate dynamic, I'm still getting chills. Sorry for being such a girl (I blame it on the music). -7
10:14 - The Island is getting ready to implode like in Congo, and BIG BEN LINUS WAS JUST CRUSHED BY A TREE. NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! -5
10:17 - "LOCKKKKKKKKKKKKE!!!!!!!!!!" - Jack *CYMBALS CLASH!!!!* +1
10:18 - JACK VS. LOCKE, ROUND 2, FIGHT!!!!!!! Achilles finisher (says Dave)!!!!! +2

Commercial Break 8: They kinda overdid that big fight scene, but I'm on board for all this drama. If you can't summon up the intensity and emotion now, then why bother? I'm glad they're taking everything out of the bag. Though the symmetry of them leaving the Island the same way in which they arrived (on a plane) is nice, I don't think that thing will be airborne anytime soon. Anticipate everyone using the boat to leave, if it's even possible.

10:22 - Jack and Locke are still battling like Neo and Agent Smith (bad comparison, since the Matrix sucks and this does not). It sure looks like the Island is... sinking.---- but wait!!! LOCKE STABS JACK!!!! FINISH him!!! Oooo, Kate saves the day with a bullet to the back of Smokey. "You're too late...." Smokey's last words before Jack boots him over the cliff. WOWWWWWWW. Is he dead??? Is Desmond next!?!?!?!+14
10:25 - Locke is about to have his epiphany... will he remember being Locke or Smokey? WALKABOUT FLASHBACK!!!!! LOCKE IS BACK!!! CHILLS!!!!! OOOO Jack almost felt it too! "You don't have a son, Jack!!!" "I hope that somebody does for you, what you've just done for me." WOW Who will that be for Jack!!!! +9

Commercial Break 9: Who hasn't had their moment???? From the main characters, only Jack and Sawyer haven't, right? Will Kate do it for Jack? Will Juliet do it for Sawyer? And what moments will trigger it? Kate stitching up Jack like in the pilot? LaFleur giving Juliet a sunflower? If Desmond is the new Smoke Monster, does he necessarily have to be evil? Dave thinks he will be a nice Smoke Monster.

10:31 - Jack's wound looks pretty bad. I guess they were able to lift the tree off of Ben after all... so why bother crushing him to begin with? Maybe to show Ben that people care about him after all? I hate fake drama... -2
10:33 - Back in sidewaysland, Sawyer is chatting with Jin and Sun, and they're too happy to be bothered by his nonsense. Where is WALT? +2
10:35 - "If the Island's goin down, I'm goin down with it." And with that, Hurley and Ben are sticking with Jack to put the cork back in the Island to fix it. JACK AND KATE SMOOCH!!!!! THEY LOVE EACH OTHER!!!! MORE CHILLS!!!! +15

Commercial Break 10: Target is 3/3 with their LOST commercials. The latest one has a boar running through a jungle, and then it cuts to BBQ sauce. Well done. By the way, I forgot to enter the button on My browser shrunk and started shaking, and when I toggled over to it, the screen said SYSTEM FAILURE SYSTEM FAILURE SYSTEM FAILURE. I guess I wasn't cut out for hatch duty. We've been pushing it since late this morning, and now all of it has gone to waste...

10:42 - Like Harrison Ford in Six Days, Seven Nights (underrated gem), Kate and Sawyer are cliff diving.... Also, Sawyer and Jack just shared their first deja vu in the sideways world. LAFLEUR AND JULIET!!!! They're about to go dutch on coffee!!! Woo hoo they both had their moment at the same time, accompanied by the awesome Juliet theme music. The chills keep on coming this episode, but neither Jack/Kate, Claire/Charlie, Rose/Bernard, nor Juliet/LaFleur could get me to break down. Still, that last scene got me the closest. +13

Commercial Break 11: If I had to rank all the former lovebird reunions in the sideways land, Lafleur/Juliet would be number one, followed by Charlie/Claire, and then Sayid/Shannon. Jack and Kate's kiss doesn't count since it was present time, but if it did, that would've been second best. Doob thinks that Lapidus/Airplane should also count as a lovebird reunion, and she's right.

10:51 - Jack and Kate are about to have their moment outside the concert. I guess they are saving the best for last. "I've missed you so much." And just like that, the Doc is back! Or maybe not. Hmmmm... that wasn't a full-blown experience for him. Locke couldn't get him to do it, and now Kate has also failed. Who else could it be???? -6
10:54 - "You're not supposed to die!!! THE ISLAND NEEDS YOU!!!" Jack is giving the governorship of the Island to HURLEY!!!! Poor Ben just got snubbed... he must feel like shit right now. +3
10:55 - Awww, that was a really touching scene between Jack and Hurley, and they're about to seal it with some nasty creek water. This kinda blows. Hurley shouldn't be the Island Protector, and if he stays like this, then it'll be a huge letdown. -30
10:57 - In case any of you rubes forgot over the past 3 years, Lapidus is a helluva pilot, and he just got the plane up and running. +3
10:58 - Jack is now down in the source, and with all the steam and stalactites, it begs an obvious comparison to Hell. Is Jack even able to put the cork back in place without getting fried? -10
11:02 - Cork back in place. Plane ready to jet. This all seems a little too easy. There has to be one more wrinkle from the Smoke Monster... Nevermind, the plane gets away with some nice raft-launching music. +5
11:05 - Could this be it for the doc? He's down in the magic pool shedding some major Jack tears and then---commerical. -25

Commerical Break 12: Place your bets: Will the final scene take place in the sideways world or the Island world? Everyone guesses the Island, which makes my question dumb. Still no Walt, and no Christian Shephard, either. We're all thinking that Jack will finally reach Enlightenment when he opens up Christian's coffin to find it..... empty.

11:11 - LOST's best tandem, real John Locke and Ben Linus are sharing a great scene together. Ben is now combing his hair like the real Ben instead of nerdy Dr. Linus. Cue the awesome Linus music. By the way, I also got chills during this scene. Everyone is gathering at the church, but wait a minute, Gorilla!!! John Locke is getting ready to storm into the church on foot!!!! MORE CHILLS!!! +35
11:13 - Did Jack survive the energy in the cave? Will he become the new Smokey? Ten bucks says this is one of those things they'll never tell us. Since the light is restored, does that mean the Island won't implode and sink? Awww, Ben just got recruited by Hurley to help him run the show. Everybody is winning in this finale, and that's the way I like it. +20
11:15 - WILL JACK BE IN HIS OWN CASKET SINCE HE JUST DIED IN THE REAL WORLD!!?!?!?!!? The theories and predictions will never end with this show. WAIT ANOTHER SECOND!!!! JACK'S NOT DEAD ON THE ISLAND. Apparently, the cave just spit him out like it did the Man in Black, and despite the energy overload, the bash to the head, and the stab wound, he seems to be okay. WHAT?!?!?!? +30
11:18 - Will Christian really be in the casket???? This could be the scene where they filmed 10 different endings. Who's it going to be??!?! Whoa now, the casket is finally causing Jack's Island Awareness, and it's mostly Kate stuff. Casket goes up.... and IT'S EMPTY!!!! Christian isn't dead?!?!?!??! CHRISTIAN ISN'T DEAD!!!!!!!!! I've been waiting for this scene for the past 3 years!!!! Wait, Jack's dead too?!! They're hugging and crying and I'm starting to get worked up. Sidewaysland is deadland?!?!?! "Everybody dies... some of them before you, some of them after. There is no now... here." +25
11:22 - Jack is stumbling out of the jungle. WAIT. BACK TO THE BAMBOO FOREST. SYMMETRY!!!! He's going back to the beginning to die... +45
11:23 - Calling it now: The final scene is Jack's eye closing. +10
11:26 - Big cast reunion inside the church. So this is heaven, or some sort of afterlife (purgatory). There are lots of handshakes and hugs and slowmotion and happy music. I'm stunned right now, but I'm not getting chills or tears or anything. I'm realizing that this is the end... that's what I'm feeling. This is the last scene of LOST, and they aren't going down with twists and turns... they're going out with a happy goodbye. +60
11:28 - Awww VINCENT!!! Now I'm getting the chills. Between the nasty shoe from the opening scene of the pilot, and now Vincent, I'm loving the nostalgia. +30
11:29 - Called it. W0w +50


A lot of stuff is left unanswered (Hurley never came face to face with the numbers), and a lot of stuff just doesn't seem important now (example: Why was the show tilting towards sciency and science-fictiony stories only to then finish on religion stuff?), but these little gripes hardly matter. LOST could have ended with some clever twist. Another plane could've crashed. Locke and Jack could be sitting on the beach playing backgammon forever. It could've been fake. But no. In the end, the writers opted for a satisfying ending involving a touching goodbye to the season 1 castaways. Yeah, Juliet (Season 3) was thrown in there for Sawyer, Libby (Season 2) was thrown in there for Hurley, and Desmond and Penny (Season 3) also joined the trip to heaven, but really it was great seeing Jack, Christian, Kate, Sawyer, Locke, Jin, Sun, Hurley, Boone, Shannon, Charlie, Claire, and Sayid all in the same room again. Their individual redemption could only be achieved through the help of a group (fancy way of saying 'Live Together, Die Alone'), and this afterlife together is that reward. The flashsideways were still very trying at times, but the payoff was worth it. Also, Jack ending back in the bamboo with Vincent is just a really cool way to go. Anyone who is pissed off about this ending probably would not have been satisfied with any ending. I, for one, LOVED this episode. I feel like they wrote it for the fans. All the lovebirds hooked up! Lapidus is rescued! Alpert is finally allowed to die! People that wanted to escape get to leave! Smokey is defeated! Jack saves the day! Hurley is the new leader, and appoints Ben as his second-in-command! Then they all get to leave together! These little victories accumulated throughout the night and culminated in a very rewarding experience.



Andy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andy said...

I was slightly disappointed last night, but the more I read and think about "The End," the more I'm coming around on it. A fitting and adequate ending with some minor deficiencies (no Michael/Walt, MIB's death, etc). I told myself that I wanted it to be better, but how could it? How could it have been any different?

I have invested a lot of my time in LOST, and it has been well worth it. I highly doubt that another TV show will ever come close to reaching the intellectual, dramatic, and just plain awesomeness of LOST. Easily the greatest television show I have ever seen. It's sad that it is over, but the time is right.

Herb, great job all season with the recaps.