The Lost Season 5 & 6 Review – Part 1

The Final Seasons of Lost.

When it came time to write the Lost Season 5 review last year, I couldn’t bring myself to do it. I knew that whatever effort I put forward would be half-hearted and I didn’t want to do the show an injustice.  Lack of time from running a blog network was one excuse, but the truth was that I just didn’t have much more to say about the show than what had already been said. Unlike most people, I actually enjoyed the time-traveling antics and the in-depth look it provided into the Dharma Intiiative, but in terms of overall plot movement and character development, Season 5 was relatively weak. That’s when I made the decision to hold off for a year and do a combined Season 5 and 6 review.  I knew that, without question, I’d have something to say about the end of the greatest television show ever. 

If there’s one adjective I’d use to describe most Lost fans, it’s “cranky”.  It seems like no matter how good the show is, there’s always people complaining about “not getting answers”, things getting “too complex” or “too out there”, or the pace of the plot being “too slow”.  We heard a lot of complaining about things “dragging” in Season 3 (which I personally loved) and then things seemed to quiet down when the writers dropped the massive bomb in the finale where they revealed that Jack and Kate were off the island. People were pretty content for Season 4 (which I actually felt was the worst season), but then when the time traveling started happening, they got vocal again.  It seemed that the complaining continued non-stop until last night’s final episode.  A lot of fans complained that the final season was getting too far away from the original style of the show, focusing too much on Jacob and The Man in Black.  They found the flash sideways to be confusing.  As the episodes ticked by and more and more questions were left unanswered, they grew frustrated.  And after last night, when a lot of those loose ends still remained untied, they became angry.

Not to pat myself on the back, but I don’t think I’ve ever complained about Lost.  Like John Locke, I chose to blindly trust the amazing writers, knowing that there was a plan and a purpose to all the madness.  I didn’t always understand everything, and I still don’t.  But for me, part of the beauty of Lost was in not knowing.  I love the fact that when the six-season DVD set comes out, I’m going to be able to re-watch the entire series without having it all figured out.  Sure, the writers could have easily handed us answers on a silver platter and satiated our curiosity.  However, I wonder how many of us would’ve been actually satisfied had we gotten the answers we’d be waiting so long for.  What are the chances that an in-depth explanation of the island would have lived up to six years of hype?  Chances are, any answer we would have received would have been met with the response, “That’s it?” Instead, we’re left to question and imagine.  As a result, Lost will remain as intriguing 20 years from now as it did the night the plane crashed.

With that being said, it’s time for one last round of character recaps.  For the final incarnation, I’m throwing search engine optimization into the wind and ending with the main characters, rather than starting with them.  It’s the only way I can do Season 5 and 6 justice.

Fionulla Flanagan
(Eloise Hawking)

One of the biggest complaints that people had with the ending of Lost is that so many questions were left unanswered.  Eloise Hawking and her role/motivation in helping the Oceanic Six return to the island is one of those things that I’d personally like to have explained.  Was she sending them back to the island so that they could stop the Smoke Monster?  Was she on Smokey’s side and sending them back so that he could kill them all and be set free?  She was a woman that seemingly had all the answers, and yet, she remains one of the shows biggest questions…

Charles Widmore
(Alan Dale)

Speaking of loose ends…  In Jimmy Kimmel’s “Aloha to Lost” special, the host asked Alan Dale if Widmore was truly a bad guy or a good guy.  Dale responded by saying that he had no idea.  Unreal.  Imagine actually being a character on the show for years and not knowing something as basic as that?  My personal thoughts are that Widmore started out as a bad guy, bent on returning to the island and taking control of its power.  However, when things got really hairy, Jacob paid Charles a visit and Widmore returned to the island to save it.  But honestly, what do I know?

 

Ken Leung
(Miles Strong)

So Miles ends up being the son of the Asian man in all the Dharma videos.  Nice twist!  Unfortunately, the momentum sort of stopped there for Miles.  With his attitude and psychic ability, he had the opportunity to turn into a real power-player on the island.  Instead, he basically ended up being Sawyer’s lackey for Seasons 5 and 6.

 

Michael Faraday
(Jeremy Davies)

I loved the time-travel logic that Faraday brought to Season 5.  One thing that’s always driven me crazy about Hollywood is the lack of common sense that pervades movies like Back to the Future and The Lake House . Finally, somebody got time travel right, and it’s no surprise that it’s the geniuses behind Lost.  What happened, happened.  You can’t change the past, only the future. 

Now, there is one slight time-travel meltdown that has gotten some people worked up.  During Season 6, we were all left to believe that the bomb did go off at the end of Season 5, thereby changing the past.  We all thought the island was at the bottom of the ocean and the Sideways world was the new future created by the change of the past.  If this were the case, then the Jack, Kate, Sawyer, and everyone else we had known should have ceased to exist as they would have erased their past.  Instead, it appeared that they just continued on in some sort of “alternate” reality, which didn’t make a whole lot of sense, especially considering that at the very least, they should have been destroyed by the bomb, not sent forward 30 years into the future.  I was willing to put up with the lack of logic, believing that the whole Sideways world would eventually lead us to a path where the Sideways people reject this new future and embark on a journey to unchange the past and put things back on their original course.

Of course, I was completely wrong about the Sideways world and the bomb.  The writers held true to the mantra “you can’t change the past” and “what happened, happened.”  As a result, we’re left with either one of two things actually happening with the bomb.  On theory is that It did go off, creating the “incident” that lead to the building of the hatch, and that Jack and his crew lucked out by a well-timed “white flash” which transported them into the future the moment the bomb exploded.  My personal theory is that the “incident” happened as we always thought, by Dharma drilling too deep into a pocket of electromagnetic energy, that the bomb was a dud, and that the “explosion” was actually a “white flash” which brought everyone into the present again.

Nestor Carbonell
(Richard Alpert)

The “story” behind Richard proves exactly why I’m glad the writers chose to leave a lot of the series’ questions unanswered.  It’s not that Richard’s backstory of being sold as a slave who gets shipwrecked on the island and is granted immortality in exchange for agreeing to become Jacob’s right hand man was bad. It just wasn’t that good. Richard had been one of the most intriguing characters for me throughout the series.  Why doesn’t he age?  Is he human?  Where did he come from?  I’d been waiting years for those answers, and when I finally got them, they just didn’t quite live up to the hype.  I was expecting my mind to be blown.  Instead, I got a reasonable explanation.

Some things are just better left to the imagination.

 

Elizabeth Mitchell
(Dr. Juliet Burke)

I know some people loved the Sawyer/Juliet romance, but it always seemed a little forced to me.  Sawyer and Kate, I get. They both have that fugitive thing going on and fit together. However, Juliet and Sawyer just seemed like a pair that would never get together in real life.  Now maybe being thrust 30 years into the past and stuck alone with each other could make two people grow close.  But soul-mates?  I’ve had plenty to say over the years about how I thought the island romances should end up.  Needless to say, Sawyer/Juliet wasn’t one of them.

 

Michael Emerson
(Benjamin Linus)

Ben, the man who seemed like he was in total control and had all the answers, actually had none.  For years, he’d been leading the others in the name of Jacob without ever actually meeting him.  If anything, it appears that a lot of his decisions were actually manipulated by The Smoke Monster. As the story progressed, it seems that Ben became weaker and weaker as a character, which is not surprising as he thrived on being in control and manipulating people.  With ol’ Smokey running amok, Ben had lost the things that had come to define him, In the end, though, Ben did find some redemption for himself.  He became Hugo’s #2 on the island, and in the Sideways world, he proved to us that he truly did love Alex, making it clear that she was more than just some girl he stole from the French Woman for his own selfish gain.

 

Henry Ian Cusick. (Desmond David Hume)

The man who started it all by failing to press the button in the hatch, thereby crashing Oceanic Flight 815, was the man who ultimately brought everything to a close.  Without Desmond, the Smoke Monster would have never have been killed, and none of the characters in the Sideways world would have woken up.  Who would have ever thought that Desmond was inside the hatch five years ago?  And once we found him, who would’ve thought that he was the person who would move this entire story from its beginning to its end?

Naveen Andrews
(Sayid Jarrah)

Sayid certainly lost his way in Seasons 5 and 6.  Due to some poor timing, he couldn’t join the rest of the group in the Dharma Initiative back in the 70’s.  As a result, he ended up getting thrown in prison as a presumed spy.  Then he got shot, traveled forward in time 30 years, and died.  Then he came back to life, but as psycho Sayid, who then was somehow turned back into good Sayid before being blown to a million bits during the submarine explosion.  All in all, he was just a difficult guy to figure out towards the end.  Personally, I think leaving him dead at the start of Season 6 would’ve been best.

Don’t even think we’re done yet! There’s still plenty of Lost to cover in Part 2 of the Season 5 & 6 Review!
Derek Hanson

About Derek Hanson

Doctor by day, blogger by night, Derek Hanson is the founder of the Bloguin Network and has been a Patriots fan for more than 20 years.

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