Before I get into my main topic, a quick word about a very cool event that I’m participating in this weekend, the 3rd annual Mellow Mushroom and Terrapin Pints for Prostates Benefit Bike Ride. The ride begins at the E. Colonial Mellow Mushroom and heads over to the Winter Park MM location via the Little Econ and Cady Wady trails for a quick snack, a beer, and some water before returning to the E. Colonial location along the same route for the reception. Now, I’m not going to lie to you, even though the ride is 20+ miles round trip this event is all about the reception afterward with some excellent MM food and Terrapin beverages, and raising money for a good cause. So this is not exactly much of a training ride, but sometimes you just have to sacrifice some for the greater good. There’s still time to register so dig up the $30 entry fee and head to either Orlando Mellow Mushroom location to get in before it’s too late. Now that the important stuff is out of the way…
I recently went back and watched Lost from beginning to end over a period of several months. Those of you who know me may remember that I was extremely late to the Lost party, taking in the entire series in one, blurry, sleepless three week period directly preceding the broadcast of the series finale last year. At that time, I loved every bit of it, except for the finale itself, which I found to be uncharacteristically ham-handed and obvious. More than a few of my friends who were Lost diehards took me to task for this opinion, saying that I couldn’t understand the attachment that people who had followed the show for six years had for the characters and how it pretty much had to end the way it did. After some thought I concede that this was a fair point, so I resolved to go back and watch the show over a more reasonable time frame.
I finished watching the series finale again last night and have 5 thoughts that came to mind after completing round 2:
- I loathed Charlie’s character then and, even though I didn’t think it possible, dislike him more now. I know his death was a pivotal moment in the show and that his demise was supposed to be an emotional event, but I was frankly relieved to be shod of him at the end of season three (as much as it is possible to be rid of someone in Lost at least). Just hearing the almost equally annoying Claire say his name (Chaaahh-leeee) sends shivers up my spine.
- Desmond’s character, on the other hand, was infinitely more awesome than I realized the first time and quite frankly he wasn’t on screen enough. And who wouldn’t be lucky to find someone in their life as perfect for them as Penny was to Desmond?
- How in the world has nobody made the cop show with Sawyer and Miles? I mean, seriously, who wouldn’t watch this?
- As much as I liked Ben Linus as a character, part of me was disappointed the way that he was emasculated during his redemption at the end of the show. Michael Emerson was just soooo good at the playing the bad guy that it just seemed a waste not to have him go down swinging as the baddie to the end. I did, however appreciate the fact that once they decided to go the redemption route for Ben that he didn’t immediately follow the others when they “moved on.”
- Now, for the finale. The last scene with the camera focusing on Jack’s closing eye as the plane leaves the island was really nice symmetry and in retrospect the best ending for the show. On second viewing I did actually enjoy and appreciate the finale much more, but there was still one part that I absolutely couldn’t stand, and that was the scene between Jack and Christian at the church, just before he joins the rest of the islanders. In retrospect this was the scene that turned me against the finale the first time around, as I found it to be unnecessarily literal and totally out of character for the show.
The best description that I read of it described Christian’s speech explaining everything to Jack as the “Scooby Doo ending,” where Velma ended every mystery by explaining the plot in detail and tied everything up in a nice, neat package. It wasn’t what I expecting at the time and even now it seems completely out of place on a show that prided itself on mystery and mythology. I don’t think it necessarily needed to do something as dramatic as The Sopranos “fade to black,” but something a little less obvious definitely seems like a more fitting ending. In fact, I think everything would have worked better if they had simply deleted that scene and had everything unfold exactly as it did.
So after a more considered viewing I do admit that I probably overreacted a bit to the ending originally, but I do still find it a bit disappointing that a show that was willing to take such risks (dramatic shifts in time and sequence, killing off major characters unexpectedly, devoting an entire show to a storyline which did not feature a single major character, etc) decided to take the safe way out with the ending. It shouldn’t detract from the quality of the show though, and I’d easily rank as one of the five best dramas of the past 20 years.
Cheers. (Or perhaps I should say Namaste. And see you in another life, brother.)