LOST Challenge of the Week: “What They Died For” / “The End”

17 05 2010

Well folks, this is it…the final week of LOST is here!

Can you believe it?  After 6 years of watching the show, it all ends this Sunday at 11:30 pm.  As I write this entry, it’s really starting to hit me that it’s all coming to an end.  I’ve been so busy lately in both my personal and professional life that I haven’t had a chance to reflect much.  But as I write this with a scant 7 days to go until LOST is off the air forever, I realize that I’m about to lose a friend.  And really, that’s the biggest compliment I can give to a creative work of art.  I feel like I’m going to miss this show even before it leaves the air, and gives me a high sense of gratitude to showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, even if Season 6 has been somewhat uneven in my eyes.

In any event, there is much happening this week!  It almost feels like getting ready to ride that final wave into shore before calling it a day.  Kicking things off is Tuesday’s episode, “What They Died For”.  Following that up on Sunday is the aptly titled, “The End”.  Rather than try to come up with a challenge for either of these 2 episodes specifically, I’m just going to open it up to any thoughts or questions any of you would like to discuss about the show as we enter the final week.  Feel free to mention the question you hope gets answered in the finale, what you think the ultimate fate a specific character might be, who you think is going to be Jacob’s replacement, or what your feelings are on the show’s run overall.  It’s wide open!

Also, I typically try to shy away from the challenge comments, but this week, I’ll dive in as soon as any of you do.  I’d love to get a discussion going in this final week.

Tomorrow I’ll post on my interLOST blogging experience, and what’s next for the blog after LOST heads off into the sunset.  Late Wednesday night/early Thursday I’ll have my analysis of “What They Died For”.  On Friday, I’ll share with you what I saw in the “Times Talks Live” movie theater experience.  I’ll take a break on Saturday, but then I’ll be back on Sunday with an open discussion thread for the finale, and perhaps something special to share with you.  And of course, next week I’ll analyze the finale, and quite possibly, provide initial thoughts of the series as a whole and how the ending stacked up with the journey.

I hope you’ll stop by often this week, and enjoy LOST Finale Week!

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4 responses

17 05 2010
DDay

Pablo-

I couldn’t agree more with you. Losing LOST is like losing a friend. I am going to miss it. I have been invested in this story for six years and in my opinion, it’s been the greatest show in TV history. I’ve enjoyed your blog immensely over the last year or so. Thanks for taking the time to produce it.

As for the final 3.5 hours of LOST, I have always felt this will come down to Jack and Sawyer occupying Jacob and Smokey’s roles. I think Sawyer will seal his fate saving Kate somehow. This would seem like a predictable, melodramatic ending so I am probably wrong but we’ll see. I think I read somewhere that Juliet comes back tomorrow night- perhaps over the cup of coffee with Sawyer. Perhaps Sawyer does end up getting off the island- or finding happiness in the flash sideways? Jack is saying he wants to stay. Sawyer is saying he wants to leave. I won’t be surprised if somehow the outcome is reversed.

As far as unanswered questions go, I want to know about the damn food drop. I think your “black box” explanation is as good as any. I also think it could be Ben with an easy answer too. The others knew that people had crashed, sent Ethan out to infiltrate and make a list, etc. They obviously had control of Dharma’s resources. Maybe they had a single engine plane that could traverse the island but nothing else? I tend to think once the producers determined when the end was going to happen, the Dharma story line was shuttled. I could see Hurley mentioning the drop and Ben saying. “It was us. Who else would it be?”

As this ends, I am thinking of who my favorite character has been. I’ve always enjoyed Sawyer. Jack has seen his ups and downs- but the hero role was tough to sustain. In the end, I think Linus has been the most interesting character over the years.

As for my favorite episode, either the season one finale or “Through the Looking Glass” stand out. The season five finale was incredible too. I also enjoyed the episode where Hurley got the bus running and we heard “Shambala” by Three Dog Night. My least favorite LOST episode was either the “Expose” throwaway or the episode with Jack in Thailand explaining his tattoos.

If you have something to say this week, I’ll pop in to discuss…

Thanks again for your efforts.

17 05 2010
hablodepablo

Hey DDay, thanks again for stopping by and commenting. You know, I’ve been curious for the longest time…how did you find this blog? I’ve intentionally done zero marketing of the site, so I consistently wonder how someone like you came across it. If you could share that, I’d appreciate it.

With respect to the final week of the show, I’m actually curious as to how the Jack/Kate/Sawyer triangle plays out, only because I expect that it will be done in an extremely dramatic and emotionally poignant way. I still think that MIB will use the fact that he can harm Kate directly, but not Sawyer or Jack, as a way to pit them against each other and possibly kill one another.

The “imagine a box” theory almost has to come into play, IMHO, because if it doesn’t, I think it’s a huge letdown. Plus, I think there are instances in which certain things happened on the island that people could look back on and say, “Oh! That’s a “box” moment!” I think that may be the device they use to have us go back and rewatch old episodes.

Of course, I’m hoping that the explanation for the flash-sideways is a real humdinger. I’ve been discussing it with my colleagues at work more and more, and I’ve come to the conclusion that if the writers willingly took us on this side journey, in which they knew they’d receive backlash, then they must believe that it’s 100% worth the trip. I theorize that they had some fantastic finish in store for us in the finale, and they have simply worked backwards from there. As a result, they decided to use the flash-sideways to make that finale moment that much more special and impactful.

As far as a favorite character, I’ve always been a big John Locke fan. In fact, it’s highly disappointing that he’s remained dead all of this time, and most of my theorizing around his character is about me looking for any way in which the old character could resurface. It looks more and more like a reach that he’ll return with every passing episode, but I can’t imagine that Walt’s dream or sideways-Locke’s statement about his situation were throw-aways. I’m most interested in what the writers have as a final resolution to his character.

As far as a favorite episode, I agree with your thoughts around the Season 3 and Season 5 finales. That was some good TV. As far as a non-season ender, I’d go with “The Man From Tallahassee”, where we saw Locke get pushed out of the window, and Ben and Locke had some fantastic scenes together. The Hurley bus episode (“Tricia Tanaka Is Dead” if I remember correctly), is also one of my favorites. It definitely helped create that sense of family with the characters.

My least favorite episode is a no-brainer, and that’s “Stranger in a Strange Land”, the Jack tatoo episode you mentioned.

I can’t wait for Tuesday night…this week is going to be a fun run of LOST events…

18 05 2010
DDay

Pablo,

I found your blog by googling “Lost Blogs” and digging aroung Lostpedia, Approaching Lost, DarkUFO and other sites. I never spent a lot of time looking at LOST on line. One day I had some time and I went for it. I remember seeing InterLOST coming up like 4th or 5th in the list. I liked your blog’s layout and your writing style was an easy read along with your straightforward analysis. I stayed. It was easy for me. Thanks for letting me hang.

Locke has been a great character. So has Desmond. I have been waiting too for real Locke to resurrect. It looks unlikely now but your thinking was spot on anyway.

The “Stranger in a Strange Land” episode has the distinction of being the catalyst for deciding to end the series. That episode was written and directed by someone else and was a result of beginning to look more deeply into the characters instead of the story line- because they began to fear the “Gilligan’s Island” effect. The episode was so poorly received that they decided to commit to the story and its end.

Can’t wait for tonight. Whatta LOST week. And a real LOST weekend.

19 05 2010
DDay

“What They Died For” put us all right back on track for the finale. It was great to see the old Ben bounce back to his rotten form. I think he’s playing Smokey though- and that he owed Widmore- no matter what the situation was. Ben was redeemed ealrier and I think whether Flocke or Ben killed Widmore was irrelevant. He was going down. Ben got his revenge for Alex.

Now, as for the Jack as Jacob transition, I’m not buying it. “In Across the Sea” Jacob’s “mother” brought him to within sight of the light and converted him with wine- and not water- and said- “now you’re like me”. The difference here is MIB. The rules say Jacob can’t kill MIB, so logic dictates if Jack is now like Jacob, he also can’t kill MIB. Jacob made it clear he wants MIB dead. I think he’s playing Jack. Hurley said “I’m just glad it wasn’t me.” which means I’m willing to bet that Hurley ultimately gets the job.

If you notice how MIB did in Zoe- but slicing her throat- and you consider Jack in the flashsideways with the cut on his neck, I wonder if there’s a connection? I believe there is and that Jack will die in the finale- from a wound to the neck.

Desmond is acting as the failsafe in the flash sideways. I think they’re doing what they’re doing because Locke was successful in sinking the island and killing everyone. It’s being reversed.

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