LOST Theories - DarkUFO

Lost has never been coy about their influences, practically beating us over the head in some cases with novels placed as Easter Eggs. At this point in the story, about 98% revealed to the general public, the texts most similar to Lost are Stephen King's The Stand (in fact, a lot of Stephen King's work), and what is arguably the greatest fiction novel ever written, The Bible; this last season, and what we've been led to believe is the overarching mythology, owes a lot to F. Paul Wilson's The Keep series. Fine, well, and good.

There's no plagiarism involved here, just hints toward what the writers may have read and thought of during the show's development.
The trick to "figuring out Lost" is in knowing how the writing process works: it doesn't. Not conventionally; you spitball, you write, you rewrite, you throw out what you just wrote because you're convinced it's shit, you procrastinate, an idea comes to you in the middle of doing something else, and you repeat steps one through six until someone you trust says you're done. What I'm getting at is, Lost is no different from another piece of writing at the end of the day: you don't know you're done, until you're done. And even then...
Even with the influences figured out, you can't predict where a writer's mind will go. And you sure as hell can't guarantee everyone will like it.

All of this being said, I can finally get to my point: I hate Season Six so far, and the writing has brought me perilously close to considering Lost ruined as a whole. This was supposed to be eighteen hours of epic finale perfection, ("ANSWERS ARE COMING," right ABC?) and instead we received substitute teachers, unnecessarily repeated storylines, cameos that cheapened characters, and subplots that went nowhere.

The big gimmick this season has been the introduction of the Alternate Timeline that may, or may not, exist as a consequence of Jughead's detonation in the fifth season finale. Fans speculate that this AU (alternate universe) is the "second life" granted to the passengers of 815 for fulfilling some as-yet-unknown condition in the OT (original timeline). My issues with it are listed below:

-I get the dead character cameos, I really do. They're a nod to the cast members themselves, and it's a nice gesture to the fans who've been with Lost through the entire ride. I get it; it doesn't mean I have to like it. In my opinion, it cheapens the story as a whole. "The sacrifice the Island demanded," made of Boone? That was a big moment in Season One: it advanced the mythology, it engendered mistrust between Jack and Locke, and it was the death of an innocent main character. There was weight. It's the stuff Must See TV is made of. Instead? Gone. "Oh, well, Boone gets a happy ending in another universe." The same goes for Charlie and everyone else. I hate it.

-The whole "Let's show what their life would have been like if they hadn't crashed" thing. I don't fucking care, dude. Locke becomes a substitute teacher, Rose and Bernard still have a happy marriage, Sawyer's a cop. BFD. Sure, I'm invested in the characters, and this might be all some form of an extended happy ending for the series, but still, the story of Lost has not led me to want to see a single frame of the AU. It's lazy, it's uninteresting, and most importantly, it's patronizing. A friend of mine, a PhD in Comparative Literature at Northwestern U, once said, "Fuck the reader. Good writers don't write for the reader. Dan Brown writes for the reader." I take that to heart, and it's what I loved about Lost's first five seasons. "You don't know what the Casimir Effect is? Well, fuck you. You didn't catch that reference to Aldous Huxley's "Island" with the "Pala Ferry?" Fuck. You." I respected their in-jokes and silent nudging for audiences to open a book, or at least research good writing through Google.

-Subplots that went nowhere.
1) Let's be Frank - okay, we're Frank now. As Frank, we've spent our entire time on Lost since our introduction (at almost the exact midpoint - the second episode of the fourth season) as comic relief. We've raised a few questions about our background, sure, but nothing the viewers have been too invested in. We're a drunk, but "a hell of a pilot." That's all you need to know. Then, all of a sudden, we might be "a Candidate?" Surely this will bring depth to our middling character, and we'll be promoted from occasional one-liner guy to audiences-interested-in-our-future guy? No, instead we keep chewing the scenery, throw around a sarcastic comment ("Weirdest damn funeral I've ever been to!") every two episodes, and follow around the similarly-wasted Ilana until we're bashed to death by a submarine door in an easily-forgotten death. Frank was a waste of minutes that could have been better spent on other characters. What I would have done? I thought you'd never ask, Frank. I would have killed you much earlier on, but I would have given the death a weight to bring to the story. Scene: LA X, just before "Locke" knocks out Alpert. Locke walks out of the temple after "smoking" Bram (speaking of lazily, lame, written characters), and walks towards Sun. You stand in front of her and point a gun (Richard shouts, "Wait!"), and growl a protective, "You're going to have to get through -" Locke keeps walking, you shoot - nothing happens! - and Locke casually breaks your neck. At this, the entire group of Others gathered point their guns at Locke. Richard tells everyone not to shoot again, and the scene plays out as written. ("Out of those chains," punch, "Very disappointed," exit.) Better? Much. Yeah, it's a bigger tip-off that Locke had nothing but bad intentions, and destroys the "maybe the Smoke Monster is Good" thing (no one really believed, with Season Six being written the was it was, that Locke was anything but evil anyways), but it also introduces the question, "Maybe Locke CAN kill candidates - wasn't Frank one?"

2) Ilana was the introduction of an additional strong female character. Yeah, she was a Deus Ex Machina, but she was a compelling one. Remember when she jumped Sayid? And was a Bounty Hunter? And, and, it referenced loose-end clusterfuck The Economist? Cool enough, but then she had a hidden agenda? And knew about The Statue? Going into Season Six, I wanted to learn so much about Ilana. I wanted to take her out to dinner, and hold her hand, and watch her Flashbacks (she knew Jacob?!), and cared if she lived or died. Then... nothing. Her best scene in her entire time on the series showcased someone else's acting (the Ben "no one will have me" scene). It got to the point where the writers knew no one cared about her, and they didn't have the airtime to develop her as a backstory, so they just blew her up without warning to give viewers the "death could happen at any moment" thing. Yawn. C- for effort.

3) Claire. Fuck, Claire could have been so cool. Instead, she flip flops, and deals with the lackadaisical scenes she's given. The killing Kate subplot made no sense, and just resulted in wasted screen time that could have been better used. What would have been cool? A Claire-centric episode towards the end of the season, in place of "The Last Recruit" and the unnecessarily clusterfucky storyline therein. Instead of two separate scenes in the AU and OT showing the EXACT same thing (Claire and Jack meeting after finding out they're related), we get what happened to Claire when she left with Christian Shepherd in Season Four (leading to MiB explaining some island mysteries - this would have been the perfect time to explain what The Whispers were). The writers did NOTHING productive with a character who was a goldmine of potential, and viewers were invested in.

4) Dogen, and The Temple: enough said. I can go into detail in Part 2, which I'll write after the Finale airs.

I am expecting a lot from the upcoming final four hours. Do I want all my questions answered? No. Do I expect every question pertinent to the mythology answered? No, but a few would be nice. The Whispers answer broke my heart, because it went against something the writers had been saying since Season One - that the island was not purgatory - and I now know the joke that Adam and Eve are Vincent and Kate is possible, or that the final scene could be Jack waking up, again, to restart the loop all over (a la The Dark Tower - more Stephen King). I want Adam and Eve answered, and I want it to prove time-travelling was planned from the beginning (no cheating) like you said it would. The writers have always said they had "an idea" of the ending from the beginning, and I want the story to organically get to that same ending. Unfortunately, Lost has a raging hard-on for the Deus Ex Machina, and I fully expect the series final scenes to echo The Matrix Reloaded/Revolutions with an "Architect" of sorts.

What do I hope the ending will be, exactly?
Everything we've wanted answered, and been teased, in one fell, dizzyingly creative, swoop: the DeGroots, the volcano, Annie, who built The Statue (and Ruins, and Donkey Wheel), Walt, Aaron, Ji Yeon, the Outrigger chase while flashing through time, the supply drop, who is Eloise Hawking... these are all the relevant mysteries that should be answered.

My theoretical perfect ending (adhering to the Alternate Universe-thing):
Ben "redeems" himself, then dies. Miles dies (the story hasn't really given me any reason to care for his character). Kate, Sawyer, Jack, and Hurley paddle across the ocean in an outrigger, until they see another one; they start shooting. The other outrigger (Season Five) shoots back; Juliet kills Sawyer. Locke kills Alpert, who then reunites with his wife. Jack is given the choice between saving Kate and Hurley, or killing Locke. He saves Kate and Hurley, but Locke somehow kills them anyways. Jack kills Locke. Jack is the last Candidate standing, and becomes the Island's new protector. He's led to the volcano by the remaining Others, and finds a group consisting of Hawking, the DeGroots, a few original island inhabitants, and grown-up versions of Annie, Aaron, and Ji Yeon. Hawking explains that they've been chosen as demi-Gods, using the Island as an experiment with humanity. Humanity is represented by champions - each given one of a specific set of numbers. (If you're still reading, you know which numbers.) The experiment is controlled, and each result has always been the same - each person, each number, remains the same. No one changes, and a change is needed to have humanity continue past this point in time. Jack almost changed, through his time on the Island and actions, but it just wasn't good enough. The experiment starts over, but Jack is given some information and we're led to believe as an audience that this time, he'll succeed.
I have a more detailed, less swiss-cheesed plot, ending in mind, but I've already done 2000-something words here. It's very Dark Tower, but is that a problem? I loved the ending of Dark Tower, it went perfectly with the rest of the series. That's all I really want of Lost in its ending, to live up to the standard it's set so far.

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