Monday, May 24, 2010

LOST S6: E17 & E18 FINALE- 'The End'

...For a moment the unearthly stillness of the desert enveloped us...
Then Newman said, "My father once told me a story I always think of, when the going gets rough and things look hopeless. It's about Destiny….
Destiny came down to an island, centuries ago, and summoned three of the inhabitants before him. 'What would you do,' asked Destiny, 'if I told you that tomorrow this island will be completely inundated by an immense tidal wave?'' The first man, who was a cynic, said, 'Why, I would eat, drink, carouse and make love all night long!' The second man, who was a mystic, said, 'I would go to the sacred grove with my loved ones and make sacrifices to the gods and pray without ceasing.' And the third man, who loved reason, thought for a while, confused and troubled, and said, 'Why, I would assemble our wisest men and begin at once to study how to live under water.' "
I, too, never forgot that story. When our cause seems doomed and the future LOST, when despair becomes unbearable and the heart is on the edge of breaking, let men summon hope and honor and high resolve in yet one more stubborn affirmation: Come, let us assemble our wisest men and begin at once to think, to study, to try to learn – even to learn, if we must, how to live under water."

-Leo Rosten, Captain Newman, M.D.

Legen... wait for it... dary. From the music to the aerial shots to the battle in the rain to everything coming full circle with Jack lying down and closing his eyes in the same spot he woke up and opened his eyes in the very first scene of the very first episode... loved it. I suppose I will have to find something new to obsess over and blog about now. Sigh. Or get a life.

Little satisfying acknowledgments and reveals:

-LockeNess referring to Jack as the obvious choice, because that is what we were all thinking
-Kate snickering at the name Christian Shephard-Island Claire saying she is crazy
-Juliet is Jack's baby mama as hoped/confirmed (though I guess the little guy doesn't actually exist, sad.)
-The whole story has been a combination of elements from different mythologies and religions, and I love that it remained generic to the end- like Christian standing in front of a stained glass window with icons from several theologies

Things that choked me up:

Okay, so I pretty much started getting emotional from the moment the show began and the music played, but here are some specific times:

-Every time someone had a flashback sequence and finally remembered
-Charlie's face watching Claire from the stage-Kate helping Claire give birth to Aaron, again
-Sawyer whispering, I've got you, to Juliet
-Jack saying to Desmond I'll see you in another life, brother
-Jack's conversation with Christian in the end

Things that made me smile like a fool:

-All the people who remember smiling like idiots at the people who don't remember yet (Hurley at Charlie, the Kwons at Sawyer, Kate with Jack...)
-The joyous reunions that came with two people remembering at once (Sayid & Shannon, Sun & Jin, Sawyer & Juliet, Kate & Claire...)
-Boone already being in the know and he and Hurley giving Shannon & Sayid a little more time
-Ben's face to Hurley when he finally got to be the chosen one
-Jack & Kate's epic kiss on the cliff
-The symbolism of them protecting the Light on the island and then walking into the Light in the end

Favorite lines:

-Sawyer asking Jack what the Burning Bush had to say for itself (te he)
-Kate to Jack- you didn't ruin anything, nothing is irreversible... Hurley, this would be so sweet if we weren't all about to die
-When Desmond was going down the hole and said he would go where the light was brightest, all I could think was, second star to the right and straight on til morning! (From Peter Pan)
-Miles- I don't believe in a lot of things, but I do believe in duct tape
-Charlie- I was shot by a fat man

From the very first season, fans clamored around the theory that the island was Purgatory, and the writers/producers promptly shot that down. It was very clever that the twist is that its actually the Flash-Sideways world that is, maybe not Purgatory, per se, more like Limbo, or a literal passage to the light, for the dead to move on. It's a very nice idea that you create a perfect world to find those that matter most to you so that you can remember and let go and then move on together. The ending, with them all hugging it out in the church, which Kirsten aptly named, The Titanic Moment (as in the final scene of Titanic when Rose walks up the stairs and everyone (especially Jack- what a great name!) is there) was also wonderful. Everyone there but those who weren't quite ready to move on yet- Ben, Miles, Charlotte, Daniel... (and those spirits who are apparently trapped forever on the island like Michael?)

For several weeks now I have been suspicious of the to-good-to-be-true nature of the sideways world, feeling like it was some kind of Matrix. Then last week Desmond had me confused when he said that he was there to help them, let go. I was so caught up in it all that the realization of what was really happening didn't hit completely hit me until Jack walked into the Church and looked at the casket and I knew Christian wouldn't be in there because they were all dead. I had an eye-popping, jaw-dropping, make-my-friends-pause-so-I-could-get-a-grip-and-explain moment.

At first when it ended, feeling extremely overwhelmed, I felt like there was a lack of continuity with them all being dead since there were a few in the Island time, aka, Real Time, that were still alive. The more I think about it the more perfect it is though. They really did go through all of that and successfully saved the island and fulfilled their destiny. Those that died seem to have sort of, waited for those who lived so they could all move on together. Hurley and Ben had their moment of -you were a good were a good first, so they really must have cared for the island together for a time. For how long? It hardly matters, because as Christian said, this place they created has no place and no time- they created what was familiar and contemporary to them so that they could all find each other and be together. Though they didn't confirm it, and that's okay, its nice to wistfully think that Desmond got back to his Penny, that Kate and Claire stayed friends and lived a full life loving Aaron, and that maybe Sawyer and Miles did become cop partners! So when Kate said to Jack, I've missed you so much, it really must have been a while for her since she lived years longer than him. (And who knows about Richard.) Its also fun to think of Hurley finding his groove as the new Jacob. He would be a friendly face to meet, with Ben-as-the-new-Richard being the intimidating one. What a pair. I wonder who Hurley chose as his replacement...

Genius. Fulfilling yet lingering. I'll miss it and I want more, but I agree that it was time for it to end. The whole episode answered enough, but was still beautifully ambiguous, which is fitting, because all of LOST has been one exquisitely mysterious journey. C'est la vie.


George Parker Mann said...

What to say. When I realized what was probably going on with LA-verse I was a touch disappointed. I had still hoped there would be some sort of crossover. I guess in the end the nuke only served as a way to time travel, the sunken island in that one episode only being a red herring. I'm okay with the idea of an after-life like that and even spending so much time on it (felt almost big fish-ish at the end) but it came at a slight cost. They brought up sooo much in the last little while that I really needed a touch more. A slightly less vague explanation of the light, a clear idea as to what Smoky would do off the island, why his mother wouldn't just let him leave and avoid all this from the beginning, anything.

The big reveal, however, was focused on Limbo, which let me down a little. With so much spirit-connection in the show, limbo was a good end, and reconnecting with friends was satisfying because few ensemble stories can allow for that, It just felt like they were distracting us a little from the rest. I think introducing some of this season's reveals a little earlier in the series would have alleviated this slight anti-climax.

Despite all of this, it was still very enjoyable. I'm glad that Ben reverting to evil last week was just a front (pretty much anybody would have killed the two he killed) to get close. If it wasn't a front he would have stolen the magic water bottle and tried to kill Hurley at the end. I'm glad both Jack and Hurley got to be the new Jacob. I'm glad the pilot survived. So overall, it was a very enjoyable finale, but, like most finales, could have given me a tiny bit more.

SisterPresidentMann said...

OK, as a non LOST watcher, now that it's over, how many hours of my life would I have to dedicate to a marathon? And is there enough light butter popcorn in the world to last through it?
More importantly, do you have to be under 35 to "get" it?