“There are no shortcuts, no do-overs. What happened, happened. Trust me, I know. All of this matters.”- Jack
And they “lived” happily ever after….
I’m glad I waited a few days to write about the finale because I’ve turned out liking it a whole lot more the more I thought about it and after watching most of it a second time. I feel so dumb for not guessing that an eye closing would be the last shot. It only makes sense. The show started that way, and has used “the eye opening” theme all throughout the show. So I applaud them for the cyclicality and pattern that they used and followed. This was somewhat like Avatar, one of the first shots was a human eye opening and the very last shot was a Na’vi’s eye opening. But this is Lost blog, not Avatar blog.
Now I’ve only read half of the Chronicles of Narnia series but I’m pretty sure Lost just stole some of their ending from the Narnia series. Go research it and read some summaries for yourself, but I believe in the last book at some point they die and are in Narnia and are told they are now dead and that Narnia is their afterlife. All the other times they went to Narnia were real, just the last time it was a different Narnia…maybe. The point that makes this more like the Narnia series is that every character (well, nearly all characters) are together in the end, in the afterlife. Like I said, I don’t know this for sure. This blog encourages you to find answers for yourself.
In the end, everyone was right, we may not have gotten everything answered, but I don’t really care. So what if I don’t know:
· What MIB’s name was, if he even had one? (Kind of cool to have an unnamed bad guy, something ominous about that)
· Where the Dharma food drop came from in season 2?
· Who built everything on the island? (i.e. Taweret statue, ruins, etc.)
· Why Walt was special? (i.e. him summoning birds)
· Why only some people were going to enter the afterlife at a certain time?
· Why and how Eloise Hawking was so knowledgeable?
· How Jacob could leave the Island?
· Why the Island has powers to heal and why it was always moving?
· Why Jack and Ben got sick on the Island (appendicitis and a cancerous spinal tumor respectively) while it heals everyone else?
· Who did we see in Jacob’s cabin when Ben first took Locke there and who was in it with Christian Shepherd in season 4 when Hurley looked in the window. And what the significance of the ash was around the cabin? (We know the smoke monster can’t cross ash, but had he been trapped in the cabin at one point, or kept out of it?)
· What was that cork at the bottom Desmond moved over a volcanic like crater and why when he moved it, it made water stop flowing from another place onto it? (see, I told yall there was a volcano, I’m counting it. Also, I’m told the cork had Cuneiform on it.)
· How will Richard assimilate into the modern world and live there for the rest of his life? (sounds like a good 80’s sitcom idea)
· How does Frank explain where the plane has been the past like two weeks, where all the passengers went, and how he got new passengers?
· The world would have been looking for the plane. Kate cannot leave the state, much less the country, as we saw in her flash-forward because of her trial results. How will she explain where she went? Will she be thrown in jail for breaking her parole?
· Why was the Island sunken in the Flash-Sideways?
While I wish some of those would have been answered, I don’t care that much. The show was a character study filled with mythology, not a mythology tale with characters interspersed in there. Lost was at its core or a character study, and the viewer must recognize that if they are to understand and be pleased with the show. The ending itself serves testament that the show was all about the characters and their relationships. I could not help but think of the famous quote from It’s a Wonderful Life in the final scene.
“No Man is a Failure who has Friends.” - It’s a Wonderful Life.
Also, C.S. Lewis says “Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art. It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.”
We cannot get too frustrated about the unsolved mysteries of the show, after all we live in a world full of mystery, we are just so used to not getting the answers that we accept things they way they are. Just like when “Mother” said to Jacob and MIB’s real mom, “every question will simply lead to another question.” That’s true in our world. If you believe in the Big Bang then what was there before the Big Bang for things to clash into each other. If you believe in Creation account of the Bible it says “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.” (Genesis 1:1-3). Then the creation account follows, the whole 7 day story. What was here before the creation account? When was it made? On to more trivial questions: Why is the sky blue? What’s in Area 51? Who built Stonehenge? What killed King Tut? (maybe the Smoke Monster?) Is Elvis still alive? Who is Titus? (That’s a shout out to my HUG summer 2009 group.) How does cable work? (that’s a shout out to a long, on-going conversation between me and Sam Barker) We have all of these conspiracies, myths and a few legitimate questions that we will never know the answer to. This show is the same.
I’m cool with not getting answers or not understanding everything because usually when you explain something too much it ruins it. Their needs to be enough for you to believe it, but not fully understand it. Season 6 brought in a lot of new things that just didn’t get explained in the least bit. Like the source, the fountain in the temple and Claire and Sayid being “claimed” or zombified. It was a little unfortunate that we didn’t get to understand these better, especially when they were brought into the game so late.
I am a little confused about the whole source thing. Why did unplugging the hole make water stop flowing into it? Why did it turn the MIB into a Smoke Monster and not Desmond or Jack? The idea I subscribe to is that Desmond was obviously immune to it because he has a high tolerance to electromagnetism and Jack was immune to it because it was off when he was in it and maybe it didn’t fully come back on while he was laying in the edge of the pool and/or he still had “Island protector powers.”
I also was not aware that the light could go out and come back on. They made such a big deal that” if it goes out there, then it goes out everywhere and we are all in trouble.” What happened in the real world during the time the light was out? Was the whole world shaking like it was on the Island? I don’t think so, but still, why was it such a big deal for the light not to go out.
We also never learned why it was so bad for the Smoke Monster to leave the Island? Unless he was planning on going Smokey and conducting a mass, world-wide genocide, it seems like he just wanted to see the world. However, I guess by turning the light out so he could leave, he could no longer go Smoke form to kill people. We never really knew why he could not leave. Either way, it was rather tragic, the one thing he wanted to do in life, his whole 2,000 year-ish lifetime, he never got to do. If there is one thing we can learn from this, it is to never give up on your dreams. This guy had dedication. Also, you should never get near to cliffs. Honestly, he had Locke’s body and memory and he knows the show is one big pattern, he should have known he was going to get kicked off and paralyzed. I choose to believe he was paralyzed in the end, had he survived, it only seems fitting.
I know at one point I did not think I was going to like Hurley being the Island Protector, but when it happened I was cool with it. It seemed right then. I did like how Jack was it long enough to accomplish something. Why didn’t Jack recite the incantation over the water? Wasn’t that necessary? Once again, this is what I choose to believe. Earlier this season Richard said if Jacob touched you it was a gift. So, Jack gave Hurley water, it was a gift, a symbolic gesture. Passing the torch if you will. The real transfer of power came when he touched Hurley and said, “Now, you like me.” Risky move for Hurley trusting Ben, even until last episode he was still wanting to run the Island, but even in the afterlife it seems like no foul play had been done by him on Hurley. So I guess it worked out and Ben was able to really be good.
Also, big news alert here. We interrupt your regularly scheduled blog post to bring you this breaking announcement Lost is not completely over! When the final series DVD is released there is going to be 14 minutes showing the time of Hurley and Ben reigning on the Island. Read more about it here.
I liked that Richard was now shown aging. That was pretty cool. I guess he can do that because the one who gave him immortality is dead, no longer a binding contract. And what do you know, Lapidus somehow survived, MIRACLE! In general I was surprised at how many people survived in the finale episode. I really thought nearly everyone would die. Yes, a lot of people did die, but a lot more people made it than I thought would. Is it a little funny that Locke has been shown to be dead, in some form or another in every season finale since season 3. Season 3: closed coffin that we would later learn was Locke’s. Season 4: we learn it was Locke in the coffin. Season 5: we see his dead body dumped out of a cargo bin on the beach. Season 6: Smoke-Locke is killed while in Locke form.
In the end, the finale further expounded and showed where they believed things were pertaining to free-will. Jack chose to be Jacob and Kate also told him that nothing was irreversible (talking about their relationship that had fallen apart, but in the end she showed her true colors for him). Speaking of which, the whole love triangle, that became a quadrangle, was a big deal earlier in the series, it appeared that they forgot about it this whole season until the final episode. However, I guess that makes sense, the world needed saving, it was more important than Kate’s fickle heart.
Speaking of Kate, when she shot Smoke Locke I was a little disappointed, I didn’t want her to be the hero. I actually yelled I was angry, me and the person I watched it with, both yelled I think. However, thankfully Jack really finished him off. Also, I was glad that Kate’s realization moment was Aaron’s birth, I think that spoke volumes. (P.S. shortest birthing ever, I guess in purgatory the rules are different.) While on that subject, I will address the end.
We finally understand the phrase, “See ya in another life brotha.” Did the producers mean for it to be that powerful when they introduced Desmond saying it at the beginning of season 2. At first we thought the whole “other life” part meant Desmond saw Jack in the real world and in the Island, two different “lives.” Remember they all said they were going to start their lives over when the plane crashed. The Island allowed them a fresh start. Now it appears that phrase really did mean another life.
Apparently people have been very confused by the ending. It’s very simple. In fact, it’s one of the few out right, explicitly given answers that we have ever gotten. Thankfully Christian Shepherd came back and was important. So yes, it was always the MIB on the Island, but Christian turned out to be important. I’m glad they made a shout out to his name. Maybe that was proof they had this ending planned from the start. I’ve read a lot of comments on internet articles and people are like, “I called it from the beginning of the series, they were in purgatory the whole time.” How dense and unobservant can people be? Here is what you need to know: THE WHOLE THING WAS REAL. IT WAS NOT ALL PURGATORY, ONLY THE FLASH-SIDEWAYS SCENES IN THIS FINAL SEASON WERE SOME SORT OF PURGATORY.
Christian said that their lives had been real, that some people died before Jack and some long after him and that the most important part of their lives was the time they spent together, and that is why they made this place in the afterlife, to be together so they could start the next journey of their “lives” together. All of this shows that yes, the whole series was real and not a waste of time. It was cool to see that they were all sitting in pews in the church almost like rows on a plane. By the way, Shannon and Sayid were true loves?! Come on he was meant for Nadia. I guess not though, even in the flash-sideways utopian-esque world, she was not with him. Maybe Shannon and Sayid were true loves. A little weird, but I’ll go with it.
It may not have helped viewers that they showed images of an empty plane crash at the end during the credits. A few days after the finale aired, ABC came out and said that they added those pictures, not the producers, to help soften the mood for the evening news. They should have known that people analyze every scene and second of this show. People were going to read too much into that. I for one just thought it was landscape shots showing us where it all started, not that they all died in the plane crash. Regardless, these pictures were not part of the story, just extras the ABC executives put in to help the psychology of the viewer.
Relating to the flash-sideways, here are a few things I choose to believe. Pierre Cheng did not look old because according to Christian Shepherd “there is no now here,” so he looked just as we would remember him from the Dharma days. The Island was at the bottom of the ocean because eventually, at some point in the course of human history it would be at the bottom of the sea. Maybe Hurley sunk it, or maybe someone long after him did, but that happened much later in human history (maybe this will be explained in the epilogue scene I mentioned and linked above). Time does not matter in the afterlife. As for David Shepherd I’m a little confused of why he existed. However, this is what I believe. The sideways world was what Christian said, a place they made together to meet up before they all moved on. So it was made to be like a near Utopia, but with just enough flaws for the people to need to find each other. Having a son must have been something important to Jack and he helped make him have a happy life. In the original timeline Jack had no one and was alone, in this world he had someone before re-finding his true love, Kate.
So with them all moving on we leave David an orphan, Ben probably wanted to look after Alex because he realizes what she meant to him (why he chose to stay a while longer) and Mrs. “Widmore” (Eloise Hawking) gets to have her son back. After knowing she killed him life, and would kill him, now she can have him to love as her son for a long time or at least until Charlotte realizes she loves him. But did she really? Did Charlotte ever really say she liked him, I don’t remember? It may have been a one-sided love. But honestly, how long did they know each other, the boat ride and like 2 weeks they spent on the Island together. Nonetheless, when he begged her 5 year old self to never come back to the Island, that was very emotionally powerful.
Before I wrap this up I want to give one more shout out to my favorite character, John Locke. I know for a while I was kind of wanting him to return, but I’m glad he didn’t. As Jack said, “There are no shortcuts, no do-overs. What happened, happened. Trust me, I know. All of this matters.” Locke was immortalized and vindicated. It was great to hear Jack tell the Smoke Monster, “You're not John Locke. You disrespect his memory by wearing his face, but you're nothing like him. Turns out he was right about most everything. I just wish I could've told him that while he was still alive.” I wish Jack would have told him he was right in the church scene. Either way, every scene between him and Locke in the Sideways world was amazing and it ended aptly with them shaking hands with Locke telling him, “We’ve been waiting for you.” Just like they always were, waiting for Jack to open his eyes to both the spiritual in the world and in the afterlife. Locke was the forerunner that laid the path for others to believe, he played his part well. He wanted to be the hero, and indirectly he was. Props to the actor, Terry O’Quinn, for playing a bad guy so well this season. At times he truly was terrifying.
It is only fitting that a show this spiritually based would end with all of them dead and “letting go” and “moving on,” two other big themes in Lost. Did anyone else notice the stained-glass window in the room where Jack and Christian talked? It had “the star and crescent of Islam, the Star of David (Judaism), the Aum (widely used as a symbol of Hinduism, but also present in Buddhism and Jainism), the Christian cross, the Dharmacakra (Buddhism) and the Yin/Yang disk (Taoism).” (That was all in quotes because I copied it from the Lostpedia article about “The End.”) This was Lost’s final shout out to all the different faiths and religions they had drawn on and alluded to throughout the entire series.
Lost has challenged the viewers for years with such eternal struggles as fate vs. free will, faith vs. science, and good vs. evil. While all of these combined made for an incredibly interesting, mysterious and compelling show, in the end, the show showed us that relationships with those around us are what make the human condition bearable. (I just really wanted to use the term “human condition” in the blog, and now that I have, I can end it.)
I thank you for following this blog. The finale was cryptic and there are many different ways to interpret it. For me, my explanations make sense for myself and maybe for you as well, but, if you have any comments or opposing views to how I interpreted the ending or anything else you want to add, please, comment below. I’d love to hear from you.
“It only ends once. Anything that happens before that is just progress.”- Jacob
Namaste, and goodluck.