May 23: the second anniversary of the “Lost” series finale.
On this day in 2011, I wrote up my feelings about “Lost” and its place in my television-loving heart. Those feelings haven’t changed, though the year has.
The short version: Since “Lost” ended, I just don’t care as much about television anymore.
The long version is below.
365 days ago, “Lost” came to a thrilling end. 364 days ago, the haters took over the conversation and never let go. Such is life here on the one year anniversary of the “Lost” series finale –- a series which not only ranks as one of my favorites ever, but was also partially responsible for creating this very blog. As it turns out, multi-paragraph emails sent to friends as postmortems for weekly episodes are unpractical for everyone involved.
No naval gazing about the origins of 42 Inch Television — let’s save that story for season 10 — but just a couple of hundred words about “Lost” one year later. How do I feel about the finale, which I dubbed “perfectly perfect,” and the series, on this anniversary? Not surprisingly, about the same. While there are still some unavoidable issues about the final season of “Lost” — the flash-sideways conceit (never thought I’d type that phrase again) being one, because of its ultimate bait-and-switch end — the finale was satisfying, emotional and honest to the characters. Not every mystery was resolved — though many more than you might think actually were — but they didn’t necessarily have to be solved. Lost was always about its characters; in this case, the parts were greater than the sum of the whole.
Since “The End” ended, fans have distanced themselves from the series — a bit of “the emperor has no clothes” schadenfreude made all the easier by Damon Lindelof’s post-finale Twitter antics. (In short: he’s kinda acted like a brat, though whether he means to or not is up for debate; after all, much subtlety gets lost in the 140-character translation. Nyuck.) But maybe that was the point. “Lost” was always about passion — it’s what made the show a hit after the first season — and that fans have enough passion for the show to still hold a grudge says something. As much as I love “Mad Men” and “Parks and Recreation,” I don’t feel a connection to them like I did with “Lost”; I don’t sit up late into the night going on the “Mad Men” version of Lostpedia — is there such a thing? — hoping to figure out some previously unrealized bit of mystery. (Why was Betty shooting at those birds?) To put it bluntly: I just don’t care. The great television shows currently populating the spectrum might be better than Lost as complete series, but they aren’t as all-encompassing.
In the end, that was what made “Lost” so special to me: I cared. Most important, love it or hate it, you cared. One year later, that passion might be what I miss most. Well, that and Michael Emerson.