I have been watching Lost obsessively since the series premiered, and one of my great worries has been that there will never be a satisfying conclusion. That’s what happened with the X-Files — the creators of the show didn’t know how long it would last, so they just stretched it out until they didn’t get renewed, and the storyline eventually fell apart. When I started watching the show, “conspiracy” episodes were my favorite, but by the end, the “moster of the week” episodes and funny episodes were the only ones I really loved. (I still contend that Humbug is one of the greatest hours of TV ever.)
Anyway, I was a bit disappointed to read that the creators of Lost have given up the pretense that they’ll wrap have to wrap things up cleanly. Here’s series creator Damon Lindelof:
How can you ever possibly think that ‘Lost’ will end in a satisfying way? Carlton and I can almost guarantee you that it will not.
If they don’t believe the show can end in a satisfying way, what incentive do they have to even create a compelling or sensible arc for the show? From day one I’ve worried that the loose ends would get out of control on the show, and it sure looks like the creators just don’t care. As long as they retain their viewers from week to week and keep getting renewed, they’re successful.
What does this mean for Lost viewers? That you shouldn’t worry about anything but week-to-week quality. If the show is good, keep watching. If it gets stale, move on to greener pastures. It’s not as though there’s going to be anything to stick around for.