Why I Love LOSTMonday, February 01, 2010
The Self-Aware Parent
It's finally back. Lost has returned for its sixth and final season and the diehard fans, myself included, are more than ready to dive back into the mystery.
In the interest of full disclosure I have to admit that I wasn't in it from the beginning. There was a time when I didn't believe the hype.
But on a vacation with my husband a few years ago we decided to bring Season 1 of Lost. It all started with that plane crash - that ridiculously realistic plane crash. Characters were introduced as they aimlessly walked the beach wondering where they were and why they were alive.
This has been the enduring question for the last five seasons. And really, isn't this the question of all people? Who am I? Why am I here? What is the purpose? That is the theme of Lost and that's what keeps me coming back.
It's no surprise that I fell in love with a character named John Locke. Not because of his good looks, but because of his strong faith. Locke believes that there is a destiny to fulfill, a reason for the group, a higher purpose for the whole thing. He is a layered character and his choices are not always good (sometimes they are downright disturbing), but I am inevitably drawn to him.
Locke is my favorite, but Jack is not far behind. Jack is a man of science, and he uses his mind to lead and solve problems. Jack is a deeply tortured character - his lack of belief keeps him out of his heart and inside his head which demonstrates his smarts, but keeps him from truly understanding people or having substantial relationships.
Locke and Jack have continually battled for leadership and their sharp contrast results in the castaways choosing sides. If they could just integrate each other's beliefs, trust inner wisdom while knowing the value of the mind, it would result in a leader that was really worth following. But I know, it's a show, so I digress…
Lost is about puzzles, time travel, relationships, and good vs. evil with an occasional smoke monster or polar bear thrown in. It would be difficult to write about every aspect or even discuss every aspect of this show. Viewers are constantly challenged to get their arms around the ever expanding details.
But that's what I love. I don't watch much television, but when I do, it's usually something that doesn't require work. It's an old episode of Friends, an occasional reality show or my nightly Daily Show fix. As a mother of three my mind is already mushy at the end of the day. I usually don't have the stamina to take on anything difficult.
But I am willing to work for Lost. I am ready to watch with my TiVo remote close by so I can pause and rewind when necessary (to catch clues that Lost fans refer to as "easter eggs"). I am ready to have long discussions with my husband about the meaning of people, their choices, and what that big foot on the island actually represents.
I am ready to bond with people I hardly know about these complex characters, especially Jacob, who finally made an appearance last season. I feel like we are talking about something greater than a show. It stretches us to look at what we believe and what we think is important. It asks us to be open minded, forgiving, and sometimes just suspend what we might otherwise believe for an hour.
I am ready to feel powerful emotion, like when Charlie knowingly gave up his life, or when Desmond and Penny were finally reunited (the episode with Desmond called The Constant is still my favorite), and when Juliet so eloquently expresses her love for Sawyer (otherwise known as LaFleur) as she falls down that fateful hole.
Lost makes me cry and it makes me think. It has tested my patience and surprised me. It has opened up conversations about purpose, destiny and the meaning of life. In a media world based on shallow reality characters who want instant fame for no reason, Lost's depth is a breath of fresh air.
So I am ready to get back to work. I am ready to revisit those questions about faith and science and bring all the pieces back together. I am ready to expand my thinking and hopefully get some answers.
Not to mention that my husband has been traveling for almost a week so my mushy parenting brain is in desperate need of a workout.
Are you excited for Lost, too? Please post a comment and tell us why.