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Posted at 10:50 AM ET, 05/23/2010

'Lost 5': Counting down to 'The End'

By Liz Kelly

Upated: 11:59 p.m. ET
'Lost': Instant reaction to the series finale, 'The End'


This is the end, beautiful friends. (ABC)

Well, this is it. Or almost it. After six years, fans will gather in front of TVs (and in some cases movie screens) tonight to witness the end of "Lost" in a two-and-a-half hour extended episode that promises to bring closure (and sadness and frustration and joy and every other emotion one wants to attach to a difficult goodbye) to what is, arguably, the most popular cult TV show ever. So popular, in fact, that ABC has basically handed over the entire Sunday night prime-time (and then some) line-up to the show -- sandwiching the finale between a retrospective special and a "Lost"-themed "Jimmy Kimmel Live."

Below, a few spoiler-free answers ahead of tonight's extravaganza...

1. When should I start watching?
Well, it depends on what kind of experience you're after. Die-hard fans can sit down for couch duty starting at 7 p.m. ET when ABC airs the two-hour "Lost: The Final Journey," a special guaranteed to ramp up anticipation with a look back at six years worth of show history, interviews with past and present cast members and a detailed look at season six designed to tee us all up for the main event.

If, like me, you want to go into the finale without already feeling emotionally drained by a two-hour retrospective, you may want to hold off on turning on the TV until 9 p.m. on the dot for the beginning of "The End." (Note: The show is slated for two-and-a-half hours so be sure to check your DVR settings.)

And, trusting our brains haven't melted by 12:05 a.m., pour yourself a fresh mug of Dharma beer (or, umm, Dharma chamomile) and settle in for super fan Jimmy Kimmel's tribute to the show, "Jimmy Kimmel Live: Aloha to Lost." Matthew Fox, Terry O'Quinn, Michael Emerson, Naveen Andrews, Emilie de Ravin , Daniel Dae Kim, Jorge Garcia, Josh Holloway and Evangeline Lilly will all be on hand to -- finally -- open up about their "Lost" journey and screen three supposed alternate endings.

2. What's going to happen?
Well now, that's the million dollar question. And rather than head into spoiler territory, I'll let Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof -- who sat down for an interview with Jen earlier this week -- speak for themselves:

We feel like "Lost" deserved a real resolution, not a "snow globe, waking up in bed, it’s all been a dream, cut to black" kind of ending. We thought that would be kind of a betrayal to an audience that's been on this journey for six years. We thought that was not the right ending for our show. -- Carlton Cuse

Translation: We're not going to be shortchanged, ala David Chase's abrupt and unsatisfying (to many, including me) "Sopranos" ending. Will everybody be happy? Probably not. But at least it sounds like LindeCuse are going for actual closure.

And, for more cryptic LindeCuse "answers," posted several audio clips from the Thursday evening Times Talk Live with the two show runners.

3. What's the one thing I can do ahead of tonight's show to be absolutely prepared?
There is no one thing. So, if you're a bit preoccupied, distraction may be the key to making it through the hours until tonight's "Lost" fest kicks off. Here are a few suggested links to keep you busy:

-- The North Jersey Record sat down to watch Tuesday's penultimate episode with Damon Lindelof's mom. Her comments are priceless. My favorite bit is her reaction when Sawyer comes on screen: "Oh, hot man." A woman after my own heart.

-- How did Matthew Fox, Josh Holloway, Evangeline Lilly and the rest of the core cast end up on the biggest pop culture juggernaut of the new millennium? Watch their audition tapes and find out.

-- It's not too late to vote for your favorites in our "Lost" Superlatives poll. Results will be posted tomorrow. And, if that brain of yours just won't stop chugging through potential finale scenarios, then put them to good use by sharing them in our Message in a Bottle prediction page.

-- Visit our "Lost" Central page to bone up on season six analysis or, if you choose, fall down the rabbit hole in to seasons 1 - 5.

4. Is it really the end?
Yes. At least for Damon and Carlton, who have gone on record several times saying that they are done with "Lost" after the end of season six. Will Disney be content to let a viable franchise with a built-in rabid following fade away into TV history or will "Lost" -- like another cult fave, "Star Trek" -- be reborn as a feature film, spin-off, cartoon, graphic novel or amusement park attraction? Time will tell.

5. Okay, so when should we expect the analysis?
We'll post our initial reactions here in the blog immediately following tonight's show and ask you to do the same. Then, expect our fully fleshed out analysis sometime early tomorrow morning. Remember, you can text "LOST" to 98999 to get our analysis sent directly to your phone as soon as it's published. Then, make plans to be at your desk at lunch. Jen and I will be hosting a special extended (perhaps to 108 minutes?) "Lost" Hour live chat on Monday at Noon ET.

See you on the other side, brotha's (and sista's)...


P.S. "The End" is the title Damon and Carlton chose for tonight's finale, but we can't help but think of The Doors song of the same name (which was used in some early promos for the finale). And, somehow the song's opening lines seem like a fitting summation of how we're feeling right about now...

This is the end
Beautiful friend
This is the end
My only friend, the end
Of our elaborate plans, the end
Of everything that stands, the end
No safety or surprise, the end
I'll never look into your eyes... again

-- The Doors, "The End"

By Liz Kelly  | May 23, 2010; 10:50 AM ET
Categories:  Lost  | Tags:  Lost  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Celebritology Weekend: Jesse James surfaces on 'Nightline'; Bono undergoes emergency surgery
Next: 'Lost': Instant reaction to the series finale, 'The End'


In Washington, the Kimmel show is delayed until 12:30, as channel 7 has two half-hour news shows on Sunday nights. But a two-hour rerun of the finale, followed by a rerun of the Kimmel show, will air next Saturday starting at 8.

Posted by: Cosmo06 | May 23, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Like I told my mom about this new cereal @ the store called LOST.

Next time you go, GET LOST!

And good riddens to s dumb show...

Posted by: crrobin | May 23, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

God, I am really going to miss this show when it's gone...

But what better way to get ready for the finale than by watching this EPIC "LOST" parody:

Posted by: todders | May 23, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

To Cosmo06:

Thanks for this info! I've been afraid I'd miss the whole thing. I'm up at my Mom's for the weekend, and there's something about asking her to let me watch 4 1/2 hours of an extremely complicated TV show that she's never seen even once in her life that feels . . . kinda mean, really.

It doesn't help that my TiVo box is wonky and doesn't always record the channel I tell it to, so I can't guarantee it'll be there when I get home.

Posted by: | May 23, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Ack. I am just going to be lost...

Posted by: holly6 | May 23, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

The mysteries of "Lost" explained once and for all

Posted by: guzelvis | May 23, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

I just ate my last-Lost supper: Rum & chili roasted chicken thighs with pineapple, curried cauliflower in coconut milk, seaweed salad with avocado, and kimchi. I think I covered all the bases. Just hope I don't lapse into too much of a food coma to stay awake until The End.

Posted by: CafeBeouf | May 23, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

when one of the "Lost" actors not only remains larger than John Candy, he even continues to get fatter each year while stranded on a deserted island.., I had a hard time getting "Lost" in a believable premise of the show.
Glad I never wasted a minute on it.

Posted by: SkinsneedaGM | May 23, 2010 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Looking forward, the end is about to start. I am looking forward to Ben turning on MIB, as MIB says he wants to destroy the island and told Ben he would leave the island and leave Ben behind to watch over the island; Ben wants to protect the island.

Posted by: 19yankees78 | May 23, 2010 9:06 PM | Report abuse

I do have one more question. What would happen to Jacob if MIB didnt kill him and Jacob picked his replacement. Where would Jacob go? Wouldn't MIB want Jacob to pick a replacement? Then why not?

Posted by: 19yankees78 | May 23, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

So -- the Island was not Purgatory, as they always said.

BUT, the sideways world WAS a quasi-Purgatory, a reality constructed after they all died (whenever they did in the regular reality).

OK, I like it.

Posted by: ooyah32 | May 23, 2010 11:32 PM | Report abuse

I just hope that Ben doesn't take too long to "get ready," sitting all alone outside.

Come on in, Ben. You're forgiven. And you made a good number two.

Posted by: ooyah32 | May 23, 2010 11:36 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, ooyah, as some suspected the theological ignorance of the creators allows them these bizarre "outs": it's not Purgatory, it's just somewhere that souls go after death to prepare to move onto the next stage.

They weren't lying, they just have no idea what they're denying.

Posted by: UniqueID | May 23, 2010 11:41 PM | Report abuse

Yea, sideways was a construct, not just of Eloise's wish to have her son back but all the Lostees, the lives they always wanted. And since they were all dead, it could not last. Ok, I can live with that, but I still have a lot of questions, most of which will probably not be answered. That's ok. No other show topped Lost in the past 6 years, and I doubt something will come along for another 6 years that equals the ride we've enjoyed. As many of us thought we were along for the ride, well, we were, and a nice ride it was. What fun.

Polar bears, well, we have theories. Time travel, well why not. Sideways world, well, a purgatory we never expected. And the world, saved, as Ben, in his own mind, wanted it. No harm done and 6 years of fun. I hope those in Hollywood have learned something. If you want to get people fired up about a show, don't start up a reality show, and don't ignore writers who are the creators of innovation, new ideas and legends. A good show has good writers, good editors, good producers and a solid story. I can be done again. Make it happen.

Posted by: Fate1 | May 23, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

Makes some sense, ooyah. I think Ben would need a LOT more time in purgatory than someone like Hugo or Charlotte.

Not that it's Purgatory.

Posted by: UniqueID | May 23, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Regarding their non-Purgatory waiting room that was the Sideways Reality -- true, it is something of a bizarre out that is not grounded in any normal theology. On the other hand, Christianity professes a belief in an individual judgment after death, which might be seen as a kind of mid-point, before moving onto the next stage.

I'm not going to bust their chops on this. It is fiction, after all. They have some license to make things up.

I'm satisfied. (And about a trillion times more satisfied than the ugliness that was Matrix 3, where they had climbed out on a far limb and didn't know where the hell to go with it afterward.)

Posted by: ooyah32 | May 23, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

Ummmm, Ben wasn't on the plane; neither were Desmond and Penny. So why are they with all the dead folks at the end?

Posted by: justmike | May 23, 2010 11:50 PM | Report abuse

And about multi-cultural faiths, was that stained glass window in the back room of the church too much of a giveaway? What with, not only symbols of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity (star and cresent, star of David, cross), but a symbol of the Frozen Donkey Wheel also!

Posted by: ooyah32 | May 23, 2010 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, does that wheel have any theological significance outside of Lost? Looked like the Robert Jordan WOT.

There was also a Yin/Yang symbol.

Posted by: UniqueID | May 23, 2010 11:57 PM | Report abuse

Justmike -- because they were all dead.

Their deaths had nothing to do with the crash or the Island, other than what we already witnessed. Everyone lived or died normally.

Throughout the series, we saw all sorts of time-travelling, and being unstuck in time, and shifting here and there. That is, all sorts of variations on linear time. The one thing we did not see was eternity.

Eternity is beyond linear time. It is above and beyond time. Eternity transcends time. In eternity, past, present, and future all exist simultaneously (like the Tralfamadorians in Slaughterhouse Five).

What we saw at the end, when Christian said that there was no "now," was that they had all died (whenever they did in the course of their lives) and entered eternity.

Posted by: ooyah32 | May 23, 2010 11:58 PM | Report abuse

From your question about why Ben, Desmond, and Penny were with the "dead folks at the end" when they weren't on the plane, it sounds like you're assuming all the other people in the chapel at the end had died on the plane. I don't think that's what was being implied. Christian said that some people died long after Jack. The island wasn't a purgatory or waiting room or whatever you want to call it - just the "sideways world" was the waiting room. Lapidus, Miles, Richard, Kate, Sawyer, and Claire presumably all flew off the island and may have lived for decades more. Hugo may have lived for centuries as the "number one" on the island.

Or am I misunderstanding your question?

Posted by: dc-native | May 24, 2010 12:03 AM | Report abuse

re the stained glass window:
I thought I spied the Sanskrit symbol for "om," but I was too busy trying to follow what Christian was saying to look for more.

Posted by: dc-native | May 24, 2010 12:06 AM | Report abuse

What the hell??

Where the @#$* is the Jimmy Kimmel show?? ABC has been pimping it for 12:05 for four hours!

Man, I hate channel 7. They are always doing this crap, preempting national shows for stupid local stuff that no one cares about.

Posted by: ooyah32 | May 24, 2010 12:09 AM | Report abuse

Ok, maybe I'm getting dumb in my advancing years. It seems to me that the very last scene, showing the wreckage of the plane, indicated that there were no survivors. But apparently the souls of the passengers were in some sort of limbo for a while, and none of the following island adventures were real. But eventually, since they all died together, they finally found themselves in the church, getting ready to move on to whatever. I'm Ok with all that, just wondering how non-plane folks became part of their group.

Posted by: justmike | May 24, 2010 12:12 AM | Report abuse

So, will the Season 6 DVD set have an option for just watching the Island stuff, and skipping all of the Sideways-stuff-that-didn't-really-happen?

Posted by: Ghak | May 24, 2010 12:21 AM | Report abuse

**none of the following island adventures were real**

Wrong. They were all real. Except for the Sideways Reality. That was artificial.

Posted by: ooyah32 | May 24, 2010 12:22 AM | Report abuse

I don't think that they all died in the plane crash. For one thing, Ben wasn't on the plane. But also, Christian said that the reason they were waiting to all get together in the Sideways world was that their most significant life experiences were spent together. If they had dies in the crash of flight 815, then they wouldn't have had any life experiences together.

Posted by: Ghak | May 24, 2010 12:24 AM | Report abuse

This finale was nothing more than an extended curtain-call for the cast. Which, incidentally, dialed the glurge-factor up to eleven - along with those shallow "oh, hey, now I remember I love you" montages.

If you are a religious zealot or a fan of soaps or 'Dallas', then the finale was probably fulfilling and made you weep. If you are one of the rest of us, it was extremely anti-climactic and reeked of inept writing.

To me it seemed as if they wove a story with no clear end in sight, threw stuff in along the way to make it seem cool and mysterious and drive the hype to keep the numbers up and increase their cash flow, then they got lost and turned to fan sites like lostipedia for inspiration and answers to their own mysteries and decided they didn't know what to do since everyone was sick of working on it and they just wrapped it all up in this season with a bunch of cliches and philosophical phrases hoping some deep educated fans would fill in all the holes for them after the fact.

BTW- some of the holes not mentioned yet by others in this blog so far include sun and jin's baby, all the children the others took away, the temple, dogin and his crew, what of Eko and Ana Lucia, Charles Widmore, Desmond's son Charlie and also if the woman who raised jacob to think he was good and MIB evil was also good, then why was she evil enought to kill their mother after she gave birth to them and never tell them the truth, was she insane? what about russo, and nadya, why would Sayid not be with her? There were sooo many people left out of the final scene, it is ridiculous.

Did it occur to anyone that the church was where they all came to see Eloise? Wasn't it The Lampost? Wasn't it built by the Dharma initiative to help find each other and the island? So does that make those in the final scene the founders of the initiative in yet another place in time?

Someone brighter than I or the writers will have to untangle all this in a way that resolves everything. The way it was ended this evening reeks of spin off, sequel or movie franchise, seems they are leaving the door open to keep milking this cash cow.

Very disappointing.

PS: purgatory schmurgatory, i'm not buying it.

Posted by: tumnjun | May 24, 2010 3:19 AM | Report abuse

Also, if everyone who died over the span of eons of time, before during and after the crash and in every timeline was intrinsic to letting go and moving on, then why were all those i mentioned in my last post and ben, russo, her daughter, richard, jacob and mib also absent? Since they finally met their mortality and Jacob was the one that touched them all and MIB was the one bringing them all to the island to challenge Jacob, then why not have them present? Or was MIB there portrayed once again as Christian and he was right all along and leading them all away from it all, so that is why Jacob was absent.

They left this so open full of unresolved storylines, like the numbers and the island and the egyptian involvement and Dharma and a thousand other things, that they did not have to answer anything. All they have to do is throw their hands up and raise an eyebrow and say, "you find the answers we cannot spoon feed it to you" aka "we don't know WTF any of this means, we were just riding the wave man".

As Opus and Bill the Cat would say, "Pbfhtttt! and "Ack!"


BTW-anyone else ever think Damon Lindelof is just David Cross's doppelganger and that is why this failed?

Posted by: tumnjun | May 24, 2010 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Anyone notice in the long panoramic photo collage of the final characters all superimposed on top of or behind one another all the same height, the one you have posted at the top of this page, that Sawyer has no right leg behind Kate because it would have made her look like she had fat thighs? Nice jr college photoshop job. haha.

I am clearly pissy I invested so much time into this show hoping for an intellectual, not spiritual conclusion. Oh well, guess I better "let go" since it is what it is. Blech.

Posted by: tumnjun | May 24, 2010 3:43 AM | Report abuse

Are you kidding me? After 6 years of my life, this is the end you come up with? EPI
C FAIL..........I second THAT!! If you chopped the series in half and showed tonights ending it would be..okay...nice, but what about the other half???? You sucked us in with theology, philosophy, pop culture, psychology, academia, and sci-fi, then you drop us cold with 'white light'? Where are OUR ANSWERS you PROMISED??????? This is BULLSHI.................T!! I'm a very very dissapointed fan in California. What happened? You figured out that the fans figured out three seasons ago that they were all dead and it freaked you out that we all figured it out and so you told us that it wasn't pergatory because you needed us to be interested for three more seasons? Is that why the series ended so quickly and there was so many very looooooooonggg breaks in between and during seasons? To try to figure out what you were going to do about it???? It's too bad. The show was epic, yet the ending sucked. I expected so much more of you. It's actually hard to believe that after every moment of debate, theorizing, and wonderful intellectual, satisfying banter after each episode, we are left with only this? YOu screwed with our minds, led us on, and I for one am PISSED!!!!!!! Not to mention really really shocked.

Posted by: kathimia | May 24, 2010 5:47 AM | Report abuse

For those of you who are disappointed that all questions were not answered, read "The Lady & the Tiger." Sometimes you get enough information to figure out things for yourself, or room to interpret because that's what literature is all about. No doubt if 100% of the questions were answered, people would be disappointed that they had been spoonfed. Give all that you've seen, what do you think? I think the flash-sideways was brilliant; LockeMonster was a challenge because we had to remember he wasn't Locke; look at the power struggle between good/evil... niether of the brothers was 100% good and they both had an evil streak. See how much conversation you can get out of this? How can you say you didn't get your money's worth when there is so much discussion?

Posted by: beffeb | May 24, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

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