Wednesday, May 19, 2010
AMERICA—With a nearly six-year run on ABC set to conclude Sunday night, the series finale of Lost is expected to be a ratings bonanza and epic send-off to one of the country’s most epic, mysterious, and beloved television shows. But aside from fond remembrances and media coverage, the conclusion is being marked by one common thread: millions of smug assholes preparing to claim that they totally called the ending.
“Yeah, that whole ‘Locke vs. Jack thing’ being a part of the end? Totally called it in Season 1,” said avid fan and pompous know-it-all Bentham4815 on the Hydra Station message board.
“I don’t want to say I’m smarter than everyone else watching it, but I was able to discern the carefully laid threads that early and presciently and totally, totally call the ending.”
Of course, the fact that Bentham4815 failed to predict that Locke would be the physical representation of evil and the Island smoke monster, that Jack would be acting as a semi-Godlike Island protector, and that the two characters would be battling over a mystical light at the center of the island is immaterial.
“Locke vs. Jack. Totally got it,” he crowed.
As to why fans seem so intent on “calling” the labyrinthine plot strands and mysteries of Lost and not, for instance, attempting to derive enjoyment out of the end of one of the more intensive and creative endeavors in American television history, no one is quite sure. But some fans are willing to offer up their own personal experience.
“I doubt I’ve gotten a moment’s viewing pleasure out of Lost since about Season 2,” observed Amelia Bennett, an avid viewer who has numerous theories she’d love to see proven right.
“But I just needed to know what was going on! Furthermore, I needed to know that my careful viewing, inane attention to detail, and my every attempt to suck all the dramatic and narrative vibrancy from the show were going to be rewarded with a concrete declaration that I was smarter than just about everyone else watching Lost.”
“I need this,” she yelped, while diagramming out the various ways the characters met before their island ordeal and researching many of the scientists and philosophers who have been name dropped on the show, in a desperate search for final clues.
Indeed, vainly desiring to see their theories proven correct has taken over the former #1 passion of Lost fans: bitching about the show. Such tactics involved yelling about remembering liking the show “when it used to be about the characters” whenever a plot heavy episode came on, yelling about how the show was “spinning its wheels on the big mysteries” any time a character heavy episode came on, and always, always defiantly yelling that the show “wasn’t answering questions fast enough.”
But now some have even abandoned a desire to see the finale make any kind of narrative sense as long as their theory is proven correct.
“Nanobots,” said Lost blogger Frank “Lapidus” Arroway. “I said that shit back in Season 1. Highly advanced nanobots. It can explain the healing, it can explain what the smoke monster is a cloud of, it can be why the Dharma Initiative was there, it can explain a lot.”
“Sure, it doesn’t explain all the Jacob/Man In Black stuff, the time travel, all the mystical connections, Widmore, and invalidates most of the storyline of the past 5 years,” he conceded. “But I said that shit back in 2004. Do you realize how smart I would look if that turned out to be the case? If Jacob showed up and said ‘Yeah, it was all nanobots’? I could rub it in everyone’s face. I would have called it!”
Until the finale, millions are boning up on old Doc Jensen columns on EW, talking loudly about the fact that they think it’s all a biblical allegory and that the Island is the Garden of Eden at the water cooler during break, and e-mailing their friends all kinds of theories in a “throw shit to the wall and hope it sticks” fashion in the vain hope that at some point during the two and a half hour finale, they can smugly look over at one of their friends, spouses, or loved ones, knowingly nod and say “See… I told you.”
“That’s all I want,” said Bennett. “The finale can totally blow, I just need that moment of validation. I sure as hell didn’t spend six years watching this show for entertainment’s sake.”