Let’s just start from a position of mutual respect, because I mean it when I say that I don’t want any trouble. I’m not here to pick a fight, and I’m not here to assess your intelligence, and I don’t want to call anyone names, though it’s possible that before I’m finished here, I will do all of those things.
But only if you’re asking for it. If you are simply a person who enjoyed Lost right up to Hurley’s Church Jamboree, then I am nothing but happy for you. I am in fact, jealous of you. I wish with all my heart that I felt right now, about Lost, the way you feel. Please, treasure your happiness and joy and satisfaction – I have no interest in taking it away from you.
And by the same token, when I tell you that I, and millions of others, feel enraged and betrayed by the ending, that we are utterly stunned by the forest of unanswered questions, that we expected most if not all of the bizzaro plotlines to converge in a more direct and satisfying way, let’s just agree to disagree.
All I need you to do, is refrain from trying to tell us that we are stupid, or that we don’t “get it.” See, that’s false and it’s insulting, and that’s how problems start.
We all watched the same show, and we all watched the end. If you liked it – or even loved it – I don’t think you’re stupid. I think your expectations were different from mine, that’s all. By all means, keep your dignity, and I will keep mine.
You can even think of it as living together so we don’t die alone, if that rings your bell.
No, if that’s all right with you, then this letter is over. Namaste. Rock on, fellow human being. Please, take nothing past this point personally, because you and I can live in peace, my friend.
But you’re really not who I want to talk to right now. This next part of the letter is for a different kind of Person Who Liked The End Of Lost.
Right now I want to talk to every one of you posturing pseudo-intellectuals, who’s been blowing up the internet with your insipid insistence that the show actually did answer a satisfying number of questions, that the ending really was full of meaning and depth, that they really delivered the goods they’ve promised us for six years.
Those of us who didn’t like it, just didn’t get it, you’ve all been blathering. Because we’re stupid. Because we’re shallow. Because the show was only for super geniuses, like you.
I’ll tell you what, I’m not even going to debate the answers to the questions. I’ll bet there are a few things that I missed, no doubt. And I understand that I can extrapolate the answers to a lot of questions, and fill in the blanks for myself. Yes, I could have done that without watching the end, and you know what?
I could have done it ten times better. There. I’ve said it.
Don’t believe me? Give me ten million dollars and an island, let’s find out. Trust me, I’m not claiming to be a superwriter here, just pointing out the bar is very, very low right now.
You know that they didn’t have the WHOLE story together from the beginning, right? You know, for instance, that Mr. Eko was meant to be the anti-Locke. That they simply failed to hammer down his contract, and he split. So tell me, a major character like that and they just dispose of him for practical reasons – how does that fit in with the “all of this happened for a reason” theme?
That’s why the kids were disappearing, too. Because by season two, they’d look a lot older, and the plot was only what, a couple of months at that point? So they had to use a plot device, get the kids out of here. Yes, everything happened for a reason, all right. Just not very good reasons. Reasons unrelated to the story.
Your idea of answers is far different from mine. If you showed up in my bathroom at three am, and I said, what the hell are you doing here, you’d say, “I’m an accountant.” And then you’d be bewildered that I was expecting a better answer than that.
What’s this obsession with answers, that’s so shallow, you’d say, and then you’d be picking your teeth out of my sink.
What the hell was the island? You’d think they could have told us that, an island that moves, what is it, why the time travel?
Here’s you: “You’re so dim! The island symbolized the struggle of good vs. evil!”
But that’s not what I asked. The show started off about a literal plane crash, on a literal island that you could get to in a submarine or a boat or a plane, from our literal world.
I know what it symbolized, you arrogant ass. You can put your sock puppets down.
Because all along when they were throwing crazy plotline after crazy plotline at us, we kept asking the producers in letters and interviews and online, are you guys totally full of crap, and just throwing things at us, or do you know what you’re doing with all this? Are you going to hook all this together?
Don’t worry, the producers said, we know exactly what we’re doing. All will be revealed.
So, for instance, the time jumping was explained as a mysterious wheel that was stuck. When they said, all would be revealed, I expected them to eventually reveal what was up with the wheel. Now, eventually Widmore “explained” the wheel as, wait for it..
A wheel. A wheel they brought along, that they were going to “hook up” to the “energy pocket.”
Listen, if that counts as an answer to you, chief, that’s fine with me, but trust me. It doesn’t make you smart.
Okay, how about the numbers? Why the numbers? What was up with the numbers?
Yes, I know. I saw them written on the cave wall. If writing the numbers on the cave wall and having Locke Monster tell you with a twinkle in his eye that every character has a number, if that counts as an explanation to you, then I think maybe it’s time I told you, babies don’t come from storks.
Why would the numbers have to be entered every 108 minutes into a computer? Why, smart guy? Did you just say because the numbers add up to 108?
Seriously, I am not even going to spend sixty seconds looking up the numbers and checking, since the producers couldn’t be bothered to write their show, but would that really count as an answer to you?
Did Jacob manipulate the lottery, so the numbers would bring in Hurley? Or did the numbers become important because Hurley was going to replace Jacob, and he won the lottery with them?
Here’s you: “Not everything has to be spelled out, man. The pieces are all right there, just put them together and stop asking to be spoon fed. It’s spiritual, man.”
But see, when the producers said, “all will be revealed,” that’s what I took it to mean. Not, we’ll leave the existing pieces lying around the set, and you can use your imagination to put them together and form your own answers, because it’ll be spiritual. This isn’t a book of Mad Libs. This was the most convoluted plot in television history, and they said they’d tie it all up.
There’s no denying, they didn’t tie it all up.
I’ve seen a lot of you claiming to know all the answers, but also claiming to be somehow above explaining it to lesser minds. The Emperor sure has a nice outfit on, doesn’t he, genius? Are you 100% positive, that the joke is on us, and not you?
Jacob uses magic ashes to explain to everyone why he brought them here, after he’s dead? Seriously, you’re all right with that, and I’m the simpleton?
How ‘bout Jacob walks on up the beach on day one, or even day two, says, “Good news and bad news, everyone. Let’s have a talk.” You see how we wouldn’t need the Magic Commune With The Dead Ashes Plot Device, right out of the clear blue sky, that way?
My favorite is when I’m called a “so-called” fan. Because, now that I’m saying the ending sucked, it’s like the Indians are on a losing streak and I jumped ship. But this isn’t a baseball team, all right? When a show starts sucking, and you pretend to still like it, that’s not admirable. That’s you, being a posturing, gullible fool.
See, if I had really missed the point, and the point was really right there, then someone around me would be explaining it to me by now. The vast majority of my friends and associates have either never seen the show – and frankly, I envy them – or they are every bit as livid as I am.
You seem to believe, Mr. The End Of Lost Was Awesome, that we all missed it, and you got it. That you’re that much smarter than everyone I know.
Basing your entire assessment of your intellect on your television watching skills. You’re awesome at watching television. Go ahead and look in the mirror and say that a few times, see if you puke, cause I just did, a little bit. In my mouth, just typing that.
I’ll tell you what I expected. I expected them to not just provide an ending to the main story, but to provide an explanation for all the baffling things that happened. All of them. If they had done that, it would have been without question or hyperbole, the single greatest work of fiction ever produced, including all the works of Shakespeare and John Steinbeck and Charles Dickens combined.
Here’s you: “There’s no way they could have done that. It would have been impossible.”
Maybe so, that’s why we were asking, every time they introduced a new wacky plotline or a new wacky character, that’s why we were saying, dudes, are you positive you got this? You’re sure you can deliver a package this size? Cause you’re writing a pretty tall order here.
We got it, they said, with their John Locke twinkle. Don’t even worry. All will be revealed.
Then the sideways timelines showed up. I’ll tell you what I was thinking, because I’m so stupid. I was thinking, in physics, they say that you can’t change the past. That if you were to go back in time and try, you’d end up creating a new timeline that runs parallel to it.
But that’s just because I’m a slobbering monkey man who doesn’t recognize a decent ending when I see it. My consultation of quantum physics was all because I refuse to use my brain when I’m watching an interesting show, that’s all that is, right?
So anyway, in my sub-moronic hypothesis, I was thinking, the parallel timeline characters would then end up back on the parallel island, and that they’d end up in the parallel past as well, and that they’d set off a parallel nuclear bomb, and that the two nuclear explosions in parallel universes would be the source of the energy pocket.
Two nuclear explosions, causing each other, negating each other. And that the wheel was going to be half in one universe, and half in the other.
And I thought, the Dharma Initiative, being all about harmony, was created to maintain some kind of balance, keeping the two universes from crashing into each other and destroying each other. And that they were caught in an infinite loop, the one nuclear explosion creating the one timeline, the other nuclear explosion creating the other.
The struggle between Jacob and his brother would be that each was a representative of a universe, that each wanted his own universe to survive the struggle. That neither was good nor evil, just both of them selfish, and imbued with power somehow by the energy pocket.
Yes, but you’re the genius and I’m a slack-jawed manchild, with drool on my shirt, because a smarter explanation is, there’s a big, literal cork in a hole in a smoke monster cave factory, and the sideways timeline is a Pantheistic Pizza Party Afterlife Paradise Land, that all the characters created to be happy together in. That the writers killed half a season, Planning The Pizza Party, instead of answering questions that you just told me, they’d never have time to answer.
God, I wish that I was as smart as you.
Now, you might want me to come over to your blog and read what you think happened, but there’s a good reason I’m not going to do that. Several, actually.
The main reason is, the producers of Lost assured me all this time that they would tie all this up. They said, don’t worry, we know what we’re doing. They didn’t say anything about you.
They didn’t say, don’t worry, we’ll wrap it up in such a way that you need to have a stoner who reads too much Ayn Rand explain it to you on his blog. If you write something that takes six years, and then at the end, a total stranger has to explain it to millions of people, then guess what? You wrote it poorly.
The other reason is, I’m pretty comfortable with my intelligence. I’m not the smartest guy in the world, no doubt, but I’m pretty sure I’m not an idiot. And I have one hundred percent confidence in the intelligence levels of my friends. If there’s something I’m missing, one of my guys or one of my gals would have broken me down by now. Happens all the time.
But mostly it’s because you guys who are claiming that the ending was satisfying – you’re not fooling anyone. You’re a bunch of deluded Hot Pocket Munchers, and if Lost was speaking to you in a way that my friends and I couldn’t understand, then it was in the same way Spongebob Squarepants speaks to children.
In other words, no thank you. I’ll be staying out of your basement, freak.
Here’s the truth, they lied to us. They were even laughing about it, on the wind-up special, laughing about knowing where it was going and pulling plotlines out of their butts to kill the time. Like driving around town for six years, taking crazy turns down alleys and sidestreets and through parking garages.
You sure you know where you’re going?
Then six years later, they get on the interstate, and say, “See, told you I know where we were going. Cleveland.”
Not very impressive, even if you think Cleveland rocks.
Hey, I kind of like the idea of a Hurley Afterlife Party, but only as an epilogue.
The idea that HALF OF THIS SEASON was a Hurley Afterlife Party Planning Meeting, oh my god. Where’s Patrick Duffy when you need him, in a towel?
Listen to me. You did not understand the show any better than I did. We both understood it. You were simply satisfied with what little you received, and you chose to stay on board. That part I understand, and even applaud.
But next, you chose to judge the rest of us, for wanting what we expected. You claimed, you actually got what WE expected, even though you clearly didn’t, and you did it to make yourself look spiritual and wise.
If I look at a pile of crap, and say that I don’t like it, that doesn’t mean I don’t understand it. I understand the pile of crap just fine. I just don’t like piles of crap.
You do, that’s fine, and you prefer to call them masterpieces. Awesome. Grab a spoon, genius.
But you’re not fooling anyone. To the rest of us, you look like a little kid, pretending to read a book, holding it upside down. It would be cute if you weren’t spewing venom all over the place about how none of the adults around you can read.
Instead it’s simply sad. I feel sorry for you. On behalf of myself, and so many of my friends who have been fans of this show since the beginning, I wanted to tell you that. You’re not fooling anyone. Your behavior is sickening, your reasoning is weak, and we don’t want you to explain to us what it’s like to live in your world, or to pretend to.
Everyone this is an open letter, but please feel free to forward this to anyone you think might need it.
For my part, that’s the hairball I needed to cough up. My apologies once again, if you liked the show and you aren’t walking around being a dick about it.
As for the writers and producers, listen, good one guys. I appreciate a good practical joke, I understand you made a stack of cash, and we’re definitely cool, you and I.
You hit us with the old Kansas City Shuffle, and it was no one’s fault but ours.
Namaste, you sons of bitches. Namaste.
The Curse of Future Tom
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Before the finale: Making My Peace With Lost
Then more recently: Lost Rant Follow-Up: Live Together Or Die Alone