Monday, May 1, 2017


Janet Louise Stevenson wrote, "Authenticity requires vulnerability, transparency and integrity."

In the fan autopsy of LOST series, there were conflicting results of whether the show runners captured the essence of the LOST experience and mythology to the end. To be authentic means being genuine; made or done in the traditional or original way, or in a way that faithfully resembles an original.

LOST started off gang busters as a media and audience favorite. The idea of combining the terror of a commercial plan crash and a mysterious island filled with characters with secrets captivated us. The quick pace of the pilot made us comfortable with the large ensemble cast. The foundation of the series was set: every character has a back story, but there are situations where one can erase their past to create a their new future.

In the quest to find a new future, the characters were set against various villains, dangers and unbelievable science bending physics. But we stuck with the characters as the plot lines began to weave, zig, zag and stumble like a 3 a.m. drunk. We felt empathy for the characters because we had glimpses of their vulnerability. We understood most of the them through the flashbacks of events that changed (or hindered) their lives. Many had been on emotional roller coasters, only to wind up on a wilder island ride.

But the writers were not as transparent as most wanted them to be. When you create a mystery, viewers expected an answer. (Note: even if the answer did not make sense.) When a character betrays another, you expect a complete explanation. When a character changes sides, we would like to know the reason why.

 Integrity is the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; the condition of being unified, unimpaired, or sound in construction. The 6th season lost most viewers because the show runners had not been fully honest when they boasted from the beginning that they had the story fully worked out to the end. The hard dead lines and tangential plot lines that added confusion instead of Easter eggs led to a vocal minority saying "they are making it up as they go."  That complaint stings when you network has positioned the series as one of the greatest television events of all time.

The fast forward, sideways world still bothers most people. It does not have any unification, pairing or sound construction to the original story line. If you would have eliminated it in its entirety, it would not have had a great impact on the resolution of the island story lines. Instead, it caused more problems than solutions.

LOST was an original series that lost its way about halfway through its run. If the writers had kept to the original story principles instead of shooting for dramatic filler and strange plot twists, it could have been a more authentic classic.