Poet Rainer Maria Rilke wrote, “The only journey is the one within.”
The basic structure of a good story is a good premise, strong character development, action, reaction, conflict, choices and a journey's end.
The quintessential story arc in this generation is Luke Skywalker's journey to become a Jedi. From humble beginnings, a tragedy propels a naive young man into a dangerous adventure across the galaxy in search of truth, purpose and family. But throughout, the journey was within Luke's heart and soul - - - the mixed emotions, conflicts, set-backs and new friendships that affect how he would become a man.
Did anyone in LOST have such an heroic journey?
Sun defied her rich and overbearing father by marrying a poor fisherman's son, but her life did not end well.
Locke tried to rebel against his miserable life without a family, only to be crippled by his own father which led to a lifetime of mistrust and failure. His life did not end well either.
Kate was a bored, troublemaker as a child who kept her selfish ways of manipulating others in the forefront of her personal survival game. She had an opportunity to change (as did all of the characters) but she did not. She could never find true happiness in her life.
Sawyer was a vengeful boy who turned into the man he despised for destroying his family. But when he could have had a chance to led a family, he turned his back and fled responsibility. He took the easy way out because his personal bitterness and torment was his own internal best friend.
Sayid led a life of struggle and burden of responsibility. He did the dirty jobs. It affected his mental state. When he left Iraq and found his true love, it was taken away from him. In his journey to find her, he failed the woman he claimed to be the love of his life - - - and wound up with a woman he had only a short affair.
Hurley was an introvert scarred by his father's abandonment. He felt he was unlucky at life and that he was the sole cause of his own problems. But when he got lucky and won the lottery, a life changing event, he willed himself into more bad luck. In order to keep himself together, he invented his own best friend and checked himself into a mental institution to be safe from the world that brought him only bad luck. Even when he tried to change his life (by finding the meaning of the numbers), his plane crash lands on a dangerous island. He has an opportunity to re-invent himself but he never does. We don't know how much of Hurley's experiences and thoughts were real or imagined as some theories believe.
Jack may have been the closest to a clear path journey. His story starts as being a highly successful surgeon. He is at the top of his profession. He is well respected. He holds life and death decisions in his hands. But his demon is the lack of love from his father. His relationship with his father eats away at his soul to the point of jealousy, ire and mental breakdowns. The fact his father dies in a Sydney alley causes Jack to begin a journey into a downward spiral of personal torment. He becomes the reluctant leader of the survivors. His decision making becomes fragmented between himself as being the leader and good of the group. He decides to hide his island past when he is rescued, causing even more pain and suffering to the people around him. When Locke is killed, Jack has his final mental breakdown - - - the illogical quest to return to the island to fulfill some unknown reason. At this point, objectively he lost his ability to be rational. But since he left enough of the old Jack in the minds of his island mates, they joined him on a fateful journey back to the island. But the resolution on the island did not solve any of Jack's life problems. It was merely murky waters of his own discontent to the point of a suicide pact with the Man in Black as they went down into the Light Cave. Jack did not die a hero's death, but a foolhardy attempt to runaway from his problems. He did not have a personal redemption. He did not find the solution to save his friends. He did not get them off the island or home. Jack's journey was the reverse path of Luke's. Jack did not find his journey's end with true answers to make his life great.