'Lost': A history of epic theory fails
I've been writing this "Lost" blog since the Fall of 2007. My path here was pretty bizarre. Came out of college thinking I would be Radiohead's tour lighting designer. After burning out on theatre, I turned to the then nascent world of blogging to have a creative outlet. Inspired by ESPNs Bill Simmons, I wrote up a running diary of the MTV Video Music Awards that ended up getting linked by MSNBC, which is turned led me to new readers, one of which dated a guy that worked here at Zap2it, who years later needed a recapper and remembered me long after they had split it. Like I said: pretty bizarre.
When I was handed the keys to the "Lost" kingdom here, I was frankly terrified. Terrified of being wrong. Terrified of stating the wrong facts. (On my personal blog? Not so much. Here's literally the first thing I ever wrote about "Lost", back in 2006 when I assumed Alvar Hanso was the show's Big Bad. Oops.) So for the first few weeks, I played it pretty safe, agonizing over short entries involving casting announcements. Eventually, I decided I'd rather be interesting than correct (at least, theory wise), and put out speculation that I knew would more than likely be disproved. "Being right" took a back seat to "provoking discussion." So long as the arguments were honestly delivered and didn't turn into variations on "The Island is actually on the moon," I felt there was value not in "solving" the show so much as taking the "wouldn't it be cool if..." approach.
Of course, having analysis of the show that goes back 2.5 years means that there's a treasure trove of hysterically incorrect theorizing on my part. A lot of this stems from the fact that, by design, no one had appropriate information to accurately predict the endgame of the show. (If you heard the name "Jacob" in Season 3's "I Do" and could project the scenario laid out in "Across the Sea," well, mazel tov to you.) So as we've come to the end of things here both on the show and on the blog, I've been looking back at some of the more memorable ways in which I have missed the mark.
After all, I've had, by and large, an absolute blast writing this blog. Sure, it's made me appreciate the show more, and certainly honed my craft, but none of that would mean much if it had been a pain in the butt to produce. If some of my predictions have indeed come true, well, it's somewhat to do with the fact that I've thrown enough of them against the wall that some were bound to hit the mark. Most of the time, when my theories are proven false, they are done so by actual events that supercede what I had predicted. Other times, the story simply wasn't as interested in a particular element as I was. Occasionally, this schism irks, but for the large majority of the time, it's delighted.
So, in the spirit of that, here are some interesting re-reads for you in the final week of the show. This is far from a complete list (I know some of you would like to include every article I've ever written about Season 6 here), but it's a fun sample anyways.
"Cloverfield" is totally a "Lost" movie! My first (and still all-time personal favorite) epic fail here.
Annie is super important to the show's endgame! Well, no. Not at all.
Michael is totally the guy in the coffin! Close, in that he and Locke are both humans. I could have guessed "Vincent" and missed both identity AND species. So, whew.
Little Ben's sandwich to Sayid in Dharmaville was a secret code from The Others! Sometimes, a sandwich is just a sandwich.
The Island upon which Ajira 316 crashed was part of another timeline created by Jack and Co. jumping back to 1977! Nope. Was SO sure about this. Oh well.
Ilana and her crew were infected by the Island! In fact, she and they pulled a Cyndi Lauper and showed their true colors in "Some Like it Hoth." Close enough, kinda.
We will DEFINITELY see the other side of the Season 5 outrigger chase! Sigh. (Double bonus for once again asserting Annie would pop up this season. Annie, are you OK? Are you OK, Annie? Fine, last mention of her ever. End of an era, people.)
Walt will have a big comeback in Season 6! Not so much, to the relief of birds everywhere. (Also, this is a reverse jinx so he comes back and kicks butt in the finale. I'm holding out for a hero, Bonnie Tyler-style, on this one.)
I promised to write less, not more, about "Lost" during the final season. Oops.
Coming tomorrow: How To Spend The Final Weekend of "Lost": A Fan's Guide. Many of you have emailed me for such a guide, so I'll do my best to help you through it.
Photo credit: ABC