The Wait Is Almost Over

This week marks an historic occasion. Many long months of waiting, hoping, speculating, yearning, and (sometimes) pining by millions of people will finally come to an end.

I am speaking, of course, of the return of Lost on Wednesday night. [Spoilers after the jump.]

Possibly the most successful “ensemble” show in television history (and certainly one of the most successful SF shows ever), Lost has whipsawed audiences with plot twists, mysteries, answers that only raise more questions, and fascinating characters for four seasons. The producers assure us that they really do know where they’re going and that there’s a logical explanation for everything (and one certainly hopes J.J. Abrams learned his lesson about creating your backstory on the fly with Alias). So we keep tuning in — and speculating about what it all means.

The (strike foreshortened) fourth season centered around the freighter — the arrival of which split the survivors into two factions: Those who wish to leave and those who wish to stay — and the (flashforward) efforts of the “Oceanic Six” to protect the island’s secrets from the rest of the world (which they’ve led to believe are the only survivors of Oceanic Flight 815). Now, apparently, things start getting weird:

What ever happened to the four-toed statue? Why do some inhabitants of the island never seem to age? What is the Smoke Monster? And, as one of the time-traveling survivors of the crash of Oceanic Airlines Flight 815 asks in the premiere of the new season of “Lost,” Wednesday on ABC, “When are we now?”


While most television series maintain a so-called bible — a guide to characters and plotlines that are developed by the creators but revealed over multiple seasons — few if any shows have twists and turns as byzantine as those on “Lost.”

And unlike many jobs, which get easier as the material becomes more familiar, this one has become exponentially more complicated and challenging with each new episode. That will be particularly true this season, when the island itself starts moving through time as the people who seem to be the guardians of its secrets try to protect it from a shadowy conspirator who could have darker uses for its powers.

Political junkies and a decline in viewership notwithstanding, it’s probably a toss-up whether this or that other major event tomorrow is the one more Americans are truly excited p about (of course, both pale in comparison to the return of American Idol — a fact which is truly mystifying to me). For my part, I just want to know where the island went. And how the Six will get back to the island. And what happened there that’s so bad that they have to. And what Sawyer asked Kate to do for him. And….

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Dodd Harris
About Dodd Harris
Dodd, who used to run a blog named ipse dixit, is an attorney, a veteran of the United States Navy, and a fairly good poker player. He contributed over 650 pieces to OTB between May 2007 and September 2013. Follow him on Twitter @Amuk3.