TV Show LOST: Mysteries And Layers

Raising the Bar in TV

One of the most mystifying and intricately produced shows for television in the mid 2000’s was the TV show LOST. The show aired on ABC from the fall of 2004 until the spring of 2010 and carried with it a large fandom. For six years LOST entertained, enlightened and initiated deep conversations about philosophy, science, and religion. Its team has earned the right to be included as one of the best shows on television, going above and beyond in the writing, casting, and production.

LOST Left Us a Little Lost, They Named it Right

Art is about interpretation, and this is something LOST has left for its viewers by leaving some ideas open about ‘the light’ and what happened after. But despite all of the mysteries being answered or left unresolved, LOST still managed to captivate millions for the past six years in numerous ways.

The Fate of Flight 815

The story followed the survivors of flight 815 headed to LAX from Australia. The plane veered 1000 miles off course and crashed on a mysterious island somewhere in the South Pacific. The story was heavily character driven, and full of mysteries, some of which have never been solved.

Hi-Tech, High Quality Adds to the Production of LOST

lost_terry-beach 0019
lost_terry-beach 0019

LOST was filmed on location on the island of O’ahu, Hawai’i, which is beautiful on its own, but what also contributes to the captivation and quality is the use of four different styles of cameras, including Panavision Gold II, a 35 mm camera which is used most often in filming movies.

The Extra Bang for your Buck

One of the aspects of LOST which made it such an award winning program was the extra details put into the show. The soundtrack orchestrated by Michael Giacchino, the prop placement, and literary tie-ins. The endless easter eggs. The show made fans want to read more, and study physics and philosophy.

The Filming and Cinematography

Most Television programs do not use the high-quality film or cameras that LOST had invested and had access to. This gave the program more realism and enhanced quality than what you would expect for television. LOST is also known as having the most expensive pilot ever filmed.

Many Mysteries, Many Connections, but No Connecting Flights

In the series, one character, Claire had never met Jack, who was later discovered to be her half-brother. And they happen to be on the same plane. As the series unfolds, all of the characters are all connected to each other besides being on the same flight. This is not fully explained until late in the final season. But probably the biggest mystery still left, is how do 70+ people survive a plane breaking apart in the sky?

Dig Deeper, Down the Hatch. Really, Just Get it Down

At the end of Season One, a hatch is discovered on the island and it is eventually opened after much protest from the characters. Much like anything in life half of the people were for it, and half were not. The cliffhanger of Season One was left with the audience wondering what the heck was down there.

It Wasn’t just a What, it Was a Who Was in the Hatch

This guy was down there as it turns out – Desmond, a recovering coward. Desmond has his issues as every character does, and he makes attempts to save the survivors a few times. Of course, this is after he realized escape was futile.

The Dharma Initiative

So there is a creepy secret group that previously inhabited the island. It also led to the craziest of storylines which included a time loop. Debate raged for several seasons because of this. The survivors had to do, what they had to do on this island, because they already did it? Yes. In essence, they created their own suffering, by ironically trying not to do so.

The Numbers

4-8-15-16-23-42 This series of numbers follows Hurley around, they are his winning lottery numbers and are part of the island. They are the sequence used in the hatch to stop the countdown on the clock. They are heard broadcast on the radio by this odd French woman who has been living on the island. They show up at odd times all over the place.

Symbolism in LOST

The scientific nature of the series and the usage of character names belonging to famous scientists and philosophers added layers of symbolism and depth. Because of all the mystery, some journeyed beyond LOST in the hopes of solving the show, and wound up learning things they may have never been interested in before.

This Game Has Two Sides

Destiny, free will, man’s struggle to evolve and be free are themes at the heart of what LOST is all about. For six years, and 121 episodes, viewers have watched with wonder, of the fate of a group of passengers that crash on an uncharted island somewhere in the South Pacific.

The Raft

Built by sheer determination, and with whatever resources they could find, (twice, since the first raft was burnt by Walt) a raft was assembled. The launch was full of hope and what people can do when they put their minds to something and work together. The episode ends with our survivors following the raft and cheering from the shoreline with the hope that the people on the raft will find rescue.

That Statue Only Had 4 Toes

Fans had wondered what the deal was about the statue seen at the end of Season One. The state was just a foot, and viewers postulated what the rest of the statue looked like over the years. To give fans some resolution, LOST creators decided to build a statue near the end of season five, but only gave a glimpse of the back. Later the Egyptian goddess Taweret was revealed. Not too many shows, if any, have ever gone through as much trouble for their fans.

Some People Kept LOST Bibles and Notebooks to Keep Track of Everything

Attention to detail was highly valued on LOST; Greg Nations was the keeper of “The LOST Bible” where they recorded all of the details viewers may take for granted such as who had guns, where they got them from, and where they were left. Every person who worked behind-the-scenes, from hair to props, kept to the show’s authenticity.

LOST Encouraged Advanced Learning and Reading

Not every fan of LOST knew who Nikola Tesla, or Dan Faraday was before Lost, or even followed the philosophies of Hume, Rousseau and Locke, but has been enlightened, much in the way “the others” referred to Latin as being the language of the enlightened. It was a running joke that many fans took up learning French, Spanish and Latin during the years LOST aired.

Easter Eggs

An Easter egg is an unexpected bonus feature, usually giving a hidden message or a clue. Sometimes they are just inside jokes. LOST was full of them. This was during the Flash sideways, Hurley is drinking from a carton of milk with Walt’s “missing” photo.

Top LOST Episodes

Claire is finally giving birth to Aaron, forcing Kate to be her midwife. Kate in fact, rises to the occasion and delivers Aaron safely despite being on a creepy magical island with possible “others” wanting to cause them harm. The birth was a long time in the making for the whole first season. Claire represented both hope and fear.

“I did not ask for the life I was given, but it was given nonetheless and with it, I did my best.”

Eko was a perfect case for someone being put in a bad situation and having to do what they needed, in order to survive. Eko was a protector on the island. He built a church, became the resident priest, and he learned to become what he was once pretending to be. That good part of him was inside all along. In the end, Eko understood the difference, and the smoke monster killed him anyway, because it directly conflicts with his own beliefs that man is corrupt.

We Got to Throw Our Love Down a Well

“If it’s not real then what are you doing here, why did you come back? Why do you find it so hard to believe?”; “Why do you find it so easy to believe”;“It’s never been easy!” Jack and Locke debating science and faith. This back and forth is part of the complex foundation of LOST. Both sides, however, as shown on LOST need each other to survive, for one without the other will just get you killed.

“You make your own luck”

Yes, the idea that a 30-year-old van, sitting on a tropical island would ever start again does seem farfetched. What’s even more farfetched is how it got there to begin with. Hurley and Charlie (who had been escaping near-death situations all this time) begin rolling the discovered Dharma Van downhill, in hopes of getting it to start. At the bottom of the hill is a bunch of rocks. “Victory or Death” was the theme. This time, it was victory. The bus started.

The Music of LOST is Orchestrated for Each Episode

There are certain themes that have replayed to resonate certain feelings when a character is dying, in trouble, or falling in love. The score was elegant with strings and sound effects that were always connected to the flashbacks, and the smoke monster. Music was carefully selected, and also provided clues to the characters and what was happening.

LOST Taught us to be Better People

Lost, Zuleikha Robinson as Ilana Verdansky
Lost, Zuleikha Robinson as Ilana Verdansky

In Season 6 Ben is caught by Illana after he is freed by the smoke monster from digging his own grave. He wants to explain his horrible actions for killing Jacob, he goes on to explain how he understands what she is feeling because he was responsible for the death of his daughter right in front of his eyes. He understands that she cannot forgive him, because he doesn’t forgive himself. He also realizes in this moment what a creep he has become, and in a moment of true goodness, Illana says she accepts him as one of the group anyway.

“Not Penny’s Boat”

Charlie was a fan favorite for a long time, especially once he made the brave journey of giving up his heroin with the help of John Locke, a guitar, and possibly even Claire. He was a protector to Claire and Aaron, a friend to Hurley, and ultimately a hero, twice over. He bravely swam to what he knew was going to be his death to get Claire and Aaron rescued.

Juliet and the Incident

It was a game-changing statement in the series, or maybe she was just so out of it, she was heading towards the light… (no pun intended) Although this scene was so heart-wrenching, it made Juliet a hero. Despite being pulled to her death, down an extremely deep hole, she managed to crawl her way over to the bomb and beat on it with a rock to hopefully save the rest of her friends.

The Light at the End of the LOST Tunnel

The finale was written with as many cliff-hangers (even literal) as possible; it still managed to fill itself with mystery and emotion to complete the quest of man’s struggle to be free. What this episode did was remind us why we loved these characters and gave us the chance to say good-bye to them.

Even though it was a TV show, it was not just a TV show

Everyone that truly loved it will tell you it was so much more, it was a learning experience, it was an opportunity to think and theorize, it allowed people to bond with their questions and their beliefs, it tested those beliefs and it gave hope. The show inspired viewers to read books, learn languages, and study physics. For viewers, LOST was a huge inspiration in the area of education.

Desmond Saves the Day

The unlikely hero, and former coward, Desmond, is the one who helps get everyone where they need to be in the end. The series had a theme of redemption. Everyone had their moment, nearly everyone was a hero at one point or another.

Most Popular Character

Hurley is a beloved character in the show, as were nearly all of the characters. (Though people sometimes really hated Kate because she was so sneaky.) But every character had a terrible flaw, except for this guy. He did miss his dad though, and probably ate some of his pain. But that’s minor to killing people, lying and being a jerk.

Have a Cluckity Cluck Day Hugo

Here’s Desmond and Hurley (a.k.a Hugo) at Mr. Clucks in the Flash Sideways of Season 6. Hurley owned a Mr. Clucks when he won the lottery because he loved their chicken. It was also destroyed by a meteorite and killed a reporter because of the numbers curse.

Man’s Search to be Free

The black and white stones represent juxtaposition in LOST. Man’s search to be free was as much of a reoccurring theme in LOST as were Daddy issues, and the debate between science and faith. Much spirituality was present, but always with the scientific background. The idea was to make a person question both.

The Fandom and Darlton

LOST creators Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse a.k.a “Darlton”, engaged in weekly podcasts with their fans answering questions, describing what was just aired. Almost in a delayed banter, the two would read postings from fans and then responded back on the podcast.

Damon Lindelof on the End of the Series

Damon Lindelof reflected on the ending of the LOST series, and about what he had hoped the fans’ reaction would be. “For us, we tried to write the last two and a half hours of the show so that those two feelings would feel like they were the same thing. So, your feeling of saying goodbye to the show – of the show not being around anymore – was actually, literally perfectly paralleling what we were showing you on the screen, if we did that mission accomplished. If not then we blew it and we apologize,” stated Lindelof.

LOST Party

If you had unlimited time and an unlimited budget, of course, you would build a temple, make a foot statue out of paper Mache, dig a hatch, maybe rent some polar bears or an old airplane to have at your LOST themed party, which of course would serve roast boar.

You Can Still Get LOST

You can still watch LOST in its entirety on Netflix. All six seasons are also available on DVD and Blue Ray. The Blue Ray versions have even more mysteries answered and more add-on for the most die-hard of fans.

LOST Had a lot of Character

It is the characters of LOST that makes the show what it is, all of their struggles and growth and how that is tied to all of the other references in the show. It is what they went through, that makes LOST important, the journey rather than the destination.

We Lost a lot of Characters

The series wasn’t afraid to kill off just about anyone. Sometimes they came back, although not as themselves, such was the case with Locke. Sometimes it broke our hearts, as was the case with Charlie. Or it surprised the audience, as with the case of Boone being killed halfway through Season One.

The Series Concluded with a Message that we will Always Have More Questions

We will not know the answers to everything and in the end, that doesn’t matter. We have to let go. When you let go of the questions, you’re left with just the emotions, the imagery, and the clear realization that everything did matter. But who built the statue? It is just a bunch of rocks after all.

Thank You, LOST

Love and hate are two very powerful feelings, two very opposite emotions, and they need each other to exist. This is the main concept of LOST. All people have good and evil in them, and they need each other to exist. And as the show ended each episode, it went to black with the LOST title.