LOST, The Best SF Show on TV

As I write this, I just finished watching the latest episode of LOST, called ‘The Constant’. To all those who poo-pooed the idea that LOST was not science fiction, watch this episode. After hinting and teasing, the writers finally pulled out the stops and gave us a full-bore science fiction episode.

‘The Constant’ is a Desmond-centric episode, which is great because Desmond is a great character, but what set it apart was that, depending on how you look at it, it was either a flash-forward episode, or a flash-back. Why? Because, due to forces only hinted at (of course), Desmond becomes unstuck in time, and oscillates between 1996 and 2004. He must find Penny in both periods (she is the constant) to ground him, or else he will die as his consciousness will be unable to handle the ever increasing time shifts. Yes, we get the paradoxical infomational loops, but they are handled pretty well, although there were a couple of areas that were glossed over. But that’s ok, because:

Not only do we get some heavy duty SF tossed into the show, it only took the writers 4 seasons to smack people over the head with it, we also got a terrific character story centered on Desmond and Penny. Now we see what prompted Penny to start, and continue, her search for Desmond. We see the lengths Desmond will go to try and reconnect with Penny, ultimately ending with a very emotional, and powerful, reunion. This was, by far, the best episode this season and might be the best overall. An awesome job by all those involved.

I won’t say much more then you simply have to watch it for yourself. If you gave up on LOST, I think you owe it to yourself to catch up (fulls eps available on ABC’s website). If you’ve never seen it, all seasons are online at ABC, what are you waiting for? It should be one incredible run to the series finale in 2010.

13 thoughts on “LOST, The Best SF Show on TV”

  1. I was about to rip into last night’s show and say how much I’m getting pissed at the writers! lol

    To each their own, I guess!

    The storyline is getting so twisted and bizzare, I’m sure I’m not the only viewer their about to lose.

  2. >> After hinting and teasing, the writers finally pulled out the stops and gave us a full-bore science fiction episode.

    And it only took three-and-a-half years! An audience’s desperation knows no bounds. ;-)

    I’m so glad I didn’t bother with this show. I suppose, now that the sf cat is out of the bag, I could “catch up” on DVD. But I probably won’t.

  3. Tonight’s episode was profound and satisfying. The symbolism of our need for a ‘constant’, as well as the way the information we learned about Desmond sheds light on things we’ve learned about him since he first appeared on the show, demonstrates what TV can be when it is intelligent, well thought-out, and has a plan that will take the show from beginning to end.

    Then again, maybe they don’t have a plan…they’ve simply become unstuck in time and space.

    I have more reflections on this episode on my blog at http://exploringourmatrix.blogspot.com/2008/02/lost-in-need-of-constant.html

  4. I thought it was one of the finest episodes in this stellar series. On the other hand, the Freckles trial episode before that was one of the weakest.

    After the last few episodes, there’s no longer any doubt that Lost is sci-fi, and with Miles’ character the show also peppers in supernatural elements.

  5. I lost interesting in “Lost” the middle of last season. I came back for the finale and was re-hooked. This season has been great except for Kate’s ep last week. This Desmond ep is the best this season and is certainly in the running for best ep to date. LOVED this ep. Granted, I couldn’t not see the similarities between Back to the Future and the series finale of Star Trek: The Next Generation. But the emotional ending so resonated with me and my wife that it was enormously satisfying. Bravo!

  6. there’s no longer any doubt that Lost is sci-fi, and … the show also peppers in supernatural elements.

    Uh, isn’t that a contradiction in terms? Just wondering…

    In Lost, does getting “unstuck in time” have a rational causation, or is is more along the lines of a Bermuda Triangle disappearance?

  7. To all those who poo-pooed the idea that LOST was not science fiction, watch this episode.

    I think you mean, “To all those who poo-pooed the idea that LOST was science fiction, watch this episode.”

  8. Faraday is a great character, he reminds me of one of my college Physics profs. He wears protection for his body for long term radiation exposure, but doesn’t protect his brain, then can’t remember three cards flipped over. Nice, Doc.

    If I get unstuck in time, could I use SF Signal as my constant? Would you guys do this in a parallel timeline?

    Naw, it would never work.

  9. ‘”>> After hinting and teasing, the writers finally pulled out the stops and gave us a full-bore science fiction episode.

    And it only took three-and-a-half years! An audience’s desperation knows no bounds. ”

    Some of us like an intricate story that has good structure(setup epsodes etc.) and payoff, rather than quick answers that leave us with nothing. I really do not get why some people who do not watch lost hate it so much, most of them have not watched more tha 3 or 4 episodes in no particular order and then proceed to call it dum because they do not know what is going on. I mean look how quick everyone was in early 2007 saying that haeroes had come out and beat Lost at it’s own game (sure do not hear that anymore).I mean watever i guess to each his own, I just do not get the hatred and I’m sure the haters will hate it even more if this season keeps on receiving the critical acclaim it has, goo luck ealing with that.

  10. Agreed, excellent episode.

    Speaking of [SEMI-SPOILER ALERT] time-traveling information, does anyone know the earliest literary reference to a time traveller purposely planting information in the past to be found by a future friend/rescuer/self?

    Asimov’s “The End of Eternity” from 1955 is the earliest occurrence I myself have come across. And as mentioned by Scott above, my first experience with the idea was the penultimate scene of Back to the Future Part II, which blew my 8-year-old mind.

  11. “And it only took three-and-a-half years!”

    First, h8a!

    Second, LOST, in the beginning, wasn’t pushing the SF angle. Rather, they were telling an interesting story with SF/F undertones. As we’ve moved along, we see that the explanations for the island mysteries are going to be SF-nal in nature.

    Which is why:

    “…the show also peppers in supernatural elements. Uh, isn’t that a contradiction in terms?

    Isn’t a contradiction. The supernatural elements only seem that way. They will have some sort of scientific, psuedo or otherwise, explanation. The creators have said as much. And remember, any sufficiently advanced technology, blah blah blah.

    So, yes, LOST is science fiction, despite what the h8as (John) and poo-pooers say.

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