My major problem with the new season of Lost is best explained via the clip found at the 6:00 mark of this remarkably thorough anthology of time-travel movies — why yes, it’s from Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, the part where they decide to go back in time and hide car keys behind a bush so that in the future, i.e. now, they’ll have car keys, and then lo, they look behind the bush and there’s the car keys, because in the future they go back to the past to change the present.
This is essentially what Lost has become now, except more confusing and with actors far less ebullient than Keanu Reeves. Though I love this show and will continue to watch it religiously, it must be said that this new unstuck-in-time situation is utterly confounding, and leads to the unfortunate trend of having to leap on the Internet immediately after every episode if you wish to have the slightest idea what’s going on, who Theresa is/was/will be (mentioned obliquely in season 1, episode 19, run date March 30, 2005), etc. Poring over such recaps/theories/explanations etc. can be great fun (S/FJ may have missed his calling) and a fantastic work impediment, but the growing mountain of data and cross-reference and space/time paradox buggery all but insures that this show is bound for a ridiculously unsatisfying and flabbergasting conclusion that’ll make the Sopranos finale look like [placeholder until I think of a truly satisfying TV-show finale]. Don’t stop believing, I suppose.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 29, 2009