in defense of the lost ending

(Welcome to The Unpopular Opinion, a series where a writer goes to the defense of a much-maligned film or TV show, or sets their sights on something seemingly beloved by all. In this edition: a defense of the final season of the ABC TV series LOST.)

LOST was once at the pinnacle of the early Golden Age of TV. Ambitious, awe-inspiring, and frustrating, it brought forth a new age in serialized primetime television and was perhaps the last great TV show to command the attention of audiences across the country before streaming and prestige cable shows dispersed them.

You remember those glory days, right? The connective flashbacks, the masterful character work, the scavenger hunt for hints, the jaw-dropping cliffhangers. It was like nothing on TV. And it ended seven years ago today, airing its series finale on May 23, 2010.

So it pains me that LOST, one of the most exciting and daring sci-fi TV series — and one of my favorite shows of all time — is met with derision because of its final season. To be sure, it’s an oddly opaque finale for a show that until then, had operated in grays — espousing realist and borderline nihilistic philosophies that called into question the nature and morals of man. But one of the charms of LOST was that it never tried to answer these questions. Yes, it bludgeoned you over the head with that “man of science, man of faith” debate between Jack Shephard (Matthew Fox) and John Locke (Terry O’Quinn), but neither were able to ever really win the upper hand.

The finale changed that. The answer, it seemed to say, was faith. And in a show that depended so heavily on sci-fi tropes and staples, this switcheroo understandably angered people.

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Amazon 2015 pilots

Since the fall season has traditionally been when networks debut their biggest new series for the year, Amazon Studios has consistently followed suit by revealing a batch of new pilots, and their slate for the 2015-2016 television season has just been unveiled.

The Amazon 2015 pilots include hopeful new shows from the likes of Shane Black (director Iron Man 3, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang), Sacha Baron Cohen (writer and star Borat), Tim Blake Nelson (director of Leaves of Grass and O) and starring talents such as Christina Ricci, Tig Notaro, Terry O’Quinn and more. And as usual, it will be Amazon customers who will watch and provide feedback on these shows to help determine which ones get a full series order.

Get much more details descriptions of the new Amazon 2015 pilots after the jump! Read More »

When Joe Johnston‘s Captain America: The First Avenger landed this summer and turned into a reasonable hit, one hope held by comic fans was that Johnston’s 1991 adaptation of Dave Stevens‘ ’30s-set comic The Rocketeer would finally be given a Blu-ray release.

The Disney film was a flop in the summer of ’91 but has earned a cult following thanks to Johnston’s lively use of ’30s action/adventure serial style and the simple appeal of a mechanic who becomes a sort of hero when a jetpack falls into his possession.

Disney talked about a sequel before the film flopped, and Johnston says he still wants to make another film featuring the characters. A sequel isn’t likely to happen if no one knows about the original film, however. The lackluster DVD release Disney once gave The Rocketeer hasn’t done anything to earn the film new fans. But in December the movie will hit Blu-ray, giving people a chance to get a good look at the movie that was among the first wave of modern comic book adaptations. Read More »

‘Super 8′ Easter Eggs

JJ Abrams is obsessed with mystery, and often hides a lot of easter eggs in his films and tv shows. In the past we’ve chronicled easter eggs in the Pixar movies Toy Story 3, WALL-E, and Up, as well as some other films. So it should come as no surprise that his latest movie, Super 8, is also packed with fun hidden bits.

For example: Did you know that Leonard Nimoy appars in the movie? How about that another one of JJ’s Star Trek stars plays “the monster”? Did you spot the references to Lost, Alias and The Twilight Zone? After the jump I’ve compiled 16 hidden easter eggs which can be found in the movie.

Be warned: for those of you who havent seen the film yet, the following article may contain spoilers.

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Earlier this week the rather promising story cropped up that J.J. Abrams and collaborators Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec were pitching networks on a new show with comedy elements that would star Michael Emerson and Terry O’Quinn from Lost? Well, NBC has gone for the show. There’s no season order yet (way too early for that) but this is a step closer to the project hitting the air.

According to Vulture, NBC got the rights to the show and made a pilot commitment. The title we’d reported before, Odd Jobs, was the temp title, but has been left behind. As far as we know, this would still have Emerson and O’Quinn playing former black ops agents, possibly in a suburban setting. Appelbaum and Nemec are the writers and exec producers, with Abrams and Bryan Burk also exec producing. More on this one as we get it.

emerson-oquinn

Briefly: I’m convinced that J.J. Abrams has a closet packed with Abrams clones, as that is the only possible explanation for the steady stream of news we’ve had lately about new projects from the guy. The latest is a report of an Abrams pitch for a new TV show that would reunite Lost‘s Terry O’Quinn and Michael Emerson, aka John Locke and Benjamin Linus, as ‘former black-ops agents.’

Vulture has the report, saying that Abrams and collaborators Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec were pitching a ‘comedic drama’ tentatively called Odd Jobs, which would bring together Emerson and O’Quinn as the agents. This is just the latest news of a possible show featuring the two actors, which began in February when the pair said they were working on a possible post-Lost project. (One possibility mentioned then was a show that would feature the two as ‘suburban hit men,’ which could have become this setup.) At this point it is just a possibility, but it’s a ramping up of several months’ worth of rumor, so stay tuned…