I confess to sometimes reading the end of a suspenseful novel when I’m only part-way through it. That way, I know where the novel is ultimately headed, and I can stop guessing as the plot twists this way and that, and I can enjoy how the author constructed the novel with subtle clues hidden amongst the ambiguous details. I really hate surprise endings anyway. They usually make me feel irritated with the author— as though I have been tricked, and that the author is mocking me.
Sometimes a quick peek at the last chapter also lets me know that I don’t need to waste one more minute reading that particular book: Hooray! I can spend my precious time elsewhere! Some books, of course, are such that by the second chapter, I know that I need not read any further and I don’t care a fig about how the book ends!
I often use the same approach with a TV series. I was an avid fan of ER during its first couple of seasons. But when ER stopped being a medical show and became a soap opera about the sordid love affairs of the doctors and nurses, I stopped watching. However, I did come back to watch the episode about the death of Dr. Green. By that time, the cast had almost completely changed except for Dr. Green. I did not return to watch the final episode of the series.
I’m sure you have guessed where this is heading:
I saw only the first few episodes or so of the first season of LOST. It looked promising. But then things transpired on the island that were, well, preposterous. Actually, that there were any survivors at all after the crash was preposterous. I wanted to suspend my disbelief, but I was not entirely successful. From the premise being preposterous, things went rapidly down hill from there. I don’t even remember what it was that turned me away and I quit watching. Knowing my intolerance for outlandish impossibilities, it could have been any number of things.
However, when I heard that the final episode of LOST was going to be broadcast, I thought I might watch just to see how the story ends. The fate of the crash victims needed some closure in my mind. And I was sure that there would be discussions amongst friends and family about it. I didn’t want to be entirely out of the loop.
So, I watched the retrospective and the final episode. The retrospective, while not quite a summary, did let me know that I had made a very wise choice when I stopped watching early on. I would have had no patience with most of it. I can groan “give me a break” only so many times …. That the script writers themselves were LOST is most obvious.
So. The end of it…. I suppose it meant that they had really died as they should have from the crash. What followed, on the island, was some kind of limbo or purgatory experience, until they were “ready” to move on to the afterlife. Supposedly, they redeemed themselves through their various choices and actions while on the island.
Good enough. I am glad that I skipped to the last chapter. The middle chapters would have made me cranky. I am glad of the time not LOST in watching it in its entirety.