February 1st, 2007 11:59 EST
Lost Fans call for an End to the show
Hollywood, CA (rushprnews)- The recent tsunami news that producers and ABC were planning to end the hit series “Lost” have produced a twist worthy of the show itself: avid fans wanting it to end already.
Some viewers around the world have launched a petition campaign to keep it going. Others quickly chimed in that they agreed with originators who call for closure before stagnation. One member of “The Fuselage,” which is run by the creative team behind the show, stated “I agree - it's the producers who should make the decision, not ABC.”
“If you look at the history of mythological shows on television, such as the ‘X-Files’ and ‘Twin Peaks,’ people think that they ran longer than they should have,” said show producer Carlton Cuse. “There is an underlying feeling among viewers that the writers don’t know either where ‘Lost’ is going. Many believe that a timeline would help not only the writers with focus but also the fans knowing that questions will be answered.”
Cuse and fellow producer Damon Lindelof noted that even "Harry Potter" author J.K. Rowling has said her series will end with its seventh book. "It gives everybody a sort of feeling of certainty that that story is driving toward a conclusion."
Ratings have been strong for most of the shows three seasons, though they have slightly dipped so far this season. It is not the numbers however, but a creative decision to climax the plotlines that may put the show creators in the category of “Others” and gave them a bad guy wrap with viewers. Still, some fans hope to keep the flame ablaze by seeing the series turned into a movie as recently proposed by the producers, “They are planning to release a full-length movie shortly after the end of the show, focusing mostly on the main cast of characters.
Without any kind of pressure from the network, the decision to end the show comes solely from producers’ team, Lindelof admitting to Hollywood Today that “the only pressure that we’ve ever received from them is “Answer some (expletive) question!”
The blog forums on the Seattle Post-Intelligencer mostly lavished love but included opinions like “Lost is manifesting all the 'end of life' symptoms that brought down the X-Files, i.e. too much 'mythology', conspiracy, backstory and convolution to provide a cohesive narrative” and “I need answers. I quit watching after I got no answers. My wife still loves it, but I need to know what monsters are creeping on the island.”
Many fans are demanding quality over quantity, “They've mentioned 100 episodes, 4 or 5 seasons, and that sounds about right to me, I don’t want the show to drag on and on,” posted a fan on the message board to applause from others.
Still, why would the network and the producers want to end a money making machine? The answer could lay in its beginning and intensity.
Lindelof stated” this show requires, you know, a very intense and ongoing commitment”. Unlike other shows like “ 24,” which is serialized and where you can jump on any season and follow the plot, “Lost” is very hard to jump back on,” Cuse adding “ Obviously the flashbacks is one of the challenge of the show, and I think it’s one of the reasons that the show ultimately does need an endpoint. Nothing is as engaging as finding out that Hurley is a lottery winner.” You can only go that far with flashbacks, “Kate’s 4th grade spelling bee or Sawyer’s prom might be a bit much for the actors” stated Lindelof. And focusing on upcoming subplots even Evangeline Lilly seems to agree that enough is enough, wondering when asked if she will end up with Jack or Sawyer, “I’ll end up with whatever serves the story best”. And Josh Holloway succinctly added “best sex.”
Still the fan base who wants to see the show remain on-the-air is strong enough to be an influential factor. From the Hawaiian front, Ryan Ozawa’s podcast notes its most popular podcast, “The Transmission,” reached No. 7 on the iTunes Top 10 list, joining more established major podcasts such as ESPN, CBS and NPR, explained “On one episode, cast member Jorge Garcia called into the podcast show and audience went wild. With that kind of enthusiasm, I can’t see the fans letting the show go anytime soon”.
“Lost” for many has become more than a television show but a phenomena – or at least a cottage industry. Tour companies are adding tours of “Lost” filming locations; major PR firms are planning a media trip to “Lost” locations. In fact, if not for solid ratings, “Lost” would be considered a cult show based on all the websites that it has inspired even before it was actually aired and for the passion of the fans, instead make it a mainstream hit.
LostHatch.com even has a countdown timer till the next episode and 92% of the readers voted the show should stay on the air past the 100-show mark “even if it waters down the show.” The other 8% said it should stay on the air “even if it’s just the logo for an hour.”
In the end, we shall see which side wins – the one that supports creative closure or the one that produces millions in annual ad revenue.
Anne Howard, writer and publicist at www.hollywoodtoday.net