Wednesday, February 17, 2010


And the sad thing is, I don't care.

Yes, it's true. I'm hooked on LOST.

But the question is, why?

I keep asking myself that. Why do I keep coming back? It's annoyed me no end that they cut off the season in half the time as other series. It's annoyed me that every time I think there's an answer, there are two more questions. And it's annoying that they seem to have thrown everything but the kitchen sink in there (that would be because the black cloud monster probably bashed the kitchen sink to smithereens).

They've annoyed me with this whole time travel thing and jumping into the "what if" situation of the castaways being back in the real world without giving me answers.

Yet I still keep coming back.

How do they do that?

Why is this working? Why has this show become the phenomenon it has? They're giving us crumbs and yet we still come back for one more tiny little miniscule morsel. And we enjoy the ride.

Since I've been writing for publication, I've analyzed movies and books and shows with an eye to both craft and entertainment. Sometimes the craft issues ruin a movie for me (Avatar - oh, the technology was wonderful but that story!!!). Other times, I could care less because it's kept me so entertained that I don't even notice. (And I can't even come up with one because the enjoyment factor outweighs whatever other issues it has).

I'm still not sure about LOST. The entertainment factor is there (and, hello? Just give me Sawyer in an open shirt and you've hooked me). The hooks are all over the place, so that's grabbed my attention. I'm wondering about the storyline though. The writers have so many plot threads and twists and loose ends and themes that I'm really hoping they can tie everything up satisfactorily - and without a Dallas/JR-like twist.

The thing is, I'm willing to go with it since the ride is so much fun, even if it is frustrating.

But they better not let me down. I've invested how many hours/nights/years in this series; if the ending is awful you can bet I'll be very leery of spending time on something else created by Jeffrey Lieber, J.J. Adams and Damon Lindelof.

If it's good, I plan to buy the entire series on DVD and have a LOST extended weekend, complete with pizza delivery and maybe some Asti.

Which makes me think, of course, about my own stories. Do I create a story compelling enough to keep readers coming back? (Thankfully, my reviews for the series say that I do.) Each time I write another one, the same thoughts go through my head: are the hooks there? Are the characters people readers will care about? Am I telling the story in the best possible way? And, does the ending deliver everything the reader wants when he/she picks up the story in the first place?

So, are you LOST? Is there another show/movie/series you're willing to follow along? Have any lost you and, if so, why?


  1. Not me, Judi! Don't have time for tv shows, only on occasion do I have time for a movie. A long time ago I watched Survivor, but figured after a couple of seasons it was rigged and gave up on the whole thing. :) But mainly, it's just that I don't have the time to watch tv, even though many of my friends are hooked on Lost. I have no inclination to even check it out! In my spare time, which is rare, I'd rather read a good romance! :)

  2. The only shows I watch are NCIS and TopGear. NCIS (the original one, not NCIS LA) has great characters, amazing writing, and lots of humor. Plus, my daughter received the first six seasons for a birthday present. If the whole dance thing doesn't work out for her, she want's to be Abby. Me, I just want one date with Mark Harmon. *grin*

    TopGear is just awesome. It has everything I need. It's pee-your-pants funny, has fabulous races, and it gives me my Bugatti fix. If I could trade places with anyone, it would be Jeremy Clarkson or Richard Hammond. They have the best job in the world. I guess I have the second best. Still, Hammond got to race a fighter jet in a Buggatti. I only get to write about stuff like that.

  3. I did the Lost thing for about 2 seasons, then it got to be too much for me. Now it's Dancing with the Stars, Castle, NCIS, CSI, all three, and I found Spartacus on STARS (I watch it through Netflix), it's not bad, so far. Bodacious.

    I absolutely adore Castle, it is so funny and trying to guess who done it before they do, can be a challenge.

    Not having a TV only Internet, sometimes, can make keeping up with a TV show a challenge, but hey, that's my middle name. And if you believe that one I have some swampland in New Mexico to sell ya, and a bridge in Brooklyn too. LOL ;)

  4. I watch some of the shows on Food Network, like Throwdown and Dinner Impossible. I don't have time to watch much TV, so I can't keep up with shows with plotlines.

  5. I was a huge Lost fan when it first started, but I think during season 3, I missed a few episodes and felt so out of the loop that I never jumped back on. But from time to time, even though I have NO idea what's going on, I'll watch it!

    I've been sucked into Gossip Girl, but the storyline is SO ridiculous now... Even the rich and spoiled can't do the things they do on that show!

    And I love all of those crazy "reality" shows on Bravo!

    But in regards, to books, I think for series, it's incredibly important to remember what attracted readers in the first place. And I think all of our authors have done a great job at bringing people back for something new and interesting, but still maintaing the appeal of the original book.

  6. I am TOTALLY Lost!! I have been since the beginning. I have stuck with it even during Season 2 when it really got weird (and that is saying something since "weird" is what Lost is all about).

    I learned somewhere mid-season 2 to not try to figure any of it out. Once I let go of frustrating over the puzzle pieces, it has been an enjoyable viewing experience. This is not normally like me as I am one of those gals who likes tidy stories that flow nicely. Any mysteries better be explained! But Lost is a whole different enchilada! Frankly, I think we are going to be left with way more questions than answers when the series ends in a few months. But part of the fun, for me, has been the wild ride! These are characters we care about, even when they are driving us crazy. Heck, I even care about Ben! LOL!

    Thanks for a great post Judi. Glad to know I am not the only Lostie on the blog!!

  7. I'm not a big fan of television in general, since I don't have the attention span for it. A friend tried to get me to watch LOST with her a couple times, but I just got confused (and a little dizzy from staring and all that beautiful man-flesh).

    I do know what you mean though about books that seem to break all the rules about engaging the reader and making sense, yet somehow, I can't seem to put them down. Just read one of those a few weeks ago, as a matter of fact.

    Great blog!


  8. Nope, not me. Like Terry, I don't have time for TV, but I hear about these things through friends and from reading the occasional issue of EW. Seems like every time I decide to watch a little TV, there's nothing on but Food Network, and watching that can be fatal to your diet!

  9. LOST has been a must see from the first episode. Same with Supernatural, Burn Notice, and many others.

    For LOST it's the idea of what's gone on on the island that keeps me watching.

  10. Terry - I've been watching Survivor faithfully since the second season. I don't think it's rigged, but I'm dying for someone to do a doctoral thesis on people's behaviors on that show! And those Thursday nights are sacred in my house.

    Robin - TopGear? Hmmm, must check that one out. In all my spare (choke) time!

    Jessica - really? No tv? I don't think I'm quite ready to give up the big screen yet, but I do watch a few things on line if I forget to record them.

    Shana - see, that's why the reality shows hook me. You can pretty much get caught up with one show.

    Danielle - the one show that I absolutely cannot miss that I didn't mention on the blog post is Real Housewives. That thing is such a wreck - be it Atlanta, NJ, NY, CA... doesn't matter. Women behaving badly KNOWING there's a camera on them. Honestly, what ARE they thinking? But I can't look away.

  11. Sharon - Yay! Be LOST with me! I do love it, but you're right. You have to stop trying to figure it out. But I really do think I'm going to get all the episodes on DVD when it's all over and go back and watch it from the beginning knowing everything. I have to see how they did it.

    Hi Tawna - yeah, if you don't have a long enough attention span, LOST isn't going to do it for you. My husband is the same way. He even leaves the room when the rest of us are watching it because it drives him nuts that they keep raising questions.

    Cheryl - There are some shows I purposely don't watch b/c I don't want to get hooked on them. I have so little time as it is. Most of these I watch on the DVR in one sitting while I'm signing bookmarks or collating stuff.

    Linda - and now with that cave that "Locke" took Sawyer to... now what????!!!

  12. I LOVED the first season of Lost! I was so hooked that I even bought the DVD set, something I'd never done before and haven't sense. Then came season 2 and... URG! What a total waste of time.

    Now I watch for one reason, and one reason only -- Josh Holloway! YUMMMMY! And the smart aleck things that come from his mouth are fun too. About half way through the first season, my friends and I started calling him "Angry Dimples." :-)

    The only other TV show I've watched with any regularity is Law&Order SVU. That's my son's favorite and it always seems to be on some channel. Oh, and I've seen a few episode of Amazing Race to get travel ideas.


  13. Judi

    I watch very little TV these days I am either on the net of reading I have a really big TBR pile and they pull me in all the time and keep me coming back to my books the hardest decision that I have is on deciding what book to read next LOL.
    I have such wonderful adventures and visit so many places through the books that I read and when I read a book I kinda have a TV sreen in my head LOL.

    Have Fun

  14. Ah, Cindy - you just reminded me that Amazing Race either has started or will start soon. Must go check!

    Helen - please please please don't let tv keep you from that TBR! We authors love readers with TBR piles! :)

  15. Woo hoo! Just found out that there's a Kindle version of Wild Blue Under. Showed up today.

    And B&N has an eFormat of Catch of a Lifetime.

    And, yes, I did buy and download them both to my iPhone. :)

  16. I'm with Terry - television is the one thing I pretty much cut out of my life when I started to write...with one sad exception. I'm ridiculously addicted to American Idol. I know it's awful, but once they get down to twelve "kids," I get totally caught up in the personalities and can't miss an episode. It's definitely popcorn for the mind!
    My husband likes LOST, though. He watched the whole thing on Hulu, one episode after another, which is probably a good way to keep track of the story. My short-term memory could never keep track of all the details, hints and clues week to week!

  17. It's on Hulu?? Episode after episode?

    Uh oh. That was info I did NOT need. :)

    And I like American Idol, too.

    Damn these producers and their catchy reality stuff!

  18. I completely agree!!!

    I think one of the reasons we love it despite its aggravations is the same reason a lot of people love our books--it's the characters!

    Take away all that crazy cr*p, put the same people on the island. Watch them survive despite the odds, and it would still be worth
    watching. It would just be a slower pace and wouldn't last as many seasons.


  19. I am a long time faithful fan of LOST. The show captivated me from the first episode and like other diehards...I hung in there even through the worst of times (yes, the infamous Season Two). I practically cry when I hear someone quit watching after that got so much better after they changed the writers!

    I dread the end of this season, it'll be a landmark event for me. The only other shows I remember having this affect on me are MASH and FRIENDS. I was so sad to see them go...

  20. What got LOST was yesterday. I'm just reading this now.

    I'm not a "lost " fan. I expect it's temperament thing. In fact, I don't watch a lot of TV at all. For a program to hold me through interminable commercial breaks* I must be captivated by the characters, not the story.

    The only program I make a point to sit down and watch is NCIS.

  21. Ha! I soooooooo hear you, MM. I'm having one of those days today. Lots getting done, but none of what I really wanted...

  22. My hopeless addiction: reality shows. I know they're choreographed, but the personalities are what always intrigues me. Fun post, Judi!