Lost: The Complete Sixth Season (UK - BD)
Marcus says goodbye to the island and wishes we could all go back... again...
The Final Season
After five great seasons dealing with the island, the others, trying to get rescued, being rescued, going back to the island and time travel (yes non Lost watchers, there was time travel), season five left us on a cliff-hanger that with a few minor tweaks on the build up to its finale could very well have been the way the show ended entirely. With Juliette setting off the Swan hatch atomic bomb and Lost fading to white, there was just about enough to make it the dramatic end that Lost had always promised to go out on, with just about enough clues to sort of piece the rest of the threads together. But Lost being Lost there was a final season to come, and when season six arrived it was purposely structured for us to be going in blind.
Weirdly season six doesn’t exactly hit the ground running. It was still very much Lost, but considering this is the season that had to tell us everything, the storytelling methods really seemed to be taking too much time to get to the point and writers seemed to be playing it awfully close to the collective chests and with the whole new element of a flash sideways introduced (which has most of our characters in a slightly alternative reality where the infamous flight 815 landed safely in LAX) there seemed to be more questions raised than answers were answered.
However, on island, it was a different story. Further clues as well as full blown answers were coming at us thick and fast, with a regular role for long spoken about but rarely seen Jacob and the Man in Black bringing all sorts of new angles to the table. The Lost mythology seemed to be coming to a close with all the elements in place and while there was way too much time spent with the temple-others (which frankly was an element that was neither explained enough or seemed to have any real worth) the second half of the season really started getting down to the nitty-gritty.
Now here is where I have to put the brakes on a bit I guess as I know there’s probably a fair few of you out there that haven’t seen this finale season yet and waiting for this boxset (honestly I don’t know how you did it) I’ll try to keep this as vague as possible and spoiler free, though I’d imagine you’ll want to avoid the comments at the bottom of this review as the subject of how Lost ended and more so how satisfied people were with it will no doubt involve plenty of spoilers.
I’ll say it right now, and I can do this after having re-watched the entire six seasons over the last few months, I was completely satisfied with how Lost ended despite a few of the more important mysteries being left to the viewers' interpretation as opposed to answered head on. The issue of ‘the candidates’ made the final season all about the characters connections to the island and I dug the hell out of that. The episode where Jacob sits around the campfire and has a chat with the remaining Losties honestly felt like one of the most important moments in TV history for me and it was played beautifully by all involved. The island's backstory via Richard and more importantly Jacob and the Man in Black were exactly what the final season needed to add more weight to the entire show's run and also, Terry O’Quinn’s performance as, let’s say Un-Locke, was consistently compelling.
On a side note, I’m not saying there weren’t clunkers as well. The explanation of ‘the whispers’ is probably the biggest cop out that Lost is guilty of. None of it rang true to what we’ve seen and really that was a little disappointing. I’m not entirely sure what Claire was doing in season six either, other than making up the numbers. Speaking of numbers, I was initially pissed off with the ‘Jacob had a thing about numbers’ explanation about those, but after the entire season re-watch I like that really the only person those numbers had any importance to was Hurley and really their combination of 4 8 15 16 23 42 wasn’t a thing the show balanced on, but was a very cool set of coincidences that tied lots of elements together in the Lost universe, even if no single character really knew it.
Then there’s the flash sideways, which really leads us onto the finale as a whole because other than a few hints at what the hell was going on with the alternate reality, the mysteries of it were held off right until the last minute. It’s hard to write about this with a spoiler free angle but despite the many different views on the final Lost episodes, I loved it. Adored it even (yes even the Sayid/ Shannon bit—though that took a whole re-watch of seasons one and two to finally swallow). By the time the finale came around on the original TV run it had become the most exciting entertainment moment of the year in my household. Lost had been a huge element of the family viewing for five years now but come finale day the entire family were itching for those final two hours of Lost time.
Despite watching a shit ton of TV and movies, my excitement levels for these sorts of things really don’t go up this high unless there’s a new Star Wars movie on the way or there's a new instalment of a franchise I love (that hasn’t hit the skids yet, not that there’s many of them left). Because of that, the Lost finale had me in its grasp with every frame, delivering thrills (tunnel of light), chills (Kate telling Jack she’s missed him) as well as the usual kick ass moments that Lost thrives on (Jack’s flying punch and the entire Kurosawa-esq face off on the rocks). But even more than that, Lost achieved what no movie or TV show has achieved for me since E.T. in 1983. It made me shed a tear. I don’t know about you guys, but come the end of that episode, when all had been revealed and the feel good/ feel sad wrap ups began to flood in, I suddenly got the feeling that this was really it. It was over and trying desperately not to go into spoiler territory, when Jack walks through the bamboo I just lost it. The imagery, the score, the, the... damn it spoilers!! Let’s just say the promise of the show going out on a high was achieved and frankly I can’t think of another show that I’ve felt this attached to.
As with the previous Lost Blu-rays, the jungle and beach exteriors of the show look lavish in the warm sun and the colour presentation is absolute perfection. Black levels are nice and deep throughout the entire sixth season and even though the image suffers the tiniest bit in the dark scenes with a higher level of grain it's really nothing to complain about.
Textures and finer details are top notch as usual, with characters' stubble looking so sharp you could almost reach out and pluck it off of their faces and clothing elements looking so good you could find yourself having the urge to iron the creases out of the others' ragged clothes.
Like many high end shows, Lost just excels in its beautifully captured HD visuals and with its natural exterior light it outshines its more set based peers in regards to its natural feel. It sure is a pretty looking show on Blu-ray.
Maybe it’s because of the dramatic undertone of the final season but Lost’s audio elements seem to be firing on all cylinders here. Within any given moment, the strong dialogue can blend perfectly with Michael Giacchino’s exceptional score, only to be filled out with the natural sounds of the jungle or sound effects.
The island has always had a strong presence within the show and the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track really shows it off here. Everything feels alive and if you stop and listen to what’s going on in the track beside the dialogue, especially in the uber answers episode 'Across the Sea' it’s quite impressive just how much is going on.
To leave the audio segment without mentioning the finale’s incredible powerful score would be a crime and it really does provide a massive emotional punch to the closing scenes. How it strengthens the overall wrapping up of events really shines here and when compared to the original TV broadcast, it really ups the ante and it easily matches any big budget movies.
Not sure if i mentioned it in my review for season four, but man I love those little Oceanic symbols as the menus load up. Anyway, disc one opens with ‘8:15 a Crash Course’ (08:15 HD) giving you an update on what's happened on Lost before starting the season. These are always great, but seriously, after season four and the time travel, explaining this in eight minutes and fifteen seconds isn’t actually possible.
The big draw is the epilogue mini episode ‘The Man in Charge’ (11:55 HD) which, while remaining in spoiler sensitive territory, gets better on repeat viewings. The first time I saw it was convinced it felt like a pilot for a further Lost spin off (and this sort of bummed me out that it actually wasn't), but after a few watches I’m happy it feels like a tie up of loose ends and really a nice extra segment of Lost, and more importantly one final clue/ conclusion to what the deal was with Walt.
‘Crafting a Final Season’ (38:33 HD) is a great overview of the last season with key points spoken about by cast and crew and a very simple look at the flash sideways, deaths and the final steps towards the conclusion.
‘A Hero’s Journey’ (08:57 HD) is a look at the key steps in Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey and how it related to Lost and its multiple heroes.
‘See You in Another Life Brotha’ (08:36) is a whistle stop tour of the flash sideways with very little in the way of reveal or insight and more a simple sentence or two at what they were for (again spoilers have my hands tied to go further).
'The Bloopers' (04:09 HD) is full of little gems and the ‘Lost University’ allows you to go online and access the site that’s been on the internet since just before season six began. There’s some good stuff on there for Lost fans. Check it out.
The usual ‘Lost on Location’ (28:40 HD) selection concentrates on six episodes and has the usual footage of how episodes are put together by the crew and as always features some fun little moments and interesting film making challenges on a TV schedule.
The nine deleted scenes (09:39 SD) don’t really offer up a lot, but have a nice nod at what gets Desmond out of a hole.
As for the commentaries, there are only the three. The first two being on ‘Dr Linus’ (with producers/writers Edward Letris and Adam Horowitz and actor Michael Emerson) and ‘Ab Aeterno’ (with writers Melinda Hsu Taylor and Gregory Nations actor Nestor Carbonell) both of which are full of great, enjoyable tales but the big one is on the key episode ‘Across the Sea’ with Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse and quite frankly it’s brilliant. The playful pair aren’t afraid to focus on what the fans didn’t like about the episode and even though they keep to their usual coyness and refuse to lay out the specifics, they really go all out at hinting at the many elements that could have deeper meanings and even heavily hint that ‘Mother’ may be more than she seems. I really felt like they confirmed a lot of my own theories on the Lost ‘rules’ and the elements this episode confronts and that made it a great commentary to listen to. In fact for a Lost fan this is a pretty strong reason in itself to buy the entire boxed set.
Okay, so you all know by now that I love Lost, so this review is more than glowing, but how to wrap it up (especially considering I could speak about the subject of Lost all day)? Well knowing that there was a whole lot of backlash to the decisions made with this final season, I’ll say this: Lost has always been about interpretation. From episode one, the audience were left to use their own thoughts and beliefs to determine what they thought was going on. The show offered up a great cast of characters and their journeys through the entire six seasons were as thrilling as they were personal.
It’s easy to say that the island's mysteries were not all answered, but honestly if you’re a Lost fan, you just can’t be that brash about it. Throughout the entire run there has been more than enough to piece the vast majority of it together. Really, go back—it's all there to make of what you will in the larger picture, even for the big one people kicked off about (that being Walt—though The Man in Charge epilogue helped that along).
Once again, it’s going to come down to your own interpretation of events, so those looking for a box of answers wrapped up in a Blu-ray case will probably walk away disappointed. For those wanting to see the last chapter of these beloved Losties' stories and having the fun of piecing together what you think happened over the last six years... well, I don’t know who I’m aiming that last sentence at because you've already ordered the final season of one of the best TV shows that the box of light in the corner of your room can offer.
* Note: The above images are taken from the Blu-ray release and resized for the page. Full-resolution captures are available by clicking individual images, but due to .jpg compression they are not necessarily representative of the quality of the transfer.
Review by Marcus Doidge
Suitable only for persons of 15 years and over
Release Date: 13th September 2010
Disc Type: Blu-ray Disc
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 English, Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo English
Subtitles: English, Enhligh for the Hearing Impared, Spanish, French, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Icelandic
Extras: Commentaries, Featurettes, Deleted Scnes, Bloopers, Lost University.
Easter Egg: No
Cast: Matthew Fox, Evangeline Lilly, Terry O'Quinn, Josh Holloway
Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama and Thriller
Length: 795 minutes
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