The Trouble with Lost

From a Metafilter commenter on Lost:

That’s one of the problems. A character-based show is not a good character-based show if the psychology of the characters isn’t realistic. And it’s not realistic the way these characters all have a stunning lack of curiosity and are so easily thwarted every time they ask a question.

Why has not ONE person asked “Lock” to explain exactly what he is and where he came from? Of course, if they did, he would say, “That’s not what you really want to know, is it? What don’t you ask the question you really want to know?” Or he’d say, “Let me show you something,” which would lead to a long walk through the jungle ending in some other mystery. Or he WOULD be about to answer, when suddenly there would be a huge explosion, and after the explosion, the character who asked would completely forget that he’d asked. I don’t believe it.

These are all examples of the writers bending psychology (past the breaking point, in my opinion) in the service of plot. And once you do that — once you start saying, “Well, we have to do that — otherwise we’d be giving away the secrets” — then you’re NOT telling just a character story. You are telling a story in which your characters are subordinate to your plot. And if your plot is so important that it’s perverting your characters, then ADMIT that it’s important and tie up its loose ends.

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Gay Hoosier Taurus INFJ ex-playwright pianist gymbunny published author in San Francisco. Tw · Fb