24 May 10 | Chad W. Post

So the other week when I joked about how Lexiophiles referred to Three Percent as containing “random, unrelated informational debris”? Well, this post sort of proves their point . . .

At 2:30am this morning, I finished what I think will be the last real piece that I’ll ever write about Lost. (Not counting this of course.) It just went live here on Speakeasy, the Wall Street Journal‘s culture blog. I tried to say all that I wanted to say there about the metaphysics of Lost, why the finale was ultimately satisfying (or not—this is a tease to try and drive traffic), etc.

But after thinking about this a bit more—like during the 3 hours I was able to sleep this morning—and reading more complaints from Facebook friends, I have two-three things I want to add. And following the “random, unrelated” motif, I’m just going to throw these down bullet-point style with very little context. Lost fans will understand (hopefully), everyone else can move onto the next post.

  • One of the big complaints has been that the Lost creators didn’t explain everything. But really? I’m sure there are loose ends (nothing of significance comes to mind, although some dissenter out there could jump all over this statement), but I think what’s really under dispute here is how complete an explanation has to be. There is no such thing as complete knowledge, and I don’t know why anyone would expect such a thing from a work of art.
  • Tied into that, one of my friends complained that the creators had originally stated that everything could be explained scientifically, which didn’t really come true. That’s sort of how life works though, isn’t it? There are different types of knowledge that inform and direct different types of situations. And re: science—I think that claim was made during season 2, when a very plausible scientific explanation for why the plane crashed. (Namely, Desmond not pressing the button therefore causing a magnetic-energy event.) Different seasons worked with different types of knowledge, moving from realistic, exploratory ways of knowing to something that was way more spiritual. I’m totally OK with this, since I don’t think the world can be explained by one set of facts or beliefs.
  • And tying into that point, it seems to me that each season operated as its own sort of event, posing its own set of questions, and resolving them in some satisfactory way that still left open questions for the future. Which is genius. Like the time travel season had its own set of questions that had fuck-all to do with this year’s mytho-religious bent.
  • It’s great that ending and all, this is still way open to interpretation. What really happened in the church? Was that just Jack’s projections? We could debate that for hours, but beyond that moment, it’s interesting to comb back over other bits of the show and discuss what they might mean. This is what all works of art aim to do (in my opinion), and I’m glad Lost didn’t cop out.

That’s it. Done. On to new informational debris.

tags: ,

Comments are disabled for this article.
....
Berlin
Berlin by Aleš Šteger
Reviewed by Vincent Francone

Randall Jarrell once argued a point that I will now paraphrase and, in doing so, over-simplify: As a culture, we need book criticism, not book reviews. I sort of agree, but let’s not get into all of that. Having finished. . .

Read More >

The Gun
The Gun by Fuminori Nakamura
Reviewed by Will Eells

Like any good potboiler worth its salt, Fuminori Nakamura’s The Gun wastes no time setting up its premise: “Last night, I found a gun. Or you could say I stole it, I’m not really sure. I’ve never seen something so. . .

Read More >

This Place Holds No Fear
This Place Holds No Fear by Monika Held
Reviewed by Lori Feathers

Heiner Resseck, the protagonist in Monika Held’s thought-provoking, first novel, This Place Holds No Fear, intentionally re-lives his past every hour of every day. His memories are his treasures, more dear than the present or future. What wonderful past eclipses. . .

Read More >

The Room
The Room by Jonas Karlsson
Reviewed by Peter Biello

If you’ve ever worked in a corporate office, you’ve likely heard the phrase, “Perception is reality.” To Björn, the office worker who narrates Jonas Karlsson’s novel The Room, the reality is simple: there’s a door near the bathroom that leads. . .

Read More >

Thérèse and Isabelle
Thérèse and Isabelle by Violette Leduc
Reviewed by Kaija Straumanis

I recently listened to Three Percent Podcast #99, which had guest speaker Julia Berner-Tobin from Feminist Press. In addition to the usual amusement of finally hearing both sides of the podcast (normally I just hear parts of Chad’s side. . .

Read More >

On the Edge
On the Edge by Rafael Chirbes
Reviewed by Jeremy Garber

Let’s not deceive ourselves, man is nothing very special. In fact, there are so many of us that our governments don’t know what to do with us at all. Six billion humans on the planet and only six or seven. . .

Read More >

Rambling Jack
Rambling Jack by Micheál Ó Conghaile
Reviewed by Vincent Francone

“Rambling Jack—what’s that?”
“A novel. Novella, I guess.”
“Yeah, it looks short. What is it, a hundred pages?”
“Sorta. It’s a duel language book, so really, only about… 50 pages total.”
“50 pages?”
“Including illustrations.”
“And this—what. . .

Read More >

The Things We Don't Do
The Things We Don't Do by Andrés Neuman
Reviewed by Tiffany Nichols

Many authors are compared to Roberto Bolaño. However, very few authors have the privilege of having a Roberto Bolaño quote on the cover of their work; and at that, one which states, “Good readers will find something that can be. . .

Read More >

Private Life
Private Life by Josep Maria de Sagarra
Reviewed by Christopher Iacono

In Josep Maria de Sagarra’s Private Life, a man harangues his friend about literature while walking through Barcelona at night:

When a novel states a fact that ties into another fact and another and another, as the chain goes on. . .

Read More >

Dinner
Dinner by César Aira
Reviewed by Lori Feathers

César Aira dishes up an imaginative parable on how identity shapes our sense of belonging with Dinner, his latest release in English. Aira’s narrator (who, appropriately, remains nameless) is a self-pitying, bitter man—in his late fifties, living again with. . .

Read More >

The next few events from our Translation Events Calendar: See More Events >