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ABC (ended 2010)
Lost's season finales set the bar high early on - if you had to pick one, which is it?

Here's a quick refresher. Note: Spoilers for all:

1) Season 1's "Exodus" ended on the show's biggest cliffhanger, a light shining out of the newly discovered hatch. The first season's huge ratings would never recover, but this twist cemented the hardcore fans' love for the show. With a summer to ponder what was inside the hatch, the show established wild speculation as the norm.



2) Season 2's "Live Together, Die Alone" revealed Ben Linus as the leader of The Others, outed Michael as a killer, and showed us what happens if the button isn't pressed every 108 minutes. Season 2 was widely criticized for the long, slow buildup that resulted in Desmond's reveal and the lack of answers to accompany dozens of new, intriguing mysteries. That said, the finale paid off big time by putting a charismatic face in change of the previously mysterious Others. Here's an old promo to re-live the build up:



3) Season 3' "Through the Looking Glass" brought a huge showdown with The Others, the show's most heartbreaking moment in "Not Penny's Boat," an escape from the island and Jack's maniacal "We have to go back! - perhaps the show's very best twist. Some have argued that the show could have stopped right here and been better off.



4) Season 4's "There's No Place Like Home" brought a shortened season of waiting for the freighter to a close with lots of violence, the island "moving," and the long awaited introduction of time travel. While there were great scenes throughout, I expected a much greater pay-off from a season that embraced the exciting flash-forward device.



5) Season 5's "The Incident" was probably my least favorite season and finale, with Jack's bomb resulting in the show's most painful and confusing cliffhanger. For many, time travel greatly confused Lost's plotting and the made it impossible to deliver a satisfying season finale.



6) Season 6's "The End"

While I'm not looking to re-start the discussion about the quality of Lost's series finale, it's worth noting that even the actors were heartbroken to reach the end...


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