Season 6 Episode 17

The End

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM May 23, 2010 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
1,446 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

The battle lines are drawn as Locke puts his plan into action, which could finally liberate him from the island.

The Man in Black's final fate is determined, and one survivor must make the ultimate sacrifice to save the island, Meanwhile, in another life, the ones who might have been the survivors gather for a final time.


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  • If you think the LOST finale was the best thing since sliced bread, read this lengthy diatribe.

    The Lost Finale started off as any other episode of the series, meaning I was enjoying it immensely, when, like Oceanic Flight 815, the show abruptly did a nosedive into the realm of cliche and unnecessary tragedy. And I watched as the show I loved so much crashed and burned. I feel betrayed that a show I have invested so much time into-frequently defending it to my friends and family-transmogrified from a sharp, smart sci-fi show on par with the likes of Doctor Who into a cheesy, prosaic story that belonged on such shows like Joan of Arcadia or Ghost Whisperer. I'll be the first to admit that I am religious, and though I have my own view on the afterlife, I'm not opposed to watching or reading works with a different outlook. However, those works I reference never pretended to be anything other than religious/supernatural stories. They didn't start out by trying to explain monsters and other supernatural phenomena as scientific anomalies, and they didn't spend two seasons setting up and delivering a story about time travel. I mean, what were the point of Daniel Faraday and his theories on time travel? If you can't change the past or create alternative realities where the people are alive (see Doctor Who and Fringe for good examples) then why introduce the concept in the first place? To have some fun? To mess with the viewers' heads? And what was up with Miles hearing dead Juliet's comment that "it worked"? Are we to believe that Miles wasn't hearing the last thoughts of the dead, but her thoughts in limbo land when she handed James his candy bar? Are we to accept that the bomb did absolutely no good? So Daniel, the nuclear physicist was really an idiot, after all? Jeez, what's the point of knowing quantum physics when you can't do anything with it? And I guess Jack and Juliet were idiots too for believing him. But this doesn't make sense, because we know electromagnetism has to do with time travel. We were introduced to this in season 3 when Desmond, newly exposed to electromagnetism, flashed to a parallel world and saw his past play out in a nearly identical manner. (Remember, in the real past he broke up with Penny on his own volition, not on the urging of Eloise. And the football team won in one version and lost in the other). We got more confirmation on this theory in "The Constant" and when Ben turned the Donkey Wheel, harnessing the energy and moving the island through space and time. So why did the electromagnetism, which was previously a vehicle for travel through time and space, turn into a means to flash to an eternal limbo and back? Des was a time traveler. We know magical limbo was timeless, so how did a time traveller suddenly become an emissary for purgatory? It doesn't follow logic, and you can say all you want about sci-fi and fiction and how the writers can makes things up as they go, but it's not true. Even if your story exists outside the realm of the real world, you still have to follow the rules you established for that imaginary world. Let's make a syllogism to further illustrate the point: Electromagnetism creates time and space travel. Desmond can harness electromagnetism. Ergo, Desmond can travel to a place where time and reality don't exist? "XXXXXXXXXXXX" goes the buzzer. Logical fallacy. The thing that frustrates me is that they didn't have to make it purgatory. They had it set up so perfectly to be a parallel universe like the one Rose Tyler got stuck in. They could have easily had the last scene been Desmond telling those gathered at the church that they're in an alternate dimension that was created when the hydrogen bomb and the electromagnetism collided, and those who were still alive in the island world could either keep their consciousnesses over in the alternate world with their dead loved ones, or they could stay in the island world. And Kate, Sawyer and Claire would have chosen to stay with their soul mates, possibly Miles because his life sucked in the island world, and Ben and Hurley would have passed because they still had work to do on the island. Instead, we get the Harry Potter syndrome. I read that the LOST writers came up with this ending sometime during the beginning of the series run when JJ Abrams was still involved. This whole limbo thing was his ridiculous concoction. So probably, since season two, they were planning to make Jack die and meet up with Kate in purgatory. Goodie. That makes me feel sooooooo much better. Just like when I heard . Rowling wrote the Crapilogue waaaaaaaaay back at the beginning and refused to rewrite it after her series was complete. And it showed. The writing looked like it was taken right out of a banal sitcom. The characters showed no growth. In short, it sucked. Instead of adapting the ending to fit the evolution of the characters and story, both and the Lost writers stuck firmly to their original idea, and it did not make cohesive sense with the rest of the story. Lost was never a religious show. It had religious undertones, Christ-like figures, and certain characters like Charlie, Eko and Sayid who expressed religious beliefs, but religion wasn't the core of the show. It was a character study with sci-fi fantasy elements like Star Wars, Doctor Who, or Fringe. But in the last 15 minutes, the show did a 180 and became the next Touched by an Angel. If the writers had wanted this show to be a metaphor for our life's journey and final destination into the afterlife, they should have presented those ideas long before the finale and in more than just obtuse phrases like "everything happens for a reason," "it's destiny," and "don't confuse coincidence with What do those generic terms have to do with the bizzaro Roman Catholic purgatory we get in the end? And how do mere mortals create a magical realm through their thoughts and hopes and all arrive there after they die? How can people die in this world (like Keamy and Mikhail) when they're already dead? How can women have children when they're dead? When did the writers establish the rule that good thoughts and desires could even create an alternate dimension? Oh that's right. In the last 15 minutes of the program. Cheap, guys. Speaking of cheap . . . the emotional reunion between my favorite ships lost all meaning once I realized they were dead. Before that startling and unpleasant revelation, everything was so poignant and beautiful. I cried when Charlie and Claire remembered their island life, and I thought to myself, "Finally, Charlie can raise Aaron with Then Sawyer and Juliet kissed, and I grinned wildly from ear to ear. And even though I knew Jack was going to die when Kate and he kissed goodbye, I was still thrilled to hear her say, "I love And I thought, "well, at least they can be together in the parallel But what good is being together in an alternate world when you're dead? Dead people can't reproduce, as observed by the magical disappearance of David once Jack remembered his death. Jack and Kate et al. could conceivably stay in their happy limbo existence for a while and live out the life they never got, but the way Christian talked, it seemed pretty evident that everyone was "passing No second chances for any of my ships. What's the point of having canon ships when your couples are all frickin' dead?!? And what kind of crap life did Kate, Sawyer and Claire live after they landed in LA? If you'll recall in "Eggtown," Kate was told if she ever left the state, she would be thrown in jail for a long, long time. So Jack ordered her to leave so she could pine for him in a prison? She should have stayed, been with him when he died. Yeah, yeah, Vincent finding him in the bamboo grove was full of symmetry. Screw symmetry. I want at least semi-happy endings! And why, pray tell, did Jack have to die? If you tell me it's for the sake of coming full circle, blah blah blah, I will hurt you. Jack, my good, kind Jack, who tried his whole life to help people and to be a better person, has his life cut tragically short and doesn't get to be with the woman he loves. Whereas Ben, a man who committed mass genocide, who's lied and manipulated his whole life, gets the one thing he always wanted: to stay and protect the island. WTF? Don't get me wrong, I love Ben. But Ben should have died to redeem himself, like Sayid. Instead, the writers, being so enamored with Michael Emerson, give him a long happy existence on the island. Frickin A. Just thinking about it, makes me cry. Again. Let me end this rant with a mention about the title, "The Jacob said it would only end once. Yet, we didn't get to see it end. The island still needed protecting, which was why Hurley got the job. So what the hell was Jacob talking about? Where's this "end"? And what kind of justification is there in making Hurley the protector? He didn't want the job. He took it because Jack ordered him to. And isn't that exactly what Jacob didn't want to happen? To have another person forced into the position? For a show that was pushing free will, not much was available in the endmoreless
  • WORST SERIES FINALE EVER, completely destroys the sixth season and possibly all the other five.

    Until the moment Jack puts the cork: Excellent, Awesome, a 10, both what have happened in the original universe and in the parallel universe. Then, in the last 15 minutes of the series, it crash and burns. The parallel universe turns out to be Purgatory. So: John Locke never got to be the leader of "the others", he never got to have a full life in the island, he just walks for 50 meters to the church and then goes to heaven. Boone never got to know Locke was right about the island and could say thanks to Locke for time together and then live in the now peaceful island. Shannon never got to mature and have a full relationship with Sayid Sun and Jin never returned to the island and then leave(which would be much easier now), to raise their daughter together. Claire lives the rest of his life without Charlie. Sawyer lives the rest of his life without Juliet. Imagine how much better it would be if: There were no purgatory flashbacks during the whole season, then jack dies in the bamboo forest, and then wakes up in the church with all the characters who have died until that moment(only those), and his father tells him that it's ok and they can go to heaven. And we know that the ones who survive would also meet with then in heaven eventuallymoreless
  • about the episode

    It had great editing.
  • This show man :'(

    I felt like I knew everybody in this show and I can't believe I'm saying this but tears came out on this show the final show :( I love this show so much I wish ya can do more lost episodes and it would be a dream me acting inside of this show or with the creators and producers credos to all actors and bad robot also abc I. Love ya and this show the best show in my life and I mean it :( keep it up and my dream is to be an actor :-)moreless
  • Wow. What a total copout.

    Lost is one of my favorite shows EVER. Every episode, from the Pilot to the penultimate episode had a significance. Sure, there were ups and downs. There was the mysterious season 1, thought by many to be the best. There was season 2, which was far too slow and the new characters were far too annoying, at least until the ending. Season 3 had an amazing second half. Then there was the action packed and fast paced season 4, my favorite season to date, with every episode being important. Season 5 starts out interesting, then gets far too preachy for my liking, with the final episodes being good, not great.

    Season 6, up until the finale, was set for dethroning season 4 as my favorite. The flash-sideways was an interesting and thought provoking idea, which ultimately turned out to be a gigantic waste of time. The island story was awesome, with Jacob and Locke and the many many main character deaths.

    So what happened? Well, for me, it was too CHEESY. The happy/sad music, the church at the end, the way all the characters in the alternate reality somehow figured out that they were connected in the past and then proceeded to do...nothing. The final scene in the church had me facepalming. Since when was Lost a religious preachy show? I DON'T CARE IF THEY LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER. LOST ISN'T A FAIRY TALE.

    Thanks to this ending, EVERYTHING is pointless. It's just a version of the "it was all a dream" ending, only instead it's a "We've been dead the entire time, the past 6 seasons and all the hours of sleep our viewers have LOST means nothing because they were dead!"

    I'm not even upset about the answers. We found out everything totally pressing in my mind, except for Walt and the Polar Bears. However I don't care really about the Polar Bears...it's just a polar bear. Walt can probably be answered if you analyze the show and figure out it, but I don't see the point of a rewatch knowing that none of it matters anyway. The writers decided to throw everything they've worked on for six years into a church, and apparently god was not with them, because they managed to produce the worst possible ending to one of the greatest shows in the history of television.

    So if you forget the alternate reality BS, the story of season 6 boils down to the Monster, AKA John Locke, trying to get off the island. To do this he needs to get all of the candidates together, put out some ***ed god light, and then they can fly off. Well what happens? That happens, only Locke dies. All the important people that survive (besdies Hugo, Jack, and Ben) leave the island. The End. Oh yeah, and Jack dies. But I don't really care about that, because he was dead to begin with, right?

    Even with the remaining questions, such as "What is the light?" "What is the island?" "Why are Polar Bears on the island?" and everything else that was never answered after the first season, all would have been better if the finale was actually EXCITING. Instead we get a bunch of cheesy music and laughter and smiling, when it should have been the most exciting edge-of-your-seat 2 hours ever filmed for television. Instead I found myself yawning and wanted to skip through the scenes.

    Do I hate the show? No. I love the show. Lost as a show gets a 10, easy. I'd give the entire show 11 if I could. But the ending? Well, too bad TV.com can't go less than 1, because a 0/10 is fitting enough. I could write a better Series Finale in my sleep. And even if they had just taken out the goddamned church scene, I would've been fine. But that scene ruined everything in the show for me. All the characters that died, that lived, ALL OF THEM, what is the point? And why a church? Since when was Lost a religious show? There's been some religious episodes here and there, but the show was ultimately about science and fate and friendship. The finale was just an anti-climactic montage of people remembering stuff that happened on the island for the past 5 seasons and 16 episodes.

    And I remember that stuff too. Because I was fascinated by it. I was glued to my seat. I ignored important phone calls just so I could finish it. I had to watch "one more episode" until I was falling asleep in my chair, yet even then I would go to the fridge and drink a caffeinated soda just to finish the episode.

    So all of that dedication...just to find out that they were dead. Is this supposed to be a bitter-sweet ending? Because for me the only sweet is everything before this episode.

    Hell, at least 24 had a good ending.moreless
Jorge Garcia (I)

Jorge Garcia (I)

Hugo "Hurley" Reyes

Naveen Andrews

Naveen Andrews

Sayid Jarrah

Emilie de Ravin

Emilie de Ravin

Claire Littleton (Seasons 1-4 and 6)

Henry Ian Cusick

Henry Ian Cusick

Desmond Hume (Seasons 3+)

Ken Leung

Ken Leung

Miles Straume (Seasons 4+)

Jeff Fahey

Jeff Fahey

Frank Lapidus (Season 6, recurring in Seasons 4 & 5)

Dominic Monaghan

Dominic Monaghan

Charlie Pace (Seasons 1-3, recurring otherwise)

Recurring Role

Cynthia Watros

Cynthia Watros

Libby (Season 2, recurring otherwise)

Recurring Role

Maggie Grace

Maggie Grace

Shannon Rutherford (Seasons 1-2)

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (4)

    • Sawyer refers to Desmond as a leprechaun. Leprechauns are Irish whereas Desmond is Scottish.

    • Elizabeth Mitchell filmed the hospital scenes on her birthday in the early hours and the cast and crew had a small celebration for her (March 27th).

    • As Hurley is pulling into Charlie's motel with Sayid, a man walking his dog cross the driveway in front of them. The dog is Jack Bender's adopted dog Lulu, who has appeared in 6 episodes.

    • The box Christian Shephard's coffin was transported in has stickers displaying the following airport codes: BMN (Bamerny Airport, Iraq), GUM (A.B. Won Pat International Airport, Guam), HKG (Hong Kong International Airport, China), and LAX (Los Angeles International Airport).

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Jack: Desmond, you've done enough. You want to do something? Go home and be with your wife and son.

      Desmond: But what about you Jack?

      Jack: I'll see you in another life, brother.

    • Miles: (Working on the plane.) I don't believe in a lot of things, but I do believe in duct tape.

    • Locke: (As they were lowering Desmond into the light pool.) This remind you of anything, Jack?

      Jack: What?

      Locke: Desmond ... going down into a hole in the ground. If there was a button down there to push, we could fight about whether or not to push it. It'd be just like old times.

      Jack: You're not John Locke. You disrespect his memory by wearing his face, but you're nothing like him. Turns out he was right about most everything. I just wish I could've told him that while he was still alive.

      Locke: He wasn't right about anything, Jack. And when this island drops into the ocean, and you drop with it, you're finally gonna realize that.

      Jack: Well, we'll just have to see which one of us is right, then.

    • Kate: Why did you take the job, Jack?
      Jack: Because I was supposed to.
      Kate: Why? Because some stranger wrote our names on a wall?
      Jack: I took it because the island's all I've got left. It's the only thing in my life I haven't managed to ruin.
      Kate: You haven't ruined anything. Nothing is irreversible.

  • NOTES (5)

    • The episode received the 2010 Emmy for "Outstanding Single Camera Picture Editing for a Drama Series".

      The episode further received 4 Emmy nominations for "Outstanding Directing For A Drama Series", "Outstanding Music Composition For A Series (Original Dramatic Score)", "Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Comedy Or Drama Series (One Hour)" and "Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series".

      Elizabeth Mitchell was also nominated for "Outstanding Guest Actress In A Drama Series" for her work as Juliet Burke in this episode.

    • This was the longest running episode of LOST at 103 minutes.

    • Vincent appears for the first time since "The Incident, Part 1", an absence of 17 episodes.

    • Though credited, Zuleikha Robinson (Ilana) does not appear in this episode.

    • Original International Air Dates: Canada: May 23, 2010 on CTV Turkey: May 24, 2010 on DiziMax/Digiturk Spain: May 24, 2010 on Fox and Cuatro United Kingdom: May 24, 2010 on Sky1 Italy: May 24, 2010, on Sky/FOX Portugal: May 24, 2010 on FOX Spain: May 24, 2010 on FOX and Cuatro (O.V.) Latin America: May 25, 2010 on AXN Australia: May 26, 2010 on 7 Ireland: May 27, 2010 on RTÉ TWO Netherlands: May 28, 2010 on NET 5 Finland: June 10, 2010 on Nelonen Norway: June 23, 2010 on TVNorge Germany: July 7, 2010 on FOX Sweden: July 21, 2010 on TV4 Czech Republic: July 26, 2010 on AXN


    • Star Wars:
      Hurley utters the phrase, "I have a bad feeling about this," which is a phrase used in all of the Star Wars movies.