Ronald D. Moore, show runner for Battlestar Galactica, had always planned to end his reinvented show on Earth’s ancient past, but he has admitted that certain plot developments (like Daniel, Cylon model 7) were developed later to cover errors in earlier writing. Other later developments, like the true identity of Ellen Tigh (a hanging suspicion from the show’s first season), were never settled upon until it came time to produce the show’s final season.
Similarly, Lindelof and Cuse continue to insist that their endgame for Lost has remained fixed; getting there, however, has remained in flux. It would seem if any plan for the show’s overall narrative had ever existed, it existed in some of the vaguest possible terms to allow the writers room to the develop the specifics over time. Therefore, in suffering the malaise of the show’s third season, the show runners negotiated a rare deal in network television, and worked out a solid end date for the show. In essence, they placed audiences within sight of a final page.
ABC announced in 2007 that Lost would take its bow in 2010. Perhaps more detailed plans for the series’ final chapters really were laid down once an end date was marked on the calendar. The third season closed stronger than it had opened, and each successive season has driven onward with a better sense of…well, destiny.
Lost returns to ABC for its sixth and final season February 2, 2010. Expectations for a satisfying close remain high with only 18 hours of this epic tale left to unfold. Fans and detractors have already taken sides in the debate, and once the curtain falls, it will likely continue.
Regardless, Lindelof and Cuse have managed to keep their ship on a steady course through some occasional rough waters. Here’s to seeing them steer it home.