I don’t claim to know what the authors were saying in LOST. I know something better. I know what the story meant to me, what it told me, that is true, about the world we live in and about every human life: That each life has a begining, a middle and an end, in that order. That whatever happened, happened. And that while there is an island which is the source of the warmest, most beautiful light, and everything that is good in the world, there are some people who want to destroy that island, and everyone you love.
Knowing that means that you know that it is possible for people to choose such a heinous goal, and that gives you a great respect for the preponderance of people who don’t choose it. Most people don’t want to destroy the island, and the people who do want to destroy it have to hide their plans from the general public. Most people seek the good, but they have a confused and error prone process of discovering the good. That confusion is a minor inconvenience compared to the problems created by the people who have chosen willful self-destruction and the destruction of everything that is good. The confused people are just easily fooled by the few who actually seek to destroy the island and all that is good.
There are a lot of stories that fixate or revolve around an obsessive center point. In the horror genre this might be a house, a mystical artifact, a village, some other haunted dwelling, or even something abstract like a signal, or a number. These center points are taken to represent something much larger, such as a world-view, and characters are lured within, trapped or “captivated” by the magnetism or gravity of the center point, and the story describes the decent into that center point. But that is the horror genre, which generally instils a horrific view of reality, or a malevolent universe view of reality.
There are many other types of stories that have other fixations, or center points. It could be the solution to a murder, as in most crime dramas, often backed up by a history of personal tragedies of the investigators.
In LOST, however, the center point is an island, the archetype of a center point itself. The island, in this case, represents the center point at the heart of all stories, all narratives.
Series that start with eye-opening: - The Good Place - The Event - Quantico
The Underlying Question of All Claims
Claims are directed. All the philosophical shows are making a claim, and all claims are directed. They posit time travel, or they posit AI and the question of free will. All of these claims have an undrelying moral/ethical/political question. When authors explore a supposed lack of free will some of them might be just curious, but they are opening a question of establishing individual’s ability, and therefor responsability, to choose. When they explore a question of time travel they are asking, in a fancy way, about whether people’s choices have already been made for them, and therefor also raising the question of a person’s ability and responsability to choose.
When they explore these question, often at great length, and then leave them unresolved, they are underming people’s claims of ability and responsability to choose, and therefore their right to choose.
Other people are seen as soft material of reality. If they can be swayed by non-factual arguments, it is as if their cognative virtual reality of their minds can be refashioned into the manipulator’s desired reality. Other people become the manipulator’s first battle-ground in their war on reality, in which they place an “I wish” above an “it is”.
LOST brings this popular activity into stark relief. LOST starts by removing technology, and broad political culture, and focusing on a small group, isolated and new to each other.
In this context we can investigate the intentional edits each character applies to each other. They are not editing reality, they are editing each other’s apprehension of reality, and attempting to leave it up to the other to figure out how to implement the wish-world.