Thursday, April 06, 2006

Peeling Back The Layers

If you don't watch Lost on ABC, I'm telling you now to get your hands on the first season (available on DVD) and watch the entire season in time to begin watching Season 2 reruns come June.

Give it a chance! If you are underwhelmed by the 2-hour premiere, I implore you to stick with it. It is worth it! This program demonstrates to me what good writing is all about. It is a breath of fresh air in a sea of reality.

What does it have, you ask?

Layers Characters and stories that are complex. Built in such a way that you want to keep peeling the layers back to find something new, different and magical. Bit by bit we see the "why" behind the actions and events and, more importantly, we care.

Details. Every single detail is thought out and planned with such precision. Are you one of the viewers that made the map the most TiVo'd moment in Lost history? There is such creativity on this show and it is a great feeling when a viewer catches a detail and realizes it was intentional. It's like a brotherhood...

Interdependencies. Every interaction and every experience has purpose. In a good story, you see how these interdependencies connect us. And connections run amok in Lost.

What If? Factor Monsters, voodoo, phantom airplanes dropping food, disappearing soccer players, horses, polar bears, mystery hatches, man of faith vs. man of science... These writers take thinking out of the box to a new level.

Don't be afraid to peel back the layers - it could be hot molten lava, sweet creamy pudding or just plain onion breath - but it's our job as writers to take that risk. It's the only way that we can really bring truth to our characters and to make the viewers care.

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David Anaxagoras said...

I hate TV.

I love Lost.

I didn't bother watching the first season when it aired because I thought - "Ug -- 'Castaway, the Series'" Then toward the end of the season I starting hearing people talk about paranormal/sci-fi elements, which more my style. So I got season one on DVD and I was BLOWN AWAY by the very first episode. And it only got better. Lost may be the only TV show that has ever made me cry.

Damn fine writing. Damn fine show.

(Not like Lost needs any more viewers, though.)

Anonymous said...

for writing IMHO, the best writing on television hands down... hands up and sideways too. I thought the same for Desperate Housewives but they lost the edge this year