It’s been a decade since Lost wrapped up its six-season, twisty-turny, time-traveling narrative. The iconic—and controversial—series changed the face of television, from how the story unfolded to even eliminating the need for a fully-realized theme song. The survivors (once again, they weren’t dead the whole time) of Oceanic 815 and the mythology of the island are unforgettable pieces of television history. During the New York Comic Con 2020 Metaverse panel hosted by Josh Horowitz, creators Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof fielded questions ranging from serious and complicated to downright silly.
The biggest question that kept popping up, both in jest and seriously, was the plothole of the outrigger incident in Season 5. The creators have never revealed who was chasing our Losties, leading to a list of fan theories and speculation. Apparently, they did decide who the mysterious outrigger crew was but they chose not to share, likening the mystery to the finale of The Sopranos, where they loved the ending but people hated it.
“[Writer/producer] David Chase refuses to talk about the ending of The Sopranos,” Lindelof explained. “It felt like since our finale was not about not telling, in fact, we feel like we told you everything, and so the idea that there were unanswered questions about Lost, I continue to challenge any fan to ask us a question and we’ll answer it or we’ll provide you with a roadmap to get the answer that the show provided, like what was the deal with Walt, or what did the numbers mean, or please explain the polar bears or why did Jack have to fly that kite with Bai Ling. We will answer all of the questions. Except for one. Which is the outrigger. And that we will take to our graves. We wrote the scene that answered the question and other people outside our writers’ room have seen the scene and been sworn to secrecy. So should Carlton and I die…those individuals can come forward and say, ‘now that they are dead I will tell you who was on the outrigger.’”
One fan asked if Lost were made today how would it differ from 2004 when it launched. Both Lindelof and Cuse agreed that the show worked because of its time. The world, the technology, and the current events surrounding those six years were important, and transporting it to the hot mess that is 2020 would drastically change the tone and motivations of the characters. A great example is how the idea of quarantine and Desmond’s fear of leaving the hatch would be a much different feel in a post COVID world.
When asked about a sequel, spinoff, or prequel to the series, both creators gave their blessing but in another writer’s hands. Feeling as if they ended it the way they wanted it, they believe that a new generation of writers playing in the world would be interesting.
“I think that stories can be told by anyone,” Lindelof shared. “And anyone can take control of the story and make it their own vision. And that would be quite exciting.”
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