April 27, 2008


Timetable Energizes What Once Was ‘Lost’ (EDWARD WYATT, 4/24/08, NY Times)

A little over a year ago the creators of “Lost,” ABC’s ambitious serial drama about the castaway survivors of an airplane crash in the Pacific, seemed to be quite lost themselves.

Their show, a huge hit in its first season, had become, in its third, weighed down with the expectations created by its early success. Viewers were steadily draining away as doubts grew that the series was headed in any definite direction, while the complicated and often convoluted story line seemed to provide few entry points for new fans.

Yet as “Lost” embarks on Thursday night on the second half of its strike-shortened fourth season, the series is moving at a breakneck pace that has excited the fan base and energized the show’s writers, actors and staff. What happened?

“We were sort of stalling” last season, said Carlton Cuse, an executive producer of “Lost” who, with Damon Lindelof, forms the core of the creative team behind the island mystery. “We didn’t know whether the mythology we constructed had to last two more seasons or seven more seasons. And that was driving us crazy because we didn’t know how fast it was going to play out.”

What the producers asked for and the network and ABC’s television studio granted was something almost unheard of in network television: an end date, when the series would conclude and the mysteries of the island would be revealed.

Early last May, ABC and the producers announced that the series would run for three more seasons, through spring 2010.

...that these network execs figure out that three seasons ought to be the maximum for these narrative series? Life on Mars, at two, was nearly perfect.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 27, 2008 10:41 AM
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