SURVEY SAYS: How Did Lost and 24 Turn Out?

May 27, 2010 ( - Well, the past couple of days have seen the series end for two very popular shows; “Lost” and “24”.

This week I asked readers how they felt about those season enders – and I have to admit I was surprised (even stunned) at the results.  

Let’s start with the fact that most of this week’s respondents not only didn’t watch the “Lost” finale – but had NEVER watched “Lost.”  Nearly 58% were in the latter category, just under 15% said they didn’t watch it, and 6% said they hadn’t watched it “yet” (which I took as a sign that they were going to at some point).

Of those who did watch it, 5% thought it was “great”, 4% characterized it as “good”, and 4.9% were “disappointed.” 

Of the remaining roughly 12%, most were probably in a category that could have been called “confused”, with “frustrated” a distant second.  

Among the verbatims:

Finally this series is over.  Two seasons too long.  Was a fan until the Sideways reality.  Then it became too complex.

Gave up on Lost after the second season.

Thought provoking, somewhat disturbing, not totally fulfilling

We are reluctantly watching through the end, because we kept feeling like if we just hang in there for one more episode it might start to make sense.   Why we’ve kept at it this long, I really could not say……

Lots of focus on the spiritual and emotional aspects, but no real resolution of the storyline we were following for 6 years.  I guess the point is all these silly plot twists are meaningless – what really matters is people, and love, and blah, blah, blah…  Seems like a “bait and switch” to me.  And I feel like a sucker for watching it for 6 years waiting for this.  But there are a lot of glowing comments out there, so I guess I’ve missed something.

Watched a few episodes early on, saw the end of the finale.

Uncreative based on what I heard.

Watched the first year and saw the ending.  Glad I didn’t watch the other years.

Still trying to wrap my brain around it.  It’s either made me think or has finally rotted my brain.

Thank God! I thought they’d never leave!


I stopped watching Lost after season 1



Now, apparently this week’s respondents were no more likely to watch Jack Bauer’s exploits on “24.”  A full 56.9% said they had NEVER watched the program, while 16.7% said they hadn’t watched the final episode, and a mere 2.0% said they hadn’t watched it “yet” (again, I’m assuming they will watch it eventually).

Of those who did watch, 12.7% thought it was “great”, half that many (5.9%) thought it was merely “good”, and only 1% were “disappointed.”  Most of the remaining 8% didn’t watch it – but most seemed to have tried it at one point.  Among the verbatims:

Thank God! I thought they'd never leave!

Unless it got better, i quit watching about 6 years ago because it had gotten really lame!

Stopped watching 24 several years ago

Will eventually watch it - I just finished the 1st season a couple of months ago - so it will be awhile.....

Gave up on 24 a few years ago...sometimes too PC, sometimes too real-world.

Never watched the show, but saw a scene where the President is ready to sign a treaty, and the press is watching, and then she decides to do the "right" thing. Yea - THAT'S gonna happen.

I would not watch this program. It gave too many people in power the idea that torture is acceptable.

We quit watching after they killed off a character one season and had him back again the next. Did they think that we weren't paying attention?

On the subject of series enders generally, and these two in particular:

Some were happy to see them be over:

I was disappointed that I stuck with "Lost" all this time to find out what it was all about and it turned out to be not too much.

For both series, I tried them for a few years, then gave up on them.

I gave up on 24 several years ago -- Jack mumbled too much and it was just too violent!

By the time finally come you really don't care....

I hadn't kept up with Lost for a couple of seasons and by the time I tuned into the finale that night I couldn't even follow along - will have to try to catch it On Demand.  As for 24, I did watch that entire finale and I thought it was well-done; full of the action, tension and drama for which we love the series.  And of course it left the door open for a movie "a la X-Files".  Thankfully it DID NOT end like the Sopranos!

Thank God! I thought they'd never leave!

Some were happy, and yet sad:

I thoroughly enjoyed the ending of 24. I'm sorry the show had to end.  I only became a big fan this season although I had watched it occasionally -- & enjoyed each episode I saw -- in recent years.  This year, I was totally hooked.  I really liked how it ended.  I was sure that Jack was going out "dead", but very pleased that they found a way to leave it with him alive.  Happy that President Taylor finally got a conscience.  Glad she returned from the dark side.  And very happy that worm, ex-President Logan, shot himself in the end.  Good riddance.  Can anybody say "SNAKE"?

As a huge fan of 24, I found myself tearing up at the end.  But I had to reach down deep inside and fight off the tears because my wife was in the room.  Health care will never be good enough to allow me to outlive her ability to pick on me for crying during a television show like 24!

I thought we were going to see Jack's end, but I was glad to see him walk away knowing that his family would also be safe.  Also nice to see that in the end President Taylor did the right thing.

The last episode of 24 was great.  I like when a show ends that they stick with the formula and give the fans what they want.  Too often they decide to do something off the wall for the sake of "art".  I wanted Jack to come back to being a "good guy" again, and I'm glad he did.  Now I can't wait for the movie.

Surprise, surprise, Jack Bauer lives to see another day (and perhaps an upcoming big screen appearance).

Glad they didn't kill Jack off.  We're gonna need him for the movie!  Of course, how are they going to do the "real-time" gimmick in a movie that is only two or so hours long?

I felt very satisfied after it ended knowing that Jack had been vindicated by the President and that he wasn't going to be locked up to die somewhere. I'm looking forward to the movie.

"Both fabulous! 

Lost tied up loose ends and reunited the couples. Created a whole new question: how, when and where did they all die?  We will all enjoy the speculation on that for awhile, and continue to interpret the rest of it.  Some things just can't be explained. I find it very interesting that I'm (and others are) so willing to suspend reality when I believe someone can take different life forms (Man in Black), live for centuries and then only have one gray hair (Richard), live parallel lives that may or may not have really happened (everyone), and not think there's something curious about it all.  We truly believe in the stories and characters!

Poor Jack, alone again and still.  It was just yesterday (in 24's world) that he was playing with his granddaughter and was set to move to LA with his daughter and her family.  Again, reality is suspended when they never charge the cell phone, take a drink of water or eat anything, go to the bathroom...but the world is saved in that 24 hour period.   LOVED the shot of Jack rising up from the back seat to put a gun to Pillar's head!  It was like the Alien uncoiling from the walls to swoop down on an unsuspecting victim.  Can't wait for the movie!!!  Maybe Tony will join him again."

Some readers were otherwise engaged:

Who has time for watching this much television (even with DVR)?

Lost?? I believe that describes what happened to the Yankees vs the Mets that evening! 🙂

I don't waste my time with television.  I would rather live than watch others do it.

The programs available on network and cable television are, IMHO, dismal, which is why I watch less and less television.  However there are some programs that I enjoy watching.  Law & Order was one of those programs.  That it should be cancelled while reality blather shows such as Survivor, The Bachelor/Bachelorette and America's Biggest Loser is astonishing to me.  Thank goodness for PBS.

And some, of course, still have questions:  

What was up with the "count up" instead of the countdown from 2 hours at the start of the show.  Will the movie be called "28"?

Lost' lost me early in season one.  Too amazed how the bad boy had a few days beard growth all season long.  In fact, nobody's hair grew, and the actresses always seemed to have just enough make-up.  As for "24", I was beginning to think it stood for how many seasons they were expecting to have.  At least it was better than "reality" TV.

Among the other comments:

In theory, I like to have series enders so that there is closure. But in reality, the hype and expectations surrounding series endings never equal the end (pun!) result. It may be best to have the series ending but just another show, because they rarely get it right (though Mary Tyler Moore show ending came close).

I work with many "Losties", all of whom were upset with the ending.  Is it mean to tell them to keep it to their blogs? (editor’s note:  probably).

It needs to be simple, happy, with good closure.  Sometimes they seem "too full of themselves" for ex: Seinfeld and MASH.

No mention of the end of "Law & Order"? Without benefit of knowing the show would be cancelled, the series put together a solid season ender that turned into a satisfying series ender (editor’s note:  Oops, I gave up on L&O when the plot lines started making political statements).

But this week’s Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who noted, “24 leaves it open for Jack to come back 5 years from now when his daughter is in charge and needs help”.

Thanks to everyone who participated in our survey!