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Judging the Series Finales: ‘Lost’ vs. ‘Battlestar Galactica’
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By Broadcasting Brain

Judging the Finales: Battlestar Galactica vs. LOSTThe dust hasn’t fully settled yet, but the series finale for Lost seems to be polarizing its fan base between love and hate. It hasn’t been long since the series ended and it may take a little while for the finale to fully sink in. However, while the details are still fresh in our minds, it’s interesting to attempt to compare the Lost finale to another highly anticipated series finale that divided its fans. Yes, I’m going there. We’re going to compare the Lost finale to another controversial series finale: the end of Battlestar Galactica.

Warning: Obviously, there are SPOILERS for both Lost and Battlestar Galactica, so beware.

Some initial observations

On the surface, these two series may not look very similar. Battlestar Galactica focused on the crew of a gigantic starship and the other survivors of an interstellar holocaust. The Cylons’ attempt at genocide forced the survivors of the Twelve Colonies to flee from their enemies and search for a new home.

Meanwhile, Lost focused on the people who survived a plane crash stranded on a mysterious topical island: a bunch of messed up civilians who didn’t realize how bad their lives were. They discover that they aren’t alone and they’re in danger. They desperately wish to escape the terrors of their island and go home. They think that they want to return to their old lives.

However, there are many similarities between the two series. They dealt with common themes like: leadership; community; good vs. evil; the levels of ambiguity between good and evil; the power of relationships; despair; hope; destiny; and science vs. faith.

Both shows had large casts, dealt with multiple locales, were filled with mystery, and developed fervent fan bases. They also had some of the most compelling characters in television, from the strong leads to the amazing stream of secondary cast members.

The finales for both series have been controversial, pleasing some and alienating others. It’s made for great discussion fodder on the Internet.

Finally, though, we are compelled to ask a question: Which finale was better? Lost‘s or BSG‘s?

I believe that Lost had a better finale than Battlestar Galactica. Here’s why:

Lost‘s finale stayed truer to the concept and mythology of the series than BSG‘s did.

Battlestar Galactica show-runner Ronald D. Moore made a point of insisting (and publicly stating) that his remake of BSG would emphasize a more “naturalistic” approach to science fiction. There would be no ray guns, no bug-eyed aliens, no funny stuff. Yet, in the end, we are given pretty clear indications that a higher power was making things happen and manipulating events, through the presence of “angels.”

EFF Chairman Brad Templeton was pretty explicit in his opinion that BSG ultimately turned its back on Moore’s tenets of naturalistic science fiction. He felt that the show runners used a deus-ex-machina device to wrap up the series by invoking the presence and machinations of a godlike being that had manipulated events to ultimately bring the survivors of the Cylon Holocaust to Earth.

Lost certainly made its share of continuity changes, inconsistencies, and abandoning plotlines that once seemed integral to the storyline of the survivors of Oceanic Flight 815. They may have done a worse job than BSG‘s show runners in this regard. However, they created a world where the unexplained would become something that, while it could surprise us, it would not shake our belief in the world of Lost.

Just think: an unseen monster, a polar bear in the jungle, and miraculous healing powers; the stage was clearly set for mysteries from day one. After having been properly prepared through events in the series, the revelations about Jacob, the Man in Black, the glowing Source, and the true nature of the “sideways universe” were not that hard to accept. Angels and a deity, on the other hand, really skewered the concept of freewill that had seemed to permeate BSG and which, up to that point, seemed to trump the mysticism and religious themes of the show.

Faith vs. science was a constant theme in Lost. In my book, they had permission to play the unseen forces card (Jacob merely being a manifestation of something unseen) because it was already part of their mythos.

Meaning and accomplishment in the series finale — redemption

In BSG‘s finale, the humans and their Cylon allies defeated the remaining Cylon Hybrid forces, ending their persecution of the humans and giving them the chance to live in peace. They managed to survive this and find a new planet to settle upon, at the expense of their technology and their community. However, instead of making a peace with the Cylons, a stupid event essentially destroyed the hope for peace, led to the destruction of the Cylons.

So, yes, the humans did achieve their goals by the end of BSG and characters (e.g., Boomer and Baltar) redeemed themselves, at least somewhat.

In Lost‘s finale, Jack Shephard defeated the Man in Black, prevented the Island from being destroyed, and helped his friends escape the Island according to their wishes. Then he died. It was sad, but he died accomplishing his main objective in life: to fix and save people. A bunch of people who had been lost, literally and figuratively, survived to live out their lives. Others eventually found something at the end, whether it was peace, forgiveness, or redemption.

To be honest, I think both finales are about the same in this regard, but I give Lost a slight edge here because Jack Shepard was redeemed on virtually every possible level in the final episode. The redemptions in BSG were OK, but not spectacular.

Death vs. life

Both series dealt with resurrection and life after death in different ways. In BSG, the Cylon Hybrids (including the Final Five) used resurrection as a means of continuation of the species. Resurrection was clearly supposed to be based on science. The Hybrids had endless opportunities, until the end of the series, to die and be reborn.

By the end of the series, Lost pretty clearly implied that resurrection wasn’t possible. All that we have is the time that is given to us to live our lives, to paraphrase Gandalf the Grey. We thought that John Locke had come back to life, but that turned out to be a ruse. In Lost‘s universe, there are no second chances.

Life after death: Both series did play around with this idea, with mixed success. We certainly saw a lot of dead people in Lost. Some were illusions while others clearly appeared to be the spirits of dead people. The show clearly implied that people might exist as a form of ghost if they weren’t ready, or able, to move beyond our world to something else.

BSG steered clear of anything of this sort until Kara Thrace returned to the Galactica at the end of Season 3. We were never really sure what the returned Kara Thrace was, although her disappearance at the end of the series finale suggested that she might have been an angel or a spirit temporarily given physical form. Again, BSG strayed from the concept of naturalistic science fiction in bringing her character back to the show in this manner. This is even more vexing because Thrace’s ghost [angel?] allowed them to find our Earth.

Lost has the edge here because the Island’s world was given enough latitude to accommodate life after death.

Coming together vs. drifting apart

My last complaint could lead you to accuse me of being sentimental, in which case I have no defense. I was happier with what happened to the Lost characters, even if it required a bit of imagination to figure out what happened to them, than what happened to the heroes of BSG.

Here’s what happened to the main characters of BSG: they found a home, dispersed widely, lost their technology, and presumably became our ancestors. Here’s the thing, though: they died without a trace. Yes, there was that gobbledygook which tried to suggest that Hera, the Cylon/human hybrid, became the “mother” of all current humanity by being the “Mitochondrial Eve” (again, Brad Templeton shot down that theory quite well). But, quite frankly, although they may have gone on to lead more peaceful lives, they left nothing behind. Perhaps we can infer that they jump started civilizations, but they were on Earth far too early for their culture or technology to leave a lasting impact on the planet. The Twelve Colonies were destroyed and the survivors”¦ melted into existing primitive cultures, leaving nothing of themselves behind.

Lost was definitely playing on a smaller scale. We really don’t know the details of the lives of many of the characters after they left the Island, but the final scenes, with the revelations of the true nature of the “sideways universe” did offer one import thing: closure. We know that certain people were reunited there. We saw enemies and rivals make peace with each other. We saw family and lovers reunited. Most importantly, we were left with the clear message that what had happened to the ka-tet of Oceanic Flight 815 was real and it mattered, even if only to each other. From a sentimental point of view, it worked. It was a happy ending, but it felt like they’d earned the happy ending.

Sorry Ronald D. Moore, but Lost clearly kicked BSG‘s ass with this part of the finale.

Series finale vs. series story

Both series were terrific, thought provoking, and entertaining. Both series also suffered from having too many plotlines, too many characters, and too many missed opportunities. Up until the finale, I would say that BSG definitely had an edge on Lost. We pretty clearly knew what BSG was about and, for the most part, it delivered. Lost“¦ many times it felt like neither the audience nor the show runners really understood what was happening. It was like peeling the layers of an onion.

However, Lost played the relationship and character cards much better than BSG in the finale. Lost‘s finale was downright silly in places (did Jack’s act of capping the Source remind anyone else of Spock saving the Enterprise in Wrath of Khan?), but it worked because we got to find out enough about the fate of the characters to be satisfied. It worked because it focused on relationships and love. And the good guys won, too.

Call me a sucker, but that’s the kind of payoff you expect in dramas, isn’t it? Even in science fiction and fantasy?


  1. Nope…BSG was better by a long shot and, as a matter of fact, I have no desire to re-watch ANY of LOST on DVD as I still do with Battlestar Galactica.

    Comment by m. — June 9, 2010 @ 11:46 am

  2. M, what specifically was better about BSG’s finale?

    Comment by Mark Dykeman — June 9, 2010 @ 7:23 pm

  3. This guy is obviously a complete idiot/douchebag. BSG stuck to its roots while Lost veered way of the track. Also, BSG actually managed to WRAP THINGS UP!!!! And whats more epic: the survivors of a nuclear holocaust fighting their way across the galaxy, or a bunch of random ppl trying to get off an island, only having TO GO BACK.

    Comment by Dave — June 10, 2010 @ 9:03 pm

  4. Never watched BSG, but my best buddy watched it and he was sorry he watched. He thought BSG was horrible while we both agreed that Lost was just the better ending and possibly better show. After reading this, I can see both points. While I am (or was) a true Lost fan and rewatch often, I now want to rent BSG and see for myself. I mean, I knew that those writers had a beginning middle and end from the very first episode. Unlike my Lost, whose story really didn’t begin until season 4. I’ll give BSG a shot

    Comment by Bob — June 10, 2010 @ 9:15 pm

  5. Bear McCreary’s score.

    Comment by Jim — June 10, 2010 @ 9:21 pm

  6. I agree with “m” here – BSG was far better. While the ending of BSG had me saying, “well, I can see you clearly pulled ‘this’ or ‘that’ out of thin air” for the most part things were wrapped up acceptably. The ending of Lost had me thinking, “I am NOT buying this sappy piece of crap – you give me some answers!”

    Also agreeing with the desire to rewatch BSG is there whereas I’m DONE and not going back with Lost.

    Comment by Dan Overlander — June 10, 2010 @ 9:37 pm

  7. “Battlestar Galactica show-runner Ronald D. Moore made a point of insisting (and publicly stating) that his remake of BSG would emphasize a more “naturalistic” approach to science fiction. There would be no ray guns, no bug-eyed aliens, no funny stuff. Yet, in the end, we are given pretty clear indications that a higher power was making things happen and manipulating events, through the presence of “angels.”

    you clearly did not understand BSG very well. BSG was all about ambiguity when it came to ‘supernatural events,’ they could easily be explained by coincidence and luck or by supernatural events. it was up to the viewer to decide. you are trying to pin down something that the writers expressly wanted to stay ambigious

    some people hated the finale because everything wasnt tied up in a neat little bow. people were mad that starbuck was not explained exactly how they wanted too. BSG wasnt a show where everything was given to you on a silver platter, it was meant for the audience to interpret in their own way.

    Comment by DK — June 10, 2010 @ 9:41 pm

  8. I’m in agreement with m. While BSG had it’s terrible Kara Thrace/angel storyline that really took away from the show, and in the end they left behind their technology and such, but what they got in return was peace and a return to a much simpler time. It would have made much more sense to have them locate Earth significantly closer to our time but I would love to spend the rest of my life on an untainted planet living in a log cabin.

    LOST wasted what could have been an incredible ending with timelines crashing together in something spectacular (they had the perfect setup with time travel already established) but wasted it on some religious allegory. What a waste of the 5 previous generally brilliant seasons.

    Ultimately, BSG is incredibly rewatchable. LOST is fading from my memory quickly.

    Comment by bobd — June 10, 2010 @ 9:57 pm

  9. I adored both shows, but I give the edge to BSG, for one key reason: It had mayyyybe three or four “throwaway” episodes. Lost had an entire season (2).

    Incidentally, anyone who was surprised by the religious themes in the BSG finale wasn’t paying attention. Religion (mono v. polytheism) was one of the key elements in the entire storyline.

    Comment by Tal — June 10, 2010 @ 10:46 pm

  10. i have only one word or name for you, that will made all those arguments invalid:


    or better yet a whole sentence: SAYID IN THE TEMPLE’S WATER.

    Comment by kenshin — June 10, 2010 @ 10:47 pm

  11. Also, Lost had crappy female characters, most of whose storylines revolved around a man of some sort. BSG was leaps and bounds ahead of them in that regard.

    Comment by Tal — June 10, 2010 @ 10:48 pm

  12. A review that states any incredulous plot developments are inconsequential in so far as the context “was given enough latitude to accommodate” is truly Lost. While the criticism of BSG’s reliance on a Deus Ex Machina holds weight, the rest of this analysis falls on the ridiculous.

    Comment by n. — June 10, 2010 @ 10:50 pm

  13. I agree with the notion that Lost was truer to it’s concept and themes in their finale. What I don’t agree with is the notion that they sacrificed answers in favor of characters. It’s true that there were dangling plots and questions, but when looking back at some of the biggest mysteries (the smoke monster, polar bear, what is the island?) I think you can make some pretty reasonable assumptions. I’m looking forward to buying the complete series on Blu-Ray and seeing how much it all held together.

    Comment by Joey — June 10, 2010 @ 10:51 pm

  14. Great comparison!

    I agree. There was better closure with LOST.

    Comment by Kalimah Priforce — June 10, 2010 @ 11:04 pm

  15. Strangely enough, I’ve always ended up forgetting the endings of some of my favorite books and tv series. For me the journey always means more, partially because endings almost always disappoint. Lost certainly disappointed after 4 promising seasons, but the finale did strike a great sentimental note. Considering I already forget BSG’s finale, I guess Lost wins. But I think both series’ lose a little bit.

    Love that you used “ka-tet”… that’s a word that describes a group of people linked by destiny or “narrative” that no other word comes close to. WOOT!

    Comment by ColdCalc — June 11, 2010 @ 12:44 am

  16. I found myself very happy with the Lost finale, while I had mixed feelings with the Battlestar finale.

    Flashes are rooted deep within Lost and the whole season had been around these sideways. I found that quite engaging and I was satisfied with the closure the characters got. I did not like the flashbacks in the BSG finale too much because I felt they took away from the action.

    I liked how the love of a man for a woman could change the fate of a whole race when the chief killed Tory. But you are very right about that BSG steered off its tracks. I didn’t like the retcon about Nicholas for example (It just seemed off character for Cally). And I didn’t like the closure for Kara. Angel or not angel, but just vanishing? Gah. And what about curing Roslin’s cancer and then having it come back?

    Sorry you can’t just go on about how realistic the show is and that there will be no deus ex machinations and then pull something like that off without losing your credibility or having your viewers scratch their heads.

    No doubt, Lost was great and BSG was great, but the finale clearly goes to Lost. Sorry, as a show runner

    Comment by Maith — June 11, 2010 @ 2:29 am

  17. I think this reviewer is a shill for the people behind “Lost,” who have embarassed themselves before the entire nation.

    BSG’s ending only paid homage to the spiritual stuff, while still keeping us guessing as to whether there couldn’t have been a rational explanation for the supernatural events we saw after all. We always knew, as well, that the humans would find Earth and become our ancestors. Neat, clean and entirely plausible.

    Lost’s ending, however, shoved spirituality down our throats, broke every promise that the characters weren’t caught in Purgatory, that everything would be explained rationally, then an ending was tacked on so hurriedly, it makes one wonder if it wasn’t written an hour before it went into production and only after someone’s old aunt gave it a thumbs up.

    For that, I will never forgive them. Perhaps 20 years from now, nostalgia will kick in and a decent group of writers will give Lost a motion picture re-make the story deserves.

    Comment by baycityroller1 — June 11, 2010 @ 2:47 am

  18. “By the end of the series, Lost pretty clearly implied that resurrection wasn’t possible.”

    Sayid in the temple spring.

    “Lost has the edge here because the Island’s world was given enough latitude to accommodate life after death.”

    Given the uber religious themes of BSG from the pilot episode of the show, I think it’s fair to say that Lost wasn’t the only show with enough latitude to accomodate life after death.

    Actually, I find angels and supernatural elements more acceptable in BSG because the show clearly points to one true higher power. Lost’s angels, spirirts, and miraculous resuscitations stem from a mysterious glowing pool of water in a cave protected by a cork… or a totally unexplained smoke monster. Lost blatantly makes a point of not pointing to one true God/power by the various religious symbology/philosophy juxtaposed throughout the course of the show.

    Comment by Brooke — June 11, 2010 @ 9:50 am

  19. I should follow that up by saying that Lost and BSG were two of my favorite television series of all time followed closely by Twin Peaks.

    I actually found closure and contentment with both series finales; both in different ways. BSG was a fresh ending (at least to me) where there was a lot of closure and tied up loose ends. Lost left many loose ends, and while I feel that the writers cheated a bit by taking the “use your own interpretation” approach, I am still able to come to terms with almost everything on the show.

    To me, BSG was a space/drama/thriller and Lost was a supernatural/drama/mystery.

    Comment by Brooke — June 11, 2010 @ 9:57 am

  20. Joey,

    They mentioned in one season the polar bears were brought to the island by DHARMA for experiments. Eventually the remaining bears got loose from the cage and migrated to the bigger island. Remember Charlotte also found a polar bear skeleton at the ‘exit point’ in Tunisia. Like the DHARMA guys teleported it as Ben and Locke did in later seasons.
    All in all both were enjoyable but I agree that Lost left their story open early on the the supernatural whereas in Battle Star Gallactica they gave hints here and there but didn’t bother to directly address it until the ending. Lost felt a more complete story than BSG but both are still good.

    Comment by Briguy — June 11, 2010 @ 12:20 pm

  21. to the supernatural*

    Comment by Briguy — June 11, 2010 @ 12:21 pm

  22. I don’t see how BSG didn’t stick to its roots. One of the main themes throughout BSG was the role religion should play on a day to day running of any great society. Cylons destroyed based on religious persecution, and Rosilin made decisions based on religious preminition even early on. I mean they never explain which was the “right” religion but that salvation could be found with it, but civilization could be destroyed with it.

    Comment by Joe W — June 11, 2010 @ 2:11 pm

  23. […] Judging the Series Finales: ‘Lost’ vs. ‘Battlestar Galactica’ – the fine folks at Geeks of Doom (thanks Eve and Dave!) let me write another post using the Broadcasting Brain pseudonym (clever, huh?).  Lost and BSG are two of my all time favorite shows and it was pretty easy for me to crank out hundreds of words of opinion about the two finales.  The post hit the front page of, much to my surprise. […]

    Pingback by Broadcasting Brain — June 11, 2010 @ 8:30 pm

  24. You know something, you guys may have a valid point about Sayid’s apparent resurrection. They made it pretty clear that he died and then he pretty clearly was walking and talking afterward. Thanks for pointing that out.

    I really suggest that you read Brad Templeton’s essay on the BSG finale – he does a good job of deconstructing it.

    Also point taken about Lost’s female characters: they weren’t as well developed as Kara Thrace, Laura Roslin, or the Cylons.

    Comment by Mark Dykeman — June 12, 2010 @ 10:38 am

  25. Lost may have been a little sappy, but at least the ending offered a happy thought. And at least it respected is characters.

    BSG has everyone simply deciding to split up into small, unsustainable groups with no infrastructure on a prehistoric planet without any cleared farm land. That’s an obvious recipe for an ugly, quick death no matter how you slice it, which is unwittingly admitted by reading that line from the National Geographic about how Hera (Mite Eve) died young. All for the plan of some advanced race/God/whatever that makes no sense. Basically, they were bacteria from which some advanced race/God/whatever wanted to salvage a little genetic material for its next Petri dish. Their struggle was meaningless, they aren’t remembered, they contributed nothing to us, and then they all decided to commit mass suicide for no reason at all. I guess God wanted it that way.

    At least Lost didn’t end with them eating each other and having sex with cave men.

    Comment by daily — June 14, 2010 @ 8:19 pm

  26. BSG – never have I been so disappointed and heart broken with a series finale. So much so that I can’t even begin to think about re-watching that series. One of my favorite shows of all time was completely ruined for me with that ending.

    Lost left many loose ends, yes, but still a satisfying ending for the characters I had grown to love.

    @daily – “At least Lost didn’t end with them eating each other and having sex with cave men.” LOL exactly

    Comment by Melissa — June 15, 2010 @ 9:52 am

  27. Lost was imperfect but still liked its characters in the end.

    BSG turned its characters into a bad punch line.

    “At least Lost didn’t end with them eating each other and having sex with cave men.” Me, too-exactly. Can’t rewatch any of it.

    Comment by Cindy G — June 15, 2010 @ 3:38 pm

  28. BSG was the better show all the way. My reason is that they didn’t mislead people throughout the entire series. BSG(Caprica) didn’t hide the religious aspect of the show so it didn’t feel like a slap in the face. I felt Lost hit me at the end with it. Lost has achieved one thing, I never hated a TV show in my life, I’m normally apathetic to a show I don’t like, but I despise Lost because of the ending

    Comment by LostSucked — June 16, 2010 @ 12:24 am

  29. “At least Lost didn’t end with them eating each other and having sex with cave men.”

    That pretty much sums it up. And honestly, it’s not exactly setting the bar high. Shouldn’t we be able to expect not eating themselves or having sex with cave men out of anything that has any pretensions of being taken seriously as a drama?

    I wasn’t overwhelmed by the Lost ending, but Battlestar Galactica is only good for a Robot Chicken skit at this point.

    Comment by DP — June 16, 2010 @ 12:32 am

  30. I have to say BSG had the better finale in my opinion and I do think your (like most lovers of the Lost finale) reason for loving it so much is mostly based aroung sentimentality. They have happy endings, YAY! From season 1 of BSG it was obvious a higher power had Baltar working for it, they made that clear so the idea of angels isn’t far fetched in that universe.

    And to admit, one of my favorite episodes of Lost is Across the Sea, did it stick out like a soar thumb? Yes but it had to be its own thing, so no I didn’t have a problem with the magical elements of Lost as soon as you see a smoke monster you have to say “there’s some mystical crap going on, my problem with Lost’s finale is that it left plots dangling left and right, much more so than BSG, it also completely strayed from its science fiction elements in the end and when you whole 4th season is sci fi that’s dropping the ball to leave it out of the finale.

    Comment by speakillkid — June 16, 2010 @ 5:58 pm

  31. I thought both were bad. I hated BSG’s finale more than Lost (maybe because it was first). Both gave me, “Wait….. WHAT?! That’s the ending?!?!?!” moments. LOL

    Comment by Steph — June 27, 2010 @ 9:26 pm

  32. Both, btw, killed their re-watchability in my eyes. Lost with it’s flash afterlife stupidity and unanswered questions on the island. BSG with it’s sex with cavemen (lol daily!), poof disappearing angel Kara, flying all their metal into the sun and having the survivors trek off into the wilds to die alone on a planet they have no understanding of what they can eat or what might want to eat them.

    Comment by Steph — June 27, 2010 @ 9:40 pm

  33. Nothing can possibly compare to Battlestar Galactica. That was a once in a lifetime experience.

    Ron Moore is very talented. I know that. So I sat through a somewhat lackluster Season 4 with plot and character slowly taking on water. I prepared myself for a finale that might be somewhat disappointing, secure in the knowledge that it was still a well above average series overall. And than… WHAM! Right up side the head.

    I had never seen anything so lazy and idiotic in my life. And Ron Moore is very talented. And yet there it was–flashbacks by the gross, a blatant admission they no longer had a story to tell and were trying to fake it; a battle scene that really makes no sense after a buildup in previous episodes that didn’t make a whole lot of sense; a pitiful joke of an Opera House; mass suicide (that’s what it was)for no reason at all; and, to top it off, some God with a plan that’s stupid on its face. That meant nothing. So those people and their struggle meant asolutely nothing. It was just a bunch of stupid stuff that happened stupidly.

    Ron Moore is talented. So what in God’s name happened? I’d really like to know. I really would. Because I never saw a better series end more wretchedly, and I hope never to see another like it.

    Comment by Judith — June 30, 2010 @ 1:16 am

  34. That’s pretty much the finale I watched, Judith. To this day I’m still vaguely amazed that a show I admired so much could end in a manner that wouldn’t be out of place on Mystery Science Theater. How exactly did that happen? In a way, it’s a real achievement of sorts.

    But honestly, I never realized how bad it truly was until I read this fan fiction on the Internet called “Sometimes a Stupid Notion.” It takes up where the show left off and, after making fun of it, actually repairs all the damage in a “Season 5”, makes sense out of the nonsense, and ends in truly epic fashion. And if a fan fiction can do that, there’s really no excuse for what we saw.

    Comment by Calvin — June 30, 2010 @ 12:57 pm

  35. BSG wins. Hands down. Lost wasn’t a complete let down but it had nowhere near the impact for me that BSG did. Just the thought of the old girl buckling on that last jump is enough to bring a tear to my eye.

    Comment by Edward — July 9, 2010 @ 9:55 am

  36. Lost had the best finale. It wasn’t spectacular, but it respected its characters and didn’t ruin the whole thing.

    By the time Battlestar limped across the finish line, I was just hoping for something that wasn’t awful. I didn’t get it. The desperate attempt to create some link with us was poorly thought out and just left everyone to die in squalor and misery for no purpose.

    Comment by Miriam — July 11, 2010 @ 5:02 pm

  37. BSG had the better finale. LOST made all the time spent watching it feel like a waste. I am sure the posters on this board could have written a better one. I would have preferred if it was all in Hurley’s head in the mental institution with names (Locke, Hume, etc) picked from books on a shelf Usual suspects style than the shiit that was written.

    Importantly BSG as compared to LOST:
    1) Provided Closure for the PLOT that validated the use of the middle seasons
    2) You learn explicitly how everything started and how everything ended with all the characters
    3) Religion was used in a manner that was similar to how it was used throughout the series. In BSG in every episode someone mentions “God” or “Gods.” In LOST they used it to distract from telling the story of the island and the characters leaving the island that we wanted to know. The “Faith” was always faith in the island itself. The ending never answered the island question, but instead focused on purgatory and the Christian Faith guided by “Christian Shepard”

    Hanging questions such as:
    “What is the island / how did it start?”
    “How did Locke heal / walk on the island?”
    “What happened to Walt who was so important at the beginning?”
    “Why isn’t Nadia with Sayid? … Shannon? Really? Come on!”

    It also says something that episodes of BSG can stand on their own. A random episode of LOST is just as satisfying as the series overall — Unsatisfying that is!

    JJ Abrams knows how to write Season 1, but not how to finish the story. Same problem with Alias. Its unfortunate because Season 1 of LOST was so good and then it just went downward from there…

    Comment by J — July 12, 2010 @ 6:43 pm

  38. Both finales were disappointing, they didn’t offer any reasonable explanations. Both were overly religious, preachy and pompous, but at the same time incredibly shallow.

    Both showed that the writers didn’t really have a central plan or idea what to do with the series beyond the initial premise. For me it was a complete letdown on both fronts.

    Comment by Ben Curly — September 1, 2010 @ 4:12 pm

  39. Having watched both from beginning to end, I can say that the finales of both left me feeling a bit disappointed (wanting more and/or different conclusions) and a bit satisfied (with great emotional portrayals and moments of drama/action) – stuck in the middle.

    With anything in life, you can’t satisfy everybody and with someone else’s story, it can not conclude for everybody satisfactorily – given.

    As a man more of science, I had a few issues with resolutions of faith (the get of jail free card on things that can’t be explained nor attempted), and the logical course versus the melodramatic scenarios.

    Both shows were clever, especially in how they tried or did wrap-up their storyline bibles to point out that they had a plan from the beginning or such. The overall tone of the Lost series was much lighter than BSG, but the mostly episodic presentation of BSG is less of a puzzle and can be revisited easier. I have no intentions (for the foreseeable future) of rewatching Lost, but I have bought the 1st and 2nd seasons of BSG, so the interest is there – though not intensely.

    I do believe that my disappointments with elements of BSG did follow me into the finale of Lost and wonder if that holds true for other viewers as well?

    Lost finale grade: C
    Lost series grade: B

    BSG finale grade: B-
    BSG series grade: A

    Comment by Thomas Earl — November 16, 2010 @ 1:03 pm

  40. In a challenge worst finale episodes, I would take “Lost” over any other show sight unseen. The “Lost” finale and, actually, the entire last season of the show, ruined the series completely. “Lost” proved to be nothing but a daytime soap opera permeated with a mishmash of random and pointless philosophical/scientific mumbo jumbo that was in no way tied together by the psuedo-christian themed ending.

    Comment by tenaciousdeucer — August 30, 2012 @ 12:01 pm

  41. How did Lost have “crappy female characters”? Sun and her marriage and family, Juliet with her sister, Kate and her mother, Ana Lucia and the death of her child, Rose and her husband, etc.

    “most of whose storylines revolved around a man of some sort”

    Name a single BSG female character who doesn’t also fit into this category.

    Comment by Dylan Morgan — September 1, 2012 @ 11:16 am

  42. I don’t get these comments.

    BSG goes from a bunch of machines who believe in God and humans who discuss the possibility, no different to the real world, to actually proving that he exists but at the same time failing to address the entire point of it.

    LOST doesn’t introduce God or religion; it’s ending is completely void of any reference to a divine entity. It’s clearly established that the characters are responsible for the flash sideways, and that it’s a conscious experience upon death (further evidenced by a rewatch, which solves so many of those “unanswered mysteries”).

    BSG fell off the bandwagon halfway through season 3, and characters just bounced between each other; relationships, pregnancies, etc. for the majority of the episodes before rushing towards its finale. Look so far as Baltar’s story in season 4; atrocious.

    I’m not saying that LOST’s ending is perfect, but a lot of people (especially here) seem to ignore the rest of the season/series and look specifically towards this final episode for all of the answers.

    Rewatch both series through and then decide, because I’ve done so and I can tell you that LOST stands up a lot better than Battlestar Galactica, following their grand finales.

    At the end of the day, LOST explained…

    a) the reason why they were there
    b) what they were supposed to do
    c) why they were supposed to do it
    d) them doing it
    e) them leaving the island

    Cool, there you go – narrative success.

    BSG just answered what it could with “God did it” and then failed to explain the reason why God did.

    If God is in fact just waiting for what Angel-Caprica 6 suggests, then a) why interfere? and b) again, what is the point?

    Complain all you want, but at least you know the reasons with LOST.

    Comment by Dylan Morgan — September 1, 2012 @ 11:25 am

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