Synchronizing Complexity

Curator's Note

One of Lost's most distinctive traits is its temporal play - with embedded flashbacks, replays, hints of time travel, and now flash forwards, the show creates complexity by manipulating narrative time. While fansites try to make sense of the show's chronology, the experience of synchronicity across episodes is hard to grasp through the interface of the timeline. This expertly made fan video offers a remixed perspective of the show's defining incident, the crash of Flight 815, that captures Lost's emotional engagement while synchronizing the timeline. Cutting across three seasons and multiple locations, the remix employs split-screens more typical of 24 or Timecode to highlight how many layers of action comprise Lost's narrative world. By the end of the video, with five simultaneous threads of action, we can appreciate how much mental energy goes into viewers making sense of the complex narrative world of Lost, and how the fragmented mode of storytelling contributes to our pleasurable engagements with the show.


This is an amazing video that demonstrates the effort and pleasure involved in piecing together all of the different temporal events involved in Lost (it may be a lot of work but it is all part of the fun) but also the complexity involved in the staging and co-ordination of the different narrative strands of Lost across multiple episodes and seasons. This video brought my thoughts back to Will's piece in which he talks about how the creators know that the audience is watching and rewatching the show in order to analyse every nuance. This analysis applies to the show's mythology but also to the show's chronology. We simply need to analyse the text in order to follow/piece together the story. I also really liked the 24-ness of the video. It was like reviewing a favourite show through the lens of another another favourite show.

Stacey - it's interesting that in reading through the YouTube comments on this video, the creator claims that he's not really a 24 fan. I agree that the aesthetics converge, but perhaps not intentionally. Thanks to all participants in a lively conversation this week! We'd still love to hear from some outsiders...

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