I have to say, season 6 is fantastic. I lost interest in the show during season 4. I don't know if it was the writers' strike or what, but season 4 was awful. (Yet, for some reason, I couldn't stop watching.) Season 5 was an improvement over season 4, but the show had lost the "must-see" excitement of the first three seasons.
That has all changed.
The sixth season of LOST changed the theme of the show from time travel and pseudo-science to serious questions about evil, justice, and redemption. Here are some of the more compelling questions on my mind as the final season of LOST unfolds:
1. What will happen to Benjamin Linus? As soon as Ben was introduced on the show he became the most interesting character. It's tough to think of a character in any book, movie, or television show as evil as Ben. He is a master manipulator. Every word he says is a lie, and yet you can't stop believing him.
But in the last two seasons, Ben has been cast in a more human light. We have seen why he is as evil as he is (traumatic home life, perceived betrayal by Jacob). He has even shown signs of remorse for his crimes (especially the acts that led to the death of his daughter), and the flash sideways episode about him suggested he might not be so bad of a guy were it not for Jacob and the island.
What do we do with Ben? Do we believe that he is truly repentant? Can he be redeemed? Can we forget all of the atrocities he committed (let's not forget he killed everyone in the Dharma Initiative)? Can we help but empathize with him when he was asked about why he was joining the man in black, and he answered, "Because he'll have me"?
2. What is the point of the "flash sideways"? (For that matter, what is the plural of "flash sideways," "flash sidewayses"?)
Are they setting us up to show that life would have been worse were it not for the crash? If so, is this an attempt at theodicy? Jacob, representing the good "god," brought innocent people to the island against their will to prove to the man in black that not all people are evil. I see echoes of Job here--God and Satan having a wager over whether or not Job would curse God if Satan plagued him. But if Jacob is so good, why kill all of those people in the plane crash? Why wreck the lives of the survivors? Perhaps the flash sideways will show us that life would have been worse were it not for the crash.
Also, in the first episode of season 6, Sawyer saw that Juliet was still down in mine shaft, dying, and he said, "It didn't work." Juliet corrected him, "It did work." What did she mean by that? If it worked, then life would have gone on as in the flash sideways scenes. What do we do with the island scenes, then?
3. What is Jacob's plan for defeating the man in black? The writers have set us up for a "good god" (Jacob) versus "bad god" (the man in black) battle. When Ben killed Jacob, I thought, Huh. I guess Jacob wasn't as powerful as everyone thought he was. But, in last week's episode, Richard tried to kill Jacob (using the same knife that Ben would later use to kill him), and Jacob showed remarkable reflexes and fighting ability. This makes me think that Jacob allowed Ben to kill him. Why would he do that? If I were writing the show, it would to show that the only way sin (the man in black) could be defeated was for a good God (Jacob) to be murdered at the hands of evil men (Ben). But I'm not writing the show, so the symbolism is probably a stretch.
4. Why did actor Matthew Fox stop trying? Just kidding about that one, but Jack has become the least interesting character in the show.