imageAs you should know if you either follow the ebb and flow of popular culture or if you're friends with/related to someone who's spent the past six years telling you about polar bears, smoke monsters, four-toed statues and the Others, tonight is the series finale of Lost.

I've seen every episode of the show, followed it from the initial plane crash to the string of increasingly haphazard deaths that have marked this season. And as we wait tonight to see how it all ends, there are some basic realizations I've come to:

1.) The creators didn't have nearly the level of intent and design I'd hoped they had. Even if everything tonight ends up answering most of the major questions, it's become clear from this season's plotting (which has at times resembled more of an effort to fill out Wikipedia pages than an effort to tell a story) that they're just wrapping up the plot as things occur to them; the season's best episodes have been the ones that are focused on final realizations of the characters as characters rather than telling us how X thing existed or Y thing came into being.

2.) We're probably never going to know why Walt was special. Malcolm David Kelley was one of the best parts of the first few seasons of Lost, but he was also a 12-year-old cast as a 10-year-old who just turned 18. And he got taller and started looking like an adult. And all of a sudden, this story that took place over a few months didn't really fit with this rapidly-growing young man's stature; even moving it forward three years in time (it currently takes place in 2007) means that you have to explain why a 13-year-old looks like he's going to college.

The mysteries surrounding Walt were the driving force of the first half of the show, leading to murder, defection and general conflict. And now the show's morphed into a far larger conflict between the basic forces of the island, winnowed down its cast and gained a larger metaphysical aspect that's led (intentionally) away from those early storylines. There will be a resolution to the current story arc, but it's highly unlikely that we'll get back to Walt's initial "special" nature. Or why he showed up in visions to people dripping wet and speaking backwards.

3.) Locke was the best character on the show. Just saying.

Okay, use this thread to discuss thoughts, theories or complaints about Allison Janney's complete lack of effort at Latin.