In the comments of another post here at The Lost Blog, one of our regular readers who goes by the nickname “frenchy_florims” asked why the seconds season of Lost wasn’t as popular as the first one.
First we need to clarify things a bit, while it’s true that Lost season 1 was very popular and the second season lost some of the viewers who followed the show during the first season, a recent survey showed that Lost is the second most popular TV show in the world, following only CSI:Miami (which in my opinion is the worst of the three CSI shows). Lost is still a very popular show.
But why hasn’t the second season been as well received as the first one was?
One of the reasons may have been that viewers got tired of the irregular dates when new episodes aired. When people turned on the TV to watch a new episode of Lost they where disappointed to see a repeat of an old episode which they had already seen. It wouldn’t surprise me if this frustration made many fans stop watch Lost since they couldn’t keep track of when a new episode was due to air.
The new solution
Due to massive critique by fans, ABC and the Lost producers have tried to fix this problem for the upcoming season 3. The new solution is two blocks of new episodes, first a block consisting of 6 or 7 new episodes (one per week) starting October 4th with “A Tale of Two Cities”.
When this first “mini season” ends, the new series Day Break will take Lost’s place for 13 weeks. In February Lost will come back strong with new episodes (likely 16 or 17) every week all the way through season finale.
Season 2 was different
Another possible explanation for the second season’s lower ratings is the fact that Lost has changed a lot. During season 1 Lost was a bit mysterious but it wasn’t really science-fiction. It was a show about people who crashed on an island and tried to survive there. Then all this “mythology” with the Others, hatches, and smoke monsters was introduced to us. Some liked these things and kept on enjoying the show, others didn’t like it and preferred watching “regular shows” where “regular” but dramatic things happen (Desperate Housewives, Gray’s Anatomy and so on) instead.
The thing people have to understand is that Lost is a very complex show and it will not be everyone’s cup of tea. Some fans will love what they see and keep watching, some will not because the show goes beyond what’s expected to explore human nature and the many questions we may face in various situations of our lives.
Personally I was a bit disappointed by season 2 at one time because I believed that the writers had taken a bigger bite of the apple than they could handle, but I kept on watching and Lost hasn’t ceased to fascinate me. The mythology and the mysterious story behind the island and the characters is the core of the show. I just hope that the executives don’t forget this in the pursuit to make the upcoming season brighter and more adventure orientated, because if they do, they might loose those of us who really like Lost.
What is your take? Was the second season not as good as the first one?