157 Views

Lost in 24: the end of an era

Two seminal TV shows come to an end this year: they are Lost and 24. I’ve personally invested a lot of time in both of these (in the case of the latter, almost a decade of my life) so I’m not ashamed to say that I (along with millions of others) will miss them when they are gone. Alas, as they both come to a natural conclusion, we ask what was the key to their success?

Lost was a critical and commercial success. Or rather, it still is. In its freshman year, the show averaged 16 million viewers in the US. Numbers were expectedly lower in the UK where Channel 4 had managed to scoop the rights to the show but it was still a huge success and created many ‘water-cooler’ moments.

Sky One then came sweeping before the third season and reportedly made a deal worth around £500,000 an episode and so Lost was lost to pay TV – if you’ll excuse the pun. This wasn’t the best news for fans in Blighty but the hardcore fan base was already established.

The producers tap into the mindset of desperation for information. By drip-feeding answers, they managed to create a solid, cult following; the latest series has averaged around 10m viewers – down on the original 16m but still no laughing matter. It’s almost a drug. You just want to know that little bit more.

In a bold move, the producers of Lost decided on an end date for the show three seasons in. This was a decisive and highly unusual move. Networks in the US generally like to milk their shows as much as they can – especially if they prove successful. Just look at the ageing CSI franchise. In fact, the focus on this is such that all actors which are signed on to a new show have to sign a seven year contract, just in case the show proves successful. With Lost, the producers came to an amicable solution during the third season: they promised the network three more seasons but asked to be allowed to do what they want. This meant that from Season 4, the show went into fifth gear – aiming for where it has got to now, the endgame – allowing the characters and storylines to be developed to an extend arguably never before seen on any TV show.

This season 24 has averaged around 11m viewers in the US. This is again much lower in the UK as Sky One, in a similar move to their acquisition of Lost, poached the show from BBC 2 after the second season. I never quite understood this: Sky One are paying FOX for the show – both are subsidiaries of Murdoch’s News Corp – that can’t be a good business model. Nonetheless, much like Lost the show had already established a hardcore cult following and remains hugely popular.

24 is and will remain a ground breaking series. The real-time format was an entirely new approach and allowed the show to explore subject matters in a different way. It is for this reason that 24 will also stand the test of time and remain as one of the most critical TV shows of the decade. As I already mentioned, I believe this to be case with Lost, too. People that were initially put off after the first or second season due to the nature of questions posed can now revisit it knowing that an end is in sight.

Nonetheless, this time next year, some of my favourite characters will not be on television on a regular basis. This makes me sad. However, I can rest in the fact that I watched both shows from the start to finish and gained from my investment. Boxsets the entire series (season 1-8 for 24 – there is also a feature long episode called 24: Redemption – and season 1-6 for Lost) will undoubtedly be available within a few months. I reckon after a few more months the prices will crash. So, if you have some time to kill make sure you buy them and enjoy two fantastic shows.

Get the best viral stories straight into your inbox!

Don't worry, we don't spam

Leave a Reply

Join the Badger Team

Apply today!

Latest Posts

INCREDIBLES 2: The Sequel with a Feminist Twist
Film & Theatre
9 views
Film & Theatre
9 views

INCREDIBLES 2: The Sequel with a Feminist Twist

Anonymous - September 18, 2018

One key film in the development of anyone who grew up in the early 2000s was The Incredibles (2004). It’s comedy, vibrancy, and general sense of fun…

France in Fine Fettle
Sports
23 views
Sports
23 views

France in Fine Fettle

Anonymous - September 17, 2018

Prior to the start of the quadrennial tournament this summer, football fans across the world grew sceptical over Russia’s credentials and ability to host the most prestigious…

Dive into Brightonian Culture
Arts
20 views
Arts
20 views

Dive into Brightonian Culture

Anonymous - September 17, 2018

Boredom is impossible when you throw yourself into everything this weird and wonderful city has to offer. The specific and unique cultural wonders of Brighton are indeed…

Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?
Arts
47 views
Arts
47 views

Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?

Anastasia Konstantinidou - September 15, 2018

During this year’s Pride Festival, Brighton had the honour of welcoming international pop star and voice of the early 2000s, Britney Spears, to the main stage. Undoubtedly,…

Union obliterates the debate – unwritten requirement used to shut down free speech debate
Campus News
1119 views1
Campus News
1119 views1

Union obliterates the debate – unwritten requirement used to shut down free speech debate

Jordan Wright - April 27, 2018

Student society Liberate the Debate’s most recent event was cancelled over a lack of compliance with the Students' Union's (USSU) requirement for a neutral chair - a…

Sussex Lecturer Accused of Making Transphobic Comments Ahead of Brighton Trans Pride 2018
News
50 views1
News
50 views1

Sussex Lecturer Accused of Making Transphobic Comments Ahead of Brighton Trans Pride 2018

Jessica Hubbard - September 15, 2018

Kathleen Stock, a philosophy Lecturer at Sussex, was accused of making transphobic comments in July 2018. This followed various interviews and blog posts by Stock. Stock told…

Welcome 2018 Freshers!
Campus News
55 views
Campus News
55 views

Welcome 2018 Freshers!

Billie-Jean Johnson - September 15, 2018

Ah, Freshers. You’ve no idea the amazing year you have ahead of you! As you read this now, you’ve probably met your flatmates and maybe even met…

A conversation with Kathleen Stock on Transgender Identity
Opinion
46 views
Opinion
46 views

A conversation with Kathleen Stock on Transgender Identity

Jessica Hubbard - September 15, 2018

Kathleen Stock, a philosophy lecturer at Sussex University, met with controversy after criticising the government’s reform of the Gender Recognition Act (2004). The amendment would ‘de-medicalise’ the…

Verve Couture – Musicality, kitsch & ignition: the beginning of a series
Arts
381 views
Arts
381 views

Verve Couture – Musicality, kitsch & ignition: the beginning of a series

Ricardo Reverón Blanco - June 17, 2018

Pictured: Zac Black At Proud Cabaret audiences were spellbound as if at night at the circus, yet this was not like Angela Carter’s magical realist novel; Verve…

Fleabag on stage at The Old Market – review
Arts
386 views
Arts
386 views

Fleabag on stage at The Old Market – review

Florence Dutton - June 11, 2018

[caption id="attachment_35513" align="alignnone" width="2400"] Fleabag at Soho Theatre[/caption] Last Monday at 8pm at Brighton’s The Old Market, I sat myself down in my theatre seat eagerly awaiting…

Fleabag preview
Arts
358 views
Arts
358 views

Fleabag preview

Florence Dutton - June 2, 2018

[caption id="attachment_35513" align="alignnone" width="2400"] Fleabag at Soho Theatre[/caption] Following the mass success of the Bafta award-winning BBC Series, DryWrite and Soho Theatre are about to hit the…

Brighton Festival: Ezra Furman at the Dome
Arts
423 views
Arts
423 views

Brighton Festival: Ezra Furman at the Dome

Georgia Grace - June 1, 2018

Having completed my final semester of university with modules on punk history and queer arts, it was fitting that I rounded off my end-of-assessment celebrations by attending…

Arts
440 views

The Tempest review

Georgia Grace - May 30, 2018

As the sun begins to set over Hove Green, tinnies of Red Stripe are cracked open, tartan blankets are strewn, and families tuck into their picnic hampers.…

A Glass Half Empty review
Arts
379 views
Arts
379 views

A Glass Half Empty review

Georgia Grace - May 27, 2018

For those of us coming to the end of another year of university study, the prospect of careers, marriages and babies may seem a long way off.…

DollyWould at The Old Market review
Arts
357 views
Arts
357 views

DollyWould at The Old Market review

Alex Hutson - May 27, 2018

Sh!t Theatre’s DollyWould is a hilarious, thoughtful and experimental performance piece. The award winning show has the Sh!t Theatre duo integrating comedy, storytelling, personal experience and music.…

UCU Launch Petition to End the ‘Hostile Environment’ at Sussex
Campus News
540 views
Campus News
540 views

UCU Launch Petition to End the ‘Hostile Environment’ at Sussex

Billie-Jean Johnson - May 26, 2018

The Sussex branch of the University and College Union (UCU) has launched a petition calling for Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell to end the 'hostile environment' at Sussex. The…

Arts
306 views

Shakespeare in the sun – The Tempest preview

Georgia Grace - May 24, 2018

In a world of dystopian King Lears and female Hamlets, Shakespeare’s classics are constantly being reimagined for the modern day. There’s something oddly refreshing then about the…

Review: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)
Arts
896 views
Arts
896 views

Review: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)

Sophie Coppenhall - May 23, 2018

What a phenomenal contrast these two films present when watched side-by-side. In essence, together they are capable of tracing inner and outer metamorphoses of their subjects. The…

Dollywould at The Old Market preview
Arts
365 views
Arts
365 views

Dollywould at The Old Market preview

Alex Hutson - May 22, 2018

From the 22nd May - 25th May 2018 DollyWould will be showing at The Old Market. An exciting new show, presented by Sh!t Theatre, who won the…

Exhibition: Io-sono Fedilouu
Artist Focus
444 views
Artist Focus
444 views

Exhibition: Io-sono Fedilouu

Ricardo Reverón Blanco - May 16, 2018

Last week artist Fedilou made her debut exhibition in the downstairs space of Morelli Zorelli, a quaint vegan Italian restaurant in Hove, featuring a collection of intimate…

Interview with Philosophy faculty and COGS director Ron Chrisley
Interview
379 views
Interview
379 views

Interview with Philosophy faculty and COGS director Ron Chrisley

Nikolaos Manesis - May 15, 2018

Ron Chrisley is a Reader in Philosophy, on the faculty of the Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science, and is the director of COGS (Centre for Cognitive Science).…