I've been watching Lost since the first episode, and mostly, I've loved it. Lost is the rare TV show that rewards attention and study: if you get into it, you can enjoy it even more. Yes, I'm one of those, and just watching the show, one day a week, isn't enough for me. I need more little doses of Lost during the rest of the week.
The only limit to Lost fandom is how many hours of your life you want to spend on it. There are dozens of blogs, podcasts, web sites, and other places to sink your time. This post is based on what I do, which takes up about half an hour a day beyond watching the show itself. You can spend every waking hour reading, writing, and thinking about Lost if you want; you can check out Alltop for finding lots more Lost stuff. And you better hurry, because Lost ends forever in May, when season 6 finishes up.
Real Lost fans hate spoilers. We know that Lost is much more fun when experienced by watching the show, rather than digging up info from leaked scripts, location shooting info, etc. The sites and activities listed in this post adhere strictly to the "no spoilers" policy, except where otherwise noted.
Lostpedia is a superb resource. If you're not sure about a character, episode, or topic, or you need a recap of a long-ago episode, Lostpedia is your friend. Bookmark it; know it; be in awe of it.
And now, here's my guide to a Lost week:
- Watch the previous episode "enhanced" at 8 PM. (UPDATE Or not. See this comment for more about the potential spoiler qualities of enhanced episodes.) Remember Pop-up Video? This is kind of like that. ABC often (but not always) reruns the previous week's Lost, only this time in a so-called enhanced verson that includes clever omniscient captions that add valuable information to help you figure out what you're seeing.
- Watch the show, and avoid social networks until you do. Lost comes on at 9 PM. If you're on the west coast like me, you shut down Twitter and Facebook three hours earlier, when the show starts in the eastern time zone.
- Read Alan Sepinwall. After you've watched the show, you'll want a dose of community. If your partner is off watching American Idol and is not a Lost fan, read TV critic Alan Sepinwall's blog, where he reliably posts a review of the new episode even before it's finished airing on the west coast. Alan's review and the comments will provide more info and let you compare notes on the new episode.
- Read James Poniewozik. He's Time's TV critic and he also usually posts a review soon after the show airs. After you read that, you can go to bed.
- Read alt.tv.lost. This Usenet/Google Group is a great way to see what others learned and thought of the newest episode. The best info is usually posted by Wed. or Thu. each week. And spoilers are occasionally posted here, so stay away if you never ever want to see a spoiler.
- Read "42 Inch Televison". This blog provides an insightful, enthusiastic take on each week's episode.
- Read Flash Sideways. For each episode, ABC compiles a list of differences between the original timeline and the flash-sideways, 815-landed-safely timeline introduced this season. Super-dry, but useful.
- Watch Lost Untangled. Each week ABC creates this hilarious self-deprecating episode recap featuring action figures, puppets, and dialog that imitates the real actors.
Thursday - Friday
- Listen to the Official Audio Podcast. This podcast features the comedy team of Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof, aka Darlton, Lost's showrunning executive producers. Never a spoiler, often insightful, always hilarious. The audio podcast is sometimes replaced by a video podcast, which is not as fulfilling, because Darlton don't usually appear.
Saturday - Sunday
- Read TVGasm. A biting, insanely funny, sometimes vicious recap of the previous week's episode. If you don't laugh out loud, you're probably taking the show too seriously.
- Read Erika Olson's "Long Live Locke". Erica recaps each episode in depth and explores the meaning and direction of what happens. She takes the time to ponder events thoroughly, with a personal touch.
- Don't you have some work to do? A family to talk to? I mean, seriously.
Lost fans: which sites do you read? How do you make Lost last through the week?