By Eric Kohn | Eric Kohn June 4, 2010 at 4:40AM
In an endeavor that unabashedly cribs from "The Phantom Edit," some dissatisfied "Lost" fan has decided to re-cut several episodes of the show's final season in the hopes of creating a more satisfying version.
Regardless of whether or not the end result works on any level, the project displays remarkable ambition, and I'm sure fandom scholar Henry Jenkins and his devout followers will love sifting through it. But the specifics of the goals at hand make me skeptical. "The main idea is to remove the Sideways world," writes the creator on the project's site.
This alternate universe, which was introduced at the beginning of the final season and envisioned the castaways lives if their plane had actually arrived at its destination rather than crashed on the shore of a mysterious island, was hardly the show's greatest flaw. In fact, many people I know delighted in the prospects of the Sideways world: Was it some sort of virtual reality entrapment a la "The Matrix"? Or perhaps a dream?
But it was the half-assed explanation for this universe as some kind of joint purgatory that really ticked me off. Can we fix that? Probably not without new footage.
As I see it, the only way to really "fix" "Lost" is to keep identifying, talking about and even reveling in its flaws as a means of recognizing why the show was worth watching in the first place. Or you can just write fan fiction.