If Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows wasn’t a magical experience for Lost co-creator and co-showrunner Damon Lindelof, at least it was an eye-opening one.
The Daily Beast has an open letter from Lindelof filled with his thoughts on why he hated the film adaptation of Deathly Hallows. Among those reasons is the decision to split the adaptation into two portions, as Lindelof argues that Order of the Phoenix had a higher page count and managed just fine as one movie. But regardless of his contempt towards the latest Harry Potter adaptation, Lindelof said he’s still a fan of the franchise — and now that he’s suffered disappointment as a fan, he feels that he can relate to those who hated the way that Lost ended.
Lindelof begins his editorial by describing what it’s like to be the co-creator of Lost, saying:
The most awesome part about being one of the primary storytellers of a popular television show is hearing how much its most loyal fans hate it.
Oh. Wait. It’s actually not awesome. It hurts like hell.
I know—boo hoo for me. That’s the price of doing business, isn’t it? If I’m asking you to invest your time and attention in a story I’m telling, it’s your right to tell me that you hate that story.
You just don’t get to call yourself a “fan.”
At least that is what I had always believed.
Lindelof said that this belief was thoroughly shaken by the fact that despite his disappointing Deathly Hallows experience, he still considers himself a huge fan of the series — a realization that has him apologizing to the legions of fans that didn’t support Lost’s controversial ending earlier this year.
I still love Harry Potter. Deeply and profoundly. I will read these books to my son when he’s old enough not to be terrified of the dementors. And I will absolutely be crammed into my Gryffindor shirt, the very first in line to see Deathly Hallows, Part 2, which is guaranteed to make me cry at the end just as the book did.
My point is that I’m still a fan. A huge fan. Huge.
And so I sincerely and genuinely apologize to all those whom I have stripped of their Lost fandom just for complaining about the stuff you didn’t like. It doesn’t make you any less a fan. In fact…
It just makes you honest.
I respect that. And I’m genuinely sorry for ever feeling otherwise.
A bit rambling at times, Lindelof’s essay remains refreshing in that it’s his lengthiest and most candid response to the fans that criticized the ending of Lost, culminating in the conclusion that it’s okay to hate the way the show was finished and still consider yourself a fan. It’s interesting to hear such a declaration from a guy like Lindelof on a show like Lost, especially given the fact that many fans did feel burned by the show’s “final twist” and overall lack of resolution.
What do you think of Lindelof’s comments on fandom: can you passionately hate the way a story turned out and still consider yourself a fan of the story? Have Lindelof’s words somehow validated your own feelings towards the legacy and conclusion of Lost, or do you not need a creator to tell you how you’re supposed to feel about their material? Taking that one step further, do you think Lindelof’s realization is a genuine one, or is he simply licking his wounds in public after the considerable backlash towards the way Lost wrapped up? Go ahead and weigh in for yourself in yon comments section.