Arguably one of the most groundbreaking, innovative, and mind-bending series to come out of television in decades, J.J. Abrams Lost wowed viewers in its early seasons with its sense of isolation and confusion as the survivors of the horrific plane crash attempted to figure out where they were. Now with the series having just completed its fifth season, viewers are no longer questioning where the island is…but when the island is. With a time travelling season that left viewers and critics on the edge of their season, Buena Vista has opted to take views back to the first couple seasons on Blu-ray, in an effort to not only complete the Blu-ray collections of those who picked up the previous two seasons on the format, but to also wow viewers once again with the early episodes that wrapped so many up in the series.
With LOST: Season One: High-Definition Edition, experience the action-packed adventure that became a worldwide television event like never before. This first season set includes all twenty-five episodes of the Emmy® winning season, re-mastered for the ultimate in high definition picture and sound. Also included in the set are an underground hatch’s worth of thrilling bonus features, including unaired Lost flashbacks; exciting behind-the-scenes featurettes “Welcome to Oahu: The Making of the Pilot,” which explores the making of the series premiere episode; “The Genesis of Lost”, in which the series’ creators discuss the show’s conception; “Designing A Disaster,” which provides insight into how the look of Lost was achieved; “Before They Were Lost,” featuring cast audition tapes, and “Lost: On Location,” which spotlights the show’s Hawaiian shooting locations. Additional bonus features in the set include Bloopers, Deleted Scenes, “On Set With Jimmy Kimmel”… and more!
Ahh, Lost. Your first season was such a brilliant bit of entertainment, with one of the most expensive TV pilots ever eventually paying off for ABC as you skyrocketed in ratings with each episode. The first season posed a thousand questions to the viewer that we’re only just now getting answers to years later and it was with this first season that I truly became enamored with the idea that a TV drama can truly engulf you even more than a high-budget film. In a nutshell, the first season of Lost was just the tip of the iceberg for the story and aside from some early inclinations that something was amiss on the island with a mysterious black cloud, this first season may as well be a different story as it was nowhere near as sci-fi as the series now is.
And that’s what was so wonderful about that first season. While I had issues with the series second season if only because it answered nothing the entire time and just seemed to delight in pissing the viewer off, the first season was all about the exploration and settling of the island, with base camps on the beach and another in the caves of the island. The series also progressed slowly, with each episode roughly making up a day on the island (which it followed, to my knowledge, for awhile…up until recently when we’ve begun pole-vaulting across time lines) and the series really just did its best in creating a sense of isolation and fear.
It’s also quite interesting to return to these earlier seasons now after so many years, as you get to see a veritable cornucopia of cast members that have been killed off. Hell, the entire second season may as well been never made as I think we only retained one member of the “tail end” cast, with the rest of them all being killed throughout the season. Still, that’s for another discussion (i.e., the review of the second season), as the first season kept things relatively light, with a meaty cast of survivors that were regularly rotated throughout the season, although some saw more exposition than others (I’m looking at you, Jack).
Still the first season of Lost, as far as I’m concerned, is mandatory viewing for any TV watcher. Even if you don’t like where the series went in later seasons, it was the first season that enveloped me in its story in such a way I hadn’t felt since 24’s first season. It truly makes you love television and stare in bewilderment that in an age of relentless reality shows that something so good could have been made. While the popularity of the show has died down in recent years, the first season was one of the most watched for a reason—it was really just perfection from start to finish. Must See.
Lost arrives on Blu-ray in the usual casing that past seasons have received, with a double-wide Blu-ray case housing all the discs of the series. Included is a reflective foil/embossed slipcover and inside is a series of inserts, including $20 mail-in-rebate if you upgrade to this set over the original DVD release. Included are the always fantastic menu systems that transition seamlessly, although I still take issue with the font size on the menus as it’s a giant image with a small space occupied. Slightly irksome.
The first season boasts the weakest of the AVC encoded 1080p transfers that the series has seen on Blu-ray, but considering the other seasons featured…well, let’s face it, immaculate transfers, even taking a little drop in quality means this first season still looks amazing. Having said that the first season does feature a little less than amazing picture quality, which is really only chalked up to the sometimes un-even color palette or production values that the early episodes had. But that doesn’t really detract from the overall experience; watching this season, which I’d previously only seen in standard definition, in high definition for the first time was just such a brilliant experience. Detail I’d never seen before and colors that just popped off the screen…really, there are a few times when you look at a Blu-ray and think “Yeah, this is why the format is awesome.” Lost is one of those series that make you drop your jaw, time and time again. And the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix? Yeah, it’ll rock the house, even if the pilot’s audio is a bit uneven at times (but, hey, it’s the pilot).
Extras are all ported over from the previous DVD release and are all in standard definition, but the wealth of goodies are still delightful to watch regardless. Included:
• “The Genesis of Lost”
• “Designing a Disaster”
• “Before they were Lost” Cast auditions
• “Welcome to Oahu:” The Making of the Pilot
• The Art of Matthew Fox
• Lost @ Comicon
• Lost: On Location
• Lost Revealed – Flashbacks and deleted scenes
• Audio Commentaries (Five Total)
Overall it’s a bit disappointing that nothing new was recorded for this set (a new retrospective commentary on the pilot or something would’ve been cool, as I find it hard to believe that they could’ve foreseen where they are now with the series back when that pilot was made), but it’s still a remarkable package nonetheless. Highly Recommended for all, as even if you own the DVD release it’s a fantastic upgrade, especially with the rebate.
Lost: The Complete First Season arrives on Blu-ray on June 16th.