April 27th, 2021

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From its opening moments featuring the aftermath of a plane crash on a tropical island, the television series Lost (2004-2010) became one of the most intriguing and talked about programmes in the era of digital media. This contribution to the Constellations series is the first full-length account of Lost and explores in detail what made this series both a popular hit with critics and the public (as ‘quality’ or ‘must-see’ TV), and also a series accruing intense fan scrutiny (as cult telefantasy). Lost is discussed in terms of its generic hybridity, and in particular how it incorporates and reframes familiar tropes of science fiction in the context of a Survivor reality TV-style plot on the one hand and as a ‘mystery box’ of extremely complex hermeneutic codes and hyperdiegesis on the other. Further, it explores the ways in which Lost uses science fictional narrative approaches to the intersections between themes of gender, identity, community, science, faith and philosophic thought. The book also discusses the series’ relationship with its narrative extensions in online games, merchandise, secondary texts and paratexts. Constellations: Lost is thus an important retrospective examination of a significant television series that was also a pioneering transmedia text.

Author Information

Brigid Cherry is an independent scholar, retired from the position of Research Fellow in Screen Media at St Mary’s University, Twickenham. She is the author of Cult Media, Fandom and Textiles (2018). She has published work on Doctor Who fan fiction in Doctor Who: Twelfth Night (2018), fan discourses in Doctor Who: The Eleventh Hour (2015), and fan handicrafting in Doctor Who: Fan Phenomena (2013). Other recent publications include studies of Twin Peaks memes in Twin Peaks: The Return (2019), fan totems in Beasts of the Deep: Sea Creatures and Popular Culture (2018), and feminine identification in Clive Barker: Dark Imaginer (2015). She also has contributions to the upcoming volumes Alice in Wonderland on Film and in Popular Culture, The Cinema of Tobe Hooper: No Pleasure in Killing, and Doctor Who: New Dawn - Essays on the Jodie Whittaker era (which she has co-edited with Matt Hills and Andrew O’Day).