Tag Archives: lost

Finally got out

It’s been a couple or three months since I managed to get out and do any photography (outside of choir events), so I was pleased today when we got some bright sunshine.  Was still cold mind you, but it gave me a chance to get a couple of hours in Nottingham taking pictures.  Not very good pictures, but pictures none-the-less, and I won’t get better by sitting at home doing nothing.  So, parked in the Broadmarsh car park, walked around for a couple of hours, took some pictures, headed back to the car park.

Paid my £3 fee, took my ticket back to the car, and put it into a little pocket area on the drivers side door, like I usually do.  Drove down to the exit, opened the car window and as I reached the last ramp, went to pick up the ticket.  Which wasn’t there.  Fuck.  Pulled over into the area designed for people who’ve forgotten to pay, and checked the inside of the car.  No joy.  Got out, searched under the seats, in the door, in the back, all over.  Still no sign.  Fuck.  Locked the car, jogged back up to the 3rd level and searched around where the car had been parked, in case it blew out while I was closing the door.  Still no sign.  Still fuck.  Jogged back down to the car, and had another look.  Nope.  Gone.

So I walked over to the customer service booth, and there was a guy outside having a cigarette.  To be frank, I was expecting a tough conversation.  I asked him who was best to speak to with regards to lost tickets.  He mulled that over and said, “normally they make you pay the full day rate”.  I said, “Yep, it’s annoying, I paid my £3 but I’ve lost the ticket somewhere between putting it in the car and getting down to the exit.”  He took a draw on his fag, and said, “well, I don’t want to make you pay again, give me 5 minutes to finish this and then I’ll let you out.”  He took my name, told me to wait until I saw him to into the booth and then drive out.

Which I did.

What a nice man.  Thanks nice man, whoever you are.

You’ll be pleased to know that I drove about 80 metres and remembered that I’d put the ticket into the ticket slot on the sun visor, because I was worried about it blowing away, and then because the sun was so low in the sky, I’d popped the visor down.  Hiding the ticket.  I checked at the next set of lights, and yep, there it was.  So, thanks again nice man, I didn’t actually lose the ticket, just my mind, but you helped.  I’d have been annoyed beyond reason if I’d paid the day rate and then found the ticket.

How do you make mystery TV mysterious?

It can’t be easy making mysterious TV mysterious any more.  Sure, if it’s not popular you’ve got a chance, but as soon as it is popular you’re screwed.  In the old days, the folk in the house would talk about the plot and maybe they’d work out some of what was going on, but they wouldn’t know anything until the following week.  Perhaps someone in the house would work out Some Great Secret but you didn’t have any way of confirming it.

Maybe they chatted about it to a friend or two at work.  Perhaps students got together in bars and mused over cheap alcohol.  But eventually you had to watch and find out.  You had no contact with the writers.

Later, maybe magazines ran stories, and you could garner some information from those to share among your small circle of friends and you could enjoy yourselves discussing the possibilities.

These days, thousands of fans, maybe tens of thousands gather on forums and they pour over every aspect of the show.  The dialog, the scenes (frame by bloody frame if necessary), and they look for connections.  Connections within the show, within the other shows of the same writers and directors and producers.  They look for patterns and they talk and talk and discuss and theorise.

Writers are normal people.  They’re not super heroes with super writing powers.  They invent stuff and they research stuff and they bring to the front stuff they watched and remembered and enjoyed and twist the tale and deliver excitement.  But they’re normal folk.  So when you bring together 10,000 more normal folk they’re going to have some shared experience, some knowledge, some idea of what is going on, and when they brainstorm – well you should fear their collective awareness.

They will find every hole, they will spot every plot, they will dig deeper than you can imagine, they will invent stuff you love but never thought of yourself.

How on earth are writers ever going to deliver something interesting at the end of a mystery TV series these days?  Is there no hope?

Is Fringe doomed, lost in the shadow of the thousands of fans predicting every episode and digging beneath every mystery?  Did Lost lose it’s way when the fans described every possible explanation for the island there could be?  Do we need to use the approach from Push where our hero works out what to do and then has his mind wiped so no one, not even he, can guess where things will lead?

Will we end up with soap opera style TV series in which there is no long running mystery because how can any mystery survive the glare?  Will we have to live on a diet of 1 hour mysteries with no long running story line (and how long will they survive when we’re all wired in and talking to our 10,000 friends while the episode is on air).

I wonder how mystery TV writers with ambitions of long plot arcs will survive in the glare of the Internet and how fans will come to lament the loss of the mystery and the inevitable let down when the predictions from 10,000 fans come true in the final episodes.