ABC has agreed to let the producers of Lost set an expiration date for the series: three years in the future, the network announced May 7.Starting in the 2007-'08 season, Lost will air in uninterrupted arcs of 16 episodes each, culminating in the show's finale sometime during the 2009-'10 season.
So Lost will have "six seasons", but seasons 4-6 will only have 2 traditional seasons worth of episodes.
This seems like a win-win really. This gives the Lost people the ability to spin their plot out at their desired pace, without worries about getting cut off at the knees. The short season is a little disappointing, but I'd rather have it than the season 3 "mini-series" thing repeat.
I'll note that this pretty much completes the destruction of the traditional "season". HBO has long used 13 episode seasons (and the UK uses 6 epsodes!). Sci-Fi has been experimenting with the weird 2-part Battlestar seasons - which are closer to two HBO seasons than anything else. But Lost is a major network show, and now it's practically ignoring seasons, one of the sweeps periods (November), and the whole structure of US broadcast TV that has been in place for however many diddly-ump years now. A season is now "a large dramatic unit of shows". I like it a lot. I dislike the stupid little hiatus that has cropped up over the last few years, in large part because everyone has the same hiatus. If your "season" is only 24 episodes, fine. Just show them and be done with it. Don't skip 4 weeks in the middle and then be forced to recap everything.
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