Eerie similarities between “The End” by The Doors and LOST

The promo for LOST 6×16 What They Died For is one of ABC’s best promos ever, with a soundtrack snipped from the great rock classic song The End by The Doors, and arresting visuals, in blue and white, which make the LOST-ies look as if they are all underwater and/or trapped inside glass.

When I first saw the promo, I thought the choice of song was clever, an obvious good fit. “This is the end …” The Doors sing, and indeed, this is the end, alas, of LOST, and the end of the ride, for us, the fans.

I didn’t think more about it until commenter Doug left a mind-blowing comment on my Oedipus LOST post:

With The Doors’ “The End” being used at the end of tonights episode, this pretty much confirms this theory. “The End” lyrically is based on Oedipus and contains all of the images in the song. Read the lyrics.. It’s all there. The blue bus, the snake, the goldmine, etc…

Wow. Thanks Doug!

It is all there. But what are we to make of that? How can the eerie coincidences be explained?

Is it because we might expect certain cultural icons of the late 60s/early 70s, the era of both The Doors and the Dharma Initiative, to show up often — icons like a blue VW bus?

Is it that the song and the show both use symbols, such as snakes, and mythological stories, such as that of Oedipus, which often appear in many of our stories?

Or could it be that the many similarities between The End and LOST are because the LOST writers actually patterned their show after the song? (That last one seems unlikely, but file it in the “you never know — anything might be possible” folder).

I’m inclined to think that the similarities arose because both Jim Morrison, writer of The End, and the writers of LOST were fascinated by mythology.

Here’s what Jim Morrison said in 1969:

Every time I hear that song, it means something else to me. It started out as a simple good-bye song probably just to a girl, but I see how it could be a goodbye to a kind of childhood. I really don’t know. I think it’s sufficiently complex and universal in its imagery that it could be almost anything you want it to be.

Here are the lyrics to The End — and some screencaps from LOST:

This is the end
Beautiful friend

Sawyer losing his grip on Juliet in "The Incident"

This is the end
My only friend, the end

Of our elaborate plans, the end
Of everything that stands, the end
No safety or surprise, the end
I’ll never look into your eyes…again

Can you picture what will be
So limitless and free
Desperately in need of some stranger’s hand
In a desperate land

Lost in a Roman …

Latin-speakers in "Across the Sea"

… wilderness of pain

The 815 pilot in the tree -- the smoke monster's first victim

And all the children are insane
All the children are insane
Waiting for the summer rain, yeah

There’s danger on the edge of town
Ride the King’s highway, baby
Weird scenes inside the gold mine
Ride the highway west, baby

Ride the snake, ride the snake


To the lake, the ancient lake, baby

The pool in the temple

The snake is long, seven miles
Ride the snake…he’s old, and his skin is cold

His skin is cold

The west is the best
The west is the best
Get here, and we’ll do the rest

Kate arriving at the LAX airport (on the West Coast!)

The blue bus is callin’ us
The blue bus is callin’ us
Driver, where you taken’ us

Hurley driving blue vw van LOST

The blue bus

(The “blue bus” in the song may have been a reference to the draft for the Vietnam war.)

The killer awoke before dawn, he put his boots on
He took a face from the ancient gallery
And he walked on down the hall
He went into the room where his sister lived, and…then he
Paid a visit to his brother, and then he
He walked on down the hall, and
And he came to a door…and he looked inside
Father, yes son, I want to kill you

John Locke and his father Anthony Cooper in LOST 3x19 The Brig

Locke and his father, Anthony Cooper, in 3x19 "The Brig"

Mother…I want to…f**k you

C’mon baby, take a chance with us
C’mon baby, take a chance with us
C’mon baby, take a chance with us
And meet me at the back of the blue bus
Doin’ a blue rock
On a blue bus
Doin’ a blue rock
C’mon, yeah

Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill, kill

This is the end
Beautiful friend
This is the end
My only friend, the end

It hurts to set you free
But you’ll never follow me
The end of laughter and soft lies
The end of nights we tried to die

Jack on bridge railing, about to jump off

This is the end

Click on pictures to see their source.

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One response to “Eerie similarities between “The End” by The Doors and LOST

  1. Mister Mojo Risin

    “It hurts to set you free
    But you’ll never follow me
    The end of laughter and soft lies
    The end of nights we tried to die”

    Those lines seem to fit quite well into the church sequence near the end as the characters leave purgatory, or when Jack closes his eyes after seeing the plane fly away.

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