Four of the six season premieres of "Lost" were marked on my calendars with a couple of stars and a whole lot of exclamation points.
The very first one, when the show debuted back in 2004, was an exception because I was certainly not interested in any show that started with a violent plane crash.
But my trusted television advisers notified me halfway through Season 1 that I was making a big mistake, so I took a deep breath, watched the plane crash scene with the aid of a pillow I could hide behind, and got myself caught up.
I was so glad I did.
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"Lost" — ABC's sometimes maddening but always brilliant stranded-on-a-desert-island show — has been one of the best series in which I've ever invested my time.
It's suspenseful, well written, well acted and populated with a cast of characters who manage to look good even when makeup-free and island-grungy.
It's a show so big-time and groundbreaking that the President's office recently vowed not to let the State of the Union speech interfere with the season premiere. As it should be.
Which brings me to the second "Lost" season premiere I'm not all that excited about — the final one, a two-hour episode that will air starting at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
The only reason I'm not excited about it, though, is that this particular premiere means that "Lost" is almost over — for good. Only 18 episodes and four months remain between now and the end of Jack, Sawyer, Kate, Hurley, John Locke, the button, the hatch, the smoke monster and all that Hawaiian flora and fauna.
Then what am I supposed to watch?
When we last saw the castaways last fall, they'd survived a whole lot of time traveling and were wrestling with a buried nuclear warhead.
Ben had killed Jacob, who may or may not be Jack's father, and Locke was dead... again.
Or was he?
Producers are being excessively secretive about what the final season will bring, but those expecting answers to all the seemingly significant mysteries raised during the past five seasons will likely be disappointed.
"Lost's" creators have apparently always known how they'd end the show, and they're already making sure fans know that they might not like it any more than they liked the end of "The Sopranos."
They're going to focus more on wrapping up the characters' story lines, they say, and less on answering all those bothersome questions.
And to that end, they're bringing back several former characters, including Charlie (Dominic Monaghan), Boone (Ian Somerhalder), Michael (Harold Perrineau), Charlotte (Rebecca Mader) and Libby (Cynthia Watros).
My guess — we'll never know why Kate saw that horse, why that button needed pushing or why we ever had to meet Mr. Eko in the first place.
My hope is that we'll at least discover the significance of those annoying numbers.
This year, "Lost" will air on Tuesdays, meaning that until "American Idol" is one hour and not two (which is a loooong time from now) you'll have to make a tough choice.
Or at least learn how to punch some numbers into your DVR.