|Lost and Lord of the Flies
Lord of the Flies Vs. Lost
Summary: An analysis of the similarities and differences between the hit television drama "Lost" and the classic novel Lord of the Flies by William Golding. A clear relationship exists between the two.
Lost, a television series, is about forty-eight survivors, mostly adults, struggling to stay alive after a plane crash that has left them alone on a deserted island. This television series is much likely based on The Lord of the Flies, a well-written book by William Golding, in which about thirty young boys are stranded on a deserted island after a plane crash. Although the television show is most likely based on the novel, there are many differences. For example, after the initial crash in each story line, the children and the adults had different reactions. In the book, The Lord of the Flies, most of the children were excited after the initial plane crash. They were looking forward to have a vacation without any adults. On the other hand, in Lost, the adults were panicking after the crash. Most of them were crying and worrying about their friends or family members and whether or not they would be rescued. Even though there are many differences between the story lines, there are scarce similarities. In The Lord of the Flies, and Lost there are frightening mysteries. In the book written by William Golding, the mystery is what the boys call a "beastie." Later, as the book progresses, we come to realize that the only fear was within the boys themselves. However, in the television series Lost, the frightening mystery is supposedly a polar bear. Since our class has not seen the complete series, it is hard to identify the polar bear as the cause of the fear of the adults.
Referring to the clues from the film, I believe a structured society will appear. This is my prediction because adults are much more mature than children. They have more survival skills and would normally take a situation like this seriously. After viewing the first two episodes of Lost, I have noticed that there have been fights and disagreements. However, this doesn't lead me to believe that the adults will become savage. I believe certain people, such as Jack, will take a leadership position and have the survivors remain as civilized people. Even though there will be a civilized society, problems may occur. For example, when Claire has her baby, there will not be proper food or drinks for the infant.
In addition, the civilized individuals will get into many disagreements, mainly over who has authority over the island. In my opinion, Sawyer will become the most savage of the forty-eight survivors. He is hot-tempered, violent, and abusive. In episode two, Sawyer ignites a fight with Sayid because he believes Sayid is a terrorist, and could be responsible for the crash of their plane.
In The Lord of the Flies, three of the main characters include Ralph, Jack, and Piggy. Ralph was the elected leader of the boys. He did his best to maintain a civilized society. However, as Jack introduced signs of savagery, Ralph began to lose power and authority. Jack was one of the most violent and savage boys. He desired power and became obsessed with hunting. Piggy, the last of the main characters, was the most intellectual of the boys. He is the most civilized boy and peaceful. He is often Ralph's side-kick. The characters from Lost that contain various elements of Ralph, Jack, and Piggy are Jack, Sawyer, and Hurley. Ralph best relates to Jack from Lost. Jack from The Lord of the Flies best relates to Sawyer and Piggy best relates to Hurley. Jack from Lost is like Ralph because after the crash, he emerges as a leader. He tries to give orders and to decrease the panic level. Sawyer is best like Jack from The Lord of the Flies because he is very violent. Just like Jack, Sawyer creates problems especially on the hike in the second episode. Finally, Hurley from Lost is best like Piggy because he is peaceful, and warm. For example, when Sayid and Sawyer engaged in a fight, Hurley tried to step in and settle the situation in peace. As you see, there is a clear relationship between the television series Lost, and the book The Lord of the Flies.
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Lost AND Lord of the Flies
Literary Influences on the Popular Drama, Including Coral Island
July 26, 2008 Karen Murdarasi
Heroes vying for power, mysterious threats, the prospect of being trapped forever on a tropical island - this description could apply equally to Lost or Lord of the Flies
Any work of fiction which features a group of people plane-wrecked on an island naturally invites comparisons with William Golding's 1954 masterpiece. The similarities do not mean that the Touchstone Television production Lost is based on the book Lord of the Flies, but the comparison is interesting.
Leaders on the Island
In Lord of the Flies around thirty boys aged about 5 to 11 are plane-wrecked on an island. The natural leaders are Ralph and Jack, two of the oldest. Their styles of of leadership are different. Ralph is elected leader, tries to look after all the boys including the 'littleuns' and is advised by the wise but physically weak Piggy. Jack is already the leader of a choir and, feeling undermined by Ralph's position as leader, sets up a rival civilisation.
The corresponding characters in Lost are Dr Jack, who like Ralph is made (unofficial) leader by the others and tries to care even for the less dynamic characters, and Sawyer, whose natural charisma make him a potential leader. The men clearly see each other as rivals, as the boys do. John Locke also tries to play the role of leader at times but his wise counsel and tendency to be ignored place him in the Piggy role.
Dangers of the Island
Both Lost and Lord of the Flies feature a mysterious threat from the jungle. In Lord of the Flies this is known as the Beast, and placating it becomes a form of rudimentary religion. Simon, the mystic, discovers the secret that the Beast is not real, but he is killed by the other boys in a religious frenzy before he can share his knowledge. In Lost there are a number of mysterious beasts, including a polar bear. There is also the threat of something terrible happening if The Button is not pushed, a ritual which assumes a religious significance for Locke and Mr Eko.
The decent into savagery, however, is the real threat in Lord of the Flies. Golding's novel shows what can happen to the human soul when removed from civilising influences. Roger, the sadist, freed from the constraints of adults, becomes a brutal killer, and Jack is prepared to put up with Roger's sadism because the fear it inspires is useful to him. Lost has no character as wicked as Roger, but Dr Jack's decision to allow Sayyid to use torture demonstrates how his morals can be compromised, and echoes the relationship between Jack and Roger.
Similarities with Coral Island
The characters in Lost, unlike the boys in Lord of the Flies, do not descend to barbarism, but manage to form a fairly stable, functional community with reliable sources of food, water and shelter. In this respect, Lost more closely resembles Coral Island by Scottish author R.M. Ballantyne, published in 1858. Golding's book was a reply to this optimistic portrayal of three friends stranded on an island. The boys in Coral Island, who are in their teens and twenties, are the hero Ralph, his older and wiser friend Jack, and playful Peterkin.
The three boys hunt pigs and eat breadfruit, find clean water and shelter, build small boats and co-operate beautifully to form a pleasant life on the island. The danger to them comes from pirates rather than mysterious beasts, which corresponds to the Others in Lost, a constant background worry. In this respect, and in the belief that people removed from civilisation can behave in a civilised manner, Lost resembles Coral Island, but in its tensions and mysterious, dark presences, the TV series is closer to Golding's more brutal version of the ship/plane wreck story.
Read more at Suite101: Lost and Lord of the Flies: Literary Influences on the Popular Drama, Including Coral Island http://prime-time-dramas.suite101.com/article.cfm/the_literary_influences_in_lost#ixzz0mEuJaLUA
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TV's Lost is Indebted to William Golding's Lord of the Flies
ABC first broadcast Lost in the fall of 2004 and it wasn't long before the show became a big hit. The show's mix of intrigue, survival skills and critique on human nature seems to be what draws over ten million viewers each week.
The show Lost is so successful that after recently completing the third series, ABC has already announced a final three series - an unprecedented announcement in the land of TV series.
On the other hand, William Golding first published his novel Lord of the Flies in 1954. The novel's mix of intrigue, survival skills and critique on human nature seem to be what has made the book such a hit over the years. The book has been so successful that it is now required reading in many high school English classes.
The TV show Lost is by no means a copycat of William Golding's famous book, yet if looked at closely, there is no way the TV show could exist without the book. There are many ways in which Lost is indebted to Lord of the Flies. Some are obvious and others aren't.
To start with, the characters in both Lost and Lord of the Flies first arrived by plane crash and they landed on a deserted island. Also, although only a select few survived in both fictions, those who did were relatively unharmed.
In Lord of the Flies, only the children survived, with the oldest being about 12 years old. Not a single adult authority was left to help the kids in their survival or their attempt at being rescued. In Lost, there were many adults that survived (in contrast, few kids), but not a single adult authority. The reason this similarity is important is that in both fictions, the emergence of authority from people who didn't previously hold specific authority positions is a major force in moving along the plotline.
In Lord of the Flies, one of the main character's/leader's name is Jack, just as in Lost. If you consider it character-wise, Jack in Lost is more like Ralph in Lord of the Flies. Nonetheless, there's little doubt in my mind that the name Jack was chosen for Lost because of the prominence of the character Jack in Lord of the Flies.
Also, one of the first motivators in both fictions was securing food. In both Lost and Lord of the Flies, wild boar is the main (even only) source of meat and those who hunt it receive special recognition. Even many of the scenes, wherein the wild boar is charging the hunters and knocking them over, seem eerily familiar in both stories.
Early in the show Lost, as in the book Lord of the Flies, the fear of an anonymous monster or beast takes over the survivors. In both stories the fear of a beast makes most of the camp scared of the forest and they choose to stay on the beach to avoid it. In Lord of the Flies, the reader finds out that the beast is just a human, whereas the identity or source of the monster in Lost has not yet been revealed. With the strong similarities so far though, it would come as no surprise if Lost's monster was also of human origin.
Lord of the Flies first used the phrase, "the Others", in reference to an opposing tribe on the same island. The same phrase is used constantly throughout the TV series, Lost. The one major difference is that in William Golding's book, "the Others" were once a part of the original tribe, whereas the source of "the Others" in Lost is only occasionally hinted at.
It may be true though, that "the Others" in Lost are mainly survivors of other plane crashes who were once turned against their fellow survivors and made to join "the Others." This same thing explicitly happens at least once after the development of the two tribes in Lord of the Flies.
Also, something that is continually recurring in Lost is "the Others" killing people from the original surviving tribe. That's exactly how it happens in Lord of the Flies. One main difference is that the TV series Lost has gone on long enough that the killing happens back and forth, whereas in the book Lord of the Flies, the surviving tribe never attempted or succeeded in killing any of "the Others."
Finally, one of the central points of Lord of the Flies is a critique on human society and human nature. It can be equally argued that this is a central point of the TV show Lost. In both, the inherent evil nature of humanity is greatly considered. In Lost, several of the main characters have criminal backgrounds and are murderers. The rest of the cast just seem burdened by varying human weaknesses: pride, insecurity, and vanity.
Also, the ongoing competition between official leadership and subversive attempts at leadership is always a major plot point in episodes of Lost. This was the same driving force throughout Lord of the Flies plot.
As the TV show Lost continues, I have no doubt that more and more similarities between it and William Golding's classic novel will appear. A viewer may even be able to find out how the TV series will progress by reading Lord of the Flies. Only time will tell, but one thing is sure: Lost is deeply indebted to its predecessor, Lord of the Flies.
Lost and Lord of the Flies are both stories of human survival and critiques on human nature.
Both fictions share many of the same plot points and driving forces.
A fan of Lost may be able to learn more about how the series will go by reading Lord of the Flies.