| Three years after the disappearance of 2% of the global population, a group of people from New York struggle to continue their lives, while they cope with the tragedy of the unexplained nature of the event.
“Nothing is answered. Everything is answered. Then it ends.” This show isn’t for people that want the plot and clues spelled out. This slow-placed study of human nature and spirit comes with a full package of extremely well written dialogues, top notch original scores laced with always the most adequate song selection from more mainstream music, and a great camera work. It will bring you to tears and laughter, it goes straight to your guts and leave you there on the threshold of the deepest feelings you can muster. And it gives you time to process this in the most beautiful manner.
The first season was the cause that nearly nobody watched the show. I think people completely misunderstood on what the show was trying to do and tell. As viewers we are used to be fed as babies. Most of the shows make sure we understand every bit of it. They treat the audience as if we were 3 years old. The Leftovers doesn’t do that. It has an ambiguous halo throughout the whole series in the most Lindelofesque way possible. It believes in a smart audience that isn’t expecting a very good “Why did they disappear?” but a very good “How do people deal with this?”. It’s not about the ones who left but about the ones who didn’t. And that’s why it’s so good.
The creators Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta made a bold and fantastic choice to switch in the second season, that by far was one of the best season’s in television history. Season 2 is one of the greatest displays of art ever to be put on screen. Beautiful, thought provoking, powerful and intensely epic. The Leftovers has completely its own style and tone through amazing production value and direction. Not to mention, the writing and acting are both phenomenal and mind blowing. The depth and range of the characters and the actors playing them are beyond remarkable. The way it is shot, edited and the way they incorporate both the show’s amazing score (beautifully haunting beyond measure) and outside songs into it make Season 2 into one totally cohesive and extremely powerful piece of art and it made this show so special beyond any comparison and moves you upon its own merit.
The Leftovers Season 3 revisits the sweeping successes of Season 2 with an added observance and a contemplation on parallel worlds. In transitioning to a more homegrown surrealist narrative, the show abandons considerable fractions of its human nature to tackle a more formidable theme; a theme which the show has been teasing at since the very beginning, that only in abandoning what makes us human and living can we discover the essence or truth of that function which drives us. Lindelof absolutely landed a perfect ending for the show and I was more than satisfied with it.
What ‘The Leftovers’ did as a series and as a concept for me was to learn to enjoy the journey. Even with all its mystery, the viewer was forced to do that – and that is why it was so beautiful to watch. It reminded me that doubt and fear and craziness is all just us trying to make sense of the past and to control the future. Almost all of our human drama comes from trying to understand things and not being patient with what the universe- the unknown- is doing with us. And that answers about where we are, are often making total sense when we don’t question them, and go along with them.
Even though it’s low ratings was the reason they ended the series after 3 seasons, I honestly think it was the healthiest thing to do for this show. When a series tries to stretch their longevity, usually we see a decreasing in their final seasons, so even when HBO didn’t wanted to go even further with the series, I’m glad we saw a great show at its highest peak, and not the other way around.