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Television

"Lost" and the Emergence of Hypertext Storytelling 170

Hugh Pickens writes "The TV series 'Lost' involves a large cast of characters marooned on a tropical island after a plane crash, with episodes that thread lengthy flashbacks of characters' backstories with immediate plots of day-to-day survival and interpersonal relationships, and a larger 'mythos' involving the strange and apparently supernatural (or science-fictional) happenings on the island. Independent scholar Amelia Beamer writes that the series works as an example of a recent cultural creation: that of the hypertext narrative. 'In Lost, the connections between characters form the essential hypertext content, which is emphasized by the structure of flashbacks that give the viewer privileged information about characters,' writes Beamer. 'Paramount are the connections unfolding between characters, ranging from mundane, apparently coincidental meetings in the airport, to more unlikely and in-depth meetings, reaching back through their entire lives and the lives of their families.' Beamer writes that the series also pays tribute to video games, another relatively recent interactive means of storytelling."

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