May 31, 2010 12:00 PM

The Last of Lost

DRAMA

To start with the obvious: ABC’s Lost, which ends with a 2½-hour episode May 23, is the best, the richest fantasy series I’ve seen. But its wrap-up sixth season is a drag: This spidery metaphysical puzzle seems to be dwindling down to a hokey primordial myth of good and evil. The smoke monster-Lost’s most inspired invention-now drives the story. It wants to escape the island and to do so has assumed the form of John Locke (Terry O’Quinn). We’re meant to think of this Locke as Luciferian, a figure of corrupt, seductive power. All I see is a bald man who needs a bath. The real backbone of Lost has always been characters who were mousily non-epic-Ben (Michael Emerson) or Faraday (Jeremy Davies). They seemed to grasp, securely or not, the rules of this inscrutable game. My fear is that what seemed as masterful as chess is ending up checkers.

The Bachelorette

ABC, May 24, 9 p.m. ET/PT |

REALITY

When it comes to Bachelorettes, my favorite is still Jillian Harris, with her intriguingly insecure shrieking laugh. But Ali Fedotowsky is probably the cutest one yet: She looks like a hybrid of Kelly Ripa and Britney Spears. She dropped out of the last Bachelor, choosing job security over the chance to receive an engagement ring from Jake Pavelka. No longer a runaway prospective bride, she’s looking for romance and possibly dreaming of a stint on Dancing with the Stars.

How unfortunate that most of the suitors in the two-hour premiere seem like last-dredge princelings from a very minor kingdom. One guy, a Colorado outdoorsman named Kyle, says about the coveted first rose, “If I eat it, I can take it into my soul forever, and nobody else can have it.” It’s hard to say whether this is endearing, pathetic or tongue-in-cheek.

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