The TV Column

'Lost' fans found every minute of the finale worth treasuring -- even the ads

TELL US, JACK: What do you see at the end? Since it's "Lost," chances are it's just another commercial.
TELL US, JACK: What do you see at the end? Since it's "Lost," chances are it's just another commercial. (Mario Perez/abc Via Associated Press)
By Lisa de Moraes
Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"Lost" fans have ruined series finales for the rest of us for the foreseeable future.

We're not sure if the "Lost" finale holds the record for most ads during a series finale, but according to a tally conducted by Entertainment Weekly, the 2 1/2 -hour very last episode of "Lost" was jammed with about 45 minutes' worth of ad breaks -- around 100 ads in all.

So nearly one-third of the time you were watching that "Lost" finale on May 23, you were actually watching an ad or a promo.

Where I come from, this is called "excessive."

But instead of grousing about it, "Lost" fans appear to have loved the ads.

A lot.

And said so.

Emphatically.

According to Nielsen, about 90 percent of the national ads that aired during that wrap-up episode achieved higher "brand recall," on average, than ads that aired in other prime-time programming on broadcast and major cable networks in the week prior to the "Lost" swan song.

That higher brand recall wasn't just by a little bit. The in-"Lost" ads on average generated 61 percent higher brand recall. You think that's bad? They also got 92 percent higher "message recall."

It gets worse.

Ads that aired in the very last "Lost" scored 66 percent higher "likability" than ads that aired the prior week.


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