[Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof walk into the offices of ABC television studios]
Carlton Cuse: Brother, we have an idea for a new TV show.
ABC TV Executive: Alright then… hit me.
CC: We’ve got an idea for a show where all the characters are trapped on an island.
Damon Lindelof: But! They might not actually be on an island!
CC: That’s right. Because this island is really really weird – there’s a monster on it, and polar bears live in the jungle there!
Exec: Polar bears only live in the arctic, guys.
DL: That’s exactly what’s so freaky about it! And get this about the monster who lives on the island – it’s a bunch of smoke!
CC: I know you’re excited, but there’s more! See, all these people who survived the plane crash might have actually died, and the show is entirely set in their minds! So we have flashbacks to their life before the island…
DL: Which could be their pasts, but could be from the future!
CC: Yeah, and there’s a hatch in the floor of the island where a Scottish Guy lives and he can predict the future!
DL: He keeps predicting how different characters are going to die all the time.
Exec: How are you going to explain all this?
DL: We don’t have to! Once the show gets to the third season we’ll start reading message boards online, see who comes up with the best explanation…
CC: And use that! Brilliant, eh? Did we mention how other people live on the island? We’re going to call them ‘the others’.
DL: And one of the characters gets cancer but then – get this – is cured! And we’re going to bring in some rad new characters throughout the series like Nikki and Paolo, who…
CC: They’re totally going to be the new Ross and Rachel.
DL: And there will be people who don’t age for no reason! It’s going to be brilliant. What do you think?
Exec: Guys, I’ll be honest. There’s nothing that could make me do this show.
[The door bursts open]
JJ Abrams: Oh really?
Exec: JJ Abrams!
JJ Abrams: Damn straight, bitch! And I’m here to say: make this show… or I won’t be responsible for the consequences.
[And so, LOST is born]