The TV show Lost managed to nail three things right in the product category: the right product, the right place, and the right time.
Originally I didn’t catch Lost when it aired on TV, I marathoned all the seasons when they were released on netflix. But after watching the show I could see why my friends and coworkers were hooked. I didn’t put the connection together till now, of how the show could be applied to everyday life.
It was one of the first shows to wholeheartedly make the jump to HD.
When it first aired to when it ended, it made the jump to HD and was better for it. The cinematographers really took advantage of not only the higher resolutions but also the lush landscapes that were present in the show because they were shooting on location. This had to do with the timing and taking advantage of the technology that was present at the time.
It was available on DVD after the season had aired.
While DVD is not an HD viewing experience per se, the quality was a lot better than VHS tapes. And while there were other shows that did this as well, they nailed this one as well.
It was available for online streaming.
Hulu was starting to come out with content at the time, but ABC had its own streaming solution from its site. Whether or not you agree with either of these, people could still watch it on the internet at their leisure, not encumbered by when it aired. They could also see higher quality video then if they had set their VCRs to record it. In addition DVRs were starting to come into prominence and it had the same benefit as online streaming when it came to picture quality.
So I keep belaboring quality when it comes to all these things, what made this particular show so special, there were other HD shows at the time, some of them even filmed on location. It was the fact that it was filmed on location with an almost cinema quality, the writing was able to capture the audience in a way that kept them coming back week after week and the actors were able to execute the story in a way that it was believable that they were trapped on this faraway island.
In total they had the right product, the right team to execute it, and they benefitted from producing the show at the right time that all of these auxiliary technologies came together and facilitated getting the product produced at a high quality into the hands of the viewers. They also had the insight to know which tech to pursue and how to use it effectively.