Why ‘Lost’ Producers’ New Series ‘From’ Won’t Be as Frustrating as ‘Lost’

Producers Jack Bender and Jeff Pinkner promise that, unlike “Lost,” “From” is thoroughly mapped out

From, Harold Perrineau
From (Epix)

“Lost” producers Jack Bender and Jeff Pinkner are back with the twisty new mystery series “From,” which debuts Feb. 20 on Epix. Instead of stranding people on an enigmatic island, the series, which reunited them with “Lost” star Harold Perrineau, is set in a nightmarish Midwestern town, where no one can ever leave and terrifying creatures prowl after sunset.

During an Epix panel at the Television Critics Association this week, Bender and Pinkner discussed how the series — which is created and executive produced by John Griffin — won’t make the same mistakes “Lost” did, where some mysteries ended in disappointing reveals or were never answered at all.

“I think that having done ‘Lost’ and then taking the lessons of ‘Lost,’ the storytelling lessons and sort of ran them through a filter fringe and tried to apply them here, I think we’re approaching every season like its own chapter with its own questions and its own answers,” Pinkner said.

He also promised that each season, which will be only 10 episodes compared to 22 on “Lost,” will be more “contained.”

“It’s a very contained arc. The limitations of 10 episodes force you to make harder choices. We, John and Jack and I, have been very cognizant of making sure that the characters are asking the questions that we know that the audience is asking,” Pinkner said, no doubt referring to the fact that the WTF moment in the “Lost” pilot where a scouting party runs into a polar bear — on a tropical island — wasn’t mentioned to the rest of the castaways.

“The show is sort of reinforcing and playing along with the audience’s experience of the show… we’re aware of what the audience is asking and looking for, and so being mindful of the questions and knowing that we have answers, and using all of it really just to focus back on what are the characters going through, really that’s the reason we’re so enamored with our cast is we’re taking kind of a ‘Twilight Zone’-y trope and using it to explore humanity,” he said.

Bender added, “Six years of ‘Lost’ was an amazing wave and a great learning experience… the great thing about episodic television is you can follow those roads where they take you. But our creator, John is are working to have every season be a chapter… It is worked out, and creativity may send it up and down, but the journey is clear. The map is out there. And I’m not so sure it always was with ‘Lost,’ as brilliant as ‘Lost’ was.”

In addition to Perrineau, the cast also includes Catalina Sandino Moreno, Eion Bailey, Hannah Cheramy, Simon Webster, Ricky He, Chloe Van Landschoot, Shaun Majumder, Corteon Moore, Pegah Ghafoori, David Alpay, Elizabeth Saunders, Elizabeth Moy and Avery Konrad.

“From” is created and executive produced by John Griffin (“Crater”), directed and executive produced by Jack Bender (“Lost,” “Game of Thrones”) and showrun and executive produced by Jeff Pinkner (“Fringe,” “Alias,” ” Lost”).