I don’t know how but Jenny and I jumped back into Parks and Recreation again in season 5 and went all the way to the end. This time through the finale, “One Last Ride”, I saw how much it had in common with the Lost series finale.

*Spoilers ahead*

I’ve written about Lost and Parks and Recreation before, but didn’t see until now that both shows incorporate touch and time travel in their final seasons.

Lost started using “flashforwards” in season four, and then a whole separate timeline through “flashsideways” in the sixth and final season. The main characters don’t know each other in this separate timeline. Only when they incidentally touch each other do the memories of the original timeline and island life flood back, and they are reconciled.

Likewise, the final season of Parks and Rec jumps three years from the previous season, and then even farther in the series finale with glimpses of each character’s far future. These glimpses are also triggered by touch. Both gangs then end up congregated in their show’s final moments, having to say a bittersweet goodbye (albeit in different ways).

That’s probably where the similarities end between these otherwise very different shows. I’m grateful for both of them and their humane, emotionally true resolutions.

(Don’t @ me about the rest of the Lost finale)