Nine days from now will be the one year anniversary of LOST ending. I wrote about how that void will never be filled, and how there will never be another show as great as LOST, for OH SO MANY reasons, but today, just temporarily, a little bit of Amber in the form of the Fringe season 3 finale filled that void.
I tweeted about it the instant it finished, I rewatched that ending, had about ten tabs open, started looking at the Fringe subreddit, read an out-there, theorising post by Doc Jensen, and well, it felt like LOST all over again!
Fringe came into its own this season. Renny had been telling me how good it is every chance he got, and I never followed it episode by episode, ultimately getting through the season in pretty much this last week, but wow, you can see the J.J. Abrams influences of LOST and Alias absolutely pouring into it. The case-of-the-week formula still remained in some episodes, but once the mythology kicked in, like any good J.J. show, it went to another level.
The parallel universe we got a glimpse of at the end of season 2 became “Over There”, and the story-telling format completely changed. I love becoming invested in a show, and the Fringe writers, showrunners et al managed to get me invested in two worlds, and the characters of two worlds. I started caring about Olivia and Bolivia Dunham, Joshua Jackson stopped being Pacey, and I didn’t think I could love Walter Bishop any more, but I found a way to.
The differing title sequences; I love, love, love them! From the retro 80s sequence to the Over There red, and the different world cloud of sciences they explore, it’s one of the little things I’ve come to enjoy most about Fringe, and I absolutely geeked out with the blended sequence at the start of episode 8. Can’t wait to see how season 4 starts!
The finale itself. Well, what a mindfrak that was. From the ending of the penultimate episode, 15 years or so in the future, to the, well, PETER BISHOP NOT EXISTING, my 5 hour karaoke hungover mind was crying in pain. Who doesn’t love a good time travel paradox?! I’ve been in euphoria over it, and haven’t had the time to digest it properly, but, I did read this brilliant interview over on HitFix with Fringe showrunners Jeff Pinkner and J.H. Wyman, that got me better understanding the headspace these guys operate in, and what they feel the future of the show will be like, and again, they’re no Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, but I liked what they had to say.
There are two kinds of television shows: There’s a show that’s about a condition, about a hospital or about a police precinct or about a team of lawyers. And then there are shows about characters or an unfolding story. Ours is the latter and it needs to unfold. It can’t stay still. We couldn’t tell the same kinds of stories we were telling in Season Three forever, just like we couldn’t tell the same kind of stories we were telling in Season Two forever, without it starting to stagnate. So the show is moving forward. It’s the same character. It’s ultimately, hopefully, the same variety of themes that we enjoy exploring so much. And hopefully it will just continue to grow and deepen and to get richer.
I’ll definitely give the finale another viewing to take it all in, and maybe update this post with more thoughts on the finale itself, but boy, it’s good to be so excited about a TV show again. I really, really hope they can take season 4 to greater heights; consider me a more than interested Observer.
Ah, and quite possibly my favourite pre-title sequence of a Fringe episode, ever, which apparently refuses to be embedded… >.<