Fringe Season 3

I’m a little disappointed.

This season starts out with Olivia caught in the parallel universe. And then every other epidote takes place in every other universe. I guess it’s a nice touch, and it allows the writers to talk about their characters for an hour at a time, but I really don’t give a damn about the other characters. I don’t care about Fauxlivia or Walternate or AltAstrid. They could all live, die, or grow mushrooms in their cracks and it wouldn’t affect my interest in the series at all. Yet we have entire episodes based around them.  Also, with a concept like this – one where the writers heavily rely on a plot-heavy overarching theme where the obvious ending will be the activation and/or destruction of some sort of monstrous machine – it’s difficult to get into the “monster-of-the-week” episodes.

I think the best part of the season is that the writers, no matter what, stick to their guns.  They want the alternate universe heavily involved because they’ve been hinting at it for 50 episodes; they want that bowling alley guy involved because they’ve been hinting that he’s a bigger part of the equation; they want William Bell to be involved because they’ve been hinting that he may not be dead… but sticking to your guns can backfire.  The alternate universe is full of people the audience doesn’t care about (although,  I must say, Torv is surprisingly convincing as another version of Olivia); the bowling alley guy is a huge part of the plot, but he is only used as “surprise!  he works in a bowling alley but he’s a huge part of the plot!”; the guy who plays Bell, Leonard Nemoy, has retired so they have to have three excruciating episodes of him possessing Olivia like Linda Blair in The Exorcist.

Because when you’re on LSD, the whole world is GTA.

I know I sound like I hated it, but season 3 is not a bad season.  It’s just that, after last season’s terrific string of episodes, I was hoping for something a little better than “Peter has a baby with Fauxlivia!” or “Look!  A mostly animated episode!” or “Peter travels to the future!  Betcha didn’t see that coming!”

Other than the last few seconds of the season – where Peter ceases to exist for some reason – this feels like a Final Season.  Pretty much everything is tied up.  The only things we really don’t know are if the two universes are going to be friendly or not (although, as I said, in the grand scheme of the show, I don’t care that much about the alternate universe or who they don’t trust), and why The Observers are observing (although in the episode “The Plateau”, I think we see how they began).

Here’s to hoping season four is at least on-par with season 3.


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