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General Fringe Discussion (SPOILERS)

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From the man that brought us Lost, Alias and the new Star Trek film comes the television series FOX is throwing all its promotional might behind: Fringe. See former Dawson's Creek star Joshua Jackson try to throw off the shackles of teen angst! See that guy who played a cop on The Black Donnellys play some other character! See the guy who plays creepy Matthew Abaddon on Lost play a creepy guy on a new show (or maybe a non-creepy guy)! And see Aussie Anna Torv -- just see her!

The premiere runs from 8:00PM to 9:35PM Eastern tonight. A repeat on Sunday will run two hours from 8:00PM to 10:00PM Eastern, padded with a look at the second episode, the upcoming 24 telefilm, and the remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still.

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Did anyone other than me watch the premiere? I think it has potential, but it was not the amazing experience FOX (or at least the promotional department) seemed to think it would be. I liked it enough to watch the next episode but it is not must see TV by any means.

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I taped it and just watched it today. I agree that it wasn't the most exciting or thrilling premiere I've ever seen. I'll keep checking it out to see how it develops.

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Wasn't there a show on Fox called X-Files that had this premise? I saw the first one it was okay, but.. We have seen this show before as either the X-Files or even Night Stalker.

Its okay but JJ isn't exactly inventing the wheel here, and this scares me. I hope his Trek is better.

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I did, obviously, catch the Sunday broadcast, and the funny thing is after I wrote the review I kept wondering if even my blunt-edged criticism was a little harsh. The next few episodes are supposed to be more character-oriented so I could very well get what I found was lacking. It's just, that's not typical for me in a J.J. Abrams pilot. Usually they leap out at you, the characters, I mean, Sydney with her red hair, Jack being Jack, right from the start.

...Of course, here's my awful confession. The review is based only on the second half of the pilot. I still haven't seen the whole thing. That's sort of why I intend to keep giving it a try. If I end up liking it, I have that much more incentive to get the DVD...

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Personally, I was let down by tonight's episode. The outrageous pseudo/fringe science aside, it was far too obvious that the crazy father's ex-partner-turned-college-professor was going to be involved with the murderer. And what was with that deathbed confession from the murderer, saying his "father" should have let him die? Were we supposed to feel pity for him? He was the one killing all the women, not his father (from what we know) and at any time he could have just not killed anyone or run away.

Not a good follow-up to the pilot, I must say.

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Insofar that if he didn't, he'd die, because of his condition and what his father told him, I'd grant the guy a tiny bit of slack.

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My point is, if he felt so strongly that his father should have let him die long ago, he could have committed suicide by not killing pretty young women for their pituitary glands. The death scene seemed obviously intended to make Agent Dunham feel sorry for the murderer and to shift blame on the professor (who, we were told, was paid to create the super-fast-grower by whoever is behind The Pattern, supposedly).

The scene just did not work for me.

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I don't know, I guess I'd have to rewatch it, but I still have sympathy. The guy probably didn't have much contact with the outside world that wasn't supervised by his father. Maybe the simple act of actually rapid-aging made him think about it for the first time, or the botched attempt, or being caught finally. Could have been any number of things. But for the purposes of the episode, the episode itself would have to have been longer to accomodate a ton of reasoning for why you should feel sorry for a one-off character. As I write in my review, it's the idea that the series is going to be exploring the impact of this fringe science stuff that intrigues me. I think I wrote something like that in the review, anyway...

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FOX picked up Fringe for the rest of the season earlier this month, so it looks like we will have a full 22 episodes to learn about the Pattern. New episode on Tuesday. I am actually a little bit excited.

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I heard about Fox giving it more eps, a real surprise because this is a Fox series I can actually like and follow for once and not worry about it being cancelled after three airings.

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Not on Fox. They have a habit of ditching shows that don't perform an expected number, even if the performed numbers are still good. And they have a grudge against scifi/paranormal shows for some reason. With a few notable exceptions, nothing in the genre lasts long on that network.

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But Fringe has been getting better numbers. I'm well aware of FOX's penchant with genre shows, but in this case, it's a moot point.

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Production on Fringe will be moving to Canada should the series be renewed for a second season. James Hibberd over at The Live Feed has this to say:

Here?s a statement from Warner Bros. about the studio?s decision to move the production of Fox's "Fringe" from New York to Vancouver, Canada, plus some clarifying comments in italics.

Statement: "In this challenging and uncertain economic environment"--

You mean the one where ?Fringe? is getting huge ratings?

"--we have made the very difficult decision to move the production of ?Fringe? from New York to Canada in the event the series is renewed for a second season."

Read: ?Fringe? is being renewed for a second season.

"We did not come to this conclusion easily--"

It was tough. We get it.

"--but economic and practical imperatives dictated that this decision be made in a timely manner.?

Read: ?Fringe? is definitely being renewed for a second season.

?We are deeply indebted to the talented New York production crew--"

Who are now hitting up their friends who work on "Gossip Girl" for a job.

"--that helped bring the first season of ?Fringe? to life, and we thank them for their invaluable contributions--"

Not literally invaluable, of course.

"-- to the show?s success.?

[End statement]

I would be very shocked if FOX did not renew Fringe but until the official word comes, we can only speculate.

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Is anyone else really itching for a new episode of Fringe? New episodes are still four weeks away (April 7th). I think "Ability" really hooked me on the series which is frustrating because the show then immediately went on hiatus.

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I'm always itchin', but they've got me so used to waiting weeks between batches of episodes that I'm no longer all that surprised to wait.

Also, word seems to be good that we're going to get a second season.

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According to the futon critic there are six episodes left; originally 22 episodes were ordered but that was cut to 21 in February (which I was not aware of) and fifteen have aired thus far. I am a little bit worried that after such a lengthy hiatus fans are not going to come back to the show. And now that I am most definitely a fan I really want Fringe to return for a second season. At the moment, I think its chances are good. If the ratings drop significantly when it returns, that could be a problem.

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Although the eight minute American Idol overrun really puffed up the early numbers, final numbers have last night's episode ("Inner Child") drew 9.883 million viewers and a 4.0/10 in the A18-49 demographic. The previous episode, broadcast l-o-n-g ago on February 10th ("The Ability) averaged 9.828 million viewers and a 4.0/10 A18-49 demographic. Given the hiatus that is certainly good news. I was actually expecting a moderate drop.

FOX may not have renewed the show yet but the odds are in its favor.

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This almost deserves its own thread. Leonard Nimoy will be appearing on Fringe in one episode this season and a few next season.

From EntertainmentWeekly (mild spoilers):

Scoop: 'Fringe' beaming up Spock!

Look at J.J. Abrams using his fancy sci-fi connections.

After collaborating on his upcoming Star Trek reboot, Abrams has signed Leonard Nimoy to join the cast of his Fox baby, Fringe.

The 78-year-old Trek icon will play William Bell, Walter Bishop's former lab partner-turned-millionaire founder of Massive Dynamic.

"It was a delight to work with Mr. Nimoy on Star Trek," J.J. tells me. "The idea that he will play the mysterious, much-referenced William Bell is a thrill. I know I sound like a goofy fan boy, but I can't help it: Leonard is an icon of the genre and such a wonderful actor. To have him come on board Fringe is a mind-blowing honor."

The character is slated to debut in next month's season finale and then return in the fall for an extended arc.

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