Saturday, April 28, 2012

Fringe Season 3

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!

Fringe Season 3 - 2 out of 5

When J.J. Abrams pitched this show, I can only imagine he said something like, "Okay, remember The X-Files?  Well, I want to do a show that nearly completely rips it off.  I want an actress who--and this is important--can't act to save her life play the female role with a former Tiger Beat coverboy backing her up.  The show will only have one compelling character and after a painfully formulaic first season, it will attempt to have its own mythology but, in the end, it will just further dive into the sci-fi cliche pool."

Granted it probably didn't go that way but I like to image it did.

Okay, I get it.  Abrams created and produces the show but do we really need to
include his love affair with the lens flare?

Fringe has a HUGE following on the internet (yet, despite this following, the show can't seem to get the ratings and that led to its cancellation after it airs its fifth season).  For some reason, this show speaks to a huge number of people and, to be honest, I don't see the draw.  To me, the show is very VERY mediocre and it only has one--just one aspect--that keeps me watching.  If you are unaware, the show is about an organization within the FBI that investigates fringe science--there's your ripoff from The X-Files.  A brilliant and eccentric genius named Walter Bishop got involved in some bad Frankenstein-type stuff in his younger, more naive days and it all came back to bite him in the ass later.  His estranged son and a young FBI agent named Olivia Dunham help him stop the monsters and accidents from his old research days in the first season that was unbearably predictable.

Great Scott!  Christopher Lloyd was on an episode this season!

As season 2 started, they moved away from the "there's something bothering an area that turns out to be a experiment gone wrong by Walter" to another sci-fi cliche...the parallel universe.  This parallel universe has become the show as it turns out that Walter's son, Peter, is actually the Peter from the alternate universe and Walter's act of opening a door to the next realm has had violent and catastrophic effects on that world and it's out for revenge.  Luckily for us, a reoccurring role from Leonard Nimoy helped the show keep moving forward--sadly, his characters dies.   As season 2 came to an end, the alternate (or more evil--and you know she's evil because her hair color is different!) Olivia Dunham changed places with the good Dunham in an attempt to bring the universe down from the inside with the help of a doomsday device.  Yes, even as I say (or type) this out loud, the stupidity of this show becomes painfully apparent.

This is pretty much the only face Dunham makes the entire season.

She's smiling in this scene but her character was
actually getting bad news.
Not much really occurs in Season 3 until the very end.  In fact, an overall story arc doesn't really come into play until about Disc 5 in the 6 disc set.  Most episodes are about either Dunham trying to get settled into whatever universe they are in and THAT is NOT a good thing.  The show's biggest detractor comes in the form of actress Anna Torv, who plays Dunham.  Torv is incapable of anything resembling passable acting.  She can't even master showing emotion as her face and the character's emotional state never seem to balance.  When she should be sad, her face is smiling and when she's suppose to be confused, she looks like she's going to vomit.  Her inability to convene emotions become so bad that it seems the directors of episodes even notice and actually instruct other actors to announce the emotion state her character is going through.  I'm not kidding, other characters will actually say out loud if she's angry, happy or sad. Having this bad acting and having a season that is nearly ENTIRELY centered around the character who is played by this bad actress makes for some bad TV because it pushes the only reason I watch the show to the back burner.

See?  Same face.  It seems she just gave up on trying to show emotions like
Kristen Stewart in Twilight.

What's the one reason I watch the show?  Walter Bishop.

The ONLY reason.

Without Walter, Fringe would be nothing.  Literally.
Walter is the only character on the show that is complex and interesting to watch.  His history is interesting and his emotional state is a rollercoaster as he can make you laugh and cry--sometimes at the same time.  To make things even better, he's played perfectly by John Noble.  With Noble's performance and the intrigue that is Walter Bishop, it's no wonder he's the only reason I watch the show as the series' premise isn't that interesting and most of the characters are flat (Peter Bishop) or played by a actress who's abilities are painful to watch, to say the least (Olivia Dunham).

Kevin Corrigan plays an interesting character this season...but we don't see
much of him.  Instead, they cram more of Torv's bad acting down our throats.

Without Walter saving the day, Season 3 is nearly unwatchable and only becomes more so after they realize they can resurrect Leonard Nimoy's spirit.  Unfortunately, that character's spirit inhabits Dunham and, if the season wasn't bad enough already with its Dunham emphasis, we have to endure several episodes of Torv performing the WORST Nimoy impression ever heard.  Honestly, after hearing her attempt to do this voice, it makes me wonder if it wouldn't have been better just to have Spock overdub his voice and if the decision to cancel the show actual came after having to endure that torture.

Nice try, Fringe but including the amazing Brad Dourif in the season finale isn't
going to save this mediocre season.

When the season starts to come to an end, the overall story arc starts to come into place as all out war is on the brink between the two realities and it seems that only Peter can unite the two.  The season ends on a nice cliffhanger that can make the rapid fans salivate as they can't wait for Season 4 to start but after enduring all the painful hours of Torv's awful acting and self-contained episodes that did little to move the show's mythology forward, I'm okay with waiting for Season 4 to come to DVD.

1 comment:

  1. "including the amazing Brad Dourif in the season finale isn't
    going to save this mediocre season." hahahahah you are so mean XD


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