30 November 2008

A Long Overdue TV Review

While my father was visiting over the holiday, I introduced him (and I think got him hooked) to my one new show this season, Fringe. Fringe is the brainchild of the guys who wrote Transformers and J.J. Abrams, so I fully expect the show to become a barely watchable shadow of itself about halfway through season 2 like Alias and Lost. I loved the characters on Alias enough to soldier through until the end, whereas I just gave up on Lost. To give a shorthand description of Fringe, it is like Sydney Bristow joined The X-Files. And dyed her hair blonde. There is the requisite angst over a departed boyfriend, the elusive conspiracies, the shadowy organizations, and the crazy, inexplicable, possibly paranormal, things happening. Good times.

Now, I loved The X-Files and Alias dearly and I was enjoying Fringe. Then I made my dad watch the first 7 episodes on hulu.com and an obsession was born. When you watch the episodes all in a row, there is an impressive continuity that you don't necessarily notice when you watch them once a week. Not continuity of major plots or issues, but minor continuity details that are quite awesome and make watching fun. You can play games like "Spot the Observer," a sort of Where's Waldo for every episode. And then there are the trippy clue-like images that appear before every commercial break. 

There is the leaf with the isosceles triangle embossed on it:

The six-fingered hand:

The apple half in which the seeds look like fetuses:

The toad with the symbols for the Greek letter Phi, which in math apparently symbolizes the Golden Ratio:

The daisy that appears to have a dragonfly wing for one petal:

And the seahorse that has a Fibonacci spiralon its skin:

I don't know what any of it means, but it at least piques my curiosity and provides some visual stimulus.

Then there are the characters. I haven't totally warmed up to the female FBI agent Olivia Dunham, but I really enjoy the mad scientist, Walter Bishop, and his relationship with his estranged son Peter. They have the best lines in the show and provide the necessary comic relief. And Peter Bishop is played by Joshua Jackson, who I thought was very cute when he was in the first Mighty Ducks movie 16 years ago. All these years later he is very attractive and will probably be added to the Fantasy Boyfriend League pantheon shortly. Finally there are all sorts of shady and shadowy figures and organizations that appeal to the buried conspiracy theorist in me.

So, that is my current TV obsession, which I am trying to focus on since ABC cancelled Pushing Daisies and whom I subsequently declared dead to me (ABC, not the Pushing Daisies people. I adore the Pushing Daisies people). I am still mourning that loss. But at least I have an obsession to distract me, right?


Anonymous said...

Jared and I love Fringe also. We got Katie to watch some when she was home over Thanksgiving.
~ Susan

esperanza said...

Whenever I see glimpses of the show while I am at the gym I think of you and how it seems like something you would like as well as The Eleventh Hour, do you watch that one?

Saxon said...

Fringe does look interesting. Mind you no channel seems to be interested in showing it here in the UK. Hopefully ITV won't get it and show it at 11.30pm at night like they do to other shows like supernatural!

Katie said...

I am echoing my mom's comment. Started to fall for the Fringe spell over Thanksgiving. Great show.

cherbear said...

Spoiler alert!
I just want to know what sort of experimenting Walter did to Peter when he was little. There's some secret in their past that I'm intrigued about. Not to crazy about Dunham either.

Scully said...

I know CherBear, me too! I wish they would stop distracting themselves with Peter's money troubles and get back to the mystery that is Peter's illness/Walter's experiments. And I think the Peter/Walter/Astrid show would be better than the Peter/Walter/Olivia show.