Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fringe 2 and 3: The Anthology Tightrope

What I most like about Fringe so far is the sheer diversity of its classic science fiction themes - slowing and accelerating aging last week, mental telepathy this week. Both had a good, plausibly scientific backdrop, putting Fringe clearly in the province of science fiction rather than fantasy or horror, a plus in my book. Fringe is thus coming out of the gate as modern day Science Fiction Theater with a touch of Twilight Zone, with even a little Ray Bradbury Illustrated Man dropped in.

But Fringe is also trying to do something more - go beyond unconnected anthologies, and underpin its multiplex science fiction with a story line that ties it all together. Dr. Walter Bishop - played by the always compelling John Noble - is at the center of this. He's a scientist whose diverse work decades ago is suddenly bearing harrowing but fascinating fruit right now.

There's also his partner - who may be at the core of the evil doing, and our government agents and officials, who presumably are trying to combat this, unless they're also trying to use it for their own ends.

It's a promising story. But it needs more clarification and development. Walking the tight rope between fine standalone episodes and a cool, unfolding, underlying plot is never easy - especially when the rope is woven of the complex, glittering strands of science fiction.

See also Fringe Begins ... Fringe 4: The Eternal Bald Observer






The Plot to Save Socrates


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