Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Fringe Season Finale = Letdown

I looked forward to the Fringe finale last Tuesday with great anticipation. I had discovered the show halfway through the season and, thanks to the magic of Hulu, was able to catch up on what has become my second-favorite show. It is like the X-Files (of which I was a voracious fanboy) except funnier and lighter. I also feel like it attains moments of real terror (i.e. the opening scene of the episode with the Microwave Lady- I almost soiled myself).
Leading up to the finale, things were really ramping up. Olivia was tumbling down the rabbit hole of scientific experimentation and weirdness that was her childhood, toggling between alternate universes. Walter- by far my favorite TV character in a long time- was led away by the Observer. By the end of the second to last episode, I was rubbing my hands together in fanboy bliss, anticipating a killer finale.
But what I got was just alright. Bad guys sneaking around opening portals to alternate universes and accidentally catching people and vehicles in the crossfire? That's okay, I guess. Bad guy trying to get to the other side to kill William Bell? Doesn't really mean anything to us yet. And then the reveal in the last five minutes of Leonard Nimoy as William Bell and them being in the Twin Towers? Cool, but it didn't really make up for the lack of intensity or significance in the rest of the episode.
It was, in a word, a letdown. It seemed more designed to set the stage for next season. Maybe Lost set the bar a little too high (I watched the two finales back to back), but I felt ripped off. I didn't want the whole thing to be about the Spock reveal at the end. Having just seen and enjoyed Nimoy as Spock in Star Trek just days earlier, I found it really hard not to think of him as Spock, except that he smiled. Note to J.J.: you might want to space out the Nimoy cameos.
At any rate, I am looking forward to a second season. Let's hope they give us a better season premiere than a season finale.

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