Tuned In

Fringe Watch: Mmmm, Parasites!

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Barbara Nitke/FOX

Barbara Nitke/FOX

Spoilers for Fringe coming up after the jump: 

My first reaction to last night’s Fringe storyline: I could really go for some shellfish. Sorry, but you show a man’s heart being encircled by what appears to be a set of parasitic lobster tails, and that’s where my mind is gonna go. Give me some melted butter and a few lemon wedges, and I’m in heaven!

Beyond that: well, you’ve heard this criticism before, namely, that we’ve seen this story before. Something gross is growing inside someone. Walter is discombobulated. Peter is frustrated. We need to retrive information from the  the corpse. And Agent Dunham, I’m afraid there are things we still haven’t told you about The Pattern. 

So why do I keep watching? Because unlike with some shows that disappoint me, I believe Fringe has the elements it needs to be better. It has characters, quality of writing (even if the dialogue slips into cliche), a visual imagination, a mystery and a sense of fun. There’s nothing wrong with Fringe that can’t be cured by what’s right with Fringe.

But it needs to be less parsimonious with the Pattern story. I suspect that the weaknesses of the first months of Fringe have come from an excessive fear of getting too complicated and thus getting canceled. I’m holding out hope that now that the show is a (minor) success, it will have the confidence to take the chances that will make it appointment TV. 

Then again, it is already a minor success, so maybe they shouldn’t worry about pleasing me. I almost felt as if Broyles’ lecture at the end of the episode was directed at me: “You’re not easily satisfied. You want everything and you want it now. In your mind somehow a small victory is no victory. … Stop whining about what you can’t know, can’t control, can’t change. … Tomorrow we’ll do this all over again, and guess what? You’ll have a million new answers and a million and one new questions.”

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to put the lobster pot on the stovetop.