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I LOVED "Lost", but starting to think "Fringe" is better...


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  • I LOVED "Lost", but starting to think "Fringe" is better...

    Fringe was the first big sci-fi TV show produced by JJ Abrams after Lost, so the two were always at least modestly compared. I just loved Lost, it was epic and deeply emotionally satisfying. But one of it's biggest shortcomings was it's reliance on building tension by adding more mysteries to it's mythology and then refusing to explain them. I've read all about how Darlton (Damon and Carlton) said that it's a character-based show and that explaining all the mysteries wasn't the point of the show, but I totally disagree with that. Half the reason anyone watched it was because they wanted to find out what the heck was going on with that island. I think Darlton either totally misread their audience, or they simply build a big monster that got out of control and realized they didn't have time to answer everything, so they copped out with some excuse about "that wasn't the story we wanted to tell".

    This is where Fringe is different. There is plenty of very intriguing mythology, but it's not overwhelming. There are less characters and hence less subplots for one. They will bring up a lot of questions, but eventually, unlike Lost, they seem to have at least basic explanations. For example, the most recent episode I saw featured [SPOILER] the Observer finally having a significant conversation with one of the main characters. He revealed so much about the two universes, and this finally started to help connect so many of the incidents that have occurred throughout the four seasons [END]. I guess I can't actually say Fringe is better than Lost because of the above, but it certainly puts it at an advantage.

    Obviously, if they get to the series finale, we still don't know if we'll get the answers we want. I don't know even know if the show will survive that long, it's ratings have slowly plummeted. It would be a shame, it is an exciting show with great characters, John Noble really should have gotten an Emmy nom at least for season 1 or 2, maybe 3, and they manage to keep making the premise fresh.
    Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy.

  • #2
    Re: I LOVED "Lost", but starting to think "Fringe" is better...

    I come from a different perspective. I was interested in the story of Lost and rage quit after the first season realizing they were making it up as they went along and that fan speculation and wims would make the show a mess as there's no point trying to untangle a mystery that isn't actually solvable. (Phelous review made me glad I didn't hang around)

    Fringe hugely because as you point out they don't overbuild tension. From my understanding of the writing approach they very deliberately wanted to avoid being another X-Files having the show build up tension for a plot that would never really be resolved (I like how even the last movie didn't help).

    The characters are superb and the investigations are fun and it has great action. I'd also be sad if they can't keep Fringe running as it is a much superior show and there isn't actually too much good scifi I can think of off the top of my head these days.

    If Fringe does end I hope they get a chance to do a finale that ties everything up. Fox did keep Arrested Development running long enough to let the story get tied up after all.

    ---------- Post added 04-27-2012 at 02:13 AM ----------

    Official: 'Fringe' renewed for final season! | Inside TV |

    So it'll get a final season. Its kinda amazing how the show seems to get by on good will.
    "We all have sparks, imagination! it's how our minds... create creations!"


    • #3
      Re: I LOVED "Lost", but starting to think "Fringe" is better...

      posted by Jspider.
      So it'll get a final season. Its kinda amazing how the show seems to get by on good will.
      Yes, seriously. The ratings are so low and it's supposed to be a really expensive show, so we are definitely fortunate Fox is sticking by it. Shortened season, but better than the 4 episodes they gave Alias to finish that one.
      Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy.


      • #4
        Re: I LOVED "Lost", but starting to think "Fringe" is better...

        Alright ...this is coming from the guy with the LOST numbers tatooed on his right forearm prepare for a little bias. But here is the story with LOST, its inception and why I think it both failed and succeeded.

        Basically, yes, this whole "We had it all planned out from the very beginning thing" was malarchy. Damon Lindleloff was tasked with coming up with a show by ABC, the idea was 'mordern Gilligan's Island.' He only did this 'project' so he could work with J.J Abrams and get a writing gig on Alias. Lindleloff came up with the idea of the weird mysteries, the monster, and the island being something more ...because he knew the pilot would NEVER get picked up in a million years and then he would be free to write for Alias. But then something happened ...the pilot was good. Once the pilot got picked up, Lindleloff then blatantly tried to throw insane thing after insane thing in the first few episodes because he wanted the show to get cancelled so he could, ONCE AGAIN, write for Alias. This is where the 'Walt is special,' Claire's prophecy baby, and Polar Bears came from. But before he knew it, Abrams was gone and he, due to pulling a homer, had an instant hit on his hands with no several storylines that he had no idea how to wrap it up. Mid-way through season one, he put all the pieces together and figured that the end game would be that they would be in purgatory. Unfortunately, by season 2, the fanbase had figured that out already and Damon even admitted himself that (after teh series ended) he just wanted to quit. He didn't have an end game, so he just started throwing out all kinds of crap to keep the fanbase. And from there, the story changed from season to season.

        Basically, LOST was the ultimate fluke in television.

        Here is why it worked and stayed on for as long as it did: Everything that wasn't Darlton. The acting, the cinematography, the scripts, the work that went into characters that WE enjoy from both writers and actors, the score, the island they filmed on. They found the perfect combination of all of these elements. The ONLY thing that was handled horribly was the overall (BI-POLAR) overarching storyline that made no sense because it had a creator working against it, kicking and screaming, and then telling it was about the characters and NOT the story.

        And finally, the nail in the coffin was Darlton shoe horning purgatory in there in the form of the flash sideways. It wasn't even to fulfill Damon's need for a 'what a twist' moment was more so Damon could be like 'Hey, what is that over there' and hoping people would like at the flash sideways instead of asking "wait a minute" they didn't explain anything.

        What makes it worse is that Darlton had a panel at comic con last year and joked that they would provide us with a missing and then proceeded to play a video that openly mocked the LOST fans for following it so closely and making fan theories.

        So... on behalf of all LOST fans ... I apologize to Damon Lindleloff. I apologize that we expected more from you than what you wanted to give. I'm sorry we expected you to take the ball and run with it instead of complaining that you wanted to be working on Alias until theere was no Alias. I'm SO sorry.

        Okay, with the fan rant out of the way. Because, yes, I still LOVE LOST moreso for the cast and crew and that it has mythology ...but we were kind of sent on a wild goose chase for lack of pay off.

        But I hear good things about Fringe and hopefully the show runners have more of a feel for what their fanbase wants and likes than Darlton did.


        • #5
          Re: I LOVED "Lost", but starting to think "Fringe" is better...

          Agree. Fringe has gotten amazing yet much like LOST, Felicity, and Alias is getting whackier by the moment. I still love JJ's sensibilities, but let's be honest: Rumbaldi tried to unplug the drain on the island so he could destroy 2 universes in a vortex.

          Also Revolution is the best pilot this fall. It's soooooooo good.