The tricky situation for any fan of a bubble show is how to process the sometimes negative news but also enjoy the story that’s unfolding. That’s the position Fringe fans have found themselves in for a while now. And this week, the news got slightly grimmer.
As EW reported, Fox’s entertainment president Kevin Reilly, asked at the Television Critics Association press tour of Fringe’s renewal chances, said the network was “not in the business of losing money.” (Read Joshua Jackson’s reaction here.) Luckily, Jeff Pinkner and Joel Wyman, the show’s executive producers, had no problem talking about the show with enthusiasm – however uncertain its future might be – with EW last week.
On the next new episode:
“We can easily say that Peter is driven to try to find a way home and, realizing that Walter is unwilling to help, he decides to go see if maybe another surrogate father of his is willing to help – Walternate. Of course, Peter has some very definite attitudes about Walternate and finds out that in this time line, things are not entirely as he had suspected them to be,” says Pinkner. And when told that EW’s Doc Jensen had “felt like an elaborate opening act for a main attraction still to come,” Pinkner laughed and agreed. “Doc Jensen was right; the first seven episode were an opening act and were laying the track for an overture to what’s going to happen for the rest of the season. We’ve seen now what Nina is doing to Olivia and [the] shapeshifters many times. In this next episode and going beyond, A) we’ll find out who’s behind the shapeshifters – it could be Walternate, and B) we’ll really start to delve into the challenges that our characters are going to face in both universes.”
Will we return to the old time line?
“For now, we’re going to stick to where we are. But it’s going to lead to other things,” Wyman assures.
On Lincoln Lee becoming part of the ‘family’:
“It will be more of the same,” says Pinkner about Lincoln Lee’s integration into the forefront of the story. “There are now two of them, and he’s now part of the team. He’s not being pushed out of the team by Peter’s presence. He continues to serve a very valuable role. Operating under all of this from the beginning is [the fact] that all of these characters, who don’t belong anywhere, have all formed this family within Fringe division. And Lincoln, on their side, stated that he’s never felt like he belonged, and he’s found people he’s connected with. The show has always been a complicated, complex family drama masquerading as a science-fiction procedural show. And Lincoln’s now part of the family.”
On the new facets of Nina Sharp:
The search for a worthy story line to “dimension-alize” Nina Sharp was a long and hard one, but Wyman says it was worth the wait. “It will get deeper. There are some great things to come,” he says. “It was her time, though. It was time to have something that was going to put some teeth back in her and some teeth back into massive dynamic and put her front and center and give her something to do.” Pinkner adds: “We now understand that Nina’s relationship in this time line is very different, and suddenly, not only is she her surrogate mother figure, but she’s dosing her and doing very nefarious things. So the surprises will keep coming. That’s the safest thing to say without us giving away too much.”
On separating Peter from Olivia (in the other time line):
Controversial as it was, Wyman says it was a risk they were willing to take. “Any love story we’re telling isn’t going to be an easy story. They should overcome things and obstacles – at least to me – to prove it’s an important love.