is fringe season 4 and 5 worth watching

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by tmosler, Apr 9, 2016.

  1. tmosler

    tmosler Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    So I have been binge watching the show fringe and just finished season 3 which I have to say was amazing in everyway. Furthermore I heard season 4 and possible 5 are weaker seasons is there any truth to this and if so are they still worth watching since I love the characters? Lastly I did watch the first episode of season 4 and I have to admit it was a little disappointing since they completely changed the show.
     
  2. Ovation

    Ovation Admiral Admiral

    I enjoyed it all the way through, but by the last couple of seasons, I was more invested in the characters than the plot (which happens to me more and more as I get older, for some reason).
     
  3. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I enjoyed the show all the way through too. I don't remember having any major issues with the last two season.
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Oh, yes, seasons 4 and 5 are definitely worthwhile. They're not "weaker" at all; they're just different and experimental, and some people are put off by things that aren't what they expect. They're actually quite imaginative and daring, and they're essential to bringing the show together as a cohesive overall saga. The fascinating thing about Fringe is how it reinvents itself so many times yet still feels like a unified story. Seasons 4 and 5 even retroactively improve the lackluster and unfocused first season, because they revisit dropped threads from season 1 and integrate them more fully into the narrative, so that it feels like they were setups for important things rather than just random bits of weirdness.

    Granted, season 4 can be a little off-putting at first, because it does initially do away with so much that was familiar and appealing, and it's almost like starting over from scratch. But that's just part of the master plan that plays out, and it's worth pushing through to see where it goes. Fringe is a series that rewards patience. Certainly if you've managed to slog through season 1, you've already endured the worst.
     
  5. USS Firefly

    USS Firefly Commodore Commodore

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    My wife and I enjoyed the show until the end
     
  6. Mr Light

    Mr Light Admiral Admiral

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    It definitely peaked with Season 3. I don't remember the series terribly well, but 3 was the only year I was truly excited about the show.
     
  7. Richard Baker

    Richard Baker Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I wish they had stopped with Season Four.
    To be honest I prefer Season One the most- just a bunch of weird stuff happening and the team trying to figure out how to deal with it. When the show got into massive story arcs and started trying to make each episode (but not all) work to tie it all together and advance the story it felt strained. I feel the same way about the X-Files series as well.

    My biggest problem is that the fifth season turned the whole series concept into something else. Now they are freedom fighters struggling against oppression. The Observers were wonderfully enigmatic beings which added so much- when they showed up you knew it was some sort of significant moment even if you had no idea why. Like the Borg in Voyager, they got over explained and reduced to being a generic villain. The show could have used almost anybody in that role as protagonist and still told the same stories.

    I love Fringe- it is one of the few series I have a complete DVD set of, but I do wish they had gone a different direction with as they wrapped things up.
     
  8. Scotchy

    Scotchy Commander Red Shirt

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    YES. It keeps getting better as it goes along. Worth it all the way to the finale. Fringe was a great show, I have the entire series.
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I feel the reverse. Season 1 was random and directionless. It was just a bunch of arbitrary weird and nasty stuff happening with only the most tenuous explanation for why any of it was happening, revealed very late in the season. It felt like nothing more than a mediocre imitation of The X-Files. And it was clear that they were making some things up as they went along, particularly
    how they retconned John Scott from a villain into into an undercover good guy by conveniently ignoring the bit in the pilot where he cold-bloodedly murdered an injured suspect by smothering him in his bed.
    It was the larger arc that made the story worthwhile, that made sense of what was happening instead of just having it be gratuitous weirdness. The show really came alive at the end of season 2, when we met the alternate-world versions of the main cast -- who were frankly more fun than the versions on "our" side. The parallel-world angle gave the show its own core identity and mythology and made it something much more fresh than just an X-Files clone. And the fact that practically everything that happened in the series was the aftereffect of Walter Bishop's original sin gave it more dramatic power, because the story of Walter trying to make amends for his mistakes, and the brilliant and poignant performance of John Noble in such a complex role, was a compelling emotional core.

    When I watched Fringe in first run, I had trouble remembering its recurring characters and elements when they were brought back again. It didn't really make that much of an impact on an episode-by-episode basis. But as a binge-watched series, it was more cohesive and compelling to me. It held together surprisingly well as a unified arc. The larger whole was more interesting than the individual parts.



    But if they hadn't tried something new, they would've been cancelled and the show would've just fizzled out without resolution. Yes, it was a radical change, and I had some issues with it, but I admire the producers for being willing to reinvent their show so radically, and I'm impressed by how cohesive they managed to make it feel nonetheless. I'm glad we got a decisive finale to the series, and I'm glad we got a season that told the Observers' story, the one remaining outstanding thread after the other stuff had been resolved. And I always appreciate it when a show is willing to go all-out with the science fiction rather than trying to sugarcoat it with "normality" for the typical viewer. That's why I found the Other Side more engaging -- because it was a whole created world, a whole distinctive culture and history, which is a much more interesting imaginative exercise than just setting something in the everyday world and sticking in a monster or a weird invention in isolation. Telling a story set decades in the future, and involving the invasion of a society from centuries further in the future, was just nonstop sci-fi creativity, and I'm glad the show got to go there, to keep amping up its imagination beyond its rather drab beginnings.

    Immediately before I binge-rewatched Fringe, I had binge-rewatched Alias from the same producers. That was another show that reinvented itself from season to season, but it did so clumsily and inconsistently, and it was clear that there was no real plan, just several flailing attempts to find a new identity and direction. But Fringe's periodic reinventions felt more organic. Somehow the periodic changes added to each other rather than working against each other, and it felt like a logical progression of the saga as it expanded onto progressively larger stages.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2016
  10. Starbreaker

    Starbreaker Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Season 3 was the best. They seemed to try and radically reinvent the show every year, which I was never really excited about. It's definitely entertaining all the way to the end.
     
  11. Snaploud

    Snaploud Admiral Admiral

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    I think it is definitely worth watching the last couple seasons.
     
  12. Spider

    Spider Dirty Old Man Premium Member

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    To me, season's 2, 3, and 4 were the best and ranked right up there some of the best scifi on TV. Season 1 was merely OK, and season 5 is a disaster. You could easily just skip all of season five and just watch the ending episodes where they wrap a lot of stuff up.
     
  13. Locutus of Bored

    Locutus of Bored Hello There! Moderator

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    You should definitely watch it all the way through. Some seasons are weaker than others, with Season 2 & 3 and the alternate universe being the high point, but it's well worth sticking it out for the full ride, as it was always well-acted, thought-provoking, and enjoyable. It's like five shows all wrapped up in one, and it's cool to see the characters you love deal with the differing universes and scenarios and alternate versions of themselves.
     
  14. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

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    Season 5 is fantastic, and totally makes you need to re-evaluate the entire series, including what was thought to be throwaway background lines from S1 and early S2, and makes them absolutely integral to the plot, and leaves you wondering just how much did Bell actually know? (which is actually one of two remaining questions i have for the series, the other one being more detail on Mosley (the Rogue) and the connections to Peter's grandfather (all the way back in episode 4.) Season 4 is a wonderful complement to S1 and the ways the characters are explored in little changes, butterfly effect style. The entire series stands as one of the greatest ever, in my opinion.
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Oh, I think they absolutely were throwaway at the time of seasons 1 and 2 -- otherwise we wouldn't have had to wait so long for them to be revisited. But that's what's so cool about S4-5 -- the way they retroactively add more meaning to the first couple of seasons and make them feel more purposeful than they probably were at the time.
     
  16. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

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    I think they were seeds planted early - the General in early S2 that was trying to blow up the Observers and were convinced they were the enemy... before that, the ZFT agent freaking out on Olivia for ruining the plans, asking, do you even know who we're fighting against?? .. which makes the entire alt-universe a red herring... then there was the (Star Trek joke) from the Grayson (haha) guy that described the time traveling plot of 2009's Trek movie - but which also described the Observer plan *in detail*.... S2 finale's comments from Bell about seeing history repeat itself enough times.... his "one step ahead" anti observer tech.... and all the pieces falling into place during S5.... The ZFT manifesto itself.... talking about another universe invading, with future tech, and needing cortexiphan soldiers to fight them - again, that is precisely what the Observer War is - and precisely how they are defeated. That is the entire point of David Robert Jones activating Olivia and training her.... the entire point of having the proper child born (hence the S4 rewrite to give us Etta instead of Henry)..... if that was all honestly random stuff that just fits perfectly after the fact, then I guess I'm even more impressed then I thought, because it seems like it was all there for a reason - Bell, doing terrible experiments (the Pattern) in the present, perfecting the weaponry needed for Olivia to take on the Observers in the future......right down to the end of S4 being part of his plan to put her in the proper position.... IMO. He seemed way too calm and pleased and prepared with the way that S4 ended.

    In any case, such a genius show...
     
  17. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Season 4 is rather stupid, not 'bad'' just really really dumb, like why did the they do what they did? It was useless.

    Season 5 I own on DVD and have never opened, it just is bad. It makes no sense at all and they never bother to explain the Observers and their random actions, at all! It made no sense and not worth watching.
     
  18. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

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    Why did they do what they did?

    The Observe's removed Peter from the timeline the moment the bridge formed and the timeline was restored to pre-interference levels and the Science Team's superiors decided that the time was right for Invasion. The events of S1 happened differently without Peter's presence, hence all the events had to unfold differently in terms of activating Olivia by ZFT/Bell/Jones to get her into the proper position to defeat the Observers in S5. The Observers were never random actions, but the science team was being used by their superiors under false pretense to scan history for the proper time to invade. September went rogue, and did not remove Peter upon his return as a paradox, and set the table with the Observer Child, for the Invasion to be rolled back.

    Season 5 is the best stretch of episodes since Early Season 3.
     
  19. Gary7

    Gary7 Vice Admiral Admiral

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  20. SAndrews10

    SAndrews10 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Very simple answer: Yes!