Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Fringe Comic Relaunch Explores Origins

Wildstorm plans to "relaunch" the Fringe comic book series by tying it more carefully into the shows mythology by exploring the origin story of young Walter Bishop.

From Comic Book Resources:
In “Fringe” #1, readers were introduced to a young Walter Bishop and his fellow graduate student, William Bell, as they share their first “fringe-like experience” together. Fans of the show know William Bell as the future chairman and CEO of Massive Dynamic – the multi-billion dollar research and development conglomerate that finds itself smack dab in the middle of whatever Agent Dunham and her team are investigating each week.

Johnson revealed the next chapter in Bishop and Bell’s early history is explored in “Fringe” #2, on sale on this week. “Things get even weirder for them,” laughed Johnson. “By this time, [Bishop and Bell] are sharing a lab and starting to experiment with things that the university would probably not approve of, if it knew about them.”

The budding relationship serves as the plot thread stringing the six-issue miniseries together. A series of backup features, telling done-in-one mysteries, are also included. “Each issue in the series is divided into two parts: the first half, or A-story, will continue the story of Bell and Bishop, while the second half, the B-story, will be a self-contained short story with unconnected characters that plays on a different Fringe-y concept, with subtle ties to the show itself,” Johnson explained. “The A-stories with Bell and Bishop form one over-arching story that culminates in both ‘Fringe’ #6 and the pilot for the show, so make sure you watch it again. And the B-stories are each self-contained short stories. We are all huge fans over here of ‘The Twilight Zone’ and ‘The Outer Limits,’ the classics, so our B-stories are homages to sci-fi parables like the ones in those shows.”

Johnson said Walter is an interesting character to write because in the “Fringe” comic stories, he’s a “different guy” than the one we see on the show. “He’s young, he’s just starting his career, and most importantly he’s not crazy,” offered Johnson. “At least not in the conventional way, but we put hints in there that all will not end up well in his world.

“As for Bell, we’re playing with the idea that he will end up the richest man in the world one day, in charge of the biggest corporation in the world, Massive Dynamic, but he starts as an idealistic young scientist.”

Wildstorm’s “Fringe” comic book is very much set within the continuity of the greater “Fringe” mythos. But, Johnson added, “If anything contradicts the show, the show wins because it’s on TV, and comics are on paper.”

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Fringe Second Season Likely

Good news for fans and those that work on Fringe, it appears that the show is going to get a second season. In a press Q&A with Fox entertainment president Kevin Reilly said, while hedges his bet just a bit "I already know 'Fringe' is a keeper, the show's been a bear creatively because it's been very ambitious. They've really found the storytelling model now ... what you're going to see in the second half in the year, if you follow the serialized story you will not be disappointed, yet the stories really do reset themselves each week. I would not expect it to take off after 'Idol,' but I do think it will tick up another level. If I have a show that we love, but we don't think it can be protected on the fall schedule, we might not put any on the fall schedule."

Realistically though, you don't put a show on after juggernaut American Idol unless your confident that it has the potential to grab an audience and keep them watching.