Sunday, April 26, 2009

Fringe Season Finale Teases

At the Paley Festival last week, a few Fringe season finale secrets were revealed by the cast and producers to Sci Fi Wire.
The end of April 21's episode, "Bad Dreams," showed a video of young Olivia in a burnt-out room after one of William Bell and Walter Bishop's Cortexiphan experiments. Is she just a firestarter?

"I think it's more than that," Torv said. "I think for Olivia it's more than that, and I say that only because there's an episode coming up where we meet another subject, and I think it's more than that. I think what they got given or what they got taught is much bigger than just starting fire." runner and executive producer Jeff Pinkner offered more hints about what Olivia's secret power really is. "We saw the consequence," Pinkner said. "We saw that she started a fire at the end of the last episode, but I think it's a mistake to assume that that's her power. I think the truth is, it's probably a consequence of her ability."

Torv also confirmed her scene with Nimoy, adding that it's calm yet threatening. "That's what's kind of cool about working on Fringe, is everything seems kind of calm and lovely, but there's always something going on underneath," Torv said. "Where she meets him is the cooler question, but I'm not saying any more."

"There's a piece of information that gets revealed about Peter at the end that tells you why I think that [Peter was not part of the Cortexiphan experiments]," Jackson said in a separate interview. "It's the last thing that you learn. It's not something that Peter does. It's something that happens around him, and he's not even aware of, but the audience becomes aware of, and it sort of radically changes how you think about this guy."

Pinkner said. "'Is there only one Peter?' I think it's really exciting. We knew the secret of Peter before the season started, and it's been hinted at or sort of laid in the architecture of the show since the pilot. We start to acknowledge to the audience what that secret is. He, Peter himself, will not learn the secret or one of the secrets at the end of this season, but we will."

"I do a series of scenes with Josh Jackson at the end of that, which are really very beautiful," Noble said in a separate interview. "Walter has a manic attack, actually, which is quite scary. It's just the two of us. It's something I thought was really strong work. That's my favorite in the finale. It's pretty powerful."

"Well, you're going to find out what [Nina Sharp's] connection is to the legend of legends, William Bell," Orci said in a separate interview. "Is she his protector? Is she his accomplice? Is she innocent?"

I have to admit, most of those secrets were questions that didn't even occur to me to ask (like is Peter really Peter). Should be an interesting season finale and if Abrams keeps to tradition, he will cause more questions and confusion then clear up.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

JJ Abrams Edits Wired Magazine

As part of the return of Star Trek, Wired Magazine turned over editing duties for a month to J.J. Abrams. First is the description, after that is Star Trek and other links of interest from the issue.
Every two years, WIRED creates an issue with the help of a special guest editor. This year the job goes to Hollywood visionary J.J. Abrams, creator of Alias, co-creator of LOST and Fringe, and director of the new Star Trek film, which hits theaters May 8. At first glance, Abrams’ credits may not seem related to core WIRED story topics like tech, business and science. But, says editor in chief Chris Anderson, “What is science but a never-ending detective story? The guest editor’s job is to take our readers to a place they’ve never been before. We learned that mystery is at the center of J.J.’s world, and it’s and a major part of the WIRED world, too.”

More than a year in the making, the May WIRED features a one-issue redesign, mind-boggling puzzles on almost every page and hidden features “that are not apparent at first or second glance," says Abrams. WIRED challenges readers to test their skills with pages of clues, spoilers, games, card tricks and layer upon layer of mystery. Abrams, who says he is a “huge fan of WIRED,” saw his guest editor duties as an opportunity to give mystery a new meaning. “Mystery demands that you stop and consider -- or, at the very least, slow down and discover. It’s a challenge to get there yourself, on its terms, not yours.”

From the world’s leading origami artist to the top puzzle masters, WIRED recruited top talents in a variety of fields for this issue. Contributors include renowned comic book artist Paul Pope, who illustrates an exclusive comic strip featuring a lost chapter of the Star Trek saga. Star Trek concept designer Neville Page gives readers a first look at a new monster, Big Red, a lobster-hued snow-planet scourge that attacks Capt. James T. Kirk.
The details on the issue and online extras can be found here or on newsstands now.

On to the links:
Spock Bio - The full six pages that summarizes the life and times of Spock.
Star Trek's Big Red - 7 pictures of concept art for "Big Red", the large creature that attacks Kirk on the ice planet Delta Vega. It was created by Neville Page who also designed the creature used in Cloverfield.
JJ Abrams on the Magic of Mystery - Abrams discusses love of mystery and putting the issue together. It also helps you understand why it’s just hard to get information about his projects (which makes blogging about them difficult).

Friday, April 10, 2009

Fringe: Final Five Episodes Summary

The final five episodes of the season are planned, probably already shot, and apparently full of answers that likely lead to more questions about the Pattern as the descriptions below from SF Universe seem to indicate.

Unleashed (Air Date: 4/14/08)
As animal rights activists ransack a laboratory, they get more than they bargained for when one of the caged “animals” unleashes a ferocious appetite. Leaving grotesquely mutilated dead bodies in its wake, the scientific engineered beast – with the body of a lion, claws of an eagle, fangs of a viper, skin of a rhinoceros and tail of a serpent – attacks Charlie. With Charlie’s life on the line, Walter must come face-to-face with both his past and the beast.

Bad Dreams (Air Date: 4/21/08)
Episode Written and Directed by Academy Award-winner Akiva Goldsman (“A Beautiful Mind”)

As a suicide incident occurs at New York’s iconic Grand Central station, Agent Dunham simultaneously witnesses the event while asleep and dreaming in Boston. Rattled by the extraordinary and coincidental circumstances, Olivia, Peter and Walter investigate further, but keep coming up empty-handed. As these violent occurrences continue and worsen, Olivia is sent into an unthinkable direction and shocking details emerge about the ZFT manuscript, the highly experimental drug Cortexiphan and Olivia’s childhood.

Midnight (Air Date: 4/28/08)
Fringe Division is on the case when severely mutilated bodies drained of spinal cord fluid begin to pile up. After their investigation leads them to a scientist (guest star Jefferson Mays) with possible ties to the Z.F.T. bioterrorist cell, they are shocked to discover the identity and motive of the killer. When the kills occur with increasing frequency, Olivia (Anna Torv), Peter (Joshua Jackson) and Walter (John Noble) go to desperate lengths to stop them.

The Road Not Taken (Air Date: 5/5/08)
First her bad dreams became reality, and now Olivia is “dreaming” while awake, seeing elaborate bleak visions of things not really there. While investigating the disturbing case of a woman who apparently spontaneously combusted, Olivia throws caution to the wind and mines her unexplained visions for clues. Meanwhile, Walter comes clean about his prior knowledge of the Z.F.T. manifesto, and Peter’s secret project is revealed and yields surprising help in unraveling the mystery.

There's More Than One of Everything (Air Date: 5/12/08)
The sudden and unexpected attack on someone with close ties to Fringe Division, the return of bioterrorist David Robert Jones (guest star Jared Harris) and the inexplicable disappearance of Walter set the stage for a non-stop, nail-biting season finale of FRINGE. Questions will be answered, observations made, loyalties tested and truths and identities revealed.

This is the season finale were Leonard Nimoy is expected to appear in at least one scene (probably at the end).

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Fringe Casts Nimoy (Updated)

Ausiello Files is reporting that J.J. Abrams has tapped legendary Star Trek actor and director Leonard Nimoy to play William Bell. Bell is Walter Bishop's former lab partner that created Massive Dynamic. That corporation is considered central to "The Pattern" problems that the main characters investigate and often have origins to Bishop and Bell experiments.
It was a delight to work with Mr. Nimoy on Star Trek," J.J. tells me. "The idea that he will play the mysterious, much-referenced William Bell is a thrill. I know I sound like a goofy fan boy, but I can't help it: Leonard is an icon of the genre and such a wonderful actor. To have him come on board Fringe is a mind-blowing honor."

The character is slated to debut in next month's season finale and then return in the fall for an extended arc.
Update: E Online has posted an interview with Fringe co-creator Roberto Orci about the casting of Nimoy and plans for the character of William Bell.
is William Bell the answer to some of the questions we've been asking about the Bishops and Olivia?
Several answers will come outside of William Bell, and then William Bell will be the beginning of the answers to even bigger questions.

How do you see the relationship between Walter Bishop (John Noble) and William Bell (Leonard Nimoy)?
We always imagine that they were two of the smartest guys in their classes, and they went through the Ivy League together. At that point in college, you're discovering yourself, but these guys, the intelligent geniuses they are, they might come to conclusions about what's important in this world. So we always imagine that they were very much like each other, very much friends, and very much a team—brothers in a way, and that life took them in different directions, either complementary or not directions, and we're going to find out.

Do Walter and William take those different approaches to the Pattern?
That's absolutely right. They have not only different approaches to the Pattern, but different interpretations of what the Pattern is. The Pattern is slightly in the eye of the beholder, you're going to find out. And sometimes what you think is real can become real. In a way, these two are the top minds in the world attempting to figure out the Pattern and how to react to it, based on their world view.

When will we first see William Bell?
We're going to want to build the anticipation to meeting him as much as we can. So close to the finish line.
EW's Ausiello Files provided a little bit more detail how when the character will show up this season and next.
Question: Leonard Nimoy as William Bell on Fringe? In a word, awesome. How long will he be around for? --Jeremy
Ausiello: He'll appear in one scene in the May 12 finale and then return next season for three more episodes. I hear the character's arc was significantly cut back to accommodate Nimoy, who was only interested in doing a handful of episodes. The moral of this story: A little Leonard Nimoy is better than no Leonard Nimoy.

Fringe Glyph Code Cracked

Julian Sanchez of Ars Technica, Erica Sadun, and UC Irvine computer science professor David Eppstein have cracked the code to all the glyphs that appear just before each commercial break during an episode.

In most cases it is a single word that ties into the theme of the episode so sadly it doesn't seem to provide the hints towards "The Pattern" as hoped. Read the links above for the details on how they did it or just use the picture (from Fringe Television) to determine the word for future episodes.

The words to date:
3: AEGER [? -- AETHER would make more sense for the episode]
5: SURGG [should be SURGE?]