'Fringe':Exec producers Jeff Pinkner, J.H. Wyman answer fan questions about the finale--EXCLUSIVE ~ Fringe Television - Fan Site for the FOX TV Series Fringe

'Fringe':Exec producers Jeff Pinkner, J.H. Wyman answer fan questions about the finale--EXCLUSIVE

      Email Post       5/14/2011 02:53:00 PM      

May 13, 2011
04:45 PM ET

'Fringe': Exec producers Jeff Pinkner, J.H. Wyman answer fan questions about the finale -- EXCLUSIVE
by Jeff Jensen

One week after Fringe’s time-traveling, parallel world-bridging, and thoroughly brain melting season 3 finale, fans of the Fox sci-fi series are still steaming with burning questions. Did Peter (Joshua Jackson) erase himself from history? Who took the doomsday machine back into the paleolithic past? And whatever happened to the Blimp Guy that Olivia (Anna Torv) predicted would one day kill her? We culled our message boards for the most frequently-posed inquiries and then presented them to Fringe masterminds Jeff Pinkner and J.H. Wyman. They were kind enough to respond, even if they acknowledged that for now, there’s little they can actually say. After all: There is going to be fourth season.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: The finale was filled with glimpses of the Fringe future – or possible Fringe future — from a mysterious, maybe tragic event in Detroit to whatever happened Broyles’ eye. How invested should we be in that version of 2026? Should we be keeping these bits in mind moving forward, or were they just fun ways to flesh out the episode’s possible future?

It’s both. We loved the idea of going into the future and back again, because it allowed us to inform the present of the show with some thematic elements. So if we feel that we need an element of that future to enhance the drama in the present, we’re going to tell that story. Going forward, that glimpse of the future will be part of the tapestry of Fringe, but don’t expect to [go] there a lot. But what we know now — and this is the important part — is that our world is going to break down. That’s what’s waiting for us. I think the fans should be like: “That’s not a future we should be interested in getting to.”

JEFF PINKNER: To further that, one of the things we love to play with is the notion of choice versus fate/synchronicity. Clearly, what Peter did at the end of that episode is that he fundamentally changed the future. Our team is [now] on a separate path. It is unlikely that we’ll get to that specific outcome in 2026. But are events like what happened in Detroit inevitable in any version of the future? TBD.

WYMAN: And we do want people to invest in those questions. We know what happened in Detroit. We know how Broyles lost his eye.

EW:At the end of the finale, we were left to believe that Peter’s consciousness came back to the 2011 present and that he made a different choice than the one that led to the 2026 future. It also appeared that his new choice affected all of history — past, present, and future. He may have even eradicated himself from existence. Can you shed any light on how we should be thinking about the ramifications of all this? Should we be debating tricky concepts like Grandfather Paradox and how they may be relevant to the story?

Absolutely. The most telling part — the most meaningful part — as it relates to Peter is when Walter in the future looked at him and said: “Bringing your consciousness forward in time will have consequences.” And there was a very meaningful, pregnant look between Walter and Peter. Much of the season was about Walter getting comfortable with the notion that he may really have to sacrifice Peter to undo all the damage he has done to the universe. He wasn’t ultimately faced with that choice until 2026. That’s what that choice was supposed to represent.

EW: Is William Bell (Leonard Nimoy) gone for good?

PINKNER: TBD for sure.

WYMAN: For sure.

EW:In the episode “Lysergic Acid Diethylamide,“ our heroes saw a mysterious, menacing man aboard a blimp. Later, Olivia declared that this man would one day kill her. Are we ever going to return to Blimp Guy and that idea?

PINKNER: It’s definitely still in play. Without being too spoilery, there are things you think you have time to explore in any given season, but don’t. But yes, we are very interested in that moment and the implications of that.

WYMAN: A lot of people are wondering: “How did she know he will kill her?” We have an answer for that.

EW: What was the significance of Future Olivia’s fiery water burial?

PINKNER: The idea there was that based on deteriorating conditions of the world at that time, bodies are buried at sea or burned.

EW:The opening credit sequence included a new black and silver color scheme and several new words, like “HOPE” “WATER” and “BIOSUSPENSION.” How were those words pertinent to the season finale?

WYMAN: They weren’t so much pertinent to the finale but for the introduction of the future of the show. In the past, we used words in the credit sequence as signposts for the episode. But this is a new paradigm.

EW:My theory is that those words were clues meant to suggest that next year, Peter will be found in cryogenic suspended animation at the bottom of Reiden Lake near his childhood home.

We can neither confirm nor deny your theories!

EW:Have we seen the last of Sam Weiss?

We’ll see.

EW:Have we seen the last of Moreau, the future terrorist introduced in the finale, played by Brad Dourif?

Brad is such a fantastic actor. We are keeping our options open

EW:Who took the “doomsday machine” back in time?

Either Walter mechanically put the machine through the wormhole or some human being traveled through the wormhole and took it back. Whether or not we’ll follow up on that, we’ll see. Hopefully the notion that came across was that “The First People” included at least Walter, and that he created the machine and sent it through time.

EW:My theory is that a whole army of Peter clones accompanied the machine back through time. That was the significance of Future Peter telling Future Olivia that he was confident they would one day produce a bunch of little Bishops.


EW:One reader writes: “Dear Mr. Pinkner and Mr. Wyman, Please, please, please tell me that Lincoln and Charlie will remain part of the show next season!!”

We love them, too.

EW:Is this the end of the Peter/Olivia romance? Or is that still in play?

Well, at the moment, Peter’s not even in play, so that curtails a relationship. And at the moment there are two Olivias, so it would be interesting to have a love triangle with just two Olivias. It seems a large portion of our fanbase was initially resistant to the idea of a relationship but got on board. We’re still very much interested in exploring it. Hopefully this is a long and unfolding story. We don’t want to shut down any avenues, be it Bell or Lincoln and Charlie or Peter/Olivia.

WYMAN: We think people are invested in the relationship, and we are, too.

PINKNER: We have said from the beginning that Fringe is a family drama masquerading as a science fiction/investigation show. But it’s called Fringe because it’s about three characters that live on the fringe of life and society and have a hard time dealing with their own emotions, but who find each other and find connection with each other. We will remain true to that.

EW:Finally, I have a friend who thinks that season 4 is going to be an elaborate riff on The Dark Tower books by Stephen King. Specifically, does The Waste Lands hold any clues as to how you intend to deal with Peter’s fate, and if so… hello? Are you still there? Well, damn. I guess we ran out of time. Looks like we’ll just have to wait until next season to get that question answered.

Fun and games aside, it’s been a blast bringing you Fringe scoop and the occasional freaky theory this season. Hope to do it again in the fall. Stay freaky, peeps. See you on the fringe… or here: @EWDocJensen


Unknown said...

Nice answers by both, season 4 it's looking pretty cool so far.

Anonymous said...

Explore relationships options with Bell, Lincoln, Charlie and Peter?!? Ummm...no, please.

Anonymous said...

I agree. You can't show us Peter at Olivia's funeral and then hope that we will ever be okay with her and anyone else.

Anonymous said...

I think they meant the characters will not disappear, they don't want to close the door on the option of having Bell back, or Lincoln or Charlie and/or the relationship between Olivia and Peter.

neso said...

effectively killed the show? i do think so.

neso said...

Logical explanation of the last show.

- First people are the watchers, they are in the end responsible for the paradox, because they created it first when they obscured alternative William for seeing the cure and then helping William and Peter not to die.
Because watchers are beings that are submerged in time and can be at any time in any give point they are all so the makers of the machine, and they put it back in time.

- Peter out of the picture means that William never was in jail, Bell never had operate on his brain because there was no need for it. And William never opened the door in the other universe and in the ending no one should be in that statue because paradox is broken (paradox is broken because Peter never existed so everything that happens in last 3 seasons never happened).
- Olivia is working whit Astrid, William is working whit Bell

Maybe you don't like it but this is what you get when you play whit time and paradox.

The show is in reality on the start, you know when we were all talking that it looks to much to x-files.

The show have only one choice now, to start from scratch whit another story because this story ended whit season 3 finale. The only way to stay in the story is to play around whit the time in between, which is useless when you know the ending.

While i hope i am wrong i don't expect season 5.

Anonymous said...

neso if you were a fan you would know that it is walter first of all and most importantly, not william. william is bells firts name... secondly it is the one watcher that set these events into motion and he was tasked to make things as they should be. but as what happened with another watcher and a young girl, he had found interest and even developed emotion towards walter and peter. so your conclusion is very far off. it would make very little sense for the watchers to send that machine back in time when they can just intervene at any point and stop these events from happening if they wanted to.

Anonymous said...

i love this show there should be many more seasons!

neso said...

how do you not get it, even me typing the wrong name, i could be wrong about everything, but i am not in one thing, without Peter nothing happened. I dont even see a reason for him not existing in the first place, he didnt cancel him self out whit the action that he did. but whatever, i hope to that there is more seasons. But this is second time that J.J. Abrams f-ed the plot, maybe i am wrong. we will see.

Anonymous said...

All I know is that Fringe is my favorite show and it always keeps me on the edge of my seat. I can't wait for season 4!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I have soooooo many questions in my mind right now! I wonder if anyone can help me understand what we thnk we DO know. First, the paradox. The first time it all happened, who built the machine? AND at the beginning of s3, the characters all made the assumption that the machine was built to either destroy or create. But in the preview for the finale, it was neither. The finale supposedly revealed that it was a machine used merely to show Peter a possible future.

But what I don't understand is when this all happened the FIRST time, who built this machine and did Peter use it to destroy the other world? And if so, did Walter "reconfigure" the machine so that it would only be used to show Peter the possible future before sending it back in time? So therefore, it had a different purpose in the past than what it was used for in the finale? I don't get it at all.

After reading the commentary about Peter fundamentally changing the future, here is what I think might have happened. I think that when Peter jumped to the future, he jumped to a future of another universe similar to the blue universe and when he jumped back to what we thought was our universe and in the present, he jumped again to another universe and created that bridge. When he disappeared, he was jumping back to OUR universe (which they never show). I think s4 is going to show a possible "present" of ANOTHER universe in which Peter did not exist there and he died as a boy.... hmm...

geoffrobinson said...

I have to believe they'll bring Peter back because of baby Henry. There has to be more to that story than simply as a plot device to turn on the machine.

Otherwise, they have so royally messed up the plot we might as well have Patrick Duffy walk out of the shower right now.

neso said...

only one that could logically disappear is Peter from the future, because after his action he truly never existed. So today Peter should be whit us in season 4.

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