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May 10, 2009

'Fringe' season finale will mark 'fundamental shift'

Leonard Nimoy fringeJ.J. Abrams promises the season finale of Fringe will mark "a really interesting shift in the fundamental paradigm of the show in a very cool way."

The Fringe co-creator was on a media conference call Friday to talk about his Fox series, an act of publicity that impressed the TV reporters since his Star Trek revamp was opening the same day. The writer-producer-director was having a King of All Media moment with Fringe recently getting a second-season order and critics gushing about Trek. Box office tallies had yet to come in, but Abrams didn’t seem worried, and had spent the day catching up with his son.

When asked about how the second season of Fringe would differ from the first, Abrams said, “The first year is about learning there is an enemy ... I would argue Season 2 is about getting to know the enemy ... Season 1 is building to a very specific type of confrontation ... there will be a really interesting shift in the fundamental paradigm of the show in a very cool way.”

Abrams added the finale will leave viewers with an idea of what the next season will look like and excited about what comes next.

“What’s particularly cool about where we’re finally going now is the story is working on all the character’s strengths,” Abrams said. “Over the course of the season you find what’s most exciting about a character. You’ll get a little piece of Peter’s ultimate story [in the finale], but it’s also a huge turning point for the other two characters as well.”

Another difference is Season 2 will feature less clunky exposition straining to bring new viewers up to speed.

“There’s nothing more crazy than having that sort of massive chuck of exposition thrown at you in the story,” he said. “Sometimes the desire of producers/writers/network/studio is to provide clarity ... those kind of monologues of exposition don’t help anyone ... [actor Lance Reddick] delivers them beautifully, but any actor tasked with catching people up deserves a drink at the end of the day.”

One reporter asked Abrams if he found it “infuriating” that the last couple minutes of the show was recently cut off for many DVR users due to American Idol overrun. The reporter said Fox was run by “drooling goddamn idiots” for such moves, which perhaps isn’t the best tactic to get re-invited to participate in future interviews, but got a chuckle out of Abrams.

“I will say that I have a different opinion about the network, but I, too, have heard from a number of people [about the issue],” Abrams said. “It is infuriating. And I would be happy to send you the DVD."

See: Fox's "Fringe" season one on DVD

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