Fringe to Air Musical Episode, World Ends? [UPDATED]


fringe musical episode

Grab your glad rags and your dancing shoes, Fringe is only going to have a musical episode. According to TVGuideMagazine, the FOX show is thinking dancing outside of the box with an all-singing episode, titled “Overture” on April 29th.

Have we been sucked into a parallel reality where nightmares come to life, or is this actually true? Head past the jump, and yeah, you might want to bring those dancing shoes.

It looks like this is happening. Here are more details by way of TVGuideMagazine (spoiler alert):

“Oh, it’s gonna be a blast,” enthused Lance Reddick, who plays Fringe Division tough guy Phillip Broyles. “It’s basically Walter telling a bedtime story to Olivia’s niece and so it has these extreme versions of [the cast].” Among the highlights we can reportedly expect from the nourish fantasia are Reddick’s Broyles tickling the ivories and taking on a Traffic tune, Jasika Nicole’s Astrid performing a ditty from “A Chorus Line,” and Anna Torv’s usually stoic Agent Olivia Dunham vamping it up as a private eye…as well as being serenaded by the last person you’d imagine. “I sing a song to Olivia, which is certainly confusing,” laughs Blair Brown, clearly relishing the oddity of her tech-firm bad-ass Nina Sharp breaking into song.

UPDATED with more info and quotes 20/3/10:

The episode, set to air during a Glee-themed week of musical programming in May, will have the regular cast—including, no doubt, Anna Torv and Joshua Jackson—breaking into song and dance.

No, it’s not some Broadway-themed virus or a Sondheim-style alternate-universe storyline: The musical numbers, which cover popular songs, represent a hallucination by the show’s resident mad scientist, Walter Bishop (John Noble).

“None of us ever thought that it was really going to happen,” said musically trained co-star Jasika Nicole, who plays loyal FBI agent Astrid Farnsworth, in an interview on the show’s set in Vancouver, Canada, last week. “It was just a joke. We were like, ‘Oh, yeah, Fringe should be a musical.’ Dancing and singing and goofing off and stuff. And then John says, ‘So, you know, there’s going to be a musical episode,’ and I was like, ‘Ha, ha, John,’ and he was like, ‘No, really, have you read the script?’”

Nicole adds: “When I first read that, I thought, ‘How are they going to pull this off? This is really weird.’ And it makes complete sense within the story. It’s essentially Walter kind of manifesting his idea. He’s trying to get his mind off of, you know, what’s going on because he’s just waiting to see what’s going to go on with Peter. And essentially he’s kind of created this little world in his head. And so everything is super-symbolic so all the characters embody the qualities that he notices about them the most, which is really neat. And it happens in the 1940s. Everybody’s in 1940s dress, but they still have cell phones and stuff. So it’s just his brain, because he’s telling a story to someone. Sort of like a bedtime story to help ease his anxiety. So we get to sing in it.”

[via SciFi Wire - click for more]

OK FOX, I know that I’ve taken the ‘you know what’ out of Glee in the past, but this is cruel, just cruel!

I have to say though, I do love the way that Fringe is constantly trying new things – Remember the Twitter episode and the airing of a season 1 episode in the middle of season 2. LOL, the controversy those two stunts received – never a dull moment in Fringeland, eh? ;)

I must admit, I am strangely looking forward to this musical episode. Perhaps it’s the Lowatus in me speaking, but there’s something about the idea of Nina serenading Olivia that makes it a MUST WATCH, out of sheer curiosity more than anything. :P

My main concern is that I don’t want this to replace a ‘proper’ episode of Fringe – you know, the type without sing-along frolics. April 29th is when we should be getting episode 2.19, so if FOX insist of going all Glee on us, I would hope that we’ll get this musical episode in addition to a normal episode, and not instead of one. I guess it could even be a 10 minute warm up to an episode? We’ll update when we have more information.

What do you think – are you looking forward to the musical episode of Fringe?

Are You Looking Forward to the Muscial Episode of Fringe?

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Comments

  1. mlj102 says

    Oh my goodness, I just stumbled across this report and I have to admit that, as much as I can’t picture any of this happening, nor can I see how it fits in to what we are used to with Fringe, I laughed out loud when I read that summary. Like you, Roco, I’m a bit concerned, but I’m also strangely looking forward to it. It actually sounds rather delightful and I’m intrigued to actually see it all come together. I just hope it doesn’t all fall flat on its face… I hope it isn’t as random and extreme as it sounds — that it makes sense in a Fringe sort of way — and I hope there is more to the episode than just Walter telling Ella a bedtime story. But I think it could be quite entertaining. Odd that they don’t mention anything about Peter in there… maybe this is from the other side, where there is no Peter? Whatever the case, I think it’s safe to say we will be seeing a side of the characters that we don’t usually see! I wonder if the Observer will get in on the action. On second thought, that could be a bit over the top…

    This is all part of that FOX musical week thing, isn’t it?

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    • LizW65 says

      This sounds completely bizarre, but if any show can pull it off, this one can. As for the Observer joining in, well, Michael Cervaris DID originate the role of Tommy on Broadway, so he’s certainly capable. Frankly, I don’t know quite how to vote…

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  2. Frobozz says

    Oh for god’s sake…I hope it’s not true. I wasn’t a fan of Buffy, and I grew to LOATHE it when they did their “musical” episode (and people couldn’t shut up about how “great” it was).

    What is it with making “musical” episodes? There’s even a movement to have the new show-runners of Doctor Who do a “musical” episode. I know! Let’s combine fads and make it a musical episode…in 3D CGI! Ugh.

    (Why can’t they do a SMART joke episode like “Jose Chung’s ‘From Outer Space’” on the X-Files? That was probably THE BEST X-Files episode that had nothing to do with the mythology and was quite funny to boot.)

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  3. says

    Oh my Lord! I’m getting angry. I have to say I don’t like musicals. The only musical I’ve ever liked was the Buffy episode ‘Once More With Feeling’, because it was funny. If they don’t make this funny as hell this will be even worse for me then ‘Earthling’.
    I hope that Walter has a good reason telling it as a musical, for example that they just watched a musical – or something.
    I think Walter is the last person which they would let babysit Ella, so maybe Olivia will tell Peter in this episode? Maybe Rachel and Astrid meet and have a ladies night? And let’s say Nina and Broyles have … something – uh! go away pictures, go away!

    Btw – FOX has a musical week? God! They have one “successful” musical show and now they have to kick the other audiences in the nuts? Are they going to do the same thing to 24 and House? Not that I would care about 24…

    You can guess what I’m going to vote…

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  4. Page 48 says

    I just saw Buffy’s “Once More With Feeling” for the first time a few weeks ago, and aside from the fact that the spell which caused the singing also acted as a kind of ‘truth serum’, freeing up inner thoughts that the Scoobies would rather have kept suppressed, it was an episode which ranks way down on my list of Buffyverse faves. It mightn’t have been so annoying if they had done a bitchin’ version of “Let’s Do The Time Warp Again”, but that was not the case.

    Is it a coincidence that this announcement comes AFTER the confirmation of a 3rd Season renewal? “Fringe” has so much fine tuning to do before firing up the twangy guitars and turning into a modern day“Oklahoma”.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  5. Ori says

    It’s not bad if it’s done right. It can be a pretty cool way to tell a story…

    I just wished this was a Christmas special instead of something in the last 8 episodes of the show’s second season…

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  6. FlashWriter says

    You know, if I could draw a “thumbs down” I would. I’ve got my eyes closed and I’m slowly shaking my head “no”. I’ve got to admit, though, that the picture of Olivia as a private detective makes me curious. I just hope we’ve got something plugged in wrong and we’re getting a garbled signal. Even if it’s good I can’t imagine how it would fit in any place. Not even as a stand alone. Maybe a dream sequence? Man… I’m just not a happy camper just now… :(

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  7. Xochitl says

    ok, this is weird, I was just thinking about yesterday that Fringe could do some private eye episode, I was reading a fanfic, and something out of the ordinary, like signing ,and now this? :) I still don’t know what to think, but I agree with Rocco, let’s hope this doesn’t replace a normal episode :)

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  8. Karo says

    Wait WHAT?!

    No no no no, bad idea, bad idea!
    They have trouble letting even a simple joke into the show now, how can they SING?

    If it’s true, i want it to be a 5 min internet thing, something for the fans, but i don’t want it anywhere near my television. Please.

    *shakes head*

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  9. FringeFan2009 says

    Haha, well it can be totally terrible, but it could also be incredibly refreshing if it is done right. I’m going to be the optimist here and say that I’m hoping that it will be a hoot :P

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  10. Insane says

    Crossing my fingers:
    AprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJokeX
    AprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJoke
    XAprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJokeXAprilFoolsJoke

    PLEASE GOD!!! LET THIS BE AN APRIL FOOLS JOKE!!! I swear I will laugh about it later!!!! Or I may have to cry. I love this show too much that a musical episode will destroy everything that I love about it.

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  11. says

    Please excuse my language, but WHAT THE FUCK. Are you kidding me? We get it, Glee is doing good, and so is Fringe. Why integrate the two? That’s just horrible, why would anyone even think about doing this. They’re talking like they already filmed it too.
    This is not “gonna be a blast”. No. It won’t.
    Why would anyone think the fans would like this, and if you are a fan that likes this idea, go watch Glee or something horrible like that.

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  12. Dr. Bishop says

    Roco yr a damn tool..I typically never say shit but this is the most blatantly biased post you’ve yet made. I for one think this has the potential to be the funniest, most crazy-cool episode of Fringe yet, and I’ve been a hardcore fanboy since the S1 premiere. I know you made a poll and whatever, so I guess you have that as yr defence. But try reporting news without such a damn bent in the article like a normal writer..anyway, as I’m sure you’ll delete this comment, I’ll end things here.

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  13. PrimulaBlue says

    Ummm… I think this could be hilarious! Also, Walter’s view of Peter must be beyond awesome, and Peter must sing.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  14. mlj102 says

    Whoa — everyone just calm down! I wasn’t expecting such intense reactions to this news. There’s no need to panic or automatically assume this is going to be as terrible as everyone is making it out to be. We really don’t know anything about the episode at this point — we certainly don’t have any context for it, so there’s no way to come to any decent conclusions about the episode. We certainly can’t know if it will be a huge success or a huge failure. We won’t know until we see it. And even if it is the biggest failure known to television, it’s one episode and certainly won’t be the end of the world.

    And to Dr. Bishop, who felt it necessary to attack Roco’s post, I must say, I don’t see the bias you claim exists in Roco’s post. In my opinion, Roco was very fair in what he said and how he said it: he expressed a bit of hesitation towards the idea, but also implied that it could turn out to be quite good. And even if you don’t agree with me about that, it really doesn’t matter. This is Roco’s site and he is kind enough to keep it updated and provide the excellent reviews and pictures and news updates, and he can really say whatever he wants.

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  15. B. says

    HAHAHAHHAHA. WTF? I’M DIEING TO SEE THIS HAPPENING! I THINK IT WOULD BE FUNNY…I HOPE. I NEVER WOULD EXPECTED SUCH A THING…
    BUT, YOU KNOW… IS FRINGE! “IMAGINE THE IMPOSSIBILITIES” ;)

    NOW, I can’t wait till april!

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  16. Danielle says

    I’m really quite pessimistic about this, but, hell, it’s Fringe. They sprung an alternate world and a magic FBI Agent [for lack of a better word xD] on us and we accepted those.
    But, dictionary.com [I didn't know what it meant xD] said Overture actually means “An instrumental composition intended especially as an introduction to an extended work” or ” An introductory section or part, as of a poem; a prelude” so it could just be a 10 minute one-off thing.
    Hopefully.

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  17. Bety says

    I don’t think that this will replace a proper episode. Think it’s going to be a different way to look at our beloved heroes! :P
    I’m anxious to see Nina, Broyles, Peter and Olivia singing… this is going to be BRILLIANT! \o/

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  18. Rebecca says

    While everyone is upset about the musical (not sure why though, Buffy did the same thing and that episode worked with memorable songs as well it also pushed the storylines ahead) , I am more upset about that Peter is not mentioned at all. Even if Peter isn’t going to sing, what’s his point in this episode? The writers could at least have the courtesy to say unfortunately ‘peter will not sing or dance’ instead of just not mentioning him at all. How come of the three leads, Peter has to be the one to not do anything?

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    • mlj102 says

      Maybe what Peter does is so fabulous, they don’t want to spoil the surprise…

      Whatever the case, I’m sure there’s a legitimate reason why Peter was not specifically mentioned in this report, and it will make sense why when the actual episode airs.

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  19. jkyarr says

    I’m interested in knowing if they intend to break the 4th wall during this episode? Will the actors chide their characters or step out of character to comment (or sing) about a situation in the story, etc? Its one thing for them to use the musical medium to tell an episode in their story (I’m all for that!), and its another for them to get satirical about their own show, its characters and plot and use a musical medium to poke fun at themselves. It seems to me (although I admit a limited amount of experience with such occasions) that when TV show opt for a special musical episode (like Scrubs and Buffy) that the episode takes a satirical, 4th-wall-breaking, kind of turn. My initial blush on Fringe using such a tactic would be to expect a disappointment. However I wish to withhold judgment about the use of the musical medium until I see how they employ it. I actually find the idea exciting and stimulating! Let’s hope they stay true to the continuity of their story, genre, plot, etc and still rock the house!

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  20. charliefan19 says

    Oh my goodness…I still am not believing this(?). I love musicals but I think I would have a hard time with this. (hopefully Peter doesn’t sing too much…lol, I love Joshua Jackson but “Row Row Row Your Boat was a bit painful imho)

    Like: Thumb up 0

  21. xochitl says

    Well, after giving it a little more thought this could go very good or very bad :) Frankly, I’m in a point in Fringe where they could say “we are gonna have flying monkyes” and i would say “okay, go ahead, whatever you want I wll keep watching you” that’s how much I am into Fringe, and I do like musicals.

    Now, being objective, or trying to, as mlj102 said let’s wait for the episode, maybe is just a fragment or if it is the whole episode the show has good writers, I know they have made mistakes and it sounds weird, but let’s give them the benefit of the doubt, again as mjl102 said it’s just one episode and we don’t have a lot of context to it, and we are not going to die or stop watching frine if it’s bad, well at least I won’t, probably the only thing that bothers me it that is so close to the season finale.

    Maybe it’s not as bad as it sounds, at least they are trying new things, and I do believe the writers will write something meaningful for the plot in the middle of it. let’s just wait ad see! (or listen) :)

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  22. Rebecca says

    I don’t think you can judge Josh’s singing based on row, row your boat. He was annoyed with Walter for keeping him up so he sang him to sleep.

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    • charliefan19 says

      I actually have heard him sing other times…but whatever, it was more of a joke than anything :)

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  23. MysteryObsessed says

    This is a joke, right?
    This is gotta be a joke…

    I just cannot imagine that, sorry
    ( With Buffy it´s different, that was a kind of show where you could do such thing and it did fit into the story and the plot of the episode )

    If only this news would have been released on 1st April…

    Like: Thumb up 0

  24. says

    I hope they do this as one whole, normal length episode, and that it actually incorporates lots of the mythology. Would love to see a dance off between The Observers and The Shapeshifters. Wonder if the singing scenes will be done as a music video, because they could make them very symbolic music videos, with the green-green-green-red and the nubmer 8 and other such things appearing. And its good to see FRINGE acting on the fringe of what is expected for serious science-fiction TV. Very much looking forward to it. I imagine they would release a CD and so hopefully make lots of money/interest in the show and so give it more chance of continuing if viewed by a larger range of audience.

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  25. says

    Emotions are running high in here, aren’t they :)

    I personally am looking forward to see what they are going to do with this episode, but I have the impression that everyone has missed out on something important: Walter is going to be telling Ella a bedtime story.

    WALTER.
    STORYTELLING.

    Not only is Walter’s imagination bound to create some hilarious scenarios such as the ones mentioned by the press release, but isn’t anyone else excited about the ‘scavenger hunt’ for information this episode is going to be? Think about it – storytelling is always based to a certain extent on reality. Writers inspire themselves from their experiences. This is all the more exciting that Walter has a faulty memory – and storytelling is a therapeutic technique used in various settings to help patients put pieces of the puzzle together.

    I trust the writers and producers now (I didn’t previously, you only have to check my reviews to be convinced of that lol), and if they are going to do a musical episode, I highly doubt it’s going to be random and not make much sense. I’m sure it’s going to fit right into the Fringe-mosaic :)

    Like: Thumb up 0

  26. Anjali says

    I don’t know why everyone is freaking out about this episode. I actually think they can pull this off!!

    I’m really looking forward to this one!!!

    Like: Thumb up 0

  27. February says

    My initial reaction:(in the style of Rose Nadler) Oh, hell no!

    Then I thought about it, and after thinking it was a bad idea I now think that it will be horrible.

    A musical episode? A MUSICAL EPISODE?!?
    Seriously, WTF?

    And there was me thinking that Fox wanted Fringe to succeed.
    A musical week is a terrible idea. What were they thinking?

    Like: Thumb up 0

  28. Rebecca says

    Fox renewed Fringe for a third season so yeah, Fox wants it to succeed. Just because you don’t agree with this particular episode doesn’t mean that that fox want to to see show fail.

    why don’t people stop whining and wait until the show airs, then let out all the frustrations.

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  29. LizW65 says

    Having read Roco’s update, I have to say I can see this actually working within the context of the show. It still seems like something they should have waited a couple of years to do, though.

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  30. says

    After I’ve read the update I think with it all being ‘super-symbolic’ it could actually work for me then – so we get a real glimpse of what the Fringe Dvision is like in Walters mind.

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  31. Con says

    Yeah, the music week is a stupid idea, but it looks like Fringe is trying to make it work with the show. Seeing the characters in Walter’s mind will still tie in with the theme of perception.

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  32. Hatch says

    The more I think about this, the more I’m warming to it.

    What I’m REALLY curious about is how they will incorporate this whole thing into 24.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • LizW65 says

      Ha! I gave up on “24″ a couple of seasons ago, but I think I’d actually PAY to watch Jack Bauer et. al. burst into song.

      Like: Thumb up 0

      • charliefan19 says

        I actually thought of the “24 Goes Glee” idea right away – the “Fringe musical” seems quite a bit more believable. The idea of the entire CTU cast bursting into song/dance is ludicrous. lol.

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  33. Xochitl says

    I just read the update: Now that makes sense! :) if they go all symbolic and Walter is telling the story to Ella it’s going to make complete sense in a Fringe way. Now I’m really looking forward to it! :) (I knew they would know how to make it work)

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  34. jkyarr says

    Jack Bauer sings his threats at the terrorist sitting across the interrogation room… Oh yeah, that will work! >clears voice and begins singing< "Tell me where in Manhattan the bomb will go off or I WILL be forced to use the 'Dora the Explorer' music on you, just like Guantanamo!" Terrorist breaks into plea-ful aria. "Please, oh please! Anything but Dora!" And it only gets worse from there…

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  35. says

    Jokes on us right? We he have what, 8 episodes remaining and we all were hoping they’d stop pissing about and tell an actual story instead of these stand-alone anecdotes? Guess we were wrong…make that 7 episodes, since we can safely consider this one to be a stand-alone write-off like oh so many we’ve endured this season.

    A musical? Really? Oh the Whedonites are all cheering now. This isn’t American Idol. I don’t CARE if John Noble can sing or not. If I wanted a musical I’d turn on any of Disney’s latest abominations. I expected more out of Fringe but hey, if the writers want to continue avoiding telling an actual coherent story, more power to them.

    Right now all I can see is Fringe on rocket-powered water-skis jumping over a shark. On the upside, since this is obviously going to be yet another stand-alone snoozefest, I can safely ignore this episode.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  36. Drakan says

    I’m more willing to watch it before judging it. Who knows? It could be a terrible episode, but then again, it could be nothing short of awesome. We won’t know until it airs, anyway. C:

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  37. MikeMike says

    I could not be more against this. It is one thing to have the cast of Scrubs sing because that is a comedy.

    For me this is the worst idea that they’ve come up with thus far.

    I do not like with characters sing and in my opinion Fringe is better than this.

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  38. FlashWriter says

    I’m still trying to get my head around this. Maybe it’s the different coffee beans they’re using in the break room, but after my second cup I’ve got to admit to some curiosity and I don’t feel nearly as horrified of the idea as I did at first. What with the update and all, it sounds like it fits in the only way I thought it could. I just love Jasika’s enthusiasm and I’m looking forward to her number. Have we confirmed this is an official episode or one that’s being added–an “addition to”? Anyway, I think I’d change my vote if I could. See ya. :)

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  39. Rebecca says

    Not sure why people automatically assume musicals are supposed to be comedic. what about Sweeny todd, Rent, dreamgirls, phantom of the opera and west side story?
    My point being is that those movies have such serious subject matter as well serious musical numbers. So why can’t Fringe, a mostly serious show, have a musical episode? those people who detest this musical episode, have they ever seen a musical or are they assuming all musicals are supposed to be like glee or high school musical or its supposed to be comedy?

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    • says

      Well, as one of the ‘please no musical episode’-guys, I’ll try and answer some of you (rhetorical) questions:
      ‘Not sure why people automatically assume musicals are supposed to be comedic.’ – Because they come over to many of us as goofy and we can’t take them seriously enough.
      ‘So why can’t Fringe, a mostly serious show, have a musical episode?’ – Sure it can have one, but Fringe also is a very funny (both meanings of the word) show, were you really can’t say that much if it takes itself seriously or not.
      ‘those people who detest this musical episode, have they ever seen a musical or are they assuming all musicals are supposed to be like glee or high school musical or its supposed to be comedy?’ – I can only speak for myself now but I have seen musicals (not the on stage ones but in movies).
      My basic problem with musicals is not the singing but the dancing part. It’s just so that it looks so goofy and unrealistic when characters in the middle of a conversation break out singing and soon dancing around, and then all coinsedently other people come up in the background and start dancing in a groupdance they have never been performing before. Please try to understand us, many people don’t have anything against musicals at all and even enjoy them from time to time, but it’s a pain in the ass for us that our most beloved show get’s a musical episode just for the sake of it.
      Also this is another point of the whole thing that has nothing to do with the actually episode but more with the industry: Only because we had ‘High School Musical’ and ‘Glee’ why do so many shows have to have musical episodes now? Many don’t see anything else behing it then making money, because a musical episode is always a big thing and a special episode, and you can sell it on solo DVD and so on. What are they trying to do? Pulling over the viewers of Glee to Fringe? Giving the show better ratings by making it less original and more ‘mainstream’? See? That’s the part I don’t understand.

      Still with the update about the ‘super-symbolism’ I maybe able to add another episode to the list of musical episodes I really enjoyed – would be the second one on that list…

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  40. merlin says

    “Have we been sucked into a parallel reality where nightmares come to life, or is this actually true?”

    where the hell is the bottom of the page – *scrolling, *scrolling –

    this is the most confounding idea yet..

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  41. TomC says

    Firstly i have never given Glee the time of day and will not EVER. I think its a ‘adult’ High School Musical which can only mean one thing in my book!

    Back to Fringe. When you first posted about a musical episode, my first thoughts were…. Great, jump on the Glee bandwagon and make a S**t episode to hopefully pull in the ratings!!! Which imo is probably the reason why they have done it, but……… after reading what the episode will be like\about i.e. crazy walter world, i cannot wait to see this! Im hoping for a crazy, funny and tounge-in-cheek episode that wont take itself too seriously.

    Any bets on if P&O will share a smooch in this ep? It just seems like something walter wants to happen.

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  42. Inkblood says

    I have to agree with TomC; Glee is a bad joke.
    A really old bad joke that no one wants to hear anymore.
    So ruining Fringe rating makes TOTAL sence, since the glee ratings suck blood. People won’t take Fringe seriously ever again, but it will hilarious for the die-hard fans(*raises hand*) that do take fringe seriously. Since it’s in Walter’s head, and Walter fully funds and supports Peter&Livia togetherness, we should see a few too-long gazes and a big, over-the-top kiss.
    Which i very much look forward to. :-)

    PS; rebecca, i found phantom of the opera and sweeny todd strangely comical. so ha.
    ha ha.
    lol.
    roflmbo.

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  43. says

    I watched the episode. Sorry but Fringe has now jumped the shark. This was lazy writing. You know a show is hard up for scripts when a show falls back on “the musical” thinking that it’s original and artistic. It’s been there, done that so many times, like generic plot points written down and pulled from a hat.

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  44. Wade says

    Just saw it. Terrible. Disappointing. Lets pretend this episode never happened and get back to the Fringe we all love.

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