I don’t know about you, but I’m still decompressing from the Fringe season 2 finale and the 20 hour Lost series finale happening in the same week (thanks fate!). But the fun is just beginning for the UK, who will be able to see what happens to Pete-ah and the gang, beginning this Tuesday on Sky.
In preparation for the event, Lance Reddick has been talking to Digital Spy about what fans can expect in the finale. He throws up (not literally) a few things that I found interesting – head past the jump to check it out.
May contain spoilers for those in the UK who watch at Sky pace.
What can you tell us about the upcoming season finale?
“We figure out that Peter’s disappeared, so we decide to go after him. The first part is pretty much about the decision and the preparation to go after him and the second part is about what ensues and the pursuit and whether or not we get him back. You find out [whether we get him back], however… the season finale is still a huge cliffhanger.”
Were you surprised when you read the finale?
“I was shocked. My jaw hit the ground. I was like, ‘No, no, no, no!’ I was thrilled. I mean, it could take two seasons just to resolve that.”
Do we meet an alternate character for you?
“Yes, you see an alternate Broyles. It’s interesting. Once again I don’t want to say too much. You’ve already seen at the end of this last episode the alternate Walter. [Broyles] is still the head of Fringe division but he’s much more of a footsoldier. I don’t want to say too much about the Fringe over there but… it’s the same, but it’s different. One of the things that Jeff Pinkner (executive producer) said to me on a couple of occasions that even though in the alternate universe the actual state of the world is much worse, the characters actually are not as broken.”
The idea that the people in the alternate universe (AU) are “less broken” than our heroes is interesting, and I think many of us picked up on that during the course of the finale. I remember mentioning how Altlivia seems less empathetic and troubled than our Olivia but that it wouldn’t take much to awaken her to Olivia’s reality, since both appear to be made from same inherent ‘stock’.
I just love the distorted parallels between the two worlds and the characters who occupy them. It’s worth considering why the Doubles are essentially less damaged and what this says about the human condition, if anything? Is it possible that people on the Other Side are desensitized to the extent that they are less brittle? Are they an example of how resilient humans are when faced with extreme circumstances? But at what cost? And where does true strength lie. Does it lie with those on the Other Side who are less damaged, or can our heroes rebuild their broken pieces to form a better human whole?
I just find it fascinating to consider how our heroes and their Doubles have been influenced by their respective environments, and that this, in part, is linked to Walter crossing over to save Peternate. Walter may have shattered a world, but in doing so he’s also helped prepare and shape the occupants of the Other Side. If the whole world is indeed a ‘stage’, then we’ve seen the players respond accordingly.
Enough of my babbling, here’s more from Lance:
There’s been a bit of a debate recently between mythology episodes and ‘monster of the week’ episodes, so which do you prefer?
“Personally, I prefer the mythology episodes. I feel like that’s really where the series lives. I think it’s going to be much more about the mythology [in the third season]. I do think there’ll be some monster of the week stuff, but I think it’s going to be much more about the mythology.”
Many of us have been saying the same thing since the first season – the show lives and breathes in the mythology and the characters’ interactions within it. (I know not everyone agrees with this). It’s really encouraging to hear that they’ll be less MOTW episodes, although I didn’t think there was much chance of us going back after the mythology/mythalone run that we’ve just had.
Is it the case that the alternate characters are bad and the primary characters are good, or is it more complex than that?
“It’s interesting. That’s what I thought before we kind of got over there, but no. It’s much more complicated than that. This is one of those areas where I find Fringe interesting and pretty traditionally sci-fi, in that this is where it becomes kind of veiled sociology and politics. Both versions think that the other people are the bad people.”
Damn straight it’s more complicated than that, because life is more complicated than that. While I often refer to the shape-shifter who took Charlie’s identity as “Evil Charlie”, that’s just a moniker. Good and bad is relative and cannot be apportioned to one side or the other, despite what Walternate said. One of the things that makes this show so great, for me, is that it is very human – and the more fantastical it gets (time-travel, alternate universes, etc), the more human, relatable and moving the show seems to become. And I mean that, I’m not just paying lip-service.
I see the show’s mythology as being a grand platform for discovering and examining these issues of humanity and how well (or badly) we as people deal with situations. You only have to look at some of the show’s core mythology devices to see that they all have something in common. To my mind they all speak of hope. Of redemption, forgiveness, love, happiness, second chances. The list goes on. These are human desires, if not needs, that we all chase at one point or another. And while there is conflict within these themes, that is also true of life. So like Lance says, let’s live and breath where the mythology is at.
I’ve done far too much talking – it must be the Lowatus and not having a review and Observations to write for the first time in oh so long. You can read the entire interview with Lance Reddick here, although it does contain spoilers for those in the UK who haven’t seen the finale.