Quick spoilers for last night's "Fringe" coming up just as soon as I smile...
Not improving yet. If anything, I'm less interested the further in we go. If it wasn't for the John Noble character, I don't know that I'd still be watching at all. Even there, the "crazy old man on drugs" jokes are starting to wear thin, and it's only episode three. This is a much duller show than anything with J.J. Abrams' name attached to it should be. Hell, "Six Degrees" was more engaging than this.
Among my problems:
• This is two out of three cases where the impetus for Olivia being involved hasn't been fringe-y enough. Yes, the trapped-in-amber bus thing was sci-fi-ish, but with both this case and the transparent skin incident from the pilot, the really out-there science came into play with the case's solution. If not for the poor bastard with the incidental ESP, which nobody in the FBI knew about when the case started, this could practically be an episode of "NCIS." (And I like "NCIS," but for the characters rather than the storytelling; and few of the "Fringe" characters are engaging in any way.)
• The big shocking moments really aren't. We need a moratorium on people stepping in front of buses, intentionally or not, on all primetime shows, but especially on JJ Abrams shows. That's at least three, counting the kid on "Felicity," Juliette's ex-husband on "Lost," and now the bad guy here, and it's just funny now. Meanwhile, was I supposed to be surprised by the reveal that Broyles gave the chip to Blair Brown? The Most Expository Scene In The History of Explaining Things from last week's episode already established that the two of them are working together without Olivia's knowledge. And, for that matter, the pilot already established that Massive Dynamics had John Scott's body and was doing stuff to do it, so the dun-dun-DUN! moment at the episode's end fell completely flat.
• The action is lame. "Alias," "Lost" and "24" have all shown that it's possible to do interesting, exciting action sequences on a weekly TV schedule and budget. Whenever "Fringe" goes into action mode, though, it's the same generic stuff we've seen on TV for decades. I could have seen that chase and shootout sequence at the end on dozens of other shows, and often done better.
• Anna Torv can smile, still can't be interesting.
What did everybody else think?