Tuesday, 10 April 2012

FRINGE, 4.17 – "Everything In Its Right Place"

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

I wasn't enthused about "Everything In Its Right Place", which actually made me realise I've come to find Lincoln Lee (Seth Gabel) boring. I didn't always feel this way; in fact, there was a time when I was itching for Peter to disappear, so Lee could replace him. But when my prayers were answered this year, Fringe's writers didn't succeed in taking the Lee/Olivia (Anna Torv) twosome to the next level. Or any kind of level. So Lee's just quietly jealous about Olivia and Peter's romance and helpful to the logistics of a few plots, and that's not very fun to watch.

"Everything In Its Right Place" gave Lee his very own episode to headline (although I'd rather see Astrid get a proper story to herself), and it was diverting but largely forgettable. I'm frankly bored with shape-shifters on Fringe (no matter how much the writers keep tinkering to keep them feeling fresh), which didn't help. The best part of this episode was getting to spend more time in the alternative universe, which has been sadly pushed into the background this season. I still love the pop-culture differences that get revealed (e.g. Batman doesn't exist, with Mantis his closest surrogate), and the sassier "Fauxlivia" is always fun to have around on a case.

It was also interesting to be shown that the alt-Earth's Fringe Division are openly celebrated by the public for their efforts tackling freakish events, whereas the team in our world are a clandestine department of the FBI that never receive any praise. The suggestion that the very existence of a bi-universal "bridge" has started to heal alt-Earth's problems was also well-received, as I don't recall this being made known before. Did the writers introduced that in case they need to scramble for a happy ending if Fox axe the show in five episodes' time?

Overall, Seth Gabel's a likable actor but I no longer find Lee compelling, which is a shame because he was very promising when first introduced as the naïve agent with the geek-chic glasses. Maybe Lee's jealousy over Peter/Olivia will become a bigger part of Fringe in this last batch of episodes, or some of his personal history will have an impact in unexpected ways soon, I don't know. Or maybe he'll just start dating Fauxlivia, although that option would probably lack drama. All I know is "Everything In Its Right Place" was another hour of Fringe that slipped by pleasantly enough, but fell short of impressing me.

Maybe you disagree?

written by David Fury & J.R Orci (story by J.R Orci & Matt Pitts) / directed by David Moxness / 6 April 2012 / Fox