Like a lot of people I started watching Fringe because of Joshua Jackson. But it's more complicated than that. It looked cool and freaky, like X-Files in its day. There was also Mark Valley, who I had loved since Keen Eddie. Of course, according to the commercials I remember, he was going to be in
the show a lot more than he was. Oh well.
But Walter is the reason I stayed.
John Noble's portrayal of Walter was so immensely powerful, that I just can't find the words. Walter is one of the best characters I have ever come across in a tv series. I can't imagine anyone else as Walter Bishop. His complicated relationship with Peter was so real, and so heartwarming. This, of course, all in the midst of freakymonsters and as much grossness as they thought they could get away with. Despite all of that, Fringe was always a story about family to me. Walter and Peter's relationship was the center that all of the stories revolved around. As long as I felt that, the rest didn't matter to me so much. It really didn't matter to me if Peter and Olivia ever hooked up, but I did enjoy the tension Fauxlivia's visit left them with.
Now that the show is over, and we have received all the answers we're going to get. I'm both sad and happy. I'm sad that some thing's never got to be explained. I'm glad that they got the chance to at least close that chapter on the Bishop's life. We finally found out who the Observer's really were and why they were here. I remember when we were all sure they were aliens. But, the truth was even scarier.
This was also a theme, of course.
It all came down to science that looked like magic. There was always some explanation that made sense to Walter, if not me. I'm sad that when we got to revisit the Alt Universe, we didn't get to see the Alt Astrid or Charlie. Or see Walternate in all his malicious glory one more time. But alas, there just wasn't the time. I am grateful that FOX allowed us one last season to let the Bishops tell their story.
(One more cancellation a la Firefly, and I may never watch the channel again. No. I'm never going to let it go. Bowncoats forever!)
If you've never watched Fringe, or missed it somehow, it's being re-aired on the Science Channel. Please give it a chance. It's a beautiful, if convoluted, story about family, friendship, and freaky science. I guess that's it. I don't have anything profound to say, just that I loved this little show, for all its twists and turns, I will never forget it.
Goodnight Walter. I will worry about you out there all alone.