Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Fringe: Turn Off the Volume, Forget the Spy-Fi--It's Still Got Jabrams Written All Over It

There'll be plenty of time to discuss how Fringe is similar to J.J. Abrams's previous works in content (dead boyfriends, daddy issues, etc.), but for now, I'd like to talk briefly about the ways in which this show echoes its predecessors in format.

Two of the FBI agents are Agent Francis and Agent Scott. Lost experience would have me wait for an Agent Key to show up at some point.

Fringe uses pushthroughs with dramatic effect the same way Alias used to.

While Alias utilized the font FF Confidential and Lost uses Century Gothic pretty liberally, Fringe has appropriated (I believe) a form of Helvetica.

The doors on that water tank look an awful lot like a DHARMA hatch.

I spent about 20 minutes trying to find a numerical relationship between 627, the flight number of the doomed Hamburg plane, and 815, the flight number of the doomed Sydney plane, to no avail. Then, they go and flat-out call the bad guy Passenger #108.

The main title design looks like The X-Files's. Just saying. (Also, John Scott all goopy looked just like the virus-infected corpses in Fight the Future. Just saying.)

It also has several of its own unique features, particularly color-wise. Alias was all about bright colors--I always associate Alias with the color red. Lost is very jungly and green and khaki. Fringe is just very blue and grey. You know how Alias had the Disney Happy Paint that separated it from The X-Files? Well, Fringe, which shoots in Toronto, disposed of the Disney Happy Paint and exchanged it for Fox Network Grey Flat Paint.

Also, a lot of the scary scenes are shot really interestingly. A lot of first-person running shots, and a lot of flashing. It feels jumpy and tantalizing. When Olivia was walking through that airplane (yikes), they showed split-seconds of the grossest thing I've ever seen, but only flashes. I loved it.

Any other visual clues to the Jabrams universe I'm missing?

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