Is Nina Fringe’s Cigarette Smoking Man?

September 17, 2008

It’s a good thing I’ve already had my children because the opening scene of Fringe’s “The Same Old Story” was freaky enough for me to never want to be pregnant again.

Michael Lavine/FOX

FRINGE airing Tuesdays (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) this fall on FOX. Pictured: Blair Brown as Nina Sharp ©2008 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Michael Lavine/FOX

But that scene wasn’t nearly as unexpected as seeing the creepy Nina Sharp among the suits Broyles is updating with the latest case and bios of his new team in the second episode of J.J. Abram’s latest thriller.

We are only two weeks into this new series, but it’s already clear that Nina isn’t someone to be trusted.  Last week the Chief Operating Officer of Massive Dynamics was almost threatening towards Olivia.  The two met when Olivia was looking for the man who released the nasty toxin.  That man turned out to be a former MD employee.

Anyone else wonder how Nina defines “former?”

Add the fact that the yet unseen founder of MD, William Bell, is Walter’s former lab partner and you have to admit that Nina is pretty suspicious.  So why on earth is Broyles briefing her?

All I could think of was the X-Files’ Cigarette Smoking Man.  He appeared to work with Mulder and Scully while secretly getting briefs on their work and himself working for the force that is behind much of the phenomenon the agents were investigating.

Sounds like Nina.  But instead of chain smoking, she’s got that creepy robotic arm.  We’ve yet to see who she works for and she’s suddenly very helpful to Olivia.

Interesting that Nina is so helpful when she was so verbal in that briefing that she didn’t think that Olivia, Walter and Peter were the appropriate people for Broyles’ new team.

Also, pretty fascinating that Massive Dynamics just happens to hold the patent on the experimental piece of equipment that Walter and Peter need to identify the killer in this week’s mystery.  Exactly what does Massive Dynamics do?  And what are they using this equipment for?

And when Olivia returns the equipment, Nina tries to insert herself as a confidant, pumping Olivia for information about the case, even offering her a job.  Now that’s one way to get Olivia to stop pursuing the Pattern.

But Olivia saw through the ruse.  And apparently Broyles isn’t all that taken in by Nina either, offering Olivia a warning about the MD executive.

Still I’m left wondering who that committee was that Broyles is briefing and why Nina has a seat on it.

What do you think?

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Related Story

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John Scott Returns to Guide Fringe’s Olivia in ‘Power Hungry’

‘The Arrival’ of the Observer Brings New Mysteries on Fringe

What is the Mystery Behind Fringe’s Peter Bishop?

Fringe Premiere Promises New Hit, Lots of Intrigue


Fringe Premiere Promises New Hit, Lots of Intrigue

September 10, 2008

If I only watch one new show this fall, it’ll have to be J.J. Abram’s Fringe.  Last night’s premiere just happened to be my first glimpse into the new fall season and judging from Fringe‘s debut this season should be a good one.

Fringe trio Walter, Olivia and Peter

FRINGE: An unlikely trio uncovers a deadly mystery involving a series of unbelievable events and realizes they may be part of a larger, more disturbing pattern that blurs the line between the possible and the impossible on FRINGE premiering Tuesday, Sept. 9 (8:00-9:35 PM ET/PT) this fall on FOX. Pictured L-R: John Noble, Anna Torv, Jasika Nicole and Joshua Jackson ©2008 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Mark Ben Holzberg/FOX

Fox’s new series reminded me of an updated X-Files with a dash of Alias‘ science, Lost‘s intrigue and 24‘s terrorists.  And like the X-files, fans will find that the “truth is out there” and I for one am looking for to the adventure to find it.

But unlike our friends Scully and Mulder, this team isn’t looking for aliens.  Instead they are looking for those behind “The Pattern” – a series of mysterious events that are a result of experiments by ethically challenged scientists dabbling in “fringe” science – science dealing with topics on the fringe of science like genetic mutation, reanimation, mind control, invisibility teleportation and astral projection.

In the opening episode, we see just one of these events when all the passengers and flight crew of Glatterflug Flight 627 (so glad they didn’t use Oceanic, but what is it that Abrams has against planes) mysteriously die after a bioterrorism agent is released leaving nothing more than skeletons and piles of body fluids and tissues.  (yes, it was a little gruesome to watch.)

In the search for the scientist responsible for releasing the toxin, FBI agent Olivia Dunham’s partner and lover John Scott (Mark Valley) is exposed to the raw ingredients of the toxin in an explosion leaving him to a slowed version of the same fate dealt to the Flight 627 passengers.

Now Olivia (Anna Torv) must not only solve the mystery behind Flight 627, she must find a cure for John.  Her research leads her to Walter Bishop (John Noble), a brilliant scientist who did research in fringe science for the government in the 70s and 80s.  In fact, his work turns out to be the basis for the contagion used in Flight 627.

But Walter isn’t a suspect.  For the last 17 years he has been incarcerated in a mental hospital following the death of one of his lab assistants and speculation that he was conducting tests on humans.  Now he is allowed no visitors outside of family.

Since Walter might hold the key to not only Flight 627, but treatment for John, Olivia seeks out Walter’s only son, Peter (Joshua Jackson), to gain access to Walter.  A genius in his own right, Peter has refused to follow in the footsteps of the “mad scientist” father he’s separated himself from for so many years, choosing instead to wander from job to job and place to place getting himself into his own trouble in the process.

Together the trio – Olivia, Walter and Peter – work to solve the case and save John from the toxin.  But what they discover changes their perspectives forever.  The threesome then signs up to work for Homeland Security Agent Phillip Broyles (Lance Reddick, The Wire and Lost) to investigate The Pattern.

I originally tuned in because I like J.J. Abrams and I’m a big Pacey – I mean Joshua Jackson – fan, but I’ll be returning for the intrigue.  There were a few predictable moments like how the team came to work for Broyles, but for the most part, I was on the edge of my seat throughout the show.

The show is also laced with a nice blend of humor.  The cow in the first episode was my favorite especially when they are all eating lunch with it. 

Joshua Jackson does a great job of showing his character’s conflict between his interest (and knack) for the science with his distrust of his father.  Peter acts as Walter’s conscious preventing him from becoming Dr. Frankenstein.  As Olivia says, Peter is the only one who can “speak Walter.”

It’s also easy to see that there will be some chemistry between Peter and Olivia in future episodes.  For being such a loner, Peter really seems to care about people.

I’m also very intrigued by the mysterious Massive Dynamics and the yet-unseen William Bell, who just happened to be Walter’s former lab partner.  It’ll be no mystery to learn that Massive Dynamics is behind The Pattern.  What will be surprising is to learn why and how far Bell and company have gone with the technology.

Nina Sharp (Blair Brown) – and her robotic arm – is very creepy as the Massive Dynamics Chief Operating Officer who warns Olivia that science has already gone too far to be controlled.

I, for one, am looking forward to the next episode.  This show has definitely earned a spot on the DVR this season.  Let’s just hope Fox doesn’t screw it up.

If you missed the premiere episode, Fox is re-airing it on Sunday, Sept. 14 at 8 p.m. or you can watch it online at Fox.com.

Anyone else catch this premiere? What did you think? Does the show have potential? What was your favorite part?

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Related Posts

What Drives Fringe’s Agent Olivia Dunham in ‘The Cure’?

John Scott Returns to Guide Fringe’s Olivia in ‘Power Hungry’

‘The Arrival’ of the Observer Brings New Mysteries on Fringe

What is the Mystery Behind Fringe’s Peter Bishop?

Is Nina Fringe’s Cigarette Smoking Man?


Footage of New X-Files Movie Leaked

February 25, 2008

The new X-Files movie, due in theaters on July 25, might not have a title yet, but a teaser of footage from the movie was shown to fans this past weekend at WonderCon in San Francisco.

Here’s a look at the footage.

Even after watching the teaser several times, I’m no closer to guessing what the plot will be of the X-Files sequel.  And apparently Chris Carter provided no revelations in his interview with SciFi Wire.

Mulder and ScullyInstead he reiterated that the film is a stand alone story that will not pick up where the last movie let off.  From the teaser, we know that Billy Connolly has joined the cast as a guy with really long hair and that Amanda Peet is an FBI agent who according to Carter has “gone missing.”

Carter does added that the movie will reflect the passage of time.  Apparently Fox Mulder (David Duchovany) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) have changed since when last saw them in 2002.

“The truth is, after all that time, Mulder and Scully were different people, and we were different people, so the ‘X-File’ we came up with five years ago is still the X-File in the movie, but their personal lives – the state of their relationship, all those things – have changed over time, and that was kind of interesting,” Producer/Writer Frank Spotnitz said.

Scully and MulderI’m glad to see that Carter and Spotnitz are acknowledging the passing of time. 

While I’ve been monitoring the progress of the movie, I haven’t really been excited about it yet.  Six years is a long time to have been without X-Files.

But after watching the teaser, I’m ready to break out the DVD of the last movie and rent some of the series.  The countdown to July has begun.


My Top 15 Cult Shows

July 3, 2007

On Friday, TVguide.com released an updated list of its Top 30 Cult Shows ever.  In honor of the list, I’ve compiled my own Top 15 cult shows — these are the top cult shows that I’ve personally flipped out for.

I didn’t feel like I could include LostHeroes or Bones on this list because they seemed too mainstream for me. 

Here’s my Top 15 list:

15. Star Trek — I grew up on the original series.  Scotty was always my favorite character.  I’ve seen all the subsequent series and all the movies. 

14.  Torchwood — Who doesn’t love Captain Jack Harkness?  I was so happy when they gave him his own series.

13.  Doctor Who — I don’t remember the older versions of this franchise, but the latest rendition is absolutely great.

12.  Psych — Dule Hill and James Roday keep me in stitches with their fake psychic business and buddy friendship.

11.  Monk — The escapades of USA’s favorite obsessive-compulsive detective are enough to make anyone feel normal by comparison.

10. Quantum Leap — I had a little crush on Scott Bakula and wouldn’t miss an episode of his time traveling adventures.

9.  Friday Night Lights — You don’t have to love football to fall for the witty dialogue and great stories in this drama.

8.  How I Met Your Mother — One word.  Barney.  He makes this show.

7.  Eureka — You’ve just got to love this quirky little town of the brightest minds.

6.  Battlestar Galactica — I barely remember the original, but the current version has me on the edge of my seat.

5.  X-Files — My husband introduced this series to me when we were dating.  We spent many Friday nights during our courtship curled up on the couch watch Scully and Mulder unravel a case.  For that reason, this series will always have a special place in my heart. 

4.  Firefly — Joss Whedon has me begging for more exploits of Mal and the crew of the Serenity.  A single season of this space cowboy adventure was not enough.  Thank goodness for the movie and the comics. 

3.  Buffy the Vampire Slayer — Joss Whedon’s original television series kept me hooked all seven seasons and further if you count the comics.   I loved to tune in each week to watch Buffy and the Scooby Gang save the world.

2.  Angel — David Boreanaz is very easy on the eyes.  I loved to watch the brooding vampire with a soul team up with Cordelia, Wes, Gunn and others to save the innocent.  I even have the puppet Angel from “Smile Time.”

1.  Supernatural — Currently my favorite show, I love to watch the good-looking brothers Dean (Jensen Ackles) and Sam (Jared Padelecki) battle urban legends and things that go bump in the night while driving the beautiful 1967 black Chevy Impala. 

So now it’s your turn.  What’s on your list?


Will There be an X-Files Sequel?

April 6, 2007

Rumors have floated around for years about whether there would finally be a sequel to the X-Files Movie.  The truth is out there.

X-Files Fight the FutureAccording to World Entertainment News Network, David Duchovny has confirmed that both he and Gillian Anderson will star in a sequel to  the 1998 movie.

Duchovny portrayed FBI agent Fox Mulder, and Anderson his partner DanaScully, in the original movie and the cult favorite series on Fox.

As to what the movie will be about, Duchovny says:

“Chris [Carter] and Frank [Spotnitz] are going over the story. It’s a story they’ve had for a few years but we haven’t all settled on the fact that we wanted to do it, so now they’re hammering it out.”

Fans are speculating as to whether the sequel will finally provide some long-awaited answers.  In an interview with Empire Magazine, Anderson suggested the new movie would be a stand alone story, in part to attract more than the die hard fan.

I suggest we “trust no one” until we see the trailer.  With luck we won’t have to wait too long.