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Blu-ray Review

DVD cover

The Complete Third Season


Starring: Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, John Noble and Jasika Nicole
Warner Home Video
RRP: £59.99
Certificate: 15
Available 26 September 2011

The Fringe Division are back and using further unconventional FBI and 'fringe' science methods to investigate mysterious and horrifying incidences that threaten the safety of the United States. Season three plunges further down the rabbit-hole as we rejoin our three unlikely partners - FBI Agent Olivia Dunham, the brilliant but damaged scientist Walter Bishop, and his jack-of-all-trades son Peter on mind-bending investigations, battling threats lurking at the border between science and science fiction...

The third season of Fringe follows a number of story arcs. These arcs neatly tie together the fringe-event-of-the-week style episodes that see individuals from our world, or a parallel universe, committing bizarre criminal acts or being effected by things from another universe. For example The Plateau deals with a man who is able to accurately predict the most unlikely of events, to the point where he can easily effect the outcome of any situation by making a very small alteration; Marionette sees someone driven to steeling people's body parts for reasons unknown; Immortality sees a man using strangers bodies to incubate bugs, which then eat their victim inside out; and 6B in which the Fringe Division investigate the residents of a block of flats who are experiencing strange phenomenon, with one resident being visited by the ghost of her recently deceased husband.

The main story arc revolves around a mysterious machine that has lain hidden from mankind, and actually predates homo sapiens appearance on our planet. Both universes are engaged in a race to work out how to construct and work the device.

This season includes another engaging back story episode (Subject 13) which explores in a little more depth Peter's early years in our universe.

There's also an interesting segment in the episode Lysergic Acid Diethylamide. Here the producers have included an animated segment (which was actually designed to allow Leonard Nimoy to appear (voice only) in the show once again after his retirement.

Notable guest stars include Christopher Lloyd (Back to the Future), Alan Ruck (Ferris Bueller's Day Off) and Brad Dourif who all make one-off appearances.

Extras include audio commentaries on a few episodes; and Maximum Episode Mode: Glimmer to the Other Side (picture in picture featurette that runs during the episode Os. Under the Duality of Worlds banner we have two features: The Other You (9 min, 04 sec look at all the different reality versions of the main characters); A Machine of Destiny (4 min, 16 sec look at the machine that features in this series); and The Psychology of Duality (8 min, 31 sec). We also get Constructing an Extra-Sensory Soundscape (7 min, 08 sec look at the music and sound effects in the show); Secrets of Fringe: The First People (2 min, 04 sec); Gag Reel (3 min, 13 sec); Animating the Lysergic Acid Diethylamide episode (7 min, 33 sec look at the animated segments in that episode); and Network Promos for three episodes.

While the acting can't be faulted across the board, a special mention has to go out to John Noble as Walter who pulls of incredible performances as the two very different Walters.

Fringe is an entertaining enough series, but it's one that I can take or leave. While I did enjoy the show, I doubt I'd be rushing out to buy this box set to add to my collection if I hadn't been given it for review.


Nick Smithson

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