Friday, September 30, 2011

Like banging my head on a brick wall.

I'm a big fan of the show "Fringe". I've seen every episode but one (and that by choice; it was too scary, and that's saying a lot) at least once. After every episode, I get online to find out what the glyph code said and where the Observer was, and what the hints for the next episodes might mean. I also enjoy the complicated nature of the plot -- there are two universes, which means two versions of nearly every character and all kinds of back-and-forth. They also added a time-travel element at the end of last season, and literally erased a main character from the story. (He's pretty obviously coming back, though.) In other words, to really enjoy the show, you have to be quick on the uptake and you have to really pay attention while you watch.

And yet I've seen multiple cases of people complaining that they didn't know what was going on. In itself, that's not so bad -- if you came in halfway through last season, for instance, it would be incredibly confusing. But this isn't the same thing. One woman didn't realize the difference between "Lincoln Lee wears glasses now?" and "Oh, that's Lincoln Lee from this universe". Another seemed to have turned off the last season's finale after about 30 minutes, and wanted to know why Peter wasn't there -- he/she seemed to think Joshua Jackson had left the show, and he/she demanded the showrunners get him back pronto.

I bring this up because these people claim to be faithful watchers with viewing habits that match mine, and yet it's painfully obvious that they're completely at sea. I don't get it. Either they're lying (in which case, why not just say you came in late?) or they're actually, you know, dumb as a bag of hammers when it comes to following the show (in which case, why are they watching "Fringe"?). (And I don't mean they're necessarily objectively stupid, I mean they're just out of their element for whatever reason. It happens.) It's a puzzler, all right.

(Don't even get me started on the "I know I only half-watched the show while I did something else, but [plot hole] really bugged the heck out of me!" There was no plot hole. You just suck at watching TV. Argh argh argh argh argh.

No comments: