No, I will continue to call them as I see them – and just like Dollhouse, Fringe should not have been renewed. Now of course Fox and WB think differently, and maybe they have the numbers to prove it. But I think Fox will be just as disappointed with Fringe’s performance next season as it was with Dollhouse.
Maybe they’ll break even on the money, maybe they won’t. But in any case, in my view they punted on getting MORE revenue by replacing Fringe with something else that virtually certainly would do better regardless of the licensing fee.
Worse, this sets a stupid precedent. Dollhouse couldn’t be syndicated, but with Fringe, now every low-rated show can claim that if it gets another 13 episodes, even if it already meets the “stripped”
syndication number of episodes, it can get a higher syndication fee. Well, if that’s true, then why not try to get Fringe yet ANOTHER season after the next one? If every additional episode means the studio gets more revenue, they can just keep on offering the show for a low fee.
It makes no sense to me that the networks buy into this, because of opportunity costs. But if you’re going to buy into it for one more season, why not for yet another season? The end result is more networks will let more low-rated shows hang around for another season so they can avoid the cost of developing new shows to replace them.
It’s a classic case of cutting off your nose to spite your face. Instead of getting new, potentially more interesting shows, we’ll be stuck with “end of life” shows for longer. Really, I can’t see Fringe doing anything significant in their next 13 episodes.
This season has been a near total loss and I don’t see any way forward that makes things better unless they jettison most of what they’ve done this past season (and indeed much of season three.)
Like TSCC in season two, Fringe lost its way in season three and season four just proved it. I can’t see a short season five improving that. But really my main complaint is that having given in on a season five, we’re going to have to hear the fanatical fans clamoring for a season SIX here all next year.
And since the argument for season five seems to apply equally to a season six, they will be even more impossible to reason with.
The fact is that the fans all this year were LOGICALLY WRONG! There was no LOGICAL reason to renew Fringe! The fact that it WAS renewed does not change that.
So, no, I’m not changing my attitude one whit.