‘Fringe’ Ratings Up; Producer Calls Season 4 Renewal ‘Gutsy’

Published 3 years ago by , Updated May 12th, 2011 at 3:24 am,

fringe cast ratings renewal Fringe Ratings Up; Producer Calls Season 4 Renewal Gutsy

After surprising news last week that Fringe had been renewed, ratings jumped considerably for Friday’s new episode “Bloodline.”

Viewership for Fringe increased 50,000 viewers for a 3.85 million total. Demographic viewers were up as well, with 1.5 million falling in the 18-49 demographic. Just like last week, Fringe aired head-to-head against the NCAA basketball playoffs on CBS.

While the numbers aren’t great (and a far cry from the show’s scores before the move to Friday nights), the increase should be a clear sign to Fox higher-ups that they made the right decision.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, executive producers Jeff Pinker and J. H. Wyman applauded Fox’s decision.

Wyman had this to say of the renewal:

They’re saying, “Hey, we believe in this program and we want to be the purveyor of programs that are critically acclaimed and purveyor of programs that people are really responding to and really embracing,” which sounds obvious but there’s a lot of critically acclaimed shows that have gone by the wayside in the past. There’s something to be said about that decision. It’s gutsy.

The pair also spoke on the evolution of DVR viewers, acknowledging that a large part of Fringe‘s viewership doesn’t watch the show live. This is part of a fundamental shift in the way that people watch television, and part of the reason that antiquated systems like the Nielson ratings may need some updating. Said Pinkner, “…our outcome goal is to tell stories that people connect with. We don’t wake up and look at the numbers as an objective thing.”

Wyman took time to thank Fox entertainment chief Kevin Reilly for his support of Fringe. Apparently the communication between Fox and the show’s creators and actors has been nothing but frank. He also mentioned a groundswell of support from fans and press alike. Pinkner likened it to a famous Oscar acceptance speech: “It’s the Sally Field moment: ‘They like me!’”

fringe fox Fringe Ratings Up; Producer Calls Season 4 Renewal Gutsy

Wyman also let out some juicy details on the current season’s finale. The producer said that they always try to set up a story for the next season as they’re ending the current one, a statement that holds true for previous seasons of Fringe. The takeaway? Season 3′s last episode won’t be a half-hearted stand-in for a series finale – expect a nail-biting cliffhanger.

While it’ll be a couple of months before the writing of Fringe Season 4 begins, Pinkner assures fans that there’s an overall framework for the series in place. With a full order of 22 episodes, they’ll have plenty of time to flesh it out.

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Fringe airs Friday nights @9PM on Fox.

Follow Michael on Twitter: @MichaelCrider

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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  1. “While it’ll be a couple of months before the writing of Fringe Season 4 begins, Pinkner assures fans that there’s an overall framework for the series in place. With a full order of 22 episodes, they’ll have plenty of time to flesh it out.”

    I assumed with them barely skating into another season, that they would try to wrap up the story before the show gets cancelled. Is this comment the first (almost) confirmation that they are planning to make S4 the last?

  2. Well talking about the decision as gutsy! I would say putting Fringe on Fridays was the gutsy one! Seeing the fans following the series to the death slot is what’s keeping Fringe alive!

    I fear though that season 4 sounds like our last :( Hopefully we are all wrong and we will get Fringe for more time! It also depends on what happens to the current main subject. If they don’t have anything up their sleves besides the Peter machine stuff I guess season 4 as final will be fine.

  3. This is our favorite show BY FAR, and we ALWAYS time shift and watch it later using our DVR – please do not even think about canceling this awesome program!

    • Totally agree with you!

  4. This by far, is the very best TV show, since the best TV show ever, The X-Files ended it’s run. I can see Fringe being on not for just a fourth season, bu and run maybe equaled to The X-Files’s 9 year run. Now, if we can just convince the makers of Fringe and Fox, to have a short storyarc of say, 4 Episodes or so with two other guest starting F.B.I. Special Agents of Mulder & Scully to help the Fringe gang help solve a series of Murders they used to be flagged as an X-File. Maybe even have another guest start for a two episode storyarc, with the appearance of the greatest F.B.I Profiler, Frank Black. Boy, I’d love to see Frank Black’s evil Nemesis…Lucy Butler in a all out cat fight with Olivia Dunham. There could be so many different stories, they could go on forever, and I believe this would be a great way to reintroduce Mulder & Scully and bringing them alone with Millennium back onto a weekly show. Fox can do it, being all these shows are under the control of Fox. Mmnn! ell, things just might happen just when you think to yourself, no way they would happen, but, being the Third X-Files movie with the return of the Alien Story-arc that ran through out the show, and the Alien Invasion on December 21, 2012, will make Mulder & Scully household names again, any thing can happen. Remember Fringe/The X-Files fans….The Truth is Out There!

  5. I think FRINGE is a TV Show that is very close to reality if you see it from a scientific point of view (some things are extremely absurd and fake) but the environment, some scientific fact mixed with fantasy, makes this show worth watching. There are no super powers and super heroes, just simple humans trying to solve a problem using science. That is a great stuff. I hope FRINGE lives many seasons more. If S4 will be the final one, I will be sad, but proud to wasted 4 years of my life watching this show. Lets hope this will not the last.

  6. I am so happy Fringe is renewed. It is the best show on Fox, and the best sci fi show around. Fringe is far better than X Files. I care about the characters. I hope this makes a 5th season and more. Today’s science fiction is tomorrow’s science fact. Fringe rocks!

    • Fringe better than The X-Files? It’s not even close. Fringe has a long way to go to become half the show the X-Files was. The X-Files, had far better written episodes, that developed over years of excitement. As far as the characters, the only Fringe character that I really like is Walter. If any of the rest were to be killed off, so be it. The Show would go on, but if either Fox or Dana were killed off, the show would’ve had to end. And, the science if far more believeable on the X-Files than on Fringe. Another Dimension, please! But, an Alien Civilization is reality, as in everything The X-Files was as a show. It’s only because of the X-Files, that Fringe was ever put together in the first place. Fringe is just a second hand copy of the Greatest Sci-Fi show ever to come along, always remember, the Truth is out there!

      • Are you nuts? X-files was nothing compared to Fringe.
        X-files started out good but became 80% filler episodes. Remember all the stupid episodes that went nowhere and had no plot line?

        Remember the episode with Mulder throwing spit wads at the ceiling. Ya great writing!

        The last season was the worst. They wrapped NOTHING up and it ended horribly.

  7. The ending of S3 was rough, I really like the show and was hoping it would be back. I like all the characters and really hope to see Peter return. All of them play a key part in bringing the show together. I really hope to see it come back every season, It is a great Sci-Fi. I know ratings get confused because of the DVR, but now days its really the way of life. I hope this is taken more in consideration when they start to cancel the good shows. Fringe is one of my top 3 weekly recordings.

  8. Fringe is by far the best TV show at the moment… with giants such as Lost and 24 gone, there has been nothing that could approach those shows that has any real power as a series (except The Sarah Connor chronicles which was killed by Kevin reilly and the deathslot)

    Fringe fills that (worm)hole like a huge injection of amber. There just isnt a show that comes close to it- I just hope that the writers and Fox give it a fair chance to either expand more or end a little more satisfactorily in season 4.

  9. I love Fringe!! I can’t believe they are only doing four Seasons :( before Fringe, LOST was my favorite show. I’m actually still torn between the two but Fringe is definitely more suspenseful and mysteriously realistic! I love the characters of Fringe and their unique personalities, it makes for a show that evokes emotion in the watcher when something bad happens to a character. I just love Peter!