{2jtab: Movie Review}

Fringe - Complete Fifth Season Blu-ray Review


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4 stars

Saying goodbye is a hard thing to do.  Given that most television dramas overstay their welcome and most science fiction shows never get the chance to say hello, the fifth and final season of Fringe is one lucky dog.  Fox essentially allowed this show - with a cut budget mind you - to wrap up some of its loose ends and come to a rest on the front porch.  With only a handful of episodes, Fringe – created by J.J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci – comes to a conclusion.  Fringe is pretty much best described as X-Files: The Next Generation.  Starring John Noble, Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, and Jasika Nicole, Fringe – almost from Day One – was always on Fox’s Friday night chopping block.  It managed to survive through smart scripts and ravenous core of followers.  Here – in its final season – the show rewards its viewers with a 13-episode arc that brings everything to a close.

Fringe began with the release of Dr. Bishop (Noble), who had previously gone insane and was institutionalized for over a decade, into the care of FBI agent Olivia Dunham (Torv) and his estranged son Peter (Jackson).  They need him to help investigate strange happenings that have left others in disbelief.  Of course, there is a larger backstory at work here and – while we had glimpses of the future events in Season Four – Fringe, in Season Five, spends all of its time fighting the future.  And it isn’t pretty.

The full 13 episodes for Fringe: The Complete Fifth and Final Season are included in the release. They are listed below:

Episode 1 : “Transilience Thought Unifier Model-11“

Episode 2 : “In Absenstia“

Episode 3 : “The Recordist“

Episode 4 : “The Bullet That Saved the World“

Episode 5 : “An Origin Story“

Episode 6 : “Through the Looking Glass and What Walter Found There“

Episode 7 : “Five Twenty-Ten“

Episode 8 : “The Human Kind“

Episode 9 : “Black Blotter“

Episode 10 : “Anomaly XB-6783746“

Episode 11 : “The Boy Must Live“

Episode 12 : “Liberty“

Episode 13 : “An Enemy of Fate“

From the titles alone one can tell that this season is a rollercoaster of emotions as our team fights against the world takeover of The Observers.  Yes, those mysterious men in gray suits and bald heads – there at every important event in history – have finally taken over and it is up to Walter, Olivia, Peter, Astrid and Etta (Georgina Haig) to stop them.

Okay, so – in order to get us to the future – Fringe jumps into the future and totally re-designs the look and feel of the show.  Gone are the “Monster of the Week” episodes.  We’ve a future to fight against and that’s what Season Five does in its brief 13-episode arc.  The science fiction moments remain; however, and viewers are rewarded with nods to past episodes as the Fringe team must cause Fringe-like encounters to happen in order to bring about a reality without The Observers.  There’s a lot of fighting this season and a lot of tears.

Essentially, Fringe's final season is a prolonged three or four episode narrative.  Some of the final episodes are paper-thin and stretched out in a manner that "pads" the jump into the future with new characters (Etta being a sort of wasted attempt at a character) and more background information on the past 40 years or so.  This becomes problematic only its design.  There's still a nice momentum to the happenings - even if some of the more dramatic moments and tension (the hunt for videotapes bordering on ridiculous) become hit or miss.  Some love what Fringe did with this final season and some don't.  For me, this is almost perfect science finction.  Almost.

You’ve got questions.  Fringe and showrunner J.H. Wyman have the answers.

{2jtab: Film Details}

Fringe - Complete Fifth Season Blu-ray ReviewMPAA Rating: TV-14.
: J.J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci
: J.J. Abrams; Bryan Burk
Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, Jasika Nicole
: TV | Drama | Mystery | Sci-Fi |
Imagine the Impossibilities
Memorable Movie Quote:
"You're right, they are in amber."
Fox Network
Official Site:
Season Premier Date: September 9, 2008
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
May 7, 2013

Synopsis: A television drama centered around a female FBI agent who is forced to work with an institutionalized scientist in order to rationalize a brewing storm of unexplained phenomena.

{2jtab: Blu-ray Review}

Fringe - Complete Fifth Season Blu-ray Review

Component Grades

Blu-ray Disc
4 stars

4 stars

Blu-ray Experience
4 stars


Blu-ray Details:

Available on Blu-ray - May 7, 2013
Screen Formats: 1.78:1
: English SDH, French, Spanish
Audio: English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Discs: 50GB Blu-ray Disc; Three-disc set (3 BDs); UV digital copy; Digital copy
Region Encoding: A

Presented in 1080p with a ripe AVC MPEG-4 transfer from Warner Bros, most anyone with good eyesight will notice the impeccable amount of detail and obvious lack of film grain.  In a cost preventative measure, the show has moved away from film and goes digital all the way.  There’s a tiny bit of digital noise visible from time to time but nothing too significant. The black level here is very solid, the color palette is vibrant although a tad bit subdued this season to fit the visual style and fleshtones for the most part are accurate in comparison to the previous seasons of the show. The special effects this season seemed to have taken a slight budget cut but they still manage to come across pretty believable. Audio Quality on this release is in DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio.



  • Found on Disc Two, the episode entitled “Black Blotter” has an audio commentary from Executive Producer J.H. Wyman and Editor Jon Dudkowski.

Special Features:

Overall, the bonus materials prove to be worthwhile and somewhat lengthy clocking in at over 90 minutes of material.  It’s nice to see they took the time to give it some good bonus content.  Disc One includes a deleted scene only.  Disc Two contains the audio commentary on “Black Blotter”.  Disc Three is where most of the material appears.  There’s a 20-minute farewell that includes interviews from cast and crew.  This is a fairly emotional featurette as it is obvious that the cast and crew love the show.  A full script is also available.  There’s a Gag Reel and more deleted scenes, too.  UltraViolet digital copies of all thirteen episodes in the fifth season are included. This can be redeemed via the URL and code included on the paper insert.

  • Behind the Story: Walter‘s Brain – Dissected Files (1 min)
  • Special Feature: A Farewell to Fringe (21 min)
  • Behind the Story: Observer in the Closet – Dissected Files (1 min)
  • Fringe Season 5 2012 Comic-Con Panel (29 min)
  • Gag Reel (2 min)
  • An Enemy of Fate Digital Script

{2jtab: Trailer}