Fringe alum says series became a 'boy show' that lost focus on female heroes

Contributed by
Jan 18, 2016, 3:05 PM EST

When it launched, Fox’s Fringe was about a female FBI agent and a father-son duo helping her solve crimes — and grew into so much more than that over the next few years. But, one former star isn’t entirely psyched about what the cult hit eventually became.

While speaking at the Television Critics Association winter press tour, Blair Brown, who played Massive Dynamic COO Nina Sharp on the series, told TV Line she believes the show eventually evolved into a “boy show,” which lost focus on Agent Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv). Brown raises a complicated point about how the direction of a show can change over the years, though her thesis might be a bit more nuanced than she’s giving it credit for.

Here’s an excerpt from her comments:

“I loved my time on Fringe, but the truth is that was originally a story about a female protagonist… and the show turned into a story about father and son [played by John Noble and Joshua Jackson]. Very often in this business, that’s what tends to happen… A lot of the time, those boy shows, it’s not that there’s anything against women, they just don’t know how to write women, so they go right back to [the trope of Steven] Spielberg, father-son — and there are mothers and sons, and mothers and daughters.” 

Again, it’s a complicated point. Part of the focus for Fringe did definitely shift toward the father-son dynamic over the years (not to mention the relationship between Olivia and Peter), though Olivia remained an important character in the narrative — often times the most important character, with a good bit of the action scenes across the board. 

What do you think? Is Brown reading too much into this, or did she hit the nail on the head?


(Via TV Line)