So here we are, drawing either too quickly or not quickly enough (depending on which second you ask) towards the beginning of the end.
What an incredible ride it’s been.
Thinking back on my own experiences over the last few years, just trying to figure out how to express how proud I am of Fringe and its mighty fandom, I’m all goosebumpy again. We’ve done so many amazing things. We searched for Peter Bishop in every corner of the globe. We defied security and raised our White Tulips at Comic Con. We created our own awards when the show wasn’t receiving the official recognition we felt it deserved. We made fan videos, and hashtag campaigns, and a Twitter bot, and most importantly, friends. So many good friends we had our own convention, and those who couldn’t make it were with us in spirit.
Fringe started out as “just” a great show. We watched every week, chatting excitedly in a hundred separate communities about each episode. But then ratings began to decline, and when they did there were uneasy mutterings. As the numbers continued to fall, the muttering turned into a rumbling, like thunder heard from the universe next door. The sound grew louder, the ripples got wider, the voices rose and merged until they felt a lot like this:
Only it wasn’t “the voice of Yes; the voice of White; the voice of Always,” it was the voice of NO; the voice of Not this time; the voice of Not our show.¹
So we fought. We rallied and tweeted and posted and improvised and surprised ourselves with what we turned out to be capable of. We drew a map that others are now following, carving brand new pathways out of the dusty old stone of traditional sampling methods. And we won. We’ve won that rarest of gifts, a real and thoughtful ending to the story we love so much. So many shows don’t get that. Most of them don’t.
My greatest hope is that maybe we’ve begun to change that. Maybe the doors we opened will stay ajar, and networks will work a little harder to find new ways of tracking viewership. It would be a noble legacy, and Fringe deserves nothing less. But legacy or no, the thing I’m proudest of is that single unified voice, because in a way it did turn out to be the voice of Yes. It was thousands of voices raised into a single harmonic blast of hope that’s still reverberating off the walls of the internet.
I’m so proud of that. So very proud of us.²
I’m doing that florid thing again, but I won’t apologize because you guys know; it’s Fringe. I will get to the point however, because believe it or not there is one beyond “Fringies and Fringe are awesome!!!”
Ari if you’re reading, you should stop now. These are not the fans you’re looking for. Move along. ;p
The point of this overly emotional recap is that we have one final ³ spectacular mission for you. We’ve set the bar incredibly high, but Fringe and its creators deserve nothing less from us than one last grand gesture. We’re going out in a blaze of glory, completing our journey into the history books in a manner befitting our fandom and our show. And if you missed the Blue Moon Awards, you really want to get in on this.
We’re doing it again. Not awards exactly, more like parting gifts. Only this time, we want to send every single person involved in the making of Fringe home with something tangible to hold onto, to remind them that once, they worked on a hell of a show, and the work they did changed the lives of millions of people.
Introducing, Operation Ambergram (working title I just now made up). It goes like this:
Once again the major players will be receiving “award” style thank you gifts. These will be an engraved slab of “amber” (not really, but it it looks very like it. Turns out real amber is expensive, which makes sense I guess ’cause it’s millions of years old.) Engraved on the slabs will be the white tulip symbol and a message of thanks, something like this:
However this time, every current crew member, and as many past crew members as we can find, will also be receiving a small gift. We’re not sure yet what that’ll be – we need to get a couple of different product quotes first – but each one will be accompanied by a card thanking them for everything they’ve given us over the last five years.
We still have some stuff to figure out. We need quotes, and a crowdsourced funding solution, and we need to figure out what exactly will be engraved on the slabs, and printed on the cards. But we wanted to get the word out now because we’re on a tight timeline here – we want to have them delivered before filming ends (don’tthinkaboutitdon’tthinkaboutit) in November and everyone scatters to the four winds.
Our current list of “amber” recipients includes:
Joshua Jackson, John Noble, Anna Torv, Jasika Nicole, Blair Brown, Lance Reddick, Seth Gabel, Georgina Haig, Joel Wyman, Jeff Pinkner, Ari Margolis, Michael Cerveris, Chris Tilton, Kirk Acevedo, Akiva Goldsman, Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, J.J. Abrams, Leonard Nimoy, and Bart Montgomery.
It may seem odd at first to use amber as a medium for our final gift given its context in the show. We looked at lots of different ideas for this project, and settled on amber for a few different reasons:
- Things trapped in Amber will always remain as they are, never fading – like our memories of Fringe and these wonderful years we’ve spent together.
- Amber has a long history of use in many cultures for it’s reputed healing properties. It also appears in a number or myths as the hardened tears of various gods. We’ll all have tears, and need some healing come January.
- The ancient Greeks noticed that amber attracted small objects when rubbed with fur. Both electron and electricity are derived from the Latin ēlectrum, which in turn came from the Greek word for amber, ήλεκτρον (ēlektron).
- And my personal favorite: between the two of them, the white tulip and the amber have become symbols of Fringe’s greatest hope and its greatest despair. Combining the two is an elegant reminder that even after the show’s final episode, it’s always up to us to choose which we believe in. Fringe taught us that.
That’s the gist of it. We’ll keep you updated with more information as we get it, and we’ll try and have donations open by the end of the week. We’ll be brainstorming on what these things should say and probably be putting up a poll or two, so watch this space. We’ll most likely be accepting letters and artwork again if you guys want to send them, although @runpaceyrun is currently in Vancouver collecting some of those things already, and I know of at least one other group doing the same. As with the BMA’s, any leftover funds will go to charity; we have a few candidates we’re discussing, including support of the arts (Josh’s preference), Autism (because the BMA donation was teeny), and Alzheimer’s research (because of the whole memory theme, and its heartbreakingly accurate depiction in And Those We’ve Left Behind). If we raise enough we might split the difference, so be as generous as you can. As always, we welcome comments or questions, just poke a Fringenuity member on Twitter.
It has been the honor of a lifetime to know you guys, and to work with every one of you. Let’s be magnificent one more time.