Joshua Jackson: 'Start the campaign' to save 'Fringe'

Joshua-JacksonImage Credit: Liane Hentscher/FoxFans wondering about the fate of Fringe are not alone. Star Joshua Jackson is watching the ratings along with the rest of us.

“I’m a positive person in general, but we really need our Fringe fans to tune in and watch us on Fridays,” Jackson tells EW. “We did good when we first moved, but last week we did not have a good week, ratings wise. It is going to take the people that like the show to watch the show and start the campaign and show their support if they want to see us stick around for another season.”

Meanwhile, more data has come in about those ratings from last Friday: The episode’s adult demo climbed 57 percent over the next three days thanks to DVR playback. That’s a lot, and higher than the previous Friday’s Fringe DVR gain, suggesting that more fans are electing to watch the show over the weekend (not enough, however, to change the overall story — numbers still fell when comparing week to week). Still, the data reinforces Jackson’s point: Fans need to watch the show on Fridays.

As for what comes next on the show, Jackson gave us more reasons to tune in …

“Apparently I’m gonna be a dad,” he says. “And it is like the most extreme long-distance relationship, which I am pretty good at as it turns out in real life. My baby mama is in another universe. I think he has to find out, but I don’t know exactly how we’re gonna work that out yet. I have not see the finale script yet or anything. The whole other universe thing and the machine and the war of the two worlds is obviously the end of this season. But you would think they can’t just let the baby thing fall away.”

Jackson also noted the show has gotten “very Romeo and Juliet-ish in” the last couple of weeks but says the show “will go back to some straight Fringeiness very soon.”

“We have been exploring our feelings a lot lately,” he says. “I feel sort of bad for fans of the relationship. The Peter-Olivia supporters have been taken for quite a ride. He wants to be with her, and in his mind it was her. But in her mind, he should have been able to tell the difference. But we get back to some cold hard out-there science stuff soon enough.”

We’re ready for more Fringeiness! Check back on Saturday mornings to see the latest Fringe ratings.

With reporting from Carrie Bell

Comments (209 total) Add your comment
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  • Aimee

    The campaign to Save Fringe has been in place for a long time, and it high-gear when the Friday move was announced. Joshua needs to see the Fringe Network online.

    • Aimee

      savefringe dot com

      • whereisit

        Since I am not one of the ten idiots with a nielsen box, I will continue to DVR it.

      • JAM

        I’ll keep watching on Hulu, I’ve been cable free for close to 2 years

      • TQB

        Thanks for the URL! Going there ASAP!

      • Dan

        what where said. Why Nielson, which notoriously no offense literally installs their boxes on 10 old people’s t.v. sets in New Mexico, California, Nevada and Ohio, is allowed to continue to drive ratings is beyond me. And Hulu should play a much larger role than it currently does in network’s calculus. As someone who watches it, trust me, we have to sit through commercials on it. DVR should count as well, but that’s harder because then they can argue you’re fast-forwarding through the ads.

      • Dicazi

        Dan, I meet some of your criteria. I’m in my 50s and live in Ohio.
        I don’t have a Nielsen box and don’t know anyone that does, but I LOVE Fringe.

      • DotDotDot

        Less than .02% of tv viewers have a Nielsen box. That means 99.98% of us don’t count. That’s a problem. They really don’t know how many people are actually watching. Hulu should definitely matter…we are a captive audience, as you can’t forward through commercials on Hulu. I am sure cable & satellite companies can tell exactly what we are watching, so why is that data not being used instead of Nielsen? Why is it that only us the viewers are screaming for some kind of change in how ratings are established? I suppose it’s because we keep watching, and our shows keep getting canceled because nobody knows we are here.

    • Sharlin

      Nielsen is such an outdated system to judge a shows popularity. With the internet and DVR… that HAS to have a bigger impact. Just like itunes and internet downloads changed how music is judged on the Hot 100 and Billboard 200.

      • laura

        Dear Sharlin, Nielsen measures how many people are estimated to be watching the commercials, because they PAY THE BILLS. Watching online is for crap because there are no ads and no revenue for the show. Using a DVR is for crap because almost everyone skips the ads. It doesn’t matter if 20 million people watch the actual show if, they must be calculated as watching the ads too. That mostly means LIVE VIEWERS, and it makes perfect sense. Ads pay the bills. Obviously this must be repeated because you don’t understand it.

      • whereisit

        and the people with nielsen boxes watch crap shows like Glee and Dnacing with the out of work stars.

      • Hen

        It’s not about popularity. It’s about you watching those ads.

      • Brigid

        Well, there are online ads. Granted, doesn’t generate as much revenue, but it exists.
        And Nielsen IS an outdated system, since only 10,000 households in the US have them. So it honestly doesn’t matter when I watch Fringe. Personally, I think it’s better for me to watch it online- maybe SOMEone’s counting video plays.

      • Brian

        Then they should just put all the ads that would’ve aired during the show in it’s normal timeslot (minus time-sensitive ads) into the online streaming version. That way the online counts as much as the Nielson and the ads still get seen. I’d watch extra ads online if it meant continuing the show.

      • Heather

        Who watches TV live anymore? Doesn’t almost everyone have a DVR? Even in the days of VCRs people skipped the commercials.

      • Pete

        Nobody in the industry believe your assessment of it being “crap” – when they check with other areas where they can measure, dvd sales, itunes sales, online streaming – even piracy sometimes – the trends always seem to be the same; popular shows are popular all over, low rated shows are not. Ie, the numbers seem to reflect reality.

      • PixxieTrixxie

        And On Demand makes you watch the commercials now also so I hope they are counting us as viewers.

      • chris

        i’ve got news for you. when i DO watch a show live, i don’t sit there and watch the commercials. i hit mute and pull out the laptop, or talk to my wife, get a sandwich or go the bathroom. in fact, i watch more ads when i watch online because they are only 15-30 seconds long and then it’s back to the show. when they give me 2-5 minutes worth right in a row, i’m tuning out for that time.

      • Dan

        Nielson is ridiculous. You guys are owning that argument. You’re not actually sitting there and watching the commercials anyway. And they know that. The networks are just too lazy to adopt to the 21st century. It’s still 1989 in their minds. And there are mandatory commercials on Hulu. Frankly I watch those more because at least they’re mildly entertaining and they often give you a choice which one you want to watch.

      • Dicazi

        DVR’s are only in like 35% of US homes.

      • Melissa

        What @Chris said.

      • DotDotDot

        Laura, there most certainly are commercials when you watch online. It should count. The industry is just being slow to catch up with how people watch shows.

      • WalterBishop

        @laura, maybe someone who thinks they are so smart would know that online viewing does have ads. what a know-it-all moron you are.

      • lostfan

        WOW! Telling people they don’t know anything ratings/ad systems, then FAILING to realize that EVERY network website, and EVERY video on Hulu, has trackable, quantifiable ads, ….even on demand now has ads, but someone still thinks its 1989.

        Sorry folks, I never watched Fringe *ever* ….not because I think its bad, just because I was hung-over from Lost, and was not ready for another mind-bender….but I want to get into on DVD (actually did the same thing with Lost)….Fringe’s problem lies in the same place Arrested Developments problems lied FOX. Unless you are a no talent hack (American Idol) or are Animated (Simpsons/Family Guy/King of the hill) or are Sports….or, you catch the terror wave right after 9/11 (24) fox will kill you FAST! Glee, will not last another 2 years…once the fad wears off it will be gone faster than Herman’s Head! Nielsen is TERRIBLE….someon on here wrote that only 35% of households have DVR, well that is 50x times more than Nielsen boxes! Start rating us! And honestly, I would not be against IN SHOW ads, characters driving Fords, using iphones, refrencing Bing, if it meant less commercials, and more good TV. Sorry folks, Fringe looks like a good show, which means it probably won’t last!

      • ShabbyDoo

        Laura… kinda dumb comment. Also, dumb that even on the Fox site, where I often watch Fringe, they put only one ad on repeatedly. I know many people who watch online, and all of us are mystified that they don’t put more ads on during the program. We’re there… we’re OK with watching the ads to have flexibility in watching our show, but there’s no accountability.
        I mean, everyone doesn’t read magazines at the same time, but advertisers pay to be in them. Why can’t they see that modes of fandom are changing, and adapt to it like we are?!

    • JaySin420

      Enough of the scary Fringe articles, how about doing one on Community? They’re ratings are terrible but everyone pretends its the best show ever.

      • Dave r.

        Their ratings are terrible because Community blows. Unwatchable.

    • Joe

      Fringe is the BEST show on tv, since the X-Files. We have watched it since it first came on. If those idiots at Fox cancel it, their channel will be blocked form my tv. What are they going to show it it’s place move of “American Idiot’s?? And yes I do mean Idiots. That is how much I dispise that show!

      • HC

        and Joe is awesomely right.

    • Dave r.

      This show is going down because it turned into Dawson’s Creek lately.

      The whole thing with Fauxlivia getting knocked up and Walternate showing up “now you’ve got every resource at your disposal, for you have my grandson… Muahahaha!” Gimme a break they should rename the show “As The Universe Turns” and put it on middays for all the fattie housewives.

  • Jen E.

    JJ is one cool cat. I don’t know how Fringe isn’t must-see TV for everyone.

    • Get A Q

      JJ Tends to not finish what he starts. He has awesome ideas but can’t seem to stick to one project.

      • jules

        @Get A Q…I’m pretty sure the JJ Jen E. was referring to is Joshua Jackson, not JJ Abrams.

    • Miffy

      Uh yeah, right – you have a low threshold for “cool”.

      Time for you to start worrying, Joshua Jackson, because your show is getting cancelled, and you’re a Dawson’s Creek castoff who can’t act his way out of a paper bag and has no screen presence. Talk about wooden.

      • Adrienne

        Seriously?!?!? I didn’t know any Fringe fan felt that way. JJ is GREAT in this role. He’s SUPPOSED to be a little reserved….think of who the character was when we first met him. During his relationship with FauxLivia, though, we saw an easier smile, a more relaxed manner. John Noble is by far the best actor/character on the show, but there is nothing wrong with JJ at all.

      • Erik

        Roth really wants to see a unersvie merge doesn’t she? First Lost, now this. Overall I liked this episode (then again it takes a lot for me not to lately). But at the same time I’m never a big fan of episodes of anything that are almost entirely set up. Really liked Walter’s scene in the hospital chapel. The opening scene with Olivia and Walter was hilarious brilliant acting from both of them. It was nice that Peter’s son is called Henry. If I didn’t hate Fauxlivia so much I’d think it was really sweet of her. Peter being repelled by the machine was something I wasn’t expecting. One thing though that is bugging me. Why was there no mention of Olivia’s mysterious Mr X? I know it isn’t something for Peter to take priority on at the moment but it wasn’t acknowledged or addressed at all.

  • snapthejap

    I’m just hoping the 1st week’s ratings were of OUR world, and last week’s were the doing of Fauxlivia and the shape-shifters.

    • Aimee

      Yeah, I don’t see how anyone can miss tonight’s episode. Our world Over Here is going to change…

  • Lunna

    Call me crazy, but I am actually not that worried about cancellation. Something tells me we are gonna get AT LEAST one more season.

    • and i’ll go there lunna

      crazy – if Josh is giving interviews asking people to watch, its a serious possibility.

  • samara

    Josh, if you were on Teh Internets, you’d know the fans have been knocking themselves out already for months doing a campaign. It started as soon as the show was announced as going to Fridays – last fall. See:

    • Tania

      Well, the ad campaign is a failure then. The show is tanking! Can’t blame if he thinks there is NO campaign, with these smelly results.

      • Aimee

        Sorry if the fans of the show that don’t have a Nielsen box care enough to get the word out, hoping to reach the ears of the lucky chosen few. Better than doing nothing.

      • Samara

        The fact that the show got 1.9s for 2 weeks is not exactly “smelly results” plus all Fox wanted was for existing fans to make the move so that is where the emphasis has been. What have YOU done to help promote the show? Probably nothing.

      • and i’ll go there lunna

        Aimee and Samara – first – great that you’re doing the campaign already. I don’t think Josh Jackson is unappreciative of the love already out there. He’s letting us know that its dicey and we all need to do what we can. That’s all.

      • Tania

        Samara, I’m not a loser who campaigns to keep stupid TV shows on the air. I spend my time volunteering at hospitals to help sick children and working in a soup kitchen to help poor people. I’d say I’m the one with good priorities here. Why should I “help” a crappy little TV show when I can do so many better things like read to a child with cancer to help keep him from being terrified of his illness?

      • Aimee

        I contribute to church functions, Tania, so back off with the “what I do with my time is more valuable.”

        There is such thing as being a “patron of the arts.” Some people still believe in the power of human expression and creativity. Imagination and creativity make it worth being alive. I consider Fringe worthy of MY time because it creates joy. As worthy a cause as helping sick children, or sending money to a church or charity cause.

      • Jeff

        Apparently Tania ain’t so busy since she’s got time to troll on EW…

    • chris

      yea…pushing daisies ring a bell? How about arrested development? Shows get cancelled. Deal with it.

      • RJ

        i.e. Firefly, Dollhouse…any Fox show that even HINTS of sci-fi gets shuffled around so much that even the most loyal viewer has trouble finding it, along w/ little or no promotion. Then they air out of order, finally, the Friday night “death slot”, so they can use the “low-ratings” excuse. Getting impossible to start watching a show on Fox (NBC too). As soon as I get hooked, it’s gone…

  • Laura

    I want Fringe saved, if only to find out what happened to Walter’s brain parts.

    • Dicazi

      They were implanted into other people’s brains to keep them alive. Then Newton removed them and hooked them back up to Walter to get some info from him. Then they were disconnected and the tissue died.

    • Ferry

      I think most people who read would like to see more people elected from the green party or the socialist party, but the democrats seem marginally better than the republicans to them. All this stuff is a matter of degree.The really interesting people are the hard core marxists who want republicans in office. They believe in a historic inevitability if enough wealth is concentrated at the top then the people will revolt and create a worker’s state. These folks are the hard ones to figure out.

  • echo

    As Aimee stated above, there is a campaign already working hard to get the word out at & also Twitter: @FringeNetwork

  • Mike

    Didn’t they already move to Fridays once before and then switched back after they saw the ratings decrease? It seems primetime on Fridays is where shows go to die, put it back on earlier in the week.

    • Tania

      No. You’re wrong. Fringe was never on Friday before. It’s an unpopular show and doesn’t deserve a cushier time slot. It had a good one before and failed there.

      • Aimee

        It did well when it followed House on Tuesdays. Then FOX moved it to the overcrowded Thursday slot. As far as popularity, people watch crud like Idol and Glee. After Fringe is done, I say good-bye to network tv- cheap food for idiot brains.

      • JohnDoe

        Actually its quite a popular show, with the people who are bright enough to follow along with the writers. You apparently, aren’t one of those people. So please, go back to Jersey Shore where you came from. Or stick with something more on your level of intelligence, like Real Housewives.

      • Dave

        No, Tania. It performed fine throughout its entire first season on Tuesdays. Averaged about 9 or 10 million viewers. Then Fox had to go and fix what wasn’t broken and move it to Thursdays for season 2 and ratings began to go down.

      • @Aimee

        I watch Fringe as well as American Idol (tried to quit, but oddly unsuccessful) and Glee. People can have a taste that encompasses intelligent shows and the more escapist fare.

      • chris

        @aimee…that’s funny, I think the same way about fringe viewers as you do Idol and Glee viewers (of which I am a proud non watcher)….to say Fringe is intelligent is really hard to say. I liked it at first, but in that first episode, everything was just way too convenient. Since then, it has been so predictable with crap for a script and horrible acting. I have tuned in several times, not every week, just to make sure I am correct, just in case they’ve gotten better over time, and they haven’t. And the funny part, if I don’t watch for 5 weeks at a time, I still know the main plot, because they never really resolve ANYTHING, yet the mini plots that are written in order to lengthen the series are all messed up. Hopefully goodbye and good riddance.

  • rich

    This show needs to go to cable probably scfy where it would be a big hit in terms of cable ratings.The ship has sailed as far as network TV.

    • Brian

      It could survive on the CW. Not having cable, I’d prefer it go to the CW instead of a channel I don’t have.

      • Dicazi

        In my city, the CW IS on cable. AND it’s only on 1 cable company’s cable.

  • Margie

    If the Fox execs are reading this, please don’t cancel Fringe! I don’t have one of those Nielsen boxes but I’m watching every week live AND rewatching on my DVR. Maybe instead of writing to FOX we should be writing to the advertisers who are smart enough to advertise on Fringe?

  • Agent Smith

    The show is good, solid entertainment, and if the universe were run properly, that would be enough to save it. My problem is that I’m rarely home on Fridays, which I suspect is true of many, and is why the night is death for series television. I hope the DVR demo can save it.

  • Jay

    Show me a petition, and I’ll sign it. This is the best show currently airing on TV!!!

    This is the only show that I watch live.
    Do you hear me advertisers…? I SEE YOUR ADS when you sponsor this show!

    • Ames

      I went to the Fox website and promised to buy two of everything advertised if they renew Fringe.

      • Wayne

        Sorry to say, but I think that Fox is smart enough to know you are not going to do this. What if they show multiple car commercials during an airing of Fringe? Are you going to go out and buy a whole bunch of cars just to save a TV show? I think not…unless you are an eccentric billionaire, and if so, why don’t you just buy the rights of the show and produce and air it yourself? :)

    • Dicazi

      Contact Fox, Contact your local Fox Affliate. Even contact the companies sponsoring the show. Anybody can sign a petion, even repeatedly with different names. Fox needs to see people care enough to do more than add a name on a petition.
      Got the above from the 1960s save Star Trek drives. Fans sent in over 1 million letters to NBC to save Trek’s 3rd season.

  • Brian

    Fox knows the kind of ill-will they would recieve if Fringe was cancelled. They get enough of that aimed (deservedly so) at their news division. I don’t they’d want the same for their entertainment division.

    • MP

      If only that were true, but trust me they couldn’t care less.

      • k

        I agree. Look at the crap they pulled with Family Guy. Cancelled it twice then finally brought it back due to DVD sales. TV executives are strange creatures from an alternate universe that JJ & Co. should discover next season.

  • Celie

    Hello frm France. It’s a real pity! Here, they air Fringe on wednesdays, and late, not before 11 pm and they air 2 episodes. That’s quite silly as people who work can hardly stay in front of their tv till 1 in the morning. I feel like they never give a chance to this show. The big thing here is The mentalist, 3 episodes aired before Fringe! I never watch the show on tv and wait for dvds. So of course, I don’t help the audience. I’m unhappy with the baby thing. Season 3 didn’t begin here but I follow the plot online and t me Fringe is taking a direction I don’t like. Telling the truth, I want Peter with our Olivia :) hope they won’t lose Fringe extraordinary and particular soul, and I fear what they have in mind. Let’s see

  • emily

    Josh is just iterating what everybody else has been saying, that people need to watch live.

    Yes, the producers have said not the worry and Fox seems happy at the moment, I think what Josh is saying like everybody else, is we have had a drop and we cannot be complacent about that. People need to watch live. DVR numbers are high, but in the end live numbers are what count. We cannot afford for the ratings to keep on going down. They need to stabilise.

    Yes the P/O shippers have been put through hell, and it’s lovely for one of the actors to acknowledge that, because the writers think it’s funny. So, go Josh.

    • Bob

      I don’t watch anything live these days. You can wait 20 minutes to start DVR playback and watch the whole program and skip every commercial. Watching live is not an option for me. I cannot and will not put up with the commercial overload. Now on they play a 30 second spot in front of a 90 second news story.
      I find the story elsewhere…10 seconds I could live with.

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