On Monday, I was fortunate enough to attend a red carpet event and a party to celebrate Fringe, which premieres on Tuesday, September 9 at 8pm. 9/9/08 at 8. Hmm, I wonder if the number 9988 is going to be significant in this series? Look, I know it’s a stretch, but damn you, J.J. Abrams, for making us all look for symbolism when none likely exists! [Shakes fist at sky]
Now, I am not generally a fan of J. J. Abrams’ work. I didn’t like Felicity very much because I couldn’t get past how unrealistic college life was portrayed. For some reason, though, I forced myself to see it through till the end, even the hokey re-doing history bit in which Felicity decides to be pre-med and go for Ben in the final season. Alias started out great but left me cold because I had absolutely no faith that the writers knew where they were going. And Lost. Don’t get me started on Lost. I watched the first season faithfully, week after week, hoping for some answers to the bazillion questions they kept throwing at us. I just can’t deal with not getting any answers.
So believe me that when I tell you that Fringe is going to be good, I’m not just some floozy on the J.J. bandwagon. I really think this series has potential. And it’s not just because FOX fed me and got me liquored up at the premiere party
Going to a party with big stars is not something that everyone does on a weekly basis – certainly, I was new to the whole thing – so I’ll take you step-by-step through the whole evening. Then you can pretend that you were there too.
The party was on the ninth floor of this old industrial looking building in West Chelsea called the Xchange. To get to the event space, we had to enter the crazy, scary-looking freight elevator that I swear wouldn’t look out of place in a horror movie. Once up at the top, I found myself in a large white room, almost hospital-like and all decked out with weird lab stuff and projectors created Fringe-y images on the walls.
The buffet table full of food was separated from the room with clear plastic curtains that went from ceiling to floor, exactly the sort of thing that would separate a “patient etherised upon a table” (to quote “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”) from the outside world. I have to say that the tuna steaks with prosciutto would have immediately been spat out by Padma Lakshmi, but I have to give props to whoever thought to put the bright green pesto sauce in little 100-mL beakers. Nice touch there.
I brought my plate of food over to one of the glass-topped tables that had centerpieces of beakers and test tubes in test tube racks filled with daisies sitting in blue liquid. I sat down on a clear Lucite chair to eat with some other web journalists whom I had met that day. There were waiters wearing lab coats who brought us some goodies: the s’mores cookies were bland and chalky, but the mini milkshakes with chocolate straws served in little glasses vials were divine – much more so after I requested the labcoat-clad bartender to put a shot of rum in it.
The party was pretty tame in the big white room because most of the guests were up on the roof. I heard tell that it was John Noble’s birthday, so all the Fringe cast were up there with cake. After I finished eating, I and my friends journeyed up the rickety stairs to the roof. There was a cool breeze coming in off the Hudson River, and the view was spectacular. At one point in the night, we all heard a loud boom from across the river. In response, Josh Jackson yelled “Cloverfield!” I’m sure that must happen at every part J.J. attends in New York.
I’m quite a shy person, so I didn’t want to bother the famous stars by stuttering out random sounds that approximated words of admiration to them. However, I did manage to wish John Noble a happy birthday and tell him that I think his views on string theory are absolutely nuts, all in one breath. (Earlier that day at the red carpet, he talked about how science, especially string theory, is opening up strange new worlds for us, but I, an experimental physicist by training, detest all things string.) I also accosted J.J. himself to tell him how I thought the Cloverfield monster was really cute. It totally is, though! It is cute when it cocks its head to one side with its pink ears all perked up. Then I gushed about cupcakes from Magnolia bakery with the co-creators and writers, Alex Kurtzman and Bob Orci. Look at me! Making small talk with famous people!
Oh yeah, I did talk to Joshua Jackson as well. You know, even though, I am ostensibly a professional writer, I couldn’t shake my fangirl-ness around him. He looks a lot taller and less round-cheeked in person. I feel slightly bad that his Pacey Witter persona is going to follow him around for the rest of his days on earth, but come on, is that really a bad thing?
The party ended when the mini coach hired to take the tipsy journalists back to their hotel parked in front of the Xchange. The night did not exactly end there, but that is a story for a different day.
-Debbie Chang, BuddyTV Staff Writer