A quick question with J.J. Abrams

J.J. Abrams’ work can be seen on the small and silver screens: he is the creator of Alias and co-creator of Lost, director of the new Star Trek movie and co-creator of the upcoming science fiction show Fringe.

The Oracle participated in a conference call with the Abrams (pictured above) to talk about the new show, which follows two FBI agents as they try to stop the spread of an unknown phenomenon from destroying humanity.

The Oracle: How do you feel Fringe compares to your other shows? What kind of expectations do you have for it compared to those?
Abrams: My expectations are sort of irrelevant because I never really know what to expect. You can never guess or assume what anyone is going to think. I can say that it’s one of those shows that, if I had nothing to do with it and saw it coming out, I’d want to kill myself.

I’d be so miserable because it is so the show that I’d want to watch. That doesn’t mean that anyone else will. That doesn’t mean that it’s good or bad. It just means it is so the kind of show that I am excited to see.

In terms of the other series, I don’t know how to compare. Fringe is a very different show, but I would say that one of the experiments that we’re doing on Fringe is writing the show so that it is not as overtly serialized as certainly Alias and Lost are or were. So how that translates, I don’t know.

What it will mean, I’m not sure, but because I’m so drawn to overarching and sort of long-term stories, there will still be the mythology, the evolution of characters, the revelations of their story and what “the pattern” means and what they’re doing and how they connect to that. So there’s all the stuff that’s happening.

But we’re doing it in a way that is much less week-to-week installments of that story, which then  requires you to reset things every time you do an episode that is a mythology episode, which makes it, I hope, something you can watch without feeling like you’re not in the club if you’ve missed an episode.

Fringe premieres Tuesday at 8 p.m. on FOX. Abrams’ other project, Star Trek, is scheduled for release May 8, 2009.