Fringe is returning for it's fourth season on the 23rd. I'm excited, one because I will be buying Season 3 tomorrow when it comes out (along with season 2 of Community,) but I'm also excited because I'm very happy with FOX for staying with the series for as long as it has. We live in a world where the network airwaves are dominated by reality shows and competitions; the scripted series is going the way of the dodo bird.
Fringe had a lot of ground to pick up, being a sci-fi series in the era of shows like Lost and Battlestar Galactica. Shows have tried to create deep complex stories and have failed right out of the gate: Invasion, The Nine, Flashforward, Surface, Threshold and most recently The Event. These shows suffered from the LOST curse, and at the beginning it looked like Fringe would end up the same way with it's close parallels to The X-Files and LOST. There have been a few rough patches here and there but the show has gotten exponentially better season to season.
That success has a lot to do with J.J. and the team of incredibly talented writers/producers who have an understanding of how to tell a deep intricate story with a pacing that does not require us to focus on every single detail (you can still do so if you choose.) The success can also be attributed to the stellar cast; I feel if it wasn't for John Noble, Joshua Jackson and Anna Torv this show would have probably failed like many of the other sci-fi series of the past few years. John Noble and Anna Torv even have been playing multiple versions of the same characters and never faltering in their delivery.