Fringe: Why I Hate Faux-Livia

By Stefanie Lee

Oct 15, 2010

Last week, Tim posed a big question—Which universe do you prefer?—and I finally decided on my answer after watching last night’s episode, “Do Shapeshifters Dream of Electric Sheep?” I am on Team Blue Universe for one simple reason: Faux-livia (Anna Torv) is a jerk.

She has her reasons, of course. I’d probably be a jerk too if I were stuck in an alternate universe with such a complicated mission weighing on my psyche. But my main problem with Faux-livia is that she’s consciously taking advantage of the Blue Fringe Division. Our Olivia is not completely responsible for infiltrating the Red Fringe Division because she’s not fully aware of what she’s doing (care of Walternate, (John Noble) who's experimented on her and thus gained partial control of her actions).

To be fair, the Red Universe has a lot going for it; I’d love to live in a world filled with mega-advanced technology, Agent Charlie Francis (Kirk Acevedo), Colonel Broyles (Lance Reddick) in tight shirts, and The West Wing. But this is also the world from which Faux-livia and Walternate originated, and I just can’t get behind a team with such destructive intentions.

Last night, we saw Faux-livia get into some real trouble, which was actually really comforting because it means that the fake blonde is not going to be in our world forever. Sure, she may have seduced Peter (Joshua Jackson) and strengthened their emotional bond, but Peter isn’t stupid, either. He was honest with Faux-livia about how different she’s seemed since “returning” from the Red Universe, and his curiosity isn’t going to cease just because they did the nasty.

Plus, Shapeshifter Overlord Thomas Newton (Gordon Ramsay Sebastian Roche) is out of the picture now, so her already-tenuous grasp on the Blue Universe just got a little weaker. It’s only a matter of time before her cover is blown!

I’ll leave you to ponder these questions for the next three weeks; new episodes of Fringe return on November 4, which is fine by me because the Giants are in the playoffs! Go orange!

1. What did you think of “Do Shapeshifters Dream of Elextric Sheep?”

2. How far will Walternate get with his experiments on Olivia?

3. Will Peter be able to solve the puzzle of the Doomsday Box?

Follow writer Stefanie Lee on Twitter: @StefAtTVDotCom

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  • sofiaax85 Feb 19, 2011

    I honestly don't understand why you would hate her. If you think about it, her universe sees OUR universe as the enemy. If the show had started off with her universe as the original and ours as the "alternate" we would be on her side. It's Walter's fault that the other universe has weak spots and is crumbling... I personally think that fauxlivia is a great character. Anna has been doing a create job of being both Olivias, subtly capturing the slight differences between the two. I like Fauxlivia because she is more easy going, funny, and yet encompasses all the attributes that make our Olivia great. With the new developments in the world of Fringe, I honestly don't know anymore wich universe I would like to see thrive. Right now, I am bending toward ours because I love our Walter and our Astrid, rather than the much duller versions of them in the other world.

  • DebraMcClure Jan 01, 2011

    I love Faux -Olivia; she seems to possess an inner strength that "wimpy" Oliva does not - In fact everyone in the Alt-Universe is more interesting - this stems from their seeming villainous, I think, and villains are always more fun.

  • Dausuul Nov 28, 2010

    Personally, I've always felt Olivia was a very dull protagonist. Alt-Livia is far more interesting and I look forward to her episodes.

    I know it's never gonna happen, but in my ideal "Fringe," Original-Livia would die and Alt-Livia would take her place permanently. Her divided loyalties could make her a fascinating hero/villain. But all you folks who hate her can take heart--given where her character development is going, I'd lay two to one odds she dies tragically in the Season 3 finale. Probably saving the life of Peter, Original-Livia, Walter, or all three.

  • Lunatikatt Oct 20, 2010

    loved your review i hate her too and im so sad that peter couldnt realize it sooner im so sad for the moment our olivia finds out he did it with fake her.
    Loving Anna Torv doing both characters! Awesome episode. ohhh and i just read for the first time about it having this long pause! noooo! what am i to do? hehe

    ps. my fave part of your post is Shapeshifter Overlord Thomas Newton (Gordon Ramsay Sebastian Roche) HAHA

  • dark7angel Oct 19, 2010

    I LOVED this episode! It was fantastic!!! I'm gonna miss Newton, he was such a great antagonist!!! Sebastien Roche is awesome! As for Alt-livia, I don't hate her, but I'm not her fan either... She really gets to my nerves! Anna Torv does an amazing job playing the two characters!

  • memizz Oct 19, 2010

    I hate Alt-livia. But I love to hate her!

  • gator_md Oct 19, 2010

    Not a huge fan of the Alt-livia, but you have to give Anna Torv mad props for really selling the character. Walter and Walternate have very distinct characters, while Olivia is being defined by nuances...Alt-livia is more confident and gung-ho, for lack of a better word, but the dedication and courage is still there. Still think that the Peter is smart enough to know that despite Olivia making a declaration in Over There Pt 2, she wouldn't just jump into anything with him...but I for one am willing to stick around for the ride...

  • novembernicole Oct 18, 2010

    Faux-livia, Bolivia, Alt-livia . . . whatever, the names don't bug me but the character does.

  • shabs42 Oct 18, 2010

    She's fake because she's impersonating the Olivia from our side, but I suppose Alt-livia makes more sense. One other point I had, I think it will be Ella, not Walter that figures out it's the wrong Olivia. She'll say something to Peter or Walter that will make it click in their heads, my bet is Peter.

  • LeeAnderson1 Oct 18, 2010

    Thank you irg19!! It's been my point all along. For some reason the concept of alternate universes flies over people's heads. She's not fake, she's as real as the Olivia from our universe. The only difference is their memories and life and the reason for such changes is because Walter ripped their world apart.

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