Fringe: Doing God's Work

Fringe S04E22: "Brave New World: Part Two"

So I tuned into the Season 4 finale of Fringe, when all of a sudden a mediocre summer blockbuster disaster movie broke out! It's a shame, too, because the show's fourth season had some fantastic moments in the face of an uncertain future. But that uncertain future might have been what transformed the tone of the show in "Brave New World: Part Two." Before you all Google my address, gather up some paper bags and matches, and feed your dog Ex-Lax, let me make one thing clear. I love Fringe. I just wasn't a huge fan of the two-part finale.

Because Fox didn't give Fringe an early renewal for Season 5 (btw, thank you, Fox, for renewing Fringe for Season 5!!!), "Brave New World" could just as easily have been a series finale, and creators J.H. Wyman and Jeff Pinkman played it that way, a lot more so than they have in the past, particularly with the show's Season 2 and Season 3 finales. This was an open-and-shut chapter of the series that avoided risk, exploited clichés (ugh, so sad about that), and generally ignored much of what has made the Fringe so great in the past.

One of those things is the show's ability to live just beyond our understanding of the universe. It's called Fringe for a reason, and not Super Way Out There Science Fair. With the late introduction of David Robert Jones and the even later introduction of William Bell, Fringe began entering the territory of super-science a lot more than it had in the past. It's true that elements such as Cortexiphan have been a huge part of the series since it started, but those have always been the elements that felt a little too far out there for me. I love the multiple universes because they're theoretical and allow me to crack open a nice, cold can of philosophy with you guys. The concept is a ton of fun to explore and compare notes on. But Cortexiphan may as well be Adamantium or Unobtanium, and Bell's perfect-universe Porcu-people may as well be Sharktopus or Megagator. It's fun to watch Fringe and wonder if there might actually be another universe out there; it's a lot less fun to wonder what I need to do to control someone on a nearby rooftop as if they're in an Xbox Kinect game. Fringe grabs my brain and takes it on a wild ride when it deals with concepts of identity, existence, and the fabric of the universe. But when it regenerates brains and lemon cakes or jump-starts dead people to push the story in a certain direction, it's just not that Fringe I love.

I know, I suck.

But this was a season finale, and potentially a series finale, so there were important things to do like tie up loose ends. And "Brave New World" accomplished that. William Bell returned with a God complex that was too big for both universes, so he came up with the idea to create his own new universe. I could've sworn that Bell was showing Walter old episodes of Terra Nova, but it was actually a simulation of the universe he was planning to create. Bell's motivation to build such an idyllic porcupine paradise actually came from the full-brained Walter of the past, before he had the portion of his brain that held that thought removed. (You can do that?) But Bell thought Walter was onto something, and was so convinced that he was meant to fulfill Walter's idea of playing God by creating a perfect universe that he was willing to destroy two universes in order to do so, even though the guy who convinced him of the idea in the first place (Walter) decided it was a stupid idea after all and told him to stop it. William Bell, as it turned out, was a giant asshole with incredibly flawed logic.

But in order to create his third universe full of blue skies, lush lawns, and monster-ish creatures, he had to go back 85 million years into the past. Ack! Sorry, that's Terra Nova again. In order to create New Bellville, he needed a power source, and that power source was Olivia and her Cortexiphanized super body. After last week's episode, we realized that Olivia was going to be the important piece of this season's puzzle, just as Peter was in Season 3, and that was absolutely spot-on. Peter and Olivia headed to Bell's tanker as it made its way toward the Westfield of the sea—the only safe spot that would survive when the universes collapsed. One Dumbo "you had the power in you all along" speech later from Nina, Olivia used her powers and hopped universes, landing where the S.S. Bell, which had already shimmered away into the other universe, had "disappeared" to with Peter.

Now we all knew that Olivia was prophesied to die thanks to September, but I don't think any of us predicted how she would be killed. Walter, faced with the possibility that both universes would implode on each other and that he and William Bell would be stuck in a third universe with no licorice, made the call. And it was the right call. He calmly shot Olivia right in the center of the forehead with the precision of an Army sniper like a f***ing champ. Just BAM perfectly centered in Olivia's brain! Remember how Bell's henchmen couldn't shoot Walter and Astrid from six feet away with a sub-machine gun in the last episode? Walter's plan worked, the universes stopped imploding, and Peter got really sad. But when it's one person's life vs. all the lives of two universes, it's a no brainer. I'd shoot my cat if that was the choice. Sorry, Muffy, don't take it personally!

Knowing that his dream universe died with Olivia, Bell said, "I'm out!" and was beamed out of there to whatever Holodeck he hides on. But guess what? There was still the Olivia-is-dead problem! Good old Walter, he always has a plan. Olivia's brain was swimming in Cortexiphan, and as we conveniently saw last week, Cortexiphan can regenerate lemon cakes and probably brains. So Walter poked a few holes in her head and popped the bullet out, and the Cortexiphan did its thing and brought Olivia back to life (Cortexiphan doesn't just regenerate; it can reanimate, too, and it's also spectacular at getting red wine stains out of clothing). And that's how this show got away with having September tell the truth about Olivia dying while still giving us the sappy ending where Olivia told Peter she's pregnant. Fifty bucks says it's a girl.

Also conveniently, Olivia burned off most of her Cortexiphan due to "the intense energy utilization," so she's pretty much back to normal now. Fringe, if you're going to go there, then go all the way. Turn her into a frickin' superhero, don't just give it to us for one episode because it's convenient for your finale. But Walter left the door open for more Olivia heroics when he said there may be trace amounts of Cortexiphan left in her. I hate it when shows do that.

I did like most of the aftermath of saving the day, though. Broyles got promoted, Fringe Division got more funding for a real science department, and Nina got a job as the head of said science department. Did anyone have flashes of The Wire when Broyles (a.k.a. Cedric Daniels) walked off arm-in-arm with redhead Nina (a stand-in for Rhonda Pearlman)? Oh, that was just me?

Anyway, we should also talk about THAT scene. You know what I'm talking about: when Jessica (guest-star Rebecca Mader) was killed but then brought back to sorta-life to be interrogated about William Bell's whereabouts. It was totally creepy to see her eyes dance about in opposite directions like the lead singer from Men at Work. And then she started calling out for mommy and talking about her old blue bike and how it got left out in the rain! I was hoping she would say, "I'm not allowed to have chocolate before dinner," because that would have blown everyone's mind! And if you don't get that reference then ask someone in the comments section and hopefully they'll tell you.

And there's one last thing. I was disappointed that September and the Observers and the Other Universe didn't really factor into the finale at all, but at least September came back to set up Season 5. "We have to warn the others. They're coming," he told Walter. Who? The other Observers? The Porcu-people? Fox executives? The good news is that we only have four months to wait before we find out, hopefully. And you know when that is? SEPTEMBER! Don't forget to pick up your brain matter, dudes, because your minds just got 'sploded.

I wish both parts of "Brave New World" had been better, and I wish the end of the season hadn't gone in the direction it did. But that doesn't take too much away from what I actually thought was a great season of Fringe. In the end, plot became more important than themes and thinking, the two foundations of what makes Fringe one of my favorite shows. Thank goodness this wasn't the series forever end!



Notes From the Other Side

– Did anyone not see Jessica being a double-crosser from a long, long, long, way away?

– Stasis runes that kept September from moving? When did this show turn into Supernatural? Seriously, what is this? And why is it so easy to break the runes if they're technologically advanced? You can just scrape 'em off.

– I really wish Wyman and Pinkner hadn't said the story of "Letters of Transit" had been important and that the series would be revisiting that period again. It spoiled several moments from this finale, like Olivia's pregnancy and Astrid surviving the gunshot. I'm not sure why they felt compelled to confirm its importance. I much preferred thinking it was a possible scenario rather than an inevitable scenario.

– I really did enjoy September catching those bullets. But the special gun that William Bell made just seemed like more hooey science.

– Oh yeah, Astrid survived. Yay! Predictable? Absolutely. But yay anyway!


Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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I gotta say bud, that was a pretty damn funny reading, 'grats on your review. Just careful not too push the jokes and all too far the bridge.
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Simply LOVED this episode. But regarding the corpse-animated scene, when they question Jessica's brain. I cant stress this enough, I have never, in my entire life, been so scared shitless! Who knew moving eyes back and forth like that would be such an effective creepfactor. I couldnt sleep for 4 hours, only saw her creepy smile, her eyes falling back and forth and heard her creepy voice, coming for me. Brrrrrrr! Good Job scaring me half to death, Fringe!
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At some point I thought they were doing "The Matrix 4".

Looks like next season they are doing "V" the sequel... (invasion - resistance)

They are coming: The Observers. They hinted at it a few ep. back with the brand new silver opening sequence.
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gotta agree with all of your bullet points though i was glad i didn't have to worry about astrid dying. yeah a lot of the episode felt gimmicky to me. so bell was going to create a "universe" made up of one planet and a handful GMOs?



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I liked it, but it definitely didn't live up to my expectations (or beat last season's finale.) I wanted more out of the Bell plot, but it ended abruptly. Fortunately we know it isn't the end of it, and we get another season anyway.



The corpse interview was horrifying and memorable though.
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like the finale or not (blame fox for taking so long to renew or maybe the writes wanted to give fox a big F U if they had cancelled the show) but the fact is with a lot of strings tied it means the shorten final season is going to be deliciously frantic given that they only have half a season to really wrap things up. I mean the last two episodes were probably already filmed before renewal and since fox was already complaining about the budget there was no way they were going to re film them. and who would want two episodes people here seem not to like made into three (season opener being the third.)
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One Note For all fans : most of you saying comparing this show to others , this episode still better than most of finales ....guess what ? ...The Vampire Diaries Finale was way stronger and better than Fringe finale !!! ........"i never thought i would say this in my whole life xD"

Ya you can say whatever you want about this silly teenager show but sometimes some shows getting stronger and others weaker!
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I disagree, even though I agree that VD finale was stronger than previous VD episodes, and Fringe finale was slightly weaker than previous eps. But the quality of the two shows overall is incomparable. Vampire Diaries is aimed at the popular market (sometimes it can be Dallas with teen vampires), although overall for me it is an ok show, but not comparable to the consistent quality of writing and acting of Fringe.
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It was a big "Meh" even though there are some cool moments but this episode was way below the standards of any fringe finale episodes.The ones who said it felt like alittle of series finale ,OMFG, if this was the series finale it would be like the worst thing ever so i don't know what they are trying to explain because both ways this 2-parts Finale sucks . The best thing out of it is there still another season to make a great finale ....so let' wait and see!
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I liked the episode. I was shocked that it was Walter who shot her, I thought for sure she would use her powers to make Peter shoot her. I liked the fact that it portrayed Walter as understanding that sometimes an idea and the ability to make it a reality does not mean that one should. There are 2 different scientist portrayed here, one that understood that there are limits on what one should to even if it is possible while the other thought that because the possibility was there it meant that he should go on ahead-even if it meant killing billions of people. I am looking forward to seeing next season and just HOW we get to the future we saw in "Letters of Transit"

Oh, and the lemon cake that regenerated itself had pig-brain in it so that is why we knew it would work on Olivia.

The runes did not just rub off, in Supernatural you can simply brush the dust away with your feet, but when Peter tried to touch it it shocked him, so a little more advanced I'd say-guessing they got that info from another observer who is kinda a jackass.

How can that gun seem like hooey science and yet the pocpeople is believable? I think that out of everything this show has put on a gun that shoots bullets fast is not the least believable by a long shot.



Gotta say, I kinda called it with the fact that the bullet was not meant to signify that Olivia died-remember the one that her daughter had around her neck? At least I got 1 thing right.
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I know it's not gonna happen because 'what's done is done' or whatever, but I really want Walter's memories of Peter to come back like Olivia's did. I know he's accepted Peter into his life, but he still believes that this is not "HIS" Peter. And it is!! It IS his Peter!!! I don't know why, but it's been driving me crazy all season. Especially since Walter saw Peter in his mind, tv, etc, before Peter 'came back'. So, he obviously HAS those memories locked away in his brain somewhere.



And I want them back!!
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Actually, he is not 'his' Peter. He is the Peter from the other side-he is Walternate's son.

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I'd disagree with that. Re. our Walter, it is HIS Peter, as much as it Peter's Olivia. In other words, the Blue timeline was HIS Peter, although we know it wasn't his actual son.
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I just realised why the Observers can't read Etta's mind...
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Well...It wasn't the best season finale ever. Mainly because it felt like a series finale, due to the writers didn't knew if FOX was going to cancel the show or not...so I blame fox...I always blame fox on everything.

It wasn't bad either...but I'd have loved more action and suspense...the finale lack on those 2 things...but that happened because they didn't have the time...they choose to please the viewers and fans by giving it a sense of series finale in case of cancellation so they wasted a lot of time doing so. I'd have ended the episode when Walter shoot Olivia...We all would have known she's not really dead, for long, but it would have a better impact in our minds..."holy shit Walter shot Olivia!". I had that thought but quickly fade away leaving me with nothing. Sad...because I was there sitting with my mouth open...what could have been for months of thinking and reliving that scene in my head ended in two minutes..."they are coming" isn't the same...

There's a couple of things I hate about the future of Fringe. One was the reset button on Olivia powers...come on!...that was convenient...Two is the bigger funding of Fringe division...You know they'll come up with weird gadgets and futuristic things which honestly I'm afraid it will get incredible. Aside for that I expect to be a great final season with the bad guys being the observers...I hope they have the time to develop the story and giving it a nice ending without feeling rushed... ( please, not like this ending...do not try to please everyone and give us the happy ending...leave us thinking and wishing for more Fringe to come which will not happen but great finales are the ones that are like that not the gorram happy endings).

Jessica's interrogation was creepy as hell...Jesus Christ that scene scared me.

Olivia's pregnancy...blah. Time jump please till the child is born.

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Just in case anybody actually IS wondering about the "no chocolate before dinner "-thing...

I am pretty sure that is what Rebecca Mader's character said on LOST just before she died. Just thinking of that scene makes my heart cry a little...
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I agree with (most of) what Tim has to say on the finale. No matter how much I love Fringe, it just wasn't what I had hoped for. Sure, there were good moments. But there were also too many not-so-good moments. And not nearly enough mind-blowing being done, unfortunately.



I generally accept the science shown in Fringe and tend to dismiss various complaints about its craziness. And yet, the "resurrection" of Olivia felt much more cheesy than usual. But I guess the same could be said about creating one's own personal pocket universe...

While I was glad that Astrid survived, I couldn't help but think how cheap it was. The situation seemed so dire, but it didn't take her very long to shrug off the bullet wound and walk around as if nothing has ever happened.

Finally, after all the setting up that David Robert Jones had received this season, his send off must have been the most anti-climatic ever.



As to what worked... The scene of interrogating Jessica's corpse was absolutely creepy. Actually, in some weird, sickly way it was one of the highlights of the episode. Rebecca Mader did a great job, making me feel very uneasy.

Having Leonard Nimoy back was a good thing, because I'd fully expected that we might not see him again. At least he's changed his mind, which makes me regret a little less than a more available actor wasn't signed for the role in the first place.

I also thought that Joshua Jackson did an outstanding job at conveying his shock and grief over the "death" of Olivia.



All in all, the finale was passable, and not much more. I understand (or should I say - believe) that it might have been in large part due to the network keeping the show's creators in the dark for too long. They could not plan ahead, and these two last episodes came across as disjointed. The ending of the episode has also shown us how little time is required to set up another season...

I probably would've been disappointed much more than I am, if it hadn't been for the "Letters of Transit". In a way that was the real finale (of sorts) for me, with Fringe in all its glory. Looking forward to season 5.

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Is it September yet?
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Those eye animations really upped the creep factor of interrogating a fresh corpse!
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Boo, Tim, Boo! HOW DARE YOU?!



...



You named your cat MUFFY? Poor cat!
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Haha.



Perhaps Tim's got more than 1 cat? BUFFY, MUFFY, TUFFY, and ALT-MUFFY (from the other universe).
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Ok, forgive me if this has all been said already but I couldn't find the time to scan 173 comments, but I thought the finale was great. See what you need to realize is that the episode 'Letters of Transit" did happen. It was a real episode and acted as the basis for season 5. In this episode as far as we could all tell Olivia was dead. This was good though because it validated the prophecies of the observer "September" who was quoted (from earlier episode) as saying that in all possible futures, Olivia must die. Sure enough in the end she did die. Walter shot her. This confirmed what September said then, but then it raised more questions then it did answer them because now that Olivia is alive we must wonder how does she die for real, because she was no where to be found in the episode "Letters of Transit". Sure you can argue by that episode existing it took away some of the magic of the finale but at the same time it opened the door to more questions. Oh and by the way there is still pre-existing questions not yet answered, like:



Why did Walter and Peter freeze themselves in amber?

By being frozen in amber does this mean they managed to develop it on their side or did they get stuck on the faux-side? However if they got stuck on the faux-side then how was Astrid there with them?

Also shown in that episode was a moment where Walter had cut off Bell's hand. If this is so then how did they find Bell because as you know in the season finale he disappeared at the end?

On top of all of this, and it was probably the, "They" referenced by September in the last moments of the finale, but who exactly was attacking Walter & Peter in the episode 'Letters of Transit" and why?



Clearly there is a lot there to work with for the final season. Also, I can understand if some people weren't as impressed with this season finale, because maybe it was a little children's bookish, but the points I made above kind of counter-act that. My thing is for the author of the above article to claim that this episode could have passed as a series finale just isn't so, even if you threw out September's comment at the end. In order for this episode to have worked as a series finale you would have had to throw out that comment and go back in time to keep the episode "Letters in Transit" from ever having had happened.



Simply put I loved this finale and I can not wait for the season 5 premiere where I am sure we will get more questions than we will answer.
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Well this was an absolutely horribly finale. No edge whatsoever. It could have been any stupid show made to pander to the audience who want happy endings. If Walter really would have killed Olivia to save the worlds it would have been perfect, with a real sacrifice, but now it just turned out to be a childrens tale. Or maybe this was necessary for FOX to greenlight a new sason.



It becomes entirely uninteresting when nobody is actually at risk and if someone dies there is always a cure, at least in this universe. This is the second season finale we have seen Olivia killed in , and still she's not dead. And she is pregnant, AND back to normal???



Just plain terrible writing!
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What an odd post. If you don't like Fringe, what is the point of commenting at all here about 2 episodes?



Terrible writing this is not. That is quite a strange thing to say. Compare this finale to much lower standards of most other TV shows. Try writing a TV series anywhere near this good, and you will realise what genuis there is behind this show (and before you ask, yes I've tried and have seen others try, successfully and unsuccessfully).



I said myself, based on Fringe standards, this was below average. But that average is extremely high on this show.
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My point is of course that they cheapened everything they had set up so far. The idea that Olivia is the tool to destroy the universes, and that Walter would have to choose between saving the uiverses or her, is a pretty strong one, but to allow Walter to be able to kill Olivia thus saving the universes AND resurrect her AND also making her "normal" in the process, is just bad writing, or pandering to the audiences expectations like they are kids.



The only way it would be worse and even more mushy would be if Olivia was also pregnant with Peters child....oh yes......
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If you're not a fan, you're not a fan. But use 'bad writing', 'pandering to audiences' to describe the numerous other shows out there this applies to (and there is enough of them!), but not Fringe. Such phrases don't apply at all. Being worse than a previous episode doesn't mean you should just start trashing it. I'm done here.









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Maybe I was wrong, but I said 'IF'.



"Obviously he is a real fan" ....... So you can make an assumption and I can't?? In any case, this is hardly important.



So thanks for stamping on my post for just 1 little thing I said which wasn't even the main point. Free world, free speech and all that.
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Dude. He didn't say he isn't a fan or doesn't like the show. Obviously he is a real fan instead of just a fanboy as he speaks his mind which doesn't mean that you automatically don't like the whole series.
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Too heavy on the clichs, yes - but I've been waiting to see if the "Observers rule the world"-verse was a one-off or not, and the ending here seems to say it's not.

(I haven't read any spoilers about it, I don't really read a lot of showbiz news).

Intriguing, but I couldn't help but wonder where Olivia was in that 'verse, and I hope they manage to avert the looming disaster so MAYBE Peter and Olivia can FINALLY get a frickin' break for a few years!
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superb ending of season 4 and I`m excited for 5th season of what Fringe will bring YEAHHH
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I liked the two-episode finale despite all the "too convenient science" Tim talked about. The crazy science never really bothers me, to be honest. Since the first episode, never thought anything would be possible, so never expected anything to make sense. It makes sense on Fringe, that's enough for me. What I didn't really like was the too corny music on some key parts such as Nina's speech and Olivia/Peter at the end (that part could've been shorter - although I like them together, I don't like the clich romance that doesn't fit the series). Why should there be music (or such irritating pieces for that matter) on scenes that are already so emotional? Aren't we capable of having feelings ourselves?? I hate it when movies and series do that. All in all, it was a good finale for a very good season. Unlike many other shows, Fringe is usually consistent and gives us answers without holding too much. Good job, guys!
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It's interesting to see the effect of a couple of episodes that were below previous exceptionally high standards.



By any other standards, they were still the best thing on TV.



I'd like to thank the Fringe cast and crew, WB and Fox for creating and bringing us 4 seasons of this brilliant and amazingly well thought out TV show, with superb writing and acting.
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Lol, I totally had "The Wire" flashback at the end with broyles and nina. As the rest of the finale, it was a little meh...I expected a bigger reason for the destruction of both universes than Belly being a douche. And Olivia's resurection felt a little cheap. Don't get me wrong, i liked it, but it was not up to par with the best fringe episodes.
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is it just me ? or there is anyone else who thinks fringe should've ended earlier .. seriously a fifth season ? i couldn't stand the beginning of season 4 when peter wasn't even in the main cast ! i just hope for some action for season 5 , and i won't be waiting for it .. i just wish fox gave alcatraz a new shot.

and yup i also hope to see some former LOST cast , it just gives a huge smile on my face when i see those actors and actress .. LOST was the best and still the best EVER
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ALCATRAZ? You're kidding, right?
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Pot, meet kettle...Lost was the king of the "lived well passed it's sell date" shows.



Lost doesn't hold up.
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and no one can forget the atrocious final ending to that series.
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Not even its pants...
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What a strange comment. I mean, you are entitled to your opinion, but this is what this is. Not a reason for a show to be continued or cancelled. This show has demonstrated a capability for interesting and continuing storylines more than any other show I can think of.



Lost was a good show. But it was a different show. Again, Lost ot any other show being cancelled is not a reason to be against any other show.
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I've only watched the Pilot. Never did like it.
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First time around, so did I. Can't remember if I watched only the pilot, or the first two or three episodes - but it was too hokey and pseudo-science for me.

Then I was bored one day, and gave it another shot - and it BLEW ME AWAY!

Four seasons later, and I'm still HOOKED, and think it's one of the best shows I've ever seen, mostly for the great acting, interesting character developments and slowly unfolding epic storyline. :)
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Well, if are into sci-fi at any level, then you've missed out on one of the best TV shows of recent times, and some of the best storylines and character acting TV has seen.
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Complaining about a lot of sci-fi elements on a CLEARLY sci-fi based show? Really? You make me sick. Go watch Law and order or something.... This ending was far fetched? We already had: Time travel, shapeshifters, multiple universes, Monsters, telekinesis, super strenght, melting people, KILLER PLANTS connected to kids, pyrokinesis.... should i go on? NOOOOOO THIS EPISODE WAS TOOOOOOOOO SCI-FI.... meh
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"Really? You make me sick."



lol...fanboy much?
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Fanboyism true.... But my point still stands. Fringe did not do anything more ridiculous than what was already done. People want to pretend now that the show was not as sci-fi as it actually always was. Remember EMOTIONAL ENTANGLEMENT.... explain that...
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I don't remember seeing a single comment saying something about the AMOUNT. Did you even read through the arguments? The disappointment is mainly about consistency and that the plot developments were explained too easy and convenient. I beg to differ.
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I agree here...just because a show is sci fi doesn't give it free license to do anything. It still needs to be consistent...still needs to establish it's own rules and the abide by those rules.



...and while it CAN explain away plot developments easily and conveniently it's still going to feel cheap depending on how it's done.
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And i quote:

"One of those things is the show's ability to live just beyond our understanding of the universe. It's called Fringe for a reason, and not Super Way Out There Science Fair."



Let me emphasize the important part: SUPER WAY OUT THERE SCIENCE FAIR. It is clearly implied in there. Maybe i wasnt fair with the rest of the review. But my argument stands 100%
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And I quote: "Complaining about a lot of sci-fi elements".

I seriously don't think that Tim is doing that in your quote. I say again that most people are upset about how "convenient" those elements have been set up and quote Tim later in his review: "(...) when it regenerates brains and lemon cakes or jump-starts dead people to push the story in a certain direction, it's just not that Fringe I love.". There it is: The science is "way out there" because how it's introduced didn't feel organic this time. It's only there to PUSH it conveniently in a direction. No good explanations resulting in plot holes, just everything happening super-fast only to travel from A to B within the plot.



Sorry, but you really twist his words a bit by focusing only on 1 sentence and paraphrasing it.
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I loved the finale. Maybe a little predictable with the Pregnancy and They're Coming..but I loved that what I WANTED to happen..actually did. So I was very very satisfied with this finale...given they did the best they could without knowing about the Final 13.



Just one thing, Just one thing I need to know guys:



We were told that we'd know more about the mystery X man from 3x19 LSD that Olivia said was going to kill her, that we'd know more by the end of the season. did they really just drop that plot point? I am REALLY hoping that they bring this back. Because I love the LSD episode and don't want it to take away from future viewings knowing they never ever go back to that. So please guys....please clear it up for me.



Yea yeaa..different timeline and all that, but Olivia remembers that now. & we were told by the producers that we'd find out more about this before the end of the season...and now well...maybe that was the "something" they filmed out of context that was interpreted by John Noble as an alternate ending?
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And the shapeshifters, apparently they just got up and left...
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Maybe they shifted into porcu-people?
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An awesome finale to say the least! My award goes to that brilliant creep show by that british redhead. Now that Fringe is renewed its gonna be interesting to see how they tie up all those timelines and futurejumps and such. I hope with as little as 13 episodes left,its able to do so(and not end up the way Lost did!)
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Can't possibly end up as bad as Lost did, that would be really Sci Fy phooey...
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Oh Lost, dreadful ending indeed..
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Well, I loved the wrap finale. It was refreshing to see a nanosecond of happiness w/Peter and Olivia. And because they wrapped up so much, now I'm left wondering what will they pull off for next seasons. And I always enjoy William Bell and Walter. And I will agree w/U, Broyle did remind me of Cedric Daniels, but I have to admit he always did in Fringe anyway. Oh, how I miss The Wire.
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I was a little disappointed that Bell master's plan hadn't anything to do with the observers... I mean, it did seems that Bell and his minions know about them, but the new world wasn't designed (apparently) to avoid an invasion... I think his explanation for creating a third world was a little poor.
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I thought Bell might give the observer invasion as a reason for creating the new world as well, but alas.
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I have a question...what ever happened to the kid Peter and Fauxlivia had? They just dropped that when the universes were merged and Peter disappeared, right?
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Pay attention, when peter stopped existing, fauxlivia NEVER met Peter so she never slept with him. Then when Peter went inside the observers mind, he finds out about Henry and comes to know he had a son who never existed. Why do people keep asking the same questions when the question was already answered!
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He was never meant to have Henry. He was meant to have Henrietta with Olivia, due to the fact that Henrietta will have Cortexiphan in her system and be immune to The Observers' abilities
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So they dropped that storyline. At least so far.
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That was in the timeline before Peter disappeared.
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a special gun that fires a bullet alot faster than normal guns is hooey science? Seems really straightforward compared to 99% of the science on this show :)
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I think it is more about convenience, than about the level of technology. At least that's what I assumed Tim meant.
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I didn't think it was predictable that Astrid survived..I mean, she looked like a goner from the last episode. Needless to say, i'm ecstatic that she is alive they finally let her character become more central this season. I'm a huge fan..I love the show, I loved this season, i liked the finale, but i felt it was going to be more than what it was..But from time to time, it's nice to see a sort of low key finale, rather than 42 minutes of non stop plot twists.
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I was so sure Astrid was goner, I've been grieving her for a week.
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Good that they cleared that up early on, so it didn't distract from the story.
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September: "This stasis rune is very sophisticated technology, I didn't expect them to posses it."



Peter: "It's okay, I'll just rub it off with this freakin' two by four."
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Yeah just ridiculous like everything else in this episode.
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i think the shout make a new show set in the future like episode 19 Letters of Transit
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I thought both parts of the finale were great from beginning to end. Not up to par with previous seasons, but the producers were working with limited knowledge of the show's chances of continuing, so blame Fox for that! Everything that happened made sense to me. No confusion at all, except for the ending when September said that the others are coming. Maybe its just me, but to complain about any part of this two-part finale just seems ludicrous.
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". No confusion at all, except for the ending when September said that the others are coming" I think that is from Letters of Transit Episode 19 when the Observers are evil, I think he means the Observers are coming ..
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Definetely the Observers, that version from "Desmond" episode was scary to say the least!
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I thought the 2-part finale was pretty good. The main down-side being that, without having seen all the stuff before, it wouldn't make much sense. So anyone that joined in after hearing about it getting renewed, may be confused.



Actually, I suspect the finale was slightly the victim of it's own brilliant writing. The story arc had been so well planned (evidently) that what needed to happen in the finale was pretty much decided. Writing around that is not easy, not easy at all.
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Episode 19 'Letters of Transit' starts to make sense now.

And the bullet hanging around Herietta's neck was the one Walter extracted from Olivia's skull.

However, if that is the future, Does it mean Olivia will ultimately die in season 5?
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I'm afraid I would have written a much different review of this and the previous episode, and...I'd have been so very wrong. Nailed it Tim! Guess that's why you get the big bucks; telling lt like it is while gently bursting our little bubbles in a such an humane manner.



To the statment that they proudly claimed of filming two endings, I say only one was filmed, for clipping off the last snippet to make it right requires no filming whatsoever.



I did love it however, however, because it was Fringe, not quite at its best - but what the hey, our girls live, guy gets the girl, and a girl, as heroes abound and villians are dispatced, either dead or in disgrace...and we get promises of amber in our distant or not so distant futures, in twenty-four years or four months, whichever comes first I suspect. So spot on review...one of your best ever, kudos...
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I agree with the point that this show does seem to be heading in the same direction as the 'Lost' season finale, however, I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing. It just shows that the the creative minds are just going into overdrive trying to piece it all together in some sort of cohesive way. Still an awesome show, even if it is completely out there...

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Oh, god no...I wouldn't wish that catyclysmic disaster on my worst enemy, or even Whitney. If you check your records you'll find that Lost ended its awesomeness at the end of season 5 with total nuclear annhialation, leaving us all slack jawed...
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I have a sneaking suspicion September's that bald kid they found in the abandoned subway. But speculation's for people who have regular enemas. Can't wait for the new season and I hope it's not the last.
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Now that you said that, I think it makes sense... especially considering what Jessica said about him being so worried about Olivia.
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Next season is the last one. It's going to be sad to see it go, but I'm glad that they're going out knowing it will be the last one, so that they can wrap up the stories and give us answers to the remaining questions.
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Fifty bucks the baby will be named Henrietta!.



Okay, where can i get a good pic of that "stasis runes"?? it looked like it'll make a great tattoo!.



Olivia is faster than the observers!i cant wrap my head at that and maybe that is why "they are coming!"...
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After what they have been through: that baby's name better be Lincoln!
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This episode was definitely one of the most "out there" episodes with a lot of the sci-fi elements, so I can easily see where you're coming from. Also, I agree that this episode was a bit predictable because of "Letters of Transit," and simple knowledge about how TV works (it was pretty obvious that Olivia wouldn't stay dead). However, despite those things, I still really enjoyed this episode. It definitely wasn't one of the best season 4 episodes, and was my least favorite finale, but it was a fun episode with a few great moments. My favorite part was when Walter shot Olivia. I did realize he would do that a few seconds before he did, but it was still a very powerful moment seeing him shooting somebody he thinks of as a daughter. Yes, he did already think of the possibility of saving her through the Cortexiphan, but even then, it couldn't have been easy to risk, knowing that something could go wrong and they could lose her. And of course, it was great seeing Peter's reaction to it as well. Anyway, even though this wasn't much of a cliffhanger (especially considering the fact that we saw "Letters of Transit"), but I'm just as excited to see what they do with the next season. The future set up in "Letters of Transit" was a very promising story that I'd love to see explored more, though I'm wondering if we'll have to wait a few episodes before we get back to that story. There are a few story elements that we have to deal with, such as why everyone was in Amber, why Bell was with them, and where Olivia was. This could be something they show in the first few episodes, before going back to the future, they could show these things in flashbacks like on Lost and Person of Interest, or they could simply summarize the events through the characters' dialogue, so they don't waste much time on it. Whatever happens, I'm just glad we're getting the conclusion to the story.
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Can please someone explain this to me: didn't September die a few episodes ago, when he told Peter that his Olivia wasn't that Olivia???
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This episode showed us that the Observers experience time exactly like us: linear. Let me play Walter here: Imagine our timeline as a straight line running from past to present to future *drawing it on chalkboard* Now I'm gonna take the color red and draw this dot right here on some random spot on the line. This red dot belongs to the Observer's timeline and marks an appearance. Now I'm gonna continue making more dots on different spots *draw*. Ok we consider the white line to go linear (from one point to another). Obviously the random dots do NOT form a line, which is why from our POV it seems that they exist out of time. But they don't. How did I paint the dots? One by one. Before I painted the 3rd dot, there was the 2nd etc... So in fact there is an order to their time and if you extract and sort all dots - you get a line.



In short: September didn't die to begin with. He was just "taken". But my point: You can't look at our line with one red dot in the present ("appearance this episode"), point at a dot in the past ("a few episodes ago") and assume that the "past dot" has been painted before the "present dot" just because you refer to the linear line. The line and the dots are independent.

Maybe you want to rewatch and understand why September got shot last episode but appeared in that state several episodes before to Olivia without knowing he would.
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Just to say that time-travel is a bit tricky for some...
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Observers sense of time differs from humans. He gets shot by the hot red head, Olivia tells him you said I die in all futures so he goes off to inquire, cops it and Peter reanimates him using that giant glowing silver anal plug thing for it happen again. I think he's in a paradox of sorts.
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Nop, he didnt and even if he did, it would have matter because that hasn't happen for that September. Time travel is confuse if you are not paying attention!

That September is from a different time than the other. That one wans't shot yet until that moment!
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pretty great finale, but lmost right away I knew that Olivia would have to die. I didn't think Astrid or Olivia would actually be dead though, Astrid was in the future episode and Olivia hadn't had the baby who grows up to be from the future episode so she clearly couldn't have died yet. see the future episode totally ruined any shock these last two episodes could have produced!



The scene with Jessica being reanimated was totally creepy. that must have been a composite shot or something where they pasted each eye and mouth together from seperate shots. BUT CREEPY!



also, I bet the original series finale end they shot was just the hospital scene and it didn't show the last scene with Walter back at the lab.. if it was something different, I'd like to see it too just because. I guess I'll see it in a year or so when I get the complete series Blu-rays :p
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Fingers crossed they'll fool us again and deliver a totally unexpected Season 5.



Or at least change some details of the LoT future. Maybe their child will be a boy. Or that there is a faction of rebel Observers helping the humans etc. The future can always change and LoT is just one of the possibilities.
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I'm proud to say that I waylaid the season 1 finale of Dollhouse, somehow knowing that it would go better with the actual finale, and I was right. But this time my Spidey sense failed me and I watched the future world epi of Fringe immediately, making me much less proud...
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Don't worry Tim. I certainly won't be gunning for you for this review. I am a HUGE Fringe fan. And even I felt disappointed with the season finale. Don't get me wrong there were some nice moments, but overall it was disappointing. I'm so glad that this wasn't the finale episiode, It would have been upsetting for a such a great show to end this way.
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The thing that got most of my curiosity was the way Bell jumped between universes (or not!)

After Bell rings the Bell he does not cross universes, but the ship with all its contents actually does. I'm still baffled.
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No I believe it returns back to ours because it was initially in phase with our universe bell used his cortexephan filled body to travel but unlike Olivia he needs to hit the bell which rings at the frequency of the other universe. Kind of like a road map whereas Olivia can travel freely between.
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Tim I would have agreed with u with all of this if it wasn't for one thing. When the observers spoke with September way earlier in the season they told him that they were the ones who wiped away peter and created the new timeline (and not the machine) trying to fix the one variable that they had interfered with. So in act they are not totally omniscient because they would have known this action was futile. What I'm getting at is that the overall theme that I've been seeing is that the observers now see full well they did almost caused they're existence to be destroyed they decide to control everything and make sure the future is there even if they have to hold the planet captive to ensure that. When u step back and fully examine everything its all been leading to this. The observers have been the ones playing god all along and every time they redirect the future timeline they're course corrections backfire and all roads lead to them never existing in the first place so now there one last shot is to hold the future in captivity. William Bell and Walter would have never played gods had the observers never interfered as long as they stay in what is not there time the cosmic multi verse will ensure there destruction that is true point and what they will have to come to learn the hard way. That is the overall arc and it finally came to me. The observers are the ones who are and now have always been playing god and the laws of the multi verse will never stop ensuring there destruction until they return to they're on time. Please tell me someone else thinks this is what its all about. I LOVE FRINGE SO MUCH FOR SHOWING US THIS
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Now, how come Bell knows so much about the observers?
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Bell may have been close to one of them just like were close to September and may have learned it through them or may have been lurking about when the other observers were keeping a rather unruly observer had to be captured by the other ones. That's the rub, the past of this timeline is so unclear because we are not sure of anything that we haven't been shown and seeing as this timeline is rather new we haven't been shown all that much
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Clearly, that Tim pointed out so perfectly, that he's a Supernatural fan...
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