Fringe: Infinite Possibilities

Fringe

Maybe the whole baseball delay was a good thing, because imagine if we'd had to suffer through a months-long break after the end of tonight's episode, "Back to Where You've Never Been." Originally planned as the midseason finale, this mind-blower rolled credits after grabbing Fringe fans' jaws and slamming them to the ground (more on that later). But thanks to some late-game heroics from professional sports guy David Freese in November, we now only have to wait a week to find out what happens next! That probably saved at least a few Fringe fans from having heart attacks and breaking and entering Fox's HQ to steal the next episode. Thanks, baseball!

"Back to Where You've Never Been" was the type of Fringe episode I've adored ever since the notion of multiple universes was introduced. My nerd thermometer leaks Mercury every time the two universes intermingle. (That previous sentence wasn't meant to be vaguely pornographic, sorry about that.) You'll recall how much I loved this season's second episode, when *our* Fringe Division dragged a man to the other universe in order to stop his alter(nate-universe) ego, who was a serial killer. Seeing the cast of the show bounce back and forth between hairstyles and personalities is like watching high-production pretend time with quality actors.

This time it was Peter, Olivia, and Lincoln crossing over, after Peter came up with the idea to talk to Walternate in order to fix the Machine so he could get back to his own universe/timeline. While they were over there, Olivia and Lincoln figured they could get to the bottom of the imminent war between shapeshifters and their universe by snooping around. But of course, one can't simply walk into Walternate's office, and things got a little complicated as the other universe's Fringe Division wondered what these trespassers from the other universe were up to.

Our Fringe Division agents assumed that Walternate had sent over shapeshifters to start a war, but we (you readers and me) had correctly picked up on the idea several episodes ago that it probably wasn't Walternate who made the new hybrid shapeshifters... assuming Walternate isn't lying. There's a third party involved in this mess, and that third party has something to do with David Robert Jones, our old enemy from Season 1 who was sliced in half by a trans-universe portal (too bad the surprise was kind of ruined from a previous promo). But who does DRJ work for? And is that person of this universe? Or are we holding onto the possibility that there's a third universe? How many shapeshifters are in those tanks? Is this a shapeshifter war against one universe, both universes, or this timeline? Are these guys after Peter? Yeesh! It's time for Walter and Walternate to join noggins and stop these amorphous body snatchers from destroying the existence of everything.

Fringe

And what's up with Broyles selling out Alt-livia and Lincoln to DRJ by letting him know they're coming? That's one of the fun things Fringe gets to play around with in using multiple universes and timelines. Each iteration of each character can be killed, altered willy-nilly, or even, as in the current Broyles' case, turned into a shapeshifter. (He IS a shapeshifter, right? Or is he just a sell-out?)

Only one thing's for certain: The final moments of the episode are the ones we'll all be talking about until next week. Back in the "other-timeline our universe" (nomenclature is getting very difficult, bear with me), Olivia had an impromptu meeting with Mr. September, our favorite gent from the Sexy Observer 2012 calendar. And September, after playing the most annoying game of "I'm going to say everything right as you say it," told Olivia: "I came to tell you. I have looked at all possible futures. And in every one, the result is the same. You have to die." *BRAIN EXPLOSION SOUND!*

Let's break that down a bit, because it was a fantastic scene with enormous implications for the show. Here's my theory: September has been scrambling around time and space trying to make things right. One idea was to erase Peter, which didn't really work, and that's what we've been dealing with in Season 4. Through his adventures bouncing around existence, September has been in this situation with Olivia several times before, and that's how he knows exactly what Olivia is going to say. It doesn't, however, excuse him for being such a jerk by repeating everything she says as if he were your annoying 10-year-old cousin. As for the bullet hole in his chest? Caused by a different Olivia in one of his other visits to this very same scene—an Olivia with less patience and restraint. For bonus points, I hope the writers make it the Olivia we know from Seasons 1, 2, and 3. But why does Olivia have to die?

One thing I keep coming back to is September's "all possible future" phrase. To me, that's very specific wording and confirms what we've suspected for a while: that Fringe is built on the abstract idea that we're not limited to just two universes,and that multiple universes and timelines are concurrently existing with the ones we're witnessing in Season 4. Throughout Season 3 we had concrete evidence of two universes, and in Season 4 Peter was erased. The show wanted us to think we were back in the same universes without Peter, but maybe we've just jumped to one of the other multi-universe scenarios (not necessarily those SAME two universes from Seasons 1-3 but without Peter). Actually I'm not even sure that makes sense or is anything that you didn't already know. I just know that I love it.

"Back to Where You've Never Been Before" was a very strong episode of Fringe and one of this season's best. If it's an indication of things to come (more back-and-forth between the universes, please!), Season 4 is headed in the right direction.

Fringe

Notes from the Other Side:

– It seems like this other universe is full of shapeshifters in positions of power. Brandon, Broyles (we suspect), who else?

– How about that Nissan product placement, eh? Hey, whatever it takes to keep this show on the air. If the Fringe Division wants to wear Burger King logos on their uniforms like NASCAR drivers, so be it!

– How many people are working on Lincoln's hair? It's like four stylists all had an idea for what his hair should look like and they divided up his head, and then each person claimed one section and styled it however they wanted to.


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

Comments (155)
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LOVE LOVE LOVE this show! It always keeps you guessing. What could be better than that? Even though it is frustrating at times.
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I know the scene you are talking about bothcats, I love that reaction from Olivia too! Regarding she did not need the portal. lol
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Besides my prior comment I forgot to note that the dialogue in this episode was fantastic! The early scene between Olivia, Peter& Lincoln- where Peter asks Olivia why she would need the portal since she can cross over anytime herself; the Lincoln having to act like his alternative universe self with the guard; the scene near the end between Walter&Peter; and lastly:



Lincoln: Just out of curiosity, if this thing closes while I'm still crossing through what happens?

Peter: It'll cut ya in half. I killed a guy like that once. Oh, Don't worry he was a bad guy.
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That was a heavy read but FRINGE is one of my favorite brain shows. PERSON OF INTEREST is the other. Love shows with writers that actually have a knack for mystery. This will be one of those shows that will be missed greatly no matter how long it runs. I just hope it doesn't go crazy like LOST towards the end. Long live FRINGE!
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I love the confusion that Fringe puts me in :P Enough said.
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I've only watched Fringe once and will have to check it out again to get into it,it comes on the same time as another new tv sci-fi show ,Emmett North Jr
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Is it possible that Nina is resident at the top of the 'Baddy' chain of command? Or a William Bell from another timeline? Or a bad Walter from another universe OR, GET THIS, another PETER: an EVIL Peter!!! lol
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Soo, 4 Peters, 4 Walters, 4 Livs, 4 Universes :O !!!
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yea so far all the other peters have died long ago... That would be awesome if there were more peters in the future episodes

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no! 1 peter, 4 walters, 4 livs, 4 universes :0

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and 2 Lincolns, 3 if you count the limo. lol
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no, no! 1 Peter. 4 Walters. 4 Olivias. 2 Universes. 2 different Time-lines
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I hope we get at least one more season
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i disagree, it should have two more seasons and a movie! lol

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The top cat in Universal has stated they will continue to make fringe even if FOX drop it, ie, another channel will cover it!

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easy, Fox should drop Idol or move it to Bravo or Lifetime and keep Fringe! lol
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I hope so.
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Me too, this is the most intelligent piece of TV ever
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I thought perhaps September got shot by one of his own for not following the direct order to permanently erase Peter.
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No, the Observers don't have bullets in their guns. He could have been shot by anyone, but not from his own group.
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You don't like Lincoln's hair? I think he looks much hotter with his herrr did!
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Man, all these timelines give me a headache. A beautiful, beautiful headache.
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haha. I know the feeling
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Yeah I believe this isn't the last season of Fringe.



No, Olivia stayed on this side and DID NOT cross over. "Why, when you can just cross over whenever you want?" Peter said something just like this in that last episode to Olivia, and she had no clue what he was talking about.

When the observers removed Peter from the timeline thats the part where everything got messy and why theres no neat way to see what really happened so far.

Walternate and Peter agreed that Peter wasn't his real son......so wait, our peter died, the peter we know is Walternates son and is who we have known the whole time so far until now. So who is the Peter in this season? Possibly another universe but not thinking that way because peter keeps talking and trying to get back to his timeline as Walternates son right? Im rambling so please comment back whether or not im right or wrong about this one.



And olivia did start the episode by being on a leave for her migraine.... this would answer someones comment previously about how they didn't say anything about it. yet they did touch on it a little after peter woke up from his dream.
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I meant completely agree with CharmedOneP391, wrong "reply" button :)
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Completely agree with that.

Peter IS Walternate's son, so they are both wrong. Or they meant like "emiotionally" not his son (ergo - he's Walter's).



Anyway, Peter's quest to return home is pointless, I think. He's here already.



Mr September changed only 1 moment in history, the night he initially saved Peter. At the end of season 3 Mr September undid that (as CharmedOneP391 mentioned, job not finished).



And the consequences of this are the current situation: Walter's mental state, Olivia closenesss, her free-universe-travel-pass got revoked, Alter-Broyles alive and so on :)
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"...Peter's quest to return home is pointless, I think. He's here already."



I'm not so sure about that. If Peter was already home all he'd have to do would be to refresh the memories of Walter and his friends and then they'd remember everything.



But, at the start of season 4 we're led to believe that we're dealing with a kind of 'Butterfly Effect' wherein Peter never existed as an adult because he fell through the ice and drowned as a child. People cannot remember him using the 'machine' to solve the problem with the anomalies because it never happened either. It follows that the memory of his adult existence never had to be 'erased' because there were no memories in the first place.



Therefore, Peter couldn't be home or rather "...here already." For that to happen and to reverse the Butterfly Effect, September would have to go back in time and save him from drowning...again.



To do so would initiate the problem with the anomalies all over again requiring the final solution to save both Universes, maybe an entirely different one, like Olivia's death...or maybe, Peter discovers a way to use the machine that doesn't require the destruction of one or both of the Universes.

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Season 4 Peter is the same Peter we've known from seasons 1-3. Walternate is his biological father..he just thinks otherwise because he thinks he was pulled out of his timeline. So Peter is suggesting that timelines and universes are different in Fringe (we don't actually know 100%)



He thinks the machine removed him from his original "timeline". He doesn't know the Observers erased him or started to erase him (the job wasn't finished in 'Neither Here Nor There').
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Tried to read all the theories you guys have going on and i just gave up, my brain got so confused :D
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I LOVE this show, and certainly I hope it never ends...
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Just in case nobody else realizes this: Fringe is not as close to cancellation as everyone seems to think. If you read the full article from Fox's TCA panel, it's pretty clear that Kevin Reilly still has faith in Abrams, Pinkner and Wyman and the rest of the writing staff. Abrams confirmed that Pinkner and Wyman are ready to wrap up the show with season 5 and since we're not even halfway thru this season's 22 episode run, that gives the writers plenty of time to figure out how to wrap up the show with a 13 episode season 5. And I have all the faith in the world that Fox will be smart enough to make that happen. Networks are getting smarter when it comes to cult-favorite-genre-shows. Chuck's ratings dropped even more sharply than Fringe but NBC allowed them 13 episodes to wrap up their plotlines. Fox knows that if they cancel Fringe before it gets to wrap up it will hurt future DVD sales because NO ONE wants to buy a show where so much story has been built up and never gets resolved. They will take inspiration from NBC and greenlight season 5 for 13 episodes. The pace of those episodes will be faster than light. Fans will be reeling from all the final reveals and Fringe will be remembered as the greatest genre show yet, repairing Fox's reputation with us sci-fi geeks who will finally forgive them for Firefly's horrible scheduling and untimely demise and a golden era of TV will begin where reality shows are slowly pushed aside as viewers actually demand depth in character and story and realize genre shows have almost always had what everyone looks for in quality entertainment. Hmmm... Well, that last part will probably never happen. BUT I'm calling it right now: 13 episode 5th season because Fox loves the show and because Anna Torv is related to Rupert Murdoch. And anybody who pisses off Murdoch or his family will inevitably get a pair of lead shoes...
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You have faith in Fox? Why?
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believe me I agree with you I am desperately hoping for a season 5. but NBC is in MUCH worse a state than FOX. Also FOX doesn't care if Fringe's future DVD sales are hurt by cancellation because they don't receive any money for the DVD sales, Warner Bros. does.



But you're right...Reilly pretty much said the renewal is "a Peter Roth issue" who is the chief exec of Warner Bros TV. When Roth commented on what Reilly said, he said "we (WB) have no plans to end the show this season"



But if FOX ultimately doesn't want to air Fringe anymore..it's over. Unless WB can find another network that will air Fringe. I'd suggest CW cuz of WB connections or FX cuz of FOX connections. But a network change is rare for a SciFi show...but then again...BTVS
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They should pair Fringe with new show Touch but not on Wednesday or Thursdays. Monday is safer, it only has to compete with CBS comedies and whatever ABC has [nothing good b4 Castle]no idea what NBC has on Mondays. Gave up after Event got yanked. lol
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This show needs a 5th season to fully wrap things up. I think Peter will get back to the original timeline in the season finale, leaving next season to carry on from where 'the day we died' left off. One can hope that fox are that generous!
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i thought Olivia didnt cross..she was left at the Opera house as a "guard"...



I dont think this is the last we will see of September...



Tim, i hope all those "Four stylists" will keep on working on Lincoln hair..I love it.



Heck! i love all Lincolns...across universes...beyond timelines!.
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Sad day for television if Fringe gets canceled. SIX SEASONS AND A MOVIE!
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I want the old Fringe back, this alternate Universe stuff is becoming boring.
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oh c'mon. Though I'll agree that Fringe is about it's characters, the characters revolve around the mysteries of the alternate universe. Season 4 is just frustrating to watch because we don't know the answers and its a big blob of not knowing right now. Think back to season 3, where a lot of people stopped watching Fringe, the season didn't make complete sense until the season finale aired. Yes it created tons of more questions for season 4, it did complete season 3 making the machine and first people easier to understand
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Well this alternate Universe thing would maybe work if they were better actors, I find it annoying to watch so far. Don't think I'll continue, even though I have been a fan from the start.
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So goodbye!

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you thought the first 3 seasons had better actors? why give up now?
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I'm waiting for Victoria to find Bobby in the shower and it all be a dream. Oh, wait, that was Dallas. Ok, so how about Olivia in the shower and Peter finds out it was all a dream. Then we will realize that Season 4 was all a dream and never existed.
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Great review. Thanks.

I think one problem is how do you distinguish an alternate timeline from an alternate universe. One can argue that it's one and the same, making Season 4s the third universe we know of. If you however chose to believe that an alternate timeline is something very different from an alternate universe we would be in the right universe but in an Back-to-the-Future messed up one.

It's been a while but I thought Observers can't be killed by bullets.

And about the ninja men i have forgotten completely. What was that all about.

But seriously, do you think Season 4 is an alternate timeline or an alternate universe. Or are they the same thing. I know it's not that important of a question, but philosophical ones rarely are.
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Wasn't it August who was killed by one or more bullets saving a young girl?
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first off..Great episode.



I think in Fringe an alternate timeline and an alternate universe are not the same thing. Yes, Peter keeps saying he needs to reset the machine's "matrix" and get back to his timeline..this is because Peter just assumes that the machine is what did this. He doesn't know that The Observers plucked him out of the timeline of our PrimeBlue and AltRed universes causing in the MergedAmber season 4.



I just want to know WHY? and WHO? and HOW?

-Why did The Observer first distract Walternate from realizing Peter's cure in 1985 which directly leads to Walter travelling over to AltRed and stealing Peter and causing The Pattern?

-once Peter merges the two worlds by building a bridge to stop the increasing damage to both universes WHY do the Observers erase him from time because he never existed?



They can't be telling us that that Season 4 is the original timeline, because if the observer never would've mettled in, then Walternate would've saved Peter and he would've grown up and Walter wouldn't have done it.

Is this where the Paradox comes in? Because he needed to meet Olivia for some reason? So she could help him get into the machine to merge the two worlds? Would he had just destroyed the PrimeBlue world if it were backwards? If he grew up in AltRed?



ugh...Fringe. I wish you better ratings. I love a good complex-crazy-makes no sense half the time (but does if you overthink it) story. Hate to see it on the chopping block for cancellation.
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If this Olivia can't cross between universes, then if follows she can't open the machine for Peter anyway.



I have no idea where all of this is leading.
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The Observers have said that Walternate finding the cure was an important moment worth documenting, so I'm guessing since they've already decided on it being historically important, then there is no way around the consequences of said observation in Walternate's lab. I suppose the difference between September interfering at the lab and at Reiden lake is that the latter was his choice while the first was his duty.



-Second question may have 2 answers. First, based on the comic books, one of the reasons is that Peter chose neither of the two universes to destroy and made both sides equal. In doing so, he had to remove himself (or rather, he was prepared for the Observers to remove him) from the equation so that balance could be restored and there would be no middle man in the collision. Another reason may be the Observers playing with the timeline to make it "perfect" in their eyes.



There's also an implication that eventually Our Side would still create a portal to the Other Side, just with a different purpose, whether through scientific inquiry, military, or curiosity. This was examined in one of the Fringe graphic novels as well.
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Also, can someone remind me, was Robert David Jones the guy in S1 that had the blinking lights he wanted Olive to shut off with her mind or a bomb would explode? I think I started to forget plot points over the hiatus.
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Yes, David Robert Jones was that guy, and the episode was "Ability".
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When Walternate zapped the scientist-shifter, didn't see that one coming. Gah, Fringe has been off the air too long. I find it hard to keep up with the multi-verse when watching on a regular basis. After a zillion week break; things seem even more confusing. Linc's hair WAS odd this time (both of them). Back in S1-3 it seemed that "our" Linc had one hairstyle and "other" Linc had a different set hairstyle. Reading all the great comments here; y'all articulate the multi-verse/timeline/whatever better than I can. TrevPlatt had a great outline of plot possibilities. I'm personally leaning more towards the "S4 universes are completely different than S1-3 and , therefore follow a different timeline" scenario, but since it's Fringe...anything goes.
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Haven't read all the comments, so apologies if this has been mentioned already. I think this could possibly link back to Season 1 where Olivia "jumps" to another universe where the city is burning and "He is here!" is written on a building. Not sure if it's DRJ that's being referred to or someone else, but I think there's a connection here.
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how about the guy from olivia's dream (the one where peter has to go into the house and save the little olivia/CGI)
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"that's the man who kills me." (mr.x)
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I was thinking the same thing about nissan, some money to keep the show on!!

Maybe this Olivia needs to die so Peter can get back to his timeline?
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I'm more of a sideways fan of Fringe (in that I don't care about Olivia or Peter, and I care even less about Olivia *and* Peter), but this may be the best episode I've seen at least this season.



I'm still assuming these universes are actually Peter's and they don't remember him after he was erased, otherwise this is all for nothing, progression-wise, and that would piss off pretty much everyone but me. But if that's true, then Olivia is ours and there's no way she can get killed, so that angle seems kind of boring.



I just wonder how things will settle once Peter settles. If he stays where he is and everyone finally remembers him, then everyone he killed and everyone who died around him will be gone, but Fauxlivia's kid will be back. Stuff like that. If Peter actually is in two different universes, then again, this is all for nothing, and a waste of time that could've been spent on his and Olivia's epic romance.



There might be a fanservice-friendly third option. Peter could somehow return, and seal the rift between the first two universes by merging them into one. Walter could be less crazy but more of a dick, Olivia could have Peter's kid, a red streak in her hair, and her mom could be alive, a minority could appear on some of our paper money, we could experience the non-flammable joy of helium dirigible transportation, and the Red and Green Lanterns could be...Brown?



Anyway, I don't expect to like how this all ends, but this episode was definitely a high point along the way.
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Another thing I wanted to add was part of the reason I liked this episode so much was his interaction with Mom #4. I liked the moment they shared more for her than for him, but it was good stuff. It was another opportunity to show that while Peter's just passing through, there are real people in all these universes, with lives, loves, and losses.
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I also think they are the same 2 universes just changed when peter was removed. Also I believe Alt-Broyles is still dead although not from being chopped up to cross Olivia over, but from shape shifter subterfuge.
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I really hope Broyles isn't a shapeshifter. One of the many things that I don't like about Fringe is that half the character plot twists involve shapeshifters and alternate versions of the same person. The *actual* characters hardly ever do anything differently. It dilutes character progression, imo, much like what we've been going through with an entirely new set of characters this season.
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I completely agree with you. Must be fun for the actors, but for people who enjoy character development, it kind of sucks.
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R.I.P. September, I knew you would only follow August ...for you always do.
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Nice word play!
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Peter killed DRJ when DRJ was trying to cross over to the other universe. However, since Peter never existed, DRJ was actually successful in crossing over. That part isn't too complicated- I don't think we need to worry about him working for a third universe or anything like that (though anything is possible).
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There should of course also be another DRJ on the other side.After all There's more than one of everything....and everyone.
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I loved the episode, but I still want Charlie back, Charlie is awesome!!!
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I miss Charlie, Scarlie and his two red haired wives!
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yeah it was good but didnt continue with the last episode.. agreed with azgr2792
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wait a minute...wasnt the episode before this the one where olivia was knocked out by ninas men? did they explain this at all??
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I believe the migraines are directly caused by these injections.



And my theory is that these injections (among other things) prevent Olivia from crossing over using her natural cortexifan-related skills like she did in the blue universe.
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i think nina's actively trying to cultivate her powers, not supress them. in this timeline olive never finished the cortexifan trials, as she ran away in the aftermath of the fire she caused. if you look closely at the vials of the drugs injected into olivia at the end of wallflower, the labels identify them as cortexifan.
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I thought about that. I guess this Nina has a cortexifan that is not toxic to adults.



Well not completely toxic as the migraines suggest it is no picnic, either.
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I agree that Nina's cultivating Olivia's powers. I believe she raised Olivia much like a farmer raises a pig or a turkey for holiday slaughter. Olivia's powers are likely what's supposed to kill her (and Nina is likely fully aware of that), but Olivia'll have to use them for the good of both universes.
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It's basically like a lot of Fringe's plot threads, they don't answer them right away much like the LSD man from last season. Now with the Observer's warning, we're finally revisiting it. The injections are in the same category, but I'm sure we'll find out why even sooner.
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Olivia was home treating her migraine at the beginning of the episode and since Nina wasn't present, I don't see how anyone could explain it so soon. Maybe in a few more episodes.
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I have to disagree with it being a good thing that this episode didn't air as a mid-season finale. It may have made it a lot easier for loyal fans to wait for the second half of the season, but what about people on the fence. Some people might decide whether it's worth coming back to the series based on the way they leave things off with the mid-season finale. A strong episode, and a good cliff-hanger will easily draw more people back than a weaker episode (the weakest of the season IMO). And then there are the people who love the show, but haven't really been that into this season as a whole. Having an episode like this one might have actually given them hope for the latter half of the season, and had them excited. But the mid-season finale that they actually had? It understandably gave them fuel for their dislike of the season as a whole, and a few of them might have given up on the show, relying on the mid-season finale to give them a reason to love the show again, and instead getting what might have felt like a slap in the face. Don't get me wrong, I don't think that episode was terrible. It was still good, but it was easily the weakest of an otherwise great season IMO. This episode, on the other hand, did a fantastic job of handling the character conflict and the bigger issues of the season, bringing a lot of things together while giving the season a new direction to take off from. Obviously there will still be people who don't care for this season, since you can't please everybody, but it would have helped to pull some of the people who were on the fence, or were already losing interest back for a potentially great second half. Instead, from what I've heard, this episode recieved one of the lowest ratings of the series, and I think that the mid-season finale was one of the main contributing factors of that. Hopefully things pick up a bit now, but considering the potential cancelation, I can't help worrying.
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I forgot to mention some things while going on that rant. :P First of all, I'm so glad to see more interactions between the universes. I can't really say I've "missed" it, since I've been loving this season so much as it is that I wouldn't have changed a thing (except to make this the mid-season finale), but it was one of the main things I was hoping to see more of in future episodes. They set up the connection early in the season, so it seems kind of strange that they would wait so long to explore it more. I loved the interactions between the characters, including Lincoln's first meeting with the other side, especially his alternate self. And I also loved seeing Peter re-evaluate his views on overybody due to their actions (Lincoln going through with Olivia's original plans, and Walternate reaching out to him). And I also loved the ending, since it seems to be bringing things back to the picture of the man who's going to kill Olivia. That story was one of the biggest worries I had about this switch in the timeline. I didn't know how, or when they'd come back to it. I thought that, if they did, it might not be for a while, and they may wait until they the next season, even if that season's existence is still uncertain. So it's a relief to know that they seem to be bringing it back. Also, I'm curious to see more about this whole shapeshifter infiltration. Obviously this isn't the first time where we've seen something like this, but none of the other times went as far as this seems to be going, with Brandon and probably Broyles being shapeshifters, who knows who else might be one?
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broyles must have been replaced by a shapeshifter, i cant think of any other reason why he would sell out lincoln and olivia. i also cant shake this niggling feeling that nina's a shapeshifter too.
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this show is the proverbial "creme de la creme" of TV.
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Absolutely
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There are so many ways of awesome about this show.



I disagree about who shot September. I don't think OliviaOriginal shot him. I think FauxliviaOriginal shot him. Thus when he appears to OliviaNew, he has the bullet-hole. But he's vanished, who knows, maybe he's gone to go tell FauxliviaNew the same thing? I think I'm keeping them all straight. Screw it. Anna Torv, fantastic. Anyway, the return of David Robert Jones is more awesome. I agree with the above in whatever keeps this show on the air. I'd be fine if they pasted a taco bell logo in the bottom corner of entire episodes. Oh so awesome. Also, if FOX doesn't renew the show, is there any chance at all that SyFy would be interested in it? I mean, it's only exactly the sort of thing that SyFY SHOULD be about. Science Fiction. But whatever, I'm just a stupid fan, not a tv channel show runner. (Though to be fair to FOX, they do seem to be trying their best to keep the show, and indeed gave it at least one more season than I expected).
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I knew what he was going to say, the moment 'I looked in every other universe' passed his lips. Wasn't the same hinted (or outright said) in the cartoon episode? ;)



And what's with tv.com? Since they changed the design, I can't comment with facebook. Always get page-not-found error. :(:(
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So, TV.com Fringe fans, did you participate in the #CrossTheLine campaign and Getglue campaign on Friday? Fringe was trending in both places, so it was quite a success, promotion-wise. Hopefully, we can do it for 4.09 too. Of course, we still need lots of people to watch live, but if you could spare a moment, tweet #EnemyofMyEnemy (starting at 7pm Friday) and check into Getglue!
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"Mr. September" is one of my favourite characters. Man alive, I love this show. If it doesn't survive for at least another season, I'm writing some pretty strongly worded letters. Don't think I won't! They might even have the words "disgrace", and "outrage". I'd be a woman on the edge!
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I don't think at all that we are looking at 2 other different universes. Peter keeps saying and saying that this is another timeline, not another universe.



It's just like in Back to the future. Martin goes back in time, he changes "something" that happened in "the past" and when he comes back to his present it is not the same as before because he changed it when he changed the past. There is never another universe in play.

The difference in here is that the "something" that changed is in fact Peter dying when he and Walter fall into the lake. So from now on, since Peter has died, Peter can't exist in the present.



For some reason that isn't explained (or that I didn't get) Peter doesn't totally disappear when that "something" is changed. Instead, he lives in some other place, a kind of a limbo if you wish, and he keeps getting back in sort of looping-echoes in Olivia and Walter's mind.

Peter living in this different timeline-universe (season 4) is actually a paradox, since he is dead in this timeline.

So that's why -I believe- September is told to erase Peter completly (see s03e22 "The day we die"), but for another reason that isn't explained he decides not to.



Then, and again not knowing how, Peter "gets out of the limbo" and comes back to the same universe, only that now the timeline has changed and nobody remembers him.



And that's how we are in the same universe where Peter seems to be dead for everyone, yet he's there and he is not in some other universe. He is a kind of a paradox. Actually, the whole thing is a paradox (since the Machine invention, again see s03e22).



Am I making any sense?

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an alternate timeline... is the same as an alternate universe. because they are both created by events that can happen, and did happen, but didn't.



The "paradox" of the Machine can be viewed as this: imagine a spring on its side. When you look at it and follow it, it goes up and down as it spirals across. Every time it goes up... is a universe's time flowing forward. Every time it goes down, is the Machine being sent "back in time." Basically, each time it's sent "back" it becomes part of a different timeline.



there is a theory that time travel, in the truest sense, is NOT possible. But travelling across universes is, it during this crossing that you travel "back" or "forward" in time.
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I never said that time travel was possible and I don't know where did you get that travelling across universes is. Anyway, if alternate timelines and alternate universe are the same, how come traveling between universes and time traveling are not? :\



This is an epic discussion, but i think alternate timeline is not the same as an alternate universe.

This is what I think, and please correct me if you find my mistake.



Speaking in terms of quantum mechanics, we can say that if alternate universes exist, they can be think as being 'ramificated' from an original one (and not created spontaneously) each time a stochastic (random) quantum process happens. The typical example is the dice' sixth possibles ways of falling corresponding to 6 different universes, right? The time here is fixed to the moment that the dice falls, and the different universes arising just from the different possibilities of a matter's (dice) configuration.

Time gives us a sequence of static events. Then a timeline spliting would be a consequence and not a cause of the universe's spliting.

So there is a "one way implication":

alternate universe => (then) alternate timeline.



I don't see how we can explain the other way around. That's why I don't believe they are the same thing.



Regarding to your comment on the "paradox" of the Machine, I didn't get it. My english's not that good and I can't seem to understand what you mean by "spring" (since they are like 100 of different meanings in the dictionary).





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by spring, he means the silver spiral thing inside your pen/on a trampoline.



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I got lost and confused with this episode. At the end of season 3 the other side was "supposedly" destroyed. Then, how can the other side exist again?. Is that another other side?
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That was only in the future Peter wanted to change. When Peter was about to destroy the alternate universe, he caught a glimpse into the future and saw Olivia dying in the hands of Walternate, which he clearly didn't want. So, learning from Walter that both sides had to survive in order to balance AND also save Olivia's life, Peter decided to bridge the 2 universes.
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No, they weren't destroyed. Peter created a permanent bridge between them.
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maybe they are throwing the death of Olivia out there as an end to the show.. or maybe to intrigue the decision-makers so they'll keep it on the air. Either way, poor Peter has had a crappy couple of seasons. I do love his optimism that he will find his way back (as long as a Walter helps him though).
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I'm very disappointed that this great show is on the ropes, it deserves better. Seemed like forever from this episode and the last and it was a great one. Now we have to worry about what happens on the show as well as the show's fate itself. It's just too much. And there is virtually nothing we can do about it. Sad....
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I had to do a double take on the Nissan Leaf placement. When Olivia says they have lots of juice or range or whatever, I was like, "That had to be paid for."
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Thought the scenes between peter and Walternate were brilliant, especially the one in which Walternate asks peter for help
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Regarding the universes:

I think that we are still seeing the two same universes as before. Simply the current ones are with Peter erased from existence, so things changed. Because of this, I think that Peter's quest to get home is pointless since he is home already, the home just hot redecorated (I'm crappy at metaphors). I think that even the so-called-timeline is the same. It just got 'edited' a bit. My point is - the world (of the blue and the red universes) we saw in seasons 1-3 is gone.

My reasoning is simple: we were never given any indication that these might be two completely different universes. Simple as that. I do believe there are other universes, but there is a connection between the red and the blue and the story in Fringe is told from the perspective of these two universes. Doesn't mean there's no yellow, orange, brown or whatever universe out there :)

My second point is that there would be no sense for the writers to make these universes number 3 and 4. Because when they eventually reveal it or even hint it, viewers would loose interest. We wouldn't the connection we though we had. We love the characters from Universes 1 and 2, so the ones in 3 and 4 are completely different people we have no connection with. No benefits come out of this. Maybe not anger, but disappointment would follow. At least that's what I believe :)
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I have the same impression. I don't think Peter will ever be able to go back to his original timeline; if it were a completely different universe/timeline, Walter wouldn't have had visions nor Olivia would have had dreams about Peter. That's why I think Walternate is lying too; he still resents our Water stealing his son - that's why he would want revenge.
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Exactly. But then Peter should stop this "going back to MY universe" thing. Maybe he is afraid of saying "I need to alter the timeline to be appreciated..."

Poor Peter - the world from seas 1-3 is gone and exists only in Peters head - and in ours ...
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Fringe is awesome and it left me speechless.

Like Tim I was fascinated about Lincoln s hair - back and front completely different in each universe !

And the way Anna Torv was walking as Alt-livia reminded me instantly of Jax in SoA, anyone else noticed ? They should make a comedy with these two some far day in the future ...

Not so sure about the third - "our" - universe: Peter talks about "his" universe, but I think he means "his" timeline. DRJ, non-Crotaxofin(?)-Olivia, broken Walter etc - isnt that explained by the missing interference of September and Peters death in the lake ? Because if NOT we would have 4 - 5 universes now - the "old" ones (1+2), and now the 2 dead-Peter-universes and maybe the DJR "evil" universe - I dunno... anyway its just great.
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The Jaxwalk is easy: just slip on a pair of burlap underwear and ride on a horse for a good 50 miles.
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Great episode and a nice set-up for the rest of the season. I'm also a huge fan of the Fringe episodes that have the two worlds together.
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Really ??? REALLY DIRECTOR YOUR going with Olivia DEAD FFS how many times y have to understand that killing one of the main charchters is not cool SPECIALLY THE FEMALE ONE !
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Okay my brain went into spasms from the last moments of this episode .Wow and Wow. Fringe never disappoints, perhaps if Fox has to cancel it could continue as a franchise like they tried with X-Files.

Oh the wonder of possibilities :)
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BTW, did anyone notice the the little boy's mom was reading American Topographic magazine instead of National Geographic?
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I didn't realize until I saw September shot that I really like that character. At this point I think I am more attached to him than Olivia and Peter. I really hope he doesn't die. Secretly he is the star of the show (I mean he is kinda pulling all the strings and knows as much as the audience).
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