"Imagine If… Our Fringe Team Were Criminals!" (BEYOND THE FRINGE chapter #4B)

As this comic opens, we see that Peter has a penthouse located in New York City. He seems to be quite the wealthy heartbreaker, but we learn that he is still in love with Olivia, who broke up with him at some point in the past. It becomes apparent, however, that he is still in love with her and is still sulking because of the fact that he lost her, and he sees something on TV that gives him an idea as to how to win her back. On the TV, there is a man talking about an art exhibit, and Peter has an epiphany; he knows how to earn Olivia back. He convinces Walter to help him pull a theft of a painting off and then the two of them convince Olivia, who is, at first, very hesitant but then finally complies. She is very different in this universe, not quite as shut-off and a lot more shifty. I can't see the Olivia in the Blueverse on the TV series agreeing to steal anything. I love how Astrid is a racecar driver, and I also noticed that Broyles (who is a police chief)' first name is spelled wrong; while it should be Phillip, it is spelled as Philip. Now, this could either be a print error or it could have been done intentionally, and I suggest the latter because it could be that that is the spelling of his name in this universe. After all, on the TV series, Manhattan is spelled as Manhatan over there in the Redverse. We see Peter shirtless at one point, and I only bring that up because he is apparently extremely ripped in this universe; we have seen him shirtless on the TV series before, and he was nowhere near as ripped as he is in this comic, but I suppose that that is a rather trivial observation to make.

At one point, it is also stated that Peter did ballet, and I'm wondering if he really did or if that was supposed to be a joke; I wasn't sure. At another point, Peter says that he was being watched, and that really made me wonder if that was true and that he was being watched by the Observers. There is one point on the TV series during season 1 that Walter says that he was once convinced that he was being watched, something that was dismissed by others as paranoia, but then, we see at the very end of the "Fracture" (2.03) episode that the Observers were, indeed, following him and taking photographs of him. Olivia is apparently a good shot regardless of what universe she's in, even though "Olivia" (3.01) established that on the TV series, only Redverse Liv is a good shot despite the ulterior evidence that suggests that Blueverse Liv is very much so, as well. The painting resurrects the Fringe motif of white tulips; the first time that it is mentioned, it is referred to as Girl in Tulip Field, and the second time that it is mentioned, it is referred to as Girl in Tulips. Is this an error, or does the painting have two different titles? Perhaps, it was simply abbreviated the second time that it was mentioned. In closing, I have to admit that I don't really care much for this comic. It was just silly and even for a comic that takes place in a separate universe, completely unnecessary. While it can definitely be argued that the same is true of the superhero comic, that was much more entertaining; I didn't take much from this and give it 5 station wagons.

The Fringe Matters Podcast: episode 3 - "In Which I Discuss the Orange 'Timeline' and the Origin of the Observers"

In the third episode of the Fringe Matters Podcast, I (Christopher) run the show solo as I discuss the differences between the previous "timeline" and the new orange one, Peter's journey to get home, the return of Jones, and, of course, the latest revelation - the origin of the Observers and the remaining questions that that answer does not answer for us. Please, send all theories, questions, and/or comments to fringematters@gmail.com; your feedback is valued highly and will be shared in our next episode.

"The End of All Things" (4.14)

I am really happy with this episode; it is quite possibly the best episode of the series so far (next to "Over There") because finally, we find out who the Observers are and why they're here, which is something for which I have been anxious since we first personally meet September in the flesh. Speaking of which, is it just me or does one of the Observers look like the Child from "Inner Child" (1.15)? I am referring to the one who first speaks to December, asking if they know why September didn't erase Peter like he was supposed to; I don't see how he could have aged so quickly (the character that is; I know that that is not the same actor, obviously). I'd also have to watch the scene in "Neither Here nor There" (4.01) to find out if the Observer that's credited as January is the same actor because I know that we speculated very early on that the Child may have been January. This episode has so many rewarding aspects; obviously, we have Jones once again, and he and Olivia have some really rewarding scenes together, such as when Olivia says that they've already met, and Jones seems amused. I also adore the scene during which Olivia causes all of the lights to spark, and when Jones asks her what she's doing, she says, "I'm doing what you wanted; I'm turning on the lights." You have to love her.

Back in season 1, Jones wanted Olivia to turn the lights off, not on, but it's possible that that is another way that the writers used to signify differences in this timeline, although I think that it's a lot more possible that she can turn lights on and off. I am so happy that we see the light box again because unless I'm mistaken, we haven't seen it since "The Road Not Taken" (1.19). It's clear to me that Jones isn't aware that the timeline has been altered, and I say that because when Olivia says that they've already met and one of Jones' henchmen suggests that it's a side effect, Jones says, "She's not the first to say that to me." That sounds like a dismissal to me; it sounds like, "No, if it were just her, I might consider it, but it isn't just her." It's clear that Jones is taking advantage of Olivia's empathetic strength, which reminds me a lot of ALIAS; if you've ever seen that series (which if you haven't, you should), then you know that Sydney also had a high propensity to feel empathy toward others, and the "bad guys" would sometimes take advantage of that; they knew that she would sooner cooperate if they tortured someone else (even if it was someone she didn't know) than if they hurt her. Jones tells Olivia that every creature needs incentive and motivation to accomplish a task, so that makes me wonder what that was back in season 1; did she have one?

Olivia, in this episode, is so good, and I don't mean good as in the opposite of evil; I mean that she is immensely clever and resourceful, and saying that Anna Torv is an incredible actress is a serious understatement. She talks to Nina, asking her to help her remember their relationship, and we learn later that she suspected that Nina wasn't Blueverse Nina, so she tested her, and she manipulated her and Jones so that she could have Peter there to help her escape. I knew very early on that Nina was not Blueverse Nina; the writers love pulling fast ones on us, so I strongly suspected that the Nina in the Blueverse that was being interrogated by Broyles and Lincoln, swearing up and down that she was innocent was telling the truth, and I was right. I find it odd, though, how Nina says that there is no other explanation regarding her implication than that there was a Shapeshifter involved because they're aware of the Redverse; the Shapeshifters come from there, and obviously, there are doubles over there. Don't get me wrong; they've never encountered Meana (named by Blair herself) before, so they may have assumed that she didn't exist, but that, to me, seems like a premature assumption, and I'm very surprised that no one suggests the possibility, especially since it had happened before to Olivia.

Like I said, Anna is a superb actress; when she pretends to ask for Nina's help remembering their relationship, Nina says that eventually, while she was still a child, she stopped calling Nina Ms. Sharp and started calling her Nina, and we find out later that that wasn't true, that she stopped calling her Ms. Sharp when she graduated from high school, and when Nina says this, you can clearly see the look of disappointment in Olivia's eyes as she realizes that she was right about Nina, that she isn't her Nina. After this is all realized and before Nina and Jones escape, Jones says to Olivia, "Your love for this man must be something quite profound," so I wonder if they will try this again, try igniting Olivia's emotions by threatening Peter. The ending of the episode is heartbreaking, but I told people not to worry; I told them it was bound just to be a temporary obstacle, that the two of them would be back together soon, and now that we have seen "A Short Story About Love" (4.15) and "Nothing as It Seems" (4.16), we know that that is true. It seems sort of like a reversed "Marionette" (3.09) scene, except Peter is calling it quits with Olivia instead of the other way around, and, of course, the situation is different, and Lincoln is now angry with Peter because he's interested in Olivia, and he's losing her; he must be really angry because Peter once told him that he will not be a problem because that is not his Olivia.

We were thrown a bit of a curveball this week because the screen showing the mental link between Peter and September identifies September as Mr. X, and Ari Margolis threw that curveball to us, as well, since he showed us that clip in the promo, leading us to believe that the notorious Mr. X from "Lysergic Acid Diethylamide" (3.19) would be a factor in this episode, something that is not true; it's most likely just that Walter, not knowing what to call September, identified him as Mr. X. I absolutely love the scene between Peter and September within September's mind, and this is when we finally learn who the Observers are; it seems to be part of a ship, and since we now know that the Observers are from the future, it's possible that they travel through space, much like the Star Trek future, which is only a few centuries forward. We learn that the Observers are a group of scientists that come from a possible future of humanity that are trying to observe their beginnings. Ultimately, I'm satisfied with that explanation, but I definitely still want more. Why are they hairless? What is the weird code in which they write? How do they catch bullets? Is the Child from "Inner Child" (1.15) an Observer? If so, why was he abandoned, and why didn't he age? Why don't they taste much of anything? How is Mosley connected to them? We still need those answers, and I really hope that we get them.

We also learn that Henry being born to Redverse Olivia was not supposed to have happened, and that leads us to wonder why. Does (or did, for that matter) Henry have (had?) special powers? Is Olivia technically the first Observer, with Henry (or whatever his/her name should have been) being the first lineage to the Observers, or are the Observers an anomaly, the result of Henry having been born to Redverse Olivia? Are the Observers willing to sacrifice themselves, everyone other than September, that is? That doesn't make a whole lot of sense because Redverse Olivia doesn't have superhuman powers, but I don't know how else to explain the Observers wanting to get rid of Peter. September definitely has different motives than the other Observers, as he tells Peter that Peter needs to be with Blueverse Olivia, even though if he had never intervened (which he apparently wasn't supposed to have done), they probably never would have met; depending on which interference you refer to, either Peter would have been cured and would have lived his life over there, or he would have died in the lake. September says that the Observers can travel within and outside of time, and I'm not sure what that means, and apparently, Walter, in Peter's original timeline, told Peter that the Observers have the same physiology as humans, which I don't remember; in fact, he definitely tells Peter near the end of "The Firefly" (3.10) that they are not human, and I don't understand why September thinks that Peter is important even though the other Observers apparently don't. I'm so happy that my VHS/cassette tape analogy was right on the money, and I may treat myself to a sprinkle sandwich (but not really); I give this episode 10 territorial Lincolns.

"A Better Human Being" (4.13)


"A Better Human Being" is yet another really great episode of Fringe, and this is where it's becoming obvious to me that this season is going to end up being, overall, satisfying, possibly even on par with season 2. Before this episode even aired, I had a suspicion that Olivia would find out about the Cortexiphan injections, and that was for two reasons. Firstly, I knew that Nian was going to be in the episode, and secondly, I knew from the press revelation that Olivia was going to encounter "some shocking revelations" (the press releases are almost always extremely vague to the point of not really even being pertinent to the specific episode). However, while Olivia doesn't discover the truth, exactly, Walter and Lincoln do, so I guess that I was sort of right. It's funny, too, because at an early point during the episode, I was wondering why the Cortexiphan wasn't showing up on the brain scan, since early during the third season, Walternate and Redverse Brandon detected it on a brain scan, and don't get me wrong, I know that the technology is further advanced in the Redverse, but you'd still think that it would show up, and I was a step ahead of the episode because sure enough, it does show up later in the episode, which made me happy.

I think that at this point, we can include "The Ghost Network" (1.03) and "Unearthed" (1.21) as yet two more episodes that probably didn't occur in this timeline since no one mentioned the similarities in "Forced Perspective" (4.10), and still, no one does, but then again, Olivia's memories have returned, so one would think that she would say something. As for Peter, like I said after "Wallflower" (4.07) first aired, his not voicing that the white hair reminded him of the "Dream Logic" (2.05) case could just be that he didn't want to say something that wouldn't mean anything to anyone else, and that could be the case here, but you would definitely think that Olivia would say something, to Peter if no one else. Walter is continuing to leave the lab, which is nice to see; now, more than ever thus far this season, Fringe is feeling like its old self again, and that is such a great feeling. It's so funny that we see him as the "disapproving father" figure in this episode, and it's difficult to tell whose "father" he is; is he Olivia's (we have seen from episodes such as "Subject 9" that he sort of has a father/daughter relationship with Olivia) or Peter's? Is he both?

Of what, though, does Walter disapprove, and why? Well, he doesn't approve of the possibility of Peter and Olivia hooking up, and that is primarily because he doesn't want Peter making the same mistake that he did - that is, trying to hold on to someone who isn't his to hold on to; I think, however, as I said, that there is something else possibly at work, too. He knows Olivia very well, and as I said, probably even thinks of her as a surrogate daughter; on the other hand, though, he barely knows Peter, so he may be afraid of Peter breaking Olivia's heart and/or hurting her somehow. Peter doesn't seem to want any part of this, though; it's obvious that he learned from what happened during the third season. He doesn't want to open his heart to Olivia because he doesn't think that she's his Olivia, and if she isn't, he's afraid that he'll break his Olivia's heart again when he finally gets back to her. "Oops, I did it again to your heart; got lost in a different Olivia." Throughout the episode, he looks pin-pointedtly disturbed, while Olivia, on the other hand, looks so at ease, quick with a smile (interesting how their roles reversed), and I knew, I just knew, that because of that, something bad was going to happen to her by the end of the episode, and I was right, unfortunately.

This episode is yet another episode of which I love the ending, and I certainly did not see it coming. Like I said, I figured that something bad was going to happen to Olivia, but I didn't know what, and I certainly didn't expect to meet Redverse Nina, and that seems to be the case. It would appear that Blueverse Nina and Redverse Nina switched, but since we've seen "The End of All Things" (4.14) at this point, we know that's not really the case and that the Nina that is seen being held captive with Olivia at the end of this episode is really Redverse Nina and that Blueverse Nina, while insisting that she doesn't know anything about Olivia being injected with Cortexiphan, is probably telling the truth (Walter and Lincoln say so much via their mere facial expressions during the scene in which they confront Blueverse Nina about the Cortexiphan injections, since they know that she is involved), but I'll get more deeply involved in that discussion during my "The End of All Things" review. I'm wondering how Peter got that scar, since he previously hadn't seemed to remember anything that happened to him during the time that he was missing, so I wonder if I'm missing anything.

I also observed that we once again see Astrid highly skilled at comforting people, as she comforts Sean (whom I think is really good-looking). I love how the episode picks up where the last leaves off, I love the LSD quote near the beginning, I love the song that Walter listens to in the lab ("The Ghost Who Walks" by Karen Elson), I love the storage shed scene (reminiscent of the pilot episode), and the second to the last scene, the car scene, in which Peter concedes and says, "When I look into your eyes, I know it's you," and Olivia soon says, "I just have to go pee" before being abducted, and I'm actually going to briefly talk about that before coming to closure, since "The End of All Things" does not answer this question. Was Olivia being tracked? How did her abductor know that she was going to be at that specific gas station, and where and when was she abducted? Surely, Peter saw Olivia enter the store, which, mind you, is very small, yet the guy working claims to have not seen Olivia when Peter asks. Perhaps, a family member of his was being held hostage, or he was paid handsomely to assist in the abduction and then keep quiet about it; either way, I don't see how he wouldn't be suspected, and it's surprising that Peter doesn't, at the very least, say so. At any rate, as I've demonstrated, I really like this episode and give it 8.5 mind-boggling/blowing cliffhangers; stay on the fringe.

Previous Timeline vs. Current Timeline

Before the current season (season 4, obviously) of Fringe even started, the producers promised that within this new timeline, everything that we had previously seen from the first three seasons did indeed happen; they just happened without Peter. In fact, I tweeted Joel about my concern that the first three seasons had ceased to exist, and his response, verbatim, was, "They happened. Trust." Obviously, since we just saw "Welcome to Westfield" (4.12), it looks like the story is finally beginning to clean up its mess, but still, within this timeline, the producers have been repeatedly proven wrong as episode after episode confirms that either an episode or a handful of episodes didn't happen for various reasons, either because the team had never encountered the Observers before, had never encountered Cortexiphan subjects, had never encountered David Robert Jones, because of episodes that were almost entirely centered on Peter, and so forth, so I have taken the liberty of crossing off all episodes that we now know never happened, or were so drastically different that they are ultimately not worth counting. This is 54% (more than half) of the first three seasons of the series, and as you can see, almost the entire second half of the third season didn't happen (we, in fact, have no idea how the Machine was able to work in this timeline; it's almost like an anomaly), so it looks like my concerns were legitimate, and hopefully, now, it will be easier to see why I want the original timeline back.

Season 1

"Pilot"

"The Same Old Story"

"The Ghost Network"

"The Arrival"

"Power Hungry"

"The Cure"

"In Which We Meet Mr. Jones"

"The Equation"

"The Dreamscape"

"Safe"

"Bound"

"The No-Brainer"

"The Transformation"

"Ability"

"Inner Child"

"Unleashed"

"Bad Dreams"

"Midnight"

"The Road Not Taken"

"There's More than One of Everything"

"Unearthed"


Season 2

"A New Day in the Old Town"

"Night of Desirable Objects"

"Fracture"

"Momentum Deferred"

"Dream Logic"

"Earthling"

"Of Human Action"

"August"

"Snakehead"

"Grey Matters"

"Johari Window"

"What Lies Below"

"The Bishop Revival"

"Jacksonville"

"Peter"

"Olivia. In the Lab. With the Revolver."

"White Tulip"

"The Man from the Other Side"

"Brown Betty"

"Northwest Passage"

"Over There" (parts 1 & 2)


Season 3

"Olivia"

"The Box"

"The Plateau"

"Do Shapeshifters Dream of Electric Sheep?"

"Amber 31422"

"6995 kHz"

"The Abducted"

"Entrada"

"Marionette"

"The Firefly"

"Reciprocity"

"Concentrate and Ask Again"

"Immortality"

"6B"

"Subject 13"

"Os"

"Stowaway"

"Bloodline"

"Lysergic Acid Diethylamide"

"6:02 AM EST"

"The Last Sam Weiss"

"The Day We Died"

"Welcome to Westfield" (4.12)

I actually really love this episode and can't help but give it 9.5 FINALLYs, which, of course, refers to the closing scene of the episode, about which I was and am really thrilled. The episode reminds me of the X-Files and The Walking Dead, which is awesome because they are both really great shows. The writers had previously said that the episode was inspired by the Twilight Zone (which is definitely the case because there is an episode of the Twilight Zone called "Welcome to Winfield"), but I have yet to see any episodes of that. The opening scene is a bit annoying, though, because I am so tired of episodes beginning with dreams; don't get me wrong because I think that that dream was a memory of what happened after the conclusion of "6B" (3.14), but still, it was a dream sequence. I don't think that this is the first time that she has had a dream about Peter, either, which means that she was indeed lying when she previously told Peter that she wasn't having dreams about him, and I had suspected so because she said that she wasn't having dreams about him without actually saying that she wasn't having dreams about him. She said that he was a stranger to her, so why would she be having dreams about him?

In this episode, we see Walter becoming more like himself, and even Olivia says that he has been more open lately, and I would totally agree with that. I think that that has to do with the ending of the episode, although I know that there are others that would not agree with me, but I'll talk more about that when I discuss the ending. This episode brings our team to a town called Westfield in which people are going crazy, completely losing their sanities, seemingly moving back and forth between one set of memories and another, and for whatever reason (it's never really clarified), they can't leave Westfield (which totally reminds me of Once Upon a Time). "Johari Window" (2.11) immediately came to mind, which is funny because that episode is even mentioned in this episode, and we learn that that is yet another episode that did not happen within this timeline. I'm wondering if Teresa reminded anyone else of Bootstrap Bill from the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, as she repeats something that she already said without realizing it. It was also kind of cool to see Walter being attacked, since that isn't something that we see too often ("Do Shapeshifters Dream of Electric Sleep?" comes to mind), and he reacts so quickly, which is also cool to see.

About halfway through the episode (possibly even sooner), I had a theory that ended up being right; I suspected that the two universes were coming together within that specific town. I then immediately suspected that Jones was behind the situation, which also ended up being the case, but we don't know why yet, have no idea what he was trying to accomplish. However, I now have an idea regarding why the writers chose to pair Jones and Colonel Broyles together, which also ties into the ending of the episode, so I'm obviously going to have to talk about that at this point. Okay, so, the ending of the episode shows us that Olivia is finally (hence my Bunsen Burner rating) coming around, is finally reverting back to her old self, finally displaying memories of her former life, and I am so happy that that is finally happening. I think that the timeline is reverting back to its original state, although I'm not really sure why; it could be because Peter is a variable that this continuum doesn't understand, so the only way it knows how to deal with him is by writing him back into itself. If you think about it, Jones and Colonel Broyles are the only two currently alive characters that should not be alive, the only two alive characters that had previously died within the previous timeline, so I think that they will "die" by vanishing like Peter did at the end of the third season, when the timeline fully reverts back to its former state, which is why the writers chose to pair them together.

Like I previously stated, I think that Walter becoming more like himself has to do with the ending, and that is because I suspect that, like I also said, the timeline is reverting back to its original state, which is how Jones and Colonel Broyles will eventually cease to exist, and if I'm right, that would explain characters beginning to become more like themselves. Near the end of the episode, in fact, it's apparent that he is really beginning to like having Peter around, as when he's reminded of the Machine, he seems very sad to have been reminded. People have accredited his change in character (such as leaving the lab and working in the field) to Redverse Astrid having said to him that he should think of Peter as his son so that he can be happy, and I would say that that may be a factor, but I don't think that it's the factor. Additionally, some people have said that it's only Olivia that is experiencing the reversion due to the Cortexiphan injections, and again, I disagree; I think that she is the only one who is experiencing it fully, but I don't think that she is the only one who is experiencing it at all. This episode, due to the two universes coming together, really reminds me of "Jacksonville" (2.14) and "The Man from the Other Side" (2.18), both excellent episodes, and one of the people on the bus whose two egos converge looks, at first, deformed like the people of Edina. I love how Peter says of Olivia that "she gave me a place to call home" because that's so consistent; he stayed in the Blueverse even after he discovered the truth because of her. Stay on the fringe for now.

"Making Angels" (4.11)


"Making Angels" is definitely a fantastic episode, primarily because we finally have an Astrid-centric episode, four seasons into the series, something that we have been eagerly awaiting, and what's perfect is that it's not only Astrid-centric, it's double Astrid-centric, since both versions of Astrid are at the center of the stage, and we learn a lot about both of them. There are some really funny and adorable scenes, too; for example, I really love the scene during which Blueverse Astrid screams when she sees Redverse Astrid, and Olivia says, "I always wondered why nobody does that." Then, shortly after, Blueverse Astrid tells Redverse Astrid that she is happy to have met her personally in the flesh, and Redverse Astrid replies by saying, "All personal meetings are in the flesh." Then, there is the scene during which Walter calls Redverse Astrid by her actual name, and Blueverse Astrid says, "Really? You get her name right." I adore the scene during which Blueverse Astrid asks Redverse Astrid if she wants some coffee, and Redverse Astrid lights up, saying, "Yes, I would like that; thank you, Astrid." Needless to say, there are many memorably funny scenes in this episode, and that's part of the reason why it's a memorable episode.

Walter repeatedly gets Blueverse Astrid's name wrong while getting Redverse Astrid's name right, so I think that that goes to prove that when he does get Blueverse Astrid's name wrong, he is pulling her leg. It may have started as a mistake (since he gets other people's names wrong, too), but at this point, he is pulling her leg. He says (thinking that it's Blueverse Astrid that just entered the lab when, in reality, it's Redverse Astrid), "How about you and I share some delightful scrambled eggs, Astro?" Redverse Astrid corrects him, and before he turns around, he says that she has never corrected him before, and I could be wrong, but I could have sworn that she had in this timeline. We also learn something about Blueverse Lincoln, which is that he likes to play chess and plays chess with Walter; Walter says that he likes Lincoln better than Peter because he plays chess with him and that Peter probably wouldn't be much of a challenge, and Peter says, "I've got a challenge for you - why don't we fix the machine?" Something that confuses me about Peter needing help from a Walter is that wasn't it once stated that Peter's IQ is higher than Walter's IQ? I could have sworn that it did, and if that is the case, why does he need their help? Why can't he just reconfigure the machine by himself?

I find something that Redverse Astrid says to Walter to be quite interesting. She is trying to understand his antagonistic feelings toward Peter (which are strange because they seemed to be drastically improving between "Enemy of My Enemy" and "Forced Perspective"), and she says, "Wouldn't it be preferable if you chose to believe he was your son, and then, you could love him and be happy?" This is interesting because ironically (ironic because Walter obviously isn't aware of it), this is exactly what Walter did before after taking Peter from the Redverse; he ultimately lived a relatively guilt-free life because he chose to believe that that Peter was his son, and it's also ironic because the consequential look on Walter's face seems to say, "Yes, I suppose that that is doable." The episode is also incredibly heartbreaking. For example, there is the scene during which Redverse Astrid is talking with Blueverse Astrid, and she says, "I cannot get the thought out of my mind that I couldn't give him [her father] what he wanted because of the way that I am. Do you think if I were more like you, he would have loved me more, if I was normal?" This scene breaks my heart for a few reasons; firstly, this is exactly why I hate the word normal, and secondly, I can relate to how she feels because on some levels, I know what it's like to be made to feel inferior because of ways that you are different.

Blueverse Astrid, near the end of the episode, lies to Blueverse Astrid, trying to spare her feelings and ultimately comfort her. She tells her that she and her own father have never had much of a relationship due to him being a very complicated man that doesn't tend to show his feelings, and we find out at the very end of the episode that much the opposite is true, as we see her either going home to her father or visiting him (it's unclear whether or not she lives with him), but at an earlier point during the series, Astrid tells Walter where she lives but doesn't mention that she lives with her father, so if she does live with him, either she recently moved in with him, or that's another difference in this timeline. It's nice to finally see a bit of Astrid's personal life, but I do have to say that I'm sourly disappointed that she is not the lovechild of Broyles and Nina; I mean, I know that she had already mentioned her father in "The Day We Died" (3.22), but this is definitely total confirmation, and I'm disappointed, especially since it looks like the scene from "A New Day in the Old Town" (2.01) in which Nina kisses Broyles is just a throwaway scene; I suppose that it's still plausible that Nina is Astrid's mother, but since she mentions in this episode that her mother died of cancer, that is very unlikely.

As a trekkie, I really appreciate the scene during which Walter says to Astrid (via the camera), "Also, I'd like some vanilla ice cream. Kirk out!" Back in "Ability" (1.14), Olivia, referring to Jones, says, "The man was clever enough to Star Trek himself out of a maximum security prison," and there have been other references to the franchise, as well, which I'm always happy to hear, as some of the writers are obviously trekkies. I absolutely love Redverse Olivia in this episode, and I know that some people said that she is annoying and out of character in this episode, but I don't agree; she has always been quick with a smile and childish, and she doesn't take some situations seriously. I love how when Walter finds out that she's coming, he says, "The viper?" My boyfriend literally laughed out loud after he said that. Redverse Olivia walks into the lab and says, "Isn't this a party?" and again, I think that that is so typical of her. She asks Peter, "Cold chinese in the fridge?" which is yet another ironic scene because she doesn't realize that he'd certainly be the person to ask since the two of them were so illegitimately close, but he certainly does. She also says to Walter, "Admit it; you like me, Walter," and later, when she asks for a Red Vine and is refused, she says, childishly, "Oh, that's right; you're still mad at me." I absolutely love Anna Torv; she is so fantastic.

We learn a little bit about the Observers in this episode; for starters, they apparently don't have Godlike abilities, since they're simply using a complicated (how's that for an oxymoron?) equation. We also meet March, which is interesting because I (as had many others) had assumed that the Observers' names were in reference to how old they looked, since December looks the oldest, and so forth, but March, to me, looks older than September, so I don't know. Finally, we see the Observers' reaction to Peter existing in this timeline, as March rats out September, and December doesn't look happy. I'm surprised, though, that December already know, and it tells me that December is most likely not who we see them report to via their futuristic communication devices. I wonder, though, what the situation is when March and December retrieve September's device; is Neil's mother asleep, dead, or is time frozen? Would they have killed her, and if so, why? What possible reason would they have had to kill her? Just to retrieve the device seems pretty rash, and you would think that they would wish to avoid interfering any more than they already have. Maybe she's just asleep, or that scientific equation also allows them to freeze time.

Speaking of September's device, though, what purpose did that serve for September? Did he, like Neil, use it to kill people, and if so, why? When Neil kills the first victim, the one with cancer, does no one on the bus see what he is doing? That scene really bothers me for that reason; it seems like the only purpose that the bus serves is to block the way so that seeing the victim lying on the bench, bleeding out of his eyes, will be a mystery, but practically, it doesn't make much sense. Also, I know that, to some people, I complained about "Subject 9" (4.04) because in that episode, we learn that Walter has always been deathly afraid of germs, even though we have seen him taking part in some wildly unsanitary activities, and I attempted to dismiss it by saying that maybe he's just afraid of germs in the new timeline, but in this episode, we see him engaging in his usual behavior, as he eats something with a gloved hand that has been contaminated. It could be that the timeline (as we begin to see in later episodes) is beginning to revert back to where it was, but I don't know; I think that that is a potential continuity error/plot-hole. In this episode, Olivia says, "Everybody has someone that wants to kill them," and this elicits an expressive response from Peter. Is it possible that, even in this timeline, Olivia is somehow subconsciously aware of Mr. X? I definitely appreciate the easter eggs, too, such as TSA badge 0047 (figures) and room number 215 ("Peter"), and I give this episode 8.5 tears of blood.

"Imagine If… Peter Was a Superhero" (BEYOND THE FRINGE chapter #4A)


"Imagine If… Peter Was a Superhero" is not a comic that I had been expecting to like. When I first heard about it, my initial reaction was, "Really?" I thought that it sounded so silly and so dumb, but now that I've read it, I love it, and it's honestly one of my favorite Fringe comics to date, if not my favorite. In this universe, Walter raised Peter, and I'm guessing that since Peter words it that way, he is from the other universe in this universe, as well, but that's just a guess. Peter is a superhero known as the Pattern, which is kind of a stupid name, but that's just my opinion. He apparently is capable of detecting where soft spots are located and uses them as bases for where he is needed, which is kind of cool. That tells me that indeed, someone crossed over to the Other Side at one point, probably Walter. I really love how the comic is set up; it's very much your stereotypical superhero comic book, but that's why it's so awesome. It works because it's with beloved Fringe characters, and it's funny. Peter is a playboy billionaire who was raised by Walter, and in this way, Peter is Bruce Wayne while Walter is Alfred, and it's absolutely splendid. I just love how I was so pleasantly surprised by this comic and that I actually really love it. Like I said, I wasn't expecting to love it as much as I do, and I hope that other cortexifans that have read it really love it, too.


I wonder if Newton is supposed to be Thomas Jerome Newton. It doesn't say, but it can't be a coincidence that that's his name, can it? I also love how Broyles is Commissioner Broyles, just like Commissioner Gordon from Batman. I couldn't be completely sure, but I think that there might be a strong possibility that Mr. ZFT is supposed to be Jones, and obviously, in parallel to Batman, he is supposed to be the Joker, and I say that because Broyles says that he escaped from St. Claire's Asylum (asylum sounds so much more sinister than institution), which I think is supposed to parallel Arkham Asylum from which the Joker escapes. Peter, in this universe, apparently takes doses of Cortexiphan, so that makes me wonder if that would even be possible on the TV series. In fact, it has been explicitly stated that Cortexiphan is intended for children and rarely works when administered to adults. Many of them die as a result, in fact, so has Peter been taking it since he was a child? I also wonder about Olivia (and I think it's hilarious that she was an aide at St. Claire's; I totally can't see that), since she has Cortexiphan abilities in this universe, too. She even makes Peter's utility belt levitate. She says that her body naturally produces it, but is that even possible? I'd almost think that Walter would have had to have given it to her as a child, and it's possible that she was continually receiving it as an adult, unbeknownst to her. I love how Walter still loves Red Vines, too, and Olivia is now apparently like Batgirl or Batwoman now. I wonder what her superhero name is. I love this comic and award it 10 utility belts.