Welcome to the rewatch for episode 19 of Fringe season 1 – “The Road Not Taken”. Join us as we stand at the gates to the other side with our high beams on in search of new perspectives and higher levels of perception.
We have renamed this episode: Frenemy At The Gates.
Synopsis: Olivia experiences “awake dreams,” seeing elaborate visions of things not really there. While investigating a disturbing case of a woman who apparently spontaneously combusted, Olivia throws caution to the wind and explores her unexplained visions further. Meanwhile, Walter discusses key information about the Z.F.T. manifesto, and Peter reveals a secret that yields unexpected results in the case.
Below the jump I share my new observations and perspectives, and take a quick look at the unresolved and closed mysteries from “The Road Not Taken”.
Congratulations to Olivia Dunham (and Anna Torv) for winning Fringie of The Week for 1.19 “The Road Not Taken”. In what was a truly epic battle between Dunham and the Bishop Boy’s, the intrepid agent won-out with 25% of the total vote – edging out Walter by only 1%!
I make that 3 wins on the spin for Dunham, this vital victory places her in first place for the first time in 19 episodes. With only one episode to vote for this season it’s now Dunham’s to lose.
Standings going into the last episode:
Olivia Dunham (7 wins)
Peter Bishop / Walter Bishop (6 wins each)
The Observer/Meegar’s Mom/ The Child (1 win each)
Keep an eye out for the final Fringe of The Week of the season in the next day or so!
Each week FringeBloggers invite some of the most interesting personalities from the Fringe community into FB Towers, to review aspects from the most recent episode in our Fringe Roundtable! Joining the panel this week to review The Road Not Taken is self-professed Fringe cynic Ace, Fringe parody-maker TheMarkedMouse (AKA David Wu) and the ever-awesome yvaine!
The Observer. Where do you think he’s taken Walter!?
Ace: To the supermarket, where else?
TheMarkedMouse: I believe this is the beginning of a culmination of events hinted at in Epis. 1.04 “The Arrival,” where we learn that Walter owes the Observer a favor for bring him and Peter back to life. I suspect the Observer is taking Walter to a safehaven of sorts, where they will be setting up for an upcoming battle/war.
yvaine: Maybe in one of the parallel worlds? This particular part of the episode is really jogging my brain, but I couldn’t really think of any other explanation worthy of that cliff-hanger.
Here’s my review for episode 1.19 “The Road Not Taken”, looking at the good and the bad:
Astrid out of the Lab. The character is still under-developed but this is progress and that’s all we can ask for. It was great to see her join the gang for a change of scenery. If I recall correctly this is only the third time we have seen her out of that dusty laboratory (the other two occasions being the FBI offices after Walter stabbed her in the neck, and during the pigeon GPS thing from “Power Hungry”). This latest venture was a positive step in the right direction.
Dense with mythology. That’s the way I like it. I’d rather have to engage my brain during an episode of Fringe than have characters that I don’t care about. Mythology is often the glue between episodes, and indeed, seasons. Dissolve that glue with too many episodic episodes and it creates a disconnect. A bit more of a serialized effort wouldn’t exactly hurt, in my opinion. More of the same, please!
Above are some screencaps from the ZFT manifesto pages that were seen at the beginning of “Road Not Taken” (view in full post to toggle screenshots). With the help of Alexei in the comments, I have transcribed the page below (note, you can see the ZFT transcription from “Ability” here):