Fringe Review: 3.12 Concentrate And Ask Again


Welcome to our review for episode 12 of Fringe season 3 – “Concentrate and Ask Again”.

In this review we provide honest opinions on the good and the bad aspects of the episode. We identify the answers that were provided and the mysteries that remain locked away. We take an in-depth look at other aspects of the episode that made an impression on us, before rounding off the review with our final thoughts and episode rating.

THE GOOD

  • Continuation of Mythology and Main Arc. While it didn’t take center stage, it was tremendous to the see the First People book-hunt spill over from the previous episode, and the Cortexiphan element was an unexpected, yet welcome piece of the pie. This was a standalone episode that was rescued by the mythos.
  • Clever callbacks to seasons and episodes past.
  • The Dynamic Between Olivia and Simon was enjoyable and informative.
  • Interesting Direction that enhanced the framing of scenes and the overall storytelling.
  • Nina in back-to-back episodes? Somebody pinch me!
  • The Music Composition was pretty good.

THE BAD

  • Out-Of-Character. While I appreciate that they’re telling a specific romantic story that has gleaned several rewards, for it to work it’s required Olivia to act out-of-character. This is not the Olivia we grew up with. She’s become far too needy, and has developed a transparency that is in danger of undoing her as a serious character. The attempt to make Peter the focus is having a detrimental impact on the story’s actual flawed hero. There has to be another way.
  • Machine What? After the previous episode saw Peter undergo major changes as a result of his relationship with the Boom-Boom-Machine, we barely see any of it in this episode. There may be an undercurrent of BBM activity going on, but that’s not nearly enough considering where “Reciprocity” left off.
  • The Plot of The Week was adequate, but it didn’t really compel me in and of itself. The side characters themselves where non-entities, and when you think back to how well developed the likes of Milo were, it’s clear that they have done better in this regard.
  • The Cortexiphan Connection came a bit from left-field. I appreciate the mythology, but Simon didn’t strike me as the logical or necessary leap for Walter to take, particularly without exploration more obvious alternatives. It just felt somewhat out of whack.
  • Taking The Pee-tah. We wait all this time for Sam Weiss, and he delivers the news that this whole thing hinges on who arouses Peter the most? That’s the lying, robotic, murderous, plot device that is Peter? This has to one of the most disappointing plot and character developments in Fringe history. It’s not helped by the way Sam conveyed the idea, but the idea itself is not compelling to me for many, many reasons.

BIG MYSTERIES

  • Why did Simon’s powers develop as they did? Was he predisposed differently from the other Cortexiphan children?
  • How many others like Simon are there?
  • Now that Olivia knows that Peter still has feelings for Altlivia, what will she do – how will this change their relationship?
  • Can Sam Weiss be trusted? What outcome is he trying to influence? What is he not telling Nina?
  • Who will Petah choose – Olivia, Altlivia, or his pillow?

BIG ANSWERS

  • Nina found another First People’s book in William Bell’s mythology porn stash. This one is German.
  • Project Jellyfish – the weapons project killed the unborn children of several former marines. They used the blue powder of death to strike revenge against those involved in the original project.
  • Simon is a Cortexiphan subject who developed unintended abilities (mind reading). Walter kicked him out of the trials because he was worried he would read his mind and discover that he stole Peter from the alternate universe.

FRINGE THOUGHTS

  • A mysterious opening. Nina! Ancient Artifacts! Memories of Bellie! (*shudder*) Mythology Porn Stash! Photoshop nightmares!
  • We got quite a bit from Nina’s expressions as she waltzed down memory lane. There was a sincerity about her that we only usually see in teeny glimpses. Her relationship with Bellie is now more firmly established – they knocked boots, but he couldn’t commit.
  • I liked the way Nina gently ran her hand across Bell’s books – memories, physical manifestations of the things they shared, and the things he kept from her:

Nina: “The First People..you and your secrets”

  • Question is, what does Nina do with this information?
  • I was a bit surprised that she brought Olivia in on the discovery so quickly, but it made sense both for the story and the little character details that were to follow.

Olivia: “So, they all say essentially the same thing?”

Nina: “Not essentially, precisely – despite being attributed to different authors. A fantastical idea, and I have yet to uncover why William was pursuing it. That being said it was information in the books that led us directly to the coordinates, where we recovered the pieces of the device”

Olivia: “Heey! Exposition is Broyles’ job! Which makes them impossible to discount”

  • Nina quickly tires of mythology, she’s in the mood for some girl-talk and she asks Olivia about Altlivia’s journal – “perhaps her writing might shed some light?”
  • The great wall of Olivia rises, but she answers the real question that Nina was asking:

“I’ve already read the file and she didn’t mention the First People or the Boom-Boom-Machine”

  • I doubt Altlivia knows about the First People in much depth. Speaking of which, how much does Walternate know about them? I would think that he knows at least as much as the team Over Here does, given his understanding (limited or otherwise) of the BBM. Anyway..
  • Nina gets all maternal. She has always treated Olivia as a kind of mystical daughter – indeed, one of her first pieces of advice to an adult Olivia embraced that very notion. What does this tell us about Nina? What does it tell us about Olivia and the traits she projects?

Nina: “I..imagine that must have been awkward? Reading her account of her time with Petah?”

  • Very interesting. I detect that Nina has experience of this type of thing – perhaps with Bellie, who loved her but didn’t love her all the way. Nina learned how to handle being second best in Bellie’s eyes. So, will she pass this outlook down to Olivia, or will she propose something different?
  • I didn’t expect Olivia to open up like she did. Again, I put this down to contrivance (not enough shading to bring these two characters up to this point).
  • Nor do I feel that Olivia would be so ‘needy’. I accept that experiences bring out different sides to people, but it doesn’t quite mesh. Nevertheless, it’s clear that Olivia has been reaching out for a female perspective – having spent the past couple of weeks getting utterly USELESS advice from Astrid, she turns to Nina almost without realizing it. If you told me this would happen in season 2, I would have said “HAHAHA! LOLz”. Because, really, Olivia wouldn’t let her guard down so easily.

Olivia: “It seems that somewhere along the way she did start to develop genuine feelings for him”

Nina: “I see. And, did that surprise you?”

Olivia: “No.”

  • Didn’t surprise me either, Liv. I know that some people didn’t believe (or didn’t want to) that was were the story was heading, but I felt that it was the natural storytelling direction from the moment Peter and Altlivia swapped saliva, if not before. Having Altlivia genuinely fall for Peter was the writers upping the stakes, making things more interesting, while fusing it with the main arc. Nothing wrong with that, but it’s a very fine line, as we’d eventually find out.

Olivia: “I mean, I understand how that can happen”

  • Olivia hesitates, unsure whether she can go all the way and reveal her insides to Nina. Orange Hair invites her to continue with a non-judgemental expression of sincerity. Remember, this is a powerful bisniz woman we’re talking about. Nina is fierce and Olivia has previously had a complex about Nina’s perception of her (think season 1).
  • So to go there, to open up like this, and for Nina to beckon her to do so is BIG. It’s bigger than Peter’s machine. Note Olivia’s lack of eye-contact, note her dipped head and feigned smile. This is not comfortable terrain, to say the least.
  • Again, it’s contrived, but it’s interesting enough. As was Olivia’s visible ‘gulp’ as she pleads for Nina’s point of view:

Olivia: “It makes me wonder if he feels the same way..”

  • Probably a bit too on the nose there – I wonder whether Anna Torv truly buys into the way that Olivia is behaving? (I’d say that she doesn’t), but you can’t help but feel for Olivia. She’s vulnerable.
  • Yet she’s often been that way. I guess her current behaviour is so OTT so that everyone can see where she is at the moment – let’s not forget this is the same character who some people had trouble warming to back in the first season. The writers want to break the character down, but are perhaps over-steering the wheel in this instance.

Olivia: “And I would understand if he did. I was her for a while and she’s..she’s like me but bettah”

  • CRUMBS, OLIVIA. :( First, I don’t believe that Olivia would understand. Second, it’s heart-breaking to hear her say that Altlivia is better than her. No-one should think that of themselves. But you know, I’m not sure that Olivia truly believes that Altlivia is better than her – she’s basically asking Nina to tell her that she’s wrong, to give her some sort of validation.
  • Furthermore, it’s the way that she says it, and the context, that is telling. Notice how Olivia literally spits those words out. She doesn’t like the taste of them, they taste like bacteria – they’re foreign to her. And the context isn’t that “she’s a better person than me”, it’s more like “she’s luckier, more fortunate than me”. BIG DIFFERENCE when context is applied. And I think this is what the writers are getting at with the idea of “better”. In this sense, there’s no doubt that Altlivia is a better version of Olivia.

  • Just like sometimes we are all the better versions of ourselves – when we succeed, when we excel, when we’re in the right place at the right time. Sometimes it’s luck or timing, sometimes it’s skill or hard work. But it’s all about context. When we’re not at our best, when we’re not winning every round, we can often be stronger, more resilient, more admirable, more redeeming. These are some of the qualities that Olivia has. So being better isn’t always a fact..it’s a circumstance. We all have our better days and our not so bettah daze.
  • What is particularly interesting with the Fringe approach is that they’re exploring the individual through a parallel universe scenario. So we get to see a take on what it means to go up against ourselves, to both understand and repel the different corners of our being and the impact they have on our own outlook and on others. This is one of the reasons why I don’t dislike Altlivia as much as some seem to – she’s simply Olivia under slightly different circumstances. I find her compelling, I just wish the writers would realize her more as a character rather than a plot device.
  • And while many people disagreed with me, this is why I felt Peter was undermining who Olivia was when he fell for Altlivia. He was enjoying a circumstance rather than holding on to the reality of his Olivia. Nothing wrong with that, you might say. After all, Altlivia is (in theory) a fully realized person. Except, when the story tells you that two people love each other, there’s a point to be made when one of those people ignores/fails to notice inherent differences in the other. You might call Petah a ‘fair weather’ BF.

  • Nina’s reaction to Olivia’s heart-wrenching, yet slightly forced self-pity, is interesting. Orange Hair is almost embarrassed, but not quite. She seems to intuit that Olivia is processing through self-depreciation.

Olivia: “I mean, she still has her mother and she wasn’t experimented on as a child, and she can laugh, has real friends. She even wears a dress once in a while”

  • I pretty much touched on this above, but it was interesting to see yet more evidence of Olivia changing her own reality merely by projecting her inner desires – to wear a dress once in a while. Now, I wonder when THAT will happen for our Liv?
  • It’s not just the dress though, it’s what Nina says next:

“But even so, you don’t know what Peter is thinking”

  • Now, if Olivia could just magic up a situation where she could know what Boy Wonder was thinking. I feel that this is one of the secrets to the Fringe storytelling. It’s constant layering through story and character. It’s wish fulfillment –  it’s the ID monster, it’s an example of how the internal can affect the external. It’s reciprocity, if you will.
  • We find out Nina’s advice to Olivia: “if you want to know how Peter feels, ask him”. Good on you, Nina. She doesn’t want Olivia to make her mistakes, but she expresses this in a way that enables Olivia to make the choice.
  • Good to see the Magic 8 Ball roll back around. 8 also being Olivia’s special number.

  • Holy creepy dolls and bone dissolve powder, Batman!
  • Walter talks some nonsense. I’m just going to ignore him from now on.

Peter: “Really?”

Me: “Haven’t you got your own drama to deal with, Peter?”

  • Peter finds the source, calls it “an odd delivery system”. One might say the same about you, Pete. Show us your back, do you have a pully thing too?

  • The Fringe Team find a trail which leads them to a suspect. Peter tries to poison Olivia with otherworldly coffee. Olivia swallows the mysterious potion so as not to offend Boy Wonder. Peter finds photos of a girl. Olivia’s Olivia-dar immediately kicks into gear.

Olivia: “she was obviously important to him..”

  • Seriously Liv, is this “Marionette” all over again, or something? I’m beginning to wonder whether someone has switched OUR Olivia! Hey, it’s better to be on the front foot..just in case.

Olivia: “Do you still think about her?”

  • Olivia, I recognize the distant light in your eyes, the spirit in your heart, and haunted-ness of your features. But I do not understands the words coming out of your mouth.
  • To be fair, these are questions I want the writers to address. It just makes sense. Whether it makes sense for Olivia to be raking this up while on a case or in such ‘needy’ fashion, is another matter!

Peter: “Exsqueeze me? Let me pretend I didn’t hear you so I can buy some time to think up something to say”

Olivia: “You heard me. You’ve bought me a hundred cups of coffee, and you know that I take it black with one sugar, but this morning you brought me one with milk, and I’m assuming that’s the way the OTHER Olivia likes HERS. She’s taken EVERYTHING, even the way you order me coffee!”

  • The cogs in Peter’s mind go round and round. You’ve got to almost feel a touch sorry for him, being cornered like that at work. The guy dare not move for Olivia to strike him down with angst and tissues.

  • Olivia gives Peter this look that I’ve never seen her give before (actually, I might recall something similar from “Ability”). It’s fascinating because I’m thinking – what is the actress doing here? Does she simply hate the way her character is behaving, or is she giving a really interesting interpretation of how someone would ‘surface-handle’ such a painful question?
  • One thing I had to remember is that Olivia still ‘loves’ Peter (whatever that means). The previous episode gave us some foundation for the way she’s behaving, so in some respect there’s continuity. Where I have a problem is that the continuity has risen like some terrifying shark from the subconscious of the character I used to know.
  • And I’m not saying it’s all bad, it’s just not congruent with the character. And I worry that she seems to be falling more deeply in ‘love’ with Peter since she discovered that he slept her with shadow. Are the writers consciously doing this? One some level it makes sense. Olivia is competing with Altlivia, with herself. She’s had so much taken away from her that the only way to heal that pain is to get it back, to win it back. And the only way to do that is to keep her heart open to Peter, to see him as being blameless, even though in the corners of her heart she knows that her gut reaction was right. “I don’t want to be with you anymore!”
  • At least Peter is ‘honest’ (heh):

“Yes, I think about her all the time”

  • Except he loses me here. He’s very harsh with that opening gambit. Very harsh – and you know why? Because he’s manipulating his way out of a corner. He’s purposefully setting Olivia up so that his next line acts like a cushion made of bliss:

Peter: “I think about, how she used my feelings for you – to manipulate me. How she lied to me, and everybody else.”

  • I thought I smelt BS on Peter a long time ago, and he goes and proves it. Olivia is confuzzled, but she’s not stupid:

Olivia: “..before you knew she wasn’t me..She was fun, right? She had an easier smile, I mean that’s what you said”

*long-ass silence in the library*

Peter: Olivia, I said that because I wanted you to know that I noticed the differences that I should have noticed but ignored. But I thought it was because of me..because of us. I thought that I was bringing out a different side in you because I’m SO awesum. But it was never because I wanted to be with her more. Because I *cough* don’t”

  • GAWD. It’s like a game of emotional table tennis!
  • I’m glad that Olivia threw the one about Altlivia’s ‘easy smile ‘back at him. I said at the time that it would linger with her. Peter is telling  slither of truth about thinking that he was bringing out the sun in Olivia, but that’s not the whole story. He purposefully ignored his spidey-sense. He turned a blind eye, and to some degree, that makes it worse.
  • I can live with his ego, but I struggle with the murky reality of him both failing to  recognize Olivia and kind of not wanting to test his suspicions enough. There’s a ‘darkness’ in that, and it lurks in his heart, for sure.
  • Olivia seems to buy it – she has to, she wants to. But as I said, ultimately, she can’t.
  • Peter apologizes for the milk. Can we talk about that for a second? How on earth did he make such a bone-headed mistake in the first place? Yes, he’s got Altliv on the brain, but it’s still pretty stupid. And to think he bought that ‘Olivia’ suddenly developed a taste for milk in the first place. But, we’ve been over all of that!
  • And I get it, it’s difficult for him. But what I would like to see is for him to be honest with Olivia. For me, it’s obvious that he’s more attuned to Altlivia, so why string Olive along? Is she his fall-back chick? Fallback Dunham and let this one go.
  • Moving on. Broyles says that serialized stories are the most shiny. Isn’t that what he says? Needless to say, I agree with the man!

  • A rooftop chase ensues. Peter is no Olivia, but he’s learning. The runaway (Mr. Downey) gets hit by a car who happened to be walking in the road, and the next part of our plot begins: Find a way to read the man’s mind while he’s in a coma. Hook Peter and the Halo device up to the guy? Nah, Walter has a Cortexikid stashed away somewhere.
  • Walter goes in search of his off-the-books Cortexibrat, runs out of gas, and has Olivia and Peter join him on the quest. Fairly mechanical, and I can’t imagine Walter doing any sort of serious driving without having a breakdown of the mental kind, but the idea of unlisted Cortexiphan subject is an interesting one.

Walter: “He wasn’t in the records. He didn’t complete the program. Simon was beginning to develop the ability to read minds. We hadn’t intended it to happen, none of the other children were affected in such a way”

Peter: “You threw him out of the trial, didn’t you, Walter”

  • Very nice from Peter – a casual ‘why doesn’t this surprise me’ reaction, with a hint of contempt.

Peter: “cause you knew if he read your mind, he’d know your secret. That you’d taken me from the other side”

  • Self preservation from a ten year old. You don’t surprise me either, Walter.

Walter: “Whether or not he completed the trials is inconsequential, he had the ability once”

Olivia: “Well, how do you know he can still access it?”

  • Walter says that it’s probably dormant – which is consistent with the idea that Mr. Winters, Agent Harassment, et al, didn’t get round to ‘waking up’ all of the Cortexitots, not least those scrubbed from the records like Simon. Except, as we see, Simon’s ability is having 24 hour parties in his head, and everyone is invited! Just bring beer, cake..and your thoughts!
  • I enjoyed the way Simon was introduced. We immediately get the sense that all is not well with our latest Cortexling. From the ‘you’re not invited to my head-party!’ gated entrance, to the axe of danger, to Walter taking a toilet break – there was much to unsettle us.

  • Simon can’t help but read Walter’s mind, but he doesn’t know what the heck Reiden Lake is. This helps us to see Simon’s ability in action, while providing wonderful insight into the way that Walter’s mind works – his thoughts cycling through in his head, so very surface level. A compelling detail that I really loved.
  • In other mind-reading news, Simon is unable to penetrate Olivia’s thoughts:

Walter: “She’s another Cortexiphan subject – forged in the rings of Saturn, embellished in the mountain of Etna, dipped in the Sea of Tranquility. Sometimes you kids are immune to each others abilities.

  • Some really nice storytelling elements as Simon passes out from Walter’s nonsense. Hey, we’ve all been there, Si!
  • Walter looks at what he created – a man broken, tortured by a past that permeates his present and dampens his future. Again, I ask how Walter can live with himself? He must be somewhat desensitized to it, as he seems to relate better to the circumstances of broken men, than he does children who he experimented on. Anyway, I’ll leave Walter for another day.

Peter: “How many more, Walter? How many more are gonna come crawling out of the woodwork?”

  • I liked Peter for asking the question, though I’m not best pleased with his tone. Perhaps more directed at his father, but there’s a hint of disdain for Simon and those like him. I realize it’s a commonly held expression, but he likens the guy to an insect. I’d ignore this if it wasn’t for Peter’s later remark, which we’ll come to in due course.
  • Oh, and Walter doesn’t answer the question – just in case a fire-breathing Cortexiphan subject is needed in future episodes.
  • Olivia makes Simon some of his own tea. He thanks her for his own tea, because this is Olivia’s house. Kidding.
  • Olivia notices the creepy drawings of some girl hanging on Simon’s wall, but she gives him a warm marmalade smile. Simon smiles back, he doesn’t have Olivia in his head, which is kinda great, considering his abilities and all. I really enjoyed this scene – it’s a bit on the nose, but there’s a nice vibe between Si and Olivia that befits their connection as Cortexiphan subjects.

Simon: “Do you know how it feels to be burdened with something that makes it impossible for you to relate to another person? That makes you feel completely alone in the world?”

  • Olivia is brilliantly captured, and Torv does some of her best facial work since Altlivia left the situation. “I can imagine”. So strange she should use that word, after our previous review. Coincidence, but perhaps we’re picking up on a thread.

Olivia: “Simon, I know that dealing with our capabilities can sometimes be difficult, but they can also help people.”

  • Notice the word she uses – “capabilities”. Such an interesting yet natural alternative to “abilities”. Again we have slight degrees of context that puts a different glint on how the character sees herself. Or how she’s learning to see herself. Underneath the recent angst, she’s not accepting the idea that she’s a victim. I’ve always admired that about Olivia.
  • I also tipped my hat to the goodness in our Gatekeeper. She delivers an important message about empowering yourself to shape, or realize, your own destiny. This is the Olivia I know – the one who doesn’t do self-pity too often, the one who inspires others, a natural and unnatural leader of men, women and molebabies.
  • Simon allows the moment to fill with wonderful air, and then he responds with a weary smile:

Simon: “I don’t have to read your mind to know you want something”

  • Olivia uses her silver tongue to get Simon to help with the investigation.
  • Another creepy doll murder. Makes me wonder how they knew no-one else would pull the string? Simon tries to read Mr. Downey’s thoughts, Olivia touches his hand and amplifies him like Peter did to her way-back in “Ability” (spec). He pukes up the tea she made him earlier, but he got something: a hernia and some informations!

  • The team use the info and call Nina. Olivia observes that Walter and Bell’s trials ruined Simon’s life. Heartless Peter thinks he knows what Olivia wants to hear and belittles Simon and Olivia in one swoop:

“Olivia, I know what you’re thinking. You and he are nothing alike”

  • Maybe it was better when Olivia didn’t let you get a word in edge-ways, Peter? This talking thing only makes things worse. How can he say that to Olivia? Clearly there is a correlation between Mindscape and Olivia. Especially, in these fragile times where she’s relating every daily experience to her own life (or, her own life is manifesting in her daily experiences..).
  • To put down one Cortexikid, is to put them all down, in a manner of speaking. Peter should really know Olivia better than this. Anyone would think he was a robot, or something!
  • Somewhere deep inside Olivia, Projection Peter is dissolving in a haze of blue powder. And rightly so.
  • That being said, Olivia may be broken, but she’s not quite as hopeless as Simon. Her abilities are more positive, I’d say. It’s often the way Peter says things that causes trouble.
  • Olivia is really transparent while talking to Simon. Without taking anything away from Dunham, in a way it’s all about her. She’s using him to work out the problems in her own life. But that’s always been interesting – we’re seeing these characters solve internal and global problems. Almost every major mythology component is analogous to something else, something human. Think: the Blight, Cortexiphan, shapeshifters, the AU, etc. It’s storytelling.
  • Essentially, Olivia is asking: “Isn’t it better to know?
  • And that’s the question at the heart of this installment. I like it. I find Olivia to be a bit jumbled, but it’s an interesting question. My personal view is that it’s not better to know – not through unnatural means, just like it’s not better to play god and make decisions that we can’t possibly hope to make and make well. To clarify, I think that Olivia needs to know the truth about Peter, but only needs to use her gut to work out the answers. She doesn’t need to read minds for that.
  • But, perhaps one day humanity will have the ability to know things by means once considered unnatural. Heck, we’re already on the cusp.

Simon: “No one should know exactly what someone else is thinking”

Olivia: “Probably not, but I wouldn’t mind having that ability right now”

  • Transparent, Olivia. Though I like exploring Olivia wanting another person’s ability. It’s similar to how she’d like to have Altlivia’s life (in some respects). It’s always greener on the other side, but I’d be particularly interested to know whether Atlivia’s life is really all it’s cracked up to be? How does she really feel in that skin of hers? As much as I’ve bemoaned the lack of true characterization, there’s still an opportunity for the writers to really develop Altlivia in her own right.
  • It doesn’t have to be explored through her life being worse than it seems (we already know that he world is in physical turmoil, which carries it’s own weight), but I think it would be incredibly interesting if Olivia’s (and our perspective on the character) was turned upside down.
  • I mean, what really goes on behind those bright eyes? I get the sense that she was bringing more than Peter’s photo back to the AU with her, so I hope we get some more juice from that.

  • Simon reads Peter’s mind, and Olivia retreats, slightly embarrassed for being so see-through.
  • Nina and Broyles hook-up. There’s no kiss-kiss, but we do get a blast from the past in weird-creepy CIA Guy. Nicely done, I must say. And this heightens speculation that Massive Dynamic had a hand in sending the shadow back out to space. Nina has many men under her thumb:

CIA Guy: “Nina asked me to do some digging, and we both know that what Nina Sharp wants, she gets”

  • Sexual connotations alert! Nina smiles a satisfied smile, “all men shall cower before me, for I am Nina of Iron Fist and Kevlar skin”. Was she trying to make Broyles jealous? ;)
  • The team follow CIA Guy’s tip, which leads Olivia to a swanky function where she gets to…wear a dress! She will, she WILL go to the ball!
  • And to be fair, she wears the dress pretty well. Doesn’t she, Peter?

Peter: [“note to self, tell her she looks grrrreat! and I’ll score a few more points”]

  • I’ll be honest, when I saw this scene in the promo photos I didn’t think it reflected a very promising episode. The scene itself was pretty good, some nice visuals and some Dunhamnating. Olivia has always been a good shot, but clearly Altlivia is ‘rubbing off’ on her. Calm down, Peter.

  • The take-away? Don’t mess with Dunham, or you’ll get it in the neck.
  • Probably one of the best moments for me was the silent scene between Walter and Simon. Walter tries to say something meaningful, but Simon just cuts him off with a look of ‘don’t bother’ (though he seems to accept Walter’s thoughts on some level). Subtle, but informative. There needed to be something more between them before the episode ended, and at least we got something.
  • Olivia’s all about Simon creeping his imaginary girlfriend out. Simon reminds her (in case we weren’t paying attention first time round) that there are somethings you shouldn’t know.

Girl: “You drew creepy pictures of me? I imaginary un-date you!”

  • Olivia also leaves Simon with some wise words: “don’t let you ability stop you from living your life”. Ah, the eternal optimist, she doesn’t truly know what it’s like to be him.

  • Simon leaves Olivia with Peter’s Mind!Thoughts, and she now has confirmation of what some of us have been telling her for the past 11 episodes. I’ll say it again, it’s pretty much impossible to untangle his feelings for the two Dunhams. In an ideal world, he’d alternate between both.
  • Nina didn’t get where she is for no reason. She cracks the Seamus Wiles > Sam Weiss anagram, we get a bit of naked hand action, and she pays her Jedi tutor a visit.

  • Finally we have them on-screen together and gain some perspective on their relationship. It’s not quite as I’d imagined – Nina is plenty in the dark about old Samuel.
  • It’s as though Sam had planted clues over the centuries, waiting for the connections to be made.

Sam: “So you found it”

Nina: “You never told me about this”

Sam: “I’m not your problem, Peter Bishop is”

Nina: “Go on..”

Sam: “What I can tell you is this. That device can either be used as a tool of creation or as a weapon of destruction – it depends on your point of view. And Peter Bishop, is uniquely tuned to operate it. Whatever frequency Peter’s vibrating at, will determine how the machine reacts”

Nina: “What determines Peter’s frequency”

Sam “It depends on his state of mind, which in turn depends on who he ends up with – Olivia from here, or Olivia from over there. Whichever one he chooses it will be her universe that survives”

Nina: So in that case there’s no cause for concern. He’ll choose our Olivia.”

Sam: “I wouldn’t be so sure of that..”

  • Most suspicious Samuel of Weissington, ever. I like the notion that Peter (and all of the characters) are frequencies. It plays into many of the ideas established throughout the series, and it’s something I half-joked about at the end of the “Marionette” review.
  • I found Nina’s confidence in her universe surviving to be short-sighted. I’m not sure where her faith in Peter’s judgement comes from, and hasn’t she heard of ‘balance’, ‘reciprocity’? Why is one world surviving OK with her? And does she have reason to believe that Sam is batting for her side?
  • Moreover, I’m not in love with the outcome of two universes resting on which Olivia stirs Peter’s pants the most. I understand that love can influence a person’s outlook, which is the larger idea here, but it’s dangerously close to over-cooking the Romance Goose.
  • The direction of the story was interesting enough without labelling it in such direct fashion. And as far as I’m concerned, Peter doesn’t deserve either woman. It’s just not something I can see myself staying invested in. Furthermore, I don’t like the idea of Olivia being a pawn for Peter’s whims.

  • The crumb of comfort is that Sam Weiss is apparently not to be trusted – and that was clearly illustrated in this scene. That doesn’t necessarily mean he’s ‘bad’, but he clearly has a vagenda. What?
  • Anyway, go run yourself a hot bath, Olivia. There are plenty of machines in the sea.

FINAL THOUGHT

A diluted mythalone experience that wasn’t as good as recent episodes, but it was better than I expected. I agree with Sam that Peter is a problem. And the relationship funk needs to be curtailed. That being said, I hope the title of this episode is as on-point as the previous installment. I’m prepared to ‘ask again’ at a later point.

Best Performer: Omid Abtahi.

Best Line: “No one should know exactly what someone else is thinking”Simon to Olivia.

Best Moment: The silent interchange between Walter and Simon.

Episode Rating: 7/10

You can find all of our reviews here. Our episode Observations can be found here.

Comments

  1. Mari says

    One thing I was wondering is, if the writers will have AltLivia actually having strong feelings for Peter. Sure, she was feeling someting for him, but even she said it wouldn’t be realistic to think that hse wouldn’t do what she had to do. Who is to say that her feelings for Frank, or even Lincoln for that matter. Maybe it’1s not even a question of choise. I guess we’ll have to wait for the next episode to know how AltLivia is feeling about beeing back to the other universe, back to her life and far away from Wonder Boy!

    Like: Thumb up 0

  2. Betelgeuse says

    Even if the writers of Fringe are die hard romantics, I refuse to believe that the fate of two universes will depend upon a convoluted love triangle. The writers of Fringe are of high caliber, and so I think that Weiss’s “which Olivia” response to Nina’s questions was a reductive response intended to stir the audiences. However, there’s more to love and loyalty than simple attraction; if the writers do what I know they’re capable of, then the plot of “Peter’s decision” will ultimately explore the many facets of love, loyalty, and from that, free will/fate.

    I think the writers are already starting to delve into that aspect. For one thing, “He still has feelings for her,” is what Simon concluded from reading Peter’s thoughts, from reading Peter’s mind. But what someone thinks and feels are two entirely different things, which is why the concept of “mind vs. heart” is such a common theme in many creative (I’ll let you define what entails ‘creative’) works. If you compare Nick Lane and Simon Phillips, one a reverse empath, possessing the ability to affect emotions, and the latter the ability to read thoughts, the conclusion that thoughts and feelings are discrete states can be reached.

    Anyway, sorry for my blabbing. The bottom line is that “feelings” and “thoughts” are two different things, supported by the fact that the manipulation of them are two separate Cortexiphan-induced abilities. Secondly, Peter’s decision will not be so simple as “which Olivia,” and hopefully the writers will take advantage of this plot to explore some other core topics and layers of these topics.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • real1 says

      I would love to hear it’s : heart and mind . not taking off any one from another .

      Nice review Roco , and i don’t think when Olivia did talk with Peter about her thinking any of out of character , Peter in ep9 … was saying to her about his relation with Fauxlivia in cafeteria and in front of her 2 cups of coffee .. I really can’t imagine any man would say that to his girlfriend without putting a possibility that she may through the coffee on his face . ;)

      Still I believe that Olivia is better than Fauxlivia , Fauxlivia much fun ? but without brain .

      Like: Thumb up 0

    • Mala says

      I bet Peter’s thoughts in that coffee and great dress moment were something like “if you were still the other Olivia, we wouldn’t be by now just drinking coffee…..”…and that´s what Simon heard.

      Like: Thumb up 0

    • mist says

      I totally agree with you, reading someones mind and reading/sensing someones feelings is two completely different things/abilities!

      Like: Thumb up 0

  3. lena says

    I totally agree with you, Roco! there were some things that really bothered me in this episode, especially the way they draw olivia’s character. i wouldn’t call her needy but desperate (that’s, however, equally ooc given the last 2 years). and peter, well, don’t get me started… even walter was quite annoying this week.

    at least we got some nina. but the girly-talk was a bit odd and i mean not just for olivia. mhm. maybe i just don’t want my heroines to say things like that.

    my favourite line: “Peter tries to poison Olivia with otherworldly coffee.” I love you for writing comments like this!

    Like: Thumb up 0

  4. ok says

    great review as usual !
    but I’m quit

    ” Peter doesn’t deserve either woman”
    WHAT THE HELL!!!!! this is the worst line I’ve ever read in you’re reviews ROCO it really made me question the way you’re reacting to characters !
    I understand that you hate him but its not fair to throw such judgement like that LOL

    Like: Thumb up 0

  5. loveit says

    Interesting review and POV on the characters. While I agree that I disapprove of the current direction (which Olivia?!) I disagree generally with your character reviews. I would like Olivia to be a little more Dunhamator but I also believe that the situation in general is pretty foreign to her. We are left with the idea that Olivia has always been a loner. IMO she is reacting in some ways like a younger woman may react because she doesn’t have experience “talking about her feelings”, etc. This may be why she seems so needy and why she keeps blurting things out in the middle of cases.
    In regards to Peter, I don’t think it’s reasonable to think that Peter should so easily choose or that he even understands what’s going on in his head. We all carry baggage of old relationships and lovers. They inform who we are and how we relate to new relationships. In this case Peter is dealing with basically the exact same woman. I don’t buy that the two Olivia’s are so different that he consciously chose the other one or that he continues to do so. I think that he does have feelings for her – probably nostalgia and joy but also rage and embarrassment. How does someone extricate one Olivia from the other? They are the same.
    I think it would be the same as being in a relationship with someone and enduring a tragedy that somehow changes the person, for better or worse – temporarily or permanently. It is still the same person that you loved all along; you can’t just erase your experiences / memories or the effects of those dynamics.
    Lastly, I have a question – is it possible that Olivia is retaining some of Fauxlivia’s personality traits and not just her marksmanship (as was seemingly implied in this ep)? Is it not possible that part of the reason Olivia seems somewhat OOC is that she is? We believe that Fauxlivia is all smiles and confidence but often those that are the most insecure behave brashly and over-confidently towards others….just a thought.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  6. JennyDoe says

    Felt like 3 Observers this time… why did they all wear look-alike hats?? At the police scene, in the hospital entry scene another look-alike hat and the actual observer…

    Like: Thumb up 0

  7. Page 48 says

    “Some really nice storytelling elements as Simon passes out from Walter’s nonsense. Hey, we’ve all been there, Si”

    Oh yeah, Amen to that!

    Omid Abtahi has one of those faces that I just know I’ve seen before. A quick check of IMDB assures me that he’s been in every show I’ve every watched, including an episode of “Nikita” earlier this season.

    Buffy is in vogue on “Fringe” this season. Simon’s mind-reading difficulties were similar to Buffy’s experience in “Earshot”. What, on the surface, would seem like a gift, was really a crippling curse.

    And, of course, a few weeks back, it was “Marionette” offering a new take on Buffy’s “Some Assembly Required”. Both situations ended in predictable disaster.

    As there are apparently many ways to cross over to the AU, there is also no shortage of ways to interrogate an unconscious mind.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  8. Smgdesignz says

    I think the review is a bit harsh towards Peter. I rewatched the scene of Olivia asking him if he still thinks about Fauxlivia and I don’t get the feeling he’s trying to manipulate himself out of the corner or give some BS to Olivia. The last episode showed Peter trying to take control of everything going on in his life. I feel that perhaps he wants to move on with his life and with Olivia, but her insecurities are hindering that. Perhaps he thinks he’s made it clear to her that SHE is the one he wants to be with and is getting frustrated with her constantly questioning it. I thought that scene was a perfect balance of Peter’s frustrations and also his desire to make it work with Olivia. However relationships take two people and Olivia is halting any progress for them.

    I don’t care for her being so insecure about Fauxlivia. If she feels like she doesn’t smile enough or wear dresses she should take control of her life and change it. Olivia is strong and powerful woman and she’s being anything but as of late. Also, Olivia needs to think of what all Fauxlivia did and if put in her shoes would Olivia have done the same (in regards to the mission). My guess is not because Olivia would believe there’s another way, just as she does. So right there Olivia should realize that she is a better person than Fauxlivia.

    I enjoyed parts of this episode but on a whole it is my least favorite of the series. I felt the pacing was all off and scenes cut short to fill the hour. I was happy to see Sam Weiss back but that scene between him and Nina felt like a soap. And this idea of which Olivia Peter prefers determines the fate of the world? PUhlease! Fringe creative team – fix this quick or you will lose a loyal viewer. There’s a reason I don’t like soap operas.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • mlj102 says

      “However relationships take two people and Olivia is halting any progress for them. I don’t care for her being so insecure about Fauxlivia.”

      Yes, relationships take two people working towards it, but I don’t think it’s fair to say that Olivia is the one halting any progress for them. Peter is the one who messed it up by having a relationship with the wrong Olivia in the first place. And, yes, he should have known. And it would be unreasonable for him to expect that Olivia can return and they’ll be able to pick up where they left off. Especially if he still has any kind of feelings for alternate Olivia. Olivia has been hurt and betrayed and she’s going to need time to move past that. And in the meantime, Peter should be working hard to help her see that he does care about her and that she is loved for being who she is. I’ve said it many times, and I will continue to say it, but Peter is the one who needs to regain Olivia’s trust. Why should she trust him when he says that all along it was for her, when he obviously didn’t care enough to see when she wasn’t herself? Yes, Olivia needs to be willing to accept Peter’s sincere attempts at rebuilding the relationship, but her efforts should be secondary to Peter’s. And right now he hasn’t actively done anything to support his words or to prove to her that he does care about her.

      “If she feels like she doesn’t smile enough or wear dresses she should take control of her life and change it. Olivia is strong and powerful woman and she’s being anything but as of late.”

      I think that is kind of missing the point. It’s not about Olivia’s need to become a duplicate of alternate Olivia. It’s that she needs to feel that she is good enough just as she is. She should be able to feel loved and appreciated without having to change anything. From her perspective, alternate Olivia came in and not only took over her life, but she became the better Olivia with more positive qualities — the Olivia that everyone liked more than they like her. She feels inferior to alternate Olivia. And changing her own style and behavior to mimic alternate Olivia would not only be unnecessary, but it would also fail because she would never succeed in doing what alternate Olivia does as good as alternate Olivia does. And she shouldn’t have to. While someone should always be trying to improve themselves, you shouldn’t have to feel like you have to try to be someone you’re not. Olivia doesn’t need to change who she is. She needs to know that, while she may not smile as easily, she has other things that she does better that alternate Olivia could never duplicate. She needs to see that she can be herself and that’s good enough.

      Like: Thumb up 0

      • Peanut says

        Olivia does need to change but not to be like Fauxlivia. One of the major Fringe themes is balance, & that’s what Olivia needs to strive for. Olivia should emulate Fauxlivia in the sense of finding outlets—activities/people that serve as a counterbalance to what Sam Weiss calls Olivia’s “nightmare” job. Olivia can find her own path—not Fauxlivia’s path—to leaven her “gotta-save-the-world” mission by carving out some space for her personal life. Olivia could learn to knit or play the guitar, take up archery, collect dolls (well, not creepy ones), get on facebook & play Farmville, go to a concert (but not U2) or to the movies with her Observer buddies, etc., lots of possibilities to choose from. Olivia never takes a vacation—maybe she could go to Vermont to visit her new friend Simon—I hear the skiing there is good this time of year, & in Fringe distances, it’s probably only about 15 minutes outside of Boston (heh). Or she could go to Hawaii with Over-Here Lincoln or Over-Here ShirtlessFrank (if there is one) if the cold weather is too depressing—that should cheer Olivia up considerably.

        Like: Thumb up 0

  9. lizw65 says

    Someone mentioned that the title of this episode “Concentrate and Ask Again”, may have more signifigance than we realize. At the end of the ep, Olivia was told something she didn’t want to hear, perhaps because she asked the wrong question of the wrong individual–well, she implied that she wanted to know the answer, but it’s the same thing. (Really, someone as badly socialized as Simon is qualified to give her relationship advice and would even know how to properly process the information he recieved? Please.) And Nina, because she asked the wrong questions of Sam Weiss, received an answer that sounded pat and simplistic and made EVERYONE (the audience included) uncomfortable about the direction the show is taking. Does all this tie in with the Buddha book, and how we need to seek the answers inside ourselves rather than rely on outside sources? Anyway, I’ve kind of lost track of where I was going with this, but those are the thoughts I had.

    Oh and one other thing–didn’t Peter notice when Fauxlivia started taking her coffee differently from Ourlivia?

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Peanut says

      Simon was giving Olivia what she wanted—but it seems to fall into the category of “be careful what you wish for …”

      Not sure why Olivia won’t talk to Peter directly, as Nina suggested—maybe Olivia’s picking up the vibe that he’s keeping secrets from her (oh yeah—don’t think that you suspect that he’s the shapeshifter killer though). Maybe she’s not ready for an answer from him right now? She gives a pep talk to Simon that he should go talk to coffee girl (coffee—another Fringe theme?) but can’t take her own advice—or Nina’s advice. Just mired in misery right now, I guess.

      I wondered about the coffee thing too. You could explain away lots of things, but changing how you drink your coffee after several years—especially adding milk when you didn’t drink it that way previously—should have made Peter wonder what was going on. Maybe Fauxlivia used milk because she wasn’t used to Over-Here coffee.

      Like: Thumb up 0

      • KLA says

        Lizw65- Good catch on the Faulivia starting to take her coffee with milk. Just another thing to make Peter look a little more of a fool for not figuring out that she was a fake.

        Peanut-I am with you– Olivia needs to take her own advice and talk to Peter directly rather than all this backhand way of trying to see how he feels. You are always better hearing it directly from the horses mouth (unless the horse is hell bent on lying)

        Like: Thumb up 0

      • says

        What about when Olivia was over there. Did no one acknowledge that Olivia took it without milk ? Men !!! This proves that they do not notice the little things. Ay, carumba !!

        Like: Thumb up 0

        • Peanut says

          I’m wondering if they were drinking coffee–maybe drinking Ovaltine or tea or something else Over There? I don’t know if anyone says? Eliznate says that Walternate is able to get coffee, which may mean that ordinary people don’t have access to it. We know that they were drinking some kind of hot beverage Over There. There was a beverage machine in the Fringe Over-There office that Olivia hit a time or two because she couldn’t get it to work (yep, that would be Olivia, not Fauxlivia!)–don’t know if it was a coffee machine–maybe the elite Fringe Division there gets this “perk,” so to speak?

          Like: Thumb up 0

            • real1 says

              Olivia is very sensible and privet person , see how she was thinking that it’s awful thing that someone can open her email …., see it’s a little thing but very huge for her .

              Peter was trying to justify why he did order the wrong coffee … but obviously … he was thinking of Fauxlivia so he did order her fav coffee to Olivia ! …. it was logic that she will ask him about her and to let him see that she is also thinking about him .. about how he is feeling … whether if it for her or for alt-her , Peter doesn’t admitting that he has feelings for Fauxlivia … but Olivia isn’t stupid to let that go ….

              Like: Thumb up 0

            • real1 says

              As for Fauxlivia … I think she was knowing her mission and she will feel that she is the most genus one in her team .. she will not care if they did notice or not , as for Franl .. i think Walternat ordered to let him out of the town so he will not get involve with Olivia .. so no suffering for Fauxlivia . IMO

              Like: Thumb up 0

      • ScarecrowBoat says

        Not everyone drinks their coffee the same way every single day of their lives. For example, today I have cream and sugar in my coffee, but yesterday I had it black. There will be times where I drink it one way for months and then I switch it up and have it a different way. I know several other people who do this as well.

        It’s not unrealistic to think that someone might decide to drink their coffee differently after a few years of the same thing. I think you guys are over-analyzing it a bit.

        Like: Thumb up 0

        • number six says

          Right? I go through stages. I’m going through an “Olivia Dunham” stage right now and having my coffee black with sugar, but a few months ago it was coffee with lots of milk. And I don’t drink my coffee the same way everyday or even during the same day. Sometimes I lace it with other substances, legal and illegal ;)

          But because this is a TV show, it must be a Big Deal. Each style of coffee represents a distinct person and it also represents Peter’s confusion.

          Like: Thumb up 0

        • Peanut says

          Maybe the thought is that Peter should have noticed that the change in coffee habit occurred at the same time as the return from Over There?

          Like: Thumb up 0

          • jophan says

            A funny other thing is that in “Entrada”, Fauxlivia on her way home takes her last cup of coffee black — she declines milk or sugar.

            Like: Thumb up 0

  10. Ari says

    The thing is this neediness of Olivia’s isn’t new. It was what I hated about the show in the beginning. She was a little too desperate and revealing during the whole John thing and lets not forget how she blurted out the story of her stepfather to Peter, who she barely knew.

    Oddly enough, I find this exposure of her inner insecurities easier to understand for two reasons:
    1) She has just been through the emotional ringer: kidnapped, brainwashed, almost killed, Altlivia and Peter, etc. And despite this she has no outlet. Rachel has been absent, and like her or not, the two were obviously very close. The sad thing is, even if Rachel was here how could she even begin to explain, let alone get any kind of 2nd party interpretation of events. So Nina and Astrid become surrogate sisters.

    2) The real reason I’m okay with this (and this theory admittedly falls apart if Olivia doesn’t get back to normal soon) is that Olivia has always said that the truth was the most important thing. To get past something you must have the truth. I’m thinking about her take on Walter and the mother of the lab fire victim, but she said something similar to Simeon this episode. I think she has suspected from the moment Peter told her (that smile comment was both cruel and telling) that he has feelings for Altlivia. Despite feeling that this was true, she was constantly being told by Peter, by Astrid, and now by Nina that it wasn’t. Now I suspect that these people weren’t lying, they all wanted it to be true, but Olivia knew it wasn’t. And having just spent two months being forced to suppress her instincts about who she even was, I suspect she has just been trying to get to the truth. Hopefully, now that she has it, she can stop being so broken and start kicking ass again.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Pam says

      What a wonderful Review, ROCO! And, so much insight there! I totally agree with most of the stuff you’ve said except for this one here….

      “This is not the Olivia we grew up with. She’s become far too needy, and has developed a transparency that is in danger of undoing her as a serious character. The attempt to make Peter the focus is having a detrimental impact on the story’s actual flawed hero”

      Many have already disagreed in their comments and I only reiterate – Olivia is reticent but, we’ve never seen her in this kind of identity crisis before – and she has endured what none of us can even begin to imagine. So, it is not unnatural to look for relief from unexplored quarters. And, I believe Peter and Olivia may be really “made for each other” – like a lock & key – we may get more insight into this in the flash-back episode. I don’t mean this in the romantic way – but, in the superhero and the catalyst kind of way. So, I don’t find it hard to believe that with the Altliv situation, Olivia is finding a disturbance in tuning herself to Peter and that is affecting her whole being.

      “I appreciate the mythology, but Simon didn’t strike me as the logical or necessary leap for Walter to take, particularly without exploration more obvious alternatives.”

      Yes Sir – you are right on!

      And, with regard to Sam “the mysterious” Weiss’s quote that “which Olivia determines which universe”, I agree that it is a way too simplified way of putting it but, I tend to think that the Olivia Peter is with, is going to affect the fate of the universe in ways we may not have considered. For instance, Altliv, is all basically about survival and blind daredevilry – her seduction of Peter also stemmed from the same feeling. If Peter is with her, she may just pass on that instinct of self-preservation onto him and he might end up protecting her universe and destroying ours.

      Our Liv, on the other hand, represents intuition and a higher realm in the psychological plane which is called the divine, from which stems selflessness and love (not for one thing or person in particular but, a general exuding of the feeling). Olivia carries the “burden” of the whole universe (now two, to be exact) on herself and is the element of protection – so, being with her would turn Peter himself into a tool of creation and attune the machine the same way. Olivia and Alt-liv are really two sides of the same coin – the animal and the divine in the same entity called human and it remains to be seen which would come out winner in the end.

      Like: Thumb up 0

      • loveit says

        This is a REALLY interesting take on Olivia. I agree that Olivia will play the ultimate role in deciding the fate of universes. This is a very insightful take on that storyline!

        Like: Thumb up 0

  11. lilli says

    Well…I don’t really believe that the way in which they are writing Olivia is “out of character”. Let me explain my thought.
    You can be very strong and reserved about your own feelings. But when you are set, as she is, as you, Roco, said, on the “I’m gonna win back what is mine”, strenght also becomes to be able to retreat on something if that can help on getting what you want. A not very strong person might decide to stay on his own ground and float on his own sadness. It’s easier. It doesn’t require any strenght.
    A strong person acts, even tentatively, to find a solution. And a woman like Olivia can do both things. She is strong, but she has decided to “float” on feeling before. But when she got Over There for Peter, and also now, she decided to act. Also, after her experience Over There, Olivia is madly motivated. Not only to save her world, but also, as you said again, “not to be a victim”.
    She is not “needy” while asking for other people’s advice. She knows very well that to stay trapped in your own mind and to elaborate everything there on your own can lead to lose some perspective. That’s why she turns to Nina, or Astrid, or anyone who can give a break from the million thoughts spinning inside her brain. She wants to do everything she can to be efficient, even in this emotional matter. That’s SO her.
    If there is something she learned on the other side is that to lean on people, to set your HOPES in others, is not a weakness.
    About the Machine…I kinda believe that Sam has its own plan. I believe that the First People, and he is one of them, have their own plan, and that they want to save both worlds.
    To do that, they are doing everything they can to “tune” Peter towards both. To be “tuned” is a simple feeling of belonging. It is not a rational choice. It’s not even a choice itself. It’s like a raw, animal feeling. Love, the deep,solid one, is one feeling that can cause deep belonging and attachment.
    Now, if the infamous babygate it’s true, what better way to do that then to have him loving our Olivia and having a child(the most raw,animal bond human beings have to feel where they belong to)with the other one?Not really my storyline-cup-of-tea, but not totally irrational.
    It’s not only universes we’re talking about. It’s people.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  12. Sam says

    Did anyone else think that Olivia’s shot at the final assassin was pretty flawless?
    I was thinking that was a little bit of Fauxlivia’s expert marksmanship still lingering.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • real1 says

      I am one of who is thinking that’s not true ! .. i mean Olivia was good at shooting without that big deal of Fauxlivia is better in shooting , back in s1 and s2 Olivia has this ability to shoot , so am not buying that Fauxlivia is better in shooting and having a praise as how they were telling us in “Olivia” , Olivia is good as she is and she isn’t need anything from the other her to let her feel better . what Olivia needs that someone can see her as how she is , I think she had 2 .. AltBroyles and David Jones , both appreciated her and her valuable .

      Like: Thumb up 0

      • T says

        I would have to agree with Sam. The writers intentionally brought out Olivia’s shooting skills by having the agent ask her.

        Like: Thumb up 0

  13. Peanut says

    Thanks for the thoughtful & entertaining review, Roco.

    The case itself was not that interesting—blue powder turns people into boneless “bog bodies.”

    Nina & Sam. In the Same Scene. With Colliding Universes (Bowling Balls). Interesting to see two such devious characters as Nina & Sam together.

    Notice the phrasing of Sam Weiss, “What I can tell you …,” which indicates that there may be things that he can’t or won’t tell Nina. He could just be evil, but I don’t think so. If Sam intended to be unhelpful, he would not have warned Nina that Peter might choose Fauxlivia, rather than Olivia. That actually was useful information. So I gather that, in a future episode, Nina enlists Walter to act as pimp for the universe to throw those two crazy kids together.

    In the scene of Olivia with Nina at MD, Nina wonders if there was any information about the First People in Fauxlivia’s “Dear Diary,” as Roco calls it. Olivia says that there’s not anything about them or the Bowflex of Doom in there. That means that Olivia must have read the entire diary (300 pages of fun reading). That may be one reason why she is so down in this episode. I have this mental picture of the diary being on her bedside table, next to her copy of “Advanced Forensic Science.” Maybe Olivia needs to find something a bit lighter to read for a change (but not that Buddha-killing book—look what reading that thing has done to Peter).

    DarthPeter & the real Olivia must have taken separate vacations, & their clones or robot versions took their places in this episode? DarthPeter was not entirely gone because he was definitely on the phone with someone at the hospital, in the hall, while Olivia talked to Simon at the table. Simon must have been picking up Peter’s thoughts while Peter was on the phone—with maybe a co-conspirator? I was hoping that Simon’s mindreading was going to give Olivia some really helpful information such as “Peter’s trying to find more shapeshifters to kill.”

    So is there something preventing Olivia from wearing a dress, compared to Fauxlivia? This is not like a personality trait that might be difficult to change. I don’t recall Fauxlivia wearing a dress in the Over-Here episodes—maybe she mentioned it in her Dear Diary?

    The Cortexiphan trials took place before Peternate was taken so Simon wouldn’t have known about the kidnapping. The guy who has possibly the most valuable ability (mind reading), & he gets kicked out of the study? The trials ended in 1983—that’s what we’ve been told—& Peternate was kidnapped in 1985. Somebody get on continuity, stat! Bad Robot! Of course, Walter wouldn’t have wanted Simon involved in the recent Fringe cases because Simon would have been able to detect “The Secret of Peter’s Origins,” & that, of course, is not a problem now that Peter knows the truth. Simon mentions that his ability appeared when he was 10 years old—but that seems old for a Cortexitot. We don’t know much about the Ohio trials, but I would have thought that, like the Jacksonville trials, they were conducted on preschool children.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Cortexifan says

      Peanut, you might be on to something about Nina enlisting Walter. [spoiler removed – ed]. He’s always tried to get them together from the start anyway.

      Roco, always enjoy your reviews and how you cover all sides. Can’t wait for your observations and the next quiz. Thanks for putting so much time in to this. I spend all day yesterday trying and failing to even come close to what you see and then to put it to paper.

      Like: Thumb up 0

  14. Roneo says

    I believe Olivia’s being very brave. She takes her pain and her fear, and looks rigth at them. This is something she has to deal with; the sooner the best. As much as it can hurt. Thát´s how I see this unusual vulnerabilty of our former Dunhamator.
    If I was her, the relationship with Peter would have only a way: reset to zero. From now on, if something has to be, it will be.
    I’m sad cause I liked Peter A LOT; but I don´t like at all what writers are doing with the character right now. I would love that the future course of the show will prove me wrong.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  15. Kira says

    I had a field day! :P
    (Nina, numbers, colors, cortexi kids, Sam, Petah’s thing for Altlivia)

    I think Olivia is the one who once again gonna step back and let Peter sort out his feelings.

    Peter doesn’t have to ‘fix things’ with Olivia, more than he has to try understand himself. Because this is the third or fourth time that he gives his pro-active speech and in the next chapter flips to reactive.

    And the Nina-Sam face-off, I wonder if the camera motion was meant to show the fuzzy intentions of Nina and the fuzzy knowledge that we have of her,
    Has she a real influence on Sam? (like with the CIA agent and Broyles).
    Sam’s body language speaks loud.

    I guess Olivia’s behaviour is a form of assimilation/purging of Altlivia’s experiences.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Peanut says

      Someone suggested that having Nina & Sam in the same room together caused warping of the universe (heh)! Thus the strange camera angles.

      Like: Thumb up 0

  16. says

    Second week in a row I’ve voted the same overall score.

    Agree 100% that the Sam statement at the end about ‘Whoever Peter picks the others universe will be destroyed’ is without a question of a doubt the dumbest turn in the history of Fringe (and we all know the show deserves a much more rewarding conclusion than that).

    Like: Thumb up 0

  17. KLA says

    Great review Rocco, and real quick!!! Gives me something to do during this somewhat boring Superbowl.

    I agree with you in that I don’t really like the way Olivia is being portrayed. She seems so desperate, which makes me think that her feelings for Peter are very deep, perhaps deeper than I thought. I guess it is understandable, but confronting Peter at crime scenes is getting a little old for me. Maybe he needs to take the bull by the horns and confront her and tell her how he really feels. Yes, I know that he is trying to give her space, but the guy is becoming a target practice for Olivia and it is time for this to come to an end. Maybe he needs to come with the tears to get through to her. Maybe then we can really see how the guy feels, and that may also give him a chance to give Olivia a proper “I’m sorry” that she never really heard.

    As for Sam Weiss, while I initially thought he was up to no good, now I am thinking that he may be steering folks in the right direction to get whatever needs to be accomplished, accomplished. Kind of like the Observers, but in a different way. Also, I thought that Nina’s reaction to him being one of the First People lacked a lilttle surpise. It is almost as if she has been looking for one of them for a while and was giddy that she got to talk to one. I don’t know, but something is just not right about that whole scene.

    Last, PEANUT- great line above: “Nina enlists Walter to act as pimp for the universe to throw those two crazy kids together.” Well done!!!!

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Peanut says

      I figure that the reason Olivia is talking about her personal life at work—well it’s not the first time, is it?—is so the writers can speed the plot along faster, combining crime scene & P/O drama. I get the impression that sometimes the writers are rushing us along.

      Like: Thumb up 0

  18. megan says

    The fate of the universe CAN NOT rely on a love triangle!!! I mean, really, it comes down to witch Olivia Peter likes better?! I feel like the relationship angle is getta kinda old:/ Decent episode, I really enjoyed the character, would like to see him again. And it was great seeing Olivia all dolled up!

    Like: Thumb up 0

  19. Jenn Hoff says

    Something I thought was significant was finally being able to hear Walter’s thoughts! They were so jumbled and you didn’t know if the things swimming around rapidly in his brain were significant or just mumbo-jumbo. It gives insight into how he works and functions.
    Also, I don’t think that Peter had distain for the Cortexiphan kids at all! It was disgust directed at his father for what he’s done. It was said more like an accusation than anything else. It seemed along the lines of how you’d hear someone say, “how many more people have to die before you figure this out?!” I think it would be hard loving a father who’s done such horrible things to other human beings.
    Lastly, I know people are bashing the love-triangle thing and the fact that Olivia would talk about this, but realistically speaking, it is a driving force of the show. Honestly, when I watch it, those are the parts I’m watching for. I like it when the writers throw us a bone and have the characters actually TALK about what they’re feeling. I don’t think it’s real life to be guarded 24/7 or never act on feelings you have for years on end. This makes it more realistic and fun to watch. All the same things we love about the show are still there, PLUS there’s this extra element in the mix.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  20. epoh says

    I think the show is in desperate need of the ‘old’ Olivia. From the start of the season we’ve had ‘Olivia’ as ‘Fauxlivia’ and ‘Fauxlivia’ as ‘Olivia’, meaning that with the exception of “Entrada” we have been without “our olivia”(did that make sense?). And since she’s returned from the AU, she only seems to be highlighted in an episode when it has something to do with Peter, which was great to watch in “Marionette” but has gotten a little tired in the episodes following.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  21. real1 says

    I did re-watch the ep for 4 times !! … I want to know something … if any one else did notice what I noticed :

    at the hospital , while Olivia was holding the notepaper .. Peter did ask about “Maryann” How on earth he did figure that ? and why Olivia did say no ?

    Like: Thumb up 0

  22. Melissa says

    Moreover, I’m not in love with the outcome of two universes resting on which Olivia stirs Peter’s pants the most. I understand that love can influence a person’s outlook, which is the larger idea here, but it’s dangerously close to over-cooking the Romance Goose.

    Exactly. I’m the biggest Peter/Olivia shipper but this… this reduces the story and the characters in such a way. I really hope there’s some brilliant hidden plot twist coming from this because it doesn’t look good at all.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  23. abulia says

    “The direction of the story was interesting enough without labelling it in such direct fashion. And as far as I’m concerned, Peter doesn’t deserve either woman. It’s just not something I can see myself staying invested in. Furthermore, I don’t like the idea of Olivia being a pawn for Peter’s whims.”

    “Out-Of-Character. While I appreciate that they’re telling a specific romantic story that has gleaned several rewards, for it to work it’s required Olivia to act out-of-character. This is not the Olivia we grew up with. She’s become far too needy, and has developed a transparency that is in danger of undoing her as a serious character. The attempt to make Peter the focus is having a detrimental impact on the story’s actual flawed hero. There has to be another way.”

    You made the point Roco. I mean I always hope that this is another stage of the journey for Peter to become a man and finally understand what lies below Olivia. I mean, he let him get caught up by the easier smile!? By the different “circumstance”!? Not that I think Altlivia is just an easy smile, but it seems how peter looks at people in this storytelling. I really would have liked for Peter to be with OurOlivia and feel how wonderful she is, but at this point give her John Scott back. he would never have failed telling the differencies. And yes, she is too important and too proud as a character to being submitted to this plot, and to the whims of Peter (if he doesn’t aknowledge). I mean she’s the wise!
    And the way he seems to see Cortexikids and their world of sorrow is another proof.

    “And I get it, it’s difficult for him. But what I would like to see is for him to be honest with Olivia. For me, it’s obvious that he’s more attuned to Altlivia, so why string Olive along? Is she his fall-back chick? Fallback Dunham and let this one go.

    I hope that the last look she gives after reading Simon’s words means that she’s over. Or at least that she’s done running after him. Usually Peter is the one who does that! AHAH.
    And I really hope for Peter to become a man, that’s what I really would like, otherwise Olivia better on her own…Lincoln Lee maybe!?

    Like: Thumb up 0

  24. Cherioki says

    I think the writers will punch us in the guts with some sort of a twist. Assuming Peter choosing OurOlivia is the tool for creation, what if choosing Ourolivia actually leads to a weapon of destruction? His heart may want Olivia, but his frequency or whatever it is says he has to choose Faux-Olivia. Screw you writers, I can just see this happening.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  25. Laura says

    “She’s another Cortexiphan subject – forged in the rings of Saturn, embellished in the mountain of Etna, dipped in the Sea of Tranquility. Sometimes you kids are immune to each others abilities”.
    OMG Roco…nice reference of the beautiful and ardent mountain of mine ;)

    Like: Thumb up 0

  26. coolfringepuff says

    About the book Dr. Spock’s Baby and Child Care: 8th Edition
    #1 rule of parenting: “Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do.”

    The quote refers to Our Olivia, meaning she has to trust what she believes in. That’s why the title is “Concentrate and Ask Again”.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  27. Inter-dimensional Dave says

    I agree with everyone that has trouble stomaching the fate of the universes can come down to the end game of a love triangle. Please no. Am I to understand that the machine is just a giant “mood ring” for Peter?

    I like Roco’s reference to the Id Monster form “Forbidden Planet”. The Id Monster was the creation of the “mindless primitive” that dwells in our subconsious. In the movie, the planet wide machine acted on mere thought including those of the subconcious. But I wonder if Peter’s state of mind or “frequency” can ultimately decide which universe will survive. He can make a conscious decision to choose either Olivia but the seed of doubt will always be in his mind. Let’s revisit this exchange between Sam Weiss and Nina…

    Nina: “What determines Peter’s frequency”

    Sam “It depends on his state of mind, which in turn depends on who he ends up with – Olivia from here, or Olivia from over there. Whichever one he chooses it will be her universe that survives”.

    My point is no matter what conscious decision Peter makes his subconcious may think otherwise. His “choice” and its related frequency will have nothing to do with it. If the BBM is anything like the Krell machine one universe is screwed no matter what choice Peter makes.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  28. Pam says

    What a wonderful Review, ROCO! And, so much insight there! I totally agree with most of the stuff you’ve said except for this one here….

    “This is not the Olivia we grew up with. She’s become far too needy, and has developed a transparency that is in danger of undoing her as a serious character. The attempt to make Peter the focus is having a detrimental impact on the story’s actual flawed hero”

    Many have already disagreed in their comments and I only reiterate – Olivia is reticent but, we’ve never seen her in this kind of identity crisis before – and she has endured what none of us can even begin to imagine. So, it is not unnatural to look for relief from unexplored quarters. And, I believe Peter and Olivia may be really “made for each other” – like a lock & key – we may get more insight into this in the flash-back episode. I don’t mean this in the romantic way – but, in the superhero and the catalyst kind of way. So, I don’t find it hard to believe that with the Altliv situation, Olivia is finding a disturbance in tuning herself to Peter and that is affecting her whole being.

    “I appreciate the mythology, but Simon didn’t strike me as the logical or necessary leap for Walter to take, particularly without exploration more obvious alternatives.”

    Yes Sir – you are right on!

    And, with regard to Sam “the mysterious” Weiss’s quote that “which Olivia determines which universe”, I agree that it is a way too simplified way of putting it but, I tend to think that the Olivia Peter is with, is going to affect the fate of the universe in ways we may not have considered. For instance, Altliv, is all basically about survival and blind daredevilry – her seduction of Peter also stemmed from the same feeling. If Peter is with her, she may just pass on that instinct of self-preservation onto him and he might end up protecting her universe and destroying ours.

    Our Liv, on the other hand, represents intuition and a higher realm in the psychological plane which is called the divine, from which stems selflessness and love (not for one thing or person in particular but, a general exuding of the feeling). Olivia carries the “burden” of the whole universe (now two, to be exact) on herself and is the element of protection – so, being with her would turn Peter himself into a tool of creation and attune the machine the same way. Olivia and Alt-liv are really two sides of the same coin – the animal and the divine in the same entity called human and it remains to be seen which would come out winner in the end.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  29. cvita says

    Just some wild ideas regarding Sam, first (or other) people and BBM. These are just ideas and I’m wondering are they make any sense to you?

    We as audience have been hinted not to trust Sam Weiss. We have ester egg for that in this episode as well, the code for Bell’s safe which refers to May 20th 2010 (air date of Overe there II). Also Sam’s words IMO imply that we should not trust him because he is clearly and only talking about destruction and no word of creation. IMO this can imply that he has (v)angeda and can also imply that he serves as advocate for the destruction. Let me explain where this idea comes form.

    So, we all now that BBM can be used to create OR (or is it maybe AND?) destroy. So if Sam is advocate for destroy then who advocates for creation? It seems that we are missing other player(s) in this ancient game. If you have a device which can do more than one thing it is quite logical to presume that there is more than one group and that each of them is advocating for one of the possible solutions. And if this is some ancient “game” it is also logical that this game has its own referees and in this game they are called “Observers”.

    Also one more thing, regarding BBM which is definitely responding to Peter (no secret about that). First people (or somebody else) foresaw that this BBM will react to certain DNA, so I’m wondering why they made a machine to fit a person with a giant flaw in his DNA? Both Peters (and we can presume all other Peters) had a life-threatening genetic disease at age of 8. So is this disease a test for universes? If the universe is developed enough to come with the cure it has a chance to play with BBM? So was the disease some kind of test or was something done to Peter from one of the players in previously mentioned “game” in order to gain advantage? Any thoughts on this?

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • KLA says

      Cvita- Wow- you raise some great points, and especially about both Peters having life threatening diseases. I almost forgot about that. With regard to the Observers, we know that they have been around a long time, and it would appear given that they have said that the usually do not get involved, it is entirely possible that they are referees. However, I have to think that they are a little more than that as by getting Walter to “release” Peter in Firefly, they are putting things in place to deal with upcoming events, and probably seriously prepping poor hapless/clueless Peter for something. So maybe they are referees and assistant coaches all in one.

      With regard to Sam, I wonder if he is really one of the first people. I know he said that he was “a lot older than he looks” to Olivia, but he seems like more of a keeper of history of those people– Kind of like the Vulcan counsel from Star Trek who kept the history of the people. I tend to think of him as similar to the Observers in that he may see many possiblities, but not anything with finality, and that while he can steer people in one direction or another, he is not in control.

      It will be real interesting to see how all of these things play out.

      Does anyone know how many episodes we are getting this season??

      Like: Thumb up 0

      • cvita says

        I also think that Sam dosen’t have to be the first people but is aware of them.

        There should be 22 episodes in this season.

        Like: Thumb up 0

  30. thatgirlfriday says

    “The crumb of comfort is that Sam Weiss is apparently not to be trusted – and that was clearly illustrated in this scene. That doesn’t necessarily mean he’s ‘bad’, but he clearly has a vagenda. What?”

    He does seem to have a vagenda, lol. But I couldn’t agree with you more- Weiss is shadier than Nina!

    I love these episode recaps!

    Like: Thumb up 0

  31. matt says

    I’m assuming the episode title is a refference to the magic 8 ball?

    I’m calling Olivia Dunhamnator aka magic 8Ball from now on lol

    Like: Thumb up 0

  32. mlj102 says

    I think I’ve made it pretty clear all season that I was not a fan of the idea of a love triangle taking place, and this is exactly why. This episode and this review, highlight everything that I was afraid would happen if they went that route. And that’s not a good thing.

    First, you’ve got the fact that it is causing them to be out of character. It was bad enough when it was just Peter and we were expected to just accept that he didn’t realize when it wasn’t Olivia. But now Olivia is starting to get out of character. While I don’t think her actions are as out of character as Roco and others have suggested, it is getting worse with each passing episode. I can understand a lot of her actions, but I agree with Roco that the story is taking it too far and making her out to be overly needy and insecure. Marionette showed her and her reactions perfectly. But all this wallowing in self-pity and constant wishfulness is just too much for our Olivia. And really, it’s beneath her. She shouldn’t have to do anything to earn Peter’s affection… If he wants Olivia to know she was the one he cared about, then he should be the one working to re-establish that relationship, not the other way around. Yes, she’s heartbroken, but that’s different from desperately seeking any kind of sign that he might still care. The whole thing is portraying Olivia in a very pathetic way, and I don’t like that.

    Additionally, it’s taking over the focus of the bigger story. I don’t have any problem with a show developing a relationship between two of the characters as long as it remains natural and in the background. The love triangle here has gone against both of those conditions. And though I continue to believe that Sam’s suggestion that the surviving universe will depend on which Olivia Peter chooses goes beyond the superficial romantic notion of it all, it’s becoming far too much a part of the main story for my liking. I preferred it back in Season two when it was present, but subtle. It says something that the biggest topic of conversation, debate, and speculation this entire season has centered around the love triangle. Even the majority of this review focused on that. And that’s just too much.

    The love triangle is far too much of a soap opera tactic for my liking. For me, it cheapens the story and it diminishes the value of the emotion they are trying to convey. At this point, I’m not sure I could buy it if they did restore the original Peter/Olivia relationship so that they did end up together. The writers/showrunners are really going to have to do a lot in order to come back from this. And that would start with toning it down in future episodes. However, I worry that that’s not going to happen anytime soon. But they had better be careful, because if they keep this up much longer, they’re going to lose a lot of support, and that’s really not something they can afford right now.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Peanut says

      mj102–

      I agree with what you are saying about the Peter-Olivia relationship. I have been mostly neutral about P/O (though leaning toward possible Over-Here ShirtlessFrank-Olivia at the moment). If The Powers That Be wanted to throw them together, I didn’t necessarily object. TPTB said that they were going to make the couple work for their relationship, which was OK with me. I did not, however, expect the TPTB to put us through the 12 Labors of Hercules–& I, frankly, became worn out with the “Sturm und Drang” (storm & stress) somewhere around Labor #5 (the Augean stables). Enough already! Maybe it’s time for Olivia to move on.

      Like: Thumb up 0

  33. KLA says

    GGGGGGGrrrrrrrrrrrr. I have Fringe on the brain. 2 comments.

    1. Sam Weiss- First I thought he was good, then possibly bad after this episode. Now I think that he had some connection with William Bell while on the other side that somehow Walternate figured out and was out to get him. Let’s not forget that in Over There 2 in Walternates old Harvard Lab there was the phrase “A DEMONS TWIST RUSTS”, which can mean “Don’t trust Sam Weiss.” This may be why he is over here and connected to Nina, Olivia, and maybe soon to be Peter. He knows what is coming and is steering folks in the right place.

    2. Peter (aka Petah). Given that he has already indicated that “there has to be a better way” to Faulivia in response to the question about one world surviving over another, I think that Sam Weiss’s statement to Nina is a ruse as part of the plan to get Peter to fulfill his destiny. I bet that Peter is secretly trying to figure out what is going on so that he can find that better way, and has no intention on destroying one universe over the other. He was just a little pissed off about the shapreshifters, so hence the Darth Maul like actions. Other than that though, I think he will be the hero here.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Pam says

      You are right Olivia vs Fauxlivia might be a ruse to get Peter into action or it might be a trigger for Nina to push Olivia into seducing Peter. Question is, will Olivia do it? Fauxlivia did exactly that to keep her mission afloat – now if Olivia knows that the fate of universes is at stake, will she come up with her own vagenda? I guess not – and that choice (and many other choices), more than circumstances are what differentiate our Olivia from Fauxlivia.

      Like: Thumb up 0

  34. Pierce says

    While no one likes to see Olivia in such a vulnerable, insecure state of mind, I have to whole heartedly disagree that the love triangle (from a storyline pov) has taken over the show or that Olivia isn’t in the the exact mind frame one would expect for her to be in after what she’s endured. She deserves to be able to sort out what she’s feeling and talk about it with Peter or whomever she sees fit. It’s only been four episodes in which this has unfolded. Four. And in the meanwhile, Olivia has continued to perform her job with the same efficiency she’s always done.

    Whether it’s this blog, TWoP, EW’s or some other random reviewers comment section, THE AUDIENCE has focused on little else besides the love triangle. If the other Olivia might be pregnant. Peter is being a jerk and doesn’t deserve Olivia. Olivia needs to buck up (because I don’t like it) and stop wallowing too much. So, if it seems like the love triangle has taken over the show, that’s because that’s all anyone is talking about. Not the implications of what the Oberservers are up to. Not what’s going on inside Peter’s head. Why Bell had a copy of the first people stowed away and was looking for others. What deeper implications does Sam Weiss’s comments to Nina mean? What else has he shared with Nina? Wasn’t this an interesting time for the CIA spook to reappear? Who exactly is he anyway? Just how many more Cortexiphan kids are going to crawl out of the woodwork? What else does Walter know that he hasn’t shared right yet? A dozen other things have taken place over the course of the past four episodes besides the few scenes of Olivia and Peter talking about the other Olivia.

    I apologize if this sounds harsh, and I don’t mean to target anyone, but part of the fun of watching this show is coming to this blog and other places to read what others took away from the episode. To say it’s been disappointing of late to read comment after comment focusing on the love triangle solely is quite the understatement.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  35. John says

    Seems this author of this blog needs her male characters to be perfect. No one “deserves” anyone. You get what you choose.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  36. John says

    Seems this author of this blog needs her male characters to be perfect. No one “deserves” anyone. You get what you choose. Some people choose less wisely than others. I agree though that the fate of the world resting on Peter’s lady choice is a bit contrived. I imagine he will find a third way and get his Jesus thing on and save everybody and die in the attempt.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  37. Iván says

    I have a theory. Sam Weiss cannot be trusted, because he knows more than he tells [the obvious conclusion]. But, why he knows so much?, maybe he is part of the first people (descendant) and like other supposed members (the observers) he shares the knowledge of this lost civilization. The difference between the observers and Sam and The Rogue (Mosley), the last two follow his own rules.

    Everyone can expand this theory in his own imagination, but you can denied if Sam is really a first people, this is a good reason to not trust in him.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  38. Laura says

    After having (finally !!!!) seen the ep, I can add my comments, too.
    I noticed a lot of us pointed put the same things, that is, mainly contrivances in the “Peter’s choice” business, and Sam’s behaviour.
    I totally agree with that, whilst I think Oliviaìs behaviour was not out of characer, just a woman way of acting. Very sweet.
    I liked the episode, I’m not a fan of the “22 out of 22 mythology”episodes way of thinking, there has to be a break somewhere, just to make the point. Maybe its’ me, but I needed a break from Peter-Vader….;)
    And this one was a nice way to introduce a new character, Simon, who I’m sure we will see again pretty soon.
    I sincerely believed Sam Weiss was a good dude, since he helped Olivia a lot during the last season, but, as many others stated, now I’m not sure about that. For instance, how the heck does he know every damn thing???????
    Mystery.Fringe mysteries.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  39. giorgio - Greece says

    Quite honestly though, I really don’t like the path the storyline’s taking with this episode. Not one bit.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  40. Pam says

    Many here have come back with the “don’t trust Sam Weiss” idea. Why does Sam suddenly become untrustworthy when he says that the fate of the universes is in Peter’s little head and that he may choose either Olivia? He is probably still trying help by warning Nina and indirectly asking Olivia to start working on getting Peter back, rather than waiting for him to make the move. Unfortunate as it is, Olivia may not have the choice to desert Peter and move on – if that is where the story is taking us, maybe Olivia has to stay with Peter for the sake of (two) universe (s). I don’t believe if Peter is with our Olivia, she would consciously or unconsciously, allow Peter to destroy one universe while the other survives.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • KLA says

      Pam- that is certainly a possiblity that Sam is trying to help by warning Nina. It is just so hard to figure out everyone’s vagenda.

      I also wonder if Sam and Peter have already been in contact with each other and we just don’t know it. That can be a curve ball that we would never see coming. I say that because somehow Peter knew where to find that lady-shapeshifter that he wasted in the Alley. One minute He was with Olivia at the dead MD doctor’s house, then he got a message, and the next thing we know he is right on the tail of this shifter. He has to be working with someone, and why not Sam??? Also, I still have not figured out when he had time to waste the Doctor, which may further suggest that he is working with someone.

      Like: Thumb up 0

  41. matt says

    I love how Peter’s power (symbiosis with machines) is one of the observers’ powers just like Olivia’s power (travek through worlds and ?) and the other cortexi kids. I think they were each designed/chosen to have one of the each of the abilities the observers have and to use that one power maybe better?

    the observers are outside the universe right? they can’t interfere because I think they might be extinct already in our universe but alive in time (maybe why they can’t taste much? maybe they’re time is almost up so to speak) BUT WHAT THEY DO HAVE is the apparently inherent ability to hear thoughts, to travel through space-time, to stop a bullet by altering time, by taking others through space time (like Olivia) and most interestingly to myself, the ability (just like Peter) to mesh with a machine and power/control it (like they do with cars in august and firefly, their phones in firefly at the end of the robbery scene and elsewhere, their guns in august which peter can also power) and they can kick some serious ace as we now know from firefly robbery scene…

    so, why are the cortexi-kids (which may, and probably does, include peter) so much like the observers? are they trained/designed to fight/stop them?

    Like: Thumb up 0

  42. ProperVillain says

    Did anyone else notice the books that Nina’s hands went by when she was in that storage room full of William Bell’s belongings? One of them was Dr Spock’s book on child rearing. Classic!

    Like: Thumb up 0

  43. Tash says

    i still dont get why they killed the people in the lift or tried to kill the people at the art museam thing
    Who were they??
    What had they done to piss the blue powdery people off??
    Also its wierd cos it actually me longer to read this reviewymabob and all comments then to actually watch the episodee

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • says

      “i still dont get why they killed the people in the lift or tried to kill the people at the art museam thing
      Who were they??”

      The people targeted were involved in the weapons project that caused the former marines to develop a DNA pathogen that killed their unborn children.

      Like: Thumb up 0

      • Tash says

        but who were they
        and surely not everyone in the lift was dodgy
        and its kinda there fault anyway cos they let them give them the blue powdery stuff

        Like: Thumb up 0

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>