Fringe Rewatch: 1.20 Point Of New Return

Welcome to the rewatch for episode 20 of Fringe season 1 – “There’s More Than One Of Everything”. Join us as we breach the gates to the other side and bear witness to new possibilities.

We have renamed this episode: Point Of New Return.

Newly Observed Perspectives

  • Olivia feels guilty for Dunhamnating Walter. I’m glad that she shows remorse, but Walter had it coming, pastry shop or no pastry shop.
  • Nina never really explains why Jones was let go by Massive Dynamic. What did Jones do that was so bad? I mean that guy couldn’t hurt a fl..well, maybe Bellie had his reasons. Nina then suggests that Jones wanted to prove something to Bell – I guess crossing universes would have put Bellie in his place. This may tally with the earlier suggestion that ZFT mission was to ‘show off’ – which is still only part of what Jones was about.
  • After escaping from prison, Jones was ringing Massive Dynamic begging for a meeting with Bell (which I still find slightly ridiculous and somewhat beneath Jones), but did he know at this point that Bell was in an alternate universe? I’m still thinking that he must have known all along, but it could work the other way.
  • Nina keeps energy devices in her arm. Makes me wonder what else she has hidden in other ‘hidey-holes’, as they say.
  • “Stabilize, dammit!” Oh Jones. *swoons*.
  • As Peter arrives at his old beach house, the camera focuses on him through the red pane of glass. This is around the time when they had begun to really nail down the alternate universe markers.

  • It’s interesting how Peter’s memories awaken Walter’s memory of where he hid the universe plug. There’s something very interesting about that – obviously this relates back to Peter’s ability. We usually see it operate when he physically touches someone or something, but it’s fascinating to see it this time work with the touch of his memory. Perhaps this offers us a bit more insight into how Peter Power works – and we can point to his possible involvement in disarming the bomb in Ability as another example.
  • Earlier in the episode Nina suggests to Olivia that deep down she knows where Bellie is. I suspect that when Walter is explaining the alternate universe to Peter, and how something ‘was lost to him’, Peter knows what Walter is referring to – he just wont let himself believe it.
  • The brutality of Walter’s past intent momentarily breaches the surface as he explains to Peter:

“I became convinced that if only I could cross over myself, and I could TAKE from there, what I lost here.”

  • Becca’s Meadow. The sight of the first recorded “incident”, not far from Reiden Lake.
  • Peter’s mind is now conveniently hazy: “The man who attacked me in the woods?” That’s funny. I seem to remember it being the other way around.
  • I find this line from Walter even more interesting in light of Peter’s burgeoning ability to calm people. It looks like when he was younger he also found a clever way to transfer this power to work on himself:

“When you were a boy you were very sick, dying. And sometimes you got scared, and to calm yourself, to forget what you were going through you took to collecting coins.”

  • Of course, we could just take the coin at face value – but I kinda like the other possibility that young Peter used items such as coins to feel the calming effect of his own power. In rewatching this scene, I also like the duality of it all – young Peter used the coin to forget, while it served as a reminder for Walter.
  • It’s also interesting how Peter can’t remember the coin – even after he touches it. As we discover in the second season, this version of Peter gave his coin to his mother. Maybe he would have remembered his past had Walter somehow given him his original coin to hold?
  • In the past, I’ve assumed that Jones wanted to kill Bell, and while that probably was his intention, I wonder if there’s a small chance that, in actual fact, he just wanted to show Bell that he could do it. That he could cross universes, and who knows, join forces with him on the other side? Thanks to Peter, we’ll never truly know.
  • Fitting that Olivia should have to go up through levels (in the elevator) to meet with Bell. Sure, it goes hand in hand with being in the the towers, but it still gives us a nice representation of reaching another level of awareness.

Best retrospective performer: Anna Torv.

Best retrospective moment: Olivia meeting with Bell.

Retrospective episode rating: 9/10

Useful Links

Next rewatch episode – 2.01 “A New Day In The Old Town” – TBA.


  1. FinChase says

    That’s interesting that you show the picture of Olivia sitting on her bed with her suitcase beside her. Every time I watch this episode I’ve wondered where she was going. She doesn’t happy at all. I’ve speculated that there was more to the scene where Broyles came in to tell her that their investigation into Bell was being shut down by people “you don’t say no to.” I wonder if the rest of this scene involved him telling Olivia that they may be shut down altogether and that she is being transferred or sent on some assignment immediately. In the S2 premiere, we’re told that Charlie is in Quantico, and this would have only been a day or two after the events at Reiden Lake. Maybe he was being reassigned. If Olivia was being reassigned, she probably went against orders by going to New York to meet with (as she thought) Nina.

    If they’d taken a moment or two to explore this, it might have made the events in the S2 premiere a little more smooth, i.e., Broyles being called to Washington to explain about Fringe Division and the possibility that it would be shut down altogether. Maybe that’s why Broyles lost his cool office and the control center–the resources had already been reallocated.

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    • Pwnsauce says

      as many times as I’ve watched this episode, I never made that connection, but now that you mention it, the way she’s sitting on her bed, the way they focus in on the badge and gun next to each other, it all seems to point toward the shutting down of Fringe Division. Now that I see this, it feels like it could have been set up so much better, like they failed at putting that notion in our heads. I was always under the impression that only the investigation into William Bell was stopped, but then in ‘New Day’ I was surprised to find that the Fringe Division had actually been shut down. Either way, this was easily the best episode of Season 1.

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      • FinChase says

        Another thought along those lines just popped into my head while I was re-watching the S2 premier: Olivia asks Peter if it’s true they are being shut down. Now, I always assumed that someone had come and told her about this. But really, the woman’s in a Head Trauma unit, one day after being thrown headfirst through a windshield and declared brain-dead. It seems unlikely that anyone would bother her with that right then. It would make sense for her to know, however, if the last time she and Broyles met–that we saw–at the end of this episode, he told her they were probably going to be shut down.

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  2. LizW65 says

    “That’s interesting that you show the picture of Olivia sitting on her bed with her suitcase beside her. Every time I watch this episode I’ve wondered where she was going. She doesn’t happy at all.”

    Interesting–I never even picked up on that. Another possibility is that she took a pay cut and had to move to another apartment–when we see her in season one she has a fairly luxurious place with a marble fireplace and a front door that opens directly onto the street, but in season two she’s clearly in different digs that open into a hallway and Sam Weiss comments on the fact that she’s still living out of boxes. (Yeah, I know, they moved from NYC to Vancouver and had to find a different location…:D)

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    • FinChase says

      That’s an interesting thought. Yes, it is clearly a different interior, but they do use the same exterior shot from season 1. I wish they’d just addressed some of these little inconsistencies (which were no doubt caused as you say by the fact that they moved production from NYC to Vancouver) early on. They could have covered Olivia’s different apartment with one or two lines of dialogue, and we would have been fine with it.

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  3. Jodie says

    “We usually see it operate when he physically touches someone or something, but it’s fascinating to see it this time work with the touch of his memory. Perhaps this offers us a bit more insight into how Peter Power works – and we can point to his possible involvement in disarming the bomb in Ability as another example.”

    That’s right on, Roco. As another example, I’ll also point out again, that I still think that I’m right that in NWP, Peter influenced farmer Craig to kill his victims by removing parts of their brains. He did this by using his mind to influence him. After I watched this episode again, I noticed that Craig had glass containers in his shed that contained organs (not brains), and they were not from cattle (too small). He’d killed before, but I think that Peter, sitting in that cafe that night and obsessing over resent events, caused Craig to change the way he killed. And Craig was there that night: he was waiting for his next victim to leave the cafe.

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  4. number six says

    This was a very exciting finale. Olivia traveling to the other side was well done, even though the method William Bell used is still unclear. And I liked how the Bishops and the FBI converged in the same place at the same time to save the day once again. I was a bit sad to see Jones die, but he had run his course as a character and he had to make space for more exciting villains in S2.

    I don’t know how I missed Broyles sitting at Nina’s bedside at the hospital like a good husband the first time. Now I understand The Kiss in the S2 premiere much better. Talking about those two, I liked how their knowing glances, as Olivia proceeded to make connections of The Pattern cases, could be either of pride or amusement, since they already knew everything she was saying.

    “Peter… I — I’m sorry that I was so hard on him.”
    Thank you, Olivia.
    “Don’t worry about it.”
    Thank you, Peter. Any other show would have them shouting and making accusations at each other.

    All the scenes with Walter and Peter were perfect as usual, the dialogue, the acting and both characters setting the emotional tone. It was a nice touch the way they filmed Walter an Peter, with their faces half in the dark and half illuminated, while they were talking about traveling between worlds.

    “I became convinced that if only I could cross over myself, then I could take from there what I had lost here.”
    This is not, what he tells Olivia in “Peter”. Was he painting himself in a much kinder light in his story to Olivia or was he lying to Peter here? I think that, yes, he was desperate to save Peter, but stealing him wasn’t the only way. The thought of stealing him must have crossed his mind, during all those times he spent watching Peter through the window to the other universe. I’m not letting Elizabeth off the hook here, but I think she just set in stone a decision, that had already been taken.

    As for Peter saying that the Observer attacked him, he is right, the Observer did attack him, he shot Peter with his special gun. Peter just forgot to mention, that he had attacked September first :D

    “What else aren’t you telling me, Walter?”
    Exactly. What else does Walter know about Peter? Why did he experiment on him? And will he be completely sincere with him now, that Peter knows the truth about his origins?

    Cool ending with Olivia meeting William Bell and camera panning out the WTC in the alternate universe, but the scene, that stays with me, is Walter at his son’s tomb. John Noble was perfect as always.


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  5. mlj102 says

    “After escaping from prison, Jones was ringing Massive Dynamic begging for a meeting with Bell (which I still find slightly ridiculous and somewhat beneath Jones)”

    I wouldn’t be surprised if that was one of those instances where Nina was stretching the truth somewhat to fit her purposes. Sure, I believe Jones was trying to get a hold of Bell, but I don’t think it was as desperate or childish as Nina made it sound.

    “Next rewatch episode – 2.01 “A New Day In The Old Town””

    I know you’re running short on time (I’ll still be thoroughly impressed if you actually finish all of Season 2 before Season 3 premieres) but I hope you aren’t going to completely skip over Unearthed. It may be a “stand-alone episode” but it still contains some valuable insight. I think it deserves a rewatch… especially since it hasn’t ever had one. Or are you just planning on doing it in the order it was aired in Season 2?

    As for the question of where Olivia was going in that particular picture/scene, I always interpreted it that she wasn’t going anywhere, but that it was showing how she had just returned from traveling when she went to Reiden Lake. Still, I agree that that scene always held a certain tone to it that didn’t make sense… she seemed very deep in thought and contemplative, and that wasn’t really ever explained. It’s an interesting theory that, at one point, they might have played with the idea of having Olivia reassigned, or ordered to do something else that she didn’t necessarily want to do.

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    • says

      Thanks for the reminder, mlj.

      To be honest, I don’t plan on rewatching “Unearthed”. I wont rule it out, but I can’t commit to it at this stage.

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  6. mrg says

    I was watching this episode (again) and noticed something…in the hospital when Nina wakes up and her mechanical arm and fingers are going crazy, right before she calls for the dunham-ator…..does it look like to anyone else her fingers are tapping awfully rhythmically? like morse code? or am I just reading too many patterns where there are none?

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  7. says

    He is a doll! and I just adore the image of Preston sleeping on Daddy’s chest rellay, the whole lot is gorgeous, you did a great job telling the story of the time you spent with them oh, the snuggles! Congratulations to mom, dad, and Furby!

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