Welcome to the rewatch for episode 14 of Fringe season 2 – “Jacksonville”. Join us as we dose ourselves with Cortexiphan in preparation for the final leg of this impossible rewatch. Will we make it in time? If time stops still.
We have renamed this episode: Cometh The Dunhamnator.
Newly Observed Perspectives
- “The Universe seeks balance”. While I agree with Walter, I do wonder why the universe didn’t seek balance when he abducted Peter? Did the Observers have a word with Mrs. Universe and persuade her to let this one slide? Or perhaps Walter’s original son’s grave is empty, his body transported to the other side? I guess the most acceptable answer is that Walter’s doorway was stable enough to override the Universe and her whims.
- I do love this episode, and not just for all of the reasons that we often speak about. But the idea of the episode (and the paths that have led here) I find quite uplifting. For me it’s about a person coming into their own, embracing their power, not out of desire or conceit, but out of necessity. It’s the heroic nature of Olivia that I really admire, and this episode – the journey back into her Wonderland and the activation of her ability, is really quite something. There are of course a few off points but there are times when the story and its power overrides any dodgy CGI or contrived plot elements. This is one such episode.
- “We gave you the ability”. Erm, yes and no. She had the ability, Walter, you just limited the limitation of that ability. But this ability in itself is still a wonder..
- Whenever we get one of these SUPA POWA episodes I’m always intrigued by the nature of the Cortexiphan subjects, and the idea that everyone had special abilities in the moments before the limitation kicked in. There is so much to speculate with this, such as: what does this epic battle between nature and nurture symbolize? Does everyone have unique abilities? Are these abilities given to humans for a grand reason, even though most of them will never even know that they have it? Who or what implemented the limitation, and why? I find these questions interesting and I hope the show finds a way to explore them.
- Do people in the alternate universe have such abilities? If so, are their abilities different in nature? How does PETER POWA factor in? Is Boy Wonder the source of the limitation of the limitation?
- Love this:
“I can’t see it anymore”
“Because I believe that you stopped wanting to. When you did there were consequences, but I was able to elicit the ability once, I believe I may be able to do it again.”
- I like the idea that people can fail to see things because they stop wanting to. How often do we see people ignore the truths because pretending they are not there makes things easier, or brings a sense of peace? Walter himself was experiencing something similar at this point with the Peter secret. Although we are yet to fully explore the full scope of Olivia’s ability, I find her perception to be one of the most realistic yet powerful ‘powers’ in recent science-fiction. What I like about perception when it comes to Olivia is that a lot of it is about emotion and choice.
- Then there’s these “consequences” that Walter mentioned. Was he referring to the consequences of Olivia not wanting to see the other side, or consequences of her seeing the other side? Hmm.
- In this episode we see Olivia’s eyes open to the truths of her past, but in the background, much more subtle, is the fact that Walter also experiences something similar. I think we touched on this at the time, but there’s one moment which encapsulates this brilliantly. It’s when Walter not only puts on his old spectacles, but he looks at his reflection in the tray. This is a small scene that reflects Walter’s conflicted emotions very well, as his face flickers from happiness and pride to something resembling regret and disappointment.
- Broyles (and his knowing eyes) asks Olivia what finally activated her ability. Olivia delivers a brilliant answer, one that taps into the destiny element of her journey: “I think it was just time“. While I think she may be talking about a number of things here, is this a small glimmer of acceptance by our warrior queen? Is she ready to reclaim her ability? Natural and unnatural, time waits for no man but it stops dead for the Dunhamnator.
Best retrospective performer: Anna Torv.
Best retrospective moment: Jacksonville Day Center Scenes.
Retrospective episode rating: 9/10
Next rewatch episode – 2.15 “Peter” – TBA.