Review: 2.07 Of Human Action


2.07 Review - "Of Human Action"
Welcome to the FB review of the Fringe season 2 episode 7 – “Of Human Action”. In this review I present my honest opinions on both the good and the bad aspects of the episode. I also take a look at the answers and unresolved mysteries, before sharing my thoughts on other aspects which may have been overlooked.

THE GOOD

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  • A semi-serialized episode – happier medium. The wider story arc, though not a constant presence, was supplemented by a progressive story and intriguing plot developments. Where “Earthling” was mostly about the rather ‘gimmicky’ shadow, “Of Human Action” was mostly foreshadowing future stories whilst tying together past elements. Both episodes carried allusions, metaphors and parallels but 2.07 did so in a way that felt more relevant to the overall adventure. The return of the excellent Nina Sharp and Massive Dynamic also helped get us back on track.
  • Pacing. Barring a few blips, the pacing was good. The story elements felt a lot tighter and my attention was held throughout.
  • The set-up/The reveal: I saw it coming a mile off in terms of Tyler being the the kidnapper but I still enjoyed the way it played out. The Tyler clone reveal was really satisfying and added substance to a previous standalone episode “The Same Old Story”. Now if only “No Brainer” can be given similar treatment!
  • Out of the Lab, Into Massive. I’ve often complained about Astrid’s lack of outings so I have to give credit where it’s due. Likewise, it was really interesting to see Walter visit Massive Dynamic for the first time. It’s going to be fantastic when ‘Bell and Bish’ finally meet after all these years. Speaking of which, one of the best moments in the episode came when Nina Sharp spoke to Walter – I liked their interaction as it was heartfelt and left a lot open for speculation, especially as Walter didn’t seem to recognise her.
  • John Noble. He’s been restrained for much of this season due to the focus of the main story shifting to Peter, Olivia and Molebabies, but I felt he was back to something resembling his best in this episode. What I loved most was the diversity in his performance, from the laugh out loud sound-check  - “as you listen you may feel a sense of deep sense of tranquility as if you had returned to your mothers womb..”, to his heartbreaking tale of how William Bell couldn’t wait for him. Walter’s grief at losing Peter ‘again’ was also another memorable moment.
  • Blair Brown. I adore Nina Sharp – she’s just a fantastic character. I thought Blair Brown did a marvellous job with her in this episode. Her performance was more contained than usual, but this allowed room for interpretation – particularly regarding her relationship with Walter. Good to see her back. Please use her more often.
  • The final scene. I love when they throw in something kookie and unexpected like a grainy VHS tape or a 1970′s computer that communicates with parallel worlds. It was right out of the “LOST” Season 2 props department and it was one of the most intriguing endings on Fringe to date – and that’s saying something.

THE BAD

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  • Olivia visits Massive Dynamic for the first time since her alter-reality meeting with William Bell initially approaching Nina about alter-reality meeting with William Bell and yet she mentions nothing of that event, nor does she show any hint of..anything, regarding her failed mission to find the shapeshifters leader. It’s just unnatural and unrealistic for to not follow up on something as important as that. Like I’ve said before, I can buy into parallel universes, but the lack of continuity displayed by some of our characters is just too unbelievable. I don’t necessarily expect an entire scene on this, but they could have Olivia ask Nina whether she’s had any luck contacting Bell, or something. Seriously, Massive Dynamic transported Olivia to another universe, she’d be full of questions. Also, if they want us to believe that the “war” is a serious deal then they can’t completely drop it for 3 episodes. (I know that the final scene might tie into Bell’s war strategy, but that’s not enough).
  • Tyler. I thought the actor did a decent enough job, but the character could have done with more padding, which the episode didn’t afford.
  • Broyles getting shot seemed a bit thrown in there. It was nice to see him out in the field (he’s a soldier, after all) and to have Olivia and Peter show concern for him, but did we ever believe that Broyles was in any serious danger? It’s just a waste of someone getting shot and yet more false tension. Also, why did Broyles taser Tyler instead of shooting him with a tranquilizer dart or something that would sedate him and relinquish his ability? I guess it’s just a storytelling contrivance.
  • One of things that bugs me about the show is the way every case gets resolved by the 42nd minute. We see Peter and Walter give some half-baked explanation about how Tyler’s mind control powers ‘wore off’, and then it’s case closed and onto the next Fringe file! I don’t think a detailed analysis of Tyler’s condition is needed, but the off-screen resolutions just seem so convenient. I think my main problem is how a day in Fringe literally equals one episode, whereas in reality some of these cases would span multiple days and would carry over. More realism please!

ANSWERS

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  • We know from episode 1.02 “The Same Old Story” that Massive Dynamic successfully developed clones (Christopher Penrose) – this episode was a continuation of that with the Penrose-Carson Experiments. Either Dr. Carson was working with Claus Penrose (we know that he’s still ‘out there’), or he continued his work once Clause escaped Peter’s ‘watchful’ eye.
  • The season 1 finale told us that Nina communicates with William Bell electronically. Now we at least know one of the devices that she uses – a retro computer. However, Nina was unsure whether William was still receiving her messages – giving us an explanation as to why Bell passed on the message about the symbol on the shapeshifters leader through Olivia (“Momentum”).
  • We know that there are at least 8 Tyler clones (probably many more) – each one was given a guardian (presumably a Massive Dynamic employee) – Dr. James Carson was the ‘father’ of Tyler #3. Nina suspended the Tyler experiments after this event, but considered the project a success. It’s likely that the cloning project is intended for the war with over there.

UNRESOLVED MYSTERIES

  • How did Tyler’s mind control work? Did he alternate between his targets or could he control multiple people at the same time?
  • What role did Nina play in Walter’s past, and why did she show so much empathy towards him?
  • Why is Bell seemingly unable to send electronic messages back to Nina? How do you send messages to a parallel reality anyway – is a special type of energy needed (as per the electricity theme which runs through the show)? Does Bell have the same model at his end?
  • Is the computer even from our reality? We already have a long trail of retro-looking technology which isn’t from over here – the Selectric-251 typewriter, the Observer’s eye-glasses, to name a few.

FRINGE THOUGHTS

You turn your back for one minute..

  • Walter said he was bored at the beginning of the episode – interesting, perhaps hinting at more epic investigations to come to keep him interested. He also seemed all too familiar with the idea of mind control suggesting that it was something he and Bell had worked on. This could also tie into the mantra that Walter taught young Peter (“Dream Logic”) to make him forget his abduction/real world.
  • I like the idea that Massive Dynamic was always the name that Walter and Bell planned to call their company. A company shaped in Bell’s image, but perhaps forged in Walter’s ideals? The way I see it, MD is just as much Walter’s as it is Bell’s. It was also interesting to see the first hint of resentment from Walter towards his former colleague.
  • Although we’ve had several instances where Fringe Division and Massive Dynamic have worked together (More Than One, Momentum, Human Action), it’s clear that Nina is still keeping things from our team – whether or not this is a bad thing remains to be seen.
  • I got a weird romantic, yet nurturing vibe between Nina and Walter upon their meeting. I can’t quite work out which one held the most meaning. I’m also wondering how Nina knowing Peter as a child (“The Cure”) fits in to this? Has Walter forgotten Nina, or is this more evidence that Nina is actually from over there, just like Peter?
  • Tyler wanted to shoot Broyles in the head, Peter was able to “pull it off center a bit”. This seems to be another allusion to Peter’s ability. One question that I’ve had for a while is whether Peter’s ability is simply down to him being from another reality (i.e. his ability only works “over here”), or due to something Walter/Alter-Walter or perhaps Bellie did to him? I’m thinking that the latter would make more sense and add further complexity to his back-story (it’s been implied that Walter ran experiments on Peter after he abducted him).
  • Broyles called Peter “one of the good guys”. Aww, is this a love-in or what? :P
  • Is Peter’s mother dead? The episode certainly seemed to suggest as much. If we’re to use the Tyler/Rene story as an allusion it might suggest that Peter thinks she is dead, and that Walter is hiding more than one big secret from Peter. Watch this space.
  • Bell introduced Walter to Peter’s mother. Interesting. Was Bell ever romantically involved with her (he knows her ‘code’)? Is Peter’s mother German or was she just visiting Berlin? Does this in any way tie into Flight 627 and David Jones’ incarceration in the Wissenschaft?
  • I enjoyed Walter’s ‘Massive Dynamic can read our minds’ paranoia. The tin foil hat scene was a distraction, but a nice one. I also have question the point of having Astrid concur by saying that MD gives her the creeps. Is this the writers way of putting the death any ‘Astrid’s a mole’ theories, or is it building towards something else?
  • How many times is poor Peter going to be kidnapped? Walter, John Mosley and now Tyler! Seriously Liv, I think he needs a gun after all.
  • Peter’s seemingly throw-away line about “spies hiding out in plain sight (gathering information)” is probably not such a throw away line, especially with shapeshifters, couriers, Observers and Cortexiphan kids in the mix.
  • I’ve often wondered how Walter gets away with butchering the bodies of victims brought to his lab – surely the families of these people wouldn’t appreciate such ‘thorough investigation’?
  • If earlier Walter was bored, he soon found the rush of being on the front-line “exciting”. So much so that he wondered whether the FBI would give him a gun. I loved the look on Peter’s face – he was like: “If I don’t have a gun yet, you sure as hell aint getting one!”. We’ve previously remarked on Peter’s eagerness to have a gun this season, so it was nice to see this taken to a new level with Walter expressing his gun-toting desire. (oh, and Peter got his gun, yay for him).
  • Peter asked an interesting question – “how far away do you have to be to control people?”. If MD are planning to use mind control clones in the coming war, that must be a real consideration as we’ve been told that very few ‘humans’ are able to cross the border.
  • I take it Walter made Peter crepes after he abducted him? Perhaps it was original Peter’s favorite food – or was that whale-shaped pancakes? It’s been a while since I’ve seen the season 1 finale.
  • Peter’s mother is definitely a sensitive subject – always has been. Walter telling Peter that she was “A strong woman” not only brings to light the possibility that she is dead (or brain damaged – or something of that nature), but it’s the first kind thing that we’ve heard him say about her. It was just a nice moment, and yet more growth for Walter.

FINAL THOUGHT

I'll call you Peter 3

For me, this episode boils down to Walter experiencing the ‘shoe being on the other foot’ – as they say. This season we’ve been told that what you put in, gets paid back in full (“Physics is a bitch”), so it’s only right that we add another saying: “What goes around, comes around”.

“he’s gone, I can’t find him anywhere”.

“how do I do this without Peter?”

Those are just a couple of the despairing moments when Walter found out what it must have been like for alter-Walter to have his son taken from him. Walter’s anger towards Dr. Carson for ‘being an improper parent’ was short sighted and hypocritical – and yet my sympathy was still with Walter throughout his ordeal. Perhaps it’s because I’m invested in Walter’s story, or because everyone deserves a second chance, or because what he did was understandable on some human level? Abduction is terrible, but is it quite so bad when you’re stealing from yourself? I guess that must have been Walter’s flawed logic when he made the choice to take Peter.

But to despise Walter is to ignore the flip side of his character. The loving father who is desperately trying to make up for lost time, and the broken man who suffers daily for his past transgressions. As has already been said, the pursuit of science carries risk and sacrifice. Perhaps Walter has paid his debt?

As for the episode title – “Of Human Action”, it’s another interesting one. It speaks to me on the level of taking responsibility for our decisions. In a world of computers and robots it’s often difficult to remember that our brain is also a machine – perhaps the first and most complex ever made. So pretty much everything revolves around human action. If we substitute the word “desire” for “action” it begins to make more sense as to how this relates not only to the contained ‘mind control’ case, but to the larger story, Walter’s decision to abduct Peter and the consequences thereof. As far as we know it was Walter’s choice (to take Peter) and he should be blamed for that. But the opposite of action is inaction, and I have to wonder whether taking Peter, on some level, was necessary? If not for some grand all-encompassing reason, then for Walter’s own survival – which could be just as important for over here than we currently realise.

Best Moment: Nina MSNing William Bell / Tyler clone factory.

Best Performer: John Noble

Episode Rating: 8.1/10

Comments

  1. caelum says

    “Olivia visits Massive Dynamic for the first time since her alter-reality meeting with William Bell and yet she mentions nothing of that event, nor does she show any hint of..anything, regarding her failed mission to find the shapeshifters leader. It’s just unnatural and unrealistic for to not follow up on something as important as that. Like I’ve said before, I can buy into parallel universes, but the lack of continuity displayed by some of our characters is just too unbelievable. I don’t necessarily expect an entire scene on this, but they could have Olivia ask Nina whether she’s had any luck contacting Bell, or something. Seriously, Massive Dynamic transported Olivia to another universe, she’d be full of questions. Also, if they want us to believe that the “war” is a serious deal then they can’t completely drop it for 3 episodes. (I know that the final scene might tie into Bell’s war strategy, but that’s not enough).”

    Didn’t she visit Nina Sharp in that one episode when she remembered the symbol bell showed her? I assume this was at Massive Dynamic building if my memory serves me correctly.

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  2. says

    You’re quite right – I should have said, “Olivia visits Massive Dynamic for the first time since initially approaching Nina about her meeting with Bell” (correction added to post). My bad – the whole flashback thing is difficult to keep up with when we get so many standalones!

    So to the writers credit this isn’t the first time Nina and Olivia have come face to face since her meeting with William, but as so much was left unresolved (like the meaning of the symbol, the shapeshifters agenda, etc), I’d think that they would have more pressing matters to talk about than a stand-alone fringe file. I would have been happy with a knowing look between the two of them. Just something to let me know that – yes - we still have the firstwave on our minds. Then they could crack on with the mind control case. :D

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    • says

      Oh Roco!
      Me and you have had are disagreements over the years (mainly during s4)
      but I have to give credit where credit’s due and perhaps even offer an apology for some of my previous comments.
      I have started re-reading all of your reviews and I have to say that I am truly impressed at how much effort (and respect for Fringe) you put in. Every episode review is so wonderfully detailed, so thorough and just a pleasure to read. I wish that the Fringe writers took the time to read them! Yes, the show is over and it is now clear that the writers/producers never really bothered to read constructive fan blogs, such as this one, which truly is a great shame because some (if not most) of your ideas and episode analogies have far better expectations and overall story material then the whole team behind the show put together.
      Even just your reviews of the stand-alone (procedural) episodes such as “Of Human Action” have better ideas, of how the stories could’ve tied-in to the overall mythology of the show, then what the writers ever did. Reading your reviews now, it’s like reading the notes of the person who wrote The Book that the show is based on! You give the show so much respect with your attention to detail and your effort to make each episode ‘count’ is just so impressive! You really observed ( ;-) ) this show inside and out from the get go and you would’ve made an amazing story consultant for Fringe.
      I am finding myself not just agreeing with the points you make but also being blown away by ideas that are way better then what we actually got from the people behind the show. It really makes me sad that the show blew a lot of its potential on stories that ended up having little to no meaning in the grand scheme of things. However, it is also really comforting to know that there are fans like you (and a lot of FB members) out there who had this level of respect for the show and weren’t afraid to voice that they expect better. Fans who had incredible ideas, questions and theories that could’ve made Fringe a much better show.
      Let me make it clear that I don’t mean to disrespect Fringe and the team behind it with this comment. Fringe is, and most likely always will be, one of my top 3 favourite television shows of all time. I think it’s a brilliant piece of television history. Fringe will be remembered for its strengths not its weaknesses. However, I just wish that some of the ideas and storylines got the respect that they (an we the fans) deserved and that they were given the opportunity of further exploration and better realisation. I don’t know if the network is to blame for some of Fringe’s failures or if it’s the team of writers, producers and showrunners. It’s probably a combination of both.

      Anyway, I just wanted to really thank you for sharing your thoughts and treating the show with the respect that you did. It really is quite something coming back and reading all your work. It adds an extra layer to my Fringe experience and even though it’s quite bittersweet (a lot of missed potential) it’s still very rewarding. I keep catching myself going: “Oh man! They so should’ve done that!” and “Wow. Sometimes Roco gets this show better then Wyman.” :-) Thank you Roco.
      P.S. Apologies for my snarky remarks during S4. It was my way of “coping” with my disappointment in the story. My way of desperately trying to justify the shows failures, even when they didn’t deserve it. I’ve come to realise a lot about what it means to be a true fan. You don’t need to lie to yourself in order to be considered “a fan”. I think that fans sometimes just find it too hard to admit that our fave show is doing the wrong thing. I know that I certainly did. Now that I’ve had some time to reflect, I find it a lot easier to point out the mistakes, without putting myself through a guilt trip. Back then I wasn’t able to do that and I apologise for taking my frustration out on you. I’d also like to apologise to the other Fringe Bloggers members who were brave enough to speak their minds and give constructive criticism while I would whine back with my over-deffensive approach and bad attitude. I’m sorry guys! :-)

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      • says

        Thanks for the kind words, observette_march. No apology necessary. We all had valuable perspectives/criticisms, and the show certainly challenged us! :)

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  3. Jodie says

    Here’s my two favorite theories.

    1) How many times is poor Peter going to be kidnapped? Walter, John Mosley and now Tyler!

    Seriously, we already know that Peter is from over there. The secret just needs to come out, but this isn’t the only theme the writers keep repeating. “The Same Old Story,” “Unleashed,” “Night of Desirable Consequences,” and now “Of Human Actions” are all about the same story: a lab created creature/person who gets loose and runs amok. I think that this is Peter’s real origins. Yes, he was kidnapped from the other side, but he was genetically engineered by Walter and William Bell with Nina Sharp being his birth mother. Each time we’re given this story, it gets more explicit. Peter even tells Olivia about his origins in the pilot episode: he calls his father “Dr. Frankenstein” which would make him Frankenstein’s monster. Remember, the monster is abandoned by his “father,” escapes the lab, and then runs amok. Walter failed at cloning soldiers, so William and Walter try to manipulate a fetus’ DNA (Grow a mutant just like Dr. Hughes did.). This wasn’t a complete success since Peter1 dies and I think this might have lead to Nina’s cancer, so then they next try creating soldiers by using cortexiphan. They wanted to duplicate Peter’s abilities, but make it safer and easier.

    2) Tyler wanted to shoot Broyles in the head, Peter was able to “pull it off center a bit”. This seems to be another allusion to Peter’s ability. One question that I’ve had for a while is whether Peter’s ability is simply down to him being from another reality (i.e. his ability only works “over here”), or due to something Walter/Alter-Walter or perhaps Bellie did to him? I’m thinking that the latter would make more sense and add further complexity to his back-story (it’s been implied that Walter ran experiments on Peter after he abducted him).

    Peter is psychic. He also tells Olivia this in the pilot episode: he tells her that “He reads people… It’s kind of his thing.” He would probably say that it’s just body language because he is unaware of his abilities full power. This is how he knew where the cylinder was buried in “Arrival,” how he can read Walter, and calm Olivia in “Bad Dreams.” He can also retrieve information from Walter when Walter can’t remember something. This happened in “Safe”: Peter takes out his coin and does his trick which spurs Walter to remember what he hid in the safe deposit boxes. There was the whale pancakes in “There’s More Than One of Everything”: Walter finally remembers what he needs to find and do only after Peter puts him in the right frame of mind. Walter even thanks Peter for the help! I think that Peter’s weird connections are a part of this also: Peter has gone through his life collecting experts for future use in order to help the Fringe team. Walter also hints at Peter’s ultimate purpose in the “Equation” lab notes. He tells us that Peter is the “key.” This plays into William announcing that Olivia is the gatekeeper. Even the season 2 promotional photos show Peter’s shadow on the door: one shows Peter opening the door and I think another shows him holding Walter’s universe patch “gun”. I also think that it is important that Peter insists on taking that “gun” from Walter in the season 1 finale and closing the door because it is foreshadowing his role in the big war to come. The other side doesn’t have Peter any more so they had to create a shapeshifter/soldier to do what Peter can do.

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    • says

      I’m not convinced that Peter is “psychic” per se, but it’s certainly possible and could tie into his relationship with the Observer(s).

      I’m thinking his ability has more to do with psychokinesis, but they could go with something completely different, or something less flamboyant. Eitherway, I agree that he’s “special” and that he was probably ‘made’ that way by Walter/Alter-Walter and/or Bell.

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      • says

        Oh Roco!
        Me and you have had are disagreements over the years (mainly during s4)
        but I have to give credit where credit’s due and perhaps even offer an apology for some of my previous comments.
        I have started re-reading all of your reviews and I have to say that I am truly impressed at how much effort (and respect for Fringe) you put in. Every episode review is so wonderfully detailed, so thorough and just a pleasure to read. I wish that the Fringe writers took the time to read them! Yes, the show is over and it is now clear that the writers/producers never really bothered to read constructive fan blogs, such as this one, which truly is a great shame because some (if not most) of your ideas and episode analogies have far better expectations and overall story material then the whole team behind the show put together.
        Even just your reviews of the stand-alone (procedural) episodes such as “Of Human Action” have better ideas, of how the stories could’ve tied-in to the overall mythology of the show, then what the writers ever did. Reading your reviews now, it’s like reading the notes of the person who wrote The Book that the show is based on! You give the show so much respect with your attention to detail and your effort to make each episode ‘count’ is just so impressive! You really observed ( ;-) ) this show inside and out from the get go and you would’ve made an amazing story consultant for Fringe.
        I am finding myself not just agreeing with the points you make but also being blown away by ideas that are way better then what we actually got from the people behind the show. It really makes me sad that the show blew a lot of its potential on stories that ended up having little to no meaning in the grand scheme of things. However, it is also really comforting to know that there are fans like you (and a lot of FB members) out there who had this level of respect for the show and weren’t afraid to voice that they expect better. Fans who had incredible ideas, questions and theories that could’ve made Fringe a much better show.
        Let me make it clear that I don’t mean to disrespect Fringe and the team behind it with this comment. Fringe is, and most likely always will be, one of my top 3 favourite television shows of all time. I think it’s a brilliant piece of television history. Fringe will be remembered for its strengths not its weaknesses. However, I just wish that some of the ideas and storylines got the respect that they (an we the fans) deserved and that they were given the opportunity of further exploration and better realisation. I don’t know if the network is to blame for some of Fringe’s failures or if it’s the team of writers, producers and showrunners. It’s probably a combination of both.

        Anyway, I just wanted to really thank you for sharing your thoughts and treating the show with the respect that you did. It really is quite something coming back and reading all your work. It adds an extra layer to my Fringe experience and even though it’s quite bittersweet (a lot of missed potential) it’s still very rewarding. I keep catching myself going: “Oh man! They so should’ve done that!” and “Wow. Sometimes Roco gets this show better then Wyman.” :-) Thank you Roco.
        P.S. Apologies for my snarky remarks during S4. It was my way of “coping” with my disappointment in the story. My way of desperately trying to justify the shows failures, even when they didn’t deserve it. I’ve come to realise a lot about what it means to be a true fan. You don’t need to lie to yourself in order to be considered “a fan”. I think that fans sometimes just find it too hard to admit that our fave show is doing the wrong thing. I know that I certainly did. Now that I’ve had some time to reflect, I find it a lot easier to point out the mistakes, without putting myself through a guilt trip. Back then I wasn’t able to do that and I apologise for taking my frustration out on you. I’d also like to apologise to the other Fringe Bloggers members who were brave enough to speak their minds and give constructive criticism while I would whine back with my over-deffensive approach and bad attitude. I’m sorry guys! :-)

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  4. says

    This episode was a vast improvement over last week’s. Pardon my language here, but the way Walter was pining over losing Peter, and clutching the teddy bear after Peter runs to get Tyler… those scenes were absolutely adorable. I don’t know if that’s what they were going for, but I was getting frustrated about the lack of Season 1 Walter and his character development, and I feel like they’ve brought that back.

    Really liked this episode, and I hope they do more in this vein.

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  5. YeeYang1 says

    @One of things that bugs me about the show is the way every case gets resolved by the 42nd minute

    All shows do that, though. You don’t want something to drag on forever especially if its not going to important in the future.

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    • says

      All shows do that, though. You don’t want something to drag on forever especially if its not going to important in the future.

      Not all shows. Serialized shows don’t resolve the story in every episode – a good current example would be ABC’s “FlashForward”.

      I’m not saying I want the cases to “drag on forever” – I’m saying that the open/shut case-a-day format is causing continuity and story-telling problems for a show that has too much going on for cases not to overlap. Even in the world of the show, one case = one day. That’s just not realistic. Do it once or twice, may be even 10 times. But do it 20+ times in just over a season and it begins to show.

      And if something’s not important for the future, why is it in the show? If it’s not important to the story then it’s technically a waste of valuable time. Give me the stuf that matters.

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      • YeeYang1 says

        Okay, what about the Mr Jones/Mitchell Loeb storyline? I recall that case wasn’t closed either. In the episode Safe, Mr jones escaped and it wasn’t until we learn in Ability that he escaped to boston and then again escaped.
        What about that?

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  6. YeeYang1 says

    @Olivia visits Massive Dynamic for the first time since her alter-reality meeting with William Bell initially approaching Nina about alter-reality meeting with William Bell and yet she mentions nothing of that event

    Maybe its because she has other stuff to worry about like Peter being abducted and frankly, its not as though the shapeshifters have shown their faces. Again, why not wait until the show is over to start complaining about questions that will be answered soon?

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    • says

      Peter was abducted after they went to Massive Dynamic, so there would be no need or Olivia to worry about that.

      But anyway, my point is that Olivia has just been transported to another reality – that’s, like a big deal. I’d be full of questions to the people responsible (by default, that’s Nina). So in a show that’s supposed to be character driven, I’d appreciate it if there could be at least some reference to that whole thing (meeting Bell, shapeshifters, etc). If this was the 10th time that they had met since the event, then fine, but as far as we know it’s Olivia’s first contact with Nina since 2.04.

      As for the shapeshifters not showing their faces, well I thought this season was going to be one of ‘proactivity’ and going after the action? Because if Team Fringe are looking for action, there’s no bigger or better place to start than looking for the shapeshifters and whatever clues they may leave behind! If Peter can pull the Molebaby case out from his backpocket, I think he can find some connection on the shapeshifters. That he hasn’t is because the writers are holding out on us (probably so as to not confuse the casual viewers), not because it wouldn’t make logical sense for Fringe Division to reference/chase/follow the broader story-arcs more often.

      Again, why not wait until the show is over to start complaining about questions that will be answered soon?

      1. So I should wait until season 5 or cancelation before talking about a show I enjoy? :)

      2. I’m not worried about them answering questions – I’m fine (for the most part) waiting for the big reveals, I just want to feel as though the show is getting somewhere and improving. I’m not satisfied seeing Fringe dragging its knuckles because I believe it is far better than that.

      3. The whole point of this blog is to discuss the show – both the good AND the bad. By “bad”, we mean ‘could do better’ or ‘must improve’. If you see it as “complaining” then that’s your choice, but you might notice that our “bad” section is smaller than our “good” section, this week.

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    • Pedro says

      Again, why not wait until the show is over to start complaining about questions that will be answered soon?

      You have nothing to base your claim on that these will be answered soon. If you don’t like the “complaining” then why do you bother to come to a blog. If you only want to see “praise” then go out to fox.com instead.

      Despite what you think, the people that “complain” still care about where the show goes, some of us that “complain” do so because we don’t want the show to get canceled by going down the “stand-alones rule path”.

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  7. YeeYang1 says

    No offense but if there was one actor who was restrained , it would be Joshua Jackson not John Noble. John was loved from the very beginning while Joshua was struggling with no proper storyline and mostly jokes. Josh was the only one of the leads who never had the chance to prove himself to be a good actor.

    Last season was all about Walter and Olivia. Now its Peter’s turn.

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    • YeeYang1 says

      Let me also say John got so much emmy buzz while Josh didn’t get none so really, how is John restrained?

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      • says

        In response to your other comment. I couldn’t care less about “emmy buzz” or any of the hype that goes on – I’m talking about what I see on the screen with my own two eyes. :-P

        This isn’t a Jackson v Noble thing, it’s simply acknowledging the remarkable work that Noble did in this episode, edging back to the forefront after being less front and center in the previous 6 episodes of this season.

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    • says

      Well, that’s a matter of opinion. I think Joshua Jackson has had much more to do this season (although I wouldn’t quite call it the ‘proactive Peter’ that was promised to us) and his character is developing.

      I mentioned John Noble because his level of involvement in an episode is especially noticeable to me, and this episode felt like the first time in a long time that we got ourselves a large dose of ‘Walter’.

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  8. Betynha says

    Great review!

    I must say I was very impressed with Walter’s state of loss. Never thought he would be so lost and vulnerable with his son.

    The end of this episode blew my mind away. I was just shocked to listen to Nina’s message, and the images following the action. I don’t know, but I guess we saw 9 clones. 4 in each side and Tyler #3 arriving in that room (and it’s strange to treat someone with a number).

    Anyway, this episode was great. Hope they can keep the path and give more action to us from now on.

    Cheers! o/

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  9. says

    Just a couple comments:

    1. I think this question: how far away do you have to be to control people? had been indirectly answered by the writers. Remember the gadget used by Walter in disabling Tyler? It’s 20 feet.

    2. Peter and the crepes. I think it was more like a subtle way of saying that Alter-Peter is somehow “creep”-out with what had happened.

    3. This just occurred to me. The shapeshifters are after Olivia. This is because Olivia has information. That information came from William Bell. We also know whoever in the other side should have a capability of forming a team of something like shapeshifters. Then… we have Nimoy saying “I don’t know if I am going to do a 4th”. Could it be that the other side killed William Bell? Could it be that the reason why he wasn’t able to reply back to Nina?

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  10. Darkknight says

    “We’re the good guys” is a common phrase on Lost (which is weird because Lance Reddick was in Lost).

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  11. Frobozz says

    Good episode. Feels like we’re “back on track” here.

    First, on your comments about what alter-Walter must have felt…we know nothing about alter-Walter. Perhaps alter-Walter was the horrible father that Peter remembers? What we’ve seen of our Walter is, frankly, a loving father who was horribly affected by the death of his son…a father who violated the laws of physics to create a teleporter to try to pull someone out of time to save him. Alter-Walter, I suspect, is a right bastard who treated Peter terribly.

    The Nina/Walter interaction puzzled me. Perhaps I expected more there…Walter DIDN’T react with a “Nina..it’s been ages” reaction. He acted like she was a stranger. Peter got more of a reaction from Nina than Walter did in Season 1. Nina didn’t say anything to Walter about having known him.

    The clone twist at the end was nice…the kid bugged the hell out of me. I’m glad it didn’t just end up as a “jaded spoiled teenager uses daddy’s experiments to get powers” story.

    Definitely a good episode. Can’t wait for next week.

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    • STaylor says

      I have to say that I couldn’t agree with you more about alter-Walter. We need to see it play itself out, but I would not be shocked if it turns out that alter-Walter is someone who used his genius for eeeee-viiil.

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  12. merlin says

    so olivia doesn’t mention alterverse massive dynamic bell said they were after him yes?

    bell introduced me to your mother

    is nina or other nina, peters mother?

    when i saw the clones i instantly said to my self, manchurian candidate. the new one.

    and

    and is asimov’s robot fasination helpful when researching the biomechanical suits the mercurial spies/scouts are using?

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  13. gab says

    At the end when Walter is making the crepes and telling Peter about how he love it when he was a child, Peter is like trying to remember it. I think that is interesting.

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  14. LizW65 says

    <>

    Has anyone watched the Season One DVD extras yet? The commentary for eipsode 1:17 seems to suggest that Peter has some sort of healing touch–though it’s equally possible I’m reading altogether too much into it.

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  15. alerys says

    when i heard that whenever someone from the other side appeared they were always dressed in black and that our side would wear white, that got me thinking. and know that i saw olivia in the lab with a revolver, at the end when peter and olivia are talking i notice peter is wearing a black jacket… and its not the first time.walter wears his lab coat most of the time , and astrid always wears diffrent colors, and i also notice olivia wears white and black. fringe will always be a mystery.

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  16. Peanut says

    In light of what we know from the Over There episodes, maybe Bell stopped communicating with Nina because he knew that his communications were being monitored Over There?

    The way that Nina places her right (the robotic) hand on Walter’s chest & calms him down is reminiscent of how Peter’s touch has calmed down Olivia on several occasions. It is odd that Walter does not seem to remember Nina (even with parts of his brain removed, I would think that Walter would find Nina memorable!). Certainly, touching him in that relatively intimate manner (not a gesture that you would usually make to someone the first time that you had met them) implies that Nina is very well acquainted with Walter. She addresses him as Walter, rather than Dr. Bishop; we now know that the two have known each other for many years (“6955 kHz,” 3.06).

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    • Peanut says

      I brought up the touch thing because it indicates a connection between Nina & Peter–as has been speculated, maybe she is his biological mother &, if not, she definitely has a yet-to-be revealed link to Wonder Boy.

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