After over 90 episodes of Fringe, this show can still make me go, “Wow this is pretty weird.” And I’m not talking about the Peter putting Observer tech into his neck “I’m not sure this is a good idea” kind of weird. No. “Through the Looking Glass and What Walter Found There” is that lovely kind of weird that Fringe does so well.
The concept that this episode revolves around is the idea of a pocket universe, one hat lies sort of in between universes. Walter has used this very unique and hard to find place to hide away a part of his plan. What makes this place so cool is that the normal rules of space and time don’t apply here. Things aren’t always as they seem and it makes for a kind of trippy environment that reminds me a bit of an M.C. Escher work. Of course when they realize Walter is missing, Peter and Olivia end up in this neat little world as well.
And a lot of time is spent just exploring this place. We find a few things along the way. Walter finds Cecil, a man who has been trapped here. His importance lies mostly in a realization Walter makes late in the episode. We see some glyphs on the doosr. But most importantly, we find out what Walter hid away in here, the child from Season 1’s “Inner Child”. Color me surprised that they brought him back into this show. I was just remarking a week or so ago to someone that I figured they had dropped that plot point in regards to the Observers in favor of more recent developments. I’m still not exactly sure how they will tie this into everything, but man am I excited to find out. Now they didn’t actually find him, so that will have to wait a week I suppose.
After making the discovery of what was hidden here and that they will probably have to use a radio they found to track down the kid and maybe Donald, the Observers get wind of them being in this area. So they come in and chase the Fringe team out and this is where we get our first real glimpse at the fallout from last week’s ending. Peter can see the portal between these universes like the Observers. In a fight with an Observer outside, he can predict his punches. And in his most Observe-y and badass moment of all, Peter teleports behind one of the baldies and snaps his neck. It was pretty awesome to be honest. We also get a look at Observer vision through his eyes at the end which is a bit odd, but I didn’t hate it.
So I have to say, so far so good on the Peter putting Observer tech in him plotline that made me so nervous a week ago. I mean this still might be a totally terrible idea. But whereas last week I felt like it was a possible writing misstep. Now I am just thinking it is more of a misstep by Peter’s character which it is totally meant to be. Sure he got to snap some necks and get them out of trouble this week, but as the recipient of the neck snap inferred, he will regret this decision. Definitely feel a little better about all of this, but still waiting to see how it plays out from here.
A couple more things:
- The episode was capped off with a great conversation between Walter and Peter. Walter is worried that he is becoming the man he didn’t ever want to be again and Peter is assuring him he won’t let that happen… while obviously going through some changes himself. It was really fantastic. And he called Walter Dad… which is great!
- The funniest moment was probably when Walter stops off for some Danish on the video tape.
- First they show the window under Walter’s lab. Then there are portals opening in the last episode. And this time Walter just slips through to somewhere at the beginning before we know where. Surely these writers want us going, “Oh shit… Over There?!?”
- Didn’t watch the preview, but the next episode is called “Five-Twenty-Ten” which was totally the combination of the lock at Jacksonville when they went back there in the episode “Jacksonville”. Coincidence? I like to think not! It was also the date the Season 2 finale aired, but I like the Jacksonville connection better.
All in all, a strong episode of Fringe. Bringing back the kid from “Inner Child” was a surprise for me and I’m really curious how he will factor into all of this Observer stuff. The pocket universe made for a fun new environment for an episode. As always there were nice character moments throughout. And hey it even made me come around on this whole Peter/Observer Tech thing. Still not totally sold, but I feel a bit better which is a plus.