Ever since David Robert Jones returned, we have been wondering what the plan is. He is working with or for Nina Sharp. Since he gets instructions from her, I suspect she is not a shapeshifter. Although Nina and Jones are not in this episode, a small town in Vermont is the victim of their plans.
This is a recap, so there are spoilers.
Blue light floods the scene of a couple making love. Olivia and Peter are together, and they tell each other that they love each other. The sound of a phone ringing is heard, and I am surprised to see Olivia wake up from the dream. Is she developing feelings for Peter or is something else going on?
The call was from Peter. He and Walter have been working on the machine, and they need her help. She goes to Walter’s lab, and they tell her they have a prototype of a device that could operate the machine. They need her to talk to Broyles to get permission to use the machine.
A guy drives a truck. His truck has electrical problems and stalls. He gets out. There is a line of vehicles. Everyone is out of their vehicles. The flash of light gets their attention. A plane flies overhead and crashes in the distance.
The Fringe team is at the section of the highway with the stalled cars. Astrid tries to get Walter on her earpiece, but Walter is on the scene. Peter drove him. Olivia tells Broyles that she has noticed a change in Walter; he is more open, and Olivia thinks Peter is the reason. Walter notices that the vehicles are magnetic, and he says that the floating objects the witnesses reported was due to an increase in the EM field’s strength. Walter tells Broyles that he needs parts from the cars and the plane wreckage in order to explain the change in the electromagnetic field. Walter then tells Peter and Olivia that he saw a sign for rhubarb pie.
Olivia, Peter, and Walter go to Westfield for pie. Olivia cannot get a signal on her cell, so she goes to find a pay phone so she can call Broyles. Peter and Walter enter a diner. Peter goes to the restroom. Walter orders pie. Walter learns he is in Vermont, which surprises him; he doesn’t drive, so he didn’t know where he was.
Olivia finds a car abandoned by the pay phone. The pay phone doesn’t work. Inside the diner, Peter finds a wounded man. At the counter, Walter enjoyed his pie, but the man behind the counter asks for Walter’s order again. Walter is confused; he has had the pie, and he is drinking coffee. The man accuses Walter of trying to steal food, so Walter orders another piece of pie. The man gives Walter a piece of pie, and then he attacks Walter with a knife. Walter defends himself the best he can; Peter rushes in and gets the man off of Walter. The man tries to attack again, but shots are fired. Olivia kills the man.
Peter and Walter tend to the wounded man Peter found. Olivia tells them there is another body behind the counter and that the town is deserted. Also, all the phones are not working. To help the man, they drive him to the hospital. The four of them are in the car. The man tells them his name, Cliff. They drive. They return to town. They drive some more, making sure to stay on the same road, but they can’t leave. They are stuck in Westfield.
They go to the sheriff’s station. They find a first aid kit and some supplies, so Walter can help Cliff. Cliff begins to feel better, and he tells them that the odd events started three days ago. A woman killed her husband, but she claimed she didn’t know the man. More people started to become confused, talk about leading a different life, and becoming forgetful. The victims got tremors and became violent. Those who are immune are in the high school.
Peter finds radios. Olivia and Peter gather supplies before going to the high school. Olivia mentions a military base is nearby (maybe this is a military experiment gone wrong), and she discusses a case she worked on. Walter doesn’t remember the case, but Peter does because it is one he worked on with his Olivia. Walter wants a gun, but Peter gives him pepper spray. Olivia gives Cliff a gun.
Day has come to Westfield, so time is passing. Olivia can’t start her car because of the changed EM field in the area. The four walk to the high school. Olivia’s arm shakes, she gets dizzy, and she has trouble talking for a couple of sentences. She tells Peter that it felt like someone else was in her head. Worried that she could be contracting the condition, she gives Peter her gun.
There are twelve survivors in the high school. Olivia takes command and reassures them that more help is on the way. Walter examines a woman who shows signs of the condition. Walter sees that the woman has two sets of teeth and mentions that the man at the diner had two irises; he thinks something is causing rapid mitosis, and the uncontrolled cell division is causing the condition. He tests the woman’s blood. She drifts between memories; one moment she talks about her husband and the next she says he is dead. She recognizes Walter; she says he is there to talk about air quality. I suspect somehow the town is merging with the other universe.
Peter cannot get a signal with the radios. Peter convinces Olivia to have Walter test her blood. After Walter draws her blood, Olivia tells Peter that she notices how Walter has opened up and relaxed more by being around him. Peter says Walter is a lot like his Walter. Olivia asks about his Olivia. Peter says she is stubborn, driven, and sees the best in people. He recounts how they met. Peter’s expression softens as he tells her that his Olivia gave him a place to call home. They had a routine; on Fridays, they would get takeout and watch movies. Peter mentions the place they got takeout; this Olivia has never been to the place.
A woman screams. The woman Walter examined killed herself. Cliff is worried; the woman was fine when they got there, but now she is dead. Cliff tells Olivia that he wasn’t supposed to be in town. He got offered a job, but turned it down because he wanted to stay in Westfield. Walter, using the school’s PA system, summons Peter and Olivia to the biology lab.
Walter found 92 chromosomes in the woman’s blood cells (normally, humans have 46 individual chromosomes organized into 23 pairs). Walter tells Peter and Olivia about a time he and Bell combined a small amount of material from both universes in a goldfish bowl. The DNA merged, killing the goldfish; the area around the goldfish bowl had altered gravity and electromagnetic field. Walter realizes that the Westfield from this universe is merging with the Westfield from the other universe. Walter says there is no way to untangle the two universes; the damage is done. He thinks the “immune” people do not have doubles in the area on the other side. Walter has no idea how this feat could have been done. The energy he and Bell needed to merge the two universes in a goldfish bowl was enormous. Peter asks if the Amphilicite (the substance Jones stole) could provide the necessary power. Walter says it could. Walter tells them that Olivia’s blood is fine, but things are going to get worse because phase two is about to happen. What is phase two? Cliff comes in and tells them they need to see something. They go to the roof. In the distance, a building shimmers then explodes. Phase two is the destruction of the town.
Tremors rock the town. The laws of physics are broken, and Walter has no idea what to do. Walter begins to withdraw. Olivia encourages Peter to talk to him. Peter asks if there is a force that could offset the EM energy. Is there a place where the opposing forces cancel each other out? Walter says they need to find the true center of the storm.
Olivia asks Cliff to find an older vehicle because the EM field interferes with modern fuel injection systems. Peter and Walter have a map of the town. They plot points and find the “eye of the storm,” the place where everyone will be safe.
A school bus will transport everyone to the safe zone. Everyone enters. Before they leave, a man attacks Peter. The attacker has two faces. Walter uses the pepper spray on the attacker. Peter knocks the man back. Peter dumps the two-faced man out the back of the bus. The bus heads to the safe spot.
The bus has to stop because the road is blocked. Cracks form in the ground, and the wave of destruction hits the bus. The bus disintegrates. Everyone gets into the shop. The storm comes. The storm passes. The town is dust and ashes, but the survivors are safe. Peter and Walter figured out how to save everyone together.
With the “storm” gone, people can enter the town. Broyles and emergency personnel have arrived. Broyles tells Olivia that several devices containing trace amounts of Amphilicite were found surrounding the perimeter of the town. They know that they need to figure out what Jones is up to.
Walter makes crepes back at his lab and wants Peter to join him, but he has plans. After Peter leaves, Walter’s expression reveals that he has grown closer to Peter. If Peter returns home, this Walter could be devastated.
Peter goes to Olivia’s. He wanted to check on her. He smells food, and he asks her what it is. She looks at him funny. He should know what it is; today is Friday, so she got their usual takeout. Olivia kisses him. Peter is stunned.
Yes, you read that correctly. The Olivia from the Peter-less timeline kissed Peter as though they are in a relationship.
How is this possible? How could this Olivia act like our old Olivia? This Olivia did show signs of the condition. But Walter said her blood was fine. If she had gotten the memories of the Olivia from the other side, Alt-Olivia, she would not have kissed Peter because Alt-Olivia just met Peter. I think the Cortexiphan combined with being in Westfield allowed this Olivia to either tap into or receive regular Olivia’s memories. This raises an interesting question: Is this a new timeline? Or has everyone just forgotten Peter and had those memories replaced?
I’m reminded of ‘Dark City.’ The Strangers would stop time and change peoples’ lives, giving them new memories. One day you could be homeless, and the next you could have a wife and kids. Season four started a couple of weeks after Peter used the machine. When he used the machine, could time have stopped, and someone (maybe the Observers) “wrote over” everyone’s memories?
But then I remember there is physical evidence of the new timeline like the pictures of Nina with Olivia. Also, there would be many people whose memories would need to be rewritten. Is it possible that the timeline with Peter could merge with the Peter-less timeline? I don’t know. I’m not sure what the rules are for this season of ‘Fringe.’ I know the people of Westfield were merging with the alternate timeline because the woman talked about air quality, and in the other universe, the air quality is poor, and people need breathing aids periodically. Again, how could this Olivia remember Peter?
I know I’m rambling, but the ending to this week’s episode deserves to be rambled about. It was five seconds, but those five seconds raised a pile of questions. I’m confused, I’m intrigued, and I’m obsessing about what is going on. Yep, I just watched another great episode of ‘Fringe.’
If you missed the previous episode be sure to read our ‘Fringe: Making Angels’ recap.