Saturday, November 17, 2012

'Fringe' recap: 'Five-Twenty-Ten'

The gang on the hunt. Courtesy Fox.

This week on Fringe, Peter is well ensconced on his crazy train of revenge. He is stalking Observers, using his new abilities to foresee their patterns. He uses this to target Captain Windmark's top lieutenants. To this end, he convinces Anil to help him. In contrast,Walter continues to struggle with the man he is becoming. Unlike Peter, Walter is afraid. One wonders if Peter can even feel fear anymore.

He returns to the lab, where Olivia confronts him about leaving her behind... again. We find that Peter hasn't been sleeping. Do Observer's even need to sleep? Walter and Astrid have freed Tape 5, and they all sit down to watch it. The tape describes two beacons, bullet shaped devices the Observers made. They help them to teleport through time and space. The beacons are hidden in a storage facility designed by William Bell. This is why Walter chopped off Bell's hand earlier in the season. In piecing together all of their memories, they believe that William Bell was really working for the Observers, but they need the beacons. "Fire up the laser, Agnes! Let's get that hand out of amber."

Unfortunately, the building is in a bombed out area, and the entrance is blocked by wreckage. Peter can clearly see where the doors are with his nifty new vision. While he's lying about how he knows this, he starts bleeding from his ears. Hey, I'm sure that's not going to be a problem. Anyway, back to the matter at hand. They need Nina Sharp to use her magic Observer science to zap the wreckage out of the way. Peter skips out on this mission, claiming Anil needs his help. He really needs to go see why the plan he setup for Anil didn't work. The Observer didn't follow what Peter saw happening in his head.

Nina and Olivia share a tender moment of grief over Etta's death and then get down to business. Nina asks Walter if he has noticed any changes to his personality since the implant. Some, he answers. He assures her that Peter will not let him become that horrible person he use to be. Oh, Walter's faith makes me so sad. I fear Peter will let him down.

Back in the city, Peter and Anil discuss what happened. Peter realizes that he failed to see a variable. He decides that he must do it himself. Royce's next destination will be an Observer restaurant. While he hotwires a car to get there, he has a small blue-tinged seizure. It would appear his brain might just be melting. What do you think? He enters the restaurant and waits for the Observers to show up.

While Walter digs around with one of Nina's lab geeks, Astrid and Olivia have a talk about Peter. Olivia isn't stupid. She knows Peter isn't telling her the truth, even though he always has an explanation for everything. When the lab geek finishes geeking out over meeting THE Walter Bishop, he shows Olivia and Astrid how to use the sublimation device. Nina takes this moment to warn Walter that she doesn't think that love will be enough to save him. That her love couldn't save William. That love can't compare to that God-like power he and Walter both had. This brings out Walter's old self. He cruelly tells Nina that Bell never loved her, that's why she couldn't save him. He and Peter will be different. Only Walter doesn't know that Peter is having his own God-like existential crisis, now does he?

At the restaurant, Peter finally makes the briefcase switch and heads back to the others. He leaves Anil outside the restaurant to see what happens. When the Observer opens it, it explodes of course. The explosion contains a flesh eating toxin from Walter's cold storage and their very first Fringe case. The Observer's face quite literally melts off his face. Ewww.

All they find inside Bell's storage building is a safe. Well, and one of Walter's David Bowie albums. "It's not enough he had me institutionalized, he pilfered my record collection as well!" Now that's the Walter I love! What they need must be inside the safe. Walter remembers when Bell had it built, to hold the things he valued most. The safe is empty, except for some round electronic gizmo, and a picture of Nina. Upon seeing the photo, Walter looks ashamed of himself. Peter somehow activates the gizmo, and the beacons tunnel up through the floor to them. As they rush to leave the building, Peter very stiffly proclaims it's only logical for them to split up. Before Olivia can argue with him, Walter interrupts wanting to make a stop on the way home. He takes the photo to Nina, of course. He gives it to her and admits that he was wrong. That William did love her, but it wasn't enough. "I'm scared, Nina." Terrified of who he is becoming, he begs her to cut the pieces of his brain out again.

Olivia returns home to find that Peter is already there. He has filled the room with memo boards and notations, tracking the Observers timelines. Like any good villain, he explains it all to her. His speech is very stilted and Observer-like. He finally tells her that he put their tech in his head. “We're going to avenge Etta. Windmark's next." he tells her. As he turns back to his timelines, she slowly backs out of the room.

Meanwhie, Walter is forlornly looking at all of the things they have collected on this quest. The thought unifier, the radio, and the beacons. He puts on his reclaimed Bowie album and "The Man Who Sold The World" fills the room. The music plays as Peter continues his work. He puts a hand to his head and finds a handful of hair has fallen out. Is this the beginning of the baldening of Peter?

The next episode of Fringe, "The Human Kind" airs at 9 p.m. ET on FOX, Dec. 7.