Fringe recap – 4×15: ‘A Short Story About Love’

Courtesy of FOX via SpoilerTV

After a month long hiatus, Fringe comes back to put some much needed questions to rest, neatly tying up a major thread that has dangled far too long this season.

Let’s take a closer look after the jump.

Despite a major reveal, this week’s episode was a pretty straightforward offering. Of course I’m talking about the inevitable reunion between Peter (Joshua Jackson) and Olivia (Anna Torv) and the confirmation that this world, where the majority of events have happened all season, is indeed the same storyworld pre-reboot. Indeed, my predictions were right all along – Peter doesn’t need to find a way back home – he is home. The catch? No one remembers him after he disappeared.

So why then has Olivia slowly been remembering him? Because her love for him is too strong and would not allow him to be erased. Aww. Of course, I’m not making it sound as sincere as the episode did, and although I’ve had my resistance to the whole Peter/Olivia romance (I think they function much better in a brother/sister relationship) the ending scene where they finally embrace and acknowledge their mutual, undying love was pretty darn sweet.

And Walter (John Noble) had a similar, albeit different, undying love. The reason why he was having visions of a ghostly Peter at the beginning of the season suggests that his unconscious would not let go of him either. I suspect it was primarily Olivia and Walter who manifested Peter back into the timeline, but perhaps we can throw Astrid (Jasika Nicole) and Broyles (Lance Reddick) into the love mix as well. Perhaps.

Courtesy of FOX via SpoilerTV

But how did we find all of this information out? Observer extraordinaire September (Michael Cerveris) reveals it all in a very matter of fact tone near episode’s end. Ever since his disappearance last episode, we see that he’s left a trail of breadcrumbs for Peter to follow in order to bring September back to this world. Turns out his observer peeps aren’t too happy with him and decided it was about time to stop September’s catastrophic interferences once and for all. After September puts his address on an etched contact lens in Peter’s eye (just go with it…), the younger Bishop manages to find September’s apartment and play with some of his gadgets. Eventually this leads him to a wide-open field where a huge bullet-like mass materializes from the ground once the gadgets (and Peter) draw close. Turns out this thing is a beacon, allowing September to find his way back from whatever netherworld he was discarded in by the other observers. Pretty trippy. As thanks, September does his best “Glinda the Good Witch” impression telling little Peter that he’s been home all along.

Although the season-long mystery had finally been put to rest, we didn’t get the answer in a particularly shocking way. And I personally didn’t see anything wrong with that. We’ve gotten plenty of jaw-dropping moments during the Fringe lifecycle, and I’m sure we’ve still got plenty more coming before the season closes. Not every revelation needs ceremony. I’m just happy that both we and the characters know that ‘reboot-land’ is the same as ‘season-1-3-land’ (with a few exceptions), and we can now move forward.

Other observations:

  • The episode was bracketed by the monster-of-the-week formula: This time round, in the form of Anson Carr (Michael Massee) a severely deformed man looking to find the perfume equivalent of true love (kinda similar to last week’s Once Upon A Time). By targeting couples that are deeply in love and distilling their pheromones (while killing them), Carr hopes to bottle up a love potion that will allow people to fall in love instantly. The superb guest star rooster continues with Massee who managed to be equally terrifying and surprisingly empathetic. Besides, don’t we all deserve to be in love?
  • John Noble delivers again even though he primarily functions in a supporting role this week. The moment he shares Peter when he acknowledges Peter’s ability to put others (read: Olivia) before his own interests was one of the best scenes of the night, as was his moment of comic relief with Astrid.
  • Broyles gets little more then a cameo in this week’s episode after being absent completely from many of the previous ones. I’m definitely feeling some Broyles withdrawal. Let’s hope a Broyles-centric episode is close on the horizon.
  • Lincoln (Seth Gabel) has a very sweet moment with Olivia when he asks her how she’s doing considering all of this weird shizz going on her head. She touches his hand reassuringly in which he blushes in response. As did I.

So what did you think Fringe fans? Happy that we’ve finally figured out which Olivia this is? Were you hoping for a more fantastical explanation? What do you think the next major reveal will be? Sound off in the comments section!

About tvangie

Angie is a TV addict currently pursuing a PhD in media studies. A freelance researcher and writer on the side – she really misses talking about her favourite shows because none of her friends watch them. Help her out.

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