Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Fringe recap: S1E20 "There Is More Than One of Everything"

The EMTs bring Nina Sharp into the ER.  She's unconscious from the whole being shot thing, and the EMTs are weirded out by her robo-arm, which has been stripped of its skin-coat.  Up in Boston, the Fringe team has heard what happened and is already on the case, reviewing the security footage from Nina's building.  They watch as a team of masked men - one is technically bandaged, not masked - shoot Nina, mutter to one another and then black out the camera for four minutes, whilst they do something untoward to the unconscious and bleeding woman.  The FBI runs the muffled voices through some voice recognition software and determine that the bandaged man is Jones.  He seems to be falling apart somewhat, post-teleportation.  The team wonders what Jones did to Nina in that four minutes they couldn't see.  Olivia jumps up on her soapbox and starts ranting about wanting to bring William Bell in for questioning.  Broyles, hilariously, tries to get a word in edgewise and tell her that yes, he's already starting to make those calls.

The next morning, Peter, Olivia and Astrid are all looking for Walter who has gone walkabout again.  Olivia has a slight crisis of conscience about upsetting the old guy at the pastry shop but Peter says that he, and Walter, understand. No one on campus has seen Walter so Peter heads out to search for him.  He's probably not going to find him since Walter is at some remote cemetery, staring down at a headstone whilst the Bald Man watches from a little ways away.

Nina wakes up in recovery.  Broyles is there and tells her it was Jones.  He asks what they did to her arm.  Nina wiggles her robo-fingers and tells Broyles to get Olivia here.  When the younger woman arrives, Nina tells them that Bell is not funding Jones's techno-terrorism: Jones used to be a valued Massive Dynamic employee but there was a falling out and Jones was fired.  Ever since he escaped from the German prison, he's been trying to contact Bell and Nina thinks Jones is trying to kill him.  She goes on to promise that if Olivia will stop Jones, Nina will personally set up a face-to-face meeting with Olivia and Bell, and Olivia will have all her questions answered.  If Jones gets to Bell first, however, all bets are off.  Olivia asks what Jones did to Nina's arm: he removed an incredibly potent power source.

Out on a rainy street, Jones and his team set up a bunch of tech that runs on the pilfered power source.  When they turn it on, the passersby cover their ears in pain.  A shimmer appears in the street, revealing a window into the alt-verse where a semi truck, under sunny skies, is heading towards them.  But the tech won't hold - "It's too thick at these coordinates," bitches Jones - and the shimmer closes, cutting the truck in half.

The Bald Man and Walter stand on a beach.  The Bald Man hands Walter a coin, telling him that it isn't hte one he thinks it is: "There is more than one of everything."  He asks if Walter knows this place and remembers what he's come here for, because there isn't much time.  Walter nods grimly and heads up the beach to a derelict house.

Broyles and Nina stop by the Harvard lab to ask Peter and Astrid about Walter's current whereabouts - they think he might know what Jones is up to.  When they learn that Walter is missing, both Nina and Broyles jump on their phones and order their respective organizations to search for the missing man.  Nina's team wins, soon passing along a photo of Walter at a North Shore commuter rail station, not far from the beach house the Bishop family used to own.  Peter muses that Walter liked it up there because it was quiet and heads out to collect his father.

Olivia and Charlie stare at the truncated truck.  "Where's the rest of it?" asks a bewildered Charlie.  They interrogate witnesses who confirm the shimmer and a man with bandages on his face.  Then Charlie is handed a report which completely befuddles him: the VIN, the parts serial numbers, the registration tag ... none of the truck's identifying numbers exist [in this 'verse].  "This truck doesn't exist! Where the hell did it come from?" He sounds pretty upset.

Back at FBI HQ, Olivia's like, WTF is going on - what's with this truck and where in the world is William Bell?  Nina rolls her eyes: "That's the trouble, Agent Dunham.  He's not in this world."  Charlie is having a really tough time getting his brain around the alt-verse concept but Olivia, who's been edging up to it for some time now, is totally on board.  Broyles is too, because he's complicit with Nina.  (Meanwhile, Jones and his crew get out of their SUVs at some soccer field in Providence.)  Nina tells the Fringe team that jOnes is using the tech out of her arm to try to cross over into the alt-verse and kill Bell.  Suddenly, every single cell phone in the room starts ringing.  That can't be good.

Up at the beach house, Peter finds Walter inside, frantically running from room to room, getting more and more agitated because he knows he has to find something important that he left here, but he can't remember what it was or where he put it.  Peter tries to calm his father, finally recalling a memory of when he was very young and Walter would make them whale-shaped pancakes on the weekends.  For some reason, Walter's brain clicks at this and he scampers up to the attic.

Out in the Providence soccer field, the witnesses are shaken up, describing the shimmer that opened and then slammed shut.  Trouble is, one of the soccer players was running through the shimmer when it closed and it decapitated him (and then some).  The decapitated bits are nowhere to be found - they're on the other side.  Eew.

Back at HQ (because Providence is like a block from Boston - the geography in this show is total crap), Olivia requests all the X-files from the file room.  [Sorry, but wouldn't she have gone through all these weirdo Fringe files AGES ago?  That's what I thought.] Some time later, she has put together a map of all the Fringe occurences and thinks she has made a connection between Jones's latest shenanigans.

Walter opens a trunk in the beach house attic and pulls out a lockbox.  There's a dusty coin sitting on top of the box - looks like the one the Bald Man handed him earlier.  Peter helps him open the box and he removes a gadget.  Walter opines that back in the day, he and William Bell used to do a lot of LSD (Peter is so not shocked by this "revelation") and were convinced that hallucinogenics offered them glimpses into the alt-verse, although they wanted to try to get there themselves.  Bell's cortexyphan experiments were to alter the children to have the ability to travel between the realities.  "Around this time, something was lost to me, Peter, something previous."  Walter decided to cross to the alt-verse and take from there what was lost to him here. 

But he had to find a soft spot between the realities to do so - otherwise the membrane between the 'verses is too tough.  But the world's advance technologies are messing with the natural order of things and creating more soft spots between the 'verses than there should be.  So Walter built a patch - this gadget he's uncovered - to close any holes between the realities.  He thinks that he knows where the next soft spot will be.  Fortuitiously, back at FBI HQ, the team has figured out the same soft spot location.

That dark and rainy night, Jones's crew sets up their tech at Reiden Lake.  "Come on, men, we're going to the other side!"  Peter and Walter arrive at the lake, Walter nervous about being late for whatever it is that's about to happen.  When they get out of the car, Olivia's FBI team pounces on them.  Then everyone figures out they're on the same side and move towards Jones.

This time Jones's tech works perfectly - the soft spot is soft enough.  Shots are exchanged between the FBI and the bad guys but Jones stays focused.  Walter shows Peter how to use the patch gadget and sends him in.  As the portal between the 'verses opens, Jones walks forward, ignoring Olivia's shouts for him to stop or she'll shoot.  So she shoots, but the bullets pass harmlessly through his body, a by-product of his post-teleportation bodily degradation.  Jones starts to step through the portal and Peter fires off the patch gadget.  The portal slams closed, slicing Jones in half.

Later, Broyles stops by Olivia's office and tells her that he's sorry, but they've been ordered to cease and desist in their investigation of William Bell.  And this time they have to pay attention to it.

At the lab, Walter is missing again but this time he's left a note - first time ever, which delights Peter - saying that he'll be back, and this time he knows where he's going.  He's gone back to that rural cemetery, actually, where he places one of those coins on that headstone.  The camera moves so we can read it: Peter Bishop, 1978-1985.  Walter stands there, weeping.

Olivia gets a phone call from Nina, asking her to come to NYC tomorrow so Nina can hold up her end of the bargain.  Olivia goes to the hotel and sits in the restaurant.  And sits and sits and sits and sits.  Nina never shows.  Pissed off, Olivia stalks to the elevator. 

In the elevator, there are some weird flashes of light and the doors open onto a bright white, futuristic corridor.  A tall, elegant young woman greets Olivia by name and takes her to a swanky office.  She walks around, puzzled.  A door opens behind her and Leonard Nimoy (!!!) walks in, introducing himself as William Bell.  She asks where they are and he smiles, saying it's complicated.  As the episode ends, Olivia walks to the windows and looks out as the camera pulls back: she's standing in one of the Twin Towers, which in this 'verse did not fall on 9/11.  That's a damn ballsy final shot.

Previously on Fringe / next time on Fringe

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