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Fringe 2.23 – Over There Pt. 2

It's kind of like The Parent Trap!

Grade: B

Going into last night’s episode of Fringe, I had perhaps unrealistic expectations. We’re finally in the other universe. We get teased with Olivia v. Olivia action. William and Walter finally have screen time together. And let’s not forgot that the last season ended with the World Trade Center still being intact in the other world. That’s a powerful image that most likely won’t be topped by any series anytime in the near future. And while Over There Pt. 2 was an extremely good episode of television, I can’t help but feeling slightly unfulfilled.

The main reason that I’m disappointed with Over There Pt. 2 is that all of the “twists” weren’t really twists at all. Peter is the bomb. We knew that from the last episode. Olivia-2 is going to switch with our Olivia. That became pretty clear in the last 10 minutes.

But besides that it really was another fantastic hour of Fringe. I can’t even be that upset at the ending because of how well done it was. Olivia character has been severely limited by Anna Torv’s acting abilities, but the last scene was so well executed and acted by both John Noble and Torv that it’s almost worth forgiving her (almost). The Olivia vs. Olivia-2 scene was also extremely well played out. Viewers have been waiting for this since the last episode, so it’s no surprise that it turned out to be one of the highlights of the episode. I mean, how do you fight yourself?

Also of note was Walter. Walter really messed up. Really, really badly. Looking at the blight and the¬†quarantines really paints Walter out to be a monster. It’s no surprise the other side hates us; their lives have been ruined thanks to our meddling. But Walter never meant for any of this to happen and is a moral man. John Noble’s reactions in the car ride with Leonard Nimoy are haunting. If this an doesn’t win an Emmy, there is no justice in the world. Also, kudos to connecting quarantine to the third episode of the first season. It makes it seem like those first throwaway MOTW episodes weren’t quite as throwaway as initial anticipated.

And typical of Fringe (and J.J. Abrams in general), there are more questions asked than answered. Where did the design for the doomsday device come from? Why does it work with Peter? What are Olivia-2’s orders? Is there anyway for the rifts between the universes to close? What is the Observers’ roles in all of this? Who are the “first people”? What is going to happen to Olivia in the cell? Why was the glyph code “Weiss” (like Sam Weiss, the bowling guy)? Not to mention the plethora of questions from the first season that still haven’t been answered yet (like, what exactly is on the data disks and why do people have them?).

While I’m painfully waiting for the third season to begin, I hope you all give it a look. Even though last night’s episode wasn’t perfect television, it still was damn good. Fringe is one of the best shows that is on television right now, even with Anna Torv. Check it out, it’s definitely worth your time.


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