Sunday, January 20, 2013

Fringe goes out strong (Mike)

Jim: Ava and C.I. reviewed Fringe back in May of 2009.  It's a good show and I'll miss it and I can't believe it's been five years.  But Fringe has a special place for this site and longterm readers.  Our plan was to go dark after the 2008 elections.  We had announced that in a roundtable back in 2005.  Actually, C.I. announced it.  Fringe is the reason we didn't go dark. 

How so?  September 14, 2008, Ava and C.I. wrote in their TV coverage:

Fringe debuted on Fox last week and re-airs tonight. It's a roller coaster ride that, if you don't pay attention to what's actually happening, will move quick enough to keep you entertained. If you pay attention, you'll most likely be repeatedly outraged.
When we shared that judgment with a writer for the show, we were asked to wait until the mid-season to review the show (changes are promised -- don't believe it). We're more than happy to wait because the fringe was what really interested us. Not the show, not the writing, the fringe. Or, as some might call it, the lunatic fringe.

They were so busy, Ava and C.I., that they agreed to review Fringe after the mid-season started.  Which would be 2009.  It didn't even hit them when they agreed to it.  

I'm not complaining, we were willing to keep going, it was Ava and C.I. that wanted to quit.  So if you read these days and are glad we're around, thank Fringe (or curse Fringe if you wish we were gone).  If Ava and C.I. hadn't made an offhand promise, this site would have gone dark in 2008.

Fringe wrapped up Friday night and Mike has written about that at length.  


Fringe goes out strong

I just screwed up Elaine's site!  We keep a laptop in the bedroom. I usually blog on it.  Since I wasn't blogging last night, she used it.  No problem.  But I use SeaMonkey as a browser.  She never uses anything but Google Chrome.

I get on, pull up Sea Monkey and click "create post." I'm rubbing my eyes and trying to figure out how to write about the end of Fringe.  I dive in.  And I hit post.  And Elaine was using SeaMonkey last night and didn't log out.  I never log out.  It saves me time.  So you may have seen this at Elaine's site briefly.  I didn't even realize it after I hit post.  I booted down the laptop and Elaine's friend called to say, "Are you covering Fringe or did Mike post at your site?"

So I'm posting at both and adding "guest post" at Elaine's.  Here's what I wrote.

Last night, Fringe ended.  The last two episodes of the series.

The bad news, I still don't get the frog thing.  The frogs were supposed to be clues, remember? We were told that in the first two seasons -- not on the show but in press for the show.

Other than that the ending was perfect.  I think the key scene in the first hour was the scene where they learned that Windmark had ordered Michael taken to Liberty Island and that it was too protected for them to get onto.

Olivia: We need an end run.  We need to bypass security all together.

Peter: How?

Olivia: The other side.

Astrid:  The other side of what?

Peter:  You mean the alternate universe.

So Olivia's going to travel to the other side.  She needs to be injected with the drug Walter injected in her as a child.  Remember season four?  When Nimoy was trying to end the world?  To save the world, Olivia had to die.  Walter shot her because Leonard Nimoy's Billy was using her to open a portal.  He shot her in the head.  The only way to keep this universe from being torn. 

Billy immediately bailed and Walter called for Peter to help him remove the bullet.  The drug in Olivia's body was at its height and if they could remove the bullet, she would self-heal.  That's the magic bullet that saved the world.  And they gave it, on a necklace chain, to Etta and then, when Etta died this season (Etta was/is Peter and Olivia's daughter), they got the bullet back.  It's already helped Olivia with the people who grabbed her earlier this season.

So for Olivia to cross over now that all that drugs has burned out of her system (when it brought her back to life in season 4), she'll need to be injected.  There's concern because no one knows much about the drugs or what could happen to Olivia.  She's injected four times and it looks bad.  But she comes to and has 3 hours before the drugs out of her system.  If she hasn't crossed over to the other side and gone to Liberty Island there to cross back over into our side and grab michael, cross back over to the alternate earth to get him out of Liberty Island (our Liberty Island has no escape) and then go to Battery Park to cross back into our world, if this hasn't taken place in 3 hours, then the drug's effects will wear off and Olivia will be trapped on the other side or in on our Liberty Island that she won't be able to escape from.

So she crosses over and the other side has alarms going off.  Forces surround her and she raises her hands in the air.  Olivia2 and Lincoln are with her next.  (Remember in season four, Lincoln met Olivia2 and when the bridge between the 2 was closed, he decided to stay with Olivia2 because he was in love.)  Olivia2 and Lincoln have a family and are happy.  And eager to help our Olivia.

Olivia2 notices that Olivia's not right.  Walter had feared the drug might not be stable and told her to transport back if she's not able to see straight or has headaches, etc.  Olivia2 can tell something's going on but, because she's an Olivia, she just registers it for a second and never mentions it.  The way she'd want our Olivia to do for her if she was on a mission.

She even lightens the mood by telling Lincoln to stop checking out her younger ass. (Olivia is younger than Olivia2 because Olivia was suspended in amber for 20 years.)

They get her onto Liberty Park and to the room the area that, on our side, Michael should be kept in.

Windmark has questioned Michael, or tried.  Instead of making him bleed, Michael makes Windmark's nose bleed.  Windmark goes into the future and tells his commander that Michael has emotional and thought capabilities in advance of humans and watchers.  The commander says the boy is too important and must be studied.  Windmark says they must kill him because the unknown must be feared.  If they don't kill him, Michael could destroy them all.  The commander says the boy must be studied but that doesn't mean the boy has to be alive.  They'll kill him and preserve the parts.

The surgery is starting when Olivia crosses over.  She stumbles and is hazy.  She sees both layers blinking in and out, our universe and universe 2.  But she manages to take out one watcher.  She makes it to the surveillance room.  She kills the loyalist there and sees them about to operate on Michael.  She rushes to that room as alarms go off about an intruder.  A watcher tells the doctor and the nurse to stay with the boy and he rushes out of the room.

Olivia enters, kills the doctor and tells the nurse to stand still.  She then grabs Michael, who smiles at her, and helps him with his gown when a watcher enters.  Olivia transports out with Michael.  She and Michael are running down the hall when the Watcher crosses over.  He and Olivia start fighting.  She's on the ground but uses her brain to set off fireworks of sorts, she's shutting down the electriticy.  He looks away and she's able to kill him.  Another pops in and he's about to kill her when Lincoln and Olivia2 show up and shoot him dead.  Olivia yells, "Behind you!"  They turn and fire on a third watcher that's just crossed over.

They get Olivia to Battery Park.  She and Michael cross over.  She tells Peter, Walter and Astrid that they don't have much time, the watchers know she's been crossing over.

At the lab, during all of this September's been assembling parts of the machine he and Walter planned to save the world.  He needs another part.  He goes to a watcher who owes him and asks him to help.

Episode two (or second hour of the season finale) (last hour of the show) has many key scenes but, for me, it's really this one where Astrid shows Walter Gene.  Remember Gene.  She's the cow they've used for one experiment after another since season one?  This was her only season five appearance.

Walter's letting Peter know he'll be going into the future with Michael and he has to in order to save the world.  He and Peter are both trying not to cry and Astrid tells Walter to come with her for a second.  She takes him into the amber and shows him Gene.  She thought about taking Gene out of the amber but Gene moos so loud, the security guards on the university might have heard her and discovered the lab.

Astrid:  I at least wanted you to see her.

Walter:  You always know how to sooth me.  You always have.

Astrid:  Walter, this is not the end, we're going to win this and when we do, we're going to be drinking strawberry milkshakes in the lab and we're not even going to remember that this happened.

Walter:  That sounds lovely. [Pause]  It's a beautiful name.

Astrid:  What is?

Walter:  Astrid.

It's been a running gag on the show how, for five seasons, Walter's always getting Astrid's name wrong.  (I think he got it right once.)

Astrid and Olivia go to the watcher's house to get the part.  The door's open.  They enter.  There's a
watcher and a loyalist.  Astrid and Olivia hide on either side of a door and see the watcher hanging from a rope.

Olivia shoots the watcher.  Then Olivia slips off and Astrid stands there waiting for the Loyalist who comes into the door frame.  He aims at Astrid who lowers her gun as Olivia comes up behind him.  They want to know what happened to the part?  The part the watcher (December) was getting for September.  They no longer have the part. 

Olivia tells Michael he smiled when he first saw her, like he knew she would be coming.  She needs him to tell her what she needs to do now because without that part they can't get him to the future.  He tells her by putting a finger over his mouth.  Astrid figures out that they can use a shipping path/route.

Meanwhile where's Broyles?

Broyles was getting some things he thought they might be able to use.  But he's the one who found out Michael was on Liberty Island.  Only three people besides Windmark knew that. Windmark questions them and finds out that Broyles was told.

Windmark went to Broyles' office and told him he needed to question him.  They've already used a machine on Broyles' car so they 'heard' the last conversation Broyles had in it, on the phone with Olivia, where he said he'd meet them after he picked up some stuff.

Broyles, using the technqiue Emma taught him is able to stop Windmark from reading him.  He gets in his car and drives off.  But Windmark and the watchers are following him.

One of them was stupid enough to leave gloves in Broyles car.  This clues Broyles in on the fact that he's being followed.  He calls Olivia and they want to rescue him but he says that won't work, he'll just keep them occupied for as long as he can.

He tries to ditch them while he's under Boston Harbor.  Looked like the Callahan Tunnel to me, but ti was probably Ted Williams because that's the one every one uses.  Then again, if they really filmed on site, it would probably be easier to get filming access to Ted Williams Tunnel than to Callahan or Sumner.

So he ditches his car and goes running -- while traffic piles up -- to one of the foot exists and shoots the lock off.  He's in the stairwell and we're hoping he'll escape.  Just as he might, a Watcher shows up to stop him.

He's then taken in for interrogation.  It's the same building  that the part's being held.  Using a past fringe case, they soak the air with chemicals that breed in your stomach (when you breathe them in).  It's like Alien with things bursting out of the Loyalists and Watchers stomachs.  It stops Phillip Broyles' interrogation.  Olivia and Peter enter with gas masks as everyone's being evacuated.  They go to the surveillance room.  Peter figures out where the part is and Olivia sees Broyles on the monitors.  They rescue him.  He's safe because there are no ducts into the interrogation rooms. They give him a gas mask and he leaves with them.

Windmarks discovers that they are trying to reset time.  He pushes for his side to do so first.  September tells Peter and then Walter that he, not Walter, will go into the future with Michael.  Seeing Peter and Walter together and "saw what he meant to you and I understood what my feelings were" towards Michael "and why they were important."  Walter's upset but agrees.

A huge battle ensues as both sides are basically trying to open a portal in time,

Our side's winning and they're ready for Michael.  Where's Michael? Broken glass.

Peter runs to the van and grabs Windmark.  Windmark has Michael and was going somewhere, who knows where?  But Peter grabbing on appears to have limited his travel powers.  So he tosses off Peter and Olivia shows up.  He fights with Olivia and she fights hard, but she loses.  She's tossed to the ground not far from Peter.

Windmark grabs Michael and Olivia sees the magic bullet.  It slid off her during the fight.  She concentrates and begins moving things with her mind.  It distracts Windmark who is watching and she then moves a car so that it crushes him against another.

Michael's safe.  September's going to take him to the future.  In the future, this will all end when they see Michael and what he can do.  Boom.  Someone just shot September dead  Knowing there's no time, Walter takes Michael's hand and goes through the portal.

And we're back at that moment we've seen over and over.

Olivia and Peter in the park with Etta (five or almost five).  Peter calls to her and she runs towards him.  This is where the Watchers pop up and start shooting everyone.

Only that doesn't happen this time.

Instead, Etta runs to Peter's arm and the three of them  go back to their home where Peter finds a letter from Walter -- it's just a drawing of a tulip.

He smiles and that's the end of the show, the end of the series.  Time has been reset and, as Olivia had believed episodes back, they have Etta back.

My second choice of scene for this episode?  When Walter hugs Peter and tells him, "You are my favorite thing, Peter, my very favorite thing."

Great ending to the show.

Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Poll1 { display:none; }