Fringe season four is right around the corner so I am going to review season three finale . Before beginning remember to include the #WhereIsPeterBishop hash tags to help make Fringe trend on Twitter!
We also will include a series of special videos previews from Fox Broadcasting sprinkled throughout this Fringe review and analysis for your enjoyment.
In a nut shell, wow! Fringe is known for its mind bending episodes and in “The Day We Died” it left me begging for more.
The show went from having one reality to the alternate reality. In the season finale Fringe brought viewers into a third version of reality: a possible future where things have become much worse for our heroes. This reality had Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson) and Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv) a happily married couple.
The year is 2026! When Peter stepped into the machine and tried to turn it off, it threw him 15 years into the future. Peter woke up and went from 32 to 47 years old! His whole life changed as a result of the events of this. “The Day We Died” was an important factor in season 3’s overall direction. The season finale was the point where the old show ended and the new show began.
In “The Day We Died” Peter has come to grips with his destiny that he was the only one that could activate the machine, and that he alone could use it destroy the alternate universe to save the one he had come to call home. I am more than sure Peter did not know it would put him into an all new universe where things were completely different.
Ella Dunham (Emily Meade) was a Fringe agent and all grown up. Astrid Farnsworth (Jasika Nicole) was a full fledged Fringe agent. Olivia had Agent Phillip Broyles’s (Lance Reddick) job and agent Broyles seemed to be in charge of everyone. When Peter was thrown into this alternate universe he seemed surprised at first but after waking up at the hospital he remembered what he made Olivia for Breakfast. How can that be?
We quickly figured out through news reports that the reality that Peter had landed himself in was actually being torn apart by worm holes and vortexes opening up in London and Manhattan. This reality added a new terrorists to the show Moreau (Brad Dourif). Moreau was a leader for the “End of Dayers” group. Moreau and Walternate (John Noble) were plotting revenge on Peter and Walter Bishop (John Noble). Moreau and his group put some kind of futuristic bomb inside an opera house killing everyone. It was madness considering their world was falling apart already.
Speaking of Walter! This new reality that we were introduced to in the season finale had Walter in prison for causing the havoc that was going on in that alternate universe. The Walter Bishop we know and love was hated by many in that reality for causing all this chaos. Peter went to the holding facility where Walter was incarcerated and asked for a temporary release for Walter so he could help Peter,
When Peter stepped into the doomsday machine with the intent of destroying the twisted, yet familiar, Alternate reality first introduced in season two, he was taken aback when his consciousness was flung forward to the year 2026. In this potential future, Peter learned that the small fringe division that he was familiar with has morphed into a large, full fledged government agency, akin to what existed in the alternate universe. But as Peter lives the life of his 47 year old counterpart, he came to realize that this future had come to resemble the alternate universe in more ways then one. The entire universe is coming apart at the seams!
As the episode moved forward, we learned that in this potential future, Peter used the doomsday machine to destroy the alternate universe, in the hopes of saving the version of existence that he had come to call home. But because the two universes were linked together in a fundamental way, destroying one led to irreparable damage in the other. As a result, without both universes to balance each other out, the fabric that holds all of existence together had began to unravel. And while Peter was the man who turned on the machine, he was not the one who was been blamed for the imminent destruction of the universe. The man tried and imprisoned for that crime was none other than Peter’s father, Walter Bishop.
Because it was Walter who set the war of the universes in motion in the first place, by venturing into the other universe to retrieve Peter, causing massive instabilities in that world in the process, it was he who had been held responsible for the coming destruction. However; when a group of terrorists called “The End of Dayers” set off a bomb that rips a hole in the fabric of the universe, thus accelerating the imminent destruction of existence.
Peter realized that his imprisoned father was the only man capable of decoding the terrorists complex technology to stop them from acting again. When Walter stated that the only way he could attempt to figure out the inner-workings of the device was to get ahold of his old tools, in his old lab, Peter visited his old boss, the now Senator Philip Broyels, for help.
It was during Peter’s conversation with Senator Broyles that we are reminded of the true extent of the damage that has been done to this universe as a result of the destruction of the other one. Vortexes have been opened all over the world, leaving chaos and destruction in their wake. As Peter discussed these events with Broyles, he reminded the man that the only way future breaches could be prevented was if they understand the technology of the end-of-dayers that was causing these new breaches in the first place.
He begged Broyles to grant Walter a furlough from his prison sentence so that he could return to his lab and work on this device. Although the Senator was reluctant, he granted Peter’s request, accepting that Walter was probably the only man who could deconstruct the device.
As Peter escorted Walter back into his lab, we learned a little bit more about the younger Bishop’s life in this new and not-so-improved future, as the two men discussed Peter’s marriage to Olivia, and Astrid’s ascent into a full fledged field agent. What more, when Olivia herself arrived at the lab to greet Walter, we learned that she had learned to harness her latent telekinetic abilities, as she uses them to lift a box off of the ground that Walter had knocked over.
As Walter worked away at his lab, we learned that not only would the End of Dayers attack again, but the man who was funding their operation and building their breach-making bombs was none other than Walternate,” the ruthless Walter Bishop of the other universe, who fled his home existence shortly before its destruction
The episode moves forward, and Walter learned that there was a specific radioactive isotope being used in this device that left a specific signature, and was thus easy to track. Peter enlisted the help of the Fringe Division, which tracks the isotope’s signature all the way to an abandoned camp ground, with no discernable building where this bomb could have been made. But all was not lost, as a lone fringe agent found a small black box in the middle of the grounds. When Peter got a hold of this box, and saw that there was a key inside of it, he realized that the key led to the house where he was raised, which just so happened to be the place that Walternate was last known to be living.
Peter entered the house and confronted Walternate, who told Peter that he blamed him for his universe’s destruction. He formed the End of Dayers group as an attempt to unravel this world exactly in the way that his own world was unraveled. Peter tried apologizing to Walternate, but told him “two wrongs don’t make a right, and destroying the universe that is left will not bring your home universe back.” However; when Peter attempted to arrest Walternate right then and there, the older man revealed that he was, in fact, projecting himself into the cabin from another location, via a holographic projection. He had no intent of turning himself in to the authorities. Before the hologram of Walternate disappeared, he left Peter with a final chilling message. He intended to teach him a lesson by killing someone he loved.
Meanwhile, in Central Park, Olvia and Ella Dunham had witnessed another End of Dayers attack, and had been knocked unconscious as a result of a breach-causing bomb. But when Olivia awoke to find a giant vortex in the Park’s center, she was greeted by Walternate himself, who had been in the park the entire time. He had been using the holographic projector to make himself appear to Peter back at the Cabin. Fulfilling his promise to kill a loved one of Peter’s. Walternate shot Olivia! He left her to bleed to death in the park.
After Olivia’s funeral, a distraught Peter learned that his father had discovered the truth behind the doomsday device, and the “First People” who built the device in the first place. The device was built by Walter himself, in a different timeline, and then planted billions of years in the past by himself. Also alternate timelined versions of Peter, Ella, himself, and others. This revelation led the two men to realize that the only way that there was any hope of saving the past was by bringing Peter’s consciousness into the future. To see what destroying the other Universe would do, thus allowing past-Peter to change his mind. Walter warned Peter that doing this could cause dire consequences, but relents that it could not be any worse than the entire universe ceasing to be.
This, the watchful viewer realized, was exactly what we had been viewing all along. Peter Bishops view into the potential future of him using the Machine for destruction.
The episode then cut back to the present day at Liberty Island, inside the statue of Liberty, where Peter awoke in the machine after his viewing of the potential future. We learned that in real-time, he had only been in the machine for a full minute. Peter realized that he could never save the universe by using the machine for destruction. Peter used it instead to create a bridge between the two universes. Peter said “the two warring versions of existence can settle their differences and figure out a way to solve the instabilities on the other side before they destroy them both.” Peter saw that in his vision of the future.
As Peter explained his actions to members of both universes now gathered at Liberty Island, he suddenly began to fade, and vanished from the scene all together. But as Walter and Walternate exchanged not-so-pleasant words, we realized that neither of them seem to notice that Peter had vanished. The scene then shifted to the outer rim of Liberty Island, where a group of observers stood, staring at the statue of Liberty. One observer noted that no one inside the statue seemed to remember Peter at all. Another observer responded by saying “of course no one remembers him”. Peter had served his purpose, and had ceased to exist.
This was where the finale ended. Fringe left viewers to wonder just what, exactly, that last line meant. Many questions about the show were answered during this finale. We learned who the first people where, how the machine got into the past, and the ultimate consequences of using the machine to destroy the other universe.
But for as many of the answers “The Day We Died” gave, it provided a whole slew of questions, in true Fringe fashion. Where is Peter Bishop? What did the observers mean when they said he no longer existed? Does he no longer exist in the way that we knew him, or does he not exist at all? If he really does not exist at all, then how will this change the dynamic of the show?
Fringe returns Friday September 23, 2011 with the season four opener “Neither Here Nor There”. In the meantime we include the full episode season three finale episode “The Day We Died” courtesy of FOX via Hulu and a sneak peak of what is coming in season 4! !Enjoy.
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