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Fringe, “Amber 31422” (3.05)

Twins hide from Fringe Division and Olivia works with Walternate to cross over. It’s our first Fringe review after the jump…

You are Here: The Other Side

How’s Olivia?

She’s feeling pretty bad. She’s popping pills like House used to and hallucinating just as much. Plus, she hits pretty much the lowest low a good cop can hit in a cop show: she’s taken off a case.

Peter, as a personification of her old consciousness and memory, is here, harassing her to realize who she really is. And it looks like she is realizing. Her successful trip back home seems to have proven to her that she does know things she shouldn’t and that she is indeed Olivia Classic. Regardless whether Olivia ever regains her old consciousness, she might be motivated in saving “our” world from Walternate’s plans just to not harm the niece she just discovered she has. In the end, she does lie to him and says that she didn’t cross over. However, realizing she isn’t really Fauxlivia will also mean letting go to the guy (she thinks) she loves and her mother. To add to that, her ability to cross over is pretty basic and temporary and necessitates a lot of extra support and drugs. She’ll need to refine things if she wants to come back home.

How’s Walternate?

He’s still evil, and still trying to use Olivia as a pawn. It doesn’t help when we discover that he invented the Amber 31422 that’s being used to quarantine unstable parts of the universe, trapping people in it while doing so. He feels bad about it and it is shown as being a necessary evil but it doesn’t help his image when he reveals that those inside aren’t dead and that he wants to keep that a secret.

How’s The Case?

It was a good story about guilt, regret and sacrifice. It also helped us learn more about the amber being used to keep the world stable. Now, I’m not sure if this was intentional – probably was – but wasn’t there a case in earlier seasons where this same kind of traveling through walls to steal things was used in “our” dimension?

And a final quick observation: Isn’t it bad enough that Astrid is Walter’s assistant? Why does her double have to be nothing more than a computer jockey here?

In Conclusion

A good case and some definite story progression with Olivia. It’s what the show needs to not let the “Olivia switch” story get stale and this episode had both.

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