TV Show: Fringe
Episode Title: The Firefly
Original Air Date: January 21, 2011
Episode Number: 3×10
An Observer makes contact with the Fringe Team to help rectify a mistake. Meanwhile, Walter befriends Roscoe Joyce, keyboardist for Walter’s favorite 1970s band, “Violet Sedan Chair.” Walter will learn the real reason the band broke up, and realize that the lives of these two men, who have never met before, overlap in strange and unexpected ways.
September, you are such a dramatic Observer. All of that just to test his experiment that Walter would be willing to let Peter die and that when the time comes, he will be willing to do it again. I’m just kidding about the first sentence. This was an awesome episode and rife with mythology and introduced even more questions as to what the Observers are doing and why they’re doing these things.
I’m not sure if the series of events that September triggered here was him trying to course-correct things when he saved Walter and Peter…or maybe he put both Bishops in the path of that woman he saved at the jewelry store so that Walter will be there to save her. Hmm. Maybe this was September’s way of saving someone else when he failed to see Roscoe’s son’s death just because Peter caught a firefly and causing a ripple effect that led to Bobby’s death.
That conversation between Walter and the Observer was illuminating and his story about the firefly was pretty cool. However small our actions, there will always be consequences, even minor, and we rarely think about these things because the consequences are of no consequence to us. Just think about one decision in your life that you’ve made and imagine what would have happened if you made a different decision. How would your life be different now? It’s maddening to think that way, but at the same time, it’s quite fascinating to imagine how life would be like if only you did that instead of that.
“There are things that I know, but there are things that I do not know. Various possible futures are happening simultaneously. I can tell you all of them, but I cannot tell you which one of them will come to pass. Because every action causes ripples. Consequences both, obvious and unforeseen.”
Even the Observer can’t predict the future because there are too many possibilities and he doesn’t have the capacity to predict what people would decide on their own until they’ve done so and even then, he can only see so far into the future before he gets stuck again. This is actually very reminiscent of the plot of the movie Arrival, in a sense. Don’t worry, I won’t spoil the movie here.
And what was with Peter ingesting the milk that Walter was going to drink and test it for himself? Was this also part of September’s plan, to put Peter’s life at risk while saving Walter? Walter did say that if he drank that milk, he probably would have died and it’s only because Peter is younger and ingested that aspirin (and Olivia being in the lab with him) that saved him. Very scary to see Peter having a seizure in the lab like that. Thank God Olivia was with him and she was able to follow Walter’s instructions.
I’m glad we are getting continuity on the Peter/Olivia front and it looks like Olivia is slowly getting past Fauxlivia infiltrating her life, but she still has a ways to go in dealing with Peter and their relationship. Getting that book Peter got for Fauxlivia certainly didn’t help, but I loved the scenes that we got where Peter explains to her that he got it for HER and not for Fauxlivia.
“It’s always been easier for me to keep people at arm’s length which is actually something that I think we have in common. The book wasn’t meant for her. It was meant for the Olivia Dunham that I’ve spent the last couple of years of my life with. Because I wanted you to read it. You’re the person I wanted to share it with.”
I swear, I’m not crying. It’s just raining on my face. I thought this was a beautiful speech. Olivia doesn’t react much and instead says: “Everything is different. Even you opening up to me is different. And this book is just a reminder of all the things that I missed. Conversations we didn’t have.” She’s still in the grieving phase which is totally understandable, but she’s starting to open up again to him by the end of the episode when she asked why that was his favorite book.
“Because it talks about not depending on other people for answers. That you can only find the answers inside yourself. Which, given our current situation is kind of amusing if you think about it.”
Now it makes me want to check out the book and read it for myself because that is a philosophy that I can get behind.
Other random observations:
– It was cool to see Christopher Lloyd aka Doc Brown of Back To the Future fame playing Roscoe Joyce. Definitely a win for the casting department.
– Roscoe calling Astrid “Kelly” made me laugh! That doesn’t even come close to her name.
– What did September mean when he said to Peter “It must be very difficult, being a father”? Please don’t tell me Fauxlivia is with child. 😧 Or maybe he’s referring to Walter. Yes, I’ll go with that one.