Friday, September 30, 2011

Fringe 4.2: Better and Worse Selves

A fine Fringe 4.2, with a story that was an excellent science fiction tale on its own, with great resonance to the larger dual-reality narrative of Fringe.

The standalone story features a genius serial killer in the alternate reality, whose analog in our reality is a professor who studies serial killers.  Fauxlivia asks our Broyles if our Olivia can bring the professor over to the alternate reality to help stop the serial killer.  Alternate Broyles has come up with this idea-

Wait!  Wasn't alternate Broyles killed last year?  He was indeed, but apparently he's alive and well now, which means that Peter's disappearance, which of course had to change the nature of the war between the realities, in some way resulted in alt-Broyles not being killed.  Nice touch!  (And, on a minor detail level, so is gas selling for 99 cents a gallon over there -  I paid over four bucks a gallon for it today on Delancey Street in New York City.)

Meanwhile, things of course don't work out quite as expected when our professor is brought over to the other side.  He's managed to stay healthy because a woman named Margery showed him kindness as a boy - the boy on the other side had no such luck, and so grew up to be a psycho.   And the psycho gets the drop on the prof, and starts sucking out the prof's happy memory, which is the psycho's MO and the way he keeps from being totally engulfed by the darkness.   The alt-Fringe team - with Fauxlivia, Faux-Lee (though he seems more like real Lee with our Lee the faux), and our Olivia on the other side stop the psycho just time - the prof is not dead, just drained of his happy memory of Margery.

And here's the best part.  Back on our side, Broyles and Olivia wonder if the prof will turn into a serial killer, because he has no saving memory of Margery (it having been extracted from his mind by his psycho alternate, who by the way committed suicide on the other side rather than surrender to the alt-Fringe team).  But Olivia talks to the prof, who says something about stepping into the light - the words that Margery told him, which kept him sane.   Olivia tells Broyles about this, who remarks that when people make powerful impressions on us, those can never be erased, even if we no longer remember the specific person who made them.

A perfect set-up for Walter feeling Peter's absence, right, which I'd say will sooner or later happen to Olivia, too.   Pretty cool - and one good story.

Meanwhile, I from time to time talk about rock music in my classes at Fordham ... Maybe I'm a rock star somewhere on the other side.   If only life could be so easy and crazy ...

In the meantime, check out my essay The Return of 1950s Science Fiction in Fringe in this new anthology ...

See also Fringe Returns for Season 4: Almost with Peter

See also Fringe 3.1: The Other Olivia ... Fringe 3.2: Bad Olivia and Peter ... Fringe 3.3: Our/Their Olivia on the Other Side ... Fringe 3.5: Back from Hiatus, Back from the Amber ... Fringe 3.7: Two Universes Still Nearing Collision ... Fringe 3.8: Long Voyages Home ... Fringe 3.10: The Return of the Eternal Bald Observers ... Flowers for Fringenon in Fringe 3.11 ... Fringe 3.12: The Wrong Coffee  ... Fringe 3.13: Alternate Fringe ... Fringe 3.14: Amber Here ... Fringe 3.15: Young Peter and Olivia ... Fringe 3.16: Walter and Yoko ... Fringe 3.17: Bell, Olivia, Lee, and the Cow ... Fringe 3.18: Clever Walternate ... Fringe 3.19 meets Inception, The Walking Dead, Tron ... Fringe 3.20: Countdown to Season 3 Finale 1 of 3 ... Fringe 3.21:  Ben Frankin, Rimbaldi, and the Future ... Fringe Season 3 Finale: Here's What Happened ... Death Not Death in Fringe 
See also reviews of Season 2: Top Notch Return of Fringe Second Season ... Fringe 2.2 and The Mole People ... Fringe 2.3 and the Human Body as Bomb ... Fringe 2.4 Unfolds and Takes Wing ... Fringe 2.5: Peter in Alternate Reality and Wi-Fi for the Mind ... A Different Stripe of Fringe in 2.6 ... The Kid Who Changed Minds in Fringe 2.7 ... Fringe 2.8: The Eternal Bald Observers ... Fringe 2.9: Walter's Journey ... Fringe 2.10: Walter's Brain, Harry Potter, and Flowers for Algernon ...  New Fringe on Monday Night: In Alternate Universe? ... Fringe 2.12: Classic Science Fiction Chiante ... Fringe 2.13: "I Can't Let Peter Die Again" ... Fringe 2.14: Walter's Health, Books, and Father ... Fringe 2.15: I'll Take 'Manhatan' ... Fringe 2.16: Peter's Story ... Fringe 2.17: Will Olivia Tell Peter? ... Fringe 2.18: Strangeness on a Train ... Fringe 2.19: Two Plus Infinity ... Fringe the Noir Musical ... Fringe 2.21: Bring on the Alternates ... Fringe 2.22:  Tin Soldiers and Nixon Coming ... Fringe Season 2 Finale: The Switch

See also reviews of Season One Fringe Begins ... Fringe 2 and 3: The Anthology Tightrope ... 4: The Eternal Bald Observer ... 7: A Bullet Can Scramble a Dead Brain's Transmission ... 8. Heroic Walter and Apple Through Steel ... 9. Razor-Tipped Butterflies of the Mind ... 10. Shattered Pieces Come Together Through Space and Times ... 11. A Traitor, a Crimimal, and a Lunatic ... 12, 13, 14: Fringe and Teleportation ... 15: Fringe is Back with Feral Child, Pheromones, and Bald Men ... 17. Fringe in New York, with Oliva as Her Suspect ... 18. Heroes and Villains across Fringe ... Stephen King, Arthur C. Clarke, and Star Trek in Penultimate Fringe ... Fringe Alternate Reality Finale: Science Fiction At Its Best

                 Special Discount Coupons for Angie's List, Avis, Budget Car,, eMusic

The Plot to Save Socrates

"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

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