TOP

Fringe Season 5: 5 Questions About “Five Twenty Ten”

by  in Comic News, TV News Comment

Just the title of this week’s Fringe episode – “Five Twenty Ten” – raises questions. What does it mean? Is it a 90210-esque zipcode? Is it the percentage of Olivia losing her cool when she finds out what Peter has done to himself? Or the collective number of Twizzlers that Walter has eaten across the whole series? Expect an answer – and five more sensible questions – under the jump.

How Do The Observers’ Powers Work?
If the Observers’ technical implants give them the ability to predict the most probably future, as Peter explained that he was doing to the Observers, exactly why haven’t the Observers gone on to completely destroy the Resistance and the Fringe team altogether? Yes, yes, I understand that there are the variables within everyday reality and everything, but still: With all of the Observers, they wouldn’t be able to account for the variables and “win”? Part of me wonders if they’re playing a slightly different game to the one that everyone thinks that they’re playing: What if they’re still manipulating things to ensure that they exist in the first place, by pushing events to the point where Peter becomes the first Observer? After all, you saw how he was acting this week, and now that he’s losing his hair…

Is That Really Just Marathon Man?
Color me somewhat unconvinced that Walter’s recollection of his meeting with William Bell and the mysterious other man with an accent really was just him getting mixed up with a memory from the movie Marathon Man. Sure, it was a funny/sad moment and all, but why didn’t anyone seem interested in pursuing it beyond that? I wonder if the man with the accent was the mysterious Donald…? Oh, and talking of William Bell…

Have We Seen The Last of William Bell?
The mention of Bell “selling [the Fringe team] out to the Observers” struck me, because… Well, what would Bell have received in return for that? The last we saw of Bell, chronologically-speaking, was in “Letters of Transit,” where he was trapped in amber and had his hand severed/stolen by Walter – Is it possible that he could have been discovered and de-ambered afterwards? Could he still have information on Walter’s master plan (Perhaps even more than Walter does, let’s face it) – and, if so, would he still be useful to the Observers?

Was That Really Walter’s Brain Implanted Inside Him?
Or, my William Bell paranoia, Part 2. For the second week in a row, Walter talks as if the “old” him that’s growing inside his brain as a result of the re-implant in “Letters of Transit” is another person. Of course, it is in many senses (Walter as he has become throughout the series is clearly a very different person from the one who worked with Bell way back when), and it’s a device that allows the Walter’s Brain Implant/Peter’s Brain Implant parallels to be all the more obvious as well. And yet, I find myself wondering: What if that wasn’t actually a piece of Walter’s brain that was re-inserted? What if it was William Bell’s, or someone else’s, and the idea of someone else taking over Walter as a result is just a little bit more literal than anyone has actually realized…?

What Has Happened to Olivia?
This one is less a serious question and more a gripe. Remember when Olivia Dunham was someone who would get things done, and wasn’t content to just stay in the background and say “Something’s probably wrong, but I will just be worried and not actually do anything about it”? I can understand some of the reasons behind Olivia’s passiveness – She is not only grieving for her daughter, but she is also twenty years out of time and in a world where she has, to all intents and purposes, lost everything already – but, even so… This Olivia just doesn’t feel consistent with the character from the last four seasons, and as the season continues, I find myself wanting the old Olivia back… or, at least, a new Olivia that would actually stand up to Peter and not just leave, distressed, when she realizes that he’s done the stupidest thing imaginable.