Fox’s Fringe may be taking a week off this week – Next Friday sees the return of Agent Broyles, almost ensuring that the episode will be worth the wait – but that just gives us time to think about the future of the show as we know it. After all, three episodes into the new season, we have a pretty good idea of what to expect from the rest of the year… and what not to expect. In that case, are these five questions about the show’s mythology ever going to be answered?
What Happened To The Parallel Earth?
Surely the biggest of the unanswered questions of the series, the fact that Season 5 seems to be entirely avoiding the subject of the alternate Earth that was essentially the point of Seasons 2 through 4 seems somewhat strange. Sure, the idea of a war between the two Earths has been resolved, but unless something has happened to change things, severing the link between the two should have at the very least left the parallel Earth in a perpetual state of decay, from what we knew of the way things worked. Given that we now have characters we care about over there – Lincoln! – is it too much to ask that we get some kind of update about what happened to the second Earth? And, on a related note…
Why Hasn’t The Future of 2026 Come To Pass?
Yes, that’s right; I said 2026, but 2036, the show’s new time setting. Because it was 2026 that Peter flashed forward to at the end of Season 3, to see a war between the two Earths caused by the ecological collapse of both that could only be prevented by binding the two worlds together. While the two were bound together for most of Season 4, they were severed in the penultimate episode… so, even if we’ve not seen a war between the two Earths, shouldn’t we at least see an Earth that’s been massively affected by cosmic decay ten years later? (This has an easy answer; the Observers stopped it, somehow. Wonder if we’ll hear that referred to in the series at any point?)
What Was The Secret At The Heart of Massive Dynamic?
For four seasons, there were subtle and not-so-subtle hints that Massive Dynamic was up to no good, and Nina Sharpe was not to be trusted. Even when it seemed as if she was working on the side of the angels, there were still projects and information being held at the company that seemed just a little out of place, considering… (We’ve even seen both William Bell and an alternate Nina be behind nefarious dealings at the company at times). But, so far this season, Massive Dynamic has been totally absent, and from “Letters of Transit” last year, we know that it’s been shut down long before 2036. So, are the secrets of the company going to stay secret forever…? If so, it’s a big disappointment after all this time.
What’s The Deal With Cortexephan?
Another long-standing plot thread that’s seemingly been abandoned, the Cortexephan trials that Walter and William Bell carried out in the 1970s appeared to be trying to create a race of super humans for some unknown purpose – I think we’ve had at least two suggested reasons now, in different timelines – but the end result is that (a) we know there’s a drug that can turn kids into super humans, and (b) we know that it’s apparently left Olivia immortal, to all intents and purposes. So… Shouldn’t some of this be mentioned in a world where Olivia is leading humanity’s fight against, to all intents and purposes, alien invaders? Or have we simply moved on to another subject now?
What Is So Special About Peter?
This goes back to the question of the parallel Earths again, but Peter – a character who was born on one Earth, but lives on another – is somehow so cosmically important that not only did the Observers see fit to try and delete him from time, but he was also somehow able to come back. Was the latter something inherent to Peter, the work of Observer dissident September, or because of the healing power of love (I joke, but there has been at least a hint that Olivia was somehow involved)? Given the particular experiences of Peter and Olivia, you’d think that the Observers would make finding and killing them a top priority, and not leave it to half-assed Loyalists as they seem to be doing. Has the show defaulted to the position of Peter just being a regular human again…?
What other dangling plot threads are out there, seemingly abandoned in the show’s new status quo? And do you think any of them are likely to come up in the ten episodes we have left? Use the comments to share, people.