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Season 4's New Context: "It Is Impossible"


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#1

jophan

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 11:23 AM

Since the topic's been blessed, let's go. If you have a better thread title, let me know.

Major themes:
* Is this the old reality re-written or is Peter right about being in the wrong world
* Are most of our characters really better off without him?
* What's with this Olivia/Lincoln business?
* Are TPTB insane?

Edited by jophan, Nov 23, 2011 @ 11:24 AM.

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#2

Money Magnet

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 12:21 PM

Every choice creates a new timeline/universe, so yes, the Yellowverse is the Blueverse rewritten, yet there is also a Blueverse for Peter to go back to if he can. (September screwed up.)

In some ways, our characters are not better off without him.

Is YellowOlivia meant for Lincoln? Unknown. Peter seems to think so, at present.

Are TPTB insane? No, they're just adventurous.
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#3

CorwinOfAmber

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 2:16 PM

Something Fringe likes to do is pull back and give you a look at the characters and story from a different perspective. That's what season 3 was really about, contrasting Walter and Olivia with their opposites. That couldn't be done for Peter without introducing a third universe...so lookee here, season 4 and a third universe. Although what we're looking at now is how Peter changed Walter and Olivia.
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#4

blue green

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 2:58 PM

Yes TPTB are a little insane, or at least a little ill advised I think. This timeline is boring. So far anyway.
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#5

Ageha

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 3:13 PM

Yes TPTB are a little insane, or at least a little ill advised I think.This timeline is boring. So far anyway.


I definitely agree they're a little insane, but ill-advised? Not so much. I'm not bored in the slightest.

Are TPTB insane? No, they're just adventurous.


Potay-to, potah-to (ugh, I'm not actually sure how I should write that ;) ). I think to be adventurous you have to be a little insane. Or at least what the norm would call insane, anyway. ;)
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#6

NorthTexas

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 4:47 PM

Great idea for a thread jophan. I see allot of people wondering the same things. I thought I knew what was going on but the interview Pinkner and Wyamn did with TV Guide threw me for a loop, so I have no idea. If it truly was a different timeline then I would have expected to see what was going on in the blue timeline that Peter disappeared from by now. It's a long time to be kept away from the original characters of Walter, Olivia et al.

Again, if it's not a different timeline with no merging twist in the future I thought they would have brought more tension to Olivia and Lincoln's growing affection for one another. As Peter is happy about it and doesn't seem to care, that makes me not worry. It's all very comfortable. And not 'comfortable' in a red herring way.

Edited by NorthTexas, Nov 23, 2011 @ 4:50 PM.

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#7

Money Magnet

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 4:52 PM

I have a long track record of getting bored/disillusioned with my favorite TV shows. I usually jump ship way before the end comes.

This is not happening with Fringe, however. So I'm pleasantly surprised. The showrunners are continuing to hold my interest (helps now that Peter's back, though). Even last season, I imagined that they would push things to the limit on Fringe and not stop for conventionality, and that they'd lose audience, and I might very well be one of the lost audience... but I'm still here!

Edited by Money Magnet, Nov 23, 2011 @ 4:54 PM.

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#8

jophan

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 6:30 PM

Great idea for a thread jophan.

It wasn't really my idea. shapeshifter proposed it as a place for general discussion of the year that won't get us booted out of the episode threads. So, once you've said enough about the specific episode actions, you can come here and set the into the "context" of the rest of the season and the earlier ones. The caution is going to be discriminating whether stuff belongs in Speculation Without Spoilers instead.

There have been a lot of shows that I've sampled and walked away from, but once it makes it to "favorite" it takes an egregious foul-up or other major change for me to let go.

This year, I think the main problem is that it's all been preliminaries, setting the scenario. It didn't surprise me that Peter returned in 4x04, partly using the 2x04 resolution of Olivia's meeting with Bell as a pattern; spoilers confirmed it, but I already had that idea. Showing his reaction took another couple. 4x07 had its points, but felt thin, perhaps because it was emphasizing Peter's distance from Fringe Division. As a setup for 4x08 it wouldn't have been bad, but as a pre-hiatus closer, it wasn't enough.

I hope the "spring season" is paced better than S3's. I accept the Bellivia arc, little as I liked it, as a likely setup for future reference. But they had to leave some other things hanging (like Mr. X) because they ran out of time.
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#9

Money Magnet

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 7:32 PM

I also keep in mind that the buildup and pacing of the storyline from midseason-2 onward into midseason-3 was relentless and very thrilling... so much so, that anything else seemed like "losing steam." That happens on shows sometimes, that they reach peaks and then go into (relative) valleys. That's OK.

I feel like the show is definitely going somewhere in Season 4, but the pace is a bit more leisurely, and I'm fine with that because they have more characters to work with. The worst stretch of Fringe was the first part of Season 1. I'd say that the second half of Season 3 also suffered in comparison to the best stretches of the show, because it seemed too many threads were introduced and dropped (Walter and Peter at odds over his shapeshifter-killing... Mister X, etc).

But relatively speaking, Fringe's plotlines always seem to breeze along at a fast clip (to the point where viewers often feel that too few nuances are being explored). Of all the "Peter is gone" episodes this season, I think the only episode that didn't work was 403 "Alone in the World" which just felt like filler designed to placehold an obligatory plot-beat. Of course, others might say that about other episodes that I've liked :-)
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#10

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Posted Nov 24, 2011 @ 6:11 PM

I'm not sure how much the showrunners knew of the schedule ahead of time, but I've of prefer if they moved the second episode "One Night in October" to later in the season (obviously with changes since it's post-Peter returning) to make sure they get in "Back to where you never been" in before the break, and put a draw-down episode afterwards like with "Entrada" and "Marionette".

However I'm impressed by the willingness to change the world and allow important events to be important as well as avoiding the obvious easy way out. It would have been easy to quickly return to a comfortable status quo (I'm looking at you Mentalist, Hawaii 5-0), but the writer stuck to their guns.
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#11

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Posted Nov 24, 2011 @ 11:15 PM

I agree the pace has been very slow this season, but beyond that, I feel they've dipped too many times into the "metaphorical" plots. I'm missing the action episodes, thrillers, stories with real suspense. My sense is that nearly every episode is an allegory this season, and they leave us looking for all-too subtle clues we can tie to the overarching mythology. The styles are not varied enough to be interesting to me. It's all too vague.

I'm actually hard-pressed to say what's happened this season to move the story forward, other than to say thar Lincoln was brought into the fold and Peter returned. We're seven episodes in, and that's really all I can come up with.

While I enjoy character development, I prefer a fast-moving plot and that's been lacking this year.
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#12

Money Magnet

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 8:38 AM

I don't see where they could have just arbitrarily dropped "One Night in October" later into the season. The episode sets up the whole situation of the truce between the worlds, how uneasy it is, and I think the next episode (8) will come back to elaborate on that setup in a big way.

IMHO, here's what's happened so far: a lot of establishing.

-The Education of Lincoln Lee
-Peter's return and difficult readjustment (subplot: new friendship with Lincoln)
-Walter dealing with his madness and with Peter's return
-Olivia growing troubled by something within herself
-Two worlds in a truce, but still not trusting each other

-September's botched plan
-Shapeshifter and Nina weirdness

Naturally, this all seems low-key after Season 2 (OMG another Universe and Peter's life is a BIG LIE!) and Season 3 (it's the END of the WORLD!) Showrunners operating under the assumption that we know and love the characters/worlds so much that less heated storylines will hold our interest. For me, that is a correct assumption, but maybe I'm not in a majority. All I know is, to keep up the superheated pace of the last 2 seasons might risk a decline into silliness. To keep being grownup holds its own risks, I guess.

BTW, some see a love triangle developing between Peter, Lincoln and Olivia. I'm not sure where they're going with that, but if they were, it seems like a very honest triangle situation. Peter genuinely believes he is in the wrong place, and seems to think this Olivia and this Lincoln belong together. But, what if that's not true? I wonder if that "what if" still needs to be played out.

Triangles aren't bad - dumb triangles are bad. You could hardly call this situation "dumb" - it would be a pretty honest triangle situation.

Sadly, I think I know what's going to happen. If Fringe doesn't make it to Season 5, everyone will blame the showrunners for Season 4, and that will be the official "verdict," rather than another possible verdict: that the showrunners decided to push the show in a more mature, reflective direction and not enough fans wanted to come along.

But that's OK. I thought the show was going off the rails toward the end of last season (low point being Walter's scene in the chapel) and I'm just enjoying the ride for as long as possible. No good show goes unpunished. :-)

If I felt that the showrunners hadn't earned my undivided attention, I might feel they were getting pretentious, but I absolutely don't feel that way. It's not really a matter of "trust" but rather, I am willing to approach the show and its characters in a new, bit more serious mode - the world of Season 4. (And I know a Season 5 would also mean a whole new direction too)

One criticism I can understand is that Season 4 isn't as "fun." I'll give that a nod - but also say that for me, characters coming face to face with their doubles for the first time will never NOT be "fun" (wondrous, eerie) so I am totally looking forward to naive little Lincoln undergoing that eventually. It was a big part of the reason why Episode 402 was so very brilliant IMO. The sense of wonder and horror we should never lose.

Edited by Money Magnet, Nov 25, 2011 @ 8:16 AM.

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#13

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 8:43 AM

-Two worlds in a truce, but still not trusting each other


I think this one has been particularly neglected considering how far in we are. I expected more. I liked the early Olivia/Fauxlivia scenes, but it's been way too backburner since then IMO, considering the very fabric of both universes is supposed to be at stake. The whole thing has this weird blase feeling about it. Kind of ironic that Olivia spent some of the last ep talking with Nina about how she doesn't have much of an emotional charge about the fringiness of things. (OLIVIA: You know, even with my colleagues, I'm different. Things that should bother me... do you think that it's possible the Cortexiphan Trials stunted my emotions?)

Maybe someone has been spiking the water supply with some sense-of-urgency-inhibitors in this timeline.

Edited by blue green, Nov 25, 2011 @ 8:51 AM.

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#14

lojo5

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 8:51 AM

I have just finished watching all of the season 4 episodes this week (after a marathon of season 1-3 over the last month). Sadly, I have been unable to resist reading through these forums/episode commentaries right after (or even before :) watching, so I am spoiled and a long-time lurker. Love this show and can't wait to see episode 8!

I really don't get the feeling that the show is building towards a Lincoln-Peter-Olivia triangle after seeing all these episodes. I think that Peter has too much to work through in terms of where or when he is and what happened that matchmaking seems....well, not really a thing he would be working on. The glasses to me seem to be important for another reason....maybe they can allow the wearer to 'see' shapeshifters? Lincoln being the only one to routinely wear glasses, and the only one to approach Peter as a 'normal' person and be kind to him, so he would be the logical one to whom Peter would give these to and ask to trust him on wearing these. (I don't think he bought the 'safety glasses' in the store thinking of them as an fashion accessory for Lincoln to be noticed by Olivia! This is Fringe!)
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#15

CorwinOfAmber

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 9:29 AM

I don't have much of a problem with this season so far. It's like a game of chess. The opening is sort of boring, not much happens, but you move the pieces around and set things up for later.
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#16

lizw65

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 10:01 AM

Re the "triangle" issue: it seems to me that this season in particular, fan speculation is increasingly being taken as canon by viewers, and an unusual amount of time is being spent focusing on things that, when you come down to it, haven't even happened yet.
My personal opinion, FWIW, is that it's a red herring, but I've certainly been dead wrong about the direction this show has taken in the past, and I'm sure I'll continue to be in the future.
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#17

MsTaken

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 10:18 AM

I disagree with the notion that being a mature, layered and intelligent show means that Fringe shouldn't still be entertaining and enjoyable. In fact, for me, part of being a good, "quality" show means that it's fun to watch; not because I think TV should be a perpetually cheery and lighthearted romp, but "fun" in the sense that I genuinely enjoy spending time in the show's world and with its characters. I no longer enjoy spending time in Fringe's latest universe and with these weak, watered down versions of my formerly beloved characters.

IMO, TV shouldn't be medicinal; something we're just bravely trudging through in hopes that eventually it will prove worthwhile, and that we'll then feel better for having taken it. As a viewer, I'm open to myriad possible 'destinations', but I have to at least somewhat enjoy the journey.

And that's why I've given up the show. It's not necessarily because I lack the patience, maturity or intelligence to understand and appreciate what they're doing, but because I'm simply not enjoying the way they're doing it. (Note: I probably DO lack patience, maturity and intelligence; but that's not what contributed to my decision to stop watching the show! ;)) Theoretically, I think the concepts behind what they're doing this season are fascinating. The actual execution, however, has fallen flat as a pancake for me. A lot of things are theoretically riveting but not actually enjoyable to watch on a week-to-week basis, and IMO S4 of Fringe (and, actually, much of S3 as well) falls squarely in that category.
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#18

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 10:26 AM

fan speculation is increasingly being taken as canon by viewers, and an unusual amount of time is being spent focusing on things that, when you come down to it, haven't even happened yet


Agreed.

So, if the show isn't "fun" any more to some, what do you think would make it more fun?

Personally, I think an episode about the Observers (particularly if they focused on a young Observer - like the guy we met in the first episode) could have serious potential for fun, even though the Observers are The Most Serious Part of the Mythology.

(I'm also thinking back to Season 1, the first part especially, which was pretty much all "fun" and no seriousness...)
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#19

MsTaken

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 10:57 AM

So, if the show isn't "fun" any more to some, what do you think would make it more fun?

Personally, I think an episode about the Observers (particularly if they focused on a young Observer - like the guy we met in the first episode) could have serious potential for fun,


I like this idea a lot. Plus, a return of characters I genuinely like and in whom I feel invested. And a less dreary, glacially paced feel to the show would be very welcome to me. The majority of the show now has a tone that, IMO, ranges from relentlessly gloomy and angst-ridden to (even worse) a muted, dull and self-serious detachment. A little vibrancy and maybe a few moments of genuine joy would make the show infinitely more fun to watch for me.
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#20

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 11:25 AM

I think in this season a lot of joy has gone out of the characters; this is not, IMO, the same as the joy (or fun, if you will) going out of the show. I'm loving the ride and can't wait to see where it will take us; I just hope that the writers will be given sufficient time to take the story to a logical and satisfying conclusion.
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#21

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 11:30 AM

I'm glad that the next episode is headed Over There again; I've missed Over There. And I was extremely skeptical that there would be a point to having the blended universes this season - but I saw the point immediately after the first two episodes. Unfortunately, Over There has been largely absent (except for a brief nod in episode 406 when Walter was reading the instruction manual to one of the Over There detectors) but I imagine that will change soon.

Over There is and continues to be fun. Over Here has become not so much fun. And I understand why it hasn't been fun, but I can also understand why that would be a problem for other viewers.

Fringe runs the constant risk of being either too silly or too dry. In hindsight, some of the Machine stuff last season was verging on the silly. Maybe they're verging on being too dry this season, for some.
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#22

Ron Smith

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 3:45 PM

I think in this season a lot of joy has gone out of the characters; this is not, IMO, the same as the joy (or fun, if you will) going out of the show. I'm loving the ride and can't wait to see where it will take us; I just hope that the writers will be given sufficient time to take the story to a logical and satisfying conclusion.

I don't disagree with this thought entirely, but I want to ask (and anyone can answer) - was there much joy in the characters at all based on what we've seen?

Olivia: her boyfriend dies an extremely weird and gruesome death, she was tested on as a child by Walter and Bell then abused by her stepdad when she got home; she eventually lost her partner and was kidnapped by the other side to have MORE experiments done on her as well as almost have been killed in trying to get back home...a home where she had to quickly deal with the fact that no one could tell the difference between her and her alt.self thus making her even more closed off until about "LSD".

Peter: he's felt different most of his life, he doesn't like nor wants to see his father up until VERY recently - who was locked up in a mental institution for almost 2 decades, he loses his "mother" to suicide when he is a teenager, and in the midsts of solving weird mysteries with a man he hasn't had any care for within the last several years, he finds out that he's not only a kidnap victim and he's not from this universe completely, but the people around him didn't tell him at all. Peter felt false joy with Faux in the first half of season 3, but he lost that when he found out was deceived and it took him a while to get THAT back (again, roughly LSD).

Walter: Jeez...how can you not say "poor Walter" regardless of his mistakes. Personally, I even feel bad for Walternate and BOTH Elizabeth's because they're the biggest victims; Walternate just becomes the villain in the bigger picture in how he handles the other universe, but each one of them loses a son. Our Walter ends up losing a wife and agreeing to have his memories taken away from him which though it's supposed to protect him (didn't help per season 2), it's made him a shell of his former self and by season three it left him feeling that Walternate was his intellectual superior.

Even looking at the alternate universe and Fauxlivia's relaxed personality, they live in an entire world that's been deteriorating since 1985 at least. I don't think these characters have ever really had joy or even happiness, not for long enough periods to truly appreciate it. I think we have a series with characters who are attempting to find joy (and happiness) in the midsts of their individual circumstances, but looking at all of the characters - even our Lincoln, it's very hard to not be bleak when you lose very close people in your life THEN find out that everything in your world is not as it seems (to somewhat quote Walternate from 4x08's promo).
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#23

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 5:41 PM

What has been true in my life is that joy and grief and pain and blessing and hardship coexist. Rarely is everything perfect; rarely is everthing all that bad. When my mother was diagnosed with cancer, we (the family, including her) were cracking jokes and laughing in spite of our broken hearts. I read an autobiography of a concentration camp survivor. Even there she found joy/comfort in small things: a blue sky, sunshine on her face, a bird flying over...

The Fringe characters of seasons 1-3 could make me laugh and bite my nails almost at the same time. They were going through hardships, but they were doing it while trying to connect with one another.

In season 4, thus far, that connection has been severed, on purpose, I think, by the showrunners. But in fiction especially, it's risky if the viewer/reader feels disconnected from the main characters. That's what keeps them watching or turning the pages for more. I get why the ratings show that people are tuning out.

Honestly, I only felt a total disconnect with the last episode myself, so I'm hoping that I'll find the next episode more satisfying. What a long wait!

Edited by Catherineusa, Nov 25, 2011 @ 6:15 PM.

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#24

Ann louise

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 8:28 PM

I'm actually hard-pressed to say what's happened this season to move the story forward, other than to say thar Lincoln was brought into the fold and Peter returned. We're seven episodes in, and that's really all I can come up with.


Agreed. I just don't think all this groundbreaking/setting up need to take eight episodes. It reminds me of people who defend The Phantom Meance's with "well, we needed all of that to set up the scene for the next two movies"

At least in S2 and 3, there was an underlying tension that kept me interested while all the bricklaying was going on. Knowing about Peter (or at least knowing something was up by seeing his grave) made me wonder when the shoe was going to drop on Peter and Walter. The Redverse/Blueverse episodes of last season had the tension of "when will Peter open his freaking eyes" and "when/how will Olivia remember who she really is?"

This year hasn't had that - I don't feel any underlying tension about what this universe is, or how it relates to the characters I watched in previous years. It's not as boring as The Phantom Menace (what could be?), but I'm as eager for Peter to leave as he is.

Edited by Ann louise, Nov 25, 2011 @ 8:31 PM.

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#25

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 9:23 PM

As a fan who has been interested in the overall plot as much as with the character interactions, something that appears to me to be a minority position, I think this turn of events was in a way necessary - the blue-red verse storyline we were on was NOT providing significant answers to the unanswered questions of the plot that had been brought up over the first three seasons.

The overall purpose of the observers as a whole ( as opposed to September's need to fix his mistake when he distracted Walternate in his lab) did not appear to be getting any clearer - WHY was September there to observe Walternate cure Peter? I would like that answered. The origin of the machine was revealed to be a time loop in the first three seasons - the characters we met dug it up, but it turns out they were the ones to bury it - so in that story line the machine has no actual point of origin, no builder.

Given this, I am glad they took this sharp turn, even if it means upsetting all the existing character dynamics.
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#26

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 9:57 PM

* What's with this Olivia/Lincoln business?

Personally, it's one of the things I love the most about this season because, up until now, the only permutation I've seen was the unrequited crush badass Lincoln had for Fauxlivia so it's been a treat to watch Fauxlivia's response to nerdy Lincoln in the new and improved Amber verse, to contrast it with the uncertain interaction between nerdy Lincoln and the Amber Olivia as well as the badass Lincoln's almost non-response to an Olivia that's not his own.
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#27

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Posted Nov 26, 2011 @ 3:45 AM

For me the season's been a mixture so far. I do find these versions of Walter and Olivia, pretty interesting, particularly Walter. I think this version of Walter reveals things about the layers of Walter's predicament in the world. It shows in a way the price blue Walter pays for thinking that he can live the rest of his life in redemptive mode, where he simultaneously is Peter's father and accepts he has to sacrifice Peter to save the worlds as an act of atonement for putting them on the path to destruction. I think this Walter shows that there may be quite a lot of wishful thinking in that. This Walter has much less of a notion that he is a redemptive force and holds himself firmly against the temptation of being Peter's father. I suspect somewhere in blue Walter this Walter is there too. This season in a way is a dramatisation of Walter's deepest fears and the way he uses his sheer enjoyment of the universe's complexities which are also what have created his tragedy just to enable him to live on a day to day basis. Although I would have liked rather more of him in the last few episodes, I think this approach gets away from some of the issues that emerged with Walter's role in the latter part of season three, which had become rather one-note around his fear of losing Peter. Walter needs layer upon layer as a character and he needs to be much more than Peter's father and this structure gives them that as well as the chance to recreate temptation around Peter again for him. We knew by the end of last season that Walter would put the universe before Peter. There was no choice for him than to do that, especially as that was Peter's choice too. This structure sets up the possibility of a more complex and dramatically wrenching temptation for Walter.

The pacing, however, I do find frustrating. The problem for me began with the shapeshifter episode. That felt like returning to an old vein of something without as yet clear purpose and narrative wise I feel we've been treading water ever since. I also think that the metaphors of the monsters of the week aren't quite working in parallel with Peter's arc at least with us as viewers not knowing whether we are in another universe or another timeline. The penultimate episode from the metaphor would suggest that Peter has to live in the here and now but he is embarked on an alternative notion of leaving for 'home'. In the last one Eugene was looking for acknowledgement in the here and now and that was going to kill him and other characters were articulating the idea that it would have better if he hadn't lived, which applied to Peter means he dies in the here and now of being eight. This may all make sense when we see the whole thing but it is not helping at all getting any narrative momentum going.

I am also pretty indifferent to Lincoln. I am glad this structure gives us a break from Peter-Olivia which for me dragged things down in the second half of season three, but sticking Lincoln in to give Olivia company on the cases wherever the story line is going is doing nothing interesting. I would rather they had taken the chance to beef up Broyles' role, where I think there is much under-used potential.
Even if a love triangle were well done in itself, I am probably going to grind my teeth through it. I hope that whatever is going on there is first and foremost about giving Peter hard choices and is character driven around that.

Finally, I do find the absence of the red world mystifying. I can't at the moment understand that as a choice. The visuals of the place really add something to the sense that this is a story in which the universe has declared war on the planet. And why oh why does a show that has Walternate at its disposal go seven episodes without using him?! More Lincoln and less Walternate I guess is where they really have me scratching my head much as I like the big choices they made.

Edited by Effra, Nov 26, 2011 @ 5:40 PM.

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#28

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Posted Nov 26, 2011 @ 9:27 AM

I do find these versions of Walter and Olivia, pretty interesting, particularly Walter.

What I like the most about this Walter when compared to the one of my DVDs is that, not only it confirms to me his madness is what makes him a better man, but how his quiet desperation seems to exacerbate only when Peter is around.

Last season's Walter was a man searching for forgiveness, this season Walter is a man who already feels like he has been punished IMO. Peter's presence unbalanced him out because I think his son seems to be a prize he doesn't feel worthy of, which I think it's a neat contrast to Walternate (who has always seen Peter as an excuse for venagance IMO).

Edited by agora, Nov 26, 2011 @ 9:30 AM.

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#29

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Posted Nov 26, 2011 @ 4:39 PM

This universe's Walter is older and wiser. Less joyful (though not utterly so), but less prone to Blue Walter's "Italian Widow" act, also- a worrywartness that it took Walter all of season 3 to finally ditch (and not a moment too soon, IMHO, because Walter obsessing over Peter was starting to get old). Walter's insanity this year is... not so funny: agoraphobia, obsessive-compulsiveness, self-lobotomy. I am expecting Walternate to have less of a pole up his ass, but we'll see. (Then again, his son DIED during a kidnapping, so who knows)

Olivia's personality difference seems to be part of a future plotline, perhaps (as some have speculated), the shapeshifter mystery.

The only flaw this season has is that it has even more balls in the air than usual, IMHO. Not confusing plotlines (to me anyway) but once again they have a trove of stuff to explore and nowhere near enough time or airspace to do it all. But that was a weakness of last season also - some felt that Over There was not well explored. It's a good problem to have creatively, but if you promise a lot of things and leave some fans feeling like they didn't get everything they wanted, maybe that's not a good thing. But the showrunners seem aware of this problem, which is why the canon storyline has spilled over into a comic book (Beyond the Fringe).

Edited by Money Magnet, Nov 26, 2011 @ 5:12 PM.

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#30

lojo5

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Posted Nov 27, 2011 @ 10:21 AM

The term " amber universe" is such a nice metaphor for what has happened this season--Peter has been cosmically removed from his loved ones lives in a way we aren't allowed to understand as of yet. Olivia and Walters lives now have holes that have been " ambered over", so to say, in a metaphorical way, and the joy is missing in their lives because Peter is missing. I think the show has not so subtlety hit us over the head with how Peters life was important, to them at least, and how he made them better people by being in their lives. And I would suspect that the full reality of what has happened and what he has lost will hit Peter pretty soon. This is a pretty harsh reality for someone who really never fit in himself and never felt like he had a home.

Personally I don't think this new "universe" will stay, even though it seems like we have been in it for a long time. And i think it is more of a "sidestream" of the time-space continuim off of the blue universe, diverting from where Peter crossed over into the blue universe the first time when he was 8, and was not saved. I think Peter and the machine inadvertantly connected in the wrong side stream or eddy of time. And I think Walter and Olivia both will somehow ultimately revert back to 'normal' and 'remember' Peter...quantum entanglement and all. I am not sure whether this will be by Septembers interference, by their memories from the mainstream 'bleeding' through, or by Peter manipulating the machine again. But I am convinced it will be a good and worthwhile story and well worth the wait!
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