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4-18: "The Consultant" 2012.04.13


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#91

GreenPhoenix

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Posted Apr 14, 2012 @ 11:54 PM

I didn't notice the AltLincoln mother inconsistency, so perhaps the "new" writer didn't either.

I'll assume that a lot of the last episode and a lot of this episode were written simultaneously (if you're going to have multiple writers, you might as well take advantage of that). There would of course have to be a lot of communication between Christine Lavaf and the other writer to maintain plot continuity, but last week's line about Lincolns' mothers was a throwaway line and the dialogue with Lincoln's (step)mother here was irrelevant, so I'm not surprised that something like this fell through the cracks.

I think Stephen Moffat gave an explanation similar to this when fans questioned a continuity issue for two Doctor Who episodes.

#92

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 12:52 AM

Peter and Olivia alone in the lab? Walter might want to change the sheets.

#93

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 1:09 AM

Peter and Olivia alone in the lab? Walter might want to change the sheets.


Ha!

#94

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 8:48 AM

I think Stephen Moffat gave an explanation similar to this when fans questioned a continuity issue for two Doctor Who episodes.

Heh, forgive me if this doesn't make me more understanding (Moffat!!! /David Tennant).

The part about Lincoln's dad is actually the easiest to disregard because that mention was ages ago and it's likely everyone forgot (of course there was no need to mention the hardware store last week, if the writers didn't know/didn't research the details, the Lincolns could have just said their dads had gotten reassigned or transferred or something vague. But still). The mom though? That was mentioned just last week? No one caught that? It would have been an easy mistake to fix, they could have amended the scene to include a tragic father being left all alone and grieving for his son. But I guess they needed a distraught mother because that's more dramatic. Eh. Plus, the episode ignored the fact Our Lincoln was basically seeing both of his dead parents and that still strikes me as an oversight.

And I agree that this episode confirmed Alt!Lincoln is totally dead, not because of the funeral but because Alt!Broyles was exposed (so a faked death would serve no purpose whatsoever anymore).

I suppose Jones could be doing it to bring back a dead child. It would fit with a common theme. Or to bring back the love of his life.

I agree that I'd like to see a motivation for Jones. We've all often talked about this, about how Fringe isn't a hard sci-fi show etc, but every once in a while I'd like to get some actual details, not just vague statements like "the machine healed the worlds" and "Peter was erased" and "love brought you back" and "he wants to collapse the universes". I'd like to hear how something works in simple but not simplistic terms. With regard to Jones, who is a scientist, an explanation in the form of a Villain Monologue would go a long way for me. A couple of lines about frequences won't cut it for me, I'd like to know what Jones is hoping to achieve, how this will work, what will be left in place of the two collapsed universes. Let's see if we'll get it.

#95

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 10:57 AM

As far as motivation, it seems clear that Jones is as formidable a player as Bell or Walter and he feels that he got no respect. He is proving that is at least as good as Bell or Walter in messing with the universe. He's going to make a bigger bang just to prove that he can.

He may well have some other motivation -- lost love, dead child, ingrown toenail -- but I think the main point is that Bell gave him no respect. Hell, Don Draper hardly tolerates him. But that's a different timeline. Oh and then there is the question of having Dumbledore for a father in yet another twisted timeline. But I digress down a rat hole...

Edited by sleepingwalker, Apr 15, 2012 @ 11:37 AM.


#96

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 11:24 AM

I agree. I think DRJ does what he does just to show that he can. He's (possibly) a sociopath and definitely a narcissist.

#97

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 11:25 AM

Peter and Olivia alone in the lab? Walter might want to change the sheets.


Actually Walter will probably want to put the sheets under a miscroscope and do expiraments on them. eeeew.

#98

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 12:10 PM

He is proving that is at least as good as Bell or Walter in messing with the universe. He's going to make a bigger bang just to prove that he can.

I agree with that. But why is he doing this specific thing? And where will it all lead? If the "collapse" will, like, erase him from existence will it matter? Or if will erase those he wants to convince of his greatness? What if after the collapse/merge/whatever all his actions are forgotten, like Peter's in the Season 3 finale? Wouldn't that be a devastating blow to his narcissism? He must have a plan or else an idea of how this will end. That's what I'd like to know.

#99

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 12:28 PM

I think he's doing what he thinks has to be done, and that the animosity between him and Bell was a cover. But I've been wrong before nd will be again.

#100

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 12:29 PM

I think DRJ is after collapsing the universes so there will be just one, he'll be the leader of it, and he can genetically engineer the perfect humans (his willing followers, who presumably will be spared from the collapse).

#101

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 1:13 PM

That was my take on it too, MM. DRJ wants to be God, creating a new world from the rubble of the two collapsed universes, and populating it with his, "children," be they porcubats or whatever.

#102

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 1:15 PM

Well, I'm glad we finally got some answers on Alt-Broyles. I was wondering if his wife and son still existed. It was a good fake-out with him meeting his counterpart at The Machine.

Ugh. I did not like Walter so cheerfully referring to Peter as "my son". It just seemed so off. And fanservice-y? Like the writers got the memo that "old" Walter was missed; but this is after they spent most of this season showing us that this Walter is not the same.

Also, it's curious that we've seen so little of Walternate this season.

So David Robert Jones wants to something related to merging the universes; but all his experiments so far have resulted in destruction. However, he knows that the Machine has successfully merged at least that room, but it seems to me that if used it, the result would be one universe with a whole lot of doubles. By the time we get insight into his true goal, it'll probably be the finale.

#103

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 2:46 PM

About Lincoln not reacting to seeing his alt-parents: We jump in mid-scene where he's been watching them for awhile. Maybe he had a bigger reaction when he first saw them? I'm not really sure what kind of reaction someone would be expected to have in that situation anyways (which has never happened in real life). I was mostly just hoping Alt-Lincoln's parent wouldn't see our-Lincoln.

#104

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 2:52 PM

Hey Princess Lucky, as you mentioned,

We've all often talked about this, about how Fringe isn't a hard sci-fi show

and

A couple of lines about frequences won't cut it for me, I'd like to know what Jones is hoping to achieve, how this will work, what will be left in place of the two collapsed universes. Let's see if we'll get it.

This reminds me that this week we had some of the shakiest pseudo-science we've seen to date, namely that our two universes vibrate, not just on a certain frequency, but on a certain note! I always wondered why I prefer songs in the key of G – turns out it's my home key! We even had the "menorah of tuning forks" to give us the hard data that backs up this rock-solid science! Gotta love Fringe. The writers/producers must laugh long and hard when they come up with this stuff!

But yes, some specifics would be nice. If we look at DRJ's two "tests" this week, they both involved causing "accidents" (one plane, one car) using a device that caused simultaneously identical effects in both universes, but the participants remained in their respective universes. If he had the same sequence of events planned for Broyles and the machine, one would assume some kind of destruction, probably an explosion, that would affect both machines in both universes. This destruction of the machines would presumably undo the bridge and any healing that they had accomplished, but it doesn't necessarily follow that a collapsing or merging would take place. If anything, you would expect a rift would result, one that completely separates the two universes again. So, it will be interesting to see how the nefarious plan actually unfolds, and not to worry, I'm sure we will be seeing it!

You were also talking about the general oddness of AltLinc's "mom" being at the funeral, which reminded me how her line about burying your children must have been about the 100th time I've heard that in a movie or TV show. I would expect a little better from Fringe writers.

Having said that, I enjoyed when Bolivia threw Meana's line about being a pawn back in her face, it was a very touché moment.

So David Robert Jones wants to something related to merging the universes; but all his experiments so far have resulted in destruction. However, he knows that the Machine has successfully merged at least that room, but it seems to me that if used it, the result would be one universe with a whole lot of doubles. By the time we get insight into his true goal, it'll probably be the finale.

If this is somehow what happens as Jones has said, in some way (see above), it will likely be that those who have no doppelgangers (like Jones) will remain unscathed. Which sets the stage for a DRJ vs. PB deathmatch!

#105

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 9:24 PM

I thought the vibrating in a certain key was...interesting. It does fit with the glimmering that Olivia reports seeing around items from the other side, but my mind kept asking questions about how that works with people who cross over...do they vibrate at the different key (apparently not, oh, disembodied hand)? How do people interact with items that are vibrating at the wrong key? Is it uncomfortable?

I totally understand that altLinc's stepmom might have been there and said the line about "parents should not bury their children". I know some people who are closer to stepparents than their real parents. Especially if she had been around a while, she may consider herself just as much a parent as his dad.

I'm guessing that AltAstrid didn't go to the funeral because events like that are really hard for some people on the spectrum. When you struggle with understanding emotion, an overwhelmingly emotional event like a funeral is really tough and can be hard to act appropriately (which she said was an issue for her). I know my daughter, who is on the spectrum, hates to go to things like that because she doesn't understand why everyone acts the way they do and it gives her a lot of anxiety trying to figure out the appropriate behaviors and responses. I'm guessing that is why she didn't actually go to the graveside service either.

LOVED, LOVED, LOVED drunk AltLivia and Walter. They were so comfortable together!

#106

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 9:57 PM

Such a busy weekend that I only finally was able to watch the ep! Overall, I quite enjoyed it!

Ugh. I did not like Walter so cheerfully referring to Peter as "my son". It just seemed so off. And fanservice-y?....


Maybe I'm just a softy, but I didn't have that problem. He'd said previously that this Peter was going to be the closest he'd get to being able to connect with his son. I don't really see it as much different than people starting to call a step-mom "mom", or the like. I was was touched by it.

General thoughts:

  • I thought it was really lovely of Olivia to have such nice things to say in regards to Faux (about losing AltLincoln) and makes me wonder just how she views everything that happened before, since it happened, yet didn't happen...but happened. Whatever, you guys get it.
  • Okay, I'm going to say something that might be shocking(it certainly is for me, but this episode did something that all previous episodes have been unable to do: it got me to actually like Faux. This is an entirely new feeling for me. I'm still note entirely sure how to feel about being charmed by her, by feeling genuinely sorry for her, and essentially just making me want to ruffle her hair and telling her it'll all be okay (as I did when she was in the kitchen with Walter). I've always kind of felt like she posturing, that she was over-the-top cocky, that her whole personality was a put-on. In this episode? She actually seemed like a person, rather than a caricature.
    Also, loved that Walter cooked for her and that, at their parting, she hugged him. She's largely grown up in a world that's been devastated by Walter's actions, so it's quite something, how she treats him now.
  • Completely loved the interaction between the Astrids, but kind of wondered why blue Astrid didn't bring her a nicer looking thing of coffee. I guess if you haven't had it in awhile any coffee is good coffee, but it looked rather generic. Absurd thoughts like this run through my head and I can't help it!
  • Domesticated badgers? Wha...? I don't even....
  • Costume question: Faux was wearing a short pea-coat like jacket and jeans (I think)...has she ever worn a combination like that? Used to seeing her in cargo-pant/jacket-like attire that it jumped out at me.
  • Nina falling for Faux's "trick" required my suspension of disbelief. It is the oldest cop trick in the book! Maybe they don't have cop/lawyer shows OverThere?

Er, yeah, I had other thoughts, but they're rather silly and random (like: "Aww Olivia looks adorable in rain boots at the scene"). Quite looking forward to next week!


ETA:

I totally understand that altLinc's stepmom might have been there and said the line about "parents should not bury their children". I know some people who are closer to stepparents than their real parents. Especially if she had been around a while, she may consider herself just as much a parent as his dad.


Agreed. I had absolutely no trouble with the thought it was his step mom and that she'd be equally as devastated. I understand why people might have an issue with it, if it signals poor continuity between adjoining eps, but at least this is one that can be explained away rather neatly.

Edited by Ageha, Apr 15, 2012 @ 10:01 PM.


#107

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Posted Apr 15, 2012 @ 10:15 PM

Agreed. I had absolutely no trouble with the thought it was his step mom and that she'd be equally as devastated. I understand why people might have an issue with it, if it signals poor continuity between adjoining eps, but at least this is one that can be explained away rather neatly.


It would also account for ourLincoln not being too overwhelmed seeing his parents over there - he might not have recognised her.

Okay, I'm going to say something that might be shocking(it certainly is for me, but this episode did something that all previous episodes have been unable to do: it got me to actually like Faux. This is an entirely new feeling for me.


*pets* I know how you feel, I had my first experience of that when the other Alt Olivia gave birth to the Lil peanut but drunk she was even more adorable. She's way closer to OurOlivia than the other AltOlivia on the spectrum of likeability.

DRJ wants to be God, creating a new world from the rubble of the two collapsed universes, and populating it with his, "children," be they porcubats or whatever.


I always thought of DRJ as being super intelligent but I have to say, I've lost respect for him having now seen his idea of an improvement on the human race. Really, porcubats? Oliva and Peter clones would be much better.

#108

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:57 AM

A bit more on Lincoln's reaction to his alt-parents (or just his dad if it was a stepmom he didn't know). It kind of reminds me of Olivia's reaction to seeing alt-Charlie in "Over There". It's gotta be a weird feeling, because really it's not the person you knew. I have no idea how I'd react in that situation. I found Lincoln sort of gritting his teeth and just staring ahead into the middle distance believable.

#109

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 7:42 AM

Faux was never evil. She was always a bit more shallow than Olivia, and she did the things she did while Over Here because she was out of her depth.

The fascinating thing about what Fringe has done with Season 3 and then Season 4 is that most shows would have introduced an alternate universe and cast of characters as clear baddies, but they didn't do that. However, they also frontloaded the situation with high stress - a brewing war - and turned up the volume on that to the point where the situation by the end of Season 3 was the worst possible you could think of.

Then in Season 4, the high-stress situation was removed, and we've gotten to know the characters we were ambivalent about in a new way, where we like them as people. We want the two worlds to get along because we already know how bad it can get. This makes the establishment of peace compelling.

#110

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 8:17 AM

Faux was never evil. She was always a bit more shallow than Olivia, and she did the things she did while Over Here because she was out of her depth.


Not evil, but she made some very very poor choices for which I found it impossible to like or be interested in her. While I wouldn't have categorized her as "evil", I never felt that doing things because she was out of her depth absolved her of her transgressions or made her particularly sympathetic. Admittedly, part of my overall problem with her was the way Olivia seemed to be getting cast in a negative light once she strutted onto screen. As she's one of my favorite tv characters ever, that played a hefty role in affecting my perception of Faux. I guess I can hold a grudge and was never swayed by her until this episode. I just never felt anything for her beyond intense dislike (that's about as charitable as I could've been). I completely understand why she was doing the things that she did and appreciated that there were significant and compelling reasons behind her actions, but three dimensional or not, I don't feel guilty for not warming to her any sooner.

#111

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 8:40 AM

I've always found Faux interesting because she's a nice change from our ever-serious Olivia, but I genuinely enjoyed her in this episode. And I've always liked her hair. My favorite style for Olivia has always been her blonde hair with Faux's bangs. Sigh, I wish I looked as good with those bangs.

#112

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 8:48 AM

If this is somehow what happens as Jones has said, in some way (see above), it will likely be that those who have no doppelgangers (like Jones) will remain unscathed. Which sets the stage for a DRJ vs. PB deathmatch!

beedub, I like the way you think. Maybe DRJ's lack of a double (that we know of) is his reason to believe he'd be unscathed by the merge. I do agree that he probably wants to be the new God of a new united universe but I still don't quite understand why he thinks that tinkering with the machine will leave him unaffected. What sets him apart? Does he have a device? A physiological difference? And, by the way, I say "unaffected" but we also don't know what that effect will be, what the majority of the people will experience, what DRJ wants to do to them (apart from turning the surviving humans to porcubats).

Hell, maybe DRJ will turn himself into a porcubat too and after the merge those creatures are the only ones who survive. I would be totally satisfied with that explanation, by the way. That's the level of detail I'd like, nothing too extreme but something that could justify certain events. This season has been pretty vague with the "science" and I'm getting antsy. Like, we're practically getting Ghost Whisperer-style explanations, "fate" and "special baby" and "true love". Let the porcubats be a beacon of sci-fi awesomeness.

Nina falling for Faux's "trick" required my suspension of disbelief. It is the oldest cop trick in the book! Maybe they don't have cop/lawyer shows OverThere?

Seriously. Even if it wasn't a huge cliche, I'd still expect better from Nina who's always totally secretive.

Ugh. I did not like Walter so cheerfully referring to Peter as "my son". It just seemed so off. And fanservice-y?....

Maybe I'm just a softy, but I didn't have that problem. He'd said previously that this Peter was going to be the closest he'd get to being able to connect with his son. I don't really see it as much different than people starting to call a step-mom "mom", or the like. I was was touched by it.

I don't know, the fact is that in the Blue universe Peter also wasn't Walter's biological son (or, well, DNA-wise he was, but you know what I mean) but Walter raised him since he was a child so "son" was true. But Amber Walter? Who met Peter, like, a month ago? And whose son is dead? And has been dead for over 2 decades? With no replacement? I liked that Amber Walter was distant at first and I also think that it's natural that he would warm up to Peter; in fact, the other week, when he gave him all the presents he had been "getting" for his own Peter, I thought that was sweet, you could see Peter's presence was healing Walter. That level of warmth/comfort/bonding was beautiful. But "son"? I think it's a little too soon for that. Unless it's one of those "Blue emotions are bleeding into the Amber verse" things. Which is too mushy for me to appreciate, frankly.

I just miss Blue Walter. And I don't know why Peter doesn't miss him too. If I suddenly found myself with a different version of my parents who had never met me I'd be pretty devastated, even if they were nice to me/learned to love me. It's not the same. If 'son' was a way for the writers to tell the audience "look, it's fine, they all love each other again" it kind of had the opposite effect on me.

Edited by Princess Lucky, Apr 16, 2012 @ 8:50 AM.


#113

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 9:22 AM

I don't know, the fact is that in the Blue universe Peter also wasn't Walter's biological son (or, well, DNA-wise he was, but you know what I mean) but Walter raised him since he was a child so "son" was true. But Amber Walter? Who met Peter, like, a month ago? And whose son is dead? And has been dead for over 2 decades? With no replacement?


Walter has already been through this struggle during the season. He shunned Peter, wouldn't help him, and made it clear he had mourned for his son a lot. (Also, it's been way more than a month...)

Yes, this Walter has warmed up to this Peter and in his words, "You're not my real son, but you're the closest I'm going to get."

I like seeing characters be nice to each other, after the requisite amount of angst. I don't think unrelieved angstyness and hostility makes for high drama.

I miss Blue Walter too, but since the premise of this show is that there are multiple selves that probably all coexist at the same time, I'll just say, "You're not my Walter, but you're the closest I'm going to get."

#114

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 9:27 AM

Kind of the whole point is, this is what Walter would be like without Peter in his life. And naturally, Walter would start resembling his BlueWalter self. They had the requisite period of angst, I don't need to see more. In show, it's been three months, after all.

#115

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:27 PM

in fact, the other week, when he gave him all the presents he had been "getting" for his own Peter, I thought that was sweet, you could see Peter's presence was healing Walter. That level of warmth/comfort/bonding was beautiful. But "son"? I think it's a little too soon for that.

Actually, neither gesture rang true to me, when a just a week earlier Peter was still considered a Punishment From God. I guess the writers thought Walter's irrational hostility had lasted long enough (or rather, John and Josh had to convince them to reintroduce the familiar dynamic, according to John Noble) and they didn't bother writing a more organic development so late in the season. However, as unbelievable as Walter's behavior has been, I'll take what I can get, he stopped being a massive jerk to Peter and that's a huge relief.

I did find the "son and girlfriend" scene funny, though. Walter was acting all giddy and Peter looked very happy, indeed, but Olivia... she looked her usual miserable and distant self, she cracked a half-hearted smile at Walter and that was it. I think only one of them is enjoying the relationship.

#116

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:48 PM

Sometimes I find it hard to believe we're watching the same program, we have such different interpretations of things. But you're watching, so glad to have you!

Edited by CorwinOfAmber, Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:49 PM.


#117

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:51 PM

Kind of the whole point is, this is what Walter would be like without Peter in his life. And naturally, Walter would start resembling his BlueWalter self. They had the requisite period of angst, I don't need to see more. In show, it's been three months, after all.

Why naturally? Just because Peter --who is a complete stranger in the Amber timeline-- materialized? I don't think it's natural at all. I guess it's an issue I have with the writing; AmberWalter shouldn't start acting like BluWalter just because he's missed. Like they couldn't think of a better solution to erasing the Blue timeline.

Re: RedLincoln: I don't know if it matters much to show canon, but the end credits list the characters as "Alt Lincoln's Father" and "Alt Lincoln's Mother". So it may be a continuity gaffe.

#118

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:53 PM

I did find the "son and girlfriend" scene funny, though. Walter was acting all giddy and Peter looked very happy, indeed, but Olivia... she looked her usual miserable and distant self, she cracked a half-hearted smile at Walter and that was it. I think only one of them is enjoying the relationship.


I don't know, if I were Olivia I might feel a little sheepish at Walter's enthusiasm. Like, "Okay, Walter, we get it, you're happy about it, enough." And maybe I'm just reading into it, but even though neither of his comments was a direct reference to their sex life, it could definitely come across that way, and who wants an older father-type figure to go on about that sort of thing? Whatever the case, I don't think she looked miserable or distant, just like "Oh good grief."

Anyway, I did want to ask if you think this is track they're actually taking, though I don't agree, to what end do you think this is the case? Why might the writers/TPTB do that?

Edited by Ageha, Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:53 PM.


#119

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 1:54 PM

Why naturally? Just because Peter --who is a complete stranger in the Amber timeline-- materialized? I don't think it's natural at all.


The premise of the season has been that these characters have been different because Peter has not been in their lives. I.e., Peter the person, Peter and his personality, Peter and his personal influence on them. Not just because of causality. So, if Peter is on the scene, and Walter accepts him and opens up to his influence, the premise is that Walter would start behaving like Blue Walter (ie Peter-influenced Walter) again.

It isn't causality doing it, in other words. It's Peter's presence in the present that smooths out Walter's rough edges, just like it did during Seasons 1-3.

#120

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Posted Apr 16, 2012 @ 2:02 PM

Why naturally? Just because Peter --who is a complete stranger in the Amber timeline-- materialized? I don't think it's natural at all.


I would consider it a natural progression, since the difference between "BlueWalter" and "AmberWalter" is simply the absence of Peter in his life. I suppose you can quibble about how long the progression takes, but it's not going to take three years, or fifteen because there is zero resistance from Peter this time.

I think it comes down to what you think is actually happening. I don't actually like the terms "AmberWalter" vs "BlueWalter" anymore, because I think it perpetuates a false notion. There is just Walter. Everything that happened previously, happened. Peter was in his life, but was removed retroactively. (Even that is a bad description of what happened) There is only one timeline, which was partly written over, but traces of Peter remained.

ETA: What MM said :)

Part of the problem is that we have poor terminolgy for whats going on.

Edited by CorwinOfAmber, Apr 16, 2012 @ 2:04 PM.