Fringe Boldly Goes...

Leave it to Fringe to explore the final frontier.

As many of you Fringe fans recall when Walter Bishop made his presentation to the joint Fringe Divisions (ep. Worlds Apart) he admitted that his recognition of Jones' gambit came to him in a dream.  Now dreams have often been a plot device or theme throughout the history of Fringe.  So to the viewing audience this wasn't much of a surprise.  However the Fringe players there were a bit skeptical.

It was a nice moment early on in the episode because it afforded Walternate an opportunity to back his doppelganger and illustrate the cooperation between the two sides.   But it made me think of where Walter truly got his inspiration.  

My thoughts went back to "Letters of Transit" when there was that moment of recognition between Walter and Etta.  Walter stammered something like, "You" as if there was something beyond the simple recognition of a loved one.  It seemed a bit strange to me, as if Walter recognized something different other than his titular granddaughter.

Etta noticed something also.  But hers was more of the familial variety.  What I am thinking is that Walter had made some sort of post hypnotic or subconscious suggestion to Etta at the tender age of Four before he submitted himself and his team to an Amber preservation.  This would explain her obsession with finding the Fringe team that went beyond the simple search for artifacts from that earlier era.  Even Simon thought she was crazy for pursuing her chase.  You could explain her drive with the loss of her mother and the unresolved disappearance of her father and the rest of the Fringe team.  But Walters reaction goes beyond that and perhaps Etta realized that too with this epiphany.

Now lets go back to Walters dream and his solution to Jones' plans.  If Walter was clever enough in the past to make a suggestion to Etta that would prove useful in the future.  Why wouldn't he do the same in the future to benefit the past?  The Walter of 2025 (with brain intact) knew his plan was successful otherwise he would still be trapped in amber.  Also, why put yourself in amber unless you had an exit plan.  He said as much to Etta and Simon as they escaped Massive Dynamic.

Simply put, what I am saying is Walter didn't just have a dream about Jones' plan he may have had a visit from his future self and made the suggestion in person!  Whether he used hypnosis, dream suggestion, or even LSD, I think Walter tipped himself off somehow that led to Walters solution in the present.

We've seen this device before when Spock made a similar suggestion to Dr. McCoy in the movie, "The Wrath of Khan".  It eventually led to Spock's resurrection later on in that series of movies.  In Fringe's case, Walter makes a suggestion to Etta that eventually frees him from the amber much as Spock was freed from stasis on the Genesis planet.  

Isn't it amazing that we see the same actor that portrayed Spock in those movies resurrected again as William Bell seemingly back from the dead.  I don't think it is a coincidence.  We all know JJ Abrams is involved wit the new Star Trek movie series, why not borrow that trope and apply it to Fringe.  And why not use it in reverse so Walter could make a suggestion to himself in the past.  I think it is pretty clever and it works really well.  It also wraps the Fringe and Star Trek families tightly together especially in the wake of so many Star Wars references in the episode before.

That rivalry will never die.

So what do you think?  Did Walter plant the seed in Etta's subconscious and did he use it on his own self in reverse fashion from the future?

It's Fringe, imagine the impossibilities!


  1. Hi. I actually thought the same thing when Walter said "You." To me it was more than mere family recognition it seemed. It didn't occur to me about the dream Walter mentions in "Worlds Apart" as a connection to the future "Letters in Transit." I didn't catch the "exit strategy" reference previously, yet now that you mention it; it makes perfect sense. No way Walter would amber himself without a plan. So, yes, I think he did do something where Etta was obsessed. Interesting perspective. And, sorry, I don't catch the Star Trek references as I am not fan (pls don't stone me). Outside of Star Wars, The Matrix and now Fringe, I am not a sci-fan really at all (sorry).

    I am curious, how much of Season 5 do you think will be current time with a build up to the possible "future" we saw in "Letters of Transit"? Or, do you think perhaps that future will be changed and not occur now? Just curious. ~Kristin (a/k/a serenityinall on Twitter)

  2. Don't be sorry Kristen, we'll make a sci-fi convert out of you yet. I'm glad we are of like mind, I hope to see this developed further. If its true that is!

    As for the future and season 5; I hope they start with the events of 2015. Walter said whatever happened to September was, (pause) "unexpected". Whatever that means. But at least it means he doesn't die at the end of this season. They only have 13 episodes to work with next season so I would imagine they only have two or three to deal with the events of 2015 and then amber themselves until the Etta time line appears. Hopefully we'll see a flashback or two which would include Walter visiting his own self "in a dream" and helping defeat Jones. Ugh, that's a lot to deal with.

    Whatever they do I'm sure it will be a fun trip. Thanks for the response Kristen its always good to hear a new voice.

    1. Thanks Dave. Not sure I'll even be a sci-fi convert. Perhaps though... lol

      I actually came across you first via The Fringe Podcast. Anyway, I was reading down some of your older blogs and found it sort of interesting as I agree with a lot of it. I actually recently also joined Tumblr (I follow you there too... feel stalked yet? ha ha) and tho quite wordy, you may (or may not) think it a bit interesting to read my latest post which is mainly about Fringe, sci-fi and me. lol I happen to mention. I'm the one that asked you about how to put the GetGlue checkins on Tumblr. Thanks for that by the way.

  3. Hi Kristin, (see, I'm spelling your name correctly now)I'm very grateful to Clint and Darrell at the Fringe podcast for all the support they've shown me. One of the best things about following Fringe is the community of fans that has formed around it. I'm very happy to be a part of it.

    Oh yes, the tumblr question, I thought your name was familiar! I'll have to look up your post, thanks. I'm glad you were able to look through a few of my posts. I've been pretty active lately as Fringe leaves a lot to talk about.

    Happy stalking!

  4. OK go read EW's Doc Jenson's recap for Brave New World Part 1. The last page made me think you two have had a mind meld!

    1. Forgot to sign off - Lynne (duckyislost)


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