'Fringe' Recap: Countdown to Strange Days
'Fringe' Recap: Countdown to Strange Days
Jilliane Johnson
Jilliane Johnson
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
Fringe fans have much to celebrate this week. Not only is it time for an all-new episode, counting down to the end of the series' fourth season, but Fox has just announced a fifth and final season, as you may have seen. Let us not jump too far ahead, though. We still have much ground to cover in the coming weeks.

Last week, we traveled ahead to the year 2036 with Walter Bishop. He assisted the future Fringe Division in rescuing son Peter and Astrid from amber after all those years. Along with Peter's daughter Etta, the team set out to win a war between Natives and Loyalists of the Observers new rule. Put all of that on the back burner for now because tonight we return to the present. The Fringe team of both worlds will join together in order to investigate new happenings linked to the Cortexiphan experiments.

Walter eyes the machine located on the bridge when Peter catches his attention. With a twist of the tie, he leads him to the meeting room of the alternate universe. The table is filled with members of both teams as Walter explains what seems to be the plan of David Robert Jones: "the big bang." He expresses that his theories stem from a dream he had.

In Sydney, Australia, a woman stands under a bridge and checks her watch, in Beijing, China, a man makes his way through alleys then glances at the ticking time, a woman rushes to a river surrounded by mountains as her stopwatch counts down, Manhattan, New York, finds a man leaving a taxi before looking at his watch. All four of these individuals stop dead in their tracks and close their eyes simultaneously. As the veins in their foreheads grow visible, it seems as though earthquakes strike around them.

The Westfield incident seems to stand as a "test run," if you will, to what David Robert Jones is planning to do next. Walter struggles to make the joined team understand that Jones is looking to destroy both worlds while leaving behind one area as a "safe zone." Alternate Astrid alerts her team of the earthquakes.

Back in the lab, Walter uses an ice-breaker game to demonstrate the earthquakes. Disrupting the frequencies in both worlds at the same time and often enough, soon the barriers will collapse.

So a guy walking into Fringe Division by the name of Nick Lane meets with Lincoln Lee on the alternate side and informs him that he witnessed the earthquakes, yet from our side of the bridge. "In his vision, he says there were no Twin Towers," says Lincoln as he relays the information to Olivia. In front of a laptop screen with Walter, Peter and Astrid, Olivia then identifies the Australian woman as Sally Clark. From this, she concludes that Cortexiphan is to be blamed.

Here's the breakdown as told by Walter. The Cortexiphan subjects are drawing on the frequencies of their alternates, therefore merging the worlds together and eventually leading to the collapse of both. Peter suggests they "shut down the bridge." Olivia would rather just find Jones and "stop the next attack." She has an idea!

Fauxlivia travels to our side with Nick Lane so that Walter can perform some tests on the poor, confused guy. Fauxlivia strikes up conversation with Olivia, talking about how she hasn't "seen rain in over 20 years." If this bridge closes, she can forget rain altogether. Walter is ready and Olivia is hooked up to the same contraption as Nick. She's able to see through his eyes, so to speak, and locate their version of Nick. Peter and Lincoln rush out to Salem, Massachusetts to Salem Bay University. They grab our Nick before his veins begin to dance on his forehead, but activity still pops up across Astrid's map.

Our Nick Lane now sits in custody, handcuffed to a chair. Olivia, Peter and Walter stand before Broyles in his office. They have Nick's timer in hand. "How many more quakes," asks Broyles to which Walter answers, "I'm surprised it hasn't happened already." Broyles announces that Washington has called in an inquiry about cutting off the machine. Olivia quickly volunteers to speak to her childhood associate, Nick.

He calls her "Olive" as she asks questions about Jones. He won't fork over any details about Jones' location, but he does seem pretty excited about he and Olivia being on the same side. The war they were once training for, "it's happening." He's obviously confused by believing Jones is helping him. Olivia quickly sets things straight and asks the now teary-eyed offender again of his boss' location.

Peter is tinkering with the the timer while Lincoln leans over and eventually assumes, "you're going to stay here." Peter replies, "I've come to the decision that home is where the heart is." Just then, the timer begins counting down again.

Olivia returns to Nick and insists that he cough up some information before everyone he loves "will cease to exist." This spawns a story of how he was such a coward and how Jones explains his feelings caused his sister to slit her wrists. "That is what Walter Bishop and Massive Dynamics did to me!" he says. Olivia tries again to make him see clearly.

Nick looks to be helping out. He recalls meeting Jones at a warehouse once. He leads the FBI to the location where the agents infiltrate. Nick remains in the car with an officer, visibly nervous. His inadequate feelings and voicing that he should have died now seems to be rubbing off on the officer. When Peter and Olivia find nothing inside, they rush back to the car and find only the officer inside. Nick vanishes amongst a crowd of people on the street.

The teams sit in the meeting room again, watching the time tick down. They're all running out of options and no one can think of anything. A room full of exceptional minds and not one soul can come up with any alternate solutions! "I'm afraid we have to close the bridge," says Walter. Say it ain't so!

Peter locks his arm in place on the control dock as Walter pushes all the right buttons. It shouldn't take long for the power to reach a certain point to where they can shut it down. Peter runs off to tell the others, leaving both Walters alone. Walternate names off the commendable qualities of Peter, causing Walter to become emotional and leave the room. His alternate follows him into the hallway and they sit side by side. Walter is scared Peter will vanish when the bridge closes. Walternate tries to encourage him by saying they might go on after the war for the betterment of their people.

"Strange days," Peter says to Lincoln. With a glance over at Fauxlivia, Lincoln recalls Peter's earlier statement about "home is where the heart is." "I think I found mine," he says. Olivia encourages Fauxlivia to "keep looking up." Lincoln stands with his new family. Each of the members look across at the opposite team with a nod of goodbye. "That's it. It's time," Walter says and hits the button. Broyles, Astrid, Olivia and Peter remain with Walter. Choked up, he joins his son and says," I think I shall miss them more than I imagined." Oh, sadness! What's going to happen now?!

The battle has just begun! The Fringe season 4 finale will begin next Friday as Walter faces his past when people begin to spontaneously combust. You surely don't want to miss out on the last two episodes! Tune in to Fox and head back here to BuddyTV to comment on the episodes!

Jilliane Johnson
Contributing Writer

(Image courtesy of FOX)