Fringe Round Table: "A Better Human Being"
Fringe viewers said hello to Alt-Nina Sharp on "A Better Human Being."
What did our Round Table team of Sean McKenna, Carissa Pavlica and Nick Shere say about the most recent episode of this Fox drama? Find out below and then chime in with your own take...
What was your favorite scene from the episode?
Sean: Going back to the storage containers. I recognized the callback to the pilot episode immediately. It's always fun when you get those little reminders of a show's past moments.
Nick: The conversation between Astrid and the young man who had been institutionalized, in which she helps him understand what it's like to be alone inside one's head -- to be normal.
Carissa: In true girly girlishness the gooey gushy lovey dovey truck scene at the gas station made me tingle. I've waited so long for them to really feel for each other, and at that place in time it seemed they felt more for each other than at any other time in the series.
Which Nina do you think is ours, and when do you think the "switch" took place?
Sean: There's so many options. Is one of them real, the alternate version, another version, a shapeshifter? I don't think the "real" Nina is captured with Olivia. I've got a feeling that she's been put there to help make Olivia do something. What? No idea, but let's just say that trusting any Nina is a bad idea.
Nick: I have no freaking clue. The way the end of the episode was presented seems to telegraph a meta-twist, but it's hard to say what that might be. Maybe neither Nina is ours?
Carissa: I think our Nina is the captured one, and the took her about four episodes ago. I do not, however, think that necessarily means that she is a good guy. Maybe she figured out they had planned for Olivia and her love for her changed her mind, putting her on the outside.
Do you think Walter is experiencing his on memories on a smaller scale than Olivia?
Sean: Perhaps, but wouldn't that mean that everyone else is as well? Is it because Olivia has the romantic and personal connection to Peter that makes her remember?
Nick: He doesn't seem to be. Walter seems to be firmly planted -- as firmly as he ever is, anyway -- in this timeline. He and Olivia both share a connection to Peter, since they both sensed him at the beginning off the season, but I don't think alter's connection comes with any information attached. Which is why it's so hard for him -- he knows he is closely related to Peter, but he isn't equipped to make sense of that relationship.
Carissa: I do. The cortexiphan is greatly accelerating what Olivia is experiencing, but Walter is feeling things, as well. There were the ones who knew about him arriving. Other people may be in similar situations, but there was only one individual ERASED from the universes, and that was Peter. His erasure would cause the most acute damage to those closest to him, while the rest of the world would fall in more naturally.
What did you expect to happen at the storage facility?
Sean: I almost expected John Scott (back from Season 1) to appear out of nowhere and/or the storage container to blow up.
Nick: I expected a giant swarm of young pasty dudes to boil up out of all the storage units. I am both disappointed and relieved that isn't what happened.
Carissa: Exact same answer as Sean. Right around the corner would be John. Or, at the very least when she unlocked the locker it would explode putting her in the same situation that John ended up in then.
What was David Robert Jones hoping to achieve by giving Olivia Cortexiphan?
Sean: Probably some time jumping or universe jumping ability that Olivia hold deep down inside. Or simply something that gives him world domination. You know, the usual bad guy stuff.
Nick: The first time around, his interest in Olivia seemed to be in line with ZFT: he viewed her as a recruit in the war between universes. However, the two universes have now achieved what seems to be a sustainable detente. So, does he need her ready to fight a different war?
Carissa: I wonder if he even knows. Just to use her as a guinea pig and experiment on her in as many ways as possible to see what she might be capable of doing.
Anything else you want to share?
Sean: I love how Lincoln Lee has been able to almost effortless seem like a natural member of the Fringe team despite not being an original charter member. I also am enjoying the feeling that everything seems to be coming to a point and that we aren't being strung along. I can't wait to find out the truth about the "timeline," Olivia's memories, Peter, and where everything goes from there.
Nick: In the Cortexiphan taste-off scene, Lincoln seemed to be acting differently than usual. His glares at Nina seemed extra-significant. Is this just because Lincoln is worried about Olivia and wisely distrustful of Nina, or is there more going on there?
Carissa: I'm both excited and scared at the possibility of receiving answers. Sean is right, everything is coming together and it seems so smooth that it makes what lies ahead even more discomforting.