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October 30, 2014

Fringe: Dream Logic

by Jane Boursaw, posted Oct 16th 2009 3:52AM
Fringe - Dream Logic
(S02E05) "Whether you admit it or not, your life is something of a nightmare." - Bowling Alley Guy to Olivia


For a minute there, I thought maybe we were in a True Blood crossover with the horned guy in the first few minutes of this episode. But no, it was the usual twisty-turny Fringe-isms involving mind control, computer chips and dream states.

And it appears that something many of us assumed had happened to Peter actually did happen -- though with this show, you can never be sure until it all plays out. It wouldn't surprise me if it's something completely different from what I'm assuming it is. All this, and Mysterious Bowling Alley Guy after the jump ...

Let's talk about Mysterious Bowling Alley Guy. So as part of Olivia's rehab, he has her collect business cards from people wearing red, and then pick letters from the cards and play word-jumble and voila! She gets a message she's been needing. In this case, "You're gonna be fine," which is what Charlie told her the first time they met and she was a scared newbie.

So is Bowling Alley Guy a magician? Super intuitive mind reader? Clairvoyant person from the other universe who can tap into Charlie from beyond the grave? Freelance contractor for Massive Dynamic? Once again, back to Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid: Who IS this guy?!

And it occurred to me that the Charlie that Olivia visited at the cemetery isn't really Charlie. It's the shapeshifter, right? Unless they cremated the body or something. Who knows, that thing could possibly rise up at some point.

The whole storyline with the creepy dual-personality doc and the mind-control-dreams was good, though I sort of knew the doc must be involved from the beginning. I also wonder how it fits in with the alternate universe. Maybe just the fact that it's weird and Massive Dynamic has been tracking him for a while.

And speaking of Massive Dynamic, when did they become the good guys? Now it seems like they're sort of partnering with the Fringe team, but when the show first started, they seemed more nefarious. I'm not convinced they're good guys, especially with William Bell out there in the ether doing who knows what.

We're learning a little more about Peter's childhood as this season moves along. Many of us have speculated that perhaps the Peter from this universe died, and Walter crossed over and stole the other Peter and brought him back (or vice versa - mindfreak). Tonight seemed to confirm that theory, as the ending scene had Peter flashing back (via nightmare and talking in his sleep) to a childhood experience, where it appeared that Walter may have taken him.

But didn't it seem weird that Peter was sort of yanked out of bed? Walter is many eccentric things, but I would think he'd be gentle if he was taking the alternate Peter from his bed to bring back to this universe, don't you think? Maybe Peter was recalling the exact moment when he and Walter traveled from one universe to the other -- and that can be a brain-rattling experience, as Olivia knows.

Peter also told Olivia that because of his childhood nightmares, Walter had Peter say a mantra to condition himself not to remember his dreams. As a result, Peter doesn't remember any dreams from age 8 to 19 (and the boy in Peter's nightmare appeared to be about eight years old). So in addition to stealing Peter, maybe Walter was experimenting on him, either so he wouldn't remember things from the alternate universe (in reality or in his dreams), or maybe he was doing things to Peter, as he and William Bell did with the other children, including Olivia. Or maybe Peter died during one of those experiments, and that's when Walter stole the other Peter.

Just jumping ahead, I can imagine that if and when Peter figures all of this out, it's going to cause a major rift between him and Walter (and Walter knows this, because he seems anxious and guilt-ridden whenever it comes up). Maybe Peter will even try to cross over and find his parents from the other universe. Tell us your theories in the comments below.

Other Fringe-isms:

  • Walter promising to wear his shorts to bed, in case Peter brings home "a young lady" during the night.
  • Walter continuing to call Astrid Astrix.
  • Walter being giddy over Astrid's housewarming gift of Italian Ciabatta bread
  • Walter experimenting with the chip on the FBI guy (extreme?).
  • Walter being afraid in Seattle, because it reminds him of the mental hospital, and asking Peter if he can return home
  • Peter telling the FBI guy that it's best if Walter doesn't drink, since he usually has a half-dozen psychotropic drugs in his system. Oh, and he has things in his backpack to occupy him on the trip home.
  • "Don't be such a grinch. I told you science should be fun." - Walter to Astrid

[Watch episodes and clips of Fringe and other shows at SlashControl.]

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18 Comments

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wahaza extra

What if, the Earth-2 Walter is the one who try to cross over to take Peter back, and he's the one who been sending all this shape shifter; Would be awesome to have a scene where the good and the evil Walter;

October 27 2009 at 9:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
cress d

I think the bald-headed guy took alternate universe Peter. He seems to have a special relationship w/ Walter.

October 22 2009 at 1:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
GerryofNorVA

Not noted, but important, is that major league baseball is pre-empting Fringe until its return in November. I wonder if it's playing in the alternate dimension ?! (LOL)

October 18 2009 at 12:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
The1337

I think this episode was a decent standalone. The dream story was straightforward, but showcased the Fringe science we love to see. More interesting was Olivia's new guru. He seems benign now, but in the Abrams world, that means trouble. My theory is that he's working for Massive Dynamic to control Olivia. Full review of the episode.

http://th3tvobsessed.blogspot.com/2009/10/review-fringe-season-2-episode-5-dream.html

October 16 2009 at 9:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
BugKiller

I can't believe y'all missed this, because it was the first thing I noticed!

THE POSTER OF THE CHALLENGER SPACE SHUTTLE IN YOUNG PETER'S BEDROOM!

This PROVES that Peter is from Earth-2.

How?

It was a picture of Challenger's 11th Mission in 1984.

CHALLENGER BLEW UP DURING IT'S 10th MISSION IN 1986 IN EARTH-1!!!

This jibes with what Walter said: Earth-2 is about a decade or two ahead of us in terms of technology. It appears as if Earth-2 started their shuttle program earlier than ours, sometime in the 70's, because KENNEDY NEVER DIED on Earth-2, so they probably landed on the moon earlier, too.

So this makes sense as to why they on Earth-2 have better tech: the biggest tech leaps happened because of the Space Program, so if Kennedy never dies, Johnson is probably President for 2 terms, which means no Nixon to kill Apollo.

IT ALL MAKES SENSE NOW!!!

October 16 2009 at 7:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to BugKiller's comment
GerryofNorVA

That's a really good catch! I dwelled on that poster, too, but didn't make the historical link dammit. It further confirms what we already know about Peter's being from the other dimension.

October 18 2009 at 12:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Eldritch

"But didn't it seem weird that Peter was sort of yanked out of bed? Walter is many eccentric things, but I would think he'd be gentle if he was taking the alternate Peter from his bed to bring back to this universe, don't you think?"


I thought the scene was trying to say that something horrible happened in Peter's room which wasn't shown when Walter awoke him. I find myself frequently wondering what Walter2 has been doing. He lost his son.

Could Walter2 have walked in on Walter1 when he was stealing Peter2. Was there a fight and a murder? something that Peter would have nightmares over?

October 16 2009 at 4:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Eldritch's comment
mrkorb

I think the whole being grabbed out of bed by Walter1 and sucked into World1 is what really freaked out poor young Peter2. Remember that Bell said something to Olivia about needing time to get adjusted to the other side? We saw how jarring it was for her at first with the time skips. More than likely Peter2's nightmares had to do with his body and mind adjusting to life in World1.

October 16 2009 at 8:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Eldritch

So is Bowling Alley Guy a magician? Super intuitive mind reader? Clairvoyant person from the other universe who can tap into Charlie from beyond the grave?

I really hate it when they start combining science fiction with fantasy. Magic and science live in different genres. Next thing you know Fringe will have angels and people coming back from the dead, deciphering the meaning of musical notes, and who knows, maybe even green unicorns as on going characters.

In a recent episode, that female FBI agent implied there's be a religious connection when she pulled up the New Testament on her computer. It's really hard to mix theology and science fiction and come out with a decent story.

I'm afraid the writers are trying to mix too many things to make their stories as weird as possible.

October 16 2009 at 4:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Key Rick

What happened to the femaie agent from the first episode this season? Did I miss something? I thought she might be important so I can't shake why they introduced her. Surely she wasn't just a one-episode place holder for Olivia? Also, I keep looking for The Watcher with no luck since that first episode. Anybody else?

October 16 2009 at 3:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Key Rick's comment
Eldritch

Also, I keep looking for The Watcher with no luck since that first episode. Anybody else?

In another blog, I read someone had spotted him on the stairs at the sleep clinic. I spotted him 26:36 into the show. He's way in the back just going down the stairs. He's too far away to distinguish his face, but his suit, hat, and briefcase ID him.

October 16 2009 at 4:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Anne T

In season 1, Walter talked about Peter getting really sick and how he worked to find a cure, even trying to create a portal to go back in time and find a scientist who had cured the disease. Eventually he tells Peter that he just got better, but my thinking was probably that he died then rather than in the lake accident where the watcher rescued Peter and Walter.

October 16 2009 at 1:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Anne T's comment
Eldritch

In season 1, Walter talked about Peter getting really sick and how he worked to find a cure, even trying to create a portal to go back in time and find a scientist who had cured the disease.

You're right. I remember that story too. The criminal in the German prison stole and then used some machine of Walter's to escape. Walter had invented the machine to help him find the scientist to cure the disease.

Well, it'll be interesting to see how the story plays out.

October 16 2009 at 3:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
bruce

In the previous episode where Walter had the woman on drugs to try to identify the shape-shifter from the alternate universe, she said she could identify those from the other universe because she'd see a brightness around them. At the end of the episode, when Walter gets into the car to drive home with her (he'd take the bus back home), Peter is closing the car door and the lady (I forget her name) looks at Peter and we see from her view that there is a bright light around him. She is quiet and looks at him oddly for a few moments and Peter asks what's wrong and she says nothing, must be the drugs. But I see that as clear confirmation that the Peter we all know does come from the alternate universe. Plus the "Peter Bishop" gravestone that Walter was secretly visiting indicated that Peter died as at a young age.

October 16 2009 at 12:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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