Fringe, S4 Ep1 – Neither Here Nor There

Amber title screen
Olivia calms Walter

He won't be only in your head soon, I promise!

Astrid comes back and tries to convince him that there was no man except maybe Agent Lee, but Walter is adamant — and still freaking out. Finally Olivia comes over and puts her hands on his shoulders, telling him that whatever it was, they’re here now and things will be all right. Aww. The family dynamic is here, still, although it’s sadder and incomplete. Also, there’s music playing in the background that sounds a little like something from Harry Potter. It’s cool, but a bit distracting.

As Walter gets a change of clothes, Lincoln asks Olivia if he’s all right. Olivia says that depends on your definition of the phrase. Walter is “functional, except when he’s not”, but he is frequently brilliant, too. She explains that he just never had anything to tether him to the world. Gahhh, so SAD! Peter better be back soon, because this is killing me.

Later, without a shirt on (or gloves!), Walter touches the victim Nadine Park’s hands and remarks himself that it’s sad, echoing the thoughts of everyone watching. But what he means is that she has an engagement ring. “I don’t think there’s anything sadder than when two people are meant to be together and something intervenes,” Walter says. Olivia doesn’t look unaffected by this. Peter? Come back! Now!

Some test results are ready, and Walter brings them over to Agent Lee. He congratulates Lee on the idea of iron-related illnesses being a connection between the victims — though that was wrong. Lee smiles and says it was a long shot, anyway. Walter says that they do all have illnesses, though, such as hair loss, gout, and other things. I think he might mean “symptoms”, since he goes on to say that all those things were caused by heavy metal poisoning. It doesn’t seem like a coincidence. Further, now all the victims’ blood levels are back to normal, as if their blood had been cleaned. Walter doesn’t know why the killer might be taking things from their blood, but it would seem that he needs a lot of it.

We go to a dark room where Translucent Man is getting out a syringe to inject himself with something yellowy-orange. After doing so, he makes some kind of cryptic notation in a notebook.

Olivia’s on the phone, and Anna Torv sounds particularly Australian as she asks Broyles or whoever how this guy is identifying people suffering from heavy metal poisoning. Meanwhile, Lee stands by as Walter tells Astrid some details about the body’s tissue composition. It turns out this doesn’t have to do with the case, but with the parameters of using the body for experimentation. Lee is horrified to learn that this means these bodies are not being returned to the families.

Olivia explains that they can’t do that, because they can’t tell the families how they were killed. Instead, the families are simply told that the people have gone missing and they’re being looked for. Lee is outraged. Also, I’m annoyed because that doesn’t make sense. Why wouldn’t they just say they were killed in some accident and their bodies were too degraded to be seen/identified after? Anyway, Lee says it’s unfair to leave the families with just unanswered questions and a hole in their lives. Walter, would-be casual but not quite: “People die. It happens. Sometimes, they even die twice.” The obvious thought is Peter, but I doubt we’re supposed to think Walter is thinking about that. Olivia goes on that if they return the bodies, they have to file paperwork and that would draw too much attention to Fringe division. Hmph. Still. I guess it’s a question of falsifying paperwork as opposed to flat-out lying to the families.

Astrid interrupts the moment to inform them that one of the victims’ credit cards just had a hit. They see that it was an automatic renewal for a commuter pass — and that leads them to find out that all the kill zones were around commuter stations.

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