Fringe, S4 Ep3 – Alone in the World

Fungus-infested morgue
Aaron with his hat and milkshake


The next shot is of the blender whirring away. To no one’s surprise, Walter has made the two of them milkshakes. Awww. Also, they’re both wearing tinfoil hats, which is pretty adorable. They each enjoy a sip (through a straw, of course), and then Aaron asks Walter how his son died. Way to spoil the mood, there, Aaron. But other than being sad, of course, Walter doesn’t seem to mind. Anyway, could you resist this face? I think not.

Walter says that Peter was very sick, and he couldn’t find a cure in time. Then he goes on, saying that he discovered that in an alternate universe, another version of his son was dying of the same illness. So, he crossed over with the intention of bringing him back to save him. As you do. If you’re Walter Bishop. But when they got back, the frozen lake where the portal stood cracked, and Peter drowned. Walter had to watch his son die all over again. GEEZ. That’s how things got “fixed”?! Poor Walter. That’s especially terrible after having recently rewatched “Peter”, from season two. Aw, man. Aaron seems not unmoved by the story, but he also wonders how Walter ever got out of the mental institution that he mentioned earlier.

In the tunnel, Olivia asks a nameless agent how soon before they get floodlights. Also, I have to note that no one is wearing protective gear. I know Walter said this thing doesn’t notice you unless you touch it, but… it’s dark, and someone might bump into it, right? And it’s a freaking giant fungus that can kill you in minutes! I would certainly want as much protective gear on me as I could get, although I understand from a director’s standpoint we want to be able to see the actors. Anyway. Olivia notices that there is artwork on the walls, and it looks familiar. Then the floodlights turn on, revealing the size of the colony. I guess. The music is all dramatic and there is light, but I can’t really say what we’re looking at.

Back in the lab, Walter is getting ready to pour Aaron another milkshake, but he starts to squint and complain that it’s really bright. Walter is confused. In the tunnel, Lincoln brings a hand-held floodlight over to a crack in the wall, where he shines it in and we see that there’s a lot of the fungus. In the lab, Walter tries to start to comfort the boy, but he jumps back and screams, “Get away from me! It’s too bright!” Back with Olivia and Lincoln, we see the fungus start to grow across some of the lights, shorting them out. And even at this point, the first time I watched this, I still didn’t get it. Olivia says, “Burn it. Burn it all,” and I can’t blame her, because: seriously creepy.

Fallen Aaron

C'mon, Aaron - at least in "E.T.", the alien was cute. Really, a fungus?

Now Walter is kneeling over a fallen Aaron and calling for Astrid. Aaron is just about unconscious, which isn’t surprising when they realize that he also has a very high fever. Walter tells Astrid that he got scared quite suddenly, and then just started burning up — and then he makes the connection and calls Olivia. In the tunnel, the flamethrowers are going (and it’s too bad Olivia doesn’t get to wield one). She answers her phone to be told, “Stop what you’re doing! You’re killing the boy.”

Things are calmer in the lab when we come back. Aaron is still groggy, but in an ice bath. Walter makes a comment about how it won’t be much longer because they don’t want to turn Aaron into a popsicle. Then, awesomely, he says, “Oh… Astrid-” and Astrid immediately says, “I’ll get you one later, Walter.” Hee! Walter talks to Olivia (and both Olivia and Lincoln are using headsets, which is a bit disturbingly like the Other Side even though they look different) and confirms that Aaron’s temperature is going down now. Olivia wants to know why, if there’s a connection between Aaron and this fungus, the destruction of the fungus at the morgue didn’t have any effect. Walter doesn’t know that yet, nor does he know how to break the link between the boy and the fungus — although he does guess that learning how they connected in the first place would be a good start. Olivia has an idea about that.

Walter comforts AaronAaron is in Walter’s bed in the lab, and Walter sits down on the edge to ask him, very gently but like a disappointed father, why he lied to them. Walter shows him his artwork from his notebook, and tells him that Olivia saw similar art in the tunnel. He guesses Aaron’s been there a lot. Aaron looks guilty. He explains haltingly that he’s been going there every so often for a while, and after a bit going there started to make him feel better, like he wasn’t alone. It was like there was something there that felt sad when he felt sad. So we’ve got a bit of an E.T. thing going, I guess. Except this kid has probably never seen that movie, and now I feel old. Aaron said he thought it was just his imagination, or that maybe he was going crazy. But it felt like it wanted to protect him. Walter jumps in to guess that Aaron intentionally led the boys who were chasing him to the tunnel, because it told him to. Aaron starts to cry and says he didn’t know they were going to die. Walter strokes his hair and shushes him, saying he believes he did nothing wrong.

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