Fringe – S4 Ep16, Nothing As It Seems

Wow, that’s a really good title for this episode. (Of course, it’s generally a good subtitle for the whole show.)

"Seriously, how are you not crazy by now with all the things that have happened in that mind of yours?"

Following up after Olivia decided to let her memories from the other timeline take over so she could be with Peter last time, the first time we see her this week, she’s seeing an FBI shrink — and I’m positive it’s the same actress we saw when OurLiv was resisting being brainwashed into believing she was Fauxlivia, so there’s another excellent bit of continuity there. Anyway, the shrink wonders how Olivia can say she’s happy when she’s forgotten all the details of her life. Olivia admits that it’s odd, but she can handle it. She wants to focus on a real problem, namely stopping David Robert Jones. Instead, she’s been forced to take multiple scans and tests, and now she’s talking to a shrink so she can be re-approved for field duty. Ugh, I’m generally not at all a fan of the ‘everyone thinks the hero’s nuts’ plotline.

At least this one is different, though. Olivia reports to Broyles’ office after the session is through, where she learns that she’s still not approved. She’s frustrated, wondering why it matters that she remembers some details differently, and Broyles cuts in to give her an example of just how differently that can be: her sister Rachel is still married, and she and her husband have two children — Ella, and a younger brother, Eddie (that none of us including Olivia have ever heard of). Olivia is shocked. Broyles goes on that the psychologist’s report states that 40% of what Olivia said about her life is incorrect, which means as far as the FBI higher ups are concerned that she isn’t the same agent they licensed.

At her apartment, Peter quickly divines what happened, and Olivia sighs that the FBI doesn’t even want her to consult on cases. Broyles told her to look at it as vacation. She goes on, “Why would I assume that just because you and I are back together, that everything would be fine? Like the world is going to live up to my every expectation.” Heh. Nice direct answer to the fans who last week complained that it was too easy that their loooove would fix everything! Anyway, Peter says a vacation might not be so bad, and they banter cutely. Then Peter’s phone rings and it’s Lincoln, calling him in to work. Olivia tells Peter it’s fine, and she sits there sadly when Peter goes.

If you asked me to choose which relationship I loved more, Peter and Walter or Peter and Olivia, I'd be awfully hard-pressed to say.

And there’s another smaller storyline that is all love. Walter greets Peter upon his first entry into the lab with a “Happy birthday!” even though it’s not the day. It turns out, Walter bought his son a present every year to help him deal with the loss (sob), and now he wants to give them to Peter. As he says, “I know you’re not him — my Peter — but you’re as close as I’m going to get.” (Wait, Peter not told anyone that September said this was his world?) They beam at each other and I melt completely from their awesomeness, especially when Peter gives a teary-eyed Walter a big hug and a “Thank you.” Astrid looks moved, and Lincoln is reluctant to interrupt the moment.

Later, Olivia, Peter, and Astrid are all making fun of the conspiracy theories that the cultists from the case have been discussing. They sound like they’re having a lot of fun (and let’s be honest, they could all use a little fun), and Walter remarks to Lincoln that he’s missed having a family. At first, Lincoln makes a sarcastic comment about how great that is, and then Walter says he’s including Lincoln in that group — after all, he makes a darn good chess partner.

At the end, Walter finishes unwrapping all the gifts. One of them is one of those awesome gyroscope things where you spin the magnets along two little parallel bars… well, I fail at describing it, but anyway, it’s awesome. When Peter comes in, he says he loves those things and starts playing with it. And then when Broyles comes in, the whole group looks as guilty as a bunch of kids caught playing with something they shouldn’t be. Peter even hides the magnet thing behind his back. It’s adorable.

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