Fringe
Letters of Transit

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In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

We forgo any kind of previouslies this week, largely because they're irrelevant. Instead, we get some scrolling exposition -- in a scrolling style of white text with red emphasis that is an homage to Blade Runner and few movies are worthier of homage -- that explains that the Observers started kicking humanity's ass in 2015, with human uprisings proving bloody and futile. Survivors became known as "natives" while some humans showed their allegiance to the Observers and were marked and became known as "loyalists." Fringe is still an ongoing concern, but it's been reduced and is now essentially a police force after the original Fringe team fought the invasion and was defeated.

"The resistance was quickly overcome... or so they thought" are the final words on the screen, before we land in Boston in the year 2036, and a young woman with long, straight blonde hair strides purposefully through a deserted back alley before ringing the doorbell at some skeevy entrance. It's answered by a burly guy with a goatee and Observer lettering across his right cheek. Either this is a loyalist or tattoos in 2036 are really, really lame.

"Agent," he says and lets her in to a brightly lit 21st-century speakeasy, strings of white lights hanging everywhere. The place is filled with Observers, varying only in whether they have their hats on our off. There are women serving drinks, too and an Observer pulls one onto his lap. A human -- no writing on his cheek -- tells the Observer that she's got the next shift: "You guys keep taking my girls, you're gonna put me out of business," he says. The Observer tells the man to get a new girl -- because I guess the Observers are not just emotionless watchers, but also potential rapists? -- and throws the woman into his now vacant seat. He's gotten up so he can stare defiantly at the human -- I guess this would be a "native" -- who then punches him in the gut. He's quickly seized by a couple of loyalists in uniform and held for an Observer, who seems to have a little seniority judging from the deference of those around him. "You seem to be quite... agitated," he says to the native, who immediately spits at him. Not a good move. The Observer starts staring him down -- you know, like Larry David does when he's trying to figure out if someone is lying or not. Generally though, when Larry David does it the other person doesn't start bleeding from the ears, as this poor bastard does.

Then he's hit from behind or something by the blonde agent, much to the Observer's annoyance. But she points out this is a native and therefore her jurisdiction. She apologizes to the Observer, named "Capt. Windmark," and says sure Windmark could "wipe him," but then there'd be an inquiry and paperwork and the club would be shut down for two days and she'd lose a lot of kickbacks.

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