There's a little more exploration this week of what possibilities the bridge between the two universes hold: Earth-2 has a serial killer, so why not pop over with his counterpart from our universe, who is a non-murdering forensic psychologist, to help find the guy? They do their best to prevent him from finding out that he's investigating his counterpart in the other universe (or even that there is another universe), but of course that's going to come out. And when it does, John McClellan goes rogue to try to save the serial killer version of himself. Instead winds up the victim of the killer's memory-extracting machine (swear to God), which the killer uses to try to make himself feel better. The psychologist is able to pinpoint the event that made him a doctor over here and Dexter over there, so at least the murderer to get a little bit of peace, before blowing his own head off.
Anyway, we also get to see what the Peterlessness means for the other universe, and the best aspect is that AlternaBroyles is still alive. And you'll be glad to know that even though this week's plot seems to organically serve as commentary on the “where'd Peter go?” storyline, the dialogue is still as subtle as a sledgehammer to the temple, with Astrid wondering if Olivia has ever considered the fact that maybe her type just “doesn't exist.” He exists, all right, and Walter can hear him, but the poor man thinks he's going crazy.
Daniel is a writer in Newfoundland with a wife and a daughter. He still prefers "One Night in Bangkok." Follow him on Twitter (@DanMacEachern) or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I forgot to comment on this last recap, but it's worth pointing out that the "Previously on Fringe" montages have tweaked the Peter-disappearing scene by giving him a little shimmer instead of just flat-out disappearing. A little revisionism there, eh? Or were these scenes prepared by someone who considers himself the George Lucas of "Previously on" montages?
Anyway, "One Night in October" opens with a man shakily holding his wallet open to the pictures that he carries, looking at one of a young boy. From behind him, another guy says to tell him about the day the picture was taken, and the first man says, "I think I was six years old. We'd go camping in the white mountains in the summer." Wait, that's a picture of himself and not his son? Who carries around a picture of himself as a child? With all the debit and credit and customer loyalty cards we have to carry these days, you gotta be ruthless with your wallet so you're not sitting on a Rubik's Cube in your back pocket. A picture of himself? Fortunately, this guy's appearance in the opening segment means we know he's going to die, and I say good riddance.
Anyway, the weird guy keeps interrogating the shaky guy about the picture, which was taken by Mama Shaky. "Did you have a good relationship with her?" asks the weird guy, who's a little annoyed when shaky guy doesn't answer but says he misses her very much. The weird guy adjusts a dial on his machine which includes a beaker of bright blue (or that could just be the lighting) fluid that's coursing through a convoluted path of flexible tubing in and out of various contraptions and finally up into the back of shaky guy's skull. The back of his head had been shaven and there is a hole in the skull, and I have to think that I'd be a little shaky if this were happening to me too. The interrogator asks what else happened that day. "My brothers and I... we begged her to keep it. We wore her down," says the poor dead bastard. A tear is running out one eye and it's getting harder and harder for him to speak. "She said yes. We named him Fred." We finally focus in on the questioner's stubbly face. He looks quite interested in the responses, and asks one final question: "How did that make you feel?" And the answer: "Happy." Then shaky man goes still. Completely still. The tinkling noises make it sound like he's frozen solid.
After the opening credits, Walter is bitching about the horrid creatures in the other universe: "They are loathsome. Hateful. Contemptible," he spits, to a mostly disinterested Agent Lincoln Lee, while Walter throws sheets and other assorted coverings over the tables and equipment in the lab, although it's possible he's just drying his laundry, like maybe the FBI could spring for a nice dryer for the agoraphobic mad scientist who lives in the lab.