Friday, May 7, 2010

Fringe “Northwest Passage” Recap & Review: Peter and Walternate Reunite

All photos from Fox

Fringe “Northwest Passage” focuses on Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson). who is in Washington State, seemingly trying to put as much distance between him and his life in Boston with Dr. Walter Bishop (John Noble). He had previously found that he is from the alternate universe, and he needs time – and distance – to sort things through. Peter Bishop is one of those characters on the show that is important, yet gets the least amount of screen time than the other lead stars, and it was nice to see that Peter’s character can carry a show on his own. It was also nice to see that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, as in this episode Peter, like his father(s), uses science to help crack a case.

The biggest surprise/non-surprise at the end of the show was the appearance of the "Secretary" who is none other than the alternate Walker - AKA the "Walternate." It wasn't hard to deduce that Walter from the other side would find a way to come over to "our" side and get his son. Now the real battle will begin, and based on the previews, Peter will be sucked into it, front and center.

Here's what happened:
While off by himself in a remote area of Washington State, Peter strikes up a quick friendship with a waitress at a diner. She often males music CDs for regular customers, and decides even though she knows little about Peter, she'll make him one and bring it to his hotel. She never shows. When Peter gets to the diner and finds she is missing, the local sheriff''s office focuses their attention on Peter. When her body is found, things look grim for Peter, who is locked up in the back of the sheriff''s car. But quickly he goes from suspect to colleague when he asks Sheriff Tracy Mathis (Martha Plimpton) to check to see if the woman has a part of her brain missing - her temporal lobe – and it turns out that is exactly the case. Mathis still is guarded about Peter, but doesn’t verify his story about working with the FBI. Peter had tipped of Agent Broyles (Lance Reddick) but swore Broyles to secrecy with Walter about his location.

Meanwhile, Walter is back in Boston and freaks out in a supermarket while shopping, upset about the chemicals being put into toaster pastries. It’s clear that he misses Peter and his mental state is falling apart and he seems depressed. When Agent Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv) and Astrid (Jasika Nicole) get Walter back home, his house is a complete mess and there is only what looks like a piece of spoiled fruit in the refrigerator. Astrid begins to help get Walter settled back down, making sure he gets his supply of pudding pops, and his mind gets settled enough for him to think about how to find Peter. He realizes that some of the things he brought back from Jacksonville are from the alternate universe and have the “glimmer”. If he can get the proper frequency from that glimmer, he can find a way to track Peter.

Back in Washington, things get complicated for Peter as he gets phone calls where no one is there, just static. He also thought he saw Newton (Sebastian Roché) at the crime scene, and later, with Mathis, sees him again in the woods when they search for Deputy Ferguson (Patrick Gilmore) who has also gone missing. When he and Mathis get separated and Peter shoots at Newton – nothing is there, though – Mathis catches up to him. Peter seems worried that she is now a shape shifter, and asks her to tell him about what she dropped in the morgue. When she answers it was the pen that said "Find the crack" on it, a gift from her partner Ferguson, he knows this is only something she would know, and he knows she is not a shape shifter. The “find the crack” on the pen meant that in the darkness, look for the crack as that is how the light gets though.

When they get a call about another dead body, they worry it is Ferguson, but instead it is another woman, and a part of her skull and brain is missing. But while the first victim and Ferguson both had direct interaction with Peter and whose temporal lobes may have been able to give information about Peter, this latest victim is completely unknown to Peter, and she hadn’t been to any of the places Peter has been before, either. But when they find her truck abandoned on the road, they realize that she may have been stopped by the police – or someone impersonating a cop. Mathis again wants to call the FBI, but Peter talks her out of it. He has an idea – the victims may have all be terrified when they died, and he can use adrenaline absorption from their bodies in order to determine time of death, and with that, a possible location of where they were taken to have their temporal lobes removed.

Back in the morgue, in a “like father like son” scene, Peter uses the brain chemistry and calculations in order to map possible locations. Mathis recalls a large dairy farm in that central area. When they both head there, the man there seems normal – and answers the right question so they know he is not a shape shifter. He also seems and willing to help, but when Mathis leaves to call for backup, Peter sees a music CD that the waitress made for him, and the dairy farmer guy lunges at Peter in attack. But Peter gets the upper hand as Mathis returns. Dairy farmer guy says he just wanted to be close to the girls and couldn't stop. They also find Ferguson in another room, alive and with his brain intact.

Afterwards, Mathis thanks Peter for helping her find Ferguson and the killer – even though the killer may not have been who Peter thought. She wishes she could do something for him, and when he says he doesn’t know who he is anymore, she tells him a personal story. Her family was murdered when she was in college and she still thinks she might catch whoever did it. But she's found her place now, and says he will too. She gives Peter her "Find the Crack" pen.

Back in Boston in the lab, Walter is working on his plan to find Peter, but when Astrid catches that Walter purposely put in the wrong numbers, he says he worried what will happen if he finds Peter and Peter won't forgive him. Olivia enters and says she found Peter – I am sure Broyles told her when Olivia pressured him – and she flying to Washington and invites Walter to come along.

Back in Washington, Peter thinks all is done andhe can finally relax. When he begins to listen to the CD the waitress made for him, he closes is eyes but suddenly sees Newton standing over him, with a gun aimed at him. Newton calls for "Mr. Secretary" to come out, and we see it is none other than Walter – or shall I say “Walternate” – as it is the alternate universe Walter Bishop, Peter's real father. He says “Hello son" and, with a stunned Peter. we go to black.

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