FRINGE Recap: 'Welcome to Westfield' - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

FRINGE Recap: ‘Welcome to Westfield’

February 10, 2012 by  

This season of FRINGE has been a bit…off. After all, previous to this, it had been 11 full episodes since we got to see “our” versions of Walter and Olivia, and I’ll speak for myself in saying that I’ve certainly missed them.

But after “Welcome to Westfield,” it appears that things have taken another turn.

Olivia, Peter, and Walter (who decided to leave the lab) venture out to investigate a fringe event, when Walter says they should sneak away for some pie. Nothing unusual for Walter, but their trip to the diner reveals something bizarre — the man takes Walter’s order and then a moment later approaches him as if they’ve never met. More disturbingly, Peter finds an injured man in the back. When the waiter attacks Walter and Peter, Olivia is forced to step in to save the day. The trio take the injured man and try to leave, only to find themselves right back where they started.

Trapped inside the town with no way to communicate to the outside world, they go to a gym where other people are suffering similar symptoms; as it’s put they have “memories from someone else’s life.”

Meanwhile, Olivia starts to panic about what that means for her. The episode started off with her steamy dream about Peter, and then when she and the Bishops start theorizing about how this town could be experiencing a massive shared experience, she brought up the military testing gone wrong “they” investigated in Edina (which we saw in the second season episode, “Johari Window”). Walter had no memory of it, and Peter noted his team had been the one to look into that case. Peter theorizes that perhaps this was the work of David Robert Jones and the mineral he stole.

Olivia and Peter have a nice talk where Dunham asks him about what she was like in his timeline. It was a nice glimpse into how Peter feels about his Olivia, and also an insight into their relationship viewers hadn’t been privy to previously. (Who knew they had a Friday night movie tradition? How adorably simple.)

Unfortunately, it’s not simply just the memories that are combining for the townspeople and as things progress, people start physically merging with their doubles. (Two sets of teeth should at least make chewing easier, right?) Walter does testing on people who are exhibiting signs of double memories and finds that they have 92 chromosomes present in their blood — except for Olivia whose results are normal.

As the land around them starts to collapse, they realize they need to get to the “eye of the storm” in order to survive. After the destruction is finished, Broyle and emergency personnel are able to get through and confirm there was a perimeter of the mineral David Robert Jones took a few weeks back.

Peter leaves Walter at the lab and goes to check on Olivia, who is calm and sipping on wine. When he notes a familiar smell, she wonders why he’s surprised she would buy their normal Friday night meal — and kisses him. Um…Olivia?!

And that’s where we’re left. Hanging for a week. Darn you, FRINGE writers!

Lingering questions/episode highlights:

  • Is this the first time Olivia’s been having these dreams since Peter returned? Are they dreams or are they memories? (And if they’re memories, does that make Peter’s non-“I love you” in “The Last Sam Weiss” weird?) Olivia’s struggle — and vulnerability — as she tried to find her footing with these new memories was a fantastically delicate tightrope Anna Torv walked.
  • Olivia’s results were normal, so was this the two timelines merging? Or was what she was experiencing a conveniently-timed coincidence?
  • Seriously, David Robert Jones, what the heck are you up to?
  • The look Walter gave Peter at the end when he realized how attached he had gotten to the new version of his son — and the realization that he may be losing him all over again was heartbreaking.
  • Favorite line of the episode, courtesy of Walter: “Will Olivia Dunham and Peter Bishop please report to the biology lab at once!”
  • Second episode in a row without Seth Gabel (Lincoln). As much as I adore the Lincolns, his absence hasn’t been overwhelmingly obvious.

What did you think of “Welcome to Westfield,” FRINGE fans? Was it everything you were hoping for?

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Filed under Fringe Recap


9 Responses to “FRINGE Recap: ‘Welcome to Westfield’”

  1. AngelMoonGirl on February 10th, 2012 11:44 pm

    IT WAS SO GOOD! Definitely my favorite of the season. And I’m SO happy about Polivia!

  2. f on February 11th, 2012 1:24 am


  3. eridapo on February 11th, 2012 2:32 am

    Henry Ian Cusick (Desmond from Lost) is announced as guest star today, and a plane crashes in Tonight’s Fringe episode…. Did he forget to push the button again? Wait.. was the island also responsible for Westfield’s electromagnetic problems….

  4. input on February 11th, 2012 2:39 pm

    Anna Torv; that was truly beautiful subtle nuance acting, like you said, walking a tightrope, those little shifts of the Olivia’s, that having someone in your head, etc. absolutely awesome.

    But what do the showrunners want with Olivia? I had hoped that the Olivia/Nina bond would finally give some insight in her past, but with this episode I now have given up on ever learning anything about her , mother, father, sister, abuse, is not going to happen.
    She just seems to be a tool for Nina, like the boy from Wallflower, Olivia stolen as a child, to experiment on by whoever feels like it?

    Actually I do not like the way Olivia as a character has been treated , S1 and S2 she was the hero, kick-ass, gatekeeper, strong independent, gone all that in S3 with the brainwashing, posessing, replacing and petersgirl and now some more brainwashing and on top she is on her Death March, as the glyphs say so far, death march empath Olive.

    Next week a schizophrenic, bit like Olivia now?
    Another mirror episode like Wallflower and Forced Prospective?

    Last season Anna had to play Olivia brainwashed, and Fauxlivia pretending besides the Olivia and Fauxlivia, this season both Olivia and Fauxlivia slightly different and now old Olivia in between, confused?
    That she can bring across all these different versions and the viewer sees which one is which at once, that is truly great acting.

  5. Michele on February 11th, 2012 11:23 pm

    Am I the only one who wasn’t happy with the ending of this episode? Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the rest of the episode but Olivia remembering Peter all of a sudden? I just don’t understand how that works. On one hand it could be that this timeline is Peter’s timeline which is why she remembers him. But her remembering him is not a good thing. She either has to handle remembering 2 different timelines or remembers a timeline that hasn’t happened which is crazy. Or it could be that it’s not his timeline and Olivia is possibly possessed by another version of herself. “I don’t know how to explain it but it was like another person was in my head.” They also bring up how Olivia is an empath which both original Olivia and different Olivia are so maybe they’re connecting. If that’s the case, I think that’s lame. I mean the only reason I wasn’t upset about the William Bell possession in season 3 was because it was funny. Possession just doesn’t feel like Fringe to me. I hope Peter just needs to get to his timeline but if this is his timeline, I think Olivia and Walter just have to get to know Peter again.

  6. Zepp on February 12th, 2012 9:16 am

    Somehow, I see that things are as they were coming to be. I realize some of these signs of retrorno it was before, as Walter, out (finally) of your lab and goes to a field work with Peter and Olivia, Olivia starts having dreams with Peter, and already very interested in him, the relationship between Peter and Walter, is returning to how it was, and, until the cow Gene, is back! I have a theory that tells me that all these “phenomena” as the events in Westfield, the resurgence of Olvia before, we also have the return of Walter’s mood, among others, is the work of the Observer September, in his hypothetical dissent, the group of Observers, I think. The September, I think, that should be behind it all, and not Mr. Jones. But this is just an idea.

  7. Marisa Roffman on February 13th, 2012 1:42 am

    New thought — what does Olivia potentially regaining her memory mean for Fauxlivia?

  8. Zepp on February 13th, 2012 2:22 pm

    Well, Marisa, I see now a fierce dispute between Olivia (with its previous memory), and Fauxlívia mainly by Peter. The animosity between the two comes from a long time since there was an exchange of identity between the two, and the Fauxlívia even had a son with Peter (and it still does not know, that). I see Fauxlívia and Olivia, with a common passion: Peter, besides, a “natural” antagonism between them, “who-is-the-best”, which resulted in high levels of competitiveness between these two I think. Who should win this dispute? I do not know, but I would be with Olivia, although I thoroughly enjoy the Fauxlívia, too.

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