First off, I am not going to dive into spoilery material much, but there will likely be a few things that could possibly spoil elements of the episode for you. So, don't read this review of you don't want to know anything. Otherwise, read away knowing that what I say will mostly just touch on my reactions to what I watched.
"Neither Here Nor There" - Episode 4.01
THE FRINGE TEAM TAKES NEW SHAPE AS THE IMPACT OF PETER’S HEROIC CHOICE UNFOLDS IN THE FOURTH SEASON PREMIERE OF “FRINGE” FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, ON FOX.
FRI SEPT 23 9/8c
"I need to erase someone from time."The episode kicks off with the recent changes to the FRINGE world after the events of the season 3 finale. Pacey Poof, aka Peter, is gone and seemingly forgotten but not entirely erased from time. The episode does reference him and reveals part of "the trigger" (look for my spoiler somewhere on this site) but also moves forward with a case-of-the-week that brings a new member to the team. But at all time the audience is aware of Poof's existence, or lack thereof. I would compare this to a will-they-won't-they type romance device used on oh so many shows, but this time the anticipation is always in the expectation that Peter will somehow appear. Does he? Will he? Tune in!
What is clear is that Pacey Poof's actions and the Observer's attempt to "fix" time, have different levels of effect on those he knew and loved. Parts of that story-line remind me of "The Constant" arc on LOST. I am sure some people will find a way to have a problem with that. I am not one of those people.
I am not going to write a point-by-point of the episode, I am sure others will do a fine job of that. I will just say that I think there are very strong elements to "Neither Here Nor There" and those who are heavily invested in the Peter arc will be glued to their seat. There is also an interesting MEN IN BLACK vibe near the end that I loved.
95 out of 100
"One Night in October" - Episode 4.02
A SERIAL KILLER FORCES THE TWO FRINGE TEAMS TO WORK TOGETHER ON AN ALL-NEW “FRINGE” FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, ON FOX
FRI SEPT 30 9/8c
"She bought my ignorance with baked goods..."The episode continues pretty much from where the last left off (minus the intro, which is related to the case-of-the-week). The show digs more into the feelings between the people of the two worlds toward each other while also fighting through the plot of the previous episode. The two worlds have to work together and it seems no one on our side likes it much.
There are some cool Olivia/Fauxlivia scenes here. Anna Torv didn't have to do much interacting with herself in season 3 but now it is an important part of the story. Those who think she was robbed of a nomination by the Emmy voters will be screaming even louder now. I am really interested to see where this whole Olivia/Fauxlivia thing goes. There are so many possible scenarios for fun interactions, betrayals, friendships, and so on between these two. I wonder how Torv doesn't get confused... I guess that is what being a professional is all about.
There is also a theme going about Walter's melancholy that allows the phenomenal John Noble to extend his acting chops beyond our already high expectations. Walt is different without his Peter and we know he has to eventually find him, wherever he is, to be complete. I felt very sad for his character. Oh, Pacey Poof... come back!
I have never been much of a fan of the case-of-the-week on FRINGE and I am struggling to care about what it means to the first two episodes, but at least the second episode adds an interesting element to it with the complexity of the two worlds interacting with each other. However, halfway through the second episode I just wanted to get to the Pacey stuff that I know is just waiting to reveal more.
Thankfully, we won't be waiting long for that.
The episode is very good but loses some points from me because I feel the case-of-the-week takes away from my need for more Pacey Poof stuff! Anna Torv owns every scene she is in, especially when playing off herself. The cooperation between the two worlds makes for a fun new dynamic. And Pacey Poof is... well, the episode ends on a high note which is why it earns a higher score than the first.
96 out of 100