The final season of Fringe kicked off Friday, September 28 on Fox. There’s a time jump to the year 2036 where the Observers control the world. This leap into the future was set up in the Season 4 episode “Letters of Transit” showing Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson) and Olivia Dunham’s (Anna Torv) grown-up daughter, Etta (Georgina Haig) freeing grandpa Dr. Walter Bishop (John Noble), her father Peter and Agent Astrid Farnsworth (Jasika Nicole) from the amber they’ve been encased in for 20 years.
The former Fringe team are now insurgents and their first priority is to find Olivia. The question is what will Olivia and Peter’s reunion be like. Will she be happy to see him? Showrunner Joel Wyman revealed in a TV Line interview some details about the now-married couple’s dynamic.
“They had their daughter taken from them [by Observers]. And most couples, when they lose a child… don’t make it through that. So what happened to Peter and Olivia before the ambering?”
There will be references to the team’s pre-amber days. They’re now the rebel resistance team fighting for freedom. They know the tricks that were used against them. They must learn from past events and save the world from the Observers.
The first episode is titled “Transilience Thought Unifer Model-11.” Walter has a plan to fight the Observers but first they must find Olivia. Walter and September, their Observer ally had to hide the plan from the mind-reading invaders by scrambling parts of it in Walter’s brain. Two decades ago, Olivia had just retrieved the device for reassembling those parts when she had to amber herself to avoid detection.
The team finds people gone from the amber and Henrietta reveals they were taken by “amber gypsies.” They must get Olivia back by buying her back from the black market. The team search for her in the amber gypsies’ stock. Etta gives Walter $3,000 worth of shelled walnuts to give to the amber merchant. She must stay behind for fear of being recognized as a Fringe agent. The amber merchant tells Peter and Astrid where to find the “freshest cuts” and presses a silent alarm after they walk away. They can’t find Olivia and discover she has been sold. Olivia was sold to former rare-books seller Ed Markam who always had a thing for Olivia. He hoped to find a way to release her from the amber so she would be with him. Peter gets Olivia back from Ed. The merchant tips off the Observers and troops are closing in. Etta buys time for Walter to escape but he’s not in the van when she returns.
The loyalist troops capture Walter and take him to Captain Windmark, the Observer’s leader. He subjects Walter to a grueling psychic interrogation that damages Walter’s mind and erases the plan from Walter’s mind.
A poignant ending with Walter listening to Yaz’s “Only You” and seeing a yellow flower growing out of the street. When will the talented John Noble get the recognition he deserves for playing the broken, quirky and beloved genius?
Watch season 5 of Fringe Friday 9/8 central on Fox.