Fringe is a lot like its fellow Bad Robot produced show, Lost, in that they are notorious for answering a question with multiple questions instead of answers. It's a technique that makes audiences both scratch their heads and keep tuning in for more mystery. This level of audience intrigue sometimes turns to frustration but every so often patience pays off while still not giving too much away. Sort of.
To say "The End of All Things" answered most of the series' big questions would be a reach but that doesn't mean key answers weren't given. The episode continues with Olivia and Nina being held captive by none other than David Robert Jones. Jones is determined to 'activate' Olivia (much like how he did in season 1) so she is able to use her cotextiphan abilities, this time by threatening Nina's life. Meanwhile, Broyles and Lincoln interrogate the other Nina for her involvement to no avail. Just before Peter loses hope the 'September' observer stumbles into Walter's lab with the same gunshot wound from six episodes ago. With the observer possibly being moments away from death Walter helps Peter try to find Olivia by entering September's mind. Then stuff gets a bit crazy.
Just how crazy you ask? Well how about seeing our universe's very beginning (aka the Big Bang) as it happened. That crazy enough?
When Peter entered the observer's mind he had a front row seat to some huge moments in time but he had more important things to show Peter. From an audience perspective we get to re-watch the events that led Peter from one universe to the other during his time inside the observer's mind. From Peter's perspective seeing these events simply confirm Walter's earlier confessions but it's the event of Peter's son Henry that is news to him. Peter's time with the observer was limited but he did learn a number of things. Peter learns the observer's code name is September, he is human but from the future, and more importantly the child he had with the other Olivia (Bolivia) and that it was huge mistake. Just how big of a mistake we don't know yet, but this new Peter-less time-line was supposed to fix that mistake, meaning no existence of Henry.
Surprisingly it wasn't Peter's time with the observer that revealed most of the episode's answers but Olivia's time locked up with Nina. After last episode's ending I, like most people, assumed the regular Nina, Olivia was locked up with, was replaced by a shape-shifter; and that shape-shifter was the one in FBI custody with Broyles and Lincoln. Now I have no idea who is who. Since the Nina locked up with Olivia is working with Jones there is no telling where each Nina is from. The one working with Jones could be from the other universe, and that wouldn't be a stretch seeing how the alternate Broyles is too secretly with Jones on his side. If that's true there have been two Ninas in the main universe (unknowingly) for a while now or has the regular Nina still been replaced by a shape-shifter? My Nina logic headache aside I can't wait to see how this all unfolds.
The ending for "The End of All Things" brought up just as many questions as it answered. We now know the reason why Olivia's abilities seem to active when they do is because of Peter. When he is around she seems to access those powers without a lot of heighten emotion. Also, from Peter's time with the observer we learn there is a bigger connection with him and Olivia but how or why there is a connection there are still big questions. With the time-line Peter wants to return to being labeled as a massive irregularity by the observers what will happen if Peter is able to get back there? Or can he? But if he was able to would that mean his son Henry would still be alive? On any other show I might be overthinking things but no, just another great Fringe episode that's all.
Andrew Burns loves film and comics, and can be found writing about when those worlds converge. You can follow him on Twitter at @myAndrewBurns.