Welcome to Fringe Observations: the comprehensive guide to the clues and easter eggs from the Fringe Season 3 finale, episode 3.22 – “The Day We Died”.
We also dive deep into the mythology, symbolism, and resonating factors to explore the meaning and unlock the interconnected mystery of Fringe.
As we predicted last time out, the episode clue from “The Last Sam Weiss” for “The Day We Died” was the number on the police car – “2026”- in reference to the year that Peter’s future place.
A close look at the revised Fringe Division logo of the future. ‘Over Here’ have adopted the parallel “F” thematic that was used by the alternate universe Fringe Division.
Red is a popular color in Fringe. In part, the color is a thematic marker for the alternate universe. Here we see Moreau (“More AU”) continue his mission to bring about the end of days – Walternate’s revenge for Peter destroying his universe. The red is almost a homage to his world.
The light-bomb that Moreau employs issues a variant of the famous green-green-green-red color sequence – a mythology pattern with ties to the Observers, it was first introduced in the Pilot on Olivia’s uncle’s kayak.
Here, the sequence runs backwards: red-red-red-green. Perhaps there’s something in that?
The famous blue flash, seen here in the form of energy as Moreau’s light bomb destroys the opera house..
..causing it to snow. Olivia used her emotions to make it snow in “Subject 13”.
Incidentally, this is the same opera house that Olivia, Walter, Nick Lane, Sally Clark and James Heath used to cross over there in the Season 2 finale, Part 1. We find out that Walternate’s End-Of-Dayers targeted locations with these ‘soft spots’ to accelerate doomsday.
As an aside, it’s somewhat interesting that Walternate is again involved in accelerating a natural process, after speeding up the birth of Baby Henry in “Bloodline”.
The new Gray title sequence contained the following Fringe sciences of the future:
- Cellular Rejuvenation
- Thought Extraction
- Neural Partitioning
- Brain Porting
- Temporal Plasticity
- Chaos Structure
- Dual Maternity
- Clonal Transplantation
- Bio Suspension
They all relate to things that are in short supply in this branch of the future.
The “Observers Are Here” easter egg is still present.
The Rocket Poppeteers poster outside of the Orpheum Opera House is a viral clue (inset) relating to the upcoming JJ. Abrams and Steven Spielberg movie, Super 8.
You can visit the Rocket Puppeteers viral site here.
Pen-ny For Them
There have been many pen references over the past season or so. Here’s another vague reference with Peter using his pen to pick up Moreau’s light-bomb dud.
Grin And Beard It
A bearded and disheveled Walter in prison echoes the St. Claire’s scene from the Pilot (inset). We often talk about the circular nature of the story, this is another example in one of the most overtly cyclical Fringe episodes to date.
Walter looks at Peter through another window, in a thematic callback to “Peter”. The physical distance between them is small, but Walter’s level disconnect with ‘Peter’s reality’ is fairly large due to his time in confinement.
An Eye Phill
Broyles loses his right eye at some point in the future. This may be connected to the “Detroit” incident that obviously holds great meaning to him and Peter.
In an artistic sense, it may symbolize an ‘imbalance’ in Broyles.
The most evoking connection comes from the fact that in the alternate universe Broyles’ son, Chris, was blind. Another example of the way nature appropriates balance, and the sometimes gradual onset of this effect.
Lab Of Honor
Peter reintroduces Walter to his old lab in a scene that parallels the Pilot episode (inset).
The Walts And The Loop
Walter spins around in his swivel chair before twirling Olivia around moments later. Both actions mimic the time-loop that the characters are travelling in.
Amanda from across the street draws a picture of Olivia, Peter and their ‘future’ child. The child is holding Peter’s hand but not Olivia’s – foreshadowing of some kind?
The drawing is similar to the one that young Olivia drew of herself and Peter in “Subject 13”.
The word “POSSESSION” can be seen under the magnifying glass. It could refer to Peter ‘possessing’ his future consciousness, and the general melding of consciousness seen in this episode.
An aerial look at the wormhole in Central Park, encased in amber.
Here it resembles a yellow ambered road to the past.
Ride On Reiden Lake
An interesting look at the vegetation around Reiden Lake, the location of the Zero Event. Despite the alternate universe being destroyed several years earlier, this may well be a sign that the Blight continues to manifest over here. (indeed, it is implied throughout the episode).
Off His Chess
Chess board – game reference.
Walternate tricks Peter using a projection of himself – something that is there, but not. This is the latest in a long line of projection references, a few of which include:
Projection Peter – Olivia’s subconscious representation of Peter, who helped her to find her way home from the alternate universe during the early part of Season 3.
The many projections encountered in ‘LSD’, when Walter and Peter went inside Olivia’s subconscious to rescue her from her own confusion.
By the end of “The Day We Died”, Peter himself becomes a kind of projection, as he doesn’t exist in the new time-line that he created.
Olivia, Ella and the Fringe operatives are knocked unconscious by the vortex blast. The overhead shot reveals the words: ONLY SEPT.
This may be an intentional easter egg relating to September, particularly given his prominent focus at the end of the episode and his increasing ability to correctly perceive the choices the characters make.
September is also the ninth month of the year, and the 9 characters appear to be arranged in the shape of a “9“.
Fire + Water
Olivia’s Viking-esque funeral incorporated fire and water. Water is representative of the subconscious – a prominent theme in Olivia’s journey. Fire (pyrokinesis) is also one of Olivia’s most portrayed abilities.
The increasing occurrence of vortexes may also mean that more people burn the bodies of the dead, rather than have them disappear into oblivion.
Peter’s vision of the future spanned days, however it only lasted just over 60 seconds worth of linear time in the ‘past’.
It takes Peter around 6 minutes to join the two universes, making the change that Future Walter talked about.
I’ll Join Blue Together
Peter joins the two universes by tearing holes in both, leading to the Machine room. The process is accompanied by the famous blue flash.
This act would also imply that there is now one BBM.
Observing The Observers
Ten Observers (one is slightly obscured above), including December and September, converge outside the Statue of Liberty.
Future Peter tells Olivia that he feels “just like new“. This is interesting in a time-liney-wimey sort of way.
Astrid: “The end of days. That’s one of my father’s favorite sermons. When the world dies and the saviour arrives to end the suffering and usher all the worthy into heaven.”
Peter on needing Walter’s help: “I think now it might be past time.”
Peter to Walternate: “I’m sorry for destroying our world. If I could take back that choice, I would.”
Walter to Ella: “Truly, if I could go back in time and change things, I would. I’d do anything to be able to go back and make different choices.”
- The recurring ‘Bad Robot number’ returns, this time with Peter’s age in this vision of the future – 47.
- Broyles’ initial resistance to granting Walter’s temporary release parallels the Pilot, when Olivia needed to get Walter out of St. Claire’s to save John Scott.
- Future Olivia wears brighter colors, as opposed to the grays the Cortexiphan subjects were conditioned to wear.
- Olivia asks Peter “how you holding up?” In Over There Part 2, William Bell says to Peter: “you’re holding up better than I would have thought.”
- Walter notes that Walternate’s light-bomb technology is 10-15 years ahead of its time. It’s interesting to consider that Walternate is still ahead of the curve, even though his universe has long been destroyed.
- Without Walternate’s technology, Walter may not have realized that he was the one who sent the Machine back through time. This in turn adds another layer to time-loop and the almost sentient entanglement of both Walters.
- Red doors carry thematic weight, particularly since “Lysergic Acid Diethylamide“. Peter enters through the red door of his old beach house.
- Duality reference: Peter calls Walter and Walternate, Yin and Yang. This concept also signifies balance, and relates to the loop that our characters are caught up in.
- Olivia seems to deactivate the BBM when she approaches Peter, though it could be argued that his vision was naturally coming to an end. The former makes sense in that Olivia is the “fail-safe”.
- The glyph code for “The Day We Died” is NO MORE. As is in no more alternate universe (for a while), and no more Peter (in some context), and the ‘undoing’ of the future glimpsed in Peter’s vision.
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