If you watched Friday’s “The Last Sam Weiss” episode of Fringe, you’ll probably have noticed several images flash before Peter’s eyes moments before the story leaped-forward to a post apocalyptic future. But the images were so quick that you might have had a hard time catching them all.
Fear not. We’ve captured all of the flashes and posted them below the jump.
Updated with 2 additional images – thanks to berry for the tip.
The flashes came in two waves – as Peter was walking up the stairs to enter the Boom-Boom-Machine, and when he was within its ‘hallowed’ panels.
Here’s the first wave:
And here’s the second lot:
As you can see, they’re all Peter/Olivia-related moments. (there’s even an image from the fairytale episode, “Brown Betty”).
Each wave of flashes is bookended by a bright white light – somewhat interesting, given the recent ‘LSD’ episode where Peter stepped into a similarly bright white light when finding Olivia inside her own mind (which may or may not say something):
But what to make of the flashes?
I see them as representing an emotional download of ‘memories’, providing a view of what Peter is thinking (or feeling) as he prepares to succumb to the BBM. It’s a tried and trusted way to usher audience emotions to the fore by reminding us of the emotional journey of our characters, before propelling us forward into unfamiliar territory.
“LOST” spoiler alert – you probably wont want to watch the two clips below if you haven’t seen the end of LOST but plan to!
LOST used a similar device in its final season to resonate the emotional context of the character’s remembering each other. Despite some disappointment about how the series finished, I can’t deny the impact that this had on my viewing experience.
The Fringe use of ‘flashes’ – though not designed to be quite as defining, or function on the same level – didn’t land as strongly for me. Partly because the images/memories lacked integration with Peter’s emotions – he doesn’t really respond to them – so it feels a bit disconnected, and they end up playing more for the audience.
That being said, it was still effective. I like how the second wave of memories flashes by more quickly as the tension mounts. And I find it poignant that Peter (who had been confused) was remembering these events – his life literally flashing before his eyes – moments before the BBM acted upon his frame of mind (or what have you). Ultimately, it seems he chose ‘Over Here’, even though it may (or may not) have resulted a merger of some kind.