Peter uses his new skills to trap the Observers, while Walter and Olivia unearth two of the mysterious drilling cylinders.
Fringe—in its new paradigm—is slowly improving, with this the best of a rather indifferent run of episodes. Peter begins to draw upon the new powers of precognition his Observer implant has given him, but the cost looks to be high. As well as beginning to talk and move like an Observer, he’s also losing his hair in clumps, suggesting he’ll soon look like one, too.
As Peter is changing, Walter calls upon the aged Nina Sharpe to help him change back: he wants to remove again the parts of his brain that make him callous and uncaring. It’s a nice juxtaposition between father and son, and is at the centre of one of this season’s more absorbing episodes.
The loser in all this seems to be Olivia, who fears she’s losing Peter so soon after the death of their daughter, Etta. Anna Torv plays many scenes here with little or no dialogue, but communicates her character’s growing anguish skilfully.
A blow is struck against the Observers, suggesting Peter may become a potent weapon in the fight against them, but will those around him still recognise him once the seemingly necessary transformation is complete?
Verdict: There were flashes of the old Fringe here, as well as a welcome reappearance of the mysterious cylinders.
Episode 7 ‘Five-Twenty-Ten’: 7/10
Brian J. Robb