With episode one in the books, it appears that Fringe has a lot of work to do. Coming into the season, I knew there was a great deal of world-building to be done, but I think I was a little bit naive about exactly how much world-building needed to be done. “Letters of Transit” may have set the stage for what was to come, but both the season five premiere and tonight’s episode continue to discuss the different elements at odds with each other while attempting to advance the plot. It’s quite a tall order for only thirteen episodes, but Fringe usually is entertaining while it attempts to piece together the necessary exposition to make the world make sense.
In tonight’s episode, “In Absentia,” the show does a nice job of building off of some of the ideas raised in the premiere. The primary issue that takes center stage is the moral ambiguity that war can create. Etta’s idea of the world as it is will be juxtaposed with her mother’s idea of how the world should be. Faced with a weighty decision, Etta will be forced to decide between her way and her mother’s.
While there are plenty of heavier moments in tonight’s episode, the upcoming episode also brings the fun back. Last week, everything seemed drab and depressing. However, it seems that the one little weed sticking out of the asphalt at the end of premiere has sparked Walter’s funny bone. Either that, or its the nostalgic return to Harvard (and a startling licorice revelation!) to retrieve some valuable information that has brought back the joy in Walter. Whatever the reason, Walter’s humor will provide a fun diversion from the doom and gloom that continues to hangover the renegade Fringe team.
Tonight’s episode is great for fans of the classic Fringe we have come to know and love while still interjecting some fresh moments. Make sure you are in front of your TV at 9 PM tonight to check out Fringe on Fox and be sure to come back TV Equals to see my full review that will post at the show’s conclusion. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts.