Fringe: Amber 31422   Rewatch 
April 12, 2015 1:44 AM - Season 3, Episode 5 - Subscribe

Olivia takes the red pill. Flies in amber can't get out, can they? A short history of amber. An earth-shattering kaboom. Good twin, bad twin. A brief holiday. More red pills and childhood reminiscences. The plot thickens. "Only you can save yourself." Snowglobes and a birthday phone call.
posted by Athanassiel (8 comments total)
One thing that bothers me is this...why is the Peter who appears to Olivia over there somewhat overbearing and creepy...almost stalkerish? He seems that way until the car conversation at the end of this ep.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 9:06 PM on April 12, 2015

I always thought that the Peter she sees talking to her is actually part of herself. It just looks like Peter because she knows that he's one of the most, if not the most, compelling reason for her to get back to her own universe. And Olivia is pretty bossy to herself, doesn't let herself get away with much. Like many of us.

I find the bits where she universe-hops into the gift shop disproportionately creepy and compelling. They have that dream-like urgency and surreality. Some of my favourite little moments.
posted by Athanassiel at 9:55 PM on April 12, 2015 [1 favorite]

Oh, I agree with your assessment of where that version of Peter springs's just weird to me that the version in her head springing forth isn't the best version of Peter because she very clearly has major feelings for him.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 10:57 PM on April 12, 2015

For some reason I get irrationally pissy when the mom blames the kid for breaking the snowglobe. Lay off lady...he's like 8 feet away.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 10:59 PM on April 12, 2015

Hmm, I know what you mean - but she doesn't need the mushy, loving, breakfast-in-bed-cooking Peter that she can really only imagine at this point anyway, since it's Fauxlivia who's getting all the love. She needs someone tough who's watching, observing, assessing - and, until she starts listening, harassing her to listen, being a bit of a bully. Fortunately, she is that person. And hey, just had a thought - maybe they're taking the form of Peter because she's having so many intrusive thoughts of him, the way you do when you're newly in lerv.

I don't know, I'm just speculating madly here! The creepiness of seeing someone in your head actually outside your head though, just seems like it would undo whatever good it would do. It would make you doubt your own sanity and not listen to yourself - which, of course, is exactly what happens. It's interesting. Later on (S4? Can't remember exactly) when they all start having hallucinations of Peter it's really interesting too how she and Walter react totally differently. Maybe this experience is priming her for that one.

And yes, that mum was totally unfair. Poor kid.
posted by Athanassiel at 1:11 AM on April 13, 2015

Over and over again we return to the themes of identity and loss. Twins, switched. Shapeshifters taking place of our loved ones, mimicking them. Fauxlivia. Even Milo - is he still 'Milo' after taking the intelligence enhancing drug?
Is Peter "Peter," Walternate's son? Is Walter with the pieces of his brain restored "Walter"?

What makes us - us?
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:25 PM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

As we see in Marionette, we can't rely on our loved ones to define us (or even recognise us) either, because they can be fooled. Olivia can almost be fooled too, as long as she keeps taking the red pills.

It's shaky territory at best, all of it. We are very fragile creatures.
posted by Athanassiel at 8:06 PM on April 29, 2015

Hallucinatory Peter reminds me of the ghost of Nate in the last season of Six Feet Under—Brenda's version of him in particular. It's clearly an aspect of internal personality, projected outwards into another, apparently external body.

I love how much steadily more malign and Nazi doctorish alterna-Brandon gets the more we see of him. The corruptibility of the intelligent technician in the belly of the authoritarian regime.
posted by Sonny Jim at 5:30 AM on December 20, 2015

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