Fringe: Season 2, Episode 20

Brown Betty (29 Apr. 2010)

TV Episode  |  TV-14  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 1,457 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 4 critic

While Walter deals with some very upsetting news, he tells Olivia's niece, Ella, a fairy tale that includes musical performances by Olivia and Agent Broyles.



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Episode complete credited cast:
September / Gemini
Rachel / Kelsie
Candus Churchill ...
Dead Singer / Corpse #3
Nurse (as Sarah Ann Hayward)
Tom Pickett ...
Dead Singer / Corpse #1
Dead Singer / Corpse #2
Erica Van Briel ...


While Walter deals with some very upsetting news, he tells Olivia's niece, Ella, a fairy tale that includes musical performances by Olivia and Agent Broyles. Written by FOX Publicity

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis






Release Date:

29 April 2010 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Interestingly, during this musical episode, the two regular cast members of Fringe (2008) who have the most Broadway musical experience do not ever sing. Blair Brown (Nina) has had singing roles in Broadway productions of "The Threepenny Opera" and "Cabaret." And Michael Cerveris (The Observer/September) is better-known as a Broadway leading man than as a television or film actor; he has had lead roles in Broadway musicals such as "The Who's Tommy," "Titanic," "Assassins," "Sweeney Todd," "Lovemusik," and "Evita"; was nominated for Tonys for all but one of these; and won a Tony for "Assassins." See more »


When Dunham (in Walter's tale) goes into Rachel's apartment to find Rachel dead, her right eye is open/closed between shots. See more »


Peter Bishop: Seems we're not the same. I don't dance.
Olivia Dunham: [Disappointed] Oh.
Peter Bishop: I'd take you though.
Olivia Dunham: [Surprised] You would?
Peter Bishop: Yeah.
Peter Bishop: Seems like it'd be fun.
See more »


References Top Secret! (1984) See more »


Blue Moon
Written by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart
Performed by Ella Fitzgerald
Also danced by Joshua Jackson and Anna Torv
See more »

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User Reviews

Shame, SHAME on Fringe Fans and Critics.
14 May 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Because this episode was exactly what we needed after the tension of "The Man from The Other Side"-Plus Very large amounts of KUDOS to The Fringe Writers and Producers for even doing something like this.

Walter has to reflect on his decision not to tell Peter earlier that he had been taken from "the other side" - Would Peter still have left had Walter told him earlier? And now, Walter's greatest fear has been realized - Peter is GONE.

This Episode is a representational peep into Walter's Brain. If anyone needs a VISUAL representation of how Walter's mind works - Then this is it. The Episode begins with the trademark Steve Howe guitar work for Yes' "Roundabout"- And Walter taking a hit of his "Brown Betty" marijuana. So Begins our trip into Bishop's Brain.

Olivia's niece Ella (Lily Pilblad) is there. Walter does not know it yet, but she is there to comfort him. They are two Children, playing, and swapping stories.

So Walter fabricates the story of himself and Peter, for Ella who's presence allows him to bring it to a focus.

All along, we have been told how Walter, when he is asking for a piece of food, or a particular piece of Music, uses that to bring what he is trying to remember into his conscious mind. Walter's use of Psychotropic and Other Drugs adds a layer of surreality to this process.

This Episode is a graphical, musical representation of what goes on in every episode of Fringe.

And when we get inside - The Style of this Episode is dashing, smart and nostalgic. It is "Musical Noir": It's New York Theatre. And Astrid and Anna Sing! As do Walter's Corpses.

Silly? Yes, You Bet! But Ella shows Walter that his perception of himself is not correct - Walter sees himself as the "Bad Guy" of the story, and his ending to it is not unlike so many of those Mike Hammer movies form the 50's. Ella has no patience for those kinds of stories, so she makes up a "better ending" for it - And I admit I like hers more. As it turns out, hers was the correct ending.

And so this episode gives us a false glimmer of hope - Nobody knew what was going to happen after this, suffice it to say that if Peter running off was bad, it was go get even worse very soon. This was the Dawn before the Dark, but even that darkness was not to endure. This was the lull between the 1st and 2nd season MythArcs and the 3rd and 4th.

22 of 28 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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