Fringe (2008–2013)
9.4/10
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15 user 6 critic

An Enemy of Fate 

As the Observers close in, Walter and September desperately work to complete the plan, but one obstacle after another hinders their progress.

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(created by), (created by) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Anil
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Observer on Street #2
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Young Resistance Fighter
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Loyalist Driver in Hummer (as Bruce Macnab Crawford)
Charlie Gallant ...
Loyalist Guard at Desk
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Young Etta
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Butterfly Observer
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Loyalist Guard in Hummer #2 (as Howard Lai)
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Storyline

September asks December to bring an initiating reactor to complete the time machine. Then he meets Walter, Peter, Olivia and Astrid and explains how the device works. Peter finds a farewell video tape from Walter addressed to him. Olivia and Astrid go to December's apartment to bring the initiating reactor but they find him hanged and the part taken by Loyalists and The Observers. Astrid suggests to use an Observer shipping lane instead. Olivia and Peter go to the Observer's headquarters and use chemical gas to retrieve a control cube to use the shipping lane. They also rescue Broyles that was interrogated by Windmark. Now they start to set in motion the plan to defeat The Observers. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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TV-14 | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

18 January 2013 (USA)  »

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16:9 HD
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Last show of the series. See more »

Goofs

In an earlier show, the Fringe team pursued a man who could make paraplegics float using an osmium solution that worked only due to the unraveling of the two universes. Walter then said in the next season that the universes had healed themselves, thereby the laws of physics were once again intact. Because of this, Walter's osmium-tipped bullets shouldn't have made the Observers float when they were shot. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Walter Bishop: It's a beautiful name.
Astrid Farnsworth: What is?
Dr. Walter Bishop: Astrid.
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Soundtracks

Fringe Main Title Theme
(uncredited)
Written and Performed by J.J. Abrams
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User Reviews

Season 5: Solid standalone season - I enjoyed it for what it was, even if I wished it was something else
23 April 2013 | by See all my reviews

I started season 5 a while after I finished the fourth season, but not so long that the noise of those weak last few episodes were not still in my memory; you know the ones – where the characters all act out of character, where Olivia shadow-boxes through Peter, where an episode suddenly jumps into the Observer-controlled future etc. Up till that point the fourth season had been mostly good for me, not quite as good as the few before, but still delivering what I had come to really enjoy about the show. Specifically this was the characters having plenty of smaller moments within the bigger frame of the overall plot and I enjoyed it a great deal that these moments became a part of the story, not just moments within the flow. Season 5 doesn't really manage to keep that and although it has moments, they tend to be isolated moments rather than integrated.

To give it its due, the plot is ambitious. The team have ambered themselves at some point and what remains of a resistance against the Observers have released them in order to action a plan that Walter had devised. Unfortunately this plan has been removed from his brain so the team must recover a series of videotapes that Walter had made to lead them to the parts needed. This is essentially the plot of the season, allowing gradual progress through this plot while filling in with other characters and incidental action which stems from the main. I came into this plot/universe expecting to really hate it (based on how I had felt about it in season 4) but I was pleased to find that I didn't because, as a standalone season, it actually works pretty well. It gives one big storyline to finish the show, it gives closure to a lot of the characters and it doesn't really produce a bad episode as it does it. So why did I not enjoy it as much as previous seasons?

I think the issue for me was that the moral complexity of a lot of the ideas wasn't there and nor was there the same sense of the characters being complex in terms of their ethics and morals. Instead we got this massive standalone plot where most of the action was isolated "quests" which don't so much move the story alone as fill out the story to 13 episodes. For sure they are professionally done, slick and engaging, but there isn't much to be excited about and there certainly isn't anything as good about the characters as before. The series finale has some content that is moving and linked to past "sins" and relationships, but not enough – and it isn't delivered in a manner that is as strong as it should be.

The cast still do a good job but they, like the viewer, seem to be coasting on the investment in the characters that has come over the past 4 seasons rather than what they do in this one. Torv is a bit lost in this season, she doesn't make too much of an impact beyond being all action. Likewise Jackson has less to do, although he does do good work when he gets the chance – even if his implant subplot is a stretch. As before though, the star is Noble and fortunately he is better here than he was in the "future" episode in season 4. Here he has the same comic touches and, occasionally, the guilt and conflict that made him such a great character – just not enough. Nicole is great in support and it was nice to have appearances from Brown, Reddick and others to help tie up some characters in a way that isn't totally satisfactory but isn't too bad.

Overall this fifth and final season of Fringe isn't up to the standard of what went before even if it does function well enough as a well- paced, quest-driven standalone season. It mostly lacks the heart, complexity and character that the show had previously done so well and in a way it is a shame that it ends thus. Of course with budget cuts and an enforced end date, I guess it was always going to be a struggle but it is still a shame. That said, it is still well enough made and has enough built-in investment from viewers to do the job and I enjoyed it for what it was – even if I wished it was something else.


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