Fringe (2008–2013)
3 user 5 critic

The Road Not Taken 

The Fringe team investigate a case of spontaneous human combustion. Olivia starts experiencing visions of the alternate Universe. She uses this ability to solve the case.


J.J. Abrams (created by), Alex Kurtzman (created by) | 4 more credits »

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Episode cast overview:
Anna Torv ... Olivia Dunham
Joshua Jackson ... Peter Bishop
Lance Reddick ... Phillip Broyles
Kirk Acevedo ... Charlie Francis
Blair Brown ... Nina Sharp
Jasika Nicole ... Astrid Farnsworth
John Noble ... Dr. Walter Bishop
Michael Cerveris ... The Observer
Jennifer Ferrin ... Susan Pratt / Nancy Lewis
Michael Gaston ... Sanford Harris
Clint Howard ... Emmanuel Grayson
Frank Bonsangue ... Bus Driver
Richard Bekins ... Isaac Winters
Cheryl Sarkaria ... Tech Agent (as Cheryl Ann Leaser)
Ignacio Rada Ignacio Rada ... ND Agent


When a woman bursts into flames and explodes, Olivia and Peter start to look into it, and Olivia starts seeing things -- which Walter explains as possibly her seeing an alternate reality. The investigation leads back to the experiment Olivia was part of as a child, and points to a high member of the FBI as well as links to Massive Dynamic. Meanwhile Nina comes to Broyles with her concern that The Observer has been sighted again, and frequently. Written by Ron Kerrigan <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-14 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

5 May 2009 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In 1966, when Clint Howard was seven years old, he guest-starred on Star Trek (1966) in the episode Star Trek: The Corbomite Maneuver (1966), as Balok, an intelligent but lonely being with a childlike appearance who tests the Enterprise crew. Howard later made guest appearances on Trek spin-offs Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1993) and Star Trek: Enterprise (2001). See more »


At the beginning when Walter is showing Peter and Olivia the comparison of the typewriter and the Manifesto, the "y"'s are not the same style. See more »


Dr. Walter Bishop: Most of us experience life as a-a linear progression,
[drawing a straight line]
Dr. Walter Bishop: just like this. But this is an illusion because every day, life presents us with an array of choices. As a result, life should look more like this.
[drawing lines that are not straight]
Dr. Walter Bishop: And each choice... leads to a new path. To go to work. to stay home. And each choice we take creates a new reality.
See more »


References Frankenstein (1931) See more »


Fringe Main Title Theme
Written by J.J. Abrams
See more »

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User Reviews

The Children from Jacksonville
11 January 2017 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

In New York, a young woman in panic takes a bus to a hospital, but she cannot support the heat and leaves it. On the sidewalk, she has spontaneous combustion and blows up. The Fringe Division is assigned to investigate the case. Olivia sees two burned women instead of one and has weird visions, and Dr. Bishop explains that she might be seeing a parallel universe. Soon they find that the woman was a subject of a ZFT experiment and Olivia discovers through her abilities that she has a twin sister. When the Fringe Division tracks her down, the team discovers that she was abducted. Peter uses an invention of his own and they discover that the abductor called Harris by phone. Now the FBI is chasing Harris, who is the responsible for the crimes. Will the Fringe Division arrive on time to save the woman?

So far, "The Road Not Taken" is one of the best (if not the best) episodes of Fringe. The discovery of other children from Jacksonville that have abilities as the result of the experiment they were submitted with the substance "Cortexiphan" is promising. The mystery behind the Observer increases and what would be the connection with Dr. Bishop? Last but no the least, the end of the annoying Harris is a plus in this great series. My vote is nine.

Title (Brazil): "The Road Not Taken"

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