FRINGE 4.17 ‘Everything In Its Right Place’

Lincoln teams up with the alternate Fringe team for a case that may hold the key to bringing down David Robert Jones.

Blair Marnellby Blair Marnell

Episode Title: "Everything In Its Right Place"

Story by: J. R. Orci & Matt Pitts

Teleplay by: David Fury & J. R. Orci

Director: David Moxness

Previously on "Fringe":

Episode 4.16: "Nothing As It Seems"

Story:

Lincoln Lee (Seth Gabel) arrives at the lab for another day of insanity on the Fringe team, only to find FBI Agent Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv), Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson) and his father, Dr. Walter Bishop (John Noble) preparing to take Gene the cow for her monthly grazing day. Before they leave, Olivia gives Lincoln a necklace with the name of his old partner, Robert Danzig engraved on it. Hurt, Lincoln realizes that Olivia no longer remembers that he gave the necklace to her as reminder that it symbolized finding a home and family.

When Astrid Farnsworth (Jasika Nicole) complains about ruining her plans with her father to visit the alternate universe and brief them on David Robert Jones' latest activities, Lincoln volunteers to go in her place and he convinces Phillip Broyles (Lance Reddick) to sign off on it. In the alternate world, a mugger (Tim Guinee) attacks a woman by her car when a man named Canaan arrives and kills him first. As Lincoln arrives in the other universe, the alternate Olivia (hereafter referred to as Fauxlivia) tells him that there is a slight change in plans as she drives him to see the mugger's body.

As they travel through the city, Fauxlivia notes that the Bridge between the two worlds seems to be healing the rifts and allowing the alternate Earth to reopen the Ambered zones. At the crime scene, the alternate Lincoln (whom we'll call Captain Lee) shows them the mugger's warped body and notes that this is the first time that the vigilante killer hasn't taken his victim with him. At a homeless shelter, Canaan now looks just like the mugger as he removes boxes from an abandoned church. Unfortunately for him, Canaan soon has to flee when two inspectors stumble upon his hideout and find all of the dead bodies that he stashed.

Called in to investigate the bodies in the church, Fauxlivia tries to reschedule Lincoln's debrief, but he insists upon assisting the alternate team on the current case. Lincoln is also stunned to learn that he and his teammates on our world are considered heroes for helping to heal the alternate universe. At a homeless shelter, Canaan finds temporary sanctuary and unexpected kindness. But Canaan is forced to flee when his body begins breaking down. At the church, Lincoln suspects that the killer is one of David Robert Jones' new breed of shapeshifters who were once human.

Focusing on one of Canaan's female victims, Lincoln and the alternate Astrid (aka Kick-Astrid) find evidence that the woman was spotted days after her death. However, Colonel Broyles doesn't buy Lincoln's theory about shapeshifters and he orders him to return to his universe. Elsewhere, Antonio Dawes (Antonio Dawes) and his friend Mikey (Nelson Leis) are getting high until Canaan kills Antonio and takes his face. But Mikey sees everything and he alerts the Fringe division. Before Lincoln is escorted away by Fauxlivia, he suggests putting an alert out on the victim, Antonio. And sure enough, there's a hit.

Lincoln accompanies Captain Lee, Fauxlivia and their team to an area where Canaan was spotted. Lincoln leads the men with him in pursuit of Canaan, but Canaan disarms Lincoln and has him dead to rights before sparing his life. The alternate Fringe team soon surrounds Canaan and he reluctantly surrenders. At Fringe Division, Broyles congratulates the team and then secretly alerts the alternate Nina Sharp (Blair Brown). "Mean-a" assigns an assassin to kill Canaan as he is being escorted from the scene.

Fauxlivia allows Lincoln some time to speak with Canaan and realizes that Canaan was only targeting criminals to save his life from breaking down, but Canaan is convinced that Jones will help fix him. On the way out, the assassin narrowly misses Canaan with his first sniper shot before Fauxlivia takes him out with a nearly impossible shot of her own. In the chaos, Captain Lee is hit, but he assures his counterpart and Fauxlivia that he's lived through worse. He's more concerned about who tipped off the assassin to their route. Lincoln then confronts Canaan and browbeats him into cooperating against Jones.

The assassin returns to Mean-a and says that Fauxlivia nearly killed him, but in reality it's Canaan wearing the assassin's face as the Fringe Division storms Mean-a's compound and quickly captures her. But there's bad news back at the base: Captain Lee has succumbed to his wounds and died, which devastates Fauxlivia. Now, there is only one Lincoln Lee for two universes. Some time later, Lincoln escorts Canaan back to his world and introduces him to Peter and Walter, whom Lincoln insists might be able to help Canaan survive. Lincoln also gives Canaan the necklace that Olivia returned to Lincoln earlier.

In the alternate world, Fauxlivia grieves for her fallen partner as she goes through his locker. She notes that her Lincoln kept a lot of pictures of the two of them together when our Lincoln comes to her. Lincoln apologizes for not thinking it through, but he offers to stay in the alternate universe a while longer to help out the alternate Fringe team. And it's an offer that Fauxlivia quickly agrees to.

Breakdown:

Everything and everyone theoretically have their own place in this world. But for Lincoln Lee, his place may literally be on another world.

After last week's episode of "Fringe," I noted that the episode trailer on Fox was more ominous than usual and I successfully predicted that one of the Lincoln Lees was likely to die. It seems like an extreme step to take until you consider that this may be the final season of "Fringe," barring a deal that brings "Fringe" back for a short run of 13 episodes at best. That means that the creative team of this show can take chances like killing off the alternate Lincoln Lee… who may have been more popular than his regular universe counterpart.

Alternate Lincoln was introduced to the series first and for several fans, he is THE Lincoln Lee. Between the two Lincolns, the alternate Lincoln seemed like a much more complete version of himself. And that's why if one of them had to die, it was always going to be the alternate Lincoln. Aside from finally wooing Fauxlivia, there wasn't a lot of room for the alternate Lincoln to grow or change. Our Lincoln has plenty of room to evolve and given enough time, he could potentially resemble his counterpart in both personality and appearance.

I wouldn't be shocked if that gradually happens, because Prime Lincoln clearly wanted to be more like his counterpart. Their conversations were interesting in that neither of them could figure out where their histories diverged to make them so different from each other. Lincoln also had some sharp scenes with Canaan where he listened to the shapeshifter speak about being unmemorable and unimportant to the world around him… feelings which seemed to haunt Lincoln in our world as he desperately wanted to get away from watching Olivia, Peter and Walter bond as a family unit.

It's not that Lincoln was begrudging them their happiness, he just felt displaced by it. Putting Lincoln in the alternate universe gives him a second chance at winning Olivia's heart and it may be the thing that ultimately makes Lincoln happy. This may be a unique solution to the Peter/Olivia,/Fauxlivia and Peter/Olivia/Lincoln love triangles by pairing Fauxlivia and Lincoln together. It's almost ideal and all it cost us was one of the best characters on the show.

On a side note, this season has had an alarming lack of Walternate, who appears only briefly via video footage. I believe that Walternate will have a bigger role in next week's episode, but it seems odd to sideline such a fascinating creation. But then again, that decision was probably made to build up David Robert Jones as the new villain for the series.

There's something comforting about the idea that the alternate universe is starting to heal thanks to the Bridge between the two worlds. It shows that Peter's sacrifice wasn't in vain and that both universes may be able to survive and thrive. I don't think that placing our Lincoln in the alternate universe means that he's being written out for any length of time. Instead, I think it means we'll be seeing a lot more of the alternate universe as the season winds down.

It's impressive how this episode seemed like another freak of the week, but quickly became one of the more pivotal installments of the season. In addition to the death of alternate Lincoln, it actually dealt with the alternate Nina and didn't let her slither away in an unsatisfactory or cheap way. The show is still being somewhat cagey about whether Colonel Broyles is a shapeshifter or if he's just simply in Jones' pocket. I half expected the alternate Lincoln to wake up somewhere else as Jones turned him into a shapeshifter. That may not be completely out of the question, since we never actually saw alternate Lincoln die. It's just what we were told.

If this episode didn't get you excited for the rest of the season, then nothing will. "Fringe" appears to be back on track to close out the year on a high note.