TV Review: 'Fringe' Episode 402 - 'One Night in October'


Fringe Episode 402

"One Night in October"

Written By: Allison Schapker & Monica Owusu-Breen

Directed By: Brad Anderson

Original Airdate: 30 September 2011

In This Episode...

Broyles brings a case to Olivia's attention in which dozens of victims were found dead, chemically frozen from the inside out, and with what looked like some kind of port drilled into their skulls. Liv has never heard of this because this case comes from Over There. Fringe division had no clues until the guy, John McClellan, left a stray hair at one of the crime scenes. He was in the wind, and with an IQ of over 200,  it wasn't likely that they would find him without some help.

The plan is to bring "our" McClellan - a forensic psychology professor in our world - to the other universe in hopes that he may have some insight into where his alter ego might be. Not ready to tell civilians of the other universe, McClellan is drugged and brought to the other side. Fauxlivia takes point in her own world, and is sure to dress like our Olivia, complete with blonde hair. Everything is going well until McClellan sees a photo of his father and freaks out. Olivia must then sit down and (gently) explain to him what is going on. Our McClellan admits that something was always "wrong" with him, a darkness within him, just like Dexter's Dark Passenger. But our McClellan was able to control his dark urges. 

Both McClellans came from abusive homes. But our McClellan was taken in by a woman named Marjorie, who offered glimmers of hope and love and kept him from acting out his darkest fantasies. Their McClellan was not as lucky. He is now obsessed with trying to suck the happy memories out of peoples's heads and put them in his own. Our McClellan escapes FBI custody and goes looking for his doppelganger. When he finds him, our McClellan offers to show their McClellan the same kindness. Crazy McClellan hooks the two of them up to his happy memory machine. This time, it works.

By the time Fringe division finds the McClellans, ours is unconscious, having had Marjorie stripped from his memory. Now that theirs has the memory, he is capable of guilt and remorse - and kills himself in front of Olivia. Back on our side, McClellan is hospitalized and has large portions of his memory stripped away. The worry is that Marjorie was the only thing keeping him sane. After Olivia talks to him, the worry dissipates. He may not remember Marjorie, but he remembers what she taught him (cue less-than-subtle hint about Peter - including a dark, blurry figure standing in the background - likely the Observer). In addition to Broyles's pointed remarks about people who leave an indelible imprint on our souls, that night, as Walter tucks himself into bed, he is haunted by the voice of Peter whispering, "Walter. I'm right here, Walter."

Dig It or Bury It?

I really liked seeing the two sides work together. I hope we get to see that more because it offers an entirely new dynamic for the characters to play off of. Anna Torv plays the two Olivias with stunning subtlety that makes both Olivias different while still seeming like the same person.

Walter Babble

After four seasons, Walter has finally gotten Astrid's name down. So he needs a new name to mangle, and that name belongs to Lincoln Lee. This week, Walter called him "Kennedy."

In a World Without Peter...

I don't remember if this was brought up before Peter, but when Fauxlivia asks about Olivia's abusive stepfather, Olivia answers matter-of-factly: "I killed him."

In the Red Universe...

Yes, I know, it's no longer red vs. blue. In any case, "Over There," gas is only $0.99 per gallon, and the other Broyles is still alive.


An organism forms psychic bond with boys, mummifying them in a matter of hours. Are you sure this isn't the next episode of Law& Order: SVU?