Fringe Episode 419: "Letters Of Transit" ~ Fringe Television - Fan Site for the FOX TV Series Fringe

Fringe Episode 419: "Letters Of Transit"

      Email Post       4/20/2012 06:00:00 PM      

Happy Fringe Friday!

The FRINGE tradition of a mind-bending 19th episode continues as the story jumps ahead to 2036, when the Observers and the Fringe team engage in a game-changing battle.
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After the episode airs, continue the discussion here in the comments, and get more Fringe information at the:
Check back here soon for Observer sightings, Glyph codes, and other Fringe Easter Eggs.

How do you rate the Fringe episode "Letters Of Transit"?


BonesFringeFan said...

I'm so confused. How come there's no Olivia?

cgregory said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cgregory said...

To Bonesfringefan-- I think she died. The bent bullet Etta wore as necklace was probably the bullet that killed Olivia. Also, the observer, September, said he had seen all possible futures and that she had to die. That's just my assumptions. Hopefully, she'll come back and re-write it!

Matthew M said...

I gave it 5 Stars but didn't care for the way it ended. "Henrietta" 'Etta', perfect. Yes Olivia is dead in that future and Etta carries the bullet that killed her as a necklace. I knew 'Etta' was Peter and Olivia's daughter by her mannerisms and expressions. Really an outstanding performance by Georgina Haig. I know we get to use our imaginations on how this timeline plays out but it should have been a 2 hour episode showing the destruction of the Observers. Great job of storytelling, thank you!

milostanfield said...

Whoa! Walter with ALL of his brain intact. Look out world.

5 out of 5 toes on a foot in a grave. No doubt about it.

Matthew M said...

Oh, that William Bell (Leonard Nimoy) killed Olivia for whatever reason we will never know, being an unknown timeline and all.

gnasty said...

Zepplin man from 319 killed her (probably in 2014)

Mosaic_Hyde said...

I see a beautiful time loop where Walter is both the cause of and the cure for the Observers and Olivia is one of the mothers. Etta (and Walter and Peter) might just be the antidote of the snake that bit humanity. We all know that anti-venom is made from venom. If this is what is planned then Fringe is a multi-generational Family Feud. :)

Anonymous said...

Somehow I don't think that bullet is what killed Olivia. If I was her daughter, not sure I'd enjoy remembering how she died. So it has to have come from something positive somehow.

Also, when her black market colleague told her there was a male and a female in amber, she got really excited and to me, it just seemed like she was looking for both her parents and not just her dad. I don't think she would have been excited about Astrid (not that anyone wouldn't).

AND, there's no way the writers would just kill Olivia off. That would NOT be the satisfactory ending they promised. So, I'm going to stay hopeful. :)

Irene said...

I totally agree with you! I have to go back and check, but did Walter ever remove the bullet that injured September? It could be from then... Also, if Olivia was dead, and "recently" in Peter's view, I don't think he would have been that calm in the train.

When I first saw Etta's necklace I thought it was the cross that Olivia had at one point given to Ella...

And what was that grave consequence Nina was talking about?!?!

TomInGV said...

Its too bad, I liked this quirky offbeat series, it had good writing the first few seasons with inventive ideas-- but PULEEZE, now the formerly guardian Observers are evil aliens bent on the domination of our dimension!? Did all the writers quit? Did they hire the new ones from the SyFy channel? Worst of all, they kill off the successful ensemble cast. Unforgivable, and no more will I waste time with this. Shark Bait.

pMaestro said...

Did anyone else notice that the code to enter Massive Dynamic was 092112 (which, incidentally, is a Friday if it referred to Sept 9, 2012) and the code to get Walter's brain was 052010 which corresponds to the finale of season 2? Coincidence or ...

DanM said...

Does this mean that William Bell is alive in the amber timeline of this series?

Betsy in Maine said...

Really, really hated this episode. I've loved the series from day one but Observers suddenly evil - WTF???? Then the Daddy dearest was just lame. Lose this stupid timeline and bring back Olivia.

Anonymous said...

Anna Torv was the first name on the opening credit and yet no Olivia. At all. But still a great episode! Looking forward to the 092112 code to Massive Dynamic. We all need Season 5, guys.

Unknown said...

Awesome episode, I love how the original fringe team is a legend to them. Also I'm not sure if I like this timeline... there are things like Nina being evil, and the fact that Walter has no memory or experiences of the past 3 seasons. As well as Walternate not being as bad anymore. It's depressing.

Anonymous said...

I generally don't like the name Henrietta, but still cool. Peter would be, like, 8 years older than her, if you don't count his time in amber. Spooky. And why kill off Olive? It's like the writers have a thing against her. And "TomInGV", if you are going to crap on the most amazing TV show, probably ever, than at least spell check. I found like ten grammatical errors.

Anonymous said...

I payed so much attention in the first three seasons just for Peter to be erased! Shucks!

Anonymous said...

Betsy, they were pretending to be nice. Basic logic, guys!

45 said...

@pointlessparanoia, and Joshua Jackson was second credited in the first four episodes and there was NO PETER, either. So what's your point?

It makes no sense that people are so bent out of shape over ONE Olivia-less episode while Josh/Peter wasn't in 8 EPISODES.

pMaestro said...

Seconding @45's post. Good lord, folks, stop getting your knickers all in a pointless twist. The actors listed in the opening credits have ALWAYS been the same for every episode (ie. Anna Torv is billed first followed by Joshua Jackson etc.) regardless of whether they appear in the episode or not. This is only the second episode in which Torv doesn't appear, the other being S2's Subject 13.

Look, these episodes have been shot and edited long before they actually air so let's just let the season and story play out, shall we? I think it's amazing that we, the fans, have so many platforms to voice our thoughts and opinions but it's not as if our comments about one episode is going to influence the producers to change the following episode. Let's remember that all of us love this show—viewers, cast, crew, and writers alike. Otherwise we wouldn't be having such intense feelings about these episodes, whether those feelings be positive or not.

whiskeymilkshake said...

To all the guys that whine about how the good observers turned out bad, guys you forget that the observers have always just appeared to ensure that things went towards a certain direction. We never knew what that direction was, they just didn't want the future to change. And perhaps September was intentionally seen by Walternate in order to change that future. Afterall he's the only observer that really helped our guys.

pMaestro said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
pMaestro said...

Actually, someone in another forum reminded me of the fact that we were given a huge hint about 4x19 waaaay back in Season 2 in the third episode, Fracture, where couriers with briefcases were being intercepted and assassinated by human bombs. Said couriers were delivering briefcases to ... the Observers! Colonel Gordon in that episode said that the enemy was among us and that they want to terminate us using our technology and science against us. Whoa! Talk about long term foreshadowing!! Take that, to all those who whinged about how pointless 4x19 was!

Zort70 said...

Fantastic episode, no question.

Out of the box brilliance, that coupled with the build up and teasers meant it was a really satisfying part of the story.

The only problem was it was far too short, an episode four times the length would not have been enought IMO.

I think my theory about DRJ being an observer kicked out of the order (think fallen angel) and is actually trying to do whatever it takes to save humanity is looking more likely !

mdtauk said...

Ok knowing about the foreshadowing, I am starting to wonder if "Letters of Transit" is the sowing of seeds for a spin off show? With "Fringe" ending with the self sacrifice of being sealed in amber...

Mallory said...

I'm really disgusted that we have fans like some of you complaining about how olivia isn't in one stinking episode! she's my favorite character too, but just because she's not in an episode, does that make me stop watching my favorite show!? heck no, I'm a faithful fan and will continue to be, that kind of crap is what will end the show!

fringeobsessed said...

To everyone posting negatively regarding 419 not fitting the mold:
Please remember, by definition, the 19th episode in each Fringe season has become an "anything goes" outlet for our 3 executive producers:Joel Wyman, Jeff Pinkner, and Akiva Goldsman, to exercise their creative muscle.

If you don't count "Unearthed" as episode 211(which always seemed weird to me to put it in here because Charlie died in 201 and yet he appears in "Unearthed"), "Brown Betty" would be 219, and,of course, "Lysergic Acid Diehtylamide" is 319. These are 2 great examples of our ep's having fun and raising the bar on the possibilites of where our beloved series could go. "Letters Of Transit" is no exception. It's like a special invitation to see "What If."

And yes, pMaestro, Colonel Gordon's lovely chat with Broyles in episode 303, "Fracture" seems like great foreshadowing for the world we saw this Friday.
Also, there aren't any coincidences in Fringe. I laughed when I saw the numbers on the paper. That code on the paper: 09 21 12 will be the Season 5 premiere date-make no mistake about that!

Personally, I found "Letters Of Transit" to be very, very interesting. Very different, but very interesting. It made me even hungrier for a S5, and I believe this was our ep's intent.

chillip said...

agreed on quality of the episode. everytime i think these guys are reaching i find that things fit in a context of their own creation.

i also agree this would ep would have benefited from another at least 20 minutes. a lot was packed into the 43-44 minutes.

really, i think, a well-crafted series. bravo, fringe folks, if you are reading.

and, 09-21-12 is, of course, a friday...

lsrx101 said...

God I HATE this show!!
But only because I have to wait a whole week to find out what is going to happen next. :)
At first, in Letters of Transit, I thought we may take a trip into the future for a few weeks without the characters we all know.
I'm still trying to wrap my head around the Observers being evil and taking over. But, like whiskeymilkshake mentioned, September was the only one who ever really interacted with "us".

Then came brain damaged Walter. "Fixing" him might be good drama for 2-3 episodes.
Then there was the "tender moment" between Etta and ol' what's his name that seemed to linger a bit too long.
I thought Fringe just might have jumped the shark, but I kept watching anyway.
By the end I'm saying "No, No, No, don't stop now!! What happens next???? They tied it together beautifully!
Sometimes I forget that I actually have to think, watch closely and remember past episodes when I watch Fringe. It's not just mindless drivel and "entertainment" like much on TV today.
It's a great mental workout. And the writers and actors are doing an excellent job of leading it.

lsrx101 said...

chillip made the point that I was aiming for:
"everytime i think these guys are reaching i find that things fit in a context of their own creation."

I also wonder about: "09-21-12 is, of course, a friday...". Could this be a hint of a Season 5?
I sure hope so.
We almost lost Fringe after, what was it, Season 2 when the ratings (supposedly)lagged? Then the move to the Friday time slot(basically the death slot).
I wonder if Fox is playing along with the producers to maximize the "mental roller coaster ride" of Fringe to it's loyal viewers?
A very popular show on Friday night might lure viewers to other lagging shows surrounding it.
Just a thought.

BonesFringeFan said...

I really just hope Olivia doesn't actually die, although that is the only explanation for there being no Olivia in this episode... And the William Bell/Olivia thing.. Still killing Olivia is not a satisfactory ending, and I really hope the writers don't go down that road. We've already seen that happen in the s3 finale and that was heartbreaking enough as it was. Also, if Etta was 3 or 4 in 2015 when the observers took over, that means Olivia must be pregnant now!! You cannot kill her off after she has the baby. We want to see our Olivia being the amazing mother we all know she will be!

chillip said...

it's most likely that if fringe can get to season 5 then it will be all about getting olivia back.

rolling back to the drawing on the fridge...

call season 5 "a long(er) story about love"?

Briar said...

Let's not forget that Colonel Gordon was a profoundly evil person, who lied to his human bombs and who did not care that their detonations killed indiscriminately. If terrorists are to be our heroes in a new War of the Observers series, I shan't be watching. Our heroes stand for law and order, not terrorism. Also, the idea of the Observers being the bad guys loses one of the cooler aspects of the show. There have been so many alien invasion stories where the black and white of human versus alien was taken for granted and the plots churned out one predictable cliche after another. Fringe, as ever, challenged our preconceptions by presenting its "aliens" not as the enemy, and not as a friend, but in the philosophically challenging position of neutral observer. I should be very sorry to see this clever riff on a too familiar tune changed.

fringeobsessed said...

"I really just hope Olivia doesn't actually die.."

I was picking up my notes off the floor from last summer's 65 episode review and something Ella said to Walter in "Brown Betty" caught my attention:

Ella: She can't be dead.
WALTER: Why not?
ELLA: Because that's not how stories work. She's in love -- true love. She can't die.

I have said many times that "Brown Betty," so far, is the mother of all Fringe foreshadowing, so, perhaps young Ella is speaking the truth?

SheHateMeBro said...

She won't die on the show since that is beyond when the show will run, but chances are they will leave that fate in place. The point of introducing Etta is to show that Olivia lives on through her. Whether there is another season or not, the future has been previewed, and she and Walter, Peter and Astrid will carry on as a team.. and maybe Simon if they can get him out of there.

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