Fringe Episode Recap: "Grey Matters" Season 2, Episode 10


Walter Bishop has always been one of the central characters to Fringe. This is hardly a revelatory statement. But as the series has progressed it becomes more and more apparent that he may be the central figure of the series the one on which the mythology of the series hinges. This episode, in which the team investigates three mental patients' sudden rehabilitation, only underlines that fact as it shows how important Walter is to the enemy as well as the good guys.


"Grey Matters" opened with a few familiar faces namely Thomas Jerome Newton, whose head had just been reacquainted with his shoulders last we saw him. Newton and his cohorts perform a gruesome little operation on one Mr. Slater, removing something from his brain before rushing off. We soon came to learn that whatever this operation was, it cured Mr. Slater of his severe schizophrenia that he had suffered from for 14 years. The team traces Mr. Slater's history and finds that he was admitted by a Dr. Paris, who has completely disappeared. When they investigate two of Paris' other patients, they find that they too had very recently been "cured" of their severe mental disorders. Walter posits that the three patients had brain tissue stored in their brains to keep it viable, but whose brain tissue could it be? Well, even more digging into Paris reveals that he visited Walter six times while he was at St. Claire's (something not even Peter managed to do in 14 years) and, of course, it was Walter's brain tissue being stored in these other patients.


Peter and Olivia quickly realize that these pieces of Walter's brain are where his memories of opening the door to Earth-2 reside, and that Newton is trying to get back. Unfortunately they don't act quickly enough, and Walter is taken by Newton before they can stop him. Newton and company try to extract Walter's memory but soon realize they need to do so in a familiar place to him. So, they take him back to the house where he originally hatched the plan to open the door to the other dimension. They achieve their goal, but not before Peter and Olivia can catch up with them. Of course, Newton has prepared for such a situation and leaves Olivia with a choice: save Walter from the poison he injected him with or arrest Newton and leave Walter to die.


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