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Moment of Goodness

Fringe Moment of Goodness: Walter Learns Consequences of His Actions 

Photo Credit: Liane Hentscher/FOX

This Moment of Goodness really snuck up on me. In an episode that was filled with many great scenes, this one stood out to me the most. I’m a sci-fi geek and the topic of timelines and the effects of interfering in the natural order of a timeline has been fodder for many sci-fi series and movies, e.g. Timecop with Jean-Claude Van Damme.

The Observer explains to Walter that there are innumerable consequences stemming from the act of saving Peter’s life. He tells Walter a story about Peter catching a firefly on a particular day and how this firefly was supposed to be caught by a little girl. And when she doesn’t catch one, she goes looking for a firefly in the rain. Her father starts searching for her. It turns out that he runs through an intersection in the rain and hits a pedestrian. As The Observer is telling this story, I was riveted by it but didn’t realize how significant this would be until later in the hour.

In an extremely poignant scene between Walter and his idol, Roscoe Jones, we learn the true implication of The Observer’s tale. As Roscoe tells the story of his son Bobby’s death, it slowly dawned on me who the pedestrian was. The look on Walter’s face as Roscoe recounts this was so sad. I was tearful throughout this scene the two men shared. Walter has moved heaven and earth to save his son but as a result, he caused another man, a man he idolized for his musical talent, to lose his only son. I was so moved by how this was revealed in the scene. In past episodes, Walter has acknowledged that there have been ripple effects from his actions. This was on such a small scale, that the seemingly harmless act like catching a firefly can create monumental consequences. Fringe‘s “The Firefly” was designed to help Walter learn to accept a difficult lesson. Time will tell if the lesson actually registered.

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