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Fringe": Twist and shout"

Season 3, Episode 16: The nefarious Fizzy Lifting Drinks provide just a prelude for the episode's crazy final twist

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  • Courtesy of Fox
  • WE GOT A FLOATER: Joshua Jackson, zero-g dead guy, John Noble

“Os” features one of the most ridiculous premises in “Fringe” history, but I wonder if it’s ridiculous like a fox. By devoting an episode to an initially intriguing, increasingly tenable mystery story about gravity-defying burglars, the episode doesn’t just suspend the mystery thieves from tethers like hot air balloons; it attempts to suspend viewers’ disbelief even further than usual. So, hopefully, the really ridiculous plot twist at the end of the episode won’t seem quite so preposterous. Does it work? Not really.

But boy, does it have a crazily fascinating first half. The introductory scene amusingly finds Walter swapping bong hits with a Massive Dynamic security guard played by Jorge Garcia. (It’s Hurley from “Lost!” Which Bad Robot alternate universe is this?) Walter’s discovery of William Bell’s office inspires him to redouble his efforts to think like he did when Bell and he were partners. I like the implication that both geniuses were more productive when they were together than separately — it’s like the idea that John Lennon and Paul McCartney’s post-Beatles work never equaled their fractious but fruitful collaboration. And Walter implies that he bedded Yoko — coincidence?

Next, we see some thieves scaling up the face of a building with ropes as they’re breaking in. Only the perspective’s fooling us: they’re actually scaling down the building, having already robbed it. They need super-heavy shoes to keep from floating away, and when a security guard shoots one of them, the body drifts out of the heavy boots and hangs literally at the end of the rope. It’s like Willy Wonka’s Fizzy Lifting Drinks used for nefarious purposes.