'Fringe' sneak peek and contest: Your best guess about Walter Bishop's mystery note

Fringe fans craving even a small glimpse into the future that is tomorrow night need not break into Walter Bishop’s Harvard lab and switch on his high-tech AlternaWorld-o-Vision to do so … especially since it wouldn’t work, because it peeks into parallel worlds, not the future. I mean, duh! (Damn how this show inspires me to the most convoluted sentences.) Just look at the photo at right. Walter Bishop and Nina Sharp are reading a note. Context? All I know is what I was told by the bald guy with hot sauce stains on his suit who dropped the photo off at my office: “On a rare visit to the Harvard campus, Nina and Walter take a trip down memory lane and reminisce about the good ol’ days when they let curiosity be their guide. This leads to a discussion about Peter’s ongoing investigation (much to Walter’s dismay) about that doomsday machine …” (My source — usually more of a strong, silent type — was in an uncommonly chatty mood, so I’m very appreciative for his scoop!)

I know, know. Your mind: Buh-lowwwwn. But quick! Scrape your bloody gray matter off the wall and remold it into the high-powered theory-making super-computer it once was because I would like to play a game with you. The piece of paper that Walter is reading: What’s on it? Here are your options. I am told that one of these answers is actually correct.

Provocative possibilities! Fringe fans should be able to see the plausibility — or the humor — in all of them. After you vote, scroll down and offer your own guess of the exact message on the paper — word for word. It could be a legit speculation; it could be your own stab at Fringe humor. Think of it was Matchgame or The New Yorker’s cartoon caption context, Fringe style. Finish the sentence: “The note says, … [Fill in the blank.]” The best guesses — as voted on by a select group of Fringe fans here on staff at EW (or just me) — will get a shout-out in tomorrow’s “On The Fringe” column, in which I’ll have some exclusive scoop on the episode. Until then: Your best guess — GO.

Fringe theories? Send ‘em: docjensenew@gmail.com
Fringe questions you want me tackle? @ewdocjensen

Comments (89 total) Add your comment
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  • samara

    Wish we could see a flashback episode with young Walter, young Nina and young William Bell in their glory days at Harvard. (or even a whole spinoff show…)

    • tracy bluth


      • Seddie Forever!!!!!!!!!

        NO. Backstories are rarely handled well, somethings are better left to the imagination, I present the Star Wars prequels as exhibits A,B,and C.

      • tracy bluth

        Did you not enjoy “Peter”? That was a backstory and it’s one of my favorite episodes.

    • 1gypsy

      It’s actual a new recipe for killer hot sauce from The Observer!

    • estelle

      just started watching fringe season 1 & i am only @ episode 9, so my theory may already be evident to others to be incorrect. i think walter & nina are peters actual parents or that nina is olivia’s real mother.would LOVE that spinoff

  • Anjali

    Looking forward to the scene between Walter and Nina!

  • Ayn

    The note could be anything really… is it conceivable that the contents of the note could change, based on what may or may not happen in the parallel universe? OR… as a reuslt of the Observer intervening? Whatever it may be right now, I think it’s not going to be the same when they do the big reveal.

  • Mike

    The note says, “Not Olivia’s Boat”

    • Jeff Jensen



      i’m not apart of the EW staff so i know my opinion doesn’t mean much, but this should win by default!

    • tracy bluth

      I’m not even going to try to come up with a clever thing that the note says now…WIN.

    • Stef

      That was awesome Mike. Now I can’t think of anything better for my own guess of what’s in the note!

      • brooklynroxie

        Awesome response!

    • Dicazi


    • Leah

      Aww I wrote not penny’s boat before reading the comments first. You win sir/madam

    • bogusu

      LMAO THAT is obviously the winner by a majority vote. Even the real Olivia would laugh at that! :-D

  • Zombie Jesus

    I love this show. Yes EW, promote it like you did Lost and I won’t have to have a pit in my stomache everytime I see the Thursday night ratings.

    • Zombie Jesus

      Apologies for the speling. I’m at work and today must be “Let’s see what Jesus is doing at his desk” day.

      • Lisa

        The note says, “Nina, Peter is your son”.

        (This is a theory I have had since watching the first season of Fringe on DVD and I am DYING for it to be true!!!)

  • Vanth

    The note says, “Walter, (insert mechanical breathing here)I am your father!” Signed….Belly.

  • psb1962

    i bet it’s from olivia from over there, saying help me!!

  • Abby

    The note says “She’s not me.”

  • Holly

    The note says that Peter and the doomsday machine plus Olivia and her ability to move between worlds will be the key to saving this one.

    • Dan

      I like that idea. I think a team going over to the other world would make for some exciting television.

  • tracy bluth

    Holivia (no, I will never stop calling her that) annoys me, so I’ve been enjoying the “Over There” Fringe team just a bit more. However, I still love the episodes “Over Here” and can’t wait for tomorrow! Question though: how will they fit Gene in Walter’s new Massive Dynamic lab?

  • tracy bluth

    “I wish you had believed me.” -JL (Whoops, wrong show)
    “There is no Belly, Walter…YOU ARE BELLY!” (the Fight Club ending)
    “Tesla” (I just watched The Prestige. Speaking of which, David Bowie should totally guest star!!!)

  • Bug

    It will be a note from Billy’s will, detailing how Walternate actually engineered the accident that killed the Over There William Bell because he was a threat to his power and he recognized that Billy could thwart his ultimate plans for world domination. I never believed that whole “they never met” thing. It also will discuss how Peter could easily follow Walternate’s footsteps if he ever loses faith in Olivia.

  • KMG

    I think it’s a photo, not a note, and that it’s a photo of the three of them (Walter, Nina, and Bell) back in the good old days.

    Either that, or a recipe from the alterna-verse for Soylent Green.

    • Kanzaki19

      I agree with the picture possibility, also the comment concerning avocados being a ‘black market’ item could lead to a Soylent Green (esq) situation.
      Well done!

  • Leithen

    The note says, “Dear Walter, I am, and ever shall be, your friend. In that regard, I must protest your preference for Twizzlers over Red Vines. In any universe, that is wrong. — Belly”

  • Tim H.

    This was a 1 minute preview clip on Hulu on Monday.

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