I was minding my own business last night, watching Fringe, when I noticed Charley in the background. That seemed somewhat odd, since Charlie had been killed last fall at the beginning of the season. I checked my cable listing, but it said that the episode was new in 2010.
Hmmm, something was up. An alt-universe story? Some sort of shape-changer Charlie (which would actually be the second shape-changer Charlie) coupled with a memory ray? Neither the characters nor the show seemed to be paying any attention to the dead walking -- although the story for the episode was about a girl who came back to life after being dead. Subtle, show, subtle.
I started to notice a nice shading to the characterizations. Walter seemed to have a harder edge and fewer tics than usual. He was more decisive and more confrontational. Olivia, on the other hand, seemed softer, more empathetic. Charley was more in the background than usual and his interactions with Olivia seemed cooler. Was that really Astrid's regular hair style, or was it bushier than it had been?
What could this all mean?
It didn't seem to be an alt-universe story, since Peter was there and Charley had no scar. The mind ray was still possible, but why wasn't the show suggesting any solution? I began to spin out ever more fantastic possibilities.
But when I looked on the internet, it turned out that Fox was just burning off an unaired episode from the first season.