The Calendared Observers – Who Are (or Were) They?

Jan 3, 2013 | 4 comments

I think that I may have left audio feedback regarding this theory of mine; I honestly can’t remember, but even if I did, I don’t know if it was included since I am a little bit behind on the podcast, and even if it was, this will give me a chance to possibly expound on it a bit more. I also know that not everyone listens to the feedback episodes of the podcast, but anyway, I have a theory regarding the calendared Observers – that is, January through December, the Observers that we see throughout seasons 1-4. I don’t believe that they were any different than the Observers that we see now throughout season 5; I think that their agenda was the same, and I base that primarily on what the episodic character Raymond Green says to Broyles at the end of the episode titled “Fracture” (2.03):

…they are here collecting data, making observations; that’s what’s in the briefcase. They’ve been planning for war…

I still don’t have a clue who Raymond Gordon was or how he knew about the Observers; none of us do, and unfortunately, I doubt that that question is going to be answered. He was literally a soldier and recruited his own soldiers to help him do his work, which is pretty much the typical behavior of ZFT; it is, therefore, possible that the war to which is alluded in the ZFT manual is not the war between the universes but the war between civilization and the Observers. After all, this is what that portion of the ZFT manual says:

We think we understand reality, but our universe is only one of many. The unknown truth is that the way to travel between them has already been discovered by beings much like us, but whose history is slightly ahead of our own. The negative aspects of such visitations will be irreversible both to our world and to theirs. It will begin with a series of unnatural occurrences – difficult to notice at first, but growing until a simple fact becomes undeniable; only one world will survive. It will either be us or them.

Based on that information, I would say that the manuscript is more than likely referring to the Redverse, especially because the Observers come from a “world” that is not slightly ahead of our own; it is very ahead of our own. I, however, cannot help ponder the possibility that it’s actually talking about the Observers. After all, the Observers do know how to travel between universes, and they did destroy their “world” (I put that in quotes because it seems to be the same physical world, just from the future), the reason still not being totally clear. Perhaps, the primary purpose of ZFT was to test Redverse technology (since it was more advanced than Blueverse technology) in the Blueverse in an effort to coordinate an attack against the Observers, considering Blueverse victims to be acceptable casualties of war; perhaps, ZFT was what later became the Resistance. Mitchell Loeb, after all, told Olivia that she had no idea who her enemy was. Is it possible that he was referring to the Observers, not the Redverse?

September tells Peter during “The End of All Things” (4.14) that he and the other calendared Observers make up a scientific team that was here merely to observe but not to get involved. If my theory is correct, I don’t know why he wouldn’t have told him the rest, about the desire for world domination and so forth, but it’s possible that he did the best that he could to tell him as much truth as he could without having to lie; perhaps, he figured that he would further contaminate the timeline if he told Peter about the Invasion to come. He could have also figured that Peter would play a pivotal role in the defeat of the Observers but not if he knew ahead of time, since events had to play out in a certain fashion. I think that the scientific team was sent back through time by the “evil” Observers that we’re seeing now in order to better understand us, to know the enemy, if you will. After all, if you’re going to invade a world and dominate it, you want to know the terrain ahead of time, right? I think that that was the purpose of the scientific team.

I think that that is why they were told not to interfere. I think that if the timeline were contaminated, the Invasion would not be possible. Take the 2026 future from “The Day We Died” (3.22), for example; that was eleven years after the Invasion happened in this timeline, yet there was absolutely no evidence of an Observer Invasion. Why? I think that it’s because the Observers knew that in that timeline, the world would not be inhabitable due to Walternate and Moreau making effort to destroy the universe. Why not invade a different universe, then, a universe other than the Blueverse? I, unfortunately, can’t explain that, but I am hoping that the writers have, at some point during these final three episodes, made an effort to explain why the Observers needed to invade the Blueverse, but I, unfortunately, doubt that very much.

The point, however, is that the Observers seemed to have needed a timeline in which Peter died as a boy in order to invade, probably because they needed the Bridge to be built between the two universes so that the two universes would end their war and Walternate wouldn’t try to destroy the Blueverse. I think that that is why Peter was erased, and I think that that is why September was instructed by the other calendared Observers near the beginning of “Neither Here nor There” (4.01) to build that device that we see during that episode and fully erase Peter from the timeline. September, however, somehow managed to keep his humanity intact and developed connections to these people – Olivia, Peter, Walter, etc. – and decided that he could not allow the Invasion to prevail. I think that that is why he did not push the button on that device and that that that is why, at the very end of “Brave New World” (4.22), he warned Walter of the coming Invasion. That is also probably why the other calendared Observers locked September out of the universe later on during season 4; they knew that he had defected and was no longer going to help them carry out their plan of annihilation.

I realize that my theory has a couple of problems besides the one that I have already mentioned; however, I think that, unfortunately, these problems are holes within the Fringe story itself. For example, since September actively and intentionally failed to push the button on that device, why does he seem to not understand why Peter was not fully erased? Why does he tell Peter near the end of “A Short Story About Love” (4.15) that he can’t explain Peter’s return? That just seems like inconsistent writing to me. All I know is that September was at odds with the other calendared Observers; he never seemed to share their views and ended up rebelling against them, and that tells me that the rest of them had the same agenda as the “evil” ones that we are seeing now. The only other hole in my theory is that Walter may have said during “Letters of Transit” (4.19) that it was all of the calendared Observers who were killed for helping the Resistance, not just September; I honestly can’t remember that, and I will have to return to that scene within that episode to remind myself of the exact dialogue, but if Walter only mentioned September during that episode, I think that my theory is pretty darned sound. What do you think?

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  1. Chris

    I think you are essentially correct. My thinking was that if September had not distracted Walternate from Peter’s cure, the war between the universes would not have escalated and they could invade. The using of Peter as a bridge was the correction for September’s mistake. However problem with that is September, when informing the other Observers of his mistake, pointed out how important the cure was. So why was Peter originally important? Had thought it would be him inserting the tech, but then he removed it.

    Regarding September’s befuddlement to Peter’s return, I just took it as surprise he would fully physically return rather than just traces bleeding through. And I’m pretty sure Walter was only refering to September in 4-19. “What happened to him was unexpected”, I assume is what we saw in that final scene last episode.

    Hopefully most of our questions will be answered.

    (@lostweatherguy twitter)

  2. SdMike

    Agreed. I believe it was only September that Walter was referring to in 4-19.

    Also in 5-03 “The Recordist”, didn’t they say that Donald had been taken away by the Invaders? Now that we know Donald is actually September I’m wondering if that means that the Observers took September away after he became Donald (implying Walter or someone changed him from an Observer into a normal person)?

    Of course it could also be that the Observers took Donald away before he became September, meaning maybe they took Donald and made him into an Observer? That would explain why he seems to have so much more emotion than the others and his obsession with Walter/Olivia/Peter… It also reminds me of August from back in season 2… he was crying at the end of the episode because he loved that girl. Maybe Calendar observers are people that became observers versus the others which were genetically engineered/grown observers?

    Anyway, here’s hoping for some big answers in 5-11!


  3. Paul

    To answer your question about Peter’s importance, Chris, I believe September said to the other Observers that the moment of discovering the cure was the important event, and not Peter himself. Since the Observers appeared at historical events(I remember Brandon showing photos of an Observer at the assassination that started WWI and at Marie Antoinette’s beheading), that moment was pretty significant I would say. A cure had been discovered for a terrible, deadly disease. Maybe September had just finished visiting the moment when the cure for Polio was discovered and now wanted to witness this.

    And we got confirmation in one of the final episodes that when September said “The boy is important, he has to live,” he was actually talking about his anomaly son Michael.

    • Christopher

      I believe that September did actually say that the boy was important, not that the event was, but I would need to watch that particular scene again to double-check because you could be right; I just remember the scene involving his saying that the boy was important. You bring up a really good point, however; Walter and Walternate were incredibly brilliant (although obviously misguided) scientists, and finding a cure to a deadly disease would definitely be an incredibly important event, one that September may have found important enough to witness. I am aware, however, that he was actually referring to Michael, not to Peter, when he told Walter that the boy was important and that the boy had to live; my blog entry was written and posted before the episode that revealed that was aired.


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