Of White Tulips and Wormholes
Time Travel in Fringe
By Stephen Cass
Out of thin air, a man appears on a crowded commuter train–and is shaken, but not surprised, to see that everyone else in the car is now dead. He is Alistair Peck, MIT astrophysicist and time traveler. Peck soon finds himself being tracked down by Fringe Division, and the pursuit hinges on the rules and consequences of time travel in the Fringe Universe.
Thinking about what the rules and consequences of time travel might be in the real universe has drawn the attention of some of the greatest scientists for over a century. The laws of physics, as we currently understand them, don’t seem to forbid time travel, but they’re not very clear on how real time travel might work, either. If we could really understand time travel it would mean understanding some of the deepest questions we have about our cosmos and its destiny. What is time? Is everything in the Universe predestined? Why do we feel ourselves existing in the instant of the present, ever moving from the past into the future?
To begin to get a handle on these questions, we’re going to have to follow the example of Walter Bishop staring at the equations scribbled all over Peck’s apartment . . .
WALTER: If I comprehend this correctly, then this Alistair Peck has taken Einstein’s Theory of Relativity and turned it on its ear. I grasp portions of it.
. . . and try to grasp a few portions of Albert Einstein’s theories of Special and General Relativity ourselves.
Thinking very deeply about what …