The Peripheral Episode 5 Recap: What About Bob?

Image Credit: Sophie Mutevelian/Prime Video

Prime Video’s ‘The Peripheral’ enters the second half of its first season with a few revelations and a lot of confrontations. New characters are added to the mix, while some details are presented in a new light which changes the way some characters were perceived previously. At the end of it, the stakes are raised for Flynne and Burton as they have to figure out how to survive, keeping in mind that the people posing as their friends might be the real enemies. Here’s what the ending of this episode spells for their future. SPOILERS AHEAD

The Peripheral Episode 5 Recap

Image Credit: Sophie Mutevelian/Prime Video

The fifth episode opens with a flashback, a year before Aelita West’s disappearance. She meets up with Grace, who will eventually die because of this association. We discover how Aelita’s past relationship with Grace allowed her to manipulate the latter into taking her into the secret facility that Aelita later infiltrates with Flynne. It is also revealed that it was RI that supplied the haptic systems embedded in Burton and his friends, and it was an experiment that led Connor to lose his limbs.

In 2032, a man named Rob O’Connor receives the bounty on Flynne and almost kills her. Burton and Billy Anne’s interference saves her, and Tommy arrests the man, wondering what Flynne has involved herself in. While Flynne and Burton wonder how they were not warned about such an attack, they discover that their mother has found the bodies buried in their backyard. They update her on the situation, and she warns them about the people from the future.

The Peripheral Episode 5 Ending: Is Cherise Nuland Dead?

After the attack by Rob takes Flynne completely by surprise, she decides to take charge of the situation and confronts Wilf. She knew that she was in danger for helping Wilf and Lev in finding Aelita, but she could also count on them to warn her of incoming danger, which they did on previous occasions. They told her about the very first attack, the bounty, and to keep an eye on Corbell Pickett. But when she and Burton are attacked out of the blue on the highway, she knows that she needs to speak up.

She knows that the man had help from the future because he had the sonic punch that she’d only seen in her visits to the twenty-second century. This means that either her friends are getting slack or they don’t care enough whether Flynne lives or dies. As warned by her mother, if she is dispensable to them and they are indispensable to her, then the relationship is not balanced, which means that someday, they might choose not to help her, and then Flynne will have nowhere else to go.

Image Credit: Sophie Mutevelian/Prime Video

Flynne also knows that the real threat is the Research Institute. It is they who have put out a bounty on her head and no matter how many assassins she and her brother evade, Cherise Nuland will keep sending more to kill her. And one day, one of them might succeed in their task. The only way to stop these attacks is for Flynne to cut the problem at the root. She decides to confront Cherise and make her stop sending people after her. But, as Wilf warns her beforehand, the task won’t be so simple.

As soon as Flynne enters the Research Institute, Cherise shows up to have a chat with her. They both exchange some heated words where once again, Cherise puts up the matter of the thing that she believes Flynne stole that night with Aelita West. She also makes it clear that killing Flynne and her brother is in her interest and she will not stop until that’s done. The conversation eventually escalates into hand-to-hand combat, where Flynne ends up killing Cherise. Does this mean that the head of RI is dead?

At the beginning of their conversation, Cherise mentions that like Flynne, she too has a peripheral of her own. Instead of facing the enemy directly, she chooses to play it safe and send her peripheral to situations where things have a chance of turning more dangerous. So, in the end, the thing that Flynne kills is just a peripheral, not Cherise herself. The next time, Flynne promises, she’ll come for the real Cherise.

The revelation of Cherise using a peripheral tweaks the tone of the show, though not in a surprising direction. It makes one wonder how many of the characters are peripherals and not their actual selves. This uncertainty is also a plot device that the show can further employ to confuse the audience as well as its characters about the life and death status of other people in its universe. It also raises the question of how does one differentiate between a real person and a peripheral? The next time when Flynne comes face to face with Cherise, how will she know whether it’s the real one or just another copy? With the danger that surrounds her, this detail might make the difference in a life-or-death situation.

Who Kidnaps Rob O’Connor?

Image Credit: Sophie Mutevelian/Prime Video

While Flynne tries to handle the situation in her own way, a different situation develops in the background. On their way to the police station, Tommy and Rob meet with an accident. Both of them seem to have survived it, but they end up in pretty bad shape. While Tommy tries to get out of the wreck, someone walks up to the car and takes away an unconscious Rob. We only see the boots of this mystery person, but it is pretty clear that he is Corbell Pickett.

Both Rob and Pickett were approached by RI to kill Flynne and Burton, but they remained unclear about a lot of things to both of them. Because Rob has a more imminent threat (RI threatens his daughter), he finds it best to kill Flynne and get it over with. Pickett, on the other hand, has the luxury to wait and see how the whole situation unfolds. He is curious about these people who want to kill two seemingly irrelevant people. He doesn’t mind the money, but he wants to know what the fuss is all about and he hopes to get that from Rob.

It wouldn’t come as a shock to him that Rob is in the dark about these things too, but together, they might become a formidable force. They might start looking into it together, digging out stuff about RI, the future, the stubs, and whatnot. But more importantly, they might join forces to attack the Fisher family, finish the job and get the money they’re both owed. It was easier to deal with them on different fronts at different times, but things would be much more difficult for the Fishers and their friends if Pickett and Rob strike at the same time.

Read More: What is the Jackpot in The Peripheral, Explained