Fringe to answer the question: Is Peter's mom too young?

As Fox's sci-fi series Fringe prepares to wrap up its second season, one of the enduring mysteries has been: What the heck happened to the wife of Walter Bishop (John Noble) and mother of Peter (Joshua Jackson)?

That question may soon be answered, according to Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello. (Minor spoiler ahead!)

He reports that the erstwhile Mrs. Bishop will appear in an episode early next year:

Irish actress Orla Brady—you may remember her as James Woods' ex on Shark—has nabbed the pivotal role of Walter's other half and mother to Peter, sources confirm to me exclusively.

The character—described in the initial casting breakdown as strong, smart, and likable—will debut in early '10.

Which raises a whole lot of other questions: Is this Peter's mother from the Other Side? Or from our reality? Will she appear in flashbacks or in real time? Where's she been?

And isn't she just a bit too hot and too young (Orla's 48, though it's unclear how old her character's supposed to be) for Walter (Noble's 61, though it's also unclear how old his character is)? After all, Jackson's 31 years old. If the characters are the same age as the actors, that means Ma Bishop would have been 17 and Walter 30 when she gave birth to Peter. Yikes!

Also, consider this: We recently saw Bishop with a former student, played by 52-year-old Theresa Russell, with whom he once shared a romantic fling. A student!

Of course, we may just see Ma Bishop in the past or something. You never know with this show.

What questions do you have? Fringe airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Fox.

For the latest sci-fi news, follow us on Twitter at @scifiwire

Related Stories

If you liked Fringe's futuristic season finale, you're gonna love S5 Trent Moore

Though a fifth and final season of Fox's Fringe was an unknown at the time, the producers decided to take the risk and introduce us to a wild, weird future ruled by the Observers late in season four. With a fifth year now a certainty, producer J.H. Wyman wants you to know: We will definitely be revisiting the bizzaro future of 2036 we glimpsed in "Letters of Transit."

TV THIS WEEK: It's an Observer-filled Fringe, Being Human and more! Kathie Huddleston

After four years, will we finally find out what those Fringe Observer dudes are all about? Let's hope so, especially since Fox's Fringe is taking a month off after Friday's episode. This week we'll also have the return of BBC America's Being Human for a fourth season, which joins Syfy's Being Human on the schedule.