Fringe 9/17/09

No thread for this? Forgive me if there is one, but I didn’t see it.

Pretty good episode, but I don’t get the new FBI agent they have. What is the point of her?

I liked the references to X-files. :slight_smile:

I’m a sucker for this show. I really enjoyed this episode.

I think the new FBI agent is someone they threw in just to add another character to the cast. Also,

Since Agent Francis is now dead and replaced by the shapeshifter, presumably he will be found out, at which point they will need a character to replace him.

I liked the X-Files references, too! When the guy mentioned it in the hearing room, I couldn’t suppress a grin.

I can’t wait to see where they go with the plot this season.

I’m a little surprised no-one started a thread a thread yesterday either. I was a little unhappy that Dunham’s meeting with Bell will be coming out in fragments, but then I guess that’s part of the mystery for this season.

And for some reason, the new agent kind of looked like Janeane Garofalo to me. It was just something about her face.

Anyway, it seems to off to a good start.

Yeh, that was a great start to what I predict will be an even better season than last (and I loved the last season). I’m really looking forward to this season, especially now that they’re moving deeper into the mythology.

[spoiler]I’m gonna miss Agent Francis. He was great. He always seemed to pop up just when you forgot about him, and always added to the scene. He was a good actor.

Granted, the actor is still on the show, but knowing what we know now, it changes how you feel about him. I liked him as a good guy.[/spoiler]

Anyone see the ‘Watcher’ in the episode? I forgot to look out for him.

I, too, want Nimoy in every episode!

In the opening scene, as the shapeshifter is running away, the camera pans up and we see the location text. The watcher is walking in the front of the picture from right to left.

Love this show!

What was the X-Files reference?

[spoiler] My reaction to seeing Agent Francis get tossed in the furnace was “that sucks”. I liked the character. The actor will still be there but it won’t be the same.

It took me a minute to figure out where the third body came from. I guess when the bad guy, now Agent Francis, killed the nurse he brought her body down to the furnace room. It didn’t seem he would have had time to make all the switches with the bodies but whatever. If I can accept a shapeshifter I guess I can suspend my belief to believe he just moved the bodies really fast.


Is this a spoiler? I am going by memory from last season and haven’t watched any reruns.

[spoiler] I asked my wife if she caught the little hint about Peter when Walter was saying Peter loved custard as a boy and Peter said he didn’t. She was confused and I had to stop and explain about how Peter is apparently the alternate Peter and therefore has a few differences from the “real” Peter such as his favorite foods, which she had trouble accepting.

Her: But who is that then?
Me: That’s the alternate Peter. The REAL Peter apparently died when he got sick as a boy and Walter kidnapped the alternate Peter or something. There may even be an alternate Walter running around looking for this Peter that we haven’t seen yet.
Her: This show is confusing.
Me: Yeah :slight_smile:


There were two.

  1. In the opening scene, when the shape shifter is connecting to the first person, they pass by a TV and either one of the movies or an episode of X-files is on, with Mulder and Scully looking up at the camera.

  2. At one point, a memeber of the subcommittee grilling the Black guy bring’s up, “that old X designation” in terms of bad program in the past.

  3. Apparently, the senator that mentioned the old “x designation” was one of the men in shadows(actors, anyway) that we sometimes heard from on X-files.

Regarding the shapeshifter at the end:

This bothers me, too, especially since:We clearly see Charlie turn and fire at the shapeshifter (in the form of the nurse). There really isn’t a whole lot of time between those shots and the arrival of Peter and the new agent. Now, perhaps if we hadn’t seen Charlie fire, we could suppose the shapeshifter overpowered him before he could fire, proceeded with the shape changing, then fired to bring the others on to the scene. As it is, we have to suppose:[ul][]The human body of the nurse had been hidden down there already (quite fortunate, that)[]The shapeshifter overpowered Charlie after he fired[]Then completed the shapeshift, changed clothes, and arranged the human bodies (hiding Charlie’s and bringing the nurse’s out of hiding)[]All before Peter and the new agent arrived[/ul]It’s a bit much, even for this show. Maybe something will come to light in the future that will shed some light on what we believe we saw (like, for instance, the truth about House’s overnight rehab at the end of that show’s last season), but right now it doesn’t add up. To say nothing of the fact the autopsy will provethe body they apparently believe is the shapeshifter (the nurse) is obviously human.I guess we’ll see. I do like the show a lot, so I’m willing to give it a bit of leeway.

Beyond that, they used Olivia’s sister to get Peter to see Olivia while in a coma, just like in the episode “One Breath” when Missy Scully guilted Mulder into seeing her sister when they thought Scully would die when they pulled the plug. And the senators hearing was a scene very much like a scene first X-Files movie - similar insistance that they’d be shut down for lack of results.

I really liked the episode but did have a few problems with it. The scene where Walter plays the tape of the old experiment which explains the shapeshifter seemed to me to be a bit of a “let’s explain this for the slow people in the audience” but I’ll let them get away with it in a season premiere.

I did have more problems with the shapeshifter and Charlie. I posted a longer analysis of it over on my blog but here’s my take on Charlie’s death.

Let’s note that, considering the show involves multiple similar dimensions, there is always an opening to bring a dead character back.

Very good point. I’d also put good money on us seeing parallel versions of some of the characters by the end of the season.

The producers said (during the “Tweetpeat” a week or so ago) that we will only ever be dealing with two universes (ours and one alternate). Given that, we have seen an alternate version of Charlie (with the scar on his face) already.

I’m speculating, based on the Greek phrase Olivia yelled when she woke up, that she has met Peter’s real mother in the other universe. I’m wondering what Peter will do when he realizes that this universe isn’t his home?

Yep; there’s already been speculation we haven’t seen the last of Mr. Jones.

Wait, what? When have we seen an alternate version of Charlie?

Second to last episode last season - Olivia begins seeing another dimention where sponanteous combustion girl is twins. The other Charlie talks to Olivia about the case not being a big priorty considering what else is going wrong there.

Ohh, OK - thanks elfkin477. I’d been trying to place having seen “Alternate Charlie” in this reality and forgot about the one where Olivia is traveling between worlds on her own.

According to someone on the SomethingAwful forums, this X-Files episode actually dealt with body-switching, very similar to the plot of the Fringe episode. How someone could deduce that from a few seconds of grainy footage in the background is beyond me, but that’s the word on the intertubes.

In The Road Not Taken (the episode with the spontaneous combustion case; next to the last episode) there are several scenes Olivia is seeing into the alternate dimension (where Boston is half in flames). At one point she starts “seeing” the other universe and sees Charlie (with a scar on his face). She asks him for information about the case and he says something like “Half of Boston is under quarantine and you’re worried about that?” but gives her the info she needs.

I saw it more as a ‘how can we make it believable that a random FBI agent would actually believe this crazy stuff right out of the blue’ type of moment.

I’m late on this and just tonight had time to watch the premiere but I felt the need to track down the thread anyways.

Few thoughts.

  1. Gonna miss Charlie. Liked his character as something of a ground for Olivia and a connection to her pre-Fringe division life, especially with John. I figure he’ll be back in some form, but there’s going to have to be a pretty big change in demeanor.

  2. I was annoyed by the shape-shifting thing. Usually Fringe makes a token effort to research and explain some of these crazy technologies and happenings with some Fringe science technobabble. In this one Walter offered no crazy theories and they never tried to explain how the device with the three prongs facilitates the shape-shifting. I suppose they still can do that since the device is now in Broyles hands but the way it was just shrugged off bumped me.

  3. The new chick seems to be very clumsily introduced. I’m trying to decide if this is just poor writing and acting or if there’s something actually off about her. Perhaps she’s a plant or a double agent for either the the ZFT, Massive Dynamic or the Senate Oversight Committee. Her conveniently showing up and being super interested in the Fringe division and getting access to all the files was curious. My bet is that it’s just lazy writing and the character is just a attempt to add a new female character as quickly as possible.

  4. No one seemed to be particularly interested in the fact that Olivia just launched through the window of a stopped car while everyone was standing there. I know the Fringe folks have seen a lot of weird stuff and her health and safety was the major concern but it’s like this detail was ignored by everyone. I’m sure it’ll have something to do with the inter-dimensional travel but why she would return in such a violent fashion is curious. According to Fringepedia a car swerved and almost hit her in the Season 1 finale, I don’t recall it myself, as she was heading to the meeting with Bell so presumably they knew ahead of time where she’d be sent back to. But that doesn’t really explain why the crash and her arrival were out of sync. Long story short, I hope they focus on explaining that at some point.

  5. The aforementioned shape-shifter scene at the end with Charlie was poorly executed. The timing was way too tight. It was easily fixable too, they could have filmed the nurse dropping down behind him followed by him turning and then cut away and had the shots happening off camera. You could speculate that the shots weren’t actually fired when she dropped down but instead were fired after the body-snatch of Charlie as cover. But they showed it that scenario is impossible. I suppose there’ll be something else to reveal an explanation but it seems more likely that we’re just expected to believe that these shape-shifters can change really fast when needed. I dislike that.

  6. I only noticed the one X-Files reference when the Senate committee member referred to Broyles being in the previous X designation program but I loved it. How cool would it be if that actor or character were actually in an episode of the X-Files as an extra.

  7. What’s up with the kiss between Nina and Broyles? That woman creeps me out. I don’t believe for a second that Massive Dynamics doesn’t have the leverage to keep the Fringe division open, but I don’t think the show intended us to think that Broyles is getting played by Sharp. Probably just more lazy writing. Though perhaps Sharp was behind them getting canceled after all but they would have a lot of contradictions to explain away if they went that way with the story.

  8. I am theorizing that Walter taking Peter from the alternate reality is what causes all the destruction and conflict. Perhaps Peter’s leaving the alternate reality somehow causes a chain reaction of events that leads to the strife. Just a hunch.

  9. Why the heck did the shape-shifter leave the device laying around after killing Charlie? Is it intentional? Did the bad guys want them to find it? Did they expect it to make it’s way into the hands of the military or FBI? Is it some kind of double cross or is it just a convenience of the story? I find it hard to believe that the guy had time to swap bodies and all but not time to pocket the device. Or maybe he knew that his being killed in the shape of the nurse wouldn’t be believable without it being in hand and he broke it to conceal/prevent it’s use. I suppose that makes the most sense. It’ll be convenient that he’s now pretty much trapped in Charlies body unless he has a spare.

  10. The multidimensional typewriter for messages was very cool. I’ll be interested to see how they explain this thing, if they ever do, but I don’t quite get the vampire mirror trick. I suppose someone is able to type on the same typewriter in different dimensions and pass notes, but what purpose did the mirror serve and why wouldn’t you be able to see the shape-shifter’s hands in the reflection?

That’s enough for now since everyone else has probably moved on, but I felt like this episode probably could have been slowed down some and fleshed out more as a 2-parter. The introduction of the new character and the shape-shifter could have happened more naturally and it might have left more time for Bishop to do his sciencey stuff and Broyles to get into the politics more. I felt like the discovery of the shape-shifter and the deduction by Walter and Peter was a little too fortuitous even for Fringe.