Fringe Summer Rewatch: #107 "In Which We Meet Mr. Jones" ~ Fringe Television - Fan Site for the FOX TV Series Fringe

Fringe Summer Rewatch: #107 "In Which We Meet Mr. Jones"

      Email Post       7/24/2011 04:08:00 PM      

Join us for our Fringe Summer re-watch, where we review every episode of Fringe during the summer hiatus. Comments are welcome as we dig into the connections made over three seasons.

Meeting Mr. Jones is another key moment in the Fringe mythology. So important, that J.J. Abrams co-wrote the episode with Jeff Pinkner. There is a slight monster-of-the-week plot humming in the background, but when a viewer takes a serious look, it is amazing at how this episode sets up future developments for plot and characters.

My Observations:

Walter asks Peter for gum or mints… Then when that fails, he asks a surprised Broyles. After looking at Mitchell Loeb‘s strange heart problem, Walter says his breath is atrocious, so he can‘t study him at the hospital. Even back at the lab, Walter is fixated on gum, which Peter provides. By Season 3, Walter hasn’t lost his ease at asking people for gum. (Reciprocity - Walter asks MP for gum, preferably grape.)

Peter comes up with a solution to stop the organism from constricting Loeb’s heart. Walter is impressed, “You may have found your true calling - working with me.” Peter at this point in time won’t have any of that as he states loudly, “I certainly hope not!” As the series progresses, Peter embraces his place as one of The Bishop Boys. Both of them work together in the hope of saving their universe.

One thing that stuck out to me was Walter talking about the perfect DNA code sequence embedded among the organism’s genetic profile. Kind of like a signature of sorts. Walter mentioned another such signature in The Bishop Revival. I also can’t help but think that Peter’s DNA is not all natural either, but that could be discussed at another time.

Astrid finally starts to develop character-wise, although Walter refers to her as Olivia’s “friend” at this point. Astrid reveals her love for cracking codes. Astrid’s not the only one. Olivia knows what a “Caesar shift” entails.

This skill comes back into play in Season 3. In 6955 kHz, Astrid cracks the code for the meaning of the numbers transmitted by the number stations, and she learns the locations of the machine parts. In Reciprocity, Olivia figures out who the shapeshifters are by figuring out the OLIVE code used by Fauxlivia.

In this case, the code sequence is ZFT. Olivia mentions this name to Broyles, and he tells her about David Robert Jones, a scientist with a specialization in genetic weaponry, that had recently been arrested in Germany for the possession of state secrets.

Olivia shows her tenacity with Broyles when she demands more information about ZFT. When Broyles tells Olivia that Germany is denying the U.S. access to Jones, Olivia says she may be able to get to him. This amuses Broyles who asks:

“Do you have super-powers that you’re not telling me about?

Wow, the power of such a seemingly unimportant statement placed in context with the rest of the series! The Day We Died showed that Olivia had honed her telepathic abilities.

Also, it struck me that Olivia would not accept Broyles’ taunting her that she could not get in to see Jones. Of great interest is her insistence that she made a promise to Loeb’s wife. Olivia always keeps her promises, to the best of her ability. The most important promise of all in my opinion? It is when Olivia promised Alternate Broyles that she would find another way to save both universes. Although, it went wrong the first time, I have no doubt that Olivia will keep that promise in Season 4.

One silly connection? Broyles tells Walter that he appreciates his work. Walter goes off on a tangent about once having had a fruit cocktail in Atlantic City. Even though he isn’t a fruit cocktail kind of guy. In The Last Sam Weiss, Walter complains to Astrid about no one having a classic fruit cocktail anymore…

When Broyles was concerned about Walter’s fruit cocktail rambling, he brings his concern to Peter. Peter takes the opportunity to let out all of frustration about taking care of Walter.

When Olivia was with Lucas, I couldn’t help but grin at her cell phone ringing. Seems every time she gets romantic, she’s interrupted by a darned cell phone. Season 3 is a prime example of this.

When Olivia meets Jones, he tells her that she and he are basically pawns for someone else. He taunts her: “The people that I work with are loyal to the end. Can you say the same?” I can’t help but wonder if this was about someone other than Loeb.

One interesting moment at the end between Olivia and Peter. As Samantha Loeb is reunited with her husband, Peter tells Olivia, “Look at that,” and they both smile. In The Firefly, they both glance at an older couple enjoying each other in a retirement home and Peter remarks to her, “That's sweet…” To me, these observations show that both of them admire and desire a strong love.

Lies Told to Peter:

As the team prepares Joseph Smith for a procedure, it dawns on Peter that Walter had hooked him up to car batteries as a child. Peter is very upset that Walter side-steps the issue, that he is almost to the point of tears. What was the real reason Walter did this? Was it to cause a memory wipe for Peter, who does not remember the events depicted in Subject 13? When Peter is drugged and hooked up to the apparatus, he momentarily calls Walter, “Daddy.” Was Walter’s glances at him out of affection for the term, or disgust with himself for what he did to Peter as a child?

Unanswered Questions:

This is an incredible long shot, but I wonder if Jones didn’t have something to do with the machine, since his specialization was genetic weaponry. Nina Sharp had said that the machine had William Bell’s design signature. Jones was a protégé of Bell. But in The Day We Died, Future Walter says he sent the machine back through through the worm-hole in Central Park.

Who wanted Jones to meet with Olivia?

If Jones did not infect Loeb, who did? And how to Jones know how to kill the parasite?

If Peter Does Not Exist?

Would there be a ZFT, even if Peter was not in the picture? Jones had no interest at all in Peter, but was highly interested in Olivia… Would Olivia have possibly continued rekindling her relationship with Lucas if Peter had not interrupted them? Peter saved Loeb’s life at one point; could Walter have done the same thing that Peter did, or would Loeb have died? Peter was able to figure out Little Hill. Maybe someone else in his place could not do so, causing Jones to withhold the treatment form Loeb.


Kristin said...

The whole plot by the Loebs to get the name of Little Hill still perplexes me. I suppose they knew that the parasite would be investigated by Walter, which would lead him to ZFT and Jones. How did they know that Jones would ask Joseph Smith the question? And why didn't they just ASK Joseph Smith the question themselves? And who is the gentleman, I wonder?

cortexifan said...

-Budapest was also the place where one of Bell’s test subjects set himself on fire in 1.19 The road not taken.
-Who put that thing in to Loeb?
-Christmas Carol flyer was the clue for the next episode where Walter remembered Dashel Kim’s name through Jingle Bells. I always thought it was something more. Sounds like the machine is some kind of ghost for either past, present, future. Peter was able to see a future and now has a chance to change it just like Scrooge in Christmas Carol.
-Broyles to Olivia: “you got super-powers you aren’t telling me about?” Broyles, you have no idea!
-The method they used to ask questions reminded me of how they were trying to get Bell to leave Olivia in 3.19 LSD.
-Who is Jones, how does he know Olivia and how long has her known her? What does he know about John Scott?

If Peter didn’t exist in this episode…
-How else would they have gotten information from dead Mr. Smith?
-Would Loeb still be alive?
-If Peter didn’t call Olivia when she was with Lucas, how far would this situation have gone?
-Would Olivia have been able to talk with Jones at all?

fringeobsessed said...

Good points, ladies. :)

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