Fringe Summer Rewatch: #117 "Bad Dreams" ~ Fringe Television - Fan Site for the FOX TV Series Fringe

Fringe Summer Rewatch: #117 "Bad Dreams"

      Email Post       8/03/2011 12:01:00 AM      

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.

Bad Dreams is a key episode in the mythology of Fringe, introducing to us another Cortexiphan subject -- Nick Lane. The connection that he and Olivia share from the past allows her within her dreams to see what he is feeling and experiencing. Nick is hyper-emotive and highly infectious. His feelings are killing people. Olivia can see and feel what Nick Lane sees and feels. Olivia's mind is capable of translating what Nick feels into images her mind can recognize.

New Questions raised in this episode that remain unanswered:

Ella gets vaccinated. Perhaps there is more than meets the eye.

Nick Lane had a very comprehensive military policy. Where did he get this from?

Cortexiphan, a highly experimental drug -- might enhance predisposed abilities in certain children. It worked on perception. "Perception is the key to transformation." The key here is "certain" children. How did they determine which children to run the cortexiphan tests on?

While Olivia is put under REM sleep and she tries to find where Nick Lane is at she becomes stressed from watching him murder a dancer. It is Peter that reaches out and takes her hand which calms her down. What is it that helps her calm down? His touch? Something else?

Why is there a scar with the number "2" on Nick Lanes face? What about the tattoo on his right arm?

"Olive, you heard me." Nick intentionally sought her out. It seems he remembers the drug trials. Were they capable of doing this as children? How much so? Speaking to each other telepathically? Or through dreams? Perhaps another way?

Other Notable Stuff:

In the beginning there are red, blue and yellow balloons tied to the girls stroller. It is the red balloon that floats to the top of the ceiling.

Olivia's wardrobe we see for the first time, all blacks and grays.

"Why do I feel I don't fit in, anywhere I go." Walter sings this line.

"Must be a terrible thing, not to be able to trust your own mind." Peter Bishop tells Olivia this while waiting to speak with the doctor regarding Nick Lane at the mental hospital.

Nick remembered about the past, Olive, and the coming war against a parallel universe.

Nick was born in Jacksonville, Florida. He too was a Cortexiphan test subject. The children were paired together, to keep them from feeling isolated. Cortexiphan may have greatly amplified the bond.

Peter: "If you can make a better world, you can dream a better world."
Walter:"Or perhaps travel between it."

We see Nick's wardrobe is just like Olivia's, everything is blacks and grays.

"What was written will come to pass." Written on the wall. Olivia has seen this before when David Robert Jones escaped the hospital.

Olivia is immune of Nick's abilities from having Cortexiphan in her body.

"You were made for this." Nick tells her when he begs her to kill him, to stop him from killing others.

If Peter Bishop Never Existed:

In this episode Peter is the force that keeps Olivia grounded. He is confident that she did not kill these people, that the first was a suicide and the second a murder that was committed by the wife as everyone witnessed, not by Olivia in her sleep.

Without Peter having calmed Olivia down by taking her hand, she may not have been able to continue under REM sleep and wouldn't have been able to find where Nick Lane lives.


cortexifan said...

-Balloons seem to be a theme in the series as well, No-Brainer, Bad Dreams, August, Concentrate and ask again, just to name a few. The colors are red, blue, yellow (most of the time).
-Sleep and dream references again. Olivia says she’s not sleeping very well. I wouldn’t either if I had to go down to the sewer in the episode before.
-Olivia says to Rachel: “I hate that you can date two guys at the same time. At the end of the episode you can hear groaning in the background as Olivia looks through Nick’s file. And is Peter the second guy?
-Olivia is looking through her closet after she wakes up. The next time we see her do that is in 3.09 Marionette when she rips through it after realizing that Fauxlivia was wearing her clothes.

-For the Pilot I said Peter and Olivia have a special connection. Here is another example: Peter is able to calm her down when she is under hypnosis. In 1.14 Ability the lights don’t turn out until Peter comes back on to the floor. In 2.01 A New Day In The Old Town, Olivia doesn’t say the Greek phrase until she hears Peter’s voice. In 3.15 Subject 13 it doesn’t start snowing until the touch or at least are about to. In 3.21 The Last Sam Weiss the typewriter didn’t start working until Olivia was physically with Peter and he asked her what the phrase was and Peter was also present and close by when Olivia turned off the machine.

-Nick Lane is Olivia’s friend in 3.15 Subject 13. Walter used him to play an awful joke on her. Olivia doesn’t remember him. He helped them cross over in 2.21 Over There part 1. Lincoln recognized him. Why? The scar Nick has looks similar to the one Alt-Charlie has.
-Olivia said she didn’t want to sound crazy. In 3.01 she was trying to defend herself to Henry by saying: “I’m not crazy you know.”
-Peter says: “Must be a terrible thing to not be able to trust your own mind.” Olivia can identify with that. In 3.01 Dr. Anderson says to Olivia; “Olivia, I know it’s really scary, not being in control of one’s own mind.”
-In Walter’s room, Peter says: “Reality is both subjective and malleable. If you can dream a better world you can make a better world.” In 3.15 Subject 13 Elizabeth says to Peter: “He (a professor) used his brain and his imagination to turn the world into what he wanted it to be.” Later in that same episode Peter shares that with Olivia. In 3.03 The Plateau projection Peter appears to Olivia and says: “Real is just a matter of perception.”
-This is the first time Olivia shrugs back from a “Bishop”, this time Walter. The next time she does that is in 3.09 Marionette, in the park when Peter wants to touch her.
-Nick said; “They’re coming.” Who? Shapeshifters?
-If Olivia had killed Nick, would they still have been able to cross over?
-Olivia says; “What we wake up can’t be put back to sleep.” I thought of Peter’s statement in 3.19 LSD when he says; “What if we knock something loose in there?” Well they did, Mr. X who is now awake.

If Peter never existed in this episode…
-would Olivia have gone to New York by herself?
-who would have comforted her in the hospital?
-who would have calmed her down when she was under hypnosis?

I’m just going to throw this in here for all of Season 1: The music is awesome. I listen to the sound track all the time. And that goes for Season 2 as well. I also enjoy Violet Sedan Chair.

cortexifan said...

samspade, "You were made for this." Nick tells her when he begs her to kill him, to stop him from killing others.

I believe that is incorrect. Fringepedia lists that line as: "We weren't meant for this." That's how I understood it as well.

The tattoo is the actors real tattoo (commentary) and part of it is the bank logo in "The Man From The Other Side.)

fringeobsessed said...

Thank you for bringing that up about the moaning.
I found that out by accident, because I couldn't hear what Charlie said to Olivia.
If you turn the volume to the MAX when Charlie drops off Nick Lane's chart near the end of the episode, Liv studies it standing in her living room. You can definitely hear a man's moan coming from upstairs. Liv turns her head in acknowledgement, then goes back to her reading. Remember, Olivia found little Ella sleeping in the hall when she got home.

So I ask you Fringe fans, is that supposed to be Peter having sex with Rachel upstairs? It's possible. He was really spooked by the fact that Olivia might have been experimented on with Cortexiphan. Maybe he needed some stress relief with the "party" Dunham? IF Peter's supposed to be having sex with Rachel I say shame on those writers! Me? I pretend Rachel has a long string of one-nighters, and that the groan belongs to one of her meaningless trysts, and it's one of the reasons estranged husband Greg serves her papers. That is musch easier for me to accept.
I mean, really, after Peter loses Liv in "Bound" would he really sleep with her little sister?

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