Welcome to the Observiews for Season 4 of Fringe. I call them Observiews because they are more visual observations than deep thinking reviews, if that makes sense.
Screen caps from this episode are taken from fringefiles.com. Dialog is from fringepedia.net/transcripts.
All observations are mine and therefore could be totally off the wall and/or wrong. I have not read or looked at any recaps or reviews. I could also have missed a few things, oh well…
4.13 A Better Human Being
Exerpt from Observiews 4.13 A Better Human Being:
How often in Fringe has someone tried to enter God’s territory and succeeded?
Carla Warren told Walter in 2.15 Peter: “Some things are not ours to tamper with. Some things are God's.”
In 1.02 The Same Old Story Walter talked about a program to grow soldiers
In 2.07 Of Human Action they were working on cloning and mind control
In 3.16 Os a father wanted to fix his son who is in a wheel chair but testing on others
Just to name a few. But in all the results were less than desirable.
How far do we go – in the real world?
Let’s add 4.13 A Better Human Being where Owen Frank wanted to make his children better than him by “attempted to reintroduce abilities that we humans have long since evolved away from, the hard-wired instincts that we share with other animal species.”
And he wasn’t really successful either.
Is this week’s case any different? Let’s see shall we.
Glyphs spelled: FUTURE
The Observer is walking by at Hick’s house.
So here is a question I have. We know that Olivia is Peter’s Olivia. We know Peter is home. That’s what September told Peter last week. So shouldn’t the cases be the same? Or is “home” not the same as “the old timeline” because Peter was erased? I’m confused.
Anyway let’s dive in.
I can’t tell whether the opening is a “cut and slightly shot from a different angle version” from 1.13 The Transformation or if this opening is entirely new.
It was the same flight: VertusAir 718
4.16 Nothing As It Seems
CABIN ANNOUNCEMENT: Ladies and gentlemen, we apologize again for the delay in our arrival. Weather reports still indicate strong winds and turbulence. We'll be circling for just a bit longer. We hope to be on the ground within the hour. Thank you for your patience. We will be coming through the cabin with snacks which are available for purchase for five dollars. Remember, VertusAir no longer accepts cash, so please have your credit or debit card handy.
1.13 The Transformation
INTERCOM: Ladies and gentlemen, we will soon been starting our inflight movie. We will be coming through with headsets which are available for purchase for four dollars. And of course exact change is always appreciated.
4.16 Nothing As It Seems.
4.16 Nothing As It Seems
Notice the difference in color from then versus now as well. 4.16 Nothing As It Seems was a lot darker (not just color but content) than 1.13 The Transformation.
I realized that I could spend many more pages on just this opening scene, comparing them but that would take too long. I’m going to give you the links to the transcripts of this opening scene for 4.16 Nothing as it seems and 1.13 The Transformation and then you can compare them yourselves.
This is what happened in 1.13 The Transformation.
transmogrified on the airplane.
But in 4.16 Nothing As It Seems this is what happened. An air marshal knocked on the lavatory door and
At the airport Bowman says it was just a panic attack. The officers are going to search his bags anyway.
TSA AGENT KNOLLS: “Not since Bush two.” I’ll get back to that.
Anyway, Bowman has another attack and goes into the bathroom. The officers think he’s on drugs.
And then of course he transmogrified.
So on to Olivia who “finally” had to submit to every psych evaluation and field trial the bureau could think of.
In 1.09 The Dreamscape Charlie asked her if she had talked to Dr. Katz after John Scott appeared to her and she said no because it would leave a mark on her record.
In 1.19 The Road Not Taken Sanford Harris ordered her to get a psych evaluation but of course Olivia didn’t do it.
In 4.07 Wallflower Olivia wondered how Astrid copes with what she sees and Astrid revealed she sees the agency’s shrink. And the psychiatrist she’s talking to now is familiar – at least to us.
OLIVIA: “Well, what I meant - - I mean, yes, it's odd, but it's a problem that I can handle.”
OLIVIA: “Oh, of course I have problems, but... the problems I have I can handle.”
DOCTOR ANDERSON: “David Robert Jones?”
OLIVIA: “Yes, the one who kidnapped me.”
DOCTOR ANDERSON: “You remember that?”
Well which kidnapping is she referring to?
David Robert Jones actually kidnapped her twice. First time was at the end of 1.10 Safe. He wanted to know in 1.11 Bound if Olivia was treated with Cortexiphan.
DOCTOR ANDERSON: “You have to admit... it's a little weird, what's happened to you.”
OLIVIA: “I work in Fringe Division. Weird i - is a matter of degrees.”
Dr. Anderson also asks Olivia if she has told her sister. They are close but don’t talk that often because
OLIVIA: “Life. My job. She moved back to Chicago with my niece Ella so that Ella could be closer to Rachel's ex, who, in my opinion, is a liar and a bastard.”
Olivia always shielded Rachel. For one, she can’t really talk about her job because it would be a felony (1.11 Bound) and she doesn’t want to scare her (2.12 What Lies Below).
So then Olivia has to go to Broyles for the results.
Yeah, I’m confused about that as well. We know Greg wanted a divorce in 1.18 Midnight. We know that Rachel went to Chicago numerous times and then in 3.05 Amber 31422 Projection Peter told Olivia that Rachel moved to Chicago because her husband took a job there.
Here is a new fact we learn. OLIVIA: “Our grandfather's name was Eddie.”
So Olivia goes home, discouraged. They don’t even want her to consult on cases.
Olivia has always been humble, not even wanting to take credit for the good work she does (i.e. 1.13 The Transformation: “I didn’t do it alone.” 2.14 Jacksonville: “We all did.”)
And I like what she said to Peter. I also like how she talked with Broyles earlier admitting that she doesn’t remember every detail about every case but that she can learn. And I have no doubt she will.
PETER: “Olivia, a vacation is not such a bad idea. Vermont's beautiful this time of year. I know you don't like skiing, but as long as we got a rug and a fireplace, I think we'll be fine.”
Peter gets called to the case and Olivia stays home. How sad.
Peter makes his way to the lab. And of course everyone is concerned about Olivia.
Walter still has all the birthday presents he bought for Peter even though he didn’t live.
2.01 A New Day In The Old Town
The episode aired Sep 17, 2009 which was a Thursday so I’m assuming Peter’s birthday is Sep 18th.
I just love the relationships between the characters. For Peter to hug Walter, they've come a long way.
Ok, back to the case.
PETER: “I guess this is like the timeline that I'm from. It stands to reason that some of the exact same cases would take place.”
PETER: “Right, the case on the plane. His name was Marshall Bowman. He was an undercover cop.
He was given a designer virus that was programmed to rewrite his DNA, turn him into some kind of creature.”
That’s what John Scott told Olivia in 1.13 The Transformation when she was in the tank, communicating with him.
Of course we know from our timeline that the plane crashed and Bowman died. But in this case the plane landed and Bowman was alive a little while longer.
Walter interrupts. He got Peter a “HUMP” magazine for his 16th birthday.
This picture is from 3.04 Do Shapeshifters Dream Of Electric Sheep.
Unfortunately she won’t be able to see the remains of her brother even if Peter had the authority. But he shows her a letter/note that her brother wrote.
Really? From what I've seen “appealing” is not the word I would have used, lol.
Peter shares with Lincoln that when he worked on that case, Bowman had a partner. He can’t remember the name but Olivia might know.
PETER: “You want to talk about it, or should we just pretend like we already did?”
As they get to Hick’s house.
PETER: “What’s she doing here?”
This whole scene again brought me back to 3.09 Marionette
WALTER: “Look who's here. Oh, it's good to see you out and about. Peter, look, it's Olivia.”
In the house is a lot of medical waste which wasn't part of the original case.
LINCOLN: “Remember you said eventually all this would stop getting strange? In case you were wondering, it still hasn't. You don't remember having that conversation, do you? The night at the diner?”
OLIVIA: You know, eventually it will just become your life.
And then things happen and Lincoln gets attacked by the beast.
When I saw Lincoln in the lab
OLIVIA: “I'm sorry about Hicks' place. I had no idea that he had already become...”
LINCOLN: “...it's nothing. Don't worry about it.”
LINCOLN: “It wasn't your fault.”
Meanwhile Astrid ran the name Olivia gave her. Conrad Etienne Moreau.
I guess the title of the episode makes sense now: Nothing As It Seems.
Peter knows a guy who could help - one of his “weird connections” although he doesn’t remember them.
First time we met him was in 1.14 Ability.
Then we saw him again in 2.13 The Bishop Revival.
And this is my favorite from 3.06 6955 kHz.
Markham needs some convincing.
Lake of the Long Sun, by Gene Wolf. Do you know him?”
EDWARD MARKHAM: “Are you kidding me? I worship him. And a girl as beautiful as you who likes Sci-Fi is a girl after my own heart. I'm Ed, by the way.”
OLIVIA: “Olivia. Sorry, taken.”
EDWARD MARKHAM: “All the best ones are.”
Olivia shows Markham the symbol which has to do with cuneiform
EDWARD MARKHAM: “Are you one of them?”
Meanwhile back at the lab we have Walter and food.
WALTER: “Megif avagin frim dim Tish.”
Of course Lincoln wants Walter to do something but Walter can’t cure the intermediate stage.
Again, 1.13 The Transformation comes to mind.
Ed remembered that the symbol means “renewal” or “rebirth”.
EDWARD MARKHAM: “They're [a group] obsessed with the guided evolution of man. They want to create a new species... a better species... mutation by design.”
I don’t know about “a better species” or “mutation by design”. I think I’ll stay as I am.
KATE HICKS: “Oh, baby, you're hurting. This should be the last one.”
KATE HICKS: “Just think how special you're gonna be... how special we're both gonna be... like Adam and Eve.”
Back at the lab Olivia, Peter and Astrid are having fun with conspiracy theories.
WALTER: “I hadn't realized how much I longed for family.”
WALTER: “And you too, of course. It's not every day that a perfectly suited chess partner comes along.”
palindrome... or a palindromic code, to be precise.”
AGENT LEE: “What's that mean?”
WALTER: “Something that reads the same backwards of forwards. Words like "madam" or "boob."”
WALTER: “…years ago, when Belly and I were tripping, we created a way of organizing lab files using only palindromes.”
So of course they pay Nina a visit.
OLIVIA: “Well, maybe it's from a terminated experiment.”
NINA: “We have many projects dealing with the genetic engineering of hybrids. I'll have to run a search. You weren't supposed to be here. Phillip said you were pulled off field duty.”
NINA: “I suppose every version of you is stubborn.” That was my favorite line.
And of course they discover that David Robert Jones was in charge of this project.
Back at the lab Lincoln is devouring only the bacon from the sandwiches.
shows up once in a while.
Lincoln wants more, so Walter says: “Aphid, could we get Agent Lee some more…”
I did some digging and that’s what I found about the meaning of Aphid. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aphid & http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aphid_(disambiguation)
Because of the cravings Lincoln has Walter figured it out.
Walter also discovers that the creature gets the fact from plastic-surgery clinics. And Peter asks how they get around without seeing.
Well let’s take a look shall we.
Walter mixes a cocktail for Lincoln, wheat grass, penicillin, some mild laxatives and mint to hide the aftertaste.
Ok so back to the case.
ASTRID: “Well, we've got good news and bad news. Which do you want first?”
WALTER: “Bad.” PETER: “Good.” OLIVIA: “Turns out that Walter was right. There was a robbery at a surgi-center just outside of Allston about ten days ago, and among other things, about half a dozen bags of surgically removed fat were stolen.”
WALTER: “Which is that, good or bad?”
Walter developed a rendering program to complete the transformation.
AGENT LEE: “They're probably closed by now. We should get a move on. At this point, I have no choice. I need to call for reinforcements. I have to inform Broyles.”
PETER: “If you call Broyles, he's gonna know that Olivia was working on the case.”
OLIVIA: “I just spoke to Broyles. He's gonna have backup meet you at the facility. He said he'd deal with me later. So go.”
As Peter and Lincoln go off, Olivia stays back with Walter.
WALTER: “Have we heard anything? I don't know about you, but this tension's killing me.”
WALTER: “Ho, ho, ho, ho... Oh. Very clever. He's using the sleeping-Indian defense. He saw my Rook about to take his Queen, and he countered with his Knight. So what should I do?”
Lincoln called radio silent so Olivia calls Peter to tell him to turn the lights on.
Walter was playing with the birthday gifts for Peter.
ASTRID: “So, more questions.”
OLIVIA: “Yeah, about a thousand more, starting with, if David Robert Jones is behind this, what's he up to?”
Or as Broyles said it 1.07 In Which We Meet Mr. Jones: “and guess what, you’ll have a million new answers and a million and one new questions”
WALTER: “You mean assuming that creating a flying human-porcupine hybrid was not his end goal.”
OLIVIA: “Yes, and where is he recruiting these people from? And are there more out there? And who would sign up to become one of these things?”
I thought of 1.05 Power Hungry
WALTER: “'And mankind gains dominion over all he surveys'.”
ASTRID: “Yeah, what does that mean?”
Then Broyles shows up to deal with Olivia.
OLIVIA: “Look, I'm - - I'm sorry that I disobeyed your orders. I shouldn't have got myself involved in that case. And if I hadn't, then Lincoln would never have been injured. And I get it - - there's a lot that I need to catch up on so, from now on, no matter what, I'm going to listen to what you have to say.”
BROYLES: “I've been on the phone with the Tenth Floor for the past hour. What we've decided is this... if you're sixty percent of the Olivia I knew, you're still better than ninety percent of the agents I've ever worked with. And a Fringe Division with an Olivia Dunham is better than a Fringe Division without her.”
BROYLES: “Good work today... Agent.”
Anyway Melinda Bowman found a new person to convince to be children of the new world.
That’s what I thought of when I saw the ship.
And as Olivia said what does Jones want if these creature are not his end goal. What implication does have that for Olivia? He clearly wants something from her.
Will we find out soon?
“In the end I have to believe in HOPE”