Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fringe is Back - with Feral Child, Pheromones, and Bald Man

Fringe came back on Tuesday after a two-month break with Episode 1.15 - a top-notch story, one of the best in the series, which centered around a bald boy discovered in the nether reaches of a building about to be demolished. He bonds to Olivia, and helps her nab a nasty serial killer, "The Artist," who dresses his women victims up after killing them, and puts them on public display.

Walter and Peter are back in great form - lots of crazy, funny talk from Walter, with Peter providing sarcastic commentary, in between Walter coming up with his customarily brilliant insights and solutions. In this episode, Peter comes up with a solution, too.

Walter early on realizes that the bald boy is empathetic - not that he literally reads thoughts, but gets the feel of what people on his radar, such as Olivia, are feeling. Not only that, but he can do this at a distance, to the point of sensing things highly relevant to Olivia's case. A feral child, yes, but since this is Fringe, the child has fantastic abilities. (Walter also comments at some point that the boy may be older than he looks - I was thinking that, for all we know, the boy could be a guy with a crush on Olivia.)

Broyles is in fine form tonight, too - working with Olivia to get the boy into a home rather than surrendering him to some government agency.

So why did I put the bald man - the eternal bald observer - in the title of this review?

Well, in the last scene, as the bald boy is being driven to his new home, he passes a man on the street - a man whose presence disturbs the boy. No wonder that it does - it's the bad man, the eternal bald observer we see on the fringes of every episode of Fringe, who may well be an older version, relative, variant relative, of the bald boy whose story we just saw.

(Hey, come to think of it, Broyles is bald, too.)

6-min podcast review of Fringe

See also Fringe Begins ... Fringe 2 and 3: The Anthology Tightrope ... 4: The Eternal Bald Observer ... 7: A Bullet Can Scramble a Dead Brain's Transmission ... 8. Heroic Walter and Apple Through Steel ... 9. Razor-Tipped Butterflies of the Mind ... 10. Shattered Pieces Come Together Through Space and Times ... 11. A Traitor, a Crimimal, and a Lunatic ... 12, 13, 14: Fringe and Teleportation

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