FRINGE: The Bishop Revival
January 29, 2010 by Gretchen
Has anyone else geeked out as much as I have and read the “Fringe” comic book series? If so, you would have already known what was revealed in this episode – that Walter’s father was a Nazi scientist. Plus, you’d be privy to some insider scoop regarding the killer and how he came to be in present day Boston – more on that below.
When Blue Blood is Bad
The Fringe team is called into action when 14 members of the same family all die of suffocation while attending a wedding — even though there was no lack of oxygen in the room. Before she dies, one of the victims, a Holocaust survivor, notices a short man with glasses standing in the room. She appears to be both shocked and horrified by this man’s presence.
Back at the lab, Walter examines one of the bodies and finds the blood inside to be blue, indicating a lack of oxygen. Using this information and a single cinnamon scented candle that Peter found at the wedding, Walter postulates that a heat source (the candle) was used to release a toxin into the air, which only affected a select set of individuals. As he begins to examine the molecular structure of the toxin, he is startled to see a seahorse pattern in it, the signature of his father.
The man formerly known as Robert Bishoff was a Nazi scientist who played on the side of good by selling secrets to the Allies and attempting to hide potentially dangerous discoveries from the Nazis. He smuggled his research by recording it on the pages of German books. Those books had been in Walter’s possession, but Peter sold them in an attempt to lash out at his father, back when Walter was in St. Claire’s.
Walter fears that the killer has gotten his hands on Grandpa Bishop’s research so the team begins to track down the buyer of the books. In the meantime, another similar killing occurs. This one targets individuals with dark hair and brown eyes. It becomes clear that the toxin can be used to target specific groups, based on their genetic make-up.
The buyer of the books turns out to be a false lead, but the team does manage to find the real killer’s evil laboratory and figure out his next move. Unfortunately, the killer has left behind a hot beaker full of badness with Walter’s name on it and Walter nearly dies. As they always say, payback is, in fact, a bitch and Walter concocts his own toxin, which he releases at the World Tolerance Initiative summit, taking down the bad guy before he strikes again.
Broyles doesn’t love Walter’s tactics, but he lets it slide. Peter returns Grandpa Bishop’s books to Walter and Walter begins to go through them, finding an old photo of his father with the killer, who looks no younger than he looks now. ****SPOILER ALERT****** In the comic series, a young Walter Bishop and William Bell are accidentally transported to Nazi Germany in a time-traveling device, where they meet up with Grandpa Bishop. They need to perfect the device in order to return to their present time, but they fear leaving behind a working time machine with the Nazis. According to the comic, Walter manipulates the device in such a way that the next traveler, a fleeing Hitler, is sent WAY (think dinosaurs) back in time. However, this episode implies that the device was later fixed and used by at least one other..
- I love that in the midst of all of the science, mystery, and murder, that Fringe is, at heart, a show about family. It is so much like “Alias” – where all of the crazy spy action never superseded the core family drama of the show.
- Where are they going with Peter and Olivia? One of my favorite things about this duo is the lack of a romantic relationship. I definitely see them as much more brother/sisterly. There have been a few references lately that make me think that having them become romantically involved isn’t entirely out of the question.
- One such reference was Walter’s discussion with Peter regarding a potential marriage between Peter and Olivia and whether or not Olivia would call Walter “Dad”. I know that there are all kinds of theories about who Olivia’s real father might be…I don’t think that Walter is a favorite candidate, but this line definitely teases that a bit.
- We are used to seeing Peter be tough on Walter, but this was the first time that Walter was really tough on Peter. Even when Peter returned the books to Walter, I didn’t get the feeling that everything was made right.
One last thing – I’m no longer looking for The Observer in every episode. Are you? If so, is anyone finding him? I’ve become more interested in spotting the glyph objects in the various scenes – such as the killer eating the apple when he was in Peter/Walter’s house. What are you seeing? What am I missing? Clue me in below and definitely check back next week after the Winter Finale – looks like it is going to be a good one!
P.S. For all you code crackers – tonight’s word was FATHER.
Gretchen is a stay-at-home mom of two awesome little girls who has the good fortune of being married to a husband who is completely cool with her slightly out of control television addiction. During her precious few sleeping hours, Gretchen frequently finds herself ridding the world of pesky vampires and demons, as well as taking down fake secret branches of the CIA.