Fringe (2008) – The Equation, and The Dreamscape

The Equation, written by J.R. Orci and David H. Goodman, first aired on 18 November, 2008. While the story definitely ties in with the ongoing and developing series mythology, tying in directly with the mole inside the Bureau, and Walter Bishop’s (John Noble) past work, there’s some other things going on here.

When a young boy ends up being kidnapped by Joanne (Gillian Jacobs) after showing indications of being a musical genius, Walter, son Peter (Joshua Jackson) and Olivia (Anna Torv) run down clues and connections that reveal a connection to Walter as well as more missing people.

There is some spooky stuff at work here, the hypnotism stuff is a little unnerving, but the most powerful part of the story centers on Walter. He’s always been a little off-kilter, but he’s starting to realize his responsibility in all of the things that have been happening.

When the trail leads to an old associate of Walter’s from the mental institution he was held in, Walter says he doesn’t want to go back there, but he will because he knows he must begin to atone for what he’s wrought.

Once in the institution, and consulting with his old friend, the head of the institution played by William Sadler isn’t intent on releasing him to the public again, enter Peter’s true commitment to his father and the resources of the Bureau.

There’s a lot going on in the story, and the series is already creating a mood, style, and characters we care for. There’s also a blink and miss it glimpse of an Observer (Micheal Cerveris).

The Dreamscape was written by Julia Cho and Zack Whedon and had an original airdate of 25 November, 2008.

After a strange death occurs at Massive Dynamic, Olivia and the rest begin to suspect that the company isn’t as upfront and clean as it claims to be, in fact at one point one of the people in the case tells Olivia that everything until now, including The Pattern is nothing but a smokescreen concocted by Massive Dynamic to keep their own objectives secret.

Olivia is still having visions of her dead partner, John Scott (Mark Valley), and Walter tells her that he believes there are shared memories there, that part of John’s recall resides in her now. The team uses this to put Olivia back in the isolation tank to see if they can get a lead on the case.

It works, but Olivia is convinced that the avatar she sees of John in her mind trip is aware of her, Walter rules it out, but the final moments of the episode sent a chill down my back. Not to mention a murder that takes place in plain view in a hospital.

The mythology is being built incredibly well, and cleverly, and we’re obviously racing towards something very important because it feels like the stakes are getting ratcheted up episode by episode.

Peter also has some solid moments as he reconnects with an old girlfriend, and there’s a hint about the life he left behind and the people that are looking for him.

Let’s see what happens next time!

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