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You know a show has become more than a simple televisual production when you begin to dream about it. It's exactly what could happen to you after watching this 12th installment of Fringe. The softness of her milky skin. The trembling beauty of her whispering lips. The magnetic curves of her golden hair. Olivia Dunham's profile has reached a rare complexity where the boundaries between fiction and reality seem to have vanished. The last time I was so moved by a performance was probably after watching Smallville's Idol and Hostage starring out of memory as Lois Lane. When I thought Anna Torv would never make me forget about Gillian Anderson as Dana Scully this episode finally unveiled the tremendous potential of the triangle between Fauxlivia, Peter Bishop and Olivia. Far from the Manichaean connections we can't relate to the writers have nourished the character development with mature concepts that can only wild the intellect and senses. But Fringe wouldn't be so praised by its audience if it only featured disturbing scenes and heartbreaking moments. Among all its undisputable qualities the wavy writing keeps dazzling the viewers. One episode after the other the dream team behind the show delivers entertaining, smart and amber fluid stories. When the freak of the week is not pure evil it shakes your emotions. It's specially controversial when you know Walter generally gave birth to these tormented creatures. Concentrate and Ask Again's one was in the same vein as the others but with a double-edged twist that should make you care for it even more. The performer was perfect for the job, from its figure to talent. Add the weekly dose of wicked ingredients from body horror to cult references and you get an other pray before your TV UFO. You'll probably consider my brain has French fried but only the ending slightly disappointed me because I think they shouldn't have shown the note Olivia had in her hands. A delicate close-up on her figure would have been more considerate. Otherwise it's only a minor issue and Torv would definitely make a fine Bond girl !
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This episode is back in the thick of what made the first two seasons
sensational. It's an independent story that ties nicely into the bigger
picture with well written plot and solid acting.
I like that no matter how lovable Walter is he can't outrun his past with the cortexifan trials and his experiments on kids; how he and Bell fundamentally changed people, sometimes for the worst, no matter how noble their intentions were. It follows that government weapons testing has multiple outfalls. Even a successful project is likely to have casualties, and in this case those causalities are skilled and motivated soldiers able to extract vengeance for what was done to them. Again, what was done to them was possibly with good intentions originally, but regardless the puppet masters are still held accountable for their part in it. As are the people who are funding the project, the key managers, and the doctors who worked on it. People who have wonderful public appearances and who do a lot of good but still can't escape that deep dark shadow of wartime experiments.
I also find it interesting, and truthful, that the FBI has difficulty finding information about a Top Secret project. Even with compelling circumstances and one piece of a soldier's resume the organizations that hold the rest of the pieces aren't going to just hand over the info. Even when danger and death are imminent for their own people. I like how realistic that part of the episode was. At first I thought, "Hey, we know there are two others. Why can't we just go get his file and cross check what units he was a part of over the past few years?" Because it's not that easy. Particularly when what they were a part of then is having negative consequences now.
It's all about accountability: Walter, Project Jellyfish, even to an extent Peter and Olivia. Your past actions have uncertain future consequences.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
...Is the answer to the question: "If you are paddling your canoe down
the street and the wheel falls off, how many pancakes does a Dump-truck
"12 - Because Ice Cream has No Bones"
Just like scientist Warren Blake (Paul Jarrett) - Who at his office Birthday party, receives a Doll from an unknown "benefactor" named "Madison" - Which has a pull-string on the back that when pulled, spouts a blue power that causes his bones to violently disintegrate. The man is a boneless rag doll himself at the end of the process.
Walter eats a whole Bucket of KFC playing with the stuff, he determines that the source of the powder is Military in Nature. Olivia tracks down the sender of the package via UPS security tapes- Leading Fringe Division to a suspect- Who unceremoniously gets splattered by a car and put into a Coma.
How to get Information out of a man in a coma? They could have used the same method used to connect Olivia to Agent Scott in S1E1, but Walter finds an easier way to do it, he just has to find a man named "Simon Phillips" (Omid Abtahi from "Argo")- Who has a Cortexiphan Talent Walter was afraid of - He can reads minds. But in doing so it causes him great stress, so Simon lives in a secluded house away from people.
One of the common phrases from Fringe is "Another Way" - It is used in almost every episode - And Olivia has "Another Way" for Simon to read the suspect - She clears out a Hospital.
Using clues from Simon's Jean-Gray act, they find the location where two other ex-military cutouts were planning revenge on the General who exposed them to the Blue Stuff - They became Immune to it, but as it affects them on a genetic level, the Blue Gunk was transferred to their Kids, whose skeletons all disintegrated before being born.
But Fringe Division is too late - The remaining perps are on their way to a Fund-Collection Ball where a lot of innocent people will be exposed to Blue Bone-Removing Powder. Simon Phillips does not have to read Olivia's Mind that he's not going to be able to go home yet.
So he helps Fringe Division stop a calamity, but in the process he has read Peter's Mind - And Peter still has feelings for Fauxlivia. So it's just more bad Luck for Peter, and Olivia always wants to jump to conclusions anyway.
Meanwhile Nina Sharp Fringes out that Sam Weiss is the author of the books about "The First People" and that he has special Knowledge about "The Vacuum" - The Machine which Peter will have to get into later.
And so our Fringe Mythos is blended in with a Monster of the Week Fringe Division Case. And we also get to see, that Olivia has retained some of the abilities of Fauxlivia - In this case, Fauxlivia's Olympic-Quality Sharpshooting Ability.
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