Saturday, March 26, 2011

Fringe - "Bloodline"

Walternate (John Noble), Charlie (Kirk Acevedo), and Lincoln (Seth Gabel) have a whispered discussion, which is made more thrilling by its location: a stairwell!
Photo Credit: FOX
Review by Paul Steven Brown

Season 3 - Episode 18

If anything, "Bloodline" was an interesting way of speeding through Fauxlivia's pregnancy and the birth of Peter Bishop's son. If played out in realtime, this event would have had to wait until sometime next season. As it stands, Faux will be in fighting form sooner and with a nice little bundle of plot complication in tow.

While I always love a journey to the red universe*, I wasn't completely blown away by this hour. I figured that either Walternate or Evil Brandon was behind Fauxlivia's abduction. It turned out to be both, but I was hoping that this was a play by Evil Brandon to harvest Cortexiphan in the redverse since Walternate refused to experiment on children. Alas, it was Walternate's ploy to ensure the birth of his grandson since Faux had some kind of whatever virus that a percentage of women have over there that would more than likely result in the death of the baby or the mother; sometimes both.

*Speaking of which, notice the three solid colored paintings hanging in Walternate's office: one blue, one red, and one yellow. Does this a hint about a third universe, or is the Secretary of Defense just a big fan of Syncronicity by the Police?

With Fauxlivia strapped to a table and screaming for most of the episode, the bulk of the action was handled by Lincoln Lee and Charlie "I've Got Spiders In My Blood" Francis. After meeting with Henry the cab driver that helped our Olivia at the beginning of the season and the revelation from Walternate that Olivias had been switched for a time, Lincoln and Charlie are starting to get a clearer image of what's going on around them. I think this is the first step towards a few of the Alt-Fringies breaking away to work with our gang in the blue universe. I'll take any excuse to keep Charlie Francis around, even if he's the one from the other side.

The Obeserver, more specifically September, is back this episode, too. It looks like Peter Bishop isn't the only key part in whatever the hell those pasty bald guys are planning. Peter's kid seems to be instrumental. I hope we start getting answers to how Peter, the baby, the machine, the observers, and the First People are all connected. Paging Sam Weiss...

According to an excited Tweet from one of the showrunners, 'Fringe' is getting renewed for a fouth season. While the numbers would have killed this show on any other night, the move to Friday, usually a slow night anyway, has been an improvement for FOX. Unfortunately, I can't help but think that season four will be the last. Despite becoming a more enjoyable and facinating program for it, 'Fringe' has certainly evolved into a very serialized and myth heavy show. There's no way a casual viewer could just flip on the tube and jump right in at this point, without doing some DVD homework*. My point is that the writers should start putting the pieces together next fall so that if there is no fifth year, us loyal fans will be left with a complete narrative.

*Not that it can't be done. I have friends that tore through the first two seasons just in time for the third. I've know others that have done so similarly with other shows such as 'Battlestar Galactica' and 'Lost'. Unfortunately, those two programs were either critical darlings and 'Lost' had huge numbers.


  1. I didn't read Walternate's rushing along of Fauxlivia's pregnancy as a way to save his grandson from McGuffin's Disorder (or whatever the hell she's tested positive for), rather a way to speed along access to a subject he IS willing to conduct tests on. Or perhaps this baby will be a bargaining chip to get Peter to come back to their universe.

    I'm still trying to figure out what a pay phone was doing in the Red Universe…

  2. BUT the accelerated pregnancy and aging process was already introduced back in the first season, so at least it doesn't feel like a plot device they introduced at the last minute.

  3. Good catch, David. I had totally forgotten about "old man baby". That was second episode, I think.