Episode: Fringe 2.13 – “The Bishop Revival”
Original Air Date: January 28, 2010
Well, in the words of my first childhood crush (Indiana Jones), “Nazis. I hate these guys.” Appropriate, because a creepy, never-aging Nazi scientist is this week’s case. No, it was not an episode that had to do with the main story and that sucked since the show is going on another hiatus for the Winter Olympics after episode 2.14. On the plus side, it didn’t remind me of an X-Files episode.
The subject of this ep was both interesting and horrifying at the same time, but the episode as a whole wasn’t that interesting again. My usual one-off episode gripes apply, with the added bonus of: Why is all this crazy stuff still only happening in the Northeastern part of the US? I mean, not that I wanted the jerk Nazi story to take place anywhere near where I live, but it would be nice if not everything had to happen in one spot every week.
The show starts out at a wedding where everyone who is a blood relative to Nana up there suffocates on seemingly nothing. Nana (a holocaust survivor) recognized the weasely little creep scientist too late. Rather quickly, Walter figures out that whatever toxin was released it was designed to only target specific people. This is after he tells Peter that he should marry Olivia because she can “see right through him.” Oh, Walter!
Back at the lab, they do the Major Mass Spect thing and test the funny-smelling candles for the toxin (and that’s where it was because heat is the catalyst). Walter informs Olivia that while a wedding is a perfect place to conduct an experiment of this nature (you have your control group and your target group), it will happen again because a scientist has to be able to reproduce his results. And it does, at a coffee shop, where they find out the toxin is specific to certain biological traits (e.g., eye/hair color). Herr Doktor spots Walter while enjoying the death he has created, and he recognizes him because Walter looks just like his father, apparently. Eventually, he breaks into Peter and Walter’s apartment and steals one of Walter’s sweaters for biological samples.
During this time, Walter has figured out the molecular makeup of the toxin and that it is based on his father’s work (the seahorse is his “signature”). He created this toxin while working as a spy in the midst of the Nazis for the Allied forces. Walter goes to find the German books his father smuggled his notes to the US with and Peter has to admit that he sold them years earlier. He claims it was for money while Walter was locked up in St. Claire’s but later admits to Olivia that he had done it out of spite (those books were Walter’s most prized possessions). Turns out the guy who bought them is a cracked-out collage artist who used one whole book to make a collage Hitler portrait and is wondering why he can’t get into any galleries. Yeah. Anyhow, they get the books back from him (and the portrait), but he’s not the one updating the toxin and testing it.
Through some investigative work, the team eventually figures out who the mad scientist is that isn’t named Walter. They head to his house to try and catch him (but he’s too sneaky and weasely), and instead walk Walter right into a miasma created just for him. Of course he doesn’t die, but NO ONE mentions that this guy found the Ark of the Covenant from that FBI storage warehouse! They do figure out that he’s planning on taking a bunch of toxin in candles to the World Tolerance Initiative Conference. Angry that this man has used his father’s work to kill people because of their race, Walter tailors a toxin to target the mad scientist and kills him before his toxin has a chance to be released in the conference. Nazis foiled once again. I half expected him to shake his fist angrily in Walter’s direction and say, “I’ll get you next time, Gadget!”
While Walter does discover the man’s DNA is that of someone over 100 years old, they never make the connection that he was working in the lab with Gramps Bishop back in Nazi-occupied Germany. So how he remained youthful this entire time was never addressed.
Here are this episode’s glyphs:
Rating: 3 / 5 Stars
You’d think they’d choose a mad scientist from one of the other axis powers every once in a while, just to shake things up.
Anybody can make a scientist seem creepy by giving him a German accent. But if you can make him creepy with an Italian accent, then you’ve got talent.
I see what you’re saying. However, I would counter that will all things consider, the very least we can do in entertainment is ALWAYS make Nazis the go-to baddies. For the rest of time.