Fringe

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Daniel: B | 3 USERS: B+
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Boyfriend In A Coma, Oh No

Back at Fringe HQ, nobody is working since Olivia's not around to make frowny faces at them, so they're eating Chinese food and watching Spongebob Squarepants. Walter loves it. Peter answers the phone with "Nuthouse," and it's Olivia telling him she needs him and his father when they go after Steig so Walter can question Steig and make a vaccine. Peter says they'll meet her outside, and manages not to call her sweetheart.

So Olivia sets up with the rest of the FBI assault team outside Steig's apartment, because you know how she loves her first-hand knowledge and everything. The team goes in. There's no one in the place, but there's a rug with a corner sticking up at an odd angle, so Olivia lifts it up and finds a trap-door underneath, and underneath that, a little laboratory with computers and caged animals. It looks exactly like the setup in the storage locker. Perhaps he just sometimes felt like driving for hours?

Meanwhile, in the car, Peter is looking over the FBI file on Steig -- nice of Olivia to just leave it lying around like that -- while Walter frets about his son showing signs of hypertension.

"When this is over, please don't send me back," says Walter. "This experience -- you woke me up; you can't just put me back to sleep." Peter says none of this was his idea. Walter says that whatever punishment Peter thinks he deserves, he swears he's already endured it. Peter doesn't respond. But it's a good thing he's out in the car, because even with all the dozens of agents in this assault team, nobody is stationed by the BACK DOOR, and here comes Steig out the door and down the alley. Peter starts yelling, and chases after him, across streets, dodging traffic, and down steps. Olivia follows. Steig runs into an apartment building, and through units, and then up onto the rooftop, and leaping over onto the next fire escape -- it's all very Bourne Ultimatum. Olivia hurtles from the rooftop onto the fire escape, and then down onto a Dumpster. She's doing all right for someone who was recently drugged and given a skull implant and mind-melded with her comatose brother. Hey, where's Peter? Oh, there he is -- pulling the ol' "I'm behind you and then somehow I just appear in front of you" routine, knocking Steig down and then pounding the ever-lovin' shit out of him. Olivia finally shows up -- good thing, since the rest of the FBI is nowhere in sight -- and you think she's going to pull Peter off Steig before Peter beats him to death. Instead she just sticks a gun in Steig's face and snarls, "We've got some questions." Question one: which Steven Seagal scriptwriter is handling this dialogue?

So now we're back at the federal building and apparently everyone is content to let Olivia handle this on her own, because the only ones watching (via closed-circuit television) her interrogate Steig are, naturally, Peter and Walter. Well, Peter's watching. Walter's more entranced by the 21st-century coffeemaker. If the two of them are there to pay attention to what Steig's saying, then maybe Walter should be, you know, paying attention.

Olivia tries to act tough with Steig, who wants immunity. She tells him to write down the contents of the storage locker, and then they can talk about it. "I have nothing to say," says Steig.

Peter, having seen which door Olivia came out of and after watching Steig stare cockily into the camera, decides to stroll into the room and do some interrogating of his own, and by this point I think the FBI needs to consider suing the show's producers and maybe even Fox for the portrayal of absolute ineptitude. Peter threatens to extract the contaminated fluids from John's body and then give them to Steig. And then he smacks Steig in the hand with his coffee cup and Olivia comes running in to pull Peter off Steig, but Peter still manages to smack Steig hard again.

Guess that did the trick, because the Fantastic Fringe Four (feat. Farnsworth) are back at Walter's lab, and he and his son bicker about how to deliver the antidote, and then decide on intravenous blood transfusion, which won't overwhelm his body.

Another sciencey montage. Beakers! Test tubes! Burners! Keep in mind that this has all happened within the past twenty-four hours.

Olivia takes a break in the upstairs hall from all the montaging going on and strolls right past Broyles, who asks how things are going. She says Walter says it'll take a while, but things are "auspicious." Then she notices Broyles staring at her. "You've done some serious work here," he says, rattling off the list of everything she's done, omitting only "stopping time so you can actually get everything done." "We're impressed," he says. "Who's we?" she asks.

He merely says that what happened on the plane might be more than simple terrorism. "'Simple' terrorism?" she says. He reaches into his briefcase for a file, and tells her in the past nine months there have been three-dozen authenticated incidents like the Hamburg flight, including:

John Thompson, a kid who went missing ten years ago, just turned up halfway around the world. Hadn't aged a day. What's more, almost fifty other kids who went missing that same year have the exact same story.

Fishermen in Sri Lanka report a low-flying airplane emitting a high-pitched frequency that blows out all their windows. An hour later, in the same spot, a massive earthquake triggers a tidal wave that kills 83,000 people.

But wait, there's more! A woman wakes from a coma and starts rattling off numbers that turn out to be real-time co-ordinates of their aircraft carriers in the Pacific, information that's classified "above top secret." He asks her to come work for him, and she reacts to a job offer by angrily stomping outside.

Broyles chases after her, saying that they're calling this "the pattern," because it looks like someone is experimenting, only using the whole world as a lab. I'm unclear how the word "pattern" arose as a result of that, but I suppose Broyles couldn't say, "they're calling this 'the pattern' because J.J. Abrams thinks it sounds cool and he has no idea what to do with it yet but he makes us shitloads of money."

He steamrolls her protests and says she can have whoever and whatever she wants to get her job done, and starts talking about all the people around them going about their daily business and having no idea what's going on. Well, it's not for a lack of government agents discussing it openly in public, that's for sure. Olivia says she wants to go back to before. "Dunham. I don't think you can," he says. She walks away, Broyles glaring after her. Dammit, Lance Reddick needs this! Don't fuck this up for Lance Reddick!

Another science montage. I think I've got the division of labor figured out: Olivia takes care of looking forlorn, Peter has the crossing-arms-and-brooding under control, and Walter does all the actual work. On his bed, John's skin is already looking better. It's just kind of veiny now. Suddenly he inhales, and Walter calls for Olivia, who's elated he's awake. "I had a dream about you," he says. Olivia laughs and they make goo-goo eyes at each other for three hours or so.

After a quick chat with the doctor in which we learn that John should be able to leave the hospital in about a week, Olivia goes to visit Steig, who asks her if he didn't tell her everything she wanted. "Don't worry, our immunity agreement holds," she says. "There's still a whole lot we have to talk about, like why you killed your own brother and who you're selling your work to." Steig says he's not selling it; he was threatened by someone in Olivia's office, and the proof is hidden next to his apartment building under a barrel.

Olivia finds a plastic bag with a microcassette in it, and goes back to her car for the recorder she has in her glove box. She does the magical only-on-television two-second rewind to the exact point she needs, and presses play.

"Who is this?"

"We had an exchange agreement."

"There have been other bidders. Today, the airplane was a demonstration."

"You've drawn unwanted attention, s

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Fringe

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