Fringe 3.4: Do Shapeshifters Dream of Electric Sheep?
Oki dok kiddos, you know the drill by now! Silver titles mean we are back in ‘our’ world with Faulivia doing the legwork. Which also means we have Peter, our lovable quirky Walter and the non beret version writing good essays of Astrid at the helm.
This week sees us dealing with the ever elusive shapeshifters and Faulivia’s growing anxiety about her ability to actually pull off this alternate identity thing. And oh the cross references and past influences of sci-fi tales of yore really come full circle in this one.
Lest we forget at any time that we are in fact dealing with alternate universes. Ones WITH Leonard Nimoy even! You know where I am heading here.. hiya Star Trek!
We kick off with the sitting Senator who is really a shapeshifter meeting an untimely semi demise after an accident. Shades of Mystique from Xmen anyone? Anywho, seems the SSS (Shape Shifting Senator) was only ‘mostly dead’. Dude, they should have totally named him Wesley! But a heavily tripping Walter finds ways to initiate neural activity via exploitation of the half human’s emotional connections. The hope is to be able to ask the SSS a few things about who and what he is and is doing. Hello Ash! But where Ian Holm was rather coherent in his ‘brains and weird cyborg blood go spodey’ state, our SSS on a slab merely spouts off random mutterings pertaining to his upcoming anniversary trip. Oddly his brain shows little activity, but parts of his lower spine light up light an LED art project.
But what does it mean?! Well, time for a food break, seeing as how a newly awakened sleeper shapeshifter is on the way to make the mostly dead dude an all the way dead dude. Newton awakens the guy who has the house and family in the burbs and doesnt wanna give it all up just because his original programming tells him he should. And here we enter the Matrix. Newton is Smith and the shapeshifters possess varying characteristics of the agents and the benevolent rogue programs like the Oracle. So far none of them seem to have our best interests at heart as a collective humanity, but they do seem to get attached to the humans in their lives. I do love candy.. or my wife in this case.
You gotta love Walter’s ongoing fascination with food, rather like Rusty from ‘Oceans 11’ but with less swagger and more childlike awe and loony bin crazy. It’s over a box of animal crackers that Walter has his House like epiphany.. of course! The brain is in the ass just like a stegosaurus! Thats why the lower spine was all shiny! You know its a big deal when Walter abandons his pudding.
So while Walter is off autopsying a shapeshifter’s ass and letting his pudding get warm, Peter ponders how the senator’s wife could have mind fucked herself into believing this thing was her husband despite noticing the small but important changes. Not unlike his nagging questions about ‘Olivia’s’ behavior. But rather than dance around it, he tells her straight out the things he has noticed. A dude who actually vocalizes his concerns? My god this IS science fiction! I kid, I kid. But it is a refreshing change from the normal ‘how can we drag this out for weeks and weeks?’ usually seen on serial shows.
But before ‘liv can answer its off to the lab, Batman! Something’s amiss, namely Walter as evidenced by his pudding being at the table without him. The sleeper shifter is there and gives Walter a nasty cut on his noggin. These guys totally remind me of the dudes with the ice pick thingy from X Files. With our adorable mad scientist incapacitated he then removes the bizarre metal vertebrae ass brain mechanism and takes off back to his family. Since he refuses to move on and take another identity, Newton takes him out. Only to be thanked for his troubles by being chased and caught by ‘liv and Peter.
Faulivia has a busy night. She slips Newton the digitial equivalent of a cyanide pill (which looks like a wafer thin SD card) while in custody, but not before he hits her where it hurts when it comes to naming her fears about being able to actually pull off this increasingly challenging assignment. Later she summons Peter to her place under the guise of talking, only to seduce him.. most likely in the hopes of making him forget his concerns over her current quirks. I mean she IS from an alternate universe, who knows what they teach kids in sex ed over there?
So we still dont know what on either earth the main big plot is, but we have an idea as to how they are going about it. And now Walter has the whole of Massive Dynamic at his whim, if only he can stay off the LSD long enough to not freak out its best scientists by talking of greater consciousness while taking off his pants. And do Shapeshifters Dream of Electric Sheep? I dont know, but seems they have a weakness for actually forming emotional attachments to their families, so maybe Scottish shapeshifters do?
So there we have it, Season 3 Episode 4. But before we take our leave, its glyph time!
Stay tuned for next week: Amber
Kink In Motion