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October 13, 2015

Fringe: Bound

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jan 21st 2009 8:50AM
Fringe: Bound
(S01E11) "Things like this used to happen in the lab all the time. It makes me nostalgic." - Walter, after catching a giant slug under a trashcan

I love this show! And seeing it after its weeks-long hiatus just reminds me once again how much I love it and why. Part of it's because they throw little clues at us, and we're tasked to try and figure them out. Where did we see this guy before? What does this mean? How does it tie into the past? Are these new characters part of a larger conspiracy? It's a fun puzzle that isn't dumbed down for the audience.

First of all, kudos to my son, who put two and two together on Mitchell Loeb right off the bat. If you missed the two seconds at the beginning where he took off his mask, you wouldn't get that til later on. That's the thing with Fringe. If you miss a few seconds, they could be really important seconds. And how dumb of Loeb to wear the same shoes he wears at work! He's a federal agent, for gosh sakes. You'd think that would occur to him. Anyway, I'm glad they didn't spend weeks and weeks with Olivia in captivity. That would have sucked.

As usual, there's a lot going on here. We've got Mr. Harris with his sexual assault record handling the Fringe division of Homeland Security. How convoluted is that? He's on the outs with both Olivia, who helped to convict him, as well as Broyles, who doesn't think twice about going around Harris and telling Olivia to investigate her own abduction. Then again, what's up with Harris handcuffing her to her hospital bed and not wanting her to investigate? If he's a bad guy, that's pretty darn obvious.

We've got Olivia's sister, Rachel, and niece, Ella. I'm sure they're not at all what they seem. I don't think this is just some side story involving Olivia's personal life. I think they're part of a bigger conspiracy. And of course, now I'm wondering what the significance of the Magic 8-Ball is.

We've got something brewing with the Centers for Disease Control and, I'm sure, other organizations. Who is actually on the right side here? At this point, it's hard to tell. I'm sure Loeb wasn't just talking insanity when he told Olivia: "We were actually trying to save you. We were going to let you go. You have no idea what you've done. Not a clue." It's maddening that he didn't offer more information at the time. Now I have no idea who's on the right side here, whether it's Broyles, Nina Sharp, Harris or who knows who else.

But it does sound plausible that Loeb's job with the CDC – heading up a classified task force to oversee the country's preparedness to fight off an epidemic – occurred because there's such an epidemic on the horizon and someone knows about it.

If Mitchell Loeb was indeed coordinating the investigation of Olivia's abduction, could he, in fact, have been saving her from something? And if so, who put him in charge of it? We're led to believe that Nina abducted her to get John Scott's memory out of her head, but maybe it's the complete opposite. I don't believe that John was a traitor. I believe he was working to thwart some big thing that was happening inside certain organizations, be it FBI, CDC and/or others.

And while Harris seems like a total loser, when he told Olivia so weirdly, "Oh, we'll keep him safe," (meaning Dr. Simon), could he have been insinuating that they'll keep him safe just as Mitchell Loeb told Olivia that he was trying to keep HER safe? Could Harris actually be a good guy? It seems like we might get to a point where everything we think is one way is actually the other way.

Other Stuff:

I love that Olivia can kick ass with the best of them. She purred through that escape at the beginning with Jack Bauer-like precision, then turned the tables on Samantha Loeb like a pro. But my favorite kick-ass scene was when she slugged Mitchell Loeb after telling him, "You're under arrest."

When we learned that the slugs grew from a yellow, powdery, egg-like material that was activated by water, I couldn't help but think about the seahorses we used to buy from the back page of comic books.

How ironic that the common cold might be the thing to bring mankind to its knees. But how funny that Walter would give the slug a decongestant. "She's a giant cold virus, after all."

Funny and not so surprising that while the rest of them are trying to capture the slug in the class auditorium, Walter is busy being fascinated by the science stuff on the screen.

Olivia, Peter and Walter really worked as a team in this episode, especially when Peter calls Olivia in the nick of time and says, "Samantha Loeb is going to kill you. Get out of the house right now." Yeah, I was practically cheering at that. Also when Olivia caught Samantha completely off guard.

Walter, the matchmaker? His awkward matchmaking between Peter and Olivia was sweet and childlike.

Visions of Andy Sipowicz when Olivia asked to be alone with Mitchell in the interrogation room and snarled, "You want your wife, Mitch? Do you wanna know who pulled the trigger? You're looking at her."

Did anyone see The Observer?

Favorite Quotes:

Peter (on Loeb's comment that he was trying to save Olivia): "He was messing with you. The man's insane, Olivia."
Walter: "I concur, in the category of it takes one to know one."

Peter: "Walter, what are you doing?"
Walter: "I'm dosing a caterpillar."
Peter: "Dosing ... as in LSD."
Walter: "It's a special blend."
Peter: "I see. Hey, guess what just happened? Finding out that my father's giving drugs to bugs just became a typical moment in my life."
Walter: "It's wonderful, isn't it?"

Fringe' Show & Cast Photos

    FRINGE Walter (John Noble), Peter (Joshua Jackson), Olivia (Anna Torv) and Broyles (Lance Reddick) enter a governement warehouse to examine a mysterious cylinder found among the debris of a construction site explosion in the episode "The Arrival." Airs Tuesday, September 30, 2008.


    FRINGE Peter (Joshua Jackson), Olivia (Anna Torv), Walter (John Noble) and Broyles (Lance Reddick) return to the lab to gather more information on a mysterious cylinder found among the debris of a construction site explosion in the episode "The Arrival." Airs Tuesday, September 30, 2008.


    FRINGE Olivia (Anna Torv) chases a suspect through the woods in the episode "The Arrival." Airs Tuesday, September 30, 2008.


    FRINGE Walter (John Noble, L) and Peter (Joshua Jackson, R) examine a mysterious cylinder found among the debris of a construction site explosion in the episode "The Arrival." Airs Tuesday, September 30, 2008.


    FRINGE Olivia (Anna Torv) chases a suspect through the woods in the episode "The Arrival". Airs Tuesday, September 30, 2008.


    NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 13: Actress Jasika Nicole attends FOX's "Fringe" premiere during the 2008 New York Television Festival at New World Stage on September 13, 2008 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Jasika Nicole

    Getty Images

    Executive Producers John Wirth, Josh Friedman and James Middleton arrive at The Paley Center and TV Guide

    Jean Baptiste Lacroix/WireImage.com

    Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Molly Stanton arrive at The Paley Center and TV Guide

    Jean Baptiste Lacroix/WireImage.com

    Jesse Tyler Ferguson arrives at The Paley Center and TV Guide

    Jean Baptiste Lacroix/WireImage.com

    Mark Valley arrives at The Paley Center and TV Guide

    Jean Baptiste Lacroix/WireImage.com

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Best line ever:

Walter: "You're like a question machine!"

January 27 2009 at 1:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We have probably watched our last ep of Fringe. The wayout science is fun. But watching inept agents run around in contrived circles is just too annoying. Way to much Olivia in this episode and not enough Walter and son. And the clunky way we introduce this annoying Harris character. Lousy lousy writing, and such a pitiful fight with Samantha Loeb, who's the trained FBI agent?

January 26 2009 at 2:32 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

With all the pseudo-science on this show, the hardest thing for me to believe is that Harris would:
(1) Get his job back after the allegations made about him. IIRC, he got off on a technicality of some sort. If so, that would only prevent him from being prosecuted. OTOH, he'd be done at the DOD or FBI.
(2) Let's assume he overcame the last hurdle, never in a million years would he be allowed to investigate the "Fringe" unit, and in particular, Olivia. It wouldn't happen. (3) But if it did happen, nobody would give a shit about what he said about Olivia. Or it would come under incredibly scrutiny if it was considered at all.

The whole scenario was ludicrous, but, worse, it was wholly unnecessary to create this backstory. The writers could have simply made him an asshole. There are plenty of shows that feature some hard-nosed supervisor out to get the protagonist.

The only way I can believe this scenario is if it is later revealed that there's a big conspiracy among higher-ups to shut down the department and Harris is the guy they figured would be the most aggressive.

The writers also constantly rely on the lousy TV plot device of having the main character simply not tell people relevant information. It heightens the tension, but makes Olivia look like an idiot. As someone mentioned above, why didn't she mention the evidence piled in the dirt? Why didn't she just say to her "partner" at the FBI how she was going to prove Loeb was a bad guy? Did she tell him during the commercial?

There are certain things I'm willing to overlook for the sake of sci-fi, but they need to get the stuff grounded in reality correct.

January 22 2009 at 2:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to A_B's comment


January 24 2009 at 4:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Clearly the sister is going to bail leaving Olivia with the kid.

January 22 2009 at 2:14 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
John Stewart

Last night they pretty much copied off, Slither. Next episode they are copying off a mix between Pulse and The Ring. This isn't about fringe science anymore, it's about taking horror movies and throwing a scientific spin on it by adding in scenes with Walter Bishop.

What's with giving Liv a family and home setting now. I really feel like they are trying to make her into Sydney Bristow, but without the emotional payoff since they just threw her family in now and already the episode - surprise surprise, her nieces is in danger.

The show is mildly entertaining at best, but it's not as great as everyone makes it out to be. This isn't Lost, it isn't Alias, there is no master plan that's going to put all these little details into focus. This series is going to be an average jumble of things into one convoluted ending.

January 21 2009 at 7:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I feel Loeb is akin to Ben from Lost--he means well and he doesn't mean well. His view of good and evil is much different than the black and white version most of us accept as good and evil.

January 21 2009 at 7:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This first part of this eppy was like a horror movie for me: I am usually okay with dead bodies and monsters, but nothing terrifies me in the way a slimy, spikey (fast, ugly) slug-virus can.
I really like the show, it's titillating and funny, but it had frustrating faults. The something that really frustrated me: the "confession" was not really a confession, it was more like a vague outlet to more questions: Who is "they?" How did they try to "save" Olivia? If he was really confessing, he would put us (the audience and the Fringe characters) out of our misery/mystery. The other interesting question - why kill a couple of epidemiologists? I am thinking, maybe they wanted to experiment on an epidemic, and maybe they were not taking CSF out of Olivia, but injecting something in, which once the epidemic starts, would protect her against the slug. Maybe by Loeb asking Samantha to kill Olivia, he was going to plan to then revive her, or something, as they almost seem to be able to do.

January 21 2009 at 1:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Yes, this was an engaging episode. When Sanford Harris read down Olivia it really became obvious that to a 3rd party observer she really is running with a strange and not so credible crowd. The gross slug thing that comes from peoples' mouths is just so X-Files-ish, whatever. Also a little over the plausibility line is when Olivia gets a spinal tap and within a short time is overpowering four menacing guys - um, yeh, girlpower go. But when she gets the drop on Samantha later it turns into huge wrestling match. Fine, moving on, would've liked to have seen Mr Jones and Nina enter the storyline here, too.

January 21 2009 at 1:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I love this show too. I don't know what's going on, but I like it. I liked this part at the end from walter (i'm paraphrasing)

I missed you when you were missing too...but not as much as him.

January 21 2009 at 1:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Really? People like this show?

Everything is so dumbed down.
1. "He got a job with the CDC, the Centers for Disease Control"

Seriously do you think an FBI agent doesn't know what the CDC is? Only reason to state the obvious is because you think your audience are made up of a bunch of retards.

2. When she tells the head guy that Walter is looking at evidence that she hid after she escaped abduction he didn't seem to care one bit that she had EVIDENCE FROM HER ABDUCTION! No instead he wanted to talk about other things. Uhhh hello, isn't that rather important that there is evidence and wouldn't he want to know what the evidence was???

3. Oversight guy who has the ability to call in the feds to tranq their own agent who is just standing there in the dirt waiting for them and then handcuff her to a hospital bed? Seriously? How stupid. I'm amazed this show made it past mid-season.

January 21 2009 at 12:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Mike's comment
Chip Douglas

Yeah, spelling out CDC is pretty condescending.

About the evidence, maybe he already knows what the evidence is? That's why he did not ask her. He may be more interested in catching the people behind the abduction because he knows what the evidence means.

Harris seems to have a lot of power, but he does not have as many answers as he leads us to believe. There are supposed to be holes in his interrogation skills.

I can see why you may not like the show. This is Hollywood entertainment. It is still time better spent than watching "Eleventh Hour" or the "Mentalist"

I like that there are more questions than answers and I like that that I ask even more questions. I like that it demands that you take a leap of faith. If these concepts are not entertaining, than this may not be the best show for you.

January 21 2009 at 4:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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