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December 20, 2014

Review: Fringe - The Bishop Revival

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jan 29th 2010 4:32AM
Fringe: The Bishop Revival
(S02E14) An episode titled "The Bishop Revival" almost has a little religious overtone. But Fringe this week was all about Nazis and Walter's dad's involvement with them. Turns out Dr. Robert Bishop (a.k.a. Bishov or Bishoff) was affiliated with the University of Berlin and came to this country in 1943. Also that he was a spy for the allies, smuggling scientific secrets to the Americans. Thus the setup for this episode and a little backstory for Walter.

First of all, how fun to see Walter driving the wagon and smashing into some trash cans, much to Peter's chagrin. And then telling Peter that he's stashed his wedding tux ("Purple never goes out of style") away for whenever Peter gets married ... to Olivia. Now that I've got that out of the way...

I'm not really sure what to think of this episode. To me, the most interesting part of it wasn't so much about the villain and his diabolical "scientific experiment" to target specific victims. Rather, it was about the fact that Walter's dad was a spy in Germany! I mean, it certainly explains a few things about Walter's mad scientist tendencies. And the fact that he'd held onto those German books with the all of the scientific data scribbled in them says a lot.

Or as he told Olivia after using the German's own scientific warfare against him, "Family is very important to me. There's nothing I wouldn't do."

Ok, that's a far cry from the relationship -- or non-relationship -- that he and Peter had prior to him going into the mental institution. Peter was so ticked at Walter that he sold some of his most prized possessions -- his dad's books with his handwritten data tucked inside. Even if somebody's really miffed at a parent, that's a pretty drastic thing to do. It's like selling the family Bible or something. But then, we know that Walter was a much different person prior to his mental collapse.

There were also some of the little Fringe symbols scattered among this episode -- the seahorse and the German guy eating an apple in the apartment, to name two.

Other stuff:

Walter said: "A scientist always tries to re-create his results." Hmmm, could he also be talking about the alternate universe here?

Interesting artwork by the artist who bought Walter's books.

Olivia's ticked at Walter for killing the guy? That's the vibe I got anyway.

Agent Broyles is making a habit of letting Walter off the hook for the greater good.

So how did the German get the formula? It must have something to do with the very last photo -- the one in which the German guy appeared to be standing behind a young Walter. Is that your take on it? And why did the German look to be the same age as the current day? Could he be some sort of German-equivalent Observer?

Leave your theories in the comments below.

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23 Comments

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PauletteSabol

OMG.........Fringe is one of my favorite programs. If you people have so much negative reactions to it, why not just change the channel and watch one of those stupid, fake bachelor, or I can dance or I can sing programs. At least Fringe has a story line and yes some of what they get in to is actually factual; history. GREAT program.

February 03 2010 at 12:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Christopath

Personally I liked the episode.

Was it just me, or was the Civic Centre at the end the same building they used for the 4400 Centre on "4400"?

February 02 2010 at 7:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Prhime

i think he was a german observer type. the opening scene in the wedding has the grandma (lets call her bubby) recognizing him and is in disbelief that it is him.

February 01 2010 at 11:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
literaryluv

Honestly, I found the show extremely interesting - the one thing that bothers me about Fringe is their absolute violation of the 4th Amendment every single time someone is "not home." Besides that, I am always on board.

January 30 2010 at 4:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Picviewer

Nice writing but helps to listen or actually follow the whole story before just writing a skimmed view of the show before writing.

The German scientist was the same one in the photo who was probably a assistant to Walters father at the time. That is how he got the formula as it was the same exact one hence the tagging of the seahorse in the genetic encoding. More than likely he experimented on himself at some point for some anti-aging treatment as one of them mentioned the dna recovered was over 100 years old and wasn't in a database. Not a far leap to that as doing genetic experimentation for killing someone/group based on a trait could also in theory remove a trait ie aging. But probably missed the part where Peter or Walter mentioned the Germans pushed science. Or missed any history class since WW2 which would have mentioned the same thing but I digress. The survivor recognized him as said experiments were probably taking place at the same concentration camp.

January 30 2010 at 1:48 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Chuck

Does anyone get the feeling like this show is definitely headed for Peter discovering the truth about "other" Peter being dead? The last couple of episodes have really pushed that subplot along, from Walter's mentioning it offhand to Astrid, to his comments last night about "family'--I think that is going to be a major thing very soon.

January 29 2010 at 9:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Creep

Nazis are evil and deserve to die. Nazi killers should be rewarded for their good deeds.

January 29 2010 at 6:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Brett Alan

I enjoyed the episode. However, to pick up on some of the discussion of last week's episode, I'm missing the larger story-arc stuff. I don't need it in every episode, but it seems like it's been ages since we've even seen Blair Brown and Massive Dynamic, let alone Leonard Nimoy and the alternate universe.

January 29 2010 at 4:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Brett Alan's comment
Z!

you must have missed the preview for next week... get ready for more alt universe action!

January 30 2010 at 11:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
OneCharmingBastard

Having just seen the overnights from last night, let's agree to disagree about the actual plot of this episode and celebrate the fact that Fringe scored a 6.0 in HH and a 3.0 in 18-49, quite possibly beating CSI (which for the record was a repeat) - as long as this show can go another season (or three) I can stand a little inconsistency with history

January 29 2010 at 2:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Nevermore

Another thing that bugged me was that blatant American superiority complex.

Walter killing the Nazi and Broyles silently approving because "Nazis are evil, they deserve to die".

Walter's reaction to the artist's Hitler collage.

Walter proudly proclaiming that his father was a spy for the Allies.

The Nazi frantically declaring Bishop's father a "traitor".

All of that came across as a blatant "Durr Nazis evil America superior good". As I said, Flash Forward was able to do a story with a Nazi villain that was a lot less kneejerk and even allowed for a more sympathetic look at contemporary German. (Also, the German dialogue was pleasantly genuine.)

Then again, the world of Fringe IS terribly black and white. Does it bug anyone else how the main characters on this show repeatedly crap all over civil rights, and the show presents that not just as a necessary evil, but as something not even worth thinking twice about?

January 29 2010 at 11:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to Nevermore's comment

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