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Deconstruction Review of Fringe, Episode 17, Season 2, White Tulip

Posted by Karl Withakay on April 15, 2010

As usual, an episode synopsis can be found over at Scott’s Polite Dissent.

UPDATE  4-22-10 :  Scott’s review is now up.

When I talked to him 30 minutes before show time, he was planning on doing the review from his hotel room tonight.  I’ll know soon whether he was able to or not.

UPDATE:  It looks circumstances may have conspired against Scott being able to watch & review Fringe tonight, so his post probably won’t be up until Monday.  I should have known that him going swimming with the family 30 min before show time might result in not getting to Fringe in time.  Now I can’t talk to him about it all weekend, nuts.  Well, I’m kind of glad I thought he was going to post tonight so I was bullied into doing my post and getting it out of the way.  My whole schedule for the first half of next week would have been thrown out of whack if I waited until Monday night to do my Deconstruction.

No DVR, but I Managed OK

Well, I managed to write my Deconstruction from the hotel room, watching the episode in real time without benefit of a DVR with only one real problem where I wanted to copy down a more detailed quote than I was able to.

Heart Attack/ Heart Failure, Same Diff, Right?

I could buy collective heart failure caused by some Fringey external source, but heart attacks (otherwise known as myocardial infarctions) are the result of interruptions of the flow of blood to the heart, which causes some of the heart cells to die.  Sorry Peter, but leave the medicine to Walter.   (4-16-10 ETA: That is to say I don’t buy collective heart attacks as even Fringely plausible.)

Some Things for the Search Engines

ATP (adenosine triphosphate) is the basic energy source used in cells.  It is produced in the mitochondria, which are often called the fundamental energy centers of cells.

Quote of the Day #1

By Olivia once or twice, depending on how you view repeated time lines:

“Send up the Bishops, please.”

I assume everyone understood she wasn’t asking for a celebrity roast (sendup).

Fringe Unit Attracts Cadets that Passed on the Curve.

So rather than surveiling the location first to determine whether the suspect was present or not, the FBI Fringe unit just raids his premises to find him not there, risking alerting him and scaring him away when he arrives to find them there.  It didn’t really matter in this case since he had to ability to flee at will, but it COULD have mattered.  If he didn’t have the ability to time jump at will, he might have fled when he found the Fringe unit there rather than confront them.

And the Winner is: Olivia (& Me)

My prediction in my early notes was correct:  Olivia was the first to register a sense of déjà vu.

Einstein Sort of Predicted that, But Not Really

Technically, Einstein’s theories do predict that anything that travels faster then the speed of light would travel back in time, and technically, and though the equations are symmetric about the speed of light, various other logical absurdities come up when discussing faster then light travel (losing energy increases velocity– velocity approaches infinity as energy approaches zero).  Also, Einstein also stated that it is impossible for anything with mass to obtain the speed of light, and therefore impossible for any sublight object to obtain superluminal velocity, because it would first have to obtain the speed of light (which is impossible) before transitioning beyond it.

Do Those Come With any Antibiotic Ointment?

Peter Weller’s Character must have a lot of problems with infections with all those implants projecting out of his skin.

Quote of the Day #2

This is where I really missed having a DVR for this episode, having done my Deconstruction from my hotel room in Chicago.  I couldn’t get down the entire quote, so I’ll just put down what I got, and perhaps I will remember to update this post when I get home to my DVR.

EDIT 4-17-10: Thanks to commenter Josh for the full, exact quote.

Alistair Peck to Walter Bishop:

“God is science. God is polio and flu vaccines and MRI machines and artificial hearts. If you’re a man of science, then that’s the only faith we need.”

Laser Sights, Why Did it Have to Be Laser Sights?

I wish Hollywood wasn’t so obsessed with laser sights.  They are specialty use items that aren’t used nearly as much as TV & the movies think they are.  Snipers generally don’t use laser sights at all for numerous reasons.  Laser sights just aren’t as useful as you’d think they would be.  If you have a scope (especially one with an illuminated reticule like a swat sniper would), there’s really no use for the laser sight.  The only thing the laser sight would accomplish to alert the subject that they are being targeted, which serves no purpose unless you want them to duck.   Also, laser sights dim as the distance to the target increases.  In fact, lasers follow the same inverse square law of propagation of radiation that regular light does, such that if the brightness of the laser at, say 10 feet is X, than the brightness of the laser at 100 feet if 1/100 X.  Additionally, laser sights usually don’t have incremented distance adjusters like a scope does (never in my experience).  Once the laser is zeroed in at a certain range, there is no accurate, quick, and easy way of adjusting for a shorter or longer distance to the target as there is with a scope.  Lastly, you’d be surprised how hard it can be to find that laser point at any distance, particularly a long one, especially if the target is in a well lit area.

What’s Your Opinion?

Did Peck plan all along to die with his wife rather than save her, or was that a mistake?  Did he inadvertently cause her death by delaying her departure long enough for her car to get T-Boned by the truck?  My opinion is that he planned to die with her, and since his body was not previously discovered with hers in the wreck, she would have died either way.

Good Ending

I really like Pecks anonymous message to Walter, it was very touching.

A Note About Peter Weller

Not only is Peter Weller a fairly accomplished actor, but he also teaches a literature and fine arts class at Syracuse University.  He can also be seen on the excellent non-Hitler or WW II based show Engineering an Empire on the History Channel.


8 Responses to “Deconstruction Review of Fringe, Episode 17, Season 2, White Tulip”

  1. […] Karl was able to get his review posted. […]

  2. cstar said

    Robocop is back — Have I seen Peter Weller without mechanical body parts ?

  3. cordialdeconstruction said

    Try The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension.

    You probably never saw Odyssey 5.

  4. Josh said

    The full quote is

    “God is science. God is polio and flu vaccines and MRI machines and artificial hearts. If you’re a man of science, then that’s the only faith we need.”

  5. MaSh said

    You misspelled “déjà vu.”

  6. cordialdeconstruction said


  7. […] This week’s Fringe cipher was: SECRETS. A list of all previous Fringe reviews is available here. Karl has much more to say. […]

  8. […] Deconstruction Review of Fringe, Episode 17, Season 2, White Tulip April 2010 7 comments 4 […]

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