Deconstruction Review of Fringe, Episode 7 Season 4, Wallflower
Posted by Karl Withakay on November 18, 2011
A Gold/Yellow Episode
As always, an episode synopsis will be found over at Scott’s Polite Dissent
Transfer That Man to the Fringe Division, ASAP!
The officer gets a little spooked, and he discharges the entire magazine of his Beretta 92F with no target in sight and no concern where the bullets might end up. He’s definitely Fringe material.
The officer discharged only 4 rounds, which means that starting with one in the chamber, he had only 3 rounds in a 15 round magazine.
Also, the slide did not lock back on the last round like it should have, and the officer pulled the trigger a fifth time on an empty chamber. Before it was mentioned the he emptied his entire clip (see below on that), I considered the possibility that the fifth round was a dud, and he had not emptied the magazine, but the dialog nixed that possibility. Perhaps the officer had a low quality magazine with a weak spring and intentionally did not fully load the magazine to prevent over compressing the spring, but if your magazine can’t reliably feed a full load of rounds , it’s a liability and needs to be replaced or resprung. A weak magazine spring is a common cause of slide lock failures.
A clip is a device (usually a bent strip of metal) that holds rounds of ammunition to facilitate loading certain firearm magazines. A magazine is a device that holds and feeds ammunition in a gun. The Beretta 92F has a detachable 15 round box magazine and does not use clips. Most modern pistols designed after WW I do not use clips at all.
Revisiting White Fright
I’ve covered this before, but despite Walter’s credulity on the subject, fright can not turn hair white. Hair is not living, and no chemical process in the body can affect its color once it is grown.
Also, I don’t believe fright can make you go albino either. You can go momentarily pale if the blood flushes from your face, but that’s not the same as loosing your skin pigment, and you really wouldn’t be any paler than your average corpse. Fright certainly won’t cause your eyes to go red.
If It Bleeds, We Can Kill It
Chromatophores and the animals that have them are pretty cool, but they’re not Harry Potter invisibility cloaks. They can blend into and with backgrounds, but they cannot become transparent such that you can look right through them.
MayI Please Borrow The Multiverse Manipulator Sometime, Broyles?
Broyles won’t even let Peter walk around in public without an armed escort to limit his interaction with other people. Does Peter really think they will let him play around with the big, scary machine built to destroy universes?
“Tell Broyles, Science has no price tag!”
U-Gene originally had a pigment problem, and was treated with chromatophores that made him able to be invisible by dynamically blending in with the environment around him, but he’s not bending light around him like an invisibility cloak would, so he should be creating shadows. Also, no explanation was giving as to how these cells could accurately reproduce 3D lifelike images in real time capable of making him not noticeable to people looking in his direction, if not right at him. That’s some major processing power to do that.
Additionally, if his original problem was a lack of pigment, why wouldn’t stealing other people’s pigment be a workable substitute cure (at least in the Fringaverse) in place of the chromatophores? Yes it was a genetic deformity so I would expect he would need to constantly replenish his pigment, but I don’t see why it would revert him to his original, pre-cure state and kill him
Was He Being Politically Correct?
Why target Caucasians for acquiring pigment; wouldn’t U-Gene have had to kill fewer people if he went after darker skinned people?
Magic UV Light
That mouse didn’t fluoresce under the UV light, it simply became visible as if a normal light was shining on it. Apparently the super chromatophores absorb UV light and re-emit it at the exact same wavelength of light that would be normally be reflected by normal cells when regular visible spectrum white light shines on them. Also, apparently U-Gene’s and the mouse’s hair is made up of these chromatophores as it’s also invisible. I wonder about the mouse droppings.
Bad Plot Convenience Theater
Olivia’s line about the search taking too long and them needing to split up was entirely contrived to separate her on her own; it made no practical sense.
What’s the hurry? Isn’t a slow, methodical search better? Why not at least break up into teams of two? Isn’t it good to have someone backing you up? If I ran the Fringe division, I’d have a rule: Always have a partner, and never leave your wingman under any circumstances. No teams smaller than two people.
Olivia Dunham, Elite Government Agent
Is anybody keeping count of how many times Olivia has lost or carelessly discharged her firearm over the years?
“Your life is an experiment. You have to find out where you belong, find your own place in the world.”
Things We have Learned In This Episode
Massive Dynamic used to be called Kelvin Genetics, and it had an insurance subsidiary called Cypronic Inc.
Nina Sharp in this continuity appears to be evil, though there is good reason to believe she may have been evil in the other continuity as well.
Olivia appears to have a pain killer problem, and she has antibiotics (Ampicillin) in her medicine cabinet.
Olivia and NerdLee may be hooking up at some point. Obviously there’s a mutual interest there, and Peter seems OK with it, believing that this is not his Olivia.
U-Gene was Experiment 69545
I Will Not Be Pushed, Filed, Stamped, Indexed, Briefed, Debriefed or Numbered. My Life is My Own.
Did anybody else get a little “The Prisoner” vibe at the end there for a moment? (Skip to the 1 min 50 sec mark if you don’t want to watch the whole video.)