Fringe: Do Shapeshifters Dream of Electric Sheep?   Rewatch 
April 5, 2015 10:35 PM - Season 3, Episode 4 - Subscribe

Transactional needs — lemonade entrepreneurs — it's in the eyes — God doesn't need pants — searching for treasure — nice monsters — talking to the dead — animal crackers should have dinosaurs — an awkward lift encounter — time to move on — vacuum cleaners — crossing the line.
posted by Athanassiel (9 comments total)
 
Poor Astro. Once again, Walter walks away while Astrid is minding him and something bad happens.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 11:03 PM on April 5, 2015


I really, really wanted someone in this episode to say "I'll tell you about my mother" and then just let loose. Or make a reference to a tortoise. Or maybe even leave behind a little origami unicorn. Alas, no joy.

I like the way we start to see the shapeshifters as more complicated in this episode. Senator Van Horn was able to fool his wife, Broyles and presumably everyone in Congress for several years. But to what purpose? And Ray Duffy's story was pretty heartbreaking too. I mean, sure, he would have killed that guy originally, but doesn't he have a right to some happiness, stability and the comforts of home? Guess not. This underscores the differences between the universes, I think - red universe is much more on a war footing, constantly on the look out for bits of their universe degrading; rationed or hard-to-obtain food like avocadoes and coffee; even the air quality can be questionable. It's a perilous place. Meanwhile, blue universe is comfortable, complacent, unaware of how lucky it is because why should it be any other way? Not hard to believe a shapeshifter would want that instead.

Also not hard to draw some parallels in our own world.

I think part of why the blue universe episodes are grating at the moment is Fauxlivia. I really don't like her, although many of the reasons (her mercilessness, her calculated and manipulative actions, her lying) are of course necessary for the role that she's in. You can't be a spy in enemy territory and wear your heart on your sleeve. If we didn't have Olivia, I'd probably think she was fine; and it's true that once Fauxlivia goes back to her own universe, she improves dramatically. Things to look forward to.

BTW I tried a normal write-up but really wanted to work in some of the little details. So going back to the 19th century style summary seemed like a fun way to do it, as well as an homage to the man of twists and turns who did all of S1 like that.
posted by Athanassiel at 2:33 AM on April 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


The scene where Fauxlivia does not actually go after shapeshifter/Peter examining security footage has always annoyed me. Then the ending with Fauxlivia giving Newton the suicide chip thing. COME ON PETER, FIGURE IT OUT. The entire series revolves around Peter being different/smarter/chosen but they fall back on the quite normal humanity of him falling for the devil vagina magics. It's super annoying...mostly because it leads to one of the best, funniest things Walter says in the entire series in a few eps.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 4:21 PM on April 6, 2015


I"m wondering how the shape shifters stay stable, since in the 2nd season when Charlie was exposed as a shape shifter he was having issues getting mercury?
posted by lucy.jakobs at 11:58 AM on April 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I forgotten how much I liked this episode. Newton's needling of Fauxlivia especially - I wonder if he was made that way, or just complex enough to develop it! And Walter's epiphanies this episode were great.

Cellos of Foreboding can get hackneyed pretty fast, but I am enjoying this soundtrack, composed by Michael Giacchino and Chris Tilton
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:37 PM on April 28, 2015


I"m wondering how the shape shifters stay stable, since in the 2nd season when Charlie was exposed as a shape shifter he was having issues getting mercury?

Maybe their changing device lets them maintain their level of mercury? "Charlie" lost his.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 7:36 AM on June 3, 2015


I forgotten how much I liked this episode. Newton's needling of Fauxlivia especially - I wonder if he was made that way, or just complex enough to develop it! And Walter's epiphanies this episode were great.
I've always kind of assumed that Newton-generation shapeshifters were essentially the same as the Season 4 next-generation models: cyborgs or machine-enhanced entities containing what at one stage had been an actual human being, who'd volunteered for the remodelling. So Newton's not AI; he's a former human being on a mission.
posted by Sonny Jim at 1:04 PM on January 15, 2017


I'm probably wrong, though. But that's my particular head canon interpretation, because I refuse to believe something as contrarian as Newton could be simply AI.
posted by Sonny Jim at 1:09 PM on January 15, 2017


OK, having rewatched all of Season 4 now, I am absolutely, completely wrong.
posted by Sonny Jim at 6:20 AM on February 23, 2017


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