Fringe 1.5: "Power Hungry"

Between the election season and Major League Baseball playoffs, it's a surprise that FOX bothered to keep "Fringe" on the air at all. Tossing even a two-week hiatus at a new show this early in a post-strike season is a calculated risk at best. Thankfully, the series was already given a full first season, so the impact should be minimized.

This was probably the most conventional episode of the series to date, which should serve to show the divisions within the emerging fandom. Those looking for a relatively simple "monster of the week" series should be happy. Those more intrigued with the overall mythology will have to live with Agent Dunham's subplot and the vague connections to Dr. Bishop's past work.

As someone who generally enjoys serialized storytelling over episodic fare, I found myself less than impressed with this episode. But I think that also has something to do with the nature of the "monster". I just didn't find Electricity Boy to be that interesting. I think the electrified homing pigeons caught my attention more.

The underlying scheme behind Electricity Boy's creation was a bit more revealing. Was this some random modern expression of something Bishop once heard of, or was this connected to those thought to be behind The Pattern? Putting out a bogus ad in the paper to draw in the disaffected sounds very plausible, and one wonders how often that tactic is used in the real world.

Far more interesting than all of that was the discovery that Agent John Scott was studying The Pattern on his own. If he wasn't working for Broyles, then who was he working for? All the evidence points to Massive Dynamic, but that̢۪s still just a circumstantial assumption. There's no telling how many organizations are out there trying to exploit or understand The Pattern.

Having Agent Scott existing in some kind of avatar form in Agent Dunham's mind is a twist, reminding me of something very similar from the science fiction classic "Farscape". Dunham was having a hard enough time dealing with the loss of her lover and the change in her circumstance without trying to control an embedded personality in her brain. It's one clever way to keep a cast member around, though!


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