Synopsis: A happy wedding ends disastrously when a large portion of the gathered civilians wind up dead. As the Fringe team investigates the mass murder, it becomes clear to Walter Bishop (John Noble) that the attack was merely a testing ground for a lethal experiment — an experiment that leads back to Walter’s own father, a Nazi scientist that secretly worked for the allied forces, resulting in the Bishop patriarch’s own resolve in preventing further catastrophe.
The Final Solution Once again, another episode that is heavily set in the mystery-of-the-week formula as opposed to the alternate reality story, but there is clearly a story significance here. First and foremost, however, the risks involved in this episode — a weaponized airborne disease that targets specific sets of DNA — is terrifying, especially when coming from an eerie Nazi sympathizer. “Fringe” fans that dig standalone episodes must have enjoyed this latest outing.
The Bishop’s Move: On a mythological level, “The Bishop Revival” certainly held weight. Slowly but surely, the writers are peeling back layers on the Bishop family line, revealing that there is a terrible history of experimentation that predates Walter himself. The exact relationship between Walter and the killer isn’t fully known — he could have been Walter’s father, a colleague of his father’s, a colleague of Walter’s, an alternate world scientist, or someone else entirely — but the significance of the quirky Bishop can’t be ignored in the ongoing events of “Fringe.”
Death Becomes Walter: Let’s not forget that Walter killed somebody tonight. It wasn’t quite the same as him shooting a man in the back, but Walter’s scientific ingenuity cost the killer his life. It’s long been suggested that Walter wasn’t a great man before his cognitive impairments, but his ruthlessness towards the killer proved just how far he’s willing to go when it comes to protecting his family’s name.
Light on the Olives: As the Bishop story ramps up, it feels like the writers are scaling back on Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv). She’s supposed to be the leader of this ensemble cast, but for three episodes in a row now, she’s taken a backseat to Peter (Joshua Jackson) and Walter Bishop. Luckily, next week’s show should focus heavily on Olivia, but I would still like to see her take an active role in “Fringe’s” events on a more regular basis. That’s not a knock against Walter and Peter — I just think there needs to be more balance between the three leads.
Conclusions: Satisfying both the mystery-of-the-week and the mythological crowds, “The Bishop Revival” was a terrific installment. If next week’s episode can expand the mythology even further, “Fringe” fans are in for an intense winter finale.
Next Case: The two universes begin to collide, causing people, objects and more to merge with one another. Ultimately, it all comes down to one person to save them all — Olivia Dunham.
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