"Bound" (1.11)

Before I begin, I would like to advise against reading any further if you have not seen Fringe would like to see it, since this entry does contain spoilers. Well, something that I really like about this episode is that it is sort of like a part two to “Safe,” since it picks up right where “Safe” leaves off. It's a pretty decent episode, and I ultimately give it eight 8-balls. My only real complaint, however, is that this episode marked a return from a lengthy hiatus, and my anticipation, as I'm sure everyone else's was, was very intense, and within the first ten minutes or so of the episode, Olivia frees herself from her captors. I was hoping that her abduction was going to be a major season one plot, but we get almost nothing except Loeb telling her at the end of this episode that they were trying to save her and then Jones telling her in “Ability” (1.14) that they were trying to figure out whether or not she had been given Cortexiphan as a child. It was a little anti-climatic for me, and I know that I'm not the only one who feels that way, since I recall Darrell of the Fringe Podcast saying pretty much the same during the episode of the podcast that covers “Bound.” The only other downer that this episode has to offer is the introduction of Harris's character. He is, of course, mentioned in the pilot episode, but this is the first episode in which we actually meet him, and of course, he really turns out to be everyone's favorite character. Actually, we all hated him and loved seeing him burn to death in “The Road Not Taken" (1.19).

Anyway, I wonder what's up with the “old man” mask that Loeb wears. I mean, I obviously understand the purpose of him wearing a mask; it's to protect his identity, but why that mask? Does it signify something in particular? Am I missing something? Loeb's henchman, or whoever he is, is incredibly stupid. When you're holding someone against his or her will and have reason for them to be held, you don't release him or her from his or her restraints. Olivia asks if she can have some water, which is fine, but then asks if she can be released from her restraints so that she can sit up and drink, and I can't believe that he falls for that; that's just plain stupid. She, of course, smashes the glass over his head and then takes him down in a rather epic fashion (a fashion that is very reminiscent of Alias), and it serves the idiot right. Olivia then takes the cylinder and hides it, which is incredibly smart. It shows us that she is very good at thinking on her feet, even in a heightened state of emotion. It's good that she does, too, because if she hadn't have hidden the cylinder, Harris's men undoubtedly would have confiscated it, and Harris most likely would have denied its existence. The plot would not have gone in that direction, though, simply because that would have clued us in very early, too early, that Harris might have been a mole, which, of course, he was.

Am I the only one, by the way, who finds it incredibly creepy that when Olivia wakes up in the hospital, Harris is seen sitting there in front of her bed watching her? What a creeper, and speaking of that scene, I find it very annoying how that scene shows us flashes of Peter and Walter as Harris makes mention of them, as if we don't know who they are. It's quite obviously expository information for those new to the show, especially since, as I said, “Bound” was the first new episode that aired after a lengthy hiatus, but I, someone who had been watching the show since the pilot episode, was and am very annoyed. Anyway, Olivia does not seem at all happy that Rachel is in town, and I wonder why that is. When she actually meets up with Rachel and Ella, she seems very happy to meet them, hugging them and telling Rachel that the two of them are more than welcome to stay with her. However, it is very clear that when Charlie first tells Olivia that a woman named Rachel is there to see her, Olivia does not appear to be pleased, and after she speaks with Rachel and Ella, she gets into the elevator, and she doesn't seem to very pleased at this point, either. I can't figure out why, though, she would be upset that her sister is here to see her.

Well, this episode's science is rather disgusting, to say the least. Immunologists are killed by very large slugs that grow rapidly inside of them and then crawl through their mouths. As Peter says, it's “disgusting.” It is very similar, I suppose, to episode 2.09, “Snakehead,” and that is an incredibly disgusting episode, too. For the first and, so far, only time in Fringe's history, it is an entire sixteen minutes (and then some) before we see the intro, which is odd. Olivia escapes, she shows Peter and Walter where she hid the cylinder, and Kinberg, the first victim, is killed before we see the intro. Anyway, there is a very interesting line in this episode. Peter asks Walter why he just doesn't kill the super-slug (which, as we find out later in the episode, is a super-sized cold virus), and Walter says, “You can always kill it, son. You can't always bring it back.” Astrid then says to Walter that “you probably could.” This is a great line, because it foreshadows what we learn in the season one finale, that Peter died, and Walter consequently brought him back (which we now know was from the Other Side). Olivia demonstrates some of her typical Oliviaisms, such as getting right to the point when speaking to Tara Coleman, asking her, “How long were you seeing him?” She also, which I love, asks Broyles if she can enter his office after she has already entered, which Broyles notes, saying, “I hate that, knocking and asking while you're coming in.” That's Olivia for you.

It's not too long before ZFT, via its super-sized cold virus, claims its second victim, another immunologist by the name of Russell Simon. Now, I'm thinking that when Harris found out that Olivia was planning to put Simon in protective custody, he had to have signaled Loeb to give Simon the “powder” in a glass of water after “agreeing”to “keep him safe.” Obviously, when this episode first aired, we weren't supposed to have considered that, but now that it has been almost a year since “The Road Not Taken” (1.19) has aired, we are all obviously well-aware that Harris was a filthy mole. Olivia, of course, becomes even more driven after the second victim, and there is yet another great Oliver scene in this episode. Peter seems very concerned as to why Olivia was being held, and Olivia says, “Who cares about me?” She is not concerned as to why she was abducted; she just wants to stop the killings, but Peter says, “I care about you.” That is so adorable. I also love, though, how Charlie calls her Livvy; that is so adorable, too, but not in the same way. Olivia and Charlie were like best friends. I don't think that there was ever anything between the two of them, and I think that showing us in episode 1.16, “Unleashed,” that he had a wife was intended to tell us that. They trusted each other, and Olivia turned to Charlie when she needed help, which healways provided. It's really sad that he is gone, but he's only gone in this reality, and I have reason to believe that by the season two finale, we will see Charlie again.

Returning to Rachel, though, after she tells Olivia about Greg leaving her and Ella, Olivia comforts her and tells her that they can stay with her for as long as they want and then detects something. She detects something and asks Rachel, “Is there something else, something you're not telling me?” Rachel says that there isn't anything else, but come on, Olivia detected something, and if Olivia detects that something is wrong, then something is wrong. Is this scene meant to hint that Rachel is a traitor, that there is another reason why she is there besides Greg leaving her? I definitely think so, and I think that it has to do with Ella being given Cortexi-Fan. It's possible that Ella is even a clone, as we have seen in episodes 1.02, “The Same Old Story,” and 2.07, “Of Human Action.” It is very likely, I think, that Rachel's reason for suddenly showing up in Olivia's life, besides her situation with Greg, of course, has to do with Olivia's stepfather, a story that, as has been promised, will eventually be told. I am really hoping so, because that will make one intense story, which is not to suggest that the story is not already intense as it is. A family tie, though, between Olivia and the enemy would elevate the story to an evenhigher level, and, as I said, it's something that has been promised, so I am psyched for that.

During the scene in which Olivia and Samantha Loeb are talking in the Loebs' kitchen, I love it, because they are obviously playing around each other. Olivia is aware that Samantha is possibly a traitor, and Samantha is aware that Olivia is aware, but they still continue the show, and it's almost comical. For example, Olivia tells Samantha that she is in the area, because she is working on a case, and Samantha asks her what the case is. Before answering, Olivia looks deep into Samantha's eyes, looking for something, anything, and then says, “Suspicion of a double agent.” At this point, their tea is ready, and Samantha stands up. I love the symbolism here, because the tea is boiling, just like Samantha is inside, red hot with annoyance and fury. One thing of which I can't seem to figure out, though, is why Loeb tells Samantha to kill Olivia if Olivia was so important. Is this a plot hole, or did he expect Olivia to prevail? Was the grief displayed in the interrogation room fake? If so, then he is a top-notch player; I'll give him that. I love how Samantha calls for Olivia after being instructed to kill her by saying her name in a manner that sounds as if she is playing “Hide and Seek” with her, and Olivia suddenly shows up behind Samantha and says Samantha's name in the same manner; it's just so funny to hear it out of Olivia, obviously gloating inside that she has prevailed, and, as usual, she does, but, also as usual, she seems to have a much more difficult time taking down a woman than she does a man. The man whose head she smashed a glass on near the beginning of the episode, for example, seemed to have been a piece of cake, yet she struggles for quite some time with Samantha before finally shooting her in the head.

When Olivia finally does apprehend Loeb, I find it awesome how she just can't help herself; Loeb smiles, and she pistol-whips him. What's behind his smile, though, I wonder? Surely, he must have been thinking that Samantha was dead since Olivia is alive, but that's why I say that his display of grief in the interrogation room may be an act. It may be that he smiles at Olivia with a similar attitude as Jones's attitude when Olivia successfully turns the box of lights off in episode 1.14, “Ability.” “That's my girl,” Jones said. However, when he seems to lose control in the interrogation room, he says to Olivia, “Do you not understand the rules, what we're up against, who the two sides are? Tell me at least you know that.” Similar to how Nina says in the previous episode, “Safe,” that “we are in a race against highly motivated individuals,” I wonder who he is talking about. I am assuming that he is referring to the alternate reality, but even so, why did he need to kill those two immunologists? Was it so that they wouldn't interfere with the sealant in “Ability” (1.14)? Even if that's true, what was the sealant for? Hopefully, we eventually have answers to these questions. Walter, anyway, continues to try to get Olivia and Peter to start dating, this time by consistently telling Olivia that Peter was really worried about her while she was gone, which clearly embarrasses Peter. The last scene of this episode, by the way, is so adorable, a scene in which we see Olivia and Ella curled up together, fast asleep. It really warms my heart. Anyway, stay on the fringe.

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