Friday, November 19, 2010

Fringe “The Abducted” Recap & Review

All photos from Fox

Despite being set in the alternate universe, Fringe returned to its roots with a tale from the weird. While there was an actual Fringe case for the team to work, Olivia’s (Anna Torv) need to get back home was still a big part of this very interesting story. The episode also gives viewers a look into the life of Colonel Broyles, a person who seems cold on the outside but we find is a normal wife and father.

The alternate Fringe team is called in to handle a kidnapping. Kidnappings aren’t something that our usual Fringe team handles, but in the alternate universe, they are given very high priority. The Secretary – AKA “Walternate” (John Noble) – whose own son Peter (Joshua Jackson) was abducted by “our” Walter – doesn’t seem to want any parent to suffer as he did when his own son was stolen. In fact, the Peter Bishop Act of 1991 says every kidnapping of a child is treated as a possible Fringe event.

While Olivia is working the case, she’s also trying to get back home. She knows that her usefulness to Walternate is over and she has to get back before they eliminate her. She enlists the help of Henry the cab driver (Andre Royo) and wants his help to get a boat so she can get back to Liberty Island and the tank which is used to help her cross over to the other side.

The alternate Fringe team – Olivia, Lincoln (Seth Gabel ) and Charlie (Kirk Acevedo) realize that child of the current kidnapping case was taken by a serial kidnapper known as The Candy Man (he sweats sugar). This is not good news to Colonel Broyles (Lance Reddick), whose own son was taken by The Candy Man before the (faux) Olivia had joined the Fringe team. When his son was found, like the other children, the life was drained out of them, many had deterioration of organ tissue, their immune systems were depleted, and some children came back with cancer. Olivia realizes that based on what some of the children reported, there seems to have been two men involved in the kidnappings. Despite being told not to do so, Olivia approaches Broyles and wants to talk to his son Chris (Curtis Harris). Broyles is furious with her. But later, he changes his mind when his wife reassures him that their son can handle it.

It’s Chris’ recollection of a prayer–like incantation from the kidnapper that helps Olivia get the clues which leads the team to a church and one of the church members, and she rescues the kidnap victim. She does make one mistake – she refers to the FBI during her rescue and the boy hears it. They find that The Candy Man was stealing hormones from the children and using them to make a serum to help members of the church heal their own illnesses. Olivia then realizes that the church leader is also involved, and lucky for Broyles and his family, she gets the information to Broyles in time. He is able to shoot and kill the reverenced who has entered Broyles' home and has his hands on Chris, ready to administer chloroform to knock him out.

Later at the hospital, they hope the serum will help the kidnapped children recover. When Olivia speaks to the recent kidnap victim, he asks her what is the FBI. It seems Olivia didn’t realize she had even said "FBI" when she came to save him, but she quickly covers. But Broyles has heard their conversation and when he tells her the FBI ceased to exist over 10 years ago, he asks her "You know who you are, don't you?" She asks him what happens now. But Broyles, maybe grateful for what she’s done to help his own child, seems to decide that nothing will happen, because he’s going home.

Henry, meanwhile, is still waiting with the boat, and he takes Olivia over so she can make the swim to Liberty Island. She makes her way in – setting off a silent security alert – but gets into the tank and makes it to the other side. She’s back in the Liberty Island gift shop and a cleaning woman spots her. But, as the scene seems to shift and blur, she knows she’s getting pulled back.. She tells the cleaning woman she has something important to tell her that's going to sound insane – and then we see she’s back in the tank, being yanked out by an incensed Walternate. As she screams that she doesn’t belong there, they sedate her.

Back on “our” side, Peter and alternate Olivia are cuddling in bed watching the movie “Casablanca” and she has the details about the film wrong. When they get ready to go to sleep, Peter gets a call. It’s the cleaning woman, and she said she’s calling from New York. She saw a woman who said her name was Olivia disappear in front of her eyes, and that Olivia had a message for Peter - that she’s trapped in the other universe. Peter gets that look on his face that suddenly some things makes sense.

There’s already been a lot of press about what happens in the next episode (don’t read any further if you don’t want to know) that Colonel Broyles will help Olivia get back and the alternate Olivia also returns where she belongs. “The Abducted” was a great set up to the swap, since Broyles seems to have gained respect, and some sympathy, for our Olivia because of her work in the kidnapping case. A sneak peak and the Fox promo for that episode is below. Will this mean that they are closing the door for good on the alternate universe? I doubt it. I wonder if part of the alternate Olivia’s plan was to get pregnant by Peter, and if somehow that child would have the ability to operate the yet to be built “doomsday” machine? That’s speculation on my part, but it would be a logical step in the plan. It seems nothing that the alternate Olivia has done has been without a plan or without guidance. Either way, the next episode looks exciting!

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