Fringe 1.05 "Power Hungry"
The investigation begins after 8 people are found dead in an elevator, in the Herndon Building. Olivia, Walter and Peter show up at the scene of the crime, each with their own points to bring up. Peter thinks that the cord holding the elevator must have snapped, but his father explains how it is possible, with an extremely powerful electrical current to override the grid controlling the elevator, to make it shoot down the shaft. Walter takes note of the wounds on the victims bodies. Each of them were electrocuted, and died before the elevator hit the bottom of the shaft. To show that a powerful electrical surge has passed through the elevator, Walter takes out a key, which levitates in the air. Electro has struck again! Well, no it is not Electro, it is Joseph Migar, employee of Bi-Coastal Parcel.
A while back, Migar responded to an ad he saw on late night TV so he could be hypnotized, and then therefore become more self confident. Unfortunately, the ad was posted by mad scientist, Dr. Fisher, who, according to Broyles, might be connected to “The Pattern”. Just to show how evil Dr. Fisher is, Broyles mentions that he once used pharmaceuticals to keep an innocent man awake for a year, straight, with his eyes held open, to view extremely horrific images.
Migar’s life takes a downward spiral over the course of the episode. His boss fires him. In a scene very reminiscent of “The Machinist” with Christian Bale, Migar causes his ex-boss to get his arm stuck in a machine, shredding it up.
When he gets home, he seeks out his Mother for help. She isn’t much help, and out of frustration, he accidentally causes her to have a heart attack. Migar attempts to run away, but doesn’t get very far. Dr. Fisher and one of his thugs shows up at Migar’s apartment complex and kidnaps him. With the help of some “Fringey Science”, Olivia an co. are able to track down Migar’s unique electrical signature. She arrests Dr. Fisher, and Migar is sent to the hospital, where he can receive some much needed help.
THE FRINGEY SCIENCE:
How do you track a man who is super electrically charged? Use a cassette tape of R.E.O. SPEEDWAGON! According to Walter, everyone has their own personal magnetic fingerprint. On certain objects, this fingerprint can be left behind, for example the tape within a cassette. When dealing with a man whose bio-electric pulse has been altered, this fingerprint will be easier to detect. For all of us non-scientific types, Peter compares the magnetic fingerprint on the tape to an exposure left on film. Walter, finds Migar’s cassette portable cassette player amongst the evidence left behind in the elevator. He then uses a device to detect the magnetic fingerprint.
The next step - send an electric charge through a bunch of carrier pigeons and have them seek out Migar’s pulse. After the pigeons are charged (in a sequence that is very reminiscent of the scene where Frankenstein’s monster is brought to life) a GPS tracker is attached to each of them. The team track the pigeons to where Migar is being experimented on.
THE MYTHOS: Like many other shows (“Dexter” and “Battlestar Galactica” come to mind) “Fringe” will most likely have a main character that interacts with another character in their mind. In this case, Olivia is seeing her former partner and lover, John Scott in her mind. Conveniently, Scott seems to be giving clues, guiding Olivia with her investigations. In one waking dream, Scott tells Olivia that he will love her always, and that he is going to prove it to her. After the Migar case is closed, Olivia spots Scott walking along a deserted street. She gets out of her car, and follows him to a storage facility, where Scott left behind a massive amount of paperwork.
Broyles goes over what his men found in the storage facility. It turns out Scott knew about the existence of “The Pattern”, and was also taking notes on mad scientist Dr. Fisher. Broyles gives Olivia a metal box with some of Scott’s personal items. Inside is an engagement ring. Inscribed on the inside of it is the word ALWAYS.
MY THOUGHTS: The main plot of the show basically dealt with tracking down Migar. That in itself wasn’t very interesting. This could be because there wasn’t enough of the Migar character shown for you to be interested in what happens to him. He only used his power twice on innocent people, and in both cases, it wasn’t that terrifying. He was neither a real threat or relatable victim. He also looked a lot like a young Judge Reinhold with a beard.
Walter is as entertaining as he normally is. John Noble is just such a wonderful actor, that it doesn’t seem incredibly retarded when he suggests sending an electrical pulse through a bunch of carrier pigeons. We don’t really see that much of Peter this episode, which really allows Olivia to steal the show. Even though, like I said before, the idea of a part of John Scott being in Olivia’s mind is something we have seen way too many times in television shows these days, it gives Olivia an ace up her sleeve. Now, with Scott in her mind, giving her clues, she can pull a few ideas out of left field, being one step ahead of everyone, like Walter.