Recap: Fringe S01 E01 "Pilot"
Season 1, Episode 1:
- "It's not an exact science."
Tropes present in this episode include:
- Author Appeal: Opening a TV series with a plane disaster? Nice to see you again, Mr. Abrams.
- Beard of Sorrow: Walter. Though considering he was in an asylum and somewhat mentally disturbed, it wouldn't be a good idea to give him a razor.
- Body Horror: The teaser.
- Don't forget the flesh-melting toxin, and its effect shown at the beginning and through the episode.
- The Call Knows Where You Live: Olivia doesn't want to be part of the Fringe division, especially after she saved John. Sadly, John isn't who she thinks he is, and his death leaves her with a myriad of questions she needs to answer.
- Cryptic Background Reference: Whatever happened to the prior Fringe team.
- Deader Than Dead: Why corpses more than six hours old can't be questioned through Psychic Link.
- Drugs Are Good: The series sets the tone right out of the gate: LSD is integral to solving the case and saving the day and Walter cooks up his own prescription psychotropics to replace what he was on in the mental institution.
- Epunymous Title: Pilot because it's the pilot, and involves an airplane. Coincidence? Future titles would suggest otherwise.
- Foreshadowing: One quote given by Walter when he re-enters his old lab: "So much has happened here. And so much is yet to". Not only it references to the Fringe Division's work, but also to the fact he knows or knew more than he let on.
- Walter's first line, "I knew someone would come, eventually," also has a disturbing amount of foreshadowing. He knew someone would need to talk to him because eventually the universe would start breaking down.
- Genre Savvy: After talking to Walter, Peter realizes some heavy stuff is about to happen and tells Olivia that his first instinct is taking the first plane out of Boston ASAP. However, he also feels it's important to stay and let Walter help.
- Interrogating the Dead
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Peter induces Steig to talk by smashing his hand with his coffee cup.
- Psychic Link: Of the Weird Science variety.
- Skepticism Failure: Mind control? Teleportation? Astral projection? All fine. But re-animation is where Peter Bishop draws the line. Technically, he was skeptic the moment Olivia started saying it, he just repeated what she said last to exemplify how ludicrous it all sounds.
- The Sociopath: Richard Steig. The series start with him killing his own twin brother and everyone aboard the plane for an experiment. And aside from Peter hammering his hand with a cup, he is in Dissonant Serenity always.
- Vorpal Pillow: How John kills Steig, who is handcuffed to the bed and was sleeping before getting surprised.
- Weird Science: Focuses much more on the concept than the other dark sci-fi show Fox used to run on prime time.
- Wham Line: "We would be happy to treat you as family as well!". John first says it while on the phone when he and Olivia go to the plane incident, but later we learn he was threatening Steig.