Recap / Fringe S02 E14 "The Bishop Revival"
Season 2, Episode 14
The Bishop Revival
A German scientist, Alfred Hoffman, develops a virus capable of only targeting and killing people with specific genetic traits. When the Fringe team investigates, Walter realises that the killer is using scientific concepts and formulas developed by his own father, Dr. Robert Bischoff, a German scientist who passed information to the Allies during WWII before immigrating to America. The Fringe team find the scientist's lab just as he's left to plant virus bombs at a conference for world tolerance: they manage to find the bombs but can't locate the scientist. Walter, driven to tranquil fury
by the scientist's use of his father's theories, creates a new strain on the virus that only targets the scientist himself and releases it at the conference, killing him. As he dies, the scientist points to Walter and calls him a traitor. At the end of the episode, one of Walter's old photos of his father reveals that the scientist was a Nazi who has somehow lived to be over 100 years old without ageing.
Tropes found in this episode:
- The Ageless: The German scientist.
- All Germans Are Nazis
- Artistic License – Chemistry:
- Creating the seahorse signature is quite implausible with today's technology, and was certainly impossible in 1943.
- The idea is that the German scientist spent the last 70 years or so developing the toxin, and made it as his twisted fuck you to Walter's dad. Even without that, considering Massive Dynamic, Walter and ZFT, making a chemical weapon with a carbon structure that looks like a seahorse is the least improbable thing.
- Artistic License – History
- DNA was actually discovered Swiss physician Friedrich Miescher in 1869, well before Nazi Germany.
- The theory of DNA containing a cell's genetic information, however, was first proposed by Oswald Avery in 1944 and was generally accepted only after Francis' and Crick's discovery of the now-famous double-helix structure (with its implications for DNA's duplication mechanism) in 1953. So a Nazi scientist doing DNA-based genetics would indeed have been ahead of his time.
- Peter thought his grandfather immigrated in 1933, which he described as "long before the Nazis ever took power", but in actuality the rule of the Third Reich and Adolf Hitler in Nazi Germany started in 1933.
- "Long before" could simply mean months before.
- Artistic License – Medicine:
- Someone poisoned by cyanide actually has cherry red blood, not blue blood.
- Bitter Almonds: Averted, although I am uncertain what the cinnamon scent was meant to indicate.
- Carrying a Cake: Averted, the three layer wedding cake being carried in the opening scene is never shown again.
- Cool Old Lady: Eva Staller. From what little we saw of her, she was nice and cool for someone who survived the holocaust. And she was about to bust the German scientist right before she choked to death (In Real Life, one woman who did recognize Josef Mengele in a crowd after WWII fainted, so it's a testament to how coolthis old lady is).
- Drives Like Crazy: Walter
- Karmic Death: Hoffman gets killed by his own chemical weapon by Walter, the son of the guy who worked against him, after he tried using the chemical weapon on Walter himself.
- LEGO Genetics: Most of the features described by Walter, like height and weight, are a polygenic trait that also can be strongly influenced by environmental factors.
- But that doesn't mean the chemical weapon couldn't be used to target people with a genetic predisposition to being thin or fat.
- Master Race
- Nerdy Inhaler
- Politically Incorrect Villain: Hoffman who created a chemical weapon that targets people according to pre-programmed genetic traits, and he tests at the wedding of one of his Jewish victims. His next plan was to unleash it on a human rights conference, where he and anyone else who was blonde and blue eyed would be the only ones left standing. Needless to say, it's satisfying when Walter kills him with his own weapon.
- Sins of Our Fathers
- Stupid Jetpack Hitler
- True Art Is Incomprehensible: In Universe the basement artist who thinks making cut-and-paste artwork of the Nazis is a way of depicting them negatively. And if that isn't bad enough, he used Peter's grandfather's science books to do a Hitler caricature.
Eric Franko: I'm not a Nazi. I'm an artist. It's about the banality of evil, uh, like the Nuremberg trials showing history's tyrants as these regular schmucks. (...) Sadly, the, uh, contemporary art scene has yet to, um — fully recognize my particular contributions.