Gone for about a month Fringe returns to FOX's Friday night line up with some creepy Ocean's 13 inspired seduction. No Clooney or Pitt, but Fringe's version of the fictional 'gilroy' from the 2007 crime caper. Still don't get that reference? I'll explain:
The latest Fringe case involves a killer who kidnaps the male half of a couple in a loving relationship and drains his body dry for the man's pheromones. After the victim's signature pheromones have been extracted the killer goes after the female half of the happy couple but does so by wearing the victim's scent. When the now widowed woman is face-to-face with her man's killer she is oddly, yet only momentarily, physically attracted to the murder because of the pheromone cologne (or gilroy in the Soderbergh's Ocean universe). Meanwhile, just before Peter is about to skip town Walter puts him on a trail that leads him to the Observer from last episode.
The love sick case of the week had some interesting moments, but nothing outstanding. The pheromone/love potion concept isn't a new one in the television landscape. Usually this kind of an idea is used in sitcoms for some unconventional laughs. Smallville is the only drama other than Fringe that I can remember where this concept has gone a little darker by having people killed off also. Fringe puts their cool science spin on the idea but it is so blatantly obvious that the reason this case pops up now is to tie into the episode's theme of love.
Elsewhere in the episode there is still a lot of explaining left to do when it comes to Peter. Apparently there is no time for him to get back to because he is already home. With Peter having been removed from both time and the different universes caused ripple effects that don't look to be reversible. After Peter finds the beacon (which was very cool I might add) it seems like September got some kind of reset and is back to whatever kind of normal he was before. The only question is now that September is free from being locked away will he rejoin the other observers or continue to go rouge and help out Olivia, Peter and the gang?
Fringe actually had some weak moments when it came to executing all the love and affection longing between Olivia and Peter. I can't quite put my finger on it if it was the direction, the acting, or the episode's writing. I'm leaning a little towards its writing because the most of the material on the subject of love are too far apart even though the episode's outline tries to overlap the different stories. Far apart since Peter and Olivia only see each other at the end of the episode and overlapping because Olivia keeps bring it up as if everyone somehow needed to be reminded. What saves this episode on love from it being the eye rolling sappy variety is their musical score. Fringe's score has the ability to make audiences get all sentimental at just the right moments. If the actors are the best thing about this series then the score is a damn close second. The series may not have composer Michael Giacchino (Lost, The Incredibles, Star Trek) on as their full time music man, since he is very busy with various film scores, but other fellow composer Chris Tilton is an almost spot on alternate.
Andrew Burns loves film and comics, and can be found writing about when those worlds converge. You can follow him on Twitter at @myAndrewBurns.