Fringe

2008, TV Show

Fringe Episode: "Power Hungry"

Season 1, Episode 5
Episode Synopsis: Dangerous consequences of a man's peculiar ability to harness electricity draw the attention of Olivia, Peter and Dr. Bishop, whose unorthodox methods extend to including the use of homing pigeons to aid their investigation.
Original Air Date: Oct 14, 2008
Guest Cast Max Baker: Fischer Ebon Moss-Bachrach: Joseph Meegar
Full Episode
click to playclick to play
Season 1, Episode 5
Subscription | Netflix
Length: 49:18
Aired: 10/14/2008
Also available on iTunes, Amazon Prime and VUDU
play more info

Fringe Episode Recap: "Power Hungry" Season 1, Episode 5

A shocking character returns from Olivia's past and adds new layers of mystery in this week's episode, along with a "phenomenon of the week" story: a man who can harness the power of electricity accidentally causes mayhem, death and destruction everywhere he goes. Olivia, Peter and Walter try to figure out which one of Walter's secret experiments in the '70s could have caused this condition, and try to stop the man before he kills anyone else. In other news, Broyles brings Olivia a latte. Does this mean he's over himself now? Stay tuned.

Ah yes, the classic cold opening of a crazed and overbearing mother (Throw Mama from the Train, Psycho and X-Files episode "4-D" come to mind immediately) nagging her socially awkward and weakling son to get his sh-t together before he heads to his pathetically boring job (as a parcel delivery guy). The poor kid is having a rough day after all the nagging, and then his boss starts in on him. (But he has dreams! Desires! Feelings!) He flips open his phone to see a pic of a lady that makes him smile. His girlfriend? No way. He's the stalker type for sure. He heads off with a package to "I Can't Fight This Feeling Anymore" blasting through his '90s headphones – clearly to ask his lady love on a date. Unfortunately, he's just the parcel guy to her, and she makes a date with someone else right in front of him. Suddenly, her computer goes wonky, and parcel guy looks nervous and gets outta there fast. He enters an elevator — and holy crap! Was that just "The Observer?" coming out of the elevator? Please weigh in. Back to parcel guy – his lady love follows him into the elevator. Then he drops his phone and she sees her picture on it. Her stalker alarm just went off, but before she can mace him, the elevator surges with electricity and plummets to the ground floor, killing everyone but parcel guy (P.G.). He's confused and frightened, and as he gets up and exits the elevator, he starts setting off every cars' engines, lights and alarms as he runs down the garage alley. That's hot!

We join Olivia and Charlie having a chat about John Scott's shocking visit to Olivia's apartment at the end of the last episode. Olivia thinks she's seeing things and should take her self away from these fringe cases. Charlie tells her to give herself a break after everything she's been through, and that she's quite valuable to these investigations – especially since she exposed John as the traitor he was. Olivia definitely looks like she doesn't trust herself as much as she did since seeing visions of her dead boyfriend.

Back in the lab, Peter and Walter trade "you don't understand what I'm going through" moments until Olivia and Broyles enter. Peter says, "Ah, visiting hours! Everyone put on your best straight jackets." Ha! Peter does get some good zingers. Broyles explains the elevator incident and compares it to another catastrophic accident caused by a power surge of unknown origins – and that it may have to do with new weapon technology.

Inside the elevator, Walter discovers that the passengers were killed by electrocution before they ever hit the ground. (Insert cocked eyebrows.) In one of the cooler stunts of the show, Walter takes Olivia's necklace and hangs in the air – the electricity from the accident is still charging the air enough to make the necklace float. Cool. Walter asks to examine the residual energy of the victims' belongings and takes one body, to go.

Back at the lab, Walter extracts one of the elevator victim's heart for an experiment. He's babbling about the government asking him if it was possible for humans to be tracked via pigeons. I'm not joking. Apparently, all of us have our own unique electrical energy, but human electrical outputs are too weak for the pigeons to pick up on, so they had to strengthen the signals. I'm now picturing Walter using car jumper cables to juice up his test subjects. As if he's reading my mind, Walter uses smaller cables to reanimate the elevator dude's heart! Walter says this proves that someone has continued the research on human electromagnetic superpowers … and the research worked!

P.G. comes into work looking like seven kinds of sh-t. His boss gives him holy hell for being a crappy employee, and P.G. begs for his job because he has to take care of his mom. His boss is a real jerk and fires him anyway, and I can see what's coming a mile away. A machine comes to life and eats the boss' arm (karma's a beyotch, bossman).

Broyles brings Olivia a latte and some intel on a group of clinics – off the grid – that promise hair growth, weight loss, etc. They recruit people under these pretenses but then perform awful and illegal experiments on them instead. The man behind it all is wanted by the FBI, and is named Dr. Jacob Fisher. Broyles thinks that the man behind the elevator may be with the person who created him (meaning Fischer). Later, and alone, Olivia hears noises and investigates. It's John Scott again! This time he's much more than a hallucination, but is still not real. Methinks he's crossed over into her mind since the tank incident in the pilot. He's helpful in supplying her with info about Fischer.

Olivia realizes someone walked out of the elevator alive and Walter theorizes he may have been saved by floating on a cushion of an electromagnetic field. Peter contributes that the person responsible for this incident may not know what he is doing – that it was an accident.

Poor P.G. He goes home to mom after his sh-t ass day and tries to tell her about the experiment he participated in, but she won't give him a break. He accidentally gets so riled up that he kills her (though I'm not sure how upset he is to be rid of that headache). He bolts from the apartment only to find creepy Dr. Fischer waiting for him. They tranquilize P.G. to "adjust his medication."

When the team gets word that a man has had his arm cut off in a parcel factory, they look at the sign-in sheet for the elevator-accident building and realize that P.G. (Joseph Meegar) was in both locations. He's their man. Of course, they find his apartment empty and his mother dead from a pace maker malfunction.

Walter takes the tape from P.G.'s walkman and isolates his unique electromagnetic signature. Now, back to that crazy pigeons – Walter wants to use them to find P.G., and I can't believe this farce. But hey, go with it! Walter uses a type of Frankenstein machine to electrically charge some pigeons so that they can find P.G like little winged GPS.

John is back haunting Olivia in the hallway outside the lab. He kisses her (awkward if someone where to find her kissing the air, no?) and tell her that she knows deep down that he never betrayed her. Then Peter breaks the spell by saying the pigeon thing might just work.

They release the pigeons and Olivia and Peter follow in a car while Astrid and Walter track them with a GPS. The birds take them to the place where P.G. is being held (and mentally abused by creepy Fischer). The bad guys try to take P.G. away, but he zaps them with his superpowers. Fearing for his life, he runs when Olivia finds him but is stopped by Peter (with help from a trusty crowbar). They take P.G. to the hospital for tests.

Walter and Olivia have a chat about her not sleeping well. Walter guesses (out of the blue, like a psychic) that Olivia has been "seeing" John. He says they're not hallucinations (I win the prize for guessing the tank theory!), and that while in the tank, part of his consciousness transferred to her. She's not buying it, but Walter says she's still processing how to expel him from her mind. On her way home, Olivia sees John again, but this time he leads her to a secret storage facility.

The FBI comes in to catalogue John's secret stash; Broyles tells Olivia that John was investigating the pattern on his own. He also knew about Dr. Fischer, which now explains how his consciousness would be able to tell Olivia (through her visions) about the intel he discovered. Broyles gives Olivia some personal effects of John's… including a phat shiny engagement ring engraved with "Always." Ouch. That's gotta smart.

Questions to ponder:

- At which point in each episode will Walter say, "Back in the '70s we performed an experiment just like this!"

- When will Nina's mechanical arm be revealed as William Bell? That's right, you heard it here: Her mechanical arm is actually the mysterious and reclusive robot-man-genius.

- When will Jean (the cow) start talking?

- Will "The Observer" be making a "Where's Waldo?" appearance in each episode?

What did you think of this week's episode? What do you make of John Scott's appearances?

show less

A shocking character returns from Olivia's past and adds new layers of mystery in this week's episode, along with a "phenomenon of the week" story: a man who can harness the power of electricity accidentally causes mayhem, death and destruction everywhere he goes. Olivia, Peter and Walter try to figure out which one of Walter's secret experiments in the '70s could have caused this condition, and try to stop the man before he kills anyone else. In other news, Broyles brings Olivia a latte. Does this mean he's over himself now? Stay tuned.

read more

Are You Watching?

Loading ...
Premiered: September 09, 2008, on FOX
Rating: TV-14
User Rating: (5,420 ratings)
Add Your Rating: 1 stars2 stars3 stars4 stars5 stars
Premise: A drama with sci-fi elements following the FBI probe of mysterious deaths aboard an airplane that landed at Boston's Logan Airport. But the deaths aboard Flight 627 are only the beginning of the story. Executive producers include J.J. Abrams ('Lost') and his 'Mission: Impossible III' co-screenwriters, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman.

Cast

Shop

Fringe: Season 3 [Blu-ray]
Buy Fringe: Season 3 [Blu-ray] from Amazon.com
From Warner Home Video (Blu-ray)
Usually ships in 24 hours
Buy New: $25.79 (as of 04/24/14 10:32 PM EST - more info)
Fringe: Season 4 [Blu-ray]
Buy Fringe: Season 4 [Blu-ray] from Amazon.com
From Warner Home Video (Blu-ray)
Usually ships in 24 hours
Buy New: $27.34 (as of 04/24/14 10:32 PM EST - more info)

More Products

TV GUIDE Users' Most Popular