Fringe

2008, TV Show

Fringe Episode: "The Equation"

Season 1, Episode 8
Episode Synopsis: The circumstances surrounding a music prodigy's kidnapping cause Dr. Bishop to be reminded of a fellow inmate at St. Claire's, but Olivia's suggestion that he return to the hospital draws criticism from Peter.
Original Air Date: Nov 18, 2008
Guest Cast Bill Sadler: Dr. Sumner Charlie Tahan: Ben Stockton Randall Duk Kim: Dashiell Briggs Adam Grupper: Andrew Stockton
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Season 1, Episode 8
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Length: 49:01
Aired: 11/18/2008
Also available on iTunes, Amazon Prime and VUDU
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Fringe Episode Recap: "The Equation" Season 1, Episode 8

Walter goes home again, or at least to St. Claire's asylum, this week to help solve a kidnapping case. The boy who was taken, as well as several others in the Fringe files, was a prodigy, and the people responsible for the kidnapping him used red and green flashing lights to distract and hypnotize their victims. Walter doesn't remember the details, but he's heard of this phenomena before. He, along with Peter and Olivia, must find those behind the kidnapping before the boy is driven mad, or killed. In other news, Olivia eats a doughnut (she is human!), Walter calls Astrid "lady" and drops his food obsession this week.

We open with a father, Jeremy, driving his child, Ben, in a nasty rainstorm. Ben is some sort of musical prodigy who asks his dad to turn the wiper blades down because they are messing up his rhythm as he writes notes on sheet music. His dad declines the request but does stop to help a stranded motorist. The redhead, Joanne, plays a good damsel in distress, but something isn't quite right. Jeremy looks under the hood and sees red and green lights flashing back and forth. The next thing we know a police officer is asking how he can help — and Joanne and Ben are no where in sight.

Broyles briefs the gang on Ben's disappearance and the flashing red and green lights, and says that three other people have gone missing under the same circumstances. Those "expert" minds (in math or science) were all found alive, but driven mad by their experiences. Walter pipes up about red and green Christmas lights, but doesn't know how they are connected.

Olivia speaks to Jeremy and his sister, they find out that his wife Abby and Ben were hit by a car nine months ago. Abby was killed and Ben suffered traumatic brain injury. When he woke up, he was a musical prodigy. But, he plays the same tune over and over again and can't figure out how it finishes.

We then see where Ben is being held — which looks like a creepy horror movie basement — Joanne enters and tells him that if he helps them with what they need, he can see his mother again. That's just freakin' cruel.

Back at the lab, Walter sings Xmas carols in order to jog his memory about the flashing lights. He remembers that he was hired, not by the government, but by an advertising agency to work a little mind control with TV viewers using the red and green lights. Of course it didn't work, because they made people nauseous. But, perhaps someone (duh, duh, duh) is continuing that work today! Walter makes Peter stare at the green lights, and it seems as though they have no effect. Until, Astrid walks by (in the best line of the night) and says, "Hey Chachi," off seeing that he's cut the sleeves off his long-sleeved t-shirt. Peter is shocked that he has no memory of cutting off his sleeves.

Charlie tells Olivia that their suspect, Joanne, was supposedly killed in a car accident 10 years ago, but her body was never found. With no real news on the suspect, Olivia is happy to hear that Walter remembers the man who told him about the lights. His name is Dashiell Kim (Dash for short, OK?) and he was a friend of Walter's ...at the asylum. Broyles says speaking to him about the lights and his own abduction experience may not be so easy since he's considered a 1027: insane with knowledge of state secrets. Or as I like to call it, "the grand slam with a side of crazy special."

Joanne brings Ben to a room to show him sheet music hanging on the wall. She says, "bet you never saw them in that order before," and he hasn't. As he studies the pages, his mother walks in and calls him "Bean," which is his nickname. He's confused but happy to have her back. Later, she tells him in order for her to stick around, he has to figure out the end of the song. No pressure!

So Dash was a naughty boy before he was locked up, and no doubt it was because of these damn lights. (Note to self: buy white Xmas lights this year). He killed his wife brutally, and in the crime scene photos, there are equations written all over the walls. Peter, being the MIT drop-out genius that he is, finds a pattern in the equations immediately. In a instant, he connects the equations, or numbers, to rhythm and music (since music is inherently mathematical ...uh, yeah, totally ...I knew that). He plays the melody, and what do you know, it matches the melody that Ben was playing!

Olivia travels to St. Claire's and speaks to Dr. Sumner about questioning Dash. He thinks it's a bad idea, but not as bad as letting Walter leave the hospital. Huh? Where did that come from mysterious Dr. Sumner? Oh, you are so up to no good! But, he decides that he'll let Dash talk to Walter, and no one else.

Of course, Peter says "hells to the no" (not those exact words, but that would have been awesome) about that idea. However, Walter totally nuts up and says he'll go. On the way there, Walter looks like he may be sick, but he becomes very brave as he sees his old friend. Walter asks Dash about the Christmas lights and where his abductor took him, but Dash shuts down very quickly and says that Walter must have the wrong person. Talk about mind control — the guy talks like a robot after Walter mentions the lights. Walter tries draw the equations on the table with a crayon, but Dash freaks out, which then makes all the other patients freak out. Not good ...and here comes a big old sedation needle for Walter.

Peter and Olivia are furious and demand that Walter be released. But, Dr. Sumner says he will keep him locked up until they get a court order to remove him. This guy must be Dr. Evil. He says that the work Walter has been doing since he was let out has made him more crazy than before. And when we see poor Walter alone in his cell hallucinating about talking to himself, we have to wonder if Dr. Evil is right.

At the FBI offices, the crew is working on finding Joanne by running her name through alias databases. Peter, having lots of experience with aliases finds her name quickly — so they widen the search for the boy to Joanne's latest address in Clarksburg.

Meanwhile, awful Joanne makes Ben try to finish his music, but when he can't produce, the image of his mother starts bleeding from her face and kind of fading. Argh! This is so wrong and mean! But, Ben is strong and keeps going.

Back in St. Claire's Walter has a chat with Dash, and although it doesn't go well at first, he's able to get out of him that the woman who took him was beautiful and promised things that he wanted, but none of it was real. She tortured him with images of his loved ones in a dungeon in a red castle. He says it was all a bad dream. Poor guy is jacked up!

Peter gets Walter out of the hospital, but Dr. Evil isn't happy. He's poked around in Peter's past and finds him to be an inappropriate guardian for Walter. He will now petition to custody of Walter and put him back in the hospital. Oh he's definitely involved in all this shizzle. I bet The Observer comes over for Sunday dinners! Peter threatens him to back the eff off (go boy).

Peter calls Olivia and tells her that the convo with Dash didn't go well, so he hopes she's having more luck. He does tell her about the red castle and wouldn't you know it! Olivia is standing right across the street from a big ass red castle! When the go in to investigate, it seems like it's an abandoned amusement park (super creepy!). Olivia and team search the place and find Ben hooked up to electrodes in front of lights. As Olivia tries to free him, Joanne comes in and attacks her. She escapes into a hallway where Olivia stops her — only to be thwarted by the damn red and green lights that flash in the hallway. Joanne escapes, but Ben has been saved.

Later, Peter tells Walter he was brave for going back to St. Claire's. Aw.

Joanne reappears at some mystery location with Mitchell Loeb! He's got his health back and inputs the finished (when did that happen?) equation into a computer. Loeb types the equation into a computer, and then attaches a strange apparatus to a locked safe. He places an apple inside, then secures the safe. It vibrates and hums, and when finished, Loeb, wearing a thick rubber glove, reaches through the back of the safe to remove the apple that was inside. Just as Joanne says, "It worked!" Loeb shoots and kills her. Then he makes a telephone call: "It worked" to some unknown person.

OK, WTF peeps. Is the apple cloned? What's the deal with a freaking apple? Did you spot The Observer? Thoughts please!

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Walter goes home again, or at least to St. Claire's asylum, this week to help solve a kidnapping case. The boy who was taken, as well as several others in the Fringe files, was a prodigy, and the people responsible for the kidnapping him used red and green flashing lights to distract and hypnotize their victims. Walter doesn't remember the details, but he's heard of this phenomena before. He, along with Peter and Olivia, must find those behind the kidnapping before the boy is driven mad, or killed. In other news, Olivia eats a doughnut (she is human!), Walter calls Astrid "lady" and drops his food obsession this week... read more

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Premiered: September 09, 2008, on FOX
Rating: TV-14
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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.

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