TV Recap: 'Fringe' Episode 407 - 'Wallflower'

Fringe Episode 407


Written By: Matt Pitts & Justin Doble

Directed By: Anthony Hemingway

Original Airdate: 18 November 2011

In This Episode...

A man is hurrying home. His wife calls, and he admits he feels like he is being followed - but he doesn't see anyone. She calls the cops anyway. As he approaches his apartment building, an invisible force shoves him inside and kills him. The cops show up and find a corpse. One of them thinks he sees something - an invisible blur - and shoots. When Fringe division shows up on scene, the cop admits that he felt a presence there. Lincoln suggests a ghost - "That is your word, not mine." Inside, they find the corpse: pale, white hair, red eyes. He looked like an albino. Other fun findings include a mucus over the corpse, and some of the perp's blood.

The blood belongs to Baby Boy Bryant, who (supposedly) died at four days old. He was born albino with a severe sensitivity to light. Obviously, he didn't die. He was "acquired" by Massive Dynamic and named Eugene (or rather, U. Gene - Unknown Genetic Disorder), where he underwent a kind of camouflage experiment, essentially making him invisible. The irony of the situation is that the genetic experimentation had the side effect of effectively curing the extreme photosensitivity that would have killed him. It was assumed that he perished in a lab fire 10 years ago, but obviously that wasn't the case either. Instead, he set up a mad scientist lab in the sub-basement of an apartment complex. He killed people in order to steal their pigment in the hopes of making himself visible again. It seems to be working, but only allows him to be visible for short periods of time.

Walter figures out that under ultraviolet light, Eugene would be visible, so Liv heads up a team armed with UV flashlights and K9 units to find Eugene. Liv finds him, glowing an unnatural violet-white color (I bet this guy would be tops at a rave), and tries to talk some sense into him, insisting that she can help. The "cure" he has found for his invisibility will also reactivate his genetic disease and surely kill him. Eugene doesn't care. He just wants to be seen, and he doesn't trust Olivia. When Lincoln comes calling for her, he uses the distraction to escape. Out from the glare of UV light, he is "safe."

But Eugene isn't dead. He is back in the apartment complex, fully visible. He grabs the elevator at the last second, joining a pretty woman, one who he has had a crush on. She smiles, glad to see him. "I see you every day, and I was worried. I thought you might have gotten sick. I'm Julie." It was a friendly but brief encounter, enough to make Eugene deeply satisfied. He remains on the elevator after she exits, and slips to the floor, dead.

Also: Olivia has been flirting tentatively with Lincoln. She worries, though, that the cortexiphan trials have somehow stunted her emotions - Nina assures her it has not. She has also been suffering from extreme migraines. Lincoln has been trying to be friendly to Peter - he is the only one who treats Peter like a human being. Peter figures out pretty quickly that Lincoln has a crush on Olivia, then feels bad: "You two were together in your time, weren't you?" "Yes, we are," Peter corrects him. "But it's okay. The Olivia you are talking about is not my Olivia." He is working on creating another doomsday machine, thinking if the first one sent him here, maybe another one can send him back.

Those migraines aren't normal. As the episode draws to a close, gas seeps into Olivia's apartment, knocking her out. Men in gas masks enter, inject her with something from a metal briefcase, mess with some surveillance cameras in the room, and leave - with Nina Sharp supervising the whole ordeal.

Dig It or Bury It?

This was an intriguing one-off, but that is all. I'm ready for them to get back to the crazy mythology stuff. We haven't seen the alternates in awhile. I miss them. We did have a nice little cliffhanger that seems to allude to a return to the insanity. In this third "reality," this alternate time stream, it is beginning to feel like maybe it is an entirely new universe.

Walter Babble

Walter has a lot of animals in this episode. Walter has two white mice that he runs through a maze. One of them has been treated with the same experiment as Eugene, so it is invisible until UV light shines on it. The mice are named John and Yoko. Also, Walter gets a small octopus. He doesn't do anything with it - just watches it swim around in a tiny hamster ball inside an aquarium. Astrid gets the bill, and is annoyed that she is going to have to justify over $800 for an octopus that, as far as she can tell, is little more than a pet.


Fringe is gone until January. Expect frustration and sadness as I await the new episodes impatiently. I normally like these new split-seasons that a lot of networks are doing, because I prefer my TV to come in long stretches of new episodes, rather than new ones every other week. Anyway, when we return, Peter insists on going to the alternate universe, hoping he can get Walternate to help him with his doomsday machine.