Season 1 Episode 13

The Transformation

Aired Friday 9:00 PM Feb 03, 2009 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (18)

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  • The Transformation

    Maybe this will I say then might look something heard from a broken record, but it is still true: "Fringe" can, in almost all its episodes, have openings spectacular views of the best currently on television, but the rest of the episode very rarely can match what we proposed at the beginning. Exposes excellently the case, but can not get the promised development.

    This episode suffers from this same problem. While it can be more balanced than some of the other, it still disappointed not to go over a style to "The X Files" (perhaps for fear of comparisons) and prefer to stay within its formula. And after that, you ask, 'then, but after all, at the beginning criticized the series for being too "The X-Files" and now, criticizing it for not being "The X Files" enough? "Yes, it is true that, initially, I too like the series "The X Files", and gave this comparison a negative connotation, but simply the lack of originality and not the narrative style. In fact, if you want to do a series like this, nothing better than having as examples those who had recognized qualities. And "The X Files" is one.

    I loved the virus / experience of the week. Much to her comic books. Very hulkiana. And I thought it had enormous potential. But the rest of the episode was passed around the capture of the man who produced the virus - which brought up the episode great moments of tension and the possibility of seeing for the first time Olivia (Anna Torv) and Peter (Joshua Jackson) truly infiltrated - , and this was not exactly the way I wanted to see be taken. And do not want something else more thereof. For example, and using the new "The X Files", after an early episode like this, there could be several ways that Mulder and Scully would have pursued, would be more of a scientific or supernatural, and we never know for sure what the scenario that would be chosen. In "Fringe," no. The episode is always on the search for understanding of science and the people who are behind the phenomenon. No surprise there. We know from the outset that, as strange as the phenomenon is starting, the path is always the same: there is always someone behind the phenomenon that seems to be associated with a secret organization. Nothing is ever the natural order. Nothing is ever the supernatural order. It is always scientific. It is always the responsibility of man. There was only one episode that made us doubt the essence, "The Arrival", and no more. What, in 13 episodes is too little.

    But not only the weak development of the initial idea was this episode. Another problem identified was that, in addition to the formula that repeats itself, the fact that the series is starting to repeat what already too well not usually the norm. In the beginning, back to being presented with the fascination of the people behind the series of aircraft disasters, and, later, Olivia will yet again into the tank in order to find out more about the memories of John Scott (Mark Valley .) During the visit to Massive Dynamic, we reaffirmed the death of John Scott. So this means that each time the character will appear, to say that Olivia is in the tank?

    In the end, we still have time to plot clich. As alleged that the memories of John Scott Olivia has no longer even are, but are manifestations of his consciousness, we learn that, after all, the great betrayer was just infiltrate, but as was part of a top secret operation, which no one would admit that it existed, could not see his name cleared of charges of treason. Really? I've seen this type of plot in over one hundred films and more than a dozen series. Still, there'll have to suck it again. But there is not enough imagination to create different stories?

    Still, and despite having been an episode that left me somewhat disappointed by what I mentioned earlier, this does not invalidate it has its merits and, as had also mentioned in the first few paragraphs of text, was notable more narrative balance compared to standard, so as well as the tension of the scenes in which the Olivia and Peter meet the bad history, turned out to be better than usual. And, without doubt, better than that "thing" last week.
  • One of the best so far

    This episode was one of the best so far. It wraps up Olivia's and John Scott's relationship and moves along the story nicely. We get to learn about what John was actually doing and who he was working with. The episode begins with a guy on a plane and he turns into some kind of monster and crashes the plane. The Fringe team must investigate this and see why he turned into the monster. This was a great episode and it continues with the main story.
  • Olivia's back into the mind of John Scott

    This episode started on an airplane with one passenger suffering from an ailment caused by fringe science. This guy becomes a beast and kills everyone on board; Olivia once again indulges herself into the mind of John Scott to get answers by getting herself in her bra and panties, surely who thought of this, though I'm not complaining. She learns that John was possibly working for a Black Ops cell inside the government and so were the two dudes that turned into man-bear-pigs. The memories of John were helping to determine why and who was trying to sell the man-bear-pig-dog virus and Olivia tracking down the sources through the memories of John. Peter tagged along with Olivia to sting out the Baddies and grab with Bio-Weapons. Walter continues to humour us all with some more great one liners 'the one nipple rule' still intriguing to see that Massive Dynamic were keeping his body although is does seem now that John's memories have now gone from Olivia's Mind. This was a much better episode than the previous one as it indulges into the mythology of the whole show.
  • Let's hope this is a sign of things to come.

    So, Zack Whedon, eh? Yup, you guessed it folks, that's Joss' brother; you know, the one whose new show is about to premiere on US TV and all the critics appear to be giving it a bit of a slamming. Zack has nothing to worry about though because 'The Transformation' is the best episode of Fringe in a while and sees the show taking an about turn from the nosedive it looked set to take in the wake of its return to our screens a few weeks ago. The annoying FBI agent intent on ruining Olivia's career is pushed to the wayside. The irritating sister and daughter, there only to give the show a chance to have a few schmaltzy heart to heart moments? Barely to be seen and when she is, it's actually relevant to the overall plot. The overall plot, meanwhile, actually offers the viewer answers (shock of shocks!) and, even more remarkably, appears to put to bed the whole John Scott narrative. Well I never! I thought we'd be clinging onto the one for at least another four seasons. And while I'm certainly not convinced that we've seen the last of the bugger, it's encouraging that the programme is at least tying the loose ends up so that it wouldn't be a bone of contention if we didn't. Thus, he tells Olivia what he was doing while she's in that bloody tank again, Massive Dynamic and Broyles reveal to Dunham that they've kept John's body and they actually explain what for, and, get this, Bishop tells her that her mind is successfully venting Scott's memories and that she'll soon be rid of him. To wit, she gets bank into the flaming tank and agrees to that marriage proposal he was always going to make. Awww. Well, that just about covers every dangling plot strand related to the whole ex-partner business and, for now at least, closes the door on this avenue. I couldn't be happier. It was, after all, more than a little contrived and essentially simply a distraction from the business of Pattern-related case solving.

    Speaking of which, the investigation is pretty neatly handled this week. The premise is deliciously disgusting, its continued execution delightfully disturbing (the teeth removal on the plane is just... euck) and that undercover scene is decidedly dramatic: you could cut yourself on the tension in that one, even if it is obvious that the black ops guy is going to have another virus-induced spasm before he can reveal the crucial information. Much, much better than recent efforts this and, encouragingly, it seems to close a few less desirable narrative doors rather firmly. Let's hope this is a sign of things to come.
  • Great episode where a man turns into a giant porcupine.

    The episode starts out on a plane with a man writing in a journal and his nose starts to bleed. He tries to get help from the flight crew but the think he is a terrorist or crazy. He goes into the bathroom where he proceeds to transform into another creature that looks like a giant porcupine and busts out and attacks the plane causing it to crash, kill all passengers. The team is called to the site by Phillip Broyles to investigate the remains of what is believed to be an animal, but Olivia determines by a vision from John Scott that it is Marshall Bowman a man John had worked with. There is another man in the vision she doesn't know. Later back at the FBI Olivia identifies the other man as Daniel Hicks. They bring him in for questioning and he start to transform like Marshall Bowman did, but they tranquilize him to slow it down. Olivia decides to go back in the tank to talk to John Scott and he tells her to talk to Daniel Hicks and he will give them information. It is learned that a man named Conrad is bringing in the virus to sell it in Chicago. Olivia and Peter go undercover as the buyers after the real buyer is arrested. They go through a gambit of questions until the say that one man is sick. They get made when Conrad comes in the room and Olivia says the man has been sick since "Christmas". Conrad tells his men to kill them, but the FBI busts down the doors to arrest Conrad and his team. They had an antidote to the virus and Daniel Hicks was saved. Olivia is back at the lab and Walter comes in and she requests to go into the tank again to talk to John.
  • Keeps the ball rolling...

    Great episode and a nice way to wrap up the John Scott angle. Still good after taking a break from watching it. The "rubber science" is still compelling and the transforming virus was awesome, especially when it happened on the plane at the beginning of the show. The show still delivers on the X-Files meets Crime drama and has excellent pacing and delivery. More mysteries abound with the Massive Dynamics doing what they can with the Federal Agents. After having John Scott's body since early in the season and revealing all of the clues that were unearthed puts forth an image of co-operatiion with the Feds and Olivia Dunham. Can't wait to see the next episode.
  • John's final visit

    Although it's probably not true, I feel that this was the last time we saw John Scott, at least in Olivia's head. The episode was a very nice conclusion to his storyline, as we find out who he worked for, and how he truly did and does love Olivia.

    This was a fantastic story, and definitely the meat of the episode.

    Unfortunately the rest wasn't so good - the effects in the beginning were cheesy, and the episode started a little slowly - annnd I also didn't like how much hype Conrad got yet he turned out to be just another bad guy that gets captured the first second he appears on the screen.

    But still, this was a very important episode, and a very enjoyable one.
  • Great!

    Another great episode of Fringe. Olivia seems to have found peace with the John Scott issue. I feel this are a little less than clear cut, but that is me. We seem to be trying to make Massive Dynamics look less like the evil culprits of all the freaky science accidents. I don't know if this is misleading or if the writers felt they sold it too strongly on the first half of the season. Also, I'm still waiting for Massive Dynamics to pull in their Peter favor. Also, I think it is interesting that the FBI guys just accept how handy Peter is in a fight and don't seem to be asking many question. Overall, another fine episode and one where I actually believed Olivia acted appropriately in her approach to the John Scott problem.
  • A Pattern but not really.

    Okay, I loved it but no more plane patterns though. One of the things I really liked about this episode was that it was actually linked to a biological weapon and a group of people who actually wanted to use it. Olivia and the gang track the "cell" down and learn several things about the group, one of which is that John maybe not be the traitor people thought he was. After going into the tank again, Olivia learns that John was actually attempting to stop people like Conrad and loved Olivia very much and wanted to tell her everything.
  • Olivia and Peter go undercover to investigate after the discovery of bizarre remains at a jumbo jet's crash site.

    Boy this show just keeps it coming! Yet another episode of the mysterious madness called the "pattern" which this time mutated people into some half man/half creature alien! I absolutely loved the airplane scene as the man tried to do his best to prepare himself and the crew for the inevitable and then of course the mutation itself.

    The scenes dealing with John Scott's memory and Olivia were well played out too. The writers allowed us to see even more of what has gone on behind the scenes with this mystery character and at the end flushed out any doubt of who side he was one. John and Olivia were able to come to a lovely conclusion for their last session together inside his memory.

    We didn't get to see our recently introduced nemesis try to hinder things as usual but it was nice to see that they were able to get a good story without needing to use him playing interference on the group as he has been ever since showing up.

    This show is doing a good job keeping the intrigue on the frying pan as I know for myself I'm still wanting to see what this "pattern" is all about and who are all the players involved. For now it's still a rather elusive mystery but that's a good thing!!!
  • A great episode centered around trusting those you're not normally accustomed to trusting.

    This was a very compelling episode that revolved so much around trust that every decision was laced with possibly catastrophic consequences. It was nice to see Massive Dynamics and its leader again. Their willingness to help with the investigations throws previous allusions to antagonistic wrongdoings into question. I thought this place was behind many of the events in the pattern. Now they're helping out. Its flips like this from JJ that keep me guessing and watching. John's reappearance was very well done. I thought Anna Torv was so good in this episode. She was great at conveying the struggles with trust she was experiencing without having any lines. The final scene with Olivia and John was good, but it will become even better if John ends up being bad even in whatever afterlife he is in. On the special effects side, the transformation looked amazing. I've never seen a facial transformation look any better then the one that was shown a few minutes into this episode.
  • You think people in this show would be too scared to fly after this and what happened in the first episode.

    You think people in this show would be too scared to fly after this and what happened in the first episode. Apparently they are not though. Again Olivia goes into Scott's thoughts, dangerous apparently, but it seemed like the only way to get things done. This time though, things don't go so smoothly as the last two times. I liked this episode, but I can't shake the feeling that Olivia has it all wrong and that John Scott didn't tell her something. Though it is nice to get at least some explanation, it doesn't really explain a lot of things. Great episode, let's see how they follow it up.
  • Olivia and Peter go undercover to investigate after the discovery of bizarre remains at a jumbo jet's crash site.

    Olivia and Peter go undercover to investigate after the discovery of bizarre remains at a jumbo jet's crash site. The beginning of the episode was a little odd, but it worked out once they were able to connect what was going on back to John. Where the last episode failed to make the connection to something bigger, this one did and it made the episode better for it. Oliva goes back into the tank, which makes the third time in 13 episodes which I think is a good number. The tank is a good device to use for flashbacks without having to actually use flashbacks in the actual show. I thought her two trips into the tank were good in this episode, with the second one being a bit better then the first. It looks like we have seen the last (or at least for now) of John Scott. Everyone may still consider him a traitor, but Olivia doesn't and that was all the closure she was looking for in the end. Right now I think the show is benefitting from connecting storylines to big picture things like Massive Dynamic, John Scott, and Mr. Jones. Epsiodes where they go away from those formulas tend to be the episodes I am the least interested in. Those episodes usually have more Oliva / Peter in them but in the end they havent done much of anything other then stare at one another so that's becoming a little old as well. The next epsiodes looks to be a big one for the show, we will see what they do.
  • now we have Lycens in the show!!!

    people transforming into something new !!! didn't like actually it was way beyond the truth !!
    the effect were good .. like yeah a new creature but it was will made.
    now we know that John wasn't a betrayer, but it wasn't that will written, it could be made better :s
    i liked the end when Olivia got the chance to say goodbye to John, and that she knew the truth about him.
    but the episode in general wasn't that will written, like they could made John's story much better, and made some addition to the general story about him, not like this that hes now no longer included i guess.
  • The issue with John Scott's memories inside Olivia's head is concluded in this episode, and the efficiency of the Fringe department is solidly proven.

    The Fringe department is given a good reason to exist after Olivia's team manages to capture one of the world's most renowned bio-weapons dealer. The capture happens with the assistance of one of two persons infected with a dangerous virus that causes extreme physical mutation. We don't see Harris in this episode and perhaps this is a clue that government pressure against the department is going to ease down a little bit.

    On the other hand, the case is linked to the Pattern and to John Scott in that the person helping Olivia is John's former NSA partner. Olivia learns all that by diving into the tank once more, and accessing her memories of John more than once in this episode. The sequences of her and John are very intense and have this ambiguous, metaphysical-but-not-quite-so atmosphere that is so well done in Lost. Like an extremely vivid and detailed dream. In the process of communicating with John's memory she learns that he didn't betray her, but worked for the NSA and his goal was to capture dangerous terrorists. That sounds like a very simple explanation but it will do for the time being. Olivia is finally able to get closure and rid herself of the negative feelings she was nursing towards him. It was also interesting to see the final conversation between them, given that most of the communications they had were the way Olivia's mind had to deal with the memories and where they came from. It was interesting to see how at first there was an intense conflict (Olivia even shot John in the hotel room), but in the end they reconciled and pledged their love to one another. That means that Olivia had never really gotten over him, and her mind was all too prepared to accept her positive emotions towards him and forgive him. Now that she has, it remains to be seen how her emotions towards Peter will change.
  • Deadly virus turns people into a giant porcupine.

    This was another great episode of Fringe and it was good to see a bit more of John Scott's story and also Msssive Dynamic's involvement in the story arc. The monster that he man turned into was not the best I have seen though. There do seem to have been rather a lot of incidents on planes throughout the season - time to think of some new plot devices, maybe? The ending with John and Olivia may be a little too sentimental for some but perhaps it was the right time to leave him and move the story on in a new direction.
  • Persistence of memory

    There are two simple ways to consider this episode. The first is the most positive interpretation: this is the culmination of everything the writers intended concerning Agent Scott and Olivia's absorption of his memories. The second is the most negative: that this is the writers' attempt to bring resolution to a plot element after realizing that they didn't know where to go with it.

    As much as I'd like to trust that Abrams and his writing staff knew what they wanted to do with Agent Scott from the beginning, this felt a little too pat for my tastes. The only thing that keeps me from subscribing to the theory that they fudged the resolution is the nature of any network freshman series. Networks generally pick up new shows for a total of 13 episodes. The "back nine" comes after the first several episodes prove the viability of the series to a sufficient degree.

    As a result, a smart production staff will develop a basic arc for those first 13 episodes, while introducing enough material to give additional episodes a strong foundation. And that could explain why the Agent Scott elements came to a rough conclusion in this episode. This would have been among the last episodes produced if the series had not been given a "back nine".

    That said, I liked the idea of Olivia's psychology being hard to fathom. I thought it was a compelling complication to have doubt regarding the origin of Olivia's thoughts and actions. And considering how often Walter mentioned the danger of going into the tank, and impossibility of communicating with John in the "memories", there should have been a more compelling payoff.

    This situation does confirm the nature of the relationship between the Fringe Division and Massive Dynamic. Since we already have sufficient evidence that this connection is questionable at best, it lends credence to Olivia's suspicions that there may not be a right side to this particular war.

    It also introduces the notion that other branches of the government intelligence community have teams working to understand and combat The Pattern and those taking advantage of it. More importantly, this effort seems to have been, more than anything, an attempt to mitigate the civilian casualties of this war.

    Olivia and her team still have a particular role in the ongoing struggle, even if its nature is changed by this episode. Walter is connected to many of the players (probably on both sides), and Peter could be a product of precursors to The Pattern. Olivia seems to be desired on both sides, for reasons that have yet to be revealed. I'm sure the rest of the season will delve into that aspect of the show, but I'll still be a little disappointed that Olivia's memory problem was so easily resolved.
  • A man turns into a weird animal on a plane and kills everybody.

    JJ Abrams fetish with planes and plane crashes continues on the latest episode of Fringe.

    The Walter and Peter back and forths are quickly becoming less and less a part of Fringe and that upsets me. Outside of Peter answering the phone, "Walter Bishop's House of Horrors" I cannot recall any truly noteworthy quotes from this episode.

    I did like the Daniel Farday-esque character on the plane and I also liked host past episodes were referenced. It's not good for ratings to keep the show episodic, but to loyal fans who aren't just watching the program because it follows American Idol want it.

    The sappy ending could have been done without though. No need for the whole marriage proposal on a cutting edge science fiction show.