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|Air Date:||1 Oct 2009|
|Written by:||David Wilcox|
|Directed by:||Bryan Spicer|
|Guest Cast:|| Stephen McHattie as Raymond Gordon|
Kevin Corrigan as Sam Weiss
Michael Cerveris as The Observer
Navid Negahban as Malik Yusef
Claudette Mink as Diane Burgess
Patrick Sabongui as Ahmed
|Previously:||Night Of Desirable Objects|
|Transcript — Additional Images|
- Fracture is the third episode of the second season of FRINGE. It first aired on October 1, 2009. The Science Team investigates a deadly occurrence where a recent bomb blast has left no discernable trace of the explosive device. The perplexing circumstances return Walter to the lab to examine human remains in search of the source of the explosion. With the threat of more bombs and the hint of classified projects, Olivia and Peter return to where they first met.
Two uniformed police officers pull to a stop in urban Philadelphia, one hops out and crosses the street to the coffee shop. The other, Dan Gillespie, opens a newspaper and starts to read. While his partner is picking up the coffee, Gillespie receives a call on a cell phone. He answers with, "Yes, Colonel?" The caller tells Gillespie to go to a rail station and intercept a courier wearing a black trench coat and carrying a black briefcase. Gillespie drives away, leaving his partner standing in the middle of the street. At the station, Gillespie sees the man in black and orders him to relinquish the briefcase. The courier resists and Gillespie draws his weapon. Electronic displays throughout the station begin to flicker. Gillespie takes the briefcase and walks away. His body begins to crystallize; he screams and his body explodes.
At the bowling alley managed by Sam Weiss, Sam is coaching Olivia, whose hands are shaking, on how to tie her bowling shoes. Olivia grouses that she knows how to tie her shoes and Sam reminds her that she has suffered head trauma and that knowing how is not the question. He tells her that if she concentrates on the laces and forgets about her hands, the shoes will get tied. When Olivia asks Sam what he did for Nina Sharp, Sam says that he taught her to eat french fries, explaining that it is a simple process unless one has a cybernetic arm. Sam finishes tying Olivia's shoes and she tells him that she can not waste her time. Sam is moderately surprised that Olivia is not yet having headaches. He correctly surmises from the circles under Olivia's eyes that she not getting enough sleep each night and repeats that he needs to know when her headaches start. He then tells Olivia to her surprise that she can remove the bowling shoes and go home because he will be closing for the night.At Walter's Lab, Peter looks through ads for living space to improve the Bishops' comforts, but Walter objects to every advertisement Peter reads. Walters says he is perfectly happy with their current accommodations. Peter turns to Astrid and explains that he needs his own bedroom and that he awoke that morning to his father singing opera in the nude.
In the station in Philadelphia, Agent Tevez explains that the bomb analysts don't know what happened. There is no evidence of anything that would have served as shrapnel or of any explosive residue and that none of the witnesses provided any useful information. Peter comments that the station has anti-terrorism security, including monitors and electromagnetic pulse disabling devices. Tevez responds that whatever happened disrupted the camera system and that the recordings show nothing but static. Peter asks to see the tapes and Tevez says he will try to get them. As she walks away, Peter admits to Olivia that he might have a friend who can do something with the recordings.
← A medical examiner interrupts Walter as he begins to examine a corpse, but Peter intervenes and Walter is allowed to proceed. Walter believes that he has found shrapnel, but that it is crystalline, rather than metallic, in nature. Peter leaves Walter to his work and joins Olivia. Broyles arrives and says that no terrorist group has claimed credit for the explosion. Peter finds a piece of a Philadelphia police badge wedged into a bench and suggests that it's Gillespie's badge. Because there were no police among the wounded, Olivia asks where Gillespie went. Walter approaches the group holding an object and explains that the crystalline substance is organic rather than geologic. They identify Walter's object as human, probably Gillespie's ear.
At Walter's Lab, Walter and Astrid analyze the body parts collected from the rail station to determine what caused Gillespie to explode. When Astrid comments about Peter looking for new quarters for Walter and him, Walter asks where Astrid lives. When she answers that she lives in Sommerville, he muses about having gone the wrong way on a street and discovered a store that sells delicious apple fritters. He says wistfully that he has everything he needs in his current neighborhood.
Meanwhile, Olivia and Peter are watching as Slim Joe, another of Peter's technical wizard friends, recovers as much data as possible from the tapes from the station. Joe apologizes for not being able to do better. In response to Olivia's question, Joe tells the pair that radio wave interference could have caused the data loss. They wonder why the picture is obscured twenty seconds before the bomb detonates.
When Peter and Olivia return to Walter's Lab, Peter asks about Walter's progress. Walter compares the tasks to when he and Peter assembled a puzzle of a centerfold when Peter was ten years old. Peter explains that the puzzle was Walter's version of sex education. Walter uncovers his project and Astrid introduces Peter to the reconstructed Officer Gillespie. Peter asks if there is anything not immediately apparent that is out of the ordinary, and Walter tells the team that Gillespie had needle marks between his toes where he injected a serum that caused a chemical reaction. A reaction that solidified the water in his body and emitted massive energy, which shattered the body. Peters understands: Gillespie himself was the bomb.Peter and Olivia visit Gillespie's widow, Susan, at her home.
Outside the Gillespie home and walking back to the car, Olivia comments that Dan did not seem like a suicide bomber. Peter asks how to explain the medical kits, which he believes to contain exactly the serum that Walter was talking about, the substance that turned Gillespie into a bomb. Olivia responds that a persons blows himself up because he is waging a war, or making a statement, and that the police officer did not seem to be sending any messages. Peter asks about her headache and Olivia answers that the doctors had said that she might have them; she changes the subject and says they should get the vials of serum to Walter so he can analyze them.
In Oak Park, Diane Burgess slips out of bed quietly without waking her husband. In the bathroom, she opens a medical kit similar to the one retrieved from the Gillespie home that she has hidden, and fills a syringe with serum. With her foot elevated, she injects herself between the toes.Raymond Gordon surprises
Back in the bowling alley, Sam continues to counsel Olivia through her recovery. She confirms that the headaches he suspected might occur - have begun. Frustrated with the progress she is making with Sam, Olivia wants to know precisely what he knows about her condition. He tells her she has been experiencing acute nominal aphasia, common with head trauma, and that parts of her brain are still asleep. Eager to learn when her memory will return, Weiss diverts her again - he wants her to keep bowling scores manually, for a children's league - a lesson in patience.In his Lab, Gillespie's military file, and the revelation that the chemical weapon, cyanogen chloride, is part of the problem.
Broyles is joined by Peter and Olivia for a walk. They brief him on their research - "Project Tin Man", a classified military project, is part of Gillespie's background. Although the project has been closed and the names of US personnel removed from the records, three Iraqi doctors are still listed. Peter proposes he be authorized to return to Iraq to investigate - his only requirements are private transportation, cash and false identification documents. Broyles grants his request, but Olivia must accompany him.list of names to begin his search. Olivia asks about Peter's past relationship with Ahmed and gets no answers.
↓ In Walter's Lab, he and Astrid work to analyze the serum behind the bombing incident. Walter inserts a hypodermic needle into the fleshy opening of a medium-sized watermelon and injects a
Back in Iraq, Peter and Olivia are waiting for Ahmed to return. Peter orders them "Red Russians" to drink. Olivia sips the mint tea and vodka mixture, and comments on how bad it tastes. She then comments on the reputation he seems to have built during his previous activities in Iraq. As they make a friendly toast, Ahmed returns to retieve them. He escorts them to a busy commercial kitchen to meet one of the three doctors on the Tin Man list - Malik Yusef. Yusef eventually confirms his involvement at the hospital and the project, after Ahmed vouches for Peter. In a quieter part of kitchen, he explains that the program didn't work and was too dangerous. The soldiers at the hospital had been exposed to a synthetic nerve agent (cyanogen) developed under Saddam. The goal of Tin Man was to neutralize that nerve agent through a course of daily injections using a serum. Of the more that two hundred soldiers treated, only four survived; Dan Gillespie, Joan Klump, Ross Cavanaugh, and Diane Burgess. Yusef begins to explain the by-product of the serum treatments, but Olivia interjects that they already know... it turns people into bombs. Yusef tells them five doctors, a dozen U.S. officers, and whoever they reported to, are the only others that know about Tin Man. He recounts that one officer was memorable: as the program was being closed - Colonel Raymond Gordon argued that Tin Man should be continued. Yusef's impression of Gordon? Gordon is a vicious man - he has no regard for human life.
In Oak Park Illinois, Diane Burgess somberly watches from inside as her daughter plays in the yard. Her husband finds her and offers to drive her to the airport. As the Burgess family packs-up the minivan in the driveway, saying good-bye to one another, Raymond Gordon sits in his vehicle watching, across the street and hidden from sight, as Captain Burgess begins her mission.
Outside the Metro Station, the task force arrives and goes to work to intercept Captain Burgess. In the command vehicle, technical personnel report that video surveillance and 3-D triangulation modelling is up and running, and that snipers are posted. After Burgess arrives, she answers her encrypted cell phone... a phone that can't be tapped into. Deployed agents report that there is no sign of Gordon outside of the station. Walter reminds Broyles the modern security devices can scramble all types of radio wave triggers... and that Gordon will most likely be inside the building to initiate detonation. Peter figures that they cannot triangulate Gordon's position if they are jamming his detonation frequency - they would have to leave the frequency open to for that. Wanting to save Burgess, and capture Gordon, Walter estimates that they have about thirty seconds
Inside the Metro Station, Burgess takes another call from Gordon. He gives her the target... a man with a black trench coat and a briefcase. She is to accept the briefcase and proceed by taxi back to her hotel, where he will meet her. Broyles is tracking Burgess on an electronic schematic of the building, but Gordon hasn't begun the detonation signal just yet. Peter locates Burgess near the front entrance. As Burgess locates her target and moves to intercept the courier, Gordon activates a small handheld device to initiate detonation. As the task force rushes in, tech support reports that the signal is jamming their equipment, preventing triangulation, and the ability to interrupt detonation. Over the radio, Broyles informs everyone that attempts to jam the signal have failed. Burgess is going to detonate.terminate the signal. Walter keeps track of the elapsed time as he stands with Broyles in the tactical command post. Olivia drops the detonator on the ground and pulverizes it with her cane, stopping the signal. With the detonation signal terminated, Burgess' hand and arm begins to return to normal, and she collapses to the ground. Broyles orders all agents to move in after tech support confirms that the danger has subsided. Furious, Peter continues to pound Gordon until two agents pull him free of the criminal.
It's mid-evening in Walter's Lab, and a classic rock anthem plays as Astrid sits and works, Peter covers what remains of Officer Gillespie, and Walter returns with the local want ads. Walter announces he has found an apartment for them - two bedroom, semi-detached housing for professors, in a nice neighborhood... close to where William Bell used to live. Peter says he'll call Broyles to see if they can lease it.In Sam's bowling alley, Olivia sits with him as he measures her hand for a bowling ball. After some small talk,
In the interrogation room at the Federal Building, Broyles sits with Raymond Gordon as he narrates his bleak perspective. Gordon calmly explains that the enemy is among us, we are unaware and that nobody is doing anything about it. Gordon, and others, have taken matters into their own hands... to send a message to the enemy. Broyles wants to know what is in the briefcases of the couriers Gordon has been targeting. Gordon replies that collected data and observations are in the briefcase. Data used in planning for the war that is coming. Gordon can't tell Broyles exactly who the enemy is - but he knows that they want to terminate us... using our culture, technology, and science against us.
In a simple diner, a young man in a long dark coat walks in and delivers a briefcase to a seated man, then leaves. The seated man opens the briefcase and removes photographs of Walter Bishop.
- The Observer receives and reviews photographs of Walter from a secretive courier.
- Walter foreshadowed the fringe science of this episode (The Road Not Taken) with his comment - "Matter is just energy waiting to happen. The average adult at rest contains enough potential energy to explode with the force of five very large hydrogen bombs." Peter concurred.
- Production Notes
- Blair Brown and Kirk Acevedo were credited, but did not appear in this episode.
- Continuity Errors
- Physics. Walter and Astrid determine that the detonation frequency is 331.6 Megahertz. Olivia then briefs the law enforcement team that Dr. Bishop had discovered the specific V.H.F frequency used for the detonation. 331.6 Megahertz is not a V.H.F. frequency, it is a U.H.F. frequency. Very High Frequency (VHF) is 30-300 Megahertz. Ultra High Frequency (UHF) is 300-3,000 Megahertz.
- Recurring Themes
- Alternate Universe. Olivia experiences severe headaches, and nausea, then has visions of the alternate universe she visited (There's More Than One Of Everything), and envisioned in other episodes.
- Weaponizing Humans. The theme was visited with the radical drug regime inflicted on the female victims (The Cure), and again with the pyrokinetic twin women (The Road Not Taken).
- Episode References
- Olivia has visions of William Bell and the World Trade Center towers from her journey (There's More Than One Of Everything).
- Cultural References
- Star Wars. Olivia remarks to Sam Weiss, "Cut the Yoda crap and tell me what's happening to me?" -- referencing the popular science-fiction icon, Yoda, a wise sage, a know-all, see-all mentor who answers profound questions by asking philosophical questions that allow the individual to find the answer within themselves.
|The two Canadian National locomotives (Night Of Desirable Objects) each bear the logo "CN". This foreshadowed the goal of Project Tin Man in Fracture, which is to combat the effects of Cyanogen, a nerve gas with a chemical formula made up of two cyanide (CN) groups linked together (NC-CN), and alludes to the fact that the CN-related explosion occurred in a train station.|
• Blue Bayou by Roy Orbison • Jazz Me Blues by Les Paul
• Can't You See by The Marshall Tucker Band • The Air That I Breathe by The Hollies
|— Plot Relevant Questions —||Address theories about questions on Fracture/Theories Ask minor questions on the Talk Page|
1) Do not answer the questions here.
- Is the coming war connected to the parallel universes's Walter trying to get Peter back?
- Did Sam Weiss do anything tangible for Olivia, or did he "coax" her into fixing herself?
- Is the effort to weaponize humans into bombs related to the research (The Cure) conducted by Esterbrook and Intrepus?
- Why is The Observer covertly receiving images of Walter?
- Is The Observer working for the parallel universes' Walter?
- What are the "war plans" Colonel Raymond Gordon mentions in his talk with Broyles?
- Why did Raymond Gordon use up his limited assets when the problem he is trying to solve seems to be substantially larger?
- Did Gordon have more assets available to him than we witnessed?
- Is Colonel Gordon an agent of ZFT?