“There’s more than one of everything.” This statement has a significant impact on the five seasons of Fringe. It captures the show’s mythology, which revolves around a war between the Prime Universe and an alternate universe. It explores the contrasting motives and science-based nightmares faced by the Fringe team, where good and bad elements exist.
The love story between Peter Bishop and Olivia Dunham also plays a key role in the show. Both characters overcome their dark pasts to find solace and comfort in each other. However, the most important relationship in Fringe is the father-son dynamic. Dr. Walter Bishop, a mad scientist, will stop at nothing to save his son, even if it means destroying multiple universes.
In the pilot episode, FBI agent Olivia Dunham desperately seeks help from Dr. Bishop, who has been institutionalized for years. To gain access to him, she enlists the help of his adult son Peter, who is largely unaware of his father’s past actions. Throughout the series, Olivia and Peter’s relationship develops, allowing them to let go of their defenses and fall in love.
While Peter reluctantly becomes his father’s caretaker, their relationship faces numerous obstacles. Walter’s eccentricities, such as his love for LSD and his pet cow Gene, strain their bond. Although Peter eventually becomes the calming presence for his father during stressful situations, their journey is marked by a rocky start.
As the show progresses, it becomes clear that Walter is essential to the Fringe team’s investigations and the people around him. Olivia learns that she was part of a drug trial as a child, which was overseen by Walter. Additionally, it is revealed that Peter is not the original version from the Prime Universe, hinting at Walter’s darkest secret.
In Season 2’s episode “Peter,” the narrative delves into Walter’s past. After losing his young son to an illness, Walter discovers a parallel universe where Peter is still alive. In a reckless attempt, he brings this alternate version of his son back, sparking a dispute between the two universes. This episode explores the themes of love and the consequences of Walter’s actions.
Throughout the series, other father figures are also highlighted, such as Olivia’s abusive stepfather and Phillip Broyles, who is dedicated to his work. The show demonstrates that fatherhood takes on different forms and carries various emotional weights.
Overall, Fringe delves into complex themes, including love, sacrifice, and the limitations of science. It showcases the intricate relationships between father and son, while exploring the consequences of defying the boundaries of what is possible. The show’s writing, combined with John Noble’s outstanding performance as Walter Bishop, create a compelling and emotional viewing experience.