Do Shapeshifters Dream Of Electric Sheep?
|Talk||Do Shapeshifters Dream Of Electric Sheep?||Theories|
|Do Shapeshifters Dream Of Electric Sheep?|
|Air Date:||14 October 2010|
|Written by:|| David Wilcox|
|Directed by:||Ken Fink|
|Guest Cast:|| Sebastian Roche as Thomas Newton|
Gerard Plunkett as Senator Van Horn
Shannon Cochran as Patricia Van Horn
Marcus Giamatti as Ray Duffy
Madison Guppy as Lemonade Vendor #1
|Transcript — Additional Images|
Do Shapeshifters Dream Of Electric Sheep? is the fourth episode of the third season of FRINGE. It first aired on October 14th, 2010. Thomas Newton activates a dormant shape-shifter to deal with the consequences of a recent action against a high-ranking official. Walter and the team gather evidence and move the investigation to Massive Dynamic where Walter faces a potentially perilous situation.
In a posh Boston bar and grill, Peter and Bolivia enjoy an evening alone - getting to know one another better. They look around at other couples and imagine the backstory of each, based on their appearance and body language. Bolivia projects that one man with longish dark hair and a hat is a banker. She thinks his hair is his link to his individuality, and he works with the gal he is with. Peter has another take on the gal... her sexy outfit reveals that she was hoping their date was about something more than work. They decide to weave another tale about a second couple and select a pair that are age-diverse. Peter's assessment that the man has money because he is older than his attractive female friend leads Bolivia to jab at the con man aspect of Peter's personality. Peter defends himself - he simply understands transactional needs. Needs where each party has something the other party wants. Moral lines in the sand aside, unless you've put yourself in another man's shoes, you can't really judge their situations. Peter is certain that Walter is wondering where he is... so the two call it a night. As they begin to leave, Bolivia heads to the restroom and takes a long, contemplative stare into the mirror. What has she gotten herself involved in?Brookline, MA. Senator Van Horn pulls his luxury sedan over to the side of a quiet residential street and lowers his window to make a transaction. The two young business ladies recognize their friend and learn that he has been looking for lemonade all day. Lucky stars - they are selling lemonade, and their elected representative wants some. The Senator is parched after running chores all over town for his wife. He gladly pays the expense for what just might be the best lemonade he has ever had. He drives off without receiving the change the girls expected to give him. As he moves down the street, he watches the girls waving in his rear view mirror. They haven't realized yet that he is leaving them a very generous tip. Distracted with his good deed and charmed constituents, Van Horn fails to notice the heavy truck that is about to broadside him and send him to the Emergency Room.
At a local hospital, emergency medical personnel rush the severely injured Van Horn to the operating room. He is unresponsive with a possible head injury and no pulse, but the doctor does not want to defibrillate because Van Horn is breathing. Patricia Van Horn received notification and waits for any word about her husbands condition. Broyles joins her in the waiting area - he heard the news and got to the hospital as fast as he could. Broyles comforts his friend but demands more information from the hospital staff about the Senator's condition. In another part of the building, Thomas Newton makes his way through the halls in search of Van Horn. The emergency medical staff starts to prepare their casualty for the operating room and Newton finds them. Newton shoots the doctor and continues firing until he can remove Van Horn unabated. Several security guards arrive and are immediately shot before they can take any action. Broyles rushes to the gunfire and is shot at as well. Taking cover at the end of the hall, Broyles returns fire and hits Newton in the right side of the torso. Newton grabs a hostage to hide behind and threatens to kill her if Broyles does not put his weapon down. Newton immediately shoots Van Horn in the left eye, fires at Broyles, releases his hostage and shoots his way to the stairwell behind him. Broyles runs toward Newton and watches as he jumps down the tall core of the stairwell, to safety and freedom. Broyles approaches Van Horn and finds the politician has the mechanical eye of a shape-shifting soldier from the parallel universe.
At Massive Dynamic Headquarters, Nina Sharp and Peter Bishop walk and talk on the way to retrieve Walter Bishop, who is in the middle of inflicting a disjointed and painful motivational speech on the corporate scientist that now work for him. Peter is having trouble believing that Nina is not having negative feelings, or worried, about William Bell leaving Massive Dynamic to Walter. Nina assures Peter that she is fine with Bell's choice of Walter as head of the large conglomerate... Walter is brilliant, and brilliance is what Bell, and she, believe in. Peter worries for her - Walter shredded the laws of science and opened a portal to another universe in a tiny college laboratory - imagine the damage he could do with a multi-billion dollar corporation.
At the hospital, Broyles briefs the science team on what has happened. Van Horn was admitted at two PM. Newton came in fifteen minutes after that and started a shooting spree. Bolivia looks at the security footage on the monitor and assess her colleague as he rolls the gurney with Van Horn down the hall - it's like he has no fear. It appears that Van Horn and Newton are fellow operatives and Newton came to retrieve him after he was injured. When Newton could not extract Van Horn from the hospital, he shot him in the head to permanently disable him. Walter's mind wanders from the self-medication he administered earlier in the day. Broyles is adamant -- James Van Horn, a ranking politician with top level clearance, a good man and a good friend was compromised... the team needs to determine how long ago Van Horn was replaced, and for what purpose. They need to make a full accounting of every committee Van Horn sat on and every classified briefing he accessed. Peter extends the worst case scenario - if a sitting Senator is a shapeshifter, maybe the entire government could be compromised. Broyles agrees - he will task the CDC to arrange for blood tests for Congress.
Walter begins his tasking, examining the body of the shapeshifter to see what he can find. The Junior FBI agent stuck with holding Walter's leash isn't particularly enthralled with Walter's inquiries about button candy. She doesn't get answers to her questions until Walter shares that he is envious of William Bell... whom he believes is responsible for developing shape-shifters - an inspired part machine, part organic creation. Peter joins the dissection and rescues the young agent - he brought some red licorice for Walter. Walter is able to calm the vividness of his hallucinations now that he has some science to focus on. Peter thinks that shooting Van Horn directly in the left eye is a pretty specific method to disable the shapeshifter. Walter agrees - there may be a power source that was targeted, maybe they can repair it.In a forested area near an old trestle bridge, Thomas Newton is shirtless and administering some repairs to his damaged frame. He answers an angry call from
Walter continues to inspect the damaged eye socket of the shapeshifter for clues. Peter watches closely over Walter’s shoulder and learns some interesting facts about mercury for the next game show he appears on. Walter grows frustrated – he can’t re-animate the shape-shifter there in the hospital. He wants to move the body back his lab to work on it. Peter is fine with that, he will make the arrangements to deliver the shape-shifter back to Harvard. Walter clarifies his position for Peter… he meant his state-of-the-art lab back at Massive Dynamic. Okay, Peter will call Nina. While Peter is dialing, Walter notices the left hand of the shapeshifter flinch. He dismisses the vision as a by-product of the LSD he took earlier. Wait – Peter sees the hand move too. Walter must have triggered something. Bolivia enters the room to get a status check – good news… the shape-shifter Newton said was disabled – it is still kicking.
Astrid Farnsworth arrives on the Twenty-third Floor of Massive Dynamic with a storage box she has brought for Walter. The security monitor doesn't have her on his access list, but he does have an Astro Farnsworth listed. She vouches for herself and is granted access to the lab. Inside the lab she begins to unpack and assures Walter she has everything he requested, including his candy buttons. Walter is excited to autopsy his latest shapeshifter - he is making a treasure map of it, with the intent of finding the data storage unit he is certain is contained within. he plans to use visual stimuli to map its neural pathways. With luck he will determine everything it knows... who it was working for, other shapeshifters, etc....In the office of the late Senator Van Horn, Peter and Bolivia search for anything that might indicate what the shapeshifter has garnered since he has Homeland Security briefings going back three years. Bolivia starts leafing through the files while Peter searches in, and around, the desk. Bolivia tells him she can handle the inspection, in case he wants to check on Walter and see how he's doing. Peter doesn't need the time off, he is sure Astrid has joined Walter by now, and that they will call if they have learned something. Both resume working until Bolivia announces that Van Horn made twenty-nine requests for classified intelligence last month. Peter has nothing from the desk. Bolivia reminds Peter of the shapeshifters M.O. - he is going to be careful, and not leave anything that would tell us he wasn't who he was impersonating. Peter profoundly points out that the shapeshifter did not have one thing covered - the fact that today was the day it was going to die. Bolivia's cell phone activates, she looks at it and announces that Olivia's sister Rachel is on the other end. Peter says to say hello for him. Bolivia walks out of earshot into the hallway to talk to her accomplice, Thomas Newton. He is miffed that she keeps calling and leaving messages for him - etiquette dictates one message... he'll return her call when able. Bolivia doesn't have time for his sarcasm, their Van Horn shapeshifter is on the Twenty-third Floor of Massive Dynamic and Doctor Bishop is trying to exploit what data he can from it now. Newton tells her he will take care of the problem. Back inside the office, Peter jimmies open a large lock box and finds it full of photos and files. Everything in the box is about the science team... and every case they have ever worked on. Van Horn knew everything.
In Yonkers, New York, Ray Duffy sits at a nice family supper with his wife and young son. A knock at the front door gets Ray up and answering the visitor. Ray opens the door and drops his jovial attitude when Thomas Newton announces he has an assignment for him. Newton wants Ray to shift into a new body, someone with clearance at Massive Dynamic who can gain access to the Twenty-third Floor and Van Horn. Duffy is a little flustered at the visit... he hasn't seen Newton in five years. Newton reminds him - that's the way it works. After the mission Duffy will take a new identity and leave no traces behind, nothing that might expose them.
In the main elevator lobby at Massive Dynamic, Broyles briefs Bolivia and Peter as they pass through the police security checkpoint. He tells them he has agents stationed throughout the building, and city police manning a security perimeter, in case Newton attempts to retrieve the Van Horn shapeshifter from the building. Walter exits the elevator and is glad to see the team has returned, though no one seems interested in his interruption. Peter tells Broyles that the files in Van Horn's office suggest he has been collecting intel on the team for at least the last two years, which suggests when he might have been shifted. Broyles is keen to know - was there anything that would indicate who the shapeshifters are working with, or how they get their orders? Broyles tells his investigators that blood tests for everyone who works on the Hill has checked out, and that testing for FBI and DoD personnel with level four classification, or above, is underway. Peter thinks that is not good enough. Testing must be broader - Van Horn cannot be the only mole. Walter finally get his two cents in - maybe we should just ask Van Horn! If you want to know who the shape-shifter has been working with, just ask him.Upstairs in his lab, Walter prepares to demonstrate that some neural activity remains in the shapeshifter. Everyday objects affect only a minimal reaction, but,
At the Duffy residence, Ray prepares for his assignment in his dark, quiet bedroom while his wife sleeps. He unlocks a wall safe, removes a pistol with a silencer attached, then tucks the weapon in the small of his back under his belt. He also removes the device that allows him to assume the form of any human he chooses. Heading out for his mission, Duffy notices that his son is still awake. He stops to check the room and comfort his boy. While a monster alarm was not sounded, there are reports that a monster may be under the bed. Ray then gives the room a once over and reports all-clear - no monsters. Ray shares his perspective on monsters to help his son through the night. Sometimes monsters are not all that bad. Sometimes they can be sweet, pure and capable of great love. In fact, one of them might become your very best friend. The seven year-old hits the irony nail on the head - Ray is his best friend. Ray tells Nate he is off to work and will check on him when he comes home.
Broyles escorts Patricia Van Horn to Walter's Massive Dynamic lab and introduces his team. Bolivia immediately begins addressing the duress that Van Horn must be feeling, given the circumstances. Pat Van Horn responds to the emotional manipulation - things are beyond comprehension... the granddaughter just had her first birthday... the Senator was so happy holding the infant in his arms. Broyles senses the drain she is feeling, but Van Horn stiffens her will, she wants who did this to her husband.Inside the lab, next to the shape-shifter, Patricia Van Horn starts talking
Walter grabs an elevator to return to his lab. Just as the door is about to close, Police Officer Ray Duffy joins Walter for the ride up. Walter has to share his grand thought with the stoic policeman standing next to him - the stegosaurus had a brain in its ass... a massive cluster of nerves above the rump, the sacral ganglion where short-term memory was stored separate from long-term memory. Silently, Duffy removes his shape changing device from his pocket, then turns to study Walter as he rambles.
Walter returns to the lab on the Twenty-third Floor of Massive Dynamic and is greeted by the security monitor as he exits the elevator. A few seconds later, Officer Ray Duffy exits the elevator and approaches the security man and is rebuked - Police are not allowed here, they are strictly working security in the lobby.
In the cafeteria downstairs, Peter and Bolivia sit and share thoughts. He thinks Van Horn’s wife must have noticed something different about the Senator since he has been a shapeshifter for two or more years. Peter thinks some more and second guesses his own theory. Maybe Patricia Van Horn made excuses to avoid dealing with, or to explain away, any peculiarities she was detecting in her husband. He compares those actions to what he has been doing since they returned from the parallel universe – explaining away the subtle differences he has noticed in Olivia. Bolivia smiles and questions his assessment. Peter thinks she seems like a completely different person - less burdened - more patient. Peter likes the change, it is good, but different. Astrid joins the duo without Walter – she expects him to be right back. Peter bolts from the table to find Walter.Upstairs in the lab,
Waiting for the elevator up to find Walter, Bolivia dismisses the disappearance as a likely visit to the restroom. Peter is certain that something must be wrong – Walter left his pudding behind. The elevator finally arrives in the lobby of Massive Dynamic and Officer Ray Duffy, makes his way past the two as they hurry in for the ride up to Walter’s laboratory. Peter suddenly realizes that the cop they just passed must be involved. He stops the elevator from leaving the ground floor and starts to pursue Duffy. Bolivia stops him, he should go find Walter – she will go “find” her shape-shifter. Once Peter’s elevator has left, Bolivia’s sense of urgency evaporates.
Peter exits the elevator and finds the security man flat on his back on the floor. He rushes to Walter’s lab and finds him in the same condition. With a little coaxing he revives Walter, who begins mumbling about the stegosaurus having two brains. Bolivia joins the Bishops with news that she couldn’t find the policeman they passed in the lobby. She calls for medical support after Peter tells her Walter took a pretty bad knock on the head. Walter starts to regain his senses and reports that the intruder took what they were looking for – the data in Van Horn. Astrid finds the trio and runs in to help Walter. He tells her he could have been killed. Peter starts a search for Duffy on the buildings security cameras, hoping to catch him before he can change bodies.Ray Duffy returns to his house in Yonkers and finds Thomas Newton waiting for him outside in the dark. Newton is curious – Duffy hasn’t shifted into another human form yet. Duffy says he didn’t have to – he recovered the memory disk Newton wanted. Newton takes the disk and places it in his vest pocket – then delivers the harsh news, he ‘’took care of’’ the Duffy family. Ray Duffy is incensed, why did Newton kill his wife and son? They were his life. Newton sees the weakness in his shape shifter …he has become emotionally attached during the years he was waiting for a mission. Newton assures him he will have another life, and that this was just a way-station along the way – it is what they were made for. Duffy continues to be distraught over his loss – so Newton shoots him in the forehead with a silenced pistol.
A few minutes later, as Newton loads the shape shifter corpse of Ray Duffy in to the trunk of his sedan, Olivia and Peter arrive in their vehicle. Both exit the car to apprehend Newton, but Newton jumps into his car to flee the scene. Peter returns to the drivers’ seat of his car while Olympic class marksman Bolivia Dunham fires three rounds in the general direction of Thomas Newton. A car chase ensues on the wet streets of late night suburban Yonkers. After several near collisions with opposite direction traffic, the chase enters a narrow tunnel. Newton attempts to pass traffic, then swerves and rolls his vehicle several times. Bolivia approaches the car, and the dazed Newton, with her pistol drawn. Peter stays back and starts calling on his cell phone for assistance. Out of earshot of Peter, Bolivia asks Newton about the disk, then takes it from his pocket and hides it from Peter. She tells Peter she hasn’t located the disk, but they can look closer, once Newton is secured.Federal Detention Center, Bolivia walks to Newton's cell and tells him the disk from Van Horn that Ray Duffy took from Massive Dynamic is secure. Bolivia places a small rectangular tablet through the viewing port for Newton to take. He studies the gift and advises her that she will have a very difficult time without him. Bolivia is not worried, knowing that there are plenty of machines already in this universe to take Newton's place. Newton warns her about the compassion she is beginning to display -- her emotions will betray her someday and her integrity and self-respect will haunt her. They will form a line that she won't be willing to cross. But, that's not his problem anymore. She slides the viewing port shut on Newton and his advice, then leaves down the darkened corridor reflecting on the accuracy of his statement.
In a noisy bar, Peter sits alone with a pint of ale and a plate of pub grub when his cell phone
In his cell, Newton ingests the tablet that Bolivia brought him.
Peter arrives at the front door of Olivia's apartment, as requested. Bolivia hesitates briefly, then let's Peter in. She admits that she did not invite him over to talk. Seconds later they embrace and kiss romantically.
In his cell, Newton begins to convulse from the effects the tablet has caused internally. On the floor, his convulsions cease as he lay disabled in a pool of his own mercury.
Bolivia and Peter romance their way to Olivia's bedroom. Clothes are shed along the way as they seek more comfortable accommodations.
- The Observer walks toward the exit on the ground floor of Massive Dynamic, as Bolivia, Peter and Broyles meet with Walter.
- Easter Egg (The Plateau). The Patricia Hotel, Milo's hideout, and Van Horn's Tavern, near the pedestrian overpass, figure into the alternate universe scenery.
- Names. Senator Van Horn was referred to as Dennis (Earthling), but throughout this episode, he was called James. In Van Horn's file, he was married to Dorothy. His wife, Patricia in the episode, however, was never referred to by this name.
- Cultural References
- Electric Sheep. The episode title, and some of the plot subtext, parallels Philip K. Dick's novel - Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?.
- Robbie The Robot. The iconic robot appears on television in the bar where Peter receives a text from Bolivia. Although the robot is best known for appearing in Forbidden Planet (1956), this particular movie clip is from The Invisible Boy (1957).
|— Plot Relevant Questions —||Address theories about questions on Do Shapeshifters Dream Of Electric Sheep?/Theories Ask minor questions on the Talk Page|
1) Do not answer the questions here.
- Senator Van Horn
- Was the car crash that led to his death deliberate and intentional?
- How long has the shape-shifter used his identity?
- Was the real Senator interested in the Fringe Division before the shape-shifter?
- If so, did this make him a primary target of the shape-shifters?
- Was the shape-shifter a "senior operative" because of the access he had as a Senator?
- Was his interest in the Vasiliev case (Earthling) part of his shapeshifting mission, or because of his friendship with Broyles?
- How does he know the whereabouts of his shapeshifters, given that they occasionally assume new identities?
- Who was overseeing the shapeshifters while his head was frozen?
- Was his head frozen the entire five years since Duffy last saw him?
- Does Newton have a short-term memory chip in his lower back?
- Did the tab he ingested permanently disable him?
- Was his deliberate demise in the detention facility part of a larger scheme?
- Did any of her words and/or actions lead Peter to start suspecting her true identity?
- What is she contemplating in the restroom at the bar and grill?
- Is she developing personal feelings for Peter?
- Does she miss (homesick for) her real life in the other universe?
- Ray Duffy
- Why did he allow Walter to live when he found him in the Massive Dynamic laboratory with Van Horn?
- Was he aware of Walter's importance in the war between the universes?