FRINGE: 1.01 Pilot Rewatch

Fringe Pilot Rewatch

As some of you may know, we’ve started our Fringe Rewatch over at our partner site, We’re rewatching every episode from the Pilot to The Day We Died, with specific focus on new perspectives and the meaning of the story with Peter Bishop apparently ceasing to exist.

Our Pilot Rewatch has already been cooked. Below you’ll find a few select quotes from the article, should you want a taste.

Here’s a wee sample of my thoughts from rewatching the pilot (for extra context, see link below):

  • Peter: “Be careful what you wish for”. That takes me straight back (or forward) to Subject 13. What is it with that episode and its proximity to the Pilot? Perhaps it’s because 13 is somewhat like an origins tale in its own right?

  • It slipped my mind that Olivia forced Peter to come back to the US with her by threatening him with a file. One that didn’t exist. Obviously not a direct connection, but interesting how Olivia used something imaginary to coerce the very guy who taught her the power of imagination when they were kids. Again, this is why I appreciate Subject 13 – its ripples are infinite.

  • Seeing John Scott again raises the question of whether he’s still alive in the ‘new timeline’? I doubt John will be returning to the story, but it would be interesting to know whether he and Olivia have a backstory.

  • Initially, John Scott doesn’t remember what happened to him. He needs Olivia – who is technically from another place – to help him. Will Season 4 feature such a concept?

  • Charlie’s speech about becoming “obsolete” was always a powerful line, fantastically delivered and captured. And with Peter becoming “obsolete” after fulfilling his “purpose”, it just takes it to another level.

On a retrospective rewatch scale, I rated the Pilot 8/10.

You can find the full post here and our rewatch posting schedule here. Feel free to join us over there or over here as we journey back in preparation to Season 4.

Want More? Dig deeper with our previous Pilot write-ups:


  1. Flip says

    I think many ideas changed when season 1 finished … but lets rewatch to see if there is any connection to the third and specially 4th season … i think we wont find many.

    These ones you described are really not “connections” for me … i dont see this way.

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  2. LoveFringe says

    First time I saw the pilot I though I was watching a movie. I saw Fringe again at episode 1.19, I waited until the DVD came out and caught up. Now its my favorite show. second half of season 3 almost a disaster in my opinion, but I have faith for season 4.

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  3. Ben says

    For me the Pilot improves significantly when placed in the context of the rest of the show. It’s always interesting looking back at the characters and considering how they’ve changed. Looking forward to reading the rest of your re-watches!

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  4. matt says

    I agree with everything both Flip and LoveFringe . I hope the showrunners realize that the fans feel disconnected in this way from S1 and I hope it’s either intentional and something mind bogglingly good is in store for us or that they at least have realized this disconnect and are now working to reconnect all of these loose ends to where the story stands now. this would be the time/place literally with S4 being a reset of sorts. they had better not use the reset to do away with the need to ever explain these things and to just start telling a whole new tale or I’ll be writing Mr. Pinkner myself to let him know he has got the wrong idea completely about how the true, OG fans-from-the-start feel about the show/showrunners lol.

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    • matt says

      and that, yes technically, he can do what ever he wants, but we don’t have to swallow it. we can get dissatisfied, and he does have a certain obligation to appease the fans, otherwise he’ll be out of a job…

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    • Fringeee says

      I remember the showrunners say that almost all fan’s questions will be answered by the end of season 3. Indeed, nothing from what you think had happened really happened, ‘nothing ever existed’ is the answer to all the questions, cheers fringe fans. and hey, the number of unanswered questions climbed like a charm.
      regardless, I think Season 3 did brought up some connections from season 1. It’s just that they weren’t enough to fulfill our starvation for explanations. But I do believe season 4 will uncover many mysteries, namely the bold-headed guys dilemma. Besides I kind of liked the building for the fourth season. It gives you the impression that some of the opacities are about to be examined. Therefore, I have great hopes.

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      • matt says

        They did say that, but they also said that LOST would address all the questions fans had and well… I think I’m with George RR Martin on that one. Pulling a LOST became an expression I used for a bad ending long before I heard GRRM say it. And I think ‘nothing really happened’ is cheating/a stupid answer to give fans who invested their time because they thought TPTB has something cool up their sleeve not, oh, yeah, uhm it never happened…

        Anyway, I hope we’re right about where S4 is going. I have high hopes for it.

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        • Flip says

          LOL, I agree completely … lets hope this story about “nothing happened” or “we can do whatever we want” is not just an excuse to forget all the missing facts/questions/etc … but between us here, I don´t know you but I really think they have changed the show course in the middle due audience, hope I am wrong.

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  5. Real1 says

    Ok .. i will let you to be surprised .. first episode i saw was “Ability” … then i saw s2 “over there part 2 ” then i went back to s1 “midnight” … then S2 all episodes !! then went back to s1 “Pilot” … and totally i was jumping from my seat with how Olivia was jumping after Steig .. that roof chasing was the most fantastic jumped that Fringe has ever had …..

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  6. Carla says

    Well, I see the pilot as an introduction to the whole thing. I don’t feel like it has to have the whole thing linked to it. It’s mostly introducing the characters and the main, main topic and getting people hooked so they can tell us more. I think it does a great job doing that. It is my favorite episode still. It’s so complete and entertaining.

    I watched Fringe at once in order in a month (a couple of months ago) with having watched only Power Hungry and the episode before that with the moths (can’t remember the name) when they first aired (I gave up on the show back then because I had thought it was too creepy for me, but came back to it when I realized they dealt with parallel universes). And since then I have re watched the whole thing in order again plus watching a few lost episodes here and there. Soooo, in my simplistic and forgetful head it goes like this. S1 we learn this weird cases are happening, we find out Walter has something to do with it. Later we find out that there is the ZFT and Jones seems to be the head of it and he is trying to get to the other side to kill Bell. We also find out that those strange cases don’t just have something to do with Walter, but with Olivia too. Jones dies, the ZFT (as a terrorist group) dies with him and so does the so called pattern (and that’s something that bothers me, since the strange cases in season two seem totally disconnected). At the very end of season 1 we learned there is something up with Peter. S2 we learn about the shapeshifters and that there is actually something beyond Jone’s ZFT group that’s been causing weird stuff to happen. First half of S2 is pointless to me, we’re introduced to Sam, get a little of humanized Olivia and then BOOM, best episode of season 2, Jacksonville. We finally find out that the weird cases are not about Walter or Olivia only but that Peter is involved too. End of season 2 rocks, in the finale we are introduced to the other side and the person really responsible for the impending war Jones used to talk about, not to mention the shapeshifters and some of the weird cases related to the pattern. S3, first half ROCKS with the intro of the other side so that we really don’t know which side to side with. The Olivia and Peter relationship develops and then second half of season 3 sucks, seems pointless but hey they are still being consistent so I go with them. S3 ends with war being finally declared by Walternate turning on the machine (war we’ve been talking about since season 1). Then reset and I don’t know, but I have faith and I really don’t hold my expectation tooooo high. In a world where Glee is said to be the best show on tv right now, I only expect this to be coherent, believable and relatable. I don’t need to be awed.

    I never expected to be able to link everything else to the pilot. I think it’s pretty awesome that we can relate the whole S1 to the pilot and that we can relate major development in the story to S1.

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