Welcome to week 26 of the Geek-A-Long! If you’ve been knitting or crocheting with Megan-Anne and I from the beginning, then you have enough squares to make your afghan. If you’re picking and choosing your favorite scientists or are making a full-sized 48-square blanket, then let me introduce you to my favorite mad scientist this year: Walter Bishop from Fringe.
Yes, you heard that right. Walter Bishop is my favorite mad scientist of all time. Maybe it’s his love of Red Vines or the way he knows the chemical formula of the perfect root beer float, but it’s probably the duality of his character:
Walter is like a King Lear for television. He’s got all of those extremes. He goes from the raging fool into these incredibly tender moments. He had moments that, to most of us, are quite insane and then show this incredible lucidity. He can be laser-like at times. But do you know what? I don’t know that those aspects of a person are far different from a lot of us, to be honest. It’s just that Walter’s barriers are so low that he actually does the things that most of us sit on. That’s a great opportunity for me as a character actor, obviously.
Fringe is a blissful hybrid of The X-Files and Lost. Although, Fringe actually has the decency to resolve its mystery-filled plot lines unlike another show I just named. The majority of the first two seasons revolve around an extraordinary string of strange events referred to as “the Pattern,” which almost always involve Walter Bishop and one of his numerous inventions. Granted, every time a new evil technology showed up, it wouldn’t have been such a surprise if Walter hadn’t removed parts of his own brain…
Regardless of how much LSD Walter does or that he insists on having a live cow in his laboratory, you can’t help but love him despite all the twisted things he made before his time in the asylum. Sure, he eats Valium like candy and has a complete inability to remember Astrid Farnsworth’s name, but you can’t help loving a man who blew a hole in the space-time continuum to save his son.
I admit that I didn’t watch the show until it came to Netflix. I always wanted to get into it, but Fringe isn’t the type of show you can just jump into at anytime. It is, however, the perfect show to binge on. I watched the entire series over the course of one long weekend when I was sick. Then, I made Megan-Anne sick too, and we rewatched the whole thing together.
Let me tell you, my second viewing of the show was difficult. Every time I noticed September in the background, I would break out with giggles and then get really sad because spoilers.
Somewhere between eating Red Vines and passing Megan-Anne the box of tissues in the first episode, she asked me what the commercial bumper images meant. Where they part of the plot? Did they symbolize something? It was the only thing they never really addressed in the show, and I assumed it was just cool imagery. But she did an internet search and discovered that the six-fingered hand, the seahorse, etc were part of a code. Each glyph represented a letter and spelled out a word during an episode. In the pilot, they spelled out observer.
There were a lot of different things we could’ve put on the square to honor Walter Bishop: Red Vines, the chemical structure of LSD, a cow. But we decided to chose one of the glyphs since it was a neat part of the show. The six-fingered hand on the left is the letter U and the right glyph equals the letter S. We tried to fit the glyphs for W and B on the square, but they refused to fit.
Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Walter Bishop pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @jac_attacking or Megan-Anne @Doctor_Llama with the hashtag #geekalong!
If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.
“Please allow me a moment to entertain my fantasies. They often lead to a truth.” – Walter Bishop
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