The ego is also something Dr. Krick seems to have used to convince his subjects to keep doing the experiment, however hard the side effects (and ultimately of course killing them). Dr. Krick at first preys on their vulnerability, uses false hope to stoke said vulnerability into a fire that makes of them thieves (“I don’t have the stuff to make another batch”), and keeps them in a state of acceptance by telling them things such as: “You are a pioneer. Men like you – your participation in this experiment will help me discover a way to eliminate side effects.”
This matter of the ego is likewise related to Walter’s previously mentioned unravelling. Remember his reactions previously when faced with fringe events? Walter’s reactions included excitement and childlike wonder. Contrast that with:
Olivia: How would injecting someone with the heaviest compound in the world make them float?
Walter: It shouldn’t have. It runs contrary to the laws of nature.
Peter: So how is that possible?
Walter: I don’t know! Do I look like I have answers?
The theme of good versus evil often comes up in Fringe, and it struck me that Dr. Krick has been one of the most evil characters we have yet to meet. To tell someone vulnerable who has for the first time in a long while (if not ever) ‘walked’ that: “I don’t have the stuff to make another batch” – if that’s not evil, I don’t know what is.
The scene with Michael and his father in the prison is completely different than any we have seen, but struck a chord of familiarity with regards to Peter and Walter’s relationship. The way Dr. Krick addresses Michael (“I hurt some people, Michael”) is as if he sees him as a child, just like Walter won't accept that perhaps Peter is the best person to involve in investigating the machine. Interestingly enough, while both fathers had the right intentions, they end up hurting their sons. It’s only afterwards, when the fathers realise that all their sons wanted was a father, that they realise the depth of their folly: