X-Files Season 1 ep 19–24

1x19 Shapes

Werewolves! Another dumb episode with some clumsy native legends and other nonsense all thrown together. It’s about a guy who turns into a wolf and kills people every ten years or so. It’s all pretty dumb and no reason the FBI would be investing this, but sure why not. It’s obvious that it can literally only be a werewolf, but as usual, S is like no way, it’s some super rare combination of things all occurring at once, and they both say OK fine and argue for while. Then they don’t catch it and then some native guy acts all mysterious, like it lives in the end! Ahhh-wwoooo!

1x20 Darkness Falls*

Classic! Bugs in the Seymour demonstration forest are alien bugs and they’re eating people up because who knows why, doesn’t matter! Another of my favorites. Young Bosch is playing a hippie guy with a sweet mustache, and the professor who goes nuts and is a drunk in Californication is the sheriff! They’re all stuck in this cabin in the deep woods where alien bugs come alive at night and put people in cocoons up trees and suck them dry. M & S find one guy in a tree cocoon like this, desiccated. Doesn’t make a lot of sense that they find zero other loggers from the group of like 20, or why space bugs want to do this in the first place, but who cares. When the night comes and the generator goes they’ll all be dead! There’s a great tension in the generator wearily cranking along as the only thing between them and badness as they wait for dawn. Then when it runs out, they try and hike out and eventually get stuck in the truck and entombed and woken up in a mobile hospital and wouldn’t you know it they can’t go back and check because the government burned everything up again or something. I think this one works so well because of the atmosphere, the wetness, the isolation, the fact that they can actually for once lean into it being in the pacific northwest, since this one is set in Oregon or Washington.

1x21 Tooms*

Classic! Stretch is back! I’m surprised they made two episodes about the same guy/thing in the same season, but he is pretty memorable when measured against the other monsters of the week. Hey his doctor is The Greek from The Wire! Weirdly Tooms doesn’t escape, he gets paroled? Awesome legal system. Although to be fair, it seems to be mainly because M gives this totally bonkers address to the court where he lays out that Tooms is some shape shifting immortal serial killer and is basically screaming so they’re like uhhh, if this is who put this guy away, he can’t be guilty. I think this is the first time we see Skinner. He’s telling S that she’s doing a bad job in the X-Files, and the cigarette smoking man (CSM) is lurking behind Skinner. Apparently they have a 75% solved & convicted case rate which seems insanely high. Doesn’t matter to Skinner, he’s all like, goddammit, investigate these totally insane things conventionally! No idea what that is supposed to mean. So Tooms is out, looking for the one last delicious liver before he can go hibernate, but M is on his tail wherever he goes! And after a few false starts it turns out the person he’s after is M himself! He’s in his apartment! But no, it’s a trick, he’s hurting himself and framing M by having his shoe print on his face which is pretty weak tea Tooms. Finally he kills someone and goes to make a new nest in the City Square mall where I used to do grocery shopping! Oh no! M crawls down some tiny tunnel that would definitely exist under the mall and Tooms is there! And it’s actually terrifying! Tooms bursts out of his nest and speed crawls after M down this tunnel. Finally M escapes and S gets Tooms all crushed up in the escalator, his blood staining the stairs. They end at UBC in the rain with M mysteriously talking about how a change is coming.

1x22 Born Again

Another sort of ghost one. We’re in Buffalo although it looks like Gastown, near my office. And hey it’s Janice from Friends! This creepy little girl is found in an alley by Janice and brought into the police station where she uses mind power to throw a decent seeming detective out of the window to his death. The kid does full over the top non stop creepy acting, staring blankly, appearing in the window, destroying dolls, Shining type stuff. Of course, she has some sort of telepathy power, sort of like the ghost boss episode and the twins episode. It’s not very fun, it feels like Law & Order: X-Files. There’s a funny scene where her powers get the bad detective (who rides the bus?) to get his scarf caught in the door and strangled to death. It’s all something to do with her reincarnated dead dad or something who the other (now dead) cops double crossed. M pushes for this very risky child endangering hypnosis which makes the kid spazz out but he doesn’t care about her health, we need to find out about ghost souls here! Of course S is all, this is bullshit who cares. Some good usage of super computer technology which somehow lets us see the soul of the dead detective in the kid in some dumb video on the computer. Sure. In the end the kid is all OK and freed from the spirit after the few remaining bad detectives confess to all their bad stuff. M is still mad they won’t do more invasive hypnotherapy on this child, and concludes by writing angrily in his diary or something, about how it’s unresolved, a plot device which isn’t ever used again. Maybe he got a blog instead.

1x23 Roland

A learning impaired — but maybe Good Will Hunting style super genius — janitor, Roland, is up to no good. He works at a fancy amazing science lab where they make jet engines or something. He uses the machine to kill a scientist then goes and does fancy math shit on the whiteboard. Like many other episodes there’s something to do with a ghost or whatever inside Roland. Turns out the ghost is the dead twin brother of Roland (his body is cryogenically frozen, remember when that was popular?) who is somehow controlling Roland to do his science work and kill those damn nerd scientists he doesn’t like. This M is sure of. Shockingly S does not agree with this idea and can barely contain rolling her eyes back into her head as she hears M claim (without any proof to be fair) that this is happening. Get with the program S, at this point wouldn’t she just think, well this is nonsense, but M is always right, 100% of the time, so what the hell let’s get on the right side of one. In the end of course M was right although they can’t prove anything, and it seems like Roland is now fully under the benevolent (?) possession of his brother, as he heads out into the real world.

1x24 The Erlenmeyer Flask*

Classic! Insane car chase to start this one, cars literally FLYING over a hill as some guy races towards the waterfront with the police after him. He gets shot but escapes clean into the waterfront around North Van. He’s no doubt some sort of alien. I guess the season finale had to be about aliens, fair enough. DT calls M late at night — look into this. I don’t get why DT never just straight up tells him stuff but always has to be cryptic although not really, it’s all easily solvable hints which would get him in just as in trouble as just saying it. Mega weird thing — M has some device which prints out pictures of VHS recordings, which does not seem like a real thing. S spazzes out on M about following these DT bullshit tips, she’s going home. I guess she wants to get back to working important cases about werewolves and killer ghosts. S takes the lab stuff from a flask and gets it analyzed by a pal scientist, something to do with monkeys and extraterrestrial DNA. Too bad M didn’t have a phone that took pictures back then because he goes inside a warehouse full of aliens in tanks but when he goes back with pals it’s allll gone. Double bummer because outside, S bonds with M and tells him she’s totally flipped and decided he was right! Aliens do exist! DT gives them some chat about a cover up. The doctor is dead! Alien embryos! Shadow governments! M is abducted! In the end S has to exchange the alien fetus for M but DT is shot dead. Trust No One! CSM puts the alien fetus in possibly the same warehouse as the Arc of the Covenant, deep inside the Pentagon. They’re shutting down the X-Files! It’s over! Cliffhanger! The truth is out there!