Season 1, Episode 3 “Squeeze”

Look Dana, who’s side are you on?”

“The Victim’s.”

We’re well on our way into Season 1, and after two episodes related to the mythology of the show, The X-Files deals out its first Monster-of-the-Week: the genetic freak, Eugene Victor Tooms. I’ll confess this is one of my favorite episodes of all time, and this rewatch was particularly enjoyable due to the fact that I found a few nuggets of goodness I’d previously missed. That’s saying something folks, because like many of you, I’ve seen this episode more times than I’ve got fingers on both hands. Probably more times than I’ve got fingers AND toes, if I’m being honest. 


I must have seen this episode at a critical point during my adolescent development — I have never been able to shake this image from my subconscious. I still, nearly 15 years later, give storm drains a wide berth. He’s in there, y’all. Yellow eyes and all.

keep your distance!

keep your distance!

George Usher has my deepest sympathies. This poor guy had THE WORST last day ever: presentation fell flat, working late, got wife’s answering machine, attacked by liver-eating-mutant. Ouch.

RIP George Usher


lunch with tom

We find Scully at lunch with an old friend from her class at Quantico. This scene offered me one of those aforementioned nuggets: Scully’s class of cadets is only two years out of the academy at this point. That puts Scully one year out from her rookie year. I can’t believe I missed that the first time around. Colton doesn’t take long to prove himself to be a classic ambitious narcissist. Where Scully can give one of their classmates props for a major promotion, Colton complains about it not being one of them. He then pokes at Scully — inquiring about ‘close encounter of the third kind’ and her partnership with “Spooky “Mulder. Scully immediately defends her partner: “Mulder’s ideas may be a bit out there, but he is a great agent.”mrs. spookyThis is why we love her. Colton jumps at the chance to segue into a case that’s “out there.” He’s on the rise in the prestigious Violent Crimes Section and he’s been handed the reins to a case that he needs help with. From here on out, it’s clear his motive for inviting Scully to lunch is nothing more than an underhanded attempt at getting Mulder’s input on the case.  I’d almost be able to forgive him for this — the guy’s a loser –if he hadn’t already made a jab at “Spooky” Mulder. I’m defensive, I know,  but every time I hear it from another FBI agent I get the sudden desire to punch them in the mouth through my T.V. Especially coming from the guy with the striped shirt and polka-dotted tie.

bad tie wars

Bad Tie Contest: 1st contender

At the Crime scene Mulder is wondering why Colton didn’t just ask him for help. Scully offers that he felt more comfortable talking to her about it because they’re academy chums.  It is super endearing that Mulder is shocked to learn he has a reputation. 
  vlcsnap-2015-07-10-09h00m11s359 why make them uncomfortable

I love this scene in the office for many reasons:

1. This moment. Duh. He may be half-teasing and half-serious with her here, which is heart-breaking and too cute at the same time. And I just can’t with him. He’s adorable.

Do you think I'm spooky

“Do you think I’m Spooky?”

2. Mulder’s  a keenly perceptive observer of human behavior ( profiling golden boy, remember) and Colton isn’t a mystery. The instant Colton digs at Mulder with a “little green men” comment, Mulder’s done with him.  He immediately launches into a tiny rant about the Reticulum Galaxy, and Colton is too dense to decipher if Mulder is serious or joking.

mess with colton

 Scully, in all her glory, does nothing to stop Mulder and I love her for this. Her minuscule half-smirk at Mulder’s reticulan comment is a cross between embarrassment and amusement: a lot like when you’re BF says something inappropriate at a party…you’ll berate the behavior later, but you’re trying like hell not to laugh at it in the moment.

embarrassed scully

lock of hair!

Wayward locks of hair!

 3. “What in the hell is he doing?” Working your crime scene, you ingrate. Finding a fingerprint that you missed. Go home or start taking notes, Colton. Fox Mulder is working. 

print located

Or go home and change your tie. I mean, seriously???

worst tie contender #2

worst tie contender #2

Returning to their office, Mulder pulls some prints from an unsolved case he found in the X-Files. The dates of these previous murders go back as far as 1903, prompting Mulder to declare that technically, he and Scully had this case before Colton. They decide to work their own separate investigation.

Glasses appreciation! Also...this raises our Gazing Tally to 4

Glasses appreciation! Also…this raises our Gazing Tally to 4

Worst Tie Contender #3

Worst Tie Contender #3


chillin' profiling serial killers

What’s of interest to me is that Scully is the one who pens the profile of Tooms. In all honesty, I’d have expected it from Mulder, as he is the criminal profiler of the pair. But for whatever reason, we’re allowed the opportunity to see her hard at work and listen to her profile as she delivers it to the VCS good ole’ boys.  Keep in mind, Scully is only two-years out from the academy, so this briefing with the VCS is a big deal. She’s also the only woman in the room. (Yet another reason I thank Chris Carter for giving her to us). scully vcs guysIt’s clear there’s a small amount of yearning on Scully’s part to earn her membership to this boy’s club. Everyone in the room is impressed with her profile, garnering her an invitation to join the stake-out. She’s pleased with the results, but  uncomfortable at their jab at Mulder:  “I know you’re assigned to another area, Scully, but if you don’t mind some over time you’re welcome to come aboard with us on this . That is, if you don’t mind working on an area that’s a bit more down to earth.”  After all, she’s assigned to the X-Files too. In her mind, the insult is as much hers as it is Mulder’s.

mulder freezeScully is assigned the George Usher crime scene and she’s waiting in the parking garage. Riddle me this: why is this adorable man even here? I doubt Scully invited him, so I’m led to believe that Mulder came here to check up on her. After work. Hence the sexy-college-professor look he’s rocking. He thinks Tooms won’t return to this location because he’s already been here and the thrill is gone.  Interestingly, this is one of the few times that Mulder is wrong about a profile. But he does this ridiculously cute flailing run when he realizes his mistake, and the way he says “Scullay” is enough for me to give him a pass.

mulder flails

hello tooms

Hello Tooms. Creeper.

AND…he’s man enough and respectful enough to give her credit for being right in her profile.

you were right

“You were right.”


look how they lean into each other -- PARTNERS!

look how they lean into each other — PARTNERS!

Tooms passes a polygraph and the VCS guys are ready to let him go. Mulder insists that “Scully is right. He is the guy.” He attempts to explain that the two questions Tooms clearly lied on are reason enough to keep him in custody. Due to the extreme nature of the questions, the VCS dismiss them and release Tooms. I love these next few moments. Colton asks Scully if she’s joining them and she politely thanks him for the opportunity to work with the VCS, but she’s officially assigned to the X-Files. This moment, for me, is the official stamp on their partnership. Scully makes it clear that she is staying with Mulder. She could easily use this opportunity to step out of their basement office, but she stands her ground alongside her partner. AND, she’s incredibly gracious throughout this exchange. Dana Scully is a class act and we don’t’ deserve her. Colton also gets this glare when he offers to get Scully off of the X-Files:mulder glare

And THE glorious Shipper Moment is approaching… keep scrolling past these bad ties.

contender #6. Are those sandwiches???

contender #5. Are those sandwiches???

bad tie contender #5

bad tie contender #6


Squeeee

Ah, this moment. It still makes me smile after all this time. Scully asks Mulder why he kept pushing it in that room with the VCS when he knew they wouldn’t believe him. He replies: “Maybe I thought you caught the right guy. And maybe I run into so many people who are hostile just because they can’t open their minds to the possibilities that sometimes the need to mess with their heads outweighs the millstone of humiliation.” He does not care what they think of him. Scully accuses him of being territorial in the room, but before she can take it back he has to get her attention and explain his actions. Mulder needs to lock in with her eyes and the only way he can get this done is to touch her.

Why the necklace? I can’t say for sure. Its an overtly intimate gesture, but I think Mulder realizes it is much more powerful than if he had grabbed her arm or said “hey, wait a minute.” When these two have something to say to each other, they need to touch one another. They’ll hone their nonverbal communication to an art form throughout the series, but they always establish some kind of physical contact when one of them needs to hear the words said by the other. Mulder’s taking this moment to let Scully know how much he appreciates and respects her already. He needs her to hear and feel every word that he’s about to say.

Of course I wasIn our investigations, you may not always agree with me, but at least you respect the journey. And if you want to continue working with them, I won’t hold it against you.”  **I just pouted a little because he’s so genuine right here.**

She may well be the first agent in a very long time to treat him and the work they do with respect. He wants her to know he appreciates that. He may also be adding a little plea to stay with that gesture. But unbeknownst to Mulder, Scully’s already chosen her side, and she’s wondering what evidence her partner has to back up his theory. sunflower stairsI also love that he’s got that bag of sunflower seeds. I can just picture Scully waiting patiently at the vending machine with him… because they’re about to share them.

partners who nom together stay together

partners who nom together stay together

Meanwhile, this lonely dude is about to have his liver eaten. Let this be a public service message to the dangers of not having blinds or curtains drawn at night. The mutants can see you!
scary windows


solve your case

Mulder and Scully run into Colton the next day at the crime scene. Part of me wishes Scully hadn’t stopped Colton from attempting to block Mulder — what would Mulder have done? I NEED to see that. The other part of me wants to fist-bump her for taking the opportunity to dress this egotist down. “A report of you obstructing another officer’s investigation might stick out on your personnel file.” There is a slight dose of venom in this comment, and Colton doesn’t miss it.

the victims side

“Look Dana, who’s side are you on?” “The victims.”

Boom. Seven hells, we don’t deserve Dana Scully.

How do we learn about the present? We look to the past. Why are Mulder and Scully our OTP? Because they were doing this on their third case together:

gazing 6

Gazing Tally: 5

gazing 5

These two…who sits this close together??

They leave to meet with the original investigator of Tooms’ murders. He makes it clear that he believes Tooms is the manifestation of evil. Another nugget: Arthur Dales was not the first old man to try and tell Mulder that the cure for what ails him lies in baseball. “I could go home, pitch a few baseballs to my kid and never give it a second thought. You gotta be able to do that. You’d go crazy, right?” 

old men and baseball

What is it with sweet old men and baseball advice for Mulder?

He gives them the address for Tooms’ apartment. Who doesn’t love this shot?

door entranceThey find a hole in the wall, which Scully has no problem climbing into first. Go, girl! Before them lies the entrance to a mutant’s bile and newspaper nest of disgustingness. He hibernates in there for 30 years, y’all. GROSS. And Mulder just had to touch it.

cool exterior

“Is there any way I can get it off my fingers quickly without betraying my cool exterior?”

Mulder goes on to theorize that Tooms is a genetic mutant who needs 5 human livers to provide sustenance to hibernate for 30 years. Scully is okay with this. Wait…what? I guess a doctor can go with genetic freak before alien abduction. In any case, Tooms steals her necklace and plans to put her liver on the menu for the evening.

Meanwhile, Colton calls off the surveillance on Tooms’ apartment and we get this beautiful ending to their friendship. Love her.

“Then I can’t wait ’till you fall off and land on your ass.”

Scully goes home to take a bubble bath in her absolutely wonderful claw foot tub. I’ve always wanted one! I secretly love her bathroom. All of it. I’m just picturing how this layout works during all the unseen action in season 7………. shut up. Just look around! You’re thinking about it now too! I’m not sorry. 

bathroom appreciation apartment layout

Tooms attacks Scully, and she holds her own. Look, she’s a BAMF, I can’t say it enough.

tooms grabsMulder arrives in the nick of time, bursting through the door with what I think is our first Scully’s-in-mortal-peril “Sculllay!” Right? I don’t think he did this in the pilot. Correct me if I’m wrong. Regardless, Go Team. One on one, I’m not sure either of them would have been enough for slippery little Eugene Victor Tooms. Together, though, enough said.

tag team 1 tag team 2

You didn’t really think I’d leave the episode without this one, did you? My little heart still lurches whenever I see it.

Arm Carress

This is one of my all-time favorite episodes for so many different reasons. More than anything, this episode is where I believe Mulder and Scully truly become partners and the seeds of friendship are starting to take root.

Now about those ties…

Mulder catches a lot of flak for his necktie designs, and he’ll grace us with some pretty bads ties soon, but Colton’s are just terrible.

So, Mulder, my dear, take solace in knowing that this guy can no longer count Dana Scully as a friend and that he has the WORST ties of the episode.

worst tie contender #2

worst tie. Scully concurs.

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Season 1, Episode 2 “Deep Throat”

Mulder: “Tell me I’m crazy.”

Scully: “Mulder, you’re crazy.”

Our second episode of the season finds us in the Spud State with Mulder looking to the sky and Scully shaking her head. This marks our second plunge into what will become the mythology of the show and also our introduction to the first of Mulder’s informants, the mysterious and grandfatherly “Deep Throat.”


Another first: Opening credits with that infamous theme. “Dooo doo doo doo dooo doooo!

hello my dear lock of hair

hello my dear lock of hair

Mulder asks Scully to meet him in a bar to show her a case he’s found. How I wish we had a deleted scene of that request! We’re given a rare glimpse of these two out and about in society and another opportunity to once again appreciate Dana Scully in 90’s spectacles.

scully bar

 Oh, and this wonderful little invasion of personal space.

MulderandScullyEnteraBar

These two get a table, and though Scully puts up some resistance, Mulder has that lone lock of hair and she’s begun mentally prepping for that flight to Idaho.

mulder bar lock of hair

He also meets with his first informant in a locked men’s restroom. Like you do. Mulder ignores the warning to “leave the case alone.” I’d argue hearing that only fans the flames of curiosity for him.

It's nice to meet you, Deep Throat

It’s nice to meet you, Deep Throat


While Mulder goes home to cook in his adorable little kitchen, Scully does some microfiche research. (Yes, I  had to look that up. I vaguely remember seeing one of those viewers in my elementary school library. I think. )

mulder cooking

vlcsnap-2015-07-06-22h23m39s645

**omg, this is about UFOs**

**omg, this is about UFOs**


Welcome to the Budahas house. There’s something going on with this porch. It’s made Mulder so flirty!

Knock at door

check those eyebrows. **adorbs**

Guiding Hand Tally: 3

Guiding Hand Tally: 3

Our pair meets with Mrs. Budahas about her husband’s mysterious disappearance. They exchange knowing glances and then move on to meet a test pilot who has returned home.

scully looks back

*don’t think UFOs*

lock of hair look

**UFOs!**

I'm sorry, y'all! Lock of hair!

LLoH

These two….

hotel invasion 1

already invading each other’s hotel rooms

A failed attempt at meeting another military commander drops our OTP into the orbit of a “reporter” who conveniently arrives to question them. Mulder can’t resist asking where he can go to talk to a UFO enthusiast (for research purposes, of course) and Scully’s tiny fit behind him is what I’m living for right now.

UFO fit

Who else wants to go with me to this little dive bar? Anyone? I’ll buy the first round.

Now, in all fairness, Mulder is supposed to be a brilliant investigator — top of his class at Quantico, Oxford-educated,  all around bright young man. I don’t fault Scully at all for calling him a sucker. That photo is too blurry to warrant a $20 addition to a lunch tab. After watching this, I’m pretty sure I could sell him a $600 vacuum cleaner if I put a UFO sticker on it.

Scully says sucker

“Sucker!”

He does get a napkin-map to that UFO hotspot out of this, so there’s that. **This banter between them, though.**

“sucker!” *smirk*

Our agents move the investigation to the outskirts of a an airfield, and Scully couldn’t be more annoyed. She opts to stay in the car while Mulder traverses a hill armed only with a camera. Come nightfall, she’s rudely awakened by a shattered back window and her overly-excited partner.  And we get some hand-holding.

wake up you gotta see this

“Wake up! You’ve gotta see this!”

still holding

**my inner 14-year-old needs to point out that they’re still holding hands…**

watching sky with bff

**watching the air show with your BFF**

omg

The dancing lights in the sky make a dramatic exit just as Mulder and Scully see two kids running away from a helicopter. Can we take a moment to appreciate that no hilly terrain can overcome Dana Scully running in heels? The woman is my goddess from this point on.

After huddling under a tree together, Mulder and Scully decide to take the kids out for hamburgers at 5 o’clock in the morning before driving them home.  These are classy FBI agents, folks.

Hand at Back Tally: 4 It's there, I'm not crazy.

Hand at Back Tally: 4
It’s there, I’m not crazy.

ufo hamburger

baby Seth Green demonstrates the finer points of UFO flight

that lock of hair can take me home too

that lock of hair can take me home too

What follows is my favorite scene from the episode. Here’s why:

1. We get Mulder rocking out

Mulder rocks out

2. Which elicits this smile from Scully

adorable baby

adorable baby Gillian

3. Mulder’s not so thinly veiled excitement at the thought of Scully stoned

If you were stoned (Faster)

4. The fact that Scully listens to his entire theory on UFOs even though there’s no way in hell he can convince her it’s a UFO or planes built using UFO technology. She insists that just because it can’t be explained doesn’t mean she’s ready to believe they are UFOs. In fairness, her point is extremely valid. Mulder’s two photos are very weak evidence to mount everything on.  Once again, she grounds him with the reason they came out to Idaho in the first place: “It still doesn’t explain to me what happened to Colonel Budahas.” He begrudgingly nods his head — she’s right again.

“Tell me I’m crazy.”
“Mulder, you’re crazy.”


Pardon this small indulgence:

rain mini bar

“You didn’t come to raid my mini bar, did ya?”

Not today, Mulder, but she will in 5 years.

mini bar season 4

You’re welcome.                                             Sincerely, The Future


Speaking of Colonel Budahas… his wife called. She wants her old husband back. This one won’t do.

I'm Fox Mulder. I'm about to give you a man quiz complete with football and airplane trivia.

I’m Fox Mulder. I’m about to give you a man quiz complete with football and airplane trivia.

We’re gifted with banter in the street again about whether or not Colonel Budahas’ brain has been rewired.

lock of hair street 2

** just an excuse to add to my lock of hair collection, please don’t hate me **

The next scene never fails to irritate me. Why do they let these guys push them around? Why don’t they ask them to identify themselves? Come on, you two! You’re FBI agents, for crying out loud.

mib 1

mib2                   mib3

However, this injustice warrants enough reason for another hotel invasion…

hotel invasion 2

keep in mind, this is Scully’s room. Mulder seems very comfortable.

she is sitting on the same bed

and she is sitting on the same bed

They don’t take their eyes off each other throughout this entire exchange.

hotel argument hotel argument 2

Mulder believes the government has a right to protect its secrets up until the cost becomes human lives. Scully believes they have no business asking these questions. She’s ready to retreat: they have no evidence and they lost their witness. Get ready to be ditched, Dana Scully.

scully is done

She is SO done with this case.

I almost feel sorry for her when she believes he’s accepted this. She’ll have to learn the hard way.

Mulder Ditches Scully Tally: 1

Mulder Ditches Scully Tally: 1

We’ll all learn together that nothing good ever comes out of separating these two.

the little-boy-runs-away-from-home look works well on him, though

the little-boy-runs-away-from-home look works well on him, though

iconic shot

perfect running form

I need to take a moment here for David Duchovny’s running form. The man can cover some ground with those long strides! I’m not a tall runner, so I’m as much jealous as in love right here.

Meanwhile…

What exactly was Scully’s plan with this guy’s car? It doesn’t matter, she’s taking no prisoners and she’s awesome. Seth Green agrees with me.

seth agrees

This is sick, but I secretly love hostage exchanges. I have no idea why.

“Yeah, you just keep telling yourself that”

little boy lost

Poor Mulder!

weve got nothing

“We don’t know any more than when we got here.”

Mulder needs to take this out to the track.

georgetown

I LOVE this sweatshirt. So 90’s! Also…why does he have this? Would an Oxford man where another university’s colors?

Deep Throat asks Mulder the $64,000 question:

deep throat returns

“Mr. Mulder, why are those like yourself, who believe in the existence of extraterrestrial life on this earth, not dissuaded by all the evidence to the contrary?”

not entirely disuasive

“Because all the evidence to the contrary is not entirely dissuasive.”

Preach, Mulder. Preach.

Thanks for staying with me.

Mulder and Scully are The Truth.

-River T. Leaman

About Me

I teach music in Houston, Texas. I’ve got some extra time this summer, so I’m making good on a goal to do something that I’ve never done before. I’ve always wanted to try my hand at a blog, and the X Files revival was the excuse I needed to begin. If you love the show, if you’re head-over-heels for Mulder and Scully, and if you’ve always believed they’re the light in the dark places, we can be friends.

Follow me on twitter @TheRiverGambit

email me at river.t.leaman@gmail.com

– River

Season 1, Episode 1: “Pilot”

We begin with a great teaser opening in the forest. Kiddos from the class of ’89 are being found dead in the woods with mysterious marks on their backs.

Here is our first glimpse of a young Dana Scully entering FBI headquarters.

look at 24 year old (Baby!) Gillian!

look at 24 year old (Baby!) Gillian!

Scully is called into the Section Chief’s office and assigned to work with one Fox Mulder on the “X-Files.” When asked if she knows of Agent Mulder, she replies with “by reputation.” I can’t help smiling at the thought of a young Dana Scully hearing about “Spooky Mulder” while training at the FBI Academy.  I’m picturing her with a group of friends at lunch and one of them is telling the group about him. Just go with it. If they were anything like my friends, one of them would not forget to mention that although Spooky Mulder is crazy, he’s also smokin’ hot.


Scully makes her way down to the basement, and she’s greeted by the FBI’s “most unwanted.”

FBImostunwanted1She then scans his office, and we catch our first glimpse of this iconic poster:

I smile every time I see this

I smile every time I see this

Also, this happens.

Glasses appreciation.

Glasses appreciation.

And Dana Scully agrees.

Why hello, hotness.

Why hello, hotness.

firsthandshake

Scully introduces herself as ‘Dana Scully,’ but Mulder takes the liberty of calling her by her surname. This is an important moment in the beginning of their partnership. He’s treating her as an equal, right off the bat. He knows she’s been sent to report on him, but he’s going to treat her like a fellow agent and not just a beautiful woman. The FBI doesn’t deserve Fox Mulder. 

Of course, his willingness to accept her is more than likely also strongly influenced by the research he’s done on her. Before she can begin to assuage what she believes are his doubts as to her qualifications, he gets up to retrieve a copy of her senior thesis.

This girl rewrote Einstein. Respect Earned.

This girl rewrote Einstein. Respect Earned.

I need a moment here.

Mulder is posturing a little because he wants her to know that he’s looked into her background. Guys. The man dug up her senior thesis. Perhaps someone can educate me, because I was 8 years old in 1993, but this was before Google, the Patriot Act, and flash drives. I can’t even begin to imagine what he had to do in order to find that damn thing. **trying really hard not to picture Fox Mulder in a library somewhere with those adorable glasses** Anyway, not sure how he dug that up, but I think it’s hot. Then she asks if he read it:

readthesis  Scully, you can’t appreciate this yet, but I can, and you’re going to love it when you get there. Not only did he read it, he’s going to be able to recite it to you verbatim in 4 years time when the two of you are dealing with a time-traveling old dude with super blue eyes and a penchant for flash-freezing people with a needle.Here’s that moment, to give you something to look forward to:synchrony

What have we learned from this? Fox Mulder’s Memory Palace has a room with Dana Scully’s thesis on the table.

hannibal-approves

Scully’s curiosity gets the better of her and she can’t help herself when she sees that molecular formula. She’s IN.  Game on, Mulder.

 vlcsnap-2015-07-03-17h45m36s562     vlcsnap-2015-07-03-17h45m55s328

She does not back down, going toe-to-toe with him using her scientific rational and he can’t help himself — he likes it.

You're adorable, Mulder, but you don't get to knock Science.

You’re adorable, Mulder, but you don’t get to knock Science.

If I’m being honest, this first meeting is my favorite scene from this episode because it’s so iconic. They establish their differences, show respect for the other’s opinions, and  embark on their journey together.


kid on a roller coaster who wants to go again or a puppy? It's a toss-up.

kid on a roller coaster who wants to go again or a puppy? It’s a toss-up.

 vlcsnap-2015-07-03-17h58m37s140

The first car scene brings us bad Mulder jokes, sunflower seeds, and a smiling Scully. Also, I love that she catches the discrepancy in the case file, and though Mulder already knows what she tells him, he still listens to her and gives her credit for her catch.

After an electrical disturbance causes Mulder to pull over, we get one of the best WTF looks from  Scully of the entire series.

 ScullyWTF


We come to the cemetery, and we get our first of many Gazes while Scully re-reads the case file aloud to Mulder.

And even though they’ve just met, Mulder’s natural instinct is to put himself between Scully and potential harm. I’m not crazy, it’s there.

getbehindme1

Oh yeah, the body inside that coffin DOES NOT seem human. Time for Science!


First Autopsy

Mulder is so exited about this autopsy, and it’s adorable. Scully, meanwhile, is trying like hell to Science.

ScullyTryingtoScience

Scully thinks this whole thing is someone’s sick joke, but Mulder asks that they run some tests.

I want to play with that lock of hair.

“I’m not crazy, Scully. I have the same doubts you do.”

 He won her over with an appeal for Science, but I like to think that lock of hair is his wingman. I mean, I want to play with it right now.


4 am in the Hotel

Can we take a moment to appreciate that it’s after 4 am and Scully is wide awake and working this case? Or how about the fact that she redecorated the lamps with way cooler shades and that she smiles like this when Mulder knocks on her door?

vlcsnap-2015-07-03-18h16m49s046 vlcsnap-2015-07-03-18h14m44s890

She also gets mad props from me for being able to resist this:

going4arun

I mean, she’s crazy. Go for a run with this adorable man, Scully!

vlcsnap-2015-07-03-18h16m39s296


Psych Hospital

A few hours later,  we meet a comatose Billy Miles for the first time. I won’t spoil it for anyone, but we’ll be seeing more of him much later. Mulder then stresses Billy’s friend Peggy O’Dell so that Scully can see what he already suspects — that Peggy has those unidentifiable marks on her back too. Scully gets angry and walks out of the hospital.

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  lockofhairthat lock of hair though!vlcsnap-2015-07-04-17h16m03s062

This is their first cross-roads. Scully’s must know that he doesn’t entirely trust her yet, especially since the first assumption he made was that she was sent to spy on him. However, this doesn’t stop her from getting angry that he’s holding out on her. Scully asks for the truth because she’s in it to help him solve the case. She’s not thinking about her report right now. Mulder, however, is. But he won’t deny her the truth when she asks for it — he tells her he thinks the kids were abducted. She scoffs at this, asking if he honestly believes it. Rather than get angry, he asks if she has a better explanation. It’s not a challenge, because he genuinely listens to her arguments. Scully insists there has to be a rational explanation and that there is nothing to support his claim of abduction. Mulder comes at her with “nothing scientific, you mean.” They’re at a standstill. He’s on alien abduction, she’s on science.  Where can they meet in the middle?

Fellow Philes, we’ll see this again: “You’ve got two choices; one of them is wrong.”

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Mulder: “I think they went left.”

Scully: ” I don’t know why, I think they went right.”

FTF Drive Straight

I see what you did there, Chris Carter.

Or, in this first, case, “Driving Straight” = The Woods. Because Scully asked the real question: What were those kids doing out there in the forest?”

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While searching the woods, we’re graced with definitive proof that Agent Scully is a BAMF. She happens upon a strange man with a shot gun who literally has the high ground, and she still points her gun at him and tells him to drop his weapon. Fearless. vlcsnap-2015-07-04-17h18m29s109


That strange man happens to be the Sheriff, who kicks them out of the forest. They have some dirt to look over, but that’s before they lose 9 minutes in the car. Mulder’s excitement over this time loss is too cute.

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That First Hotel Scene

I love this scene for so many reasons:

1. Mulder can tell immediately from Scully’s face and tone of voice that something is wrong. Whatever initial shock he had at seeing her in his doorway with a bathrobe dissolves when he realizes she’s upset. I love him.  He cannot, however, hide his “holy shit” look when she drops her robe. Get it together quickly, Mulder. 

Distracted

2. He also can’t seem to help touching the small of her back when looking at those mosquito bites — not necessary, but I’m betting Scully can forgive him.

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3. He takes a little longer than he should to tell her that they’re mosquito bites.

TotallyMosquitoBites

4. He lets her hug him and pats her ever so awkwardly on the shoulder. His tender “you’re shaking” comment and the way he searches for her eyes nearly undoes me.

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He understands in that very moment how important it is for her to gather her composure because her she allowed him to see her vulnerability and fear. Did I mention that I love him for this?

I also like to think he makes a mental note that sounds like “we are never going to have personal space between us.” In all fairness, Scully popped that bubble first. Mulder simply spends the next 9 seasons and 2 movies making sure there is never enough space between them for a bubble ever again.

6. Here’s what I really want to know: How did they get from the table to Scully wrapped in a blanket on the bed and Mulder on the floor. How?? Does he offer her the blanket? Does he offer her the bed to lie down on? Does she just get up and go over there on her own? Does he drape it over her after she lies down? What initiates the conversation where he tells her about his sister? I NEED to know these things. Someone ask Chris Carter for me. No, just kidding. Someone ask Gillian for me. She’ll have the answer I like best.

7. These are two very different people having this conversation now. He opens up to her and she listens to all of it. She’s decided, here in this room, that she’s going to help him. Reports be damned. I love her. Oh, and this arm-touching.

ArmGrab

8.  I’d also like to point out the parallels between this episode and “The Truth.” It’s beautiful. The way he lays his head back on the bed, when he turns to look at her, the way she’s listening to him. His mission statement. Watch these scenes back to back, it’s awesome.  Unless of course you’re watching all of this for the first time — don’t you dare skip ahead. It’s worth it, I promise. See!

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Back to the Pilot…

Our hotel scene is interrupted with a phone call. Of course.

Peggy O’Dell has been found dead. We also get our first guiding hand on Scully’s back. Getting touchy, you two. And yes, I’ll be counting all of these. 

HandAtBack Mulder and Scully are told that the corpse (from the autopsy) was stolen, and they return to find their hotel burning. So, no X-rays or pictures of said corpse. Oh, and Scully’s computer is toast. It’s here that Teresa Nemman emerges from the crowd of onlookers and asks for protection. They take her with them.


In the Diner

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Lone lock of hair, how I love thee!

Teresa fears for her safety because she has the marks on her back like the other abductees. Her father and Detective Miles rush in to retrieve her.

This is probably more Gillian than Scully, but I love her instinctual reaction as either woman. So touchy, these two!

This is probably more Gillian than Scully, but I love her instinctual reaction as either woman. So touchy, these two!

Height difference. **crew begins building Gillian a box in earnest**Height difference appreciation. **crew begins building Gillian a box in earnest**

If this was a conscious effort by his hairstylist -- God bless that person.

If this was a conscious effort by his hairstylist, God bless her for that lone lock!

Mulder suggests they return to the cemetery to check those other two graves. The graves are empty.

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They have a revelation about Billy Miles and decide to return to the hospital. But not before being utterly adorable together. Look at them! Babies!

Back at the hospital, Mulder tries to distract the nurse with questions while Scully checks Billy’s feet. She also utilizes Tissues of Science!

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Mulder and Scully then try out a conversation in a hallway. Since these two can’t seem to NOT touch each other in hallways after this ever again, I think they like how they work in them. I do too.Hallwayvlcsnap-2015-07-04-22h31m27s390HallwayGaze

In case you missed it, our Gazing Tally is now at 2.

Scully was prepared to go with their conclusion that Billy Miles has been taking the kids to the forest, but Mulder has to remind her that she’ll need actual evidence for her report. For her. He’d be happy to make the conclusion and be done, but he knows that she needs it for her credibility. He’s so selfless here. Again, I love him.

They return to the woods. Billy Miles tries to take Teresa into the vortex of leaves but that crazy bright light disappears and snaps him out of his “state.” The marks on his back are gone. Everyone’s okay. Unfortunately, Scully sees none of this, but that okay, because there is more touching when Mulder goes to check on her.

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Billy Miles undergoes regression hypnosis, and I know this is a significant moment, but I just can’t with this lock of hair anymore.

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Scully’s behind the glass with the section chief, his assistant, and CSM, but she’s the last to leave the room. It’s a good thing those guys didn’t see this intense gaze, or they would have reassigned her somewhere else then and there. Her loyalties are with this man:

GlassStare

Scully delivers her report to the section chief. They expected her to fail, but she managed to save one critical piece of evidence that was in her pocket during the fire AND she’s decided to help Mulder. Obviously, the section chief has no idea he just put together the partnership of the century.

We end the episode with a phone call that begins with, “Scully, it’s me.”

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Mulder says they need to talk. Scully assures him they will — tomorrow.

Wow, that was longer than I expected! Sorry! If you’ve hung in this long, Thank you! This first episode is a joy to watch and experience again and again.  It is the beginning of one of the most beautiful friendships and relationships ever portrayed and the start of a truly special and iconic television series.

I’m sure I’ll refine my episode recaps the longer I go. I think it’s obvious sleep-deprivation was hitting me toward the end…

Thank you for your patience. Any feedback or tips ar greatly appreciated! My Deep Throat Recap is coming soon. Until then!

Mulder and Scully are the Truth.

-River T. Leaman

A Shout-Out and A MSR Shipper’s Apology

Hello All!

Before I begin, allow me this small indulgence: My blog is more than a little inspired by the gem that is TVMouse. If you haven’t read her “Times Mulder and Scully Should have Made Out This Week”, you haven’t lived yet. I’ll warn you: Don’t start reading it if you plan on doing anything else with your day. Her blog consumed me entirely for about 36 hours. I laughed out loud — literally LOLed — more times than I can count. Prepare to giggle and smile uncontrollably! Also, prepare yourself for some profound and insightful revelations from an X-Files Newbie. She gets it, y’all! Check it out here: Times Mulder and Scully Should Have Made Out

I don’t intend to copy her totally, but I like the way she formats her blogs, and I needed a place to start. I’m sure I’ll find my own path soon, but until then I adhere to the notion that imitation is the highest form of flattery, and I am a MAJOR fan of hers. You can follow her on Twitter at @theTVMouse. Did I mention she’s amazing?  Kelly, if you ever read this, know that your posts make me smile and laugh every day! Thank you for being such a gift to the X-Files community.

Here we go…

I must begin with an apology. I’m only going to say this once, so refer back to this if you start to get annoyed later. I was a HUGE MSR shipper back when I was watching the X-Files on Sunday nights during my teenage years. I was on the floor on several different occasions because of what these two did to me — I’m looking at you, seasons 4-7. I nearly broke my VCR’s rewind capabilities at the end of “The Post Modern Prometheus.”

**On the floor.**

**On the floor.**

Oh, and don’t even get me started on  “Triangle.”

**On the Floor, grinning like an idiot**

**Two feet from the TV screen, trying to remember how to breathe**

Yes, VCR. Shut up or nod your head with me because you were doing the same thing back then.

I was acutely aware of every single exchange between these two — especially the physical touching and the GAZING. For those of you who have trouble understanding this, when you wait 7 seasons for any kind of momentum toward a romance, you catch EVERYTHING because it’s the only way you can go on living until the next episode. 7 days later. Then you get on AOL forums and talk about it with the other shippers. Keep nodding your head, those of you 25 years and older.

Netflix is a damn gift, ladies and gentlemen.

All of this to say, I still catch everything between the two of them because it’s part of my X-Files viewing DNA. I can’t help myself. I know Chris Carter fought it for as long as he could, (though I still believe him to have been a closet shipper all this time) but the chemistry between David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson was not of this earth FROM THE BEGINNING — quite literally, the pilot episode. The incredible writing helped too, but let’s face it, these two are cosmically-linked. Accept it, sit back, and enjoy the ride. I am going to try and be mature about this, but if I sound like a 14 year old girl throughout many of these recaps, it’s because I never really put her to rest. She resurfaces whenever Mulder and Scully are on the screen (or in print) together. I’m sorry. I was, and am, a shipper.

**funny note: I mentioned to some of my students a while ago that I “shipped” something. They immediately responded with the equivalent of “OMG. You know what shipping is?” Apparently, they ship some YouTube people. Whatever that means.  I promptly replied, “Kids, Please. I was one of the original shippers of a TV show. We coined that phrase for you. You’re welcome.”   I was gifted with looks of utter confusion when I left them without further explanation,  but they’re not ready for Mulder and Scully. Kids today just aren’t ready.

I digress. If you’re still with me, or shaking your head at the state of education today, we can be friends. Join me in my madness, and let’s watch the X-Files together!

Mulder and Scully are the Truth.

-River T. Leaman

The X Files Global ReWatch 2015: A Catalyst for this Phile

Yesterday, July 4th, 2015, an unofficial re-watch of the entire X-Files series began with the Pilot episode. It was so much fun to participate in a live tweet along with other Philes around the world. The experience was my catalyst for this blox_files-foxg. Seriously, I haven’t slept yet. The inspiration came about after delving into some Baby Philes’/Newbies’ posts about their recent plunges into the series. Reading about their experiences was like reliving my teenage years, and in many ways, I’m jealous of their journey.  I then thought about how much fun it would be to blog as a Phile revisiting the series, and I got really excited! I feel like I’m returning to the past from the future, but I can’t change anything — I just get to relive it. And because The X-Files series was a 99% positive experience for me, reliving it will be more than a little awesome.

It’s not like I ever left — I have the entire series on DVD and Blu-Ray, and it’s cued in both Amazon and Netflix for me for days when I am in an “X-Files” kind of mood. I know it so well, and yet I still catch new things every time I watch an episode. Also, life-experiences have changed much of my perspective.

Watching Mulder and Scully as a 30 year old woman is vastly different than when I was 12-20 years old. I appreciate their relationship so much more. While I still squueee at the appropriate times, (I can’t help it — it’s an ingrained response) I react to other moments in a much more in-tune way. Case in point: I watched “Closure” last week and cried twice — David Duchovny was so good in that episode. It’s not that I wasn’t sad for the character when I first saw the episode air, it’s that I understand things better now on so many levels: what that meant for Mulder, what it means on a human level to have closure to something that has literally been your life’s mission, and Duchovny’s acting for the scene (no dialog, only his facial expression). It hit me all at once, and I had a very emotional reaction to it. That’s what I love about this show.

I’m going to try to get a re-cap in for every episode. I’ll probably have to start combining episodes once the school year starts for me again, but hopefully by then I’ll have learned more things about blogging. It’s one hell of an endeavor, but I’ll give it my best shot.

If you’re new to the series, Welcome! If you’ve been a Phile for 20 years, I feel as if we’re already friends, but it’s nice to meet you all the same. Thanks for keeping the love alive for so long! X-Philes are wonderfully passionate fans. Here’s to us!

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The X Files News is spear-heading the rewatch. You can see their calendar here: XFilesNews.com — ReWatch

Follow them on Twitter for updates and live tweets during the episodes: @XFilesNews

Also, check out the tweets from other Philes and follow them!

My Pilot Post will follow this shortly. Be gentle with me, it’s my first time. 🙂 Any tips and feedback are greatly appreciated.

Mulder and Scully are the Truth.

-River L