The X-Files: Tooms   Rewatch 
March 17, 2020 9:03 PM - Season 1, Episode 21 - Subscribe

In a sequel to the Squeeze episode, Tooms is paroled despite Mulder's objections, and Assistant Director Walter Skinner orders Scully to use more orthodox methods of investigation in her work on the X-Files.
posted by orange swan (4 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Can I just tell you, HOW MANY TIMES I watched the car scene between Mulder and Scully?

"If there's an iced tea in that might be love."
"Must be fate, Mulder. Root beer."

I was 15, had a VHS copy of this episode, didn't know what shipping was, and was OBSESSED with this episode.
posted by Aquifer at 6:44 AM on March 18, 2020 [9 favorites]

An online friend of mine describes himself as "gay except for Gillian Anderson", heh.

Even as a 100% straight woman I get her appeal. She's so beautiful it's a pleasure to look at her, and she's such a fine actress -- much better than David Duchovny, who has his strengths but is limited, especially compared to Anderson.

We get another example of the kind of disrespect Mulder deals with in this episode. The court didn't even hear him out about Tooms. I don't know why Tooms was only charged with his assault on Scully -- why weren't they building a case on the recent murders?

Doug Hutchison (Tooms) is exceptionally good at playing creepy, especially given that his character was mostly silent. And it seems that in real life, in 2011, at the age of 51, he married a 16-year-old (they recently divorced). So there's that [shudder].

In this episode we meet Walter Skinner for the first time. I've read that he auditioned twice for small roles before auditioning for Skinner and getting that role. Not getting those first two one-episode roles was probably the best thing that ever happened to him, or at least to his career, because Skinner is arguably the third most important role on the show.

That woman will never know just how fortunate she was that she was the type to try to snake her own toilet instead of just calling a plumber.

Why did Mulder's parents name him Fox? I don't believe that's ever explained.

This episode did not help my nervousness about stepping onto escalators. People make fun of me for the way I stop and watch the belt and try to time my step onto it, but it costs nothing to be careful.
posted by orange swan at 6:39 PM on March 18, 2020 [4 favorites]

It's really surprising that they went back to Tooms so quickly. Usually you wouldn't expect a returning villain like that until the second season. Did they plan that, or was it a case where they realised that a separate episode idea had a villain close enough to Tooms that they might as well just use him again?
posted by tobascodagama at 9:09 AM on March 19, 2020 [1 favorite]

After a rewatch I'm sticking to my first impression that the show was serious about plot and that wrapping up a microarc was a bit of a commitment. Although 'Young at Heart' (s01e16) might have the distinction of wrapping up an arc that started before the show.

If it was cancelled, at least they wrapped up one storyline that was started in-show.

Although I guess the concept of arcs and expectations that they be concluded might not have really been a thing and X-Files might have been a pioneer who tried to do it right from first principles.

Yes, good grief, Mitch Pileggi won the lottery and landed a role he could really devour.

iirc, he's one of the few season 1 glasses wearing people to consistently wear glasses. I guess everyone else went contacts or LASIK.

Ah, CSM. William B. Davis got the part, as someone (orange swan?) pointed out earlier in the rewatch, as an intriguing extra. Yeah, what's his deal? Lets write more about him!

The show got really lucky with the cast, and more to come in later seasons* (Nicholas Lea), and mostly made good decisions (or good in retrospect) about what direction to take. I found the balance of MotW/ joke/ mytharc episodes were fine, with certain seasons skewing a little too much into side-mytharc stuff.

*we can have the discussion about T-1000 and Anabeth Gish when it happens. I refuse to believe that was Cary Elwes. It was an alien impersonator.
posted by porpoise at 10:21 PM on March 27, 2020 [1 favorite]

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