The X-Files: Little Green Men   Rewatch 
March 21, 2020 9:05 PM - Season 2, Episode 1 - Subscribe

The X-Files have been closed, and Mulder reassigned to surveillance while Scully teaches at Quantico. Mulder is contacted by a senator, who sends him to check out a radio telescope station in Arecibo, Puerto Rico.
posted by orange swan (2 comments total)
That abandoned equipment suddenly turning on, lighting up, and receiving a broadcast was a good moment -- very eerie and chilling.

In the pilot, when Mulder talks about Samantha's disappearance, he says, "I was twelve when it happened. My sister was eight. She just disappeared out of her bed one night. Just gone, vanished. No note, no phone calls, no evidence of anything." In this episode, in his memory, Samantha is abducted in front of him: there's a bright light, the house shakes, Samantha is floating in mid-air, and there's an alien standing in the doorway. Or was that supposed to be a dream Mulder was having rather than a memory?

A lot of surveillance work must be very dull, and it seems like a huge waste of Mulder's clearly exceptional abilities. It seems like a counterproductive move too -- if I wanted to keep an agent like Mulder away from the X-Files, I'd set him at the most challenging, fascinating work I had to offer him, not bore or humiliate him, which is only going to make him act out. I will say it is kind of hilarious that Mulder, a porn addict, feels himself so much above two guys who are into strippers.

Mulder's paranoia about being seen speaking to Scully is such nonsense and she rightly has no patience with it. She is such a good check and balance on him. There have been so many times that she's corrected his course with her logical and scientific analysis and kept him from haring off in the wrong direction.

And in this episode we meet Mulder's fish for the first time... and learn that Scully has the keys to Mulder's apartment.

Scully also retreats into oversized trenchcoats in this episode in order to hide Gillian Anderson's pregnancy. It was an unplanned pregnancy, and Anderson has said she thought "everyone was really overreacting" at the time -- they were furious, and she nearly got fired. Fortunately for both her and the show, the show's producers had the sense to see that Scully wasn't replaceable, and they worked around her pregnancy.
posted by orange swan at 4:07 PM on March 22 [1 favorite]

This episode predates a bunch of other "SETI suddenly finds something" scenes that happened in this decade, doesn't it? I feel like Independence Day at least had a scene that played out a lot like this one.
posted by tobascodagama at 11:18 AM on March 23

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