The X-Files: Sleepless   Rewatch 
March 24, 2020 9:04 PM - Season 2, Episode 4 - Subscribe

Mulder receives a marked copy of a newspaper and a cassette recording that point him to the case of a New York City sleep specialist who had called 911 to report a fire outside his apartment, only for the firefighters to find upon their arrival that there was neither a fire nor signs of a fire on the scene, just the doctor, dead and with a discharged fire extinguisher nearby. Mulder asks to be assigned to the case and finds himself working it in partnership with Agent Alex Krycek.
posted by orange swan (4 comments total)
Tony Todd is so good.

There's so much to say about the central concept of this episode, too. The US government in Vietnam was turning ordinary men into killers and sending them out to commit atrocities. The sleep experiment in this episode is only a *slightly* heightened version of reality. It's just that in real life we pumped soldiers (mostly pilots, I think?) full of amphetamines instead of cutting into their brains.
posted by tobascodagama at 8:27 AM on March 25, 2020 [2 favorites]

I see Alex Krycek has recovered from his foray into amore with Marty the Kindred member on rumspringa, so that's good. I didn't remember that we find out Krycek is part of the conspiracy right away -- I thought he was more ambiguous at first. At any rate, this at least means he deserves Mulder's attempts to ditch him like a bad date.

This was a pretty solid episode. The X-Files uses a "damaged Vietnam vet with supernatural powers out for justice" premise at least one other time that I recall, but it is a good one. Those poor men were so terribly haunted, and Tony "Candyman" Todd makes a terrifying retributive figure. Though you'd think he'd be even more out to get the sleep specialist who experimented on his unit than the men he fought alongside, and thus would have wanted him to face a firing squad of blood-spattered Vietnamese civilians as well, but I suppose that would have been giving too much of the plot away too soon.

Having Scully mostly do autopsies really came in handy for hiding Gillian Anderson's midriff for the first part of this season -- those dead bodies provide perfect cover.
posted by orange swan at 1:05 PM on March 25, 2020 [3 favorites]

Oh, and can I just say I hate what they did with David Duchovny's hair this season? It's like the entire top of his head is one big cowlick.
posted by orange swan at 3:10 PM on March 25, 2020 [1 favorite]

The 90's were terrible for suits and hair.

Mulder's s01 hair was a throwback to a classic style, we have a young handsome jr bizdev guy who has exactly the same hair, glasses, and 5 o'clock shadow as s01e01 Mulder.

Or maybe they poofed it up to show up Skinner?

Look at Krycek's - classic throwback that would look just fine today. Maybe a 1 to 2 fade on the sides instead of the extra pomade.

Mulder : Krycek - different sides, same coin, but wow how their futures will diverge. Had forgotten how initially antipathic both Mulder and Scully were towards K.

Yes wow Tony Todd, he's been in everything (I had no idea he was Kurn in the Star Treks) - nice to see an early iteration/ performance of his primary typed character.

Great mytharc/ MoTW hybrid episode.

Scully willing to drop everything - and Mulder taking advantage of that without even thinking - gets me in the feels.
posted by porpoise at 5:54 PM on March 29, 2020

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