The X-Files: Quagmire   Rewatch 
May 7, 2020 6:57 PM - Season 3, Episode 22 - Subscribe

Mulder, Scully, and Queequeg go to Heuvelman's Lake, Georgia, to investigate the disappearance of a U.S. Forestry Service employee.
posted by orange swan (6 comments total)
. . . and only two come back.

(Seriously, this episode is a favorite for me, mostly because of Mulder and Scully's conversation on the "island.")
posted by dlugoczaj at 7:24 AM on May 8, 2020 [2 favorites]

Queequeg, nooooooo!
posted by tobascodagama at 9:08 AM on May 8, 2020 [1 favorite]

the conversation on the rock! this episode is endlessly watchable, I must have seen it 30 times now.
posted by lefty lucky cat at 10:28 AM on May 8, 2020

. . . and only two come back.

Heh. I seriously considered putting exactly that clause in the post, but decided against it just in case there was someone going through these episodes for the first time and it spoiled the episode for them.

Poor little Queequeg, and what an awful way to lose a pet. I always get so bummed when he becomes gator food. I wish Scully had been allowed to keep him for a few seasons at least. He was so cute.

Although... according to the X-Files Wikia page for this episode:

In a 2013 "Ask Me Anything" forum on Reddit, Gillian Anderson joked (or perhaps not) that she was not sorry to see Queequeg go: "That dog killed people with its farts and it deserved to die a nasty death in the mouth of that alligator or whatever it was. Ugh. I had to shampoo it, or walk away every few seconds, because these puffs of nastiness kept happening."

This is such a classic bit of dialogue:

Mulder: Hey Scully, you think you could ever cannibalize someone? I mean if you really had to.

Scully: Well as much as the very idea is abhorrent to me, I suppose under certain conditions a living entity is practically conditioned to perform whatever extreme measures are necessary to ensure its survival. I suppose I'm no different.

Mulder: You've lost some weight recently haven't you?

Scully: [seems pleased] Well, actually I have, thanks for...[she stops abruptly, and glares at Mulder].

How was there just *one* alligator in that lake area, and why did the authorities not consider that might be the problem? Aren't their laws about destroying alligators once they're over a certain size, because then they start attacking humans? And why would Ansel Bray stand there and fucking take photos of an alligator as it approached him? Was Big Blue then responsible for at least his death/some of the murders?

Scully really can't pilot a boat.
posted by orange swan at 3:47 PM on May 8, 2020 [1 favorite]

Heh, Tyler Labine returns as 'stoner kid.'

I think they commented on how Ansel Bray was absolutely obsessed with getting evidence, I guess he was willing to give his life for it.
posted by porpoise at 7:00 PM on May 8, 2020 [1 favorite]

I have just finished reading Moby Dick for the first time. Moby Dick is specifically referenced as a literary experience Scully and her father shared, and Scully then takes it further and uses it as an analogy for Mulder's quest:

Mulder: Why did you name your dog Queequeg?
Scully: It was the name of the harpoonist in
Moby Dick. My father used to read to me from Moby Dick when I was a little girl. I called him Ahab and he called me Starbuck. So I named my dog Queequeg. It's funny... I just realized something.
Mulder: It's a bizarre name for a dog, huh?
Scully: No, how much you're like Ahab. You're so consumed by your personal vengeance against life, whether it be its inherent cruelties or mysteries, everything takes on a warped significance to fit your megalomaniacal cosmology.
Mulder: Scully, are you coming on to me?
Scully: It's the truth or a white whale. What difference does it make? I mean, both obsessions are impossible to capture, and trying to do so will only leave you dead along with everyone else you bring with you. You know Mulder, you
are Ahab.
Mulder: You know, it's interesting you should say that, because I've always wanted a peg leg. It's a boyhood thing I never grew out of. I'm not being flippant, I've given this a lot of thought. I mean, if you have a peg leg or hooks for hands then maybe it's enough to simply keep on living. You know, braving facing life with your disability. But without these things you're actually meant to make something of your life, achieve something earn a raise, wear a necktie. So if anything I'm actually the antithesis of Ahab, because if I did have a peg leg I'd quite possibly be more happy and more content not to be chasing after these creatures of the unknown.
Scully: And that's not flippant?
Mulder: No, flippant is my favourite line from
Moby Dick. 'Hell is an idea first born on an undigested apple dumpling', huh?

I definitely agree with the parallels Scully draws between Mulder and Captain Ahab. Left unsaid, of course, is that Scully is First Mate Starbuck to Mulder's Ahab, who has signed on for the voyage without sharing Ahab's obsession, and is both assisting him and trying to talk some sense into him. It makes me wonder if Moby Dick was an actual creative source for the show. Pretty cool, if so.

Also left unsaid is what I believe to be Scully's reason for choosing Queequeg over other names from the book that might have been more suitable for a dog (i.e., Pip, Flask, Perth, Ishmael)... in Moby Dick, Queequeg was a cannibal. That's fucking dark, Scully.
posted by orange swan at 10:36 AM on January 8, 2021

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