The X-Files: The Goldberg Variation   Rewatch 
July 21, 2020 7:06 PM - Season 7, Episode 6 - Subscribe

Mulder and Scully go to Chicago to find a man who won $100,000 in a card game with mobsters, was subsequently thrown off the 29th floor of a building by the mobsters who believed he must have cheated, and then walked away unhurt.
posted by orange swan (6 comments total)
 
Featuring a cameo from a very young Shia LaBeouf!
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:20 PM on July 21 [1 favorite]


I hadn't recognized Shia LaBeouf and was surprised to see his name in the credits. He was very good in his role as Richie -- excellent really.

This episode was a lot of fun, and also had a solid emotional core, because Richie's illness and grim prognosis, and his mother's trying to cope with it all, is truly heartbreaking and you want Weems to find a way to save him. Willie Garson is so good as the most hapless luckiest man in existence. Did anyone else laugh when yet another mobster shows up to (try to) kill him, and he says wearily, "Oh, not again!" Watching those vicious mobsters die one by one by hilariously convoluted means was great. Weems really ought to work for the FBI, or with Mulder and Scully. Can you imagine what would happen to CSM with Weems on the scene?

Mulder getting squicked out when Weems popped his prosthetic eye back into its socket was a good moment.

Also, Mulder is apparently not the handiest guy, and Scully trying to suppress her amusement over his attempt to fix the sink was enjoyable.
posted by orange swan at 9:16 AM on July 22 [2 favorites]


Nice call back to "The Unnatural" when Scully says to Richie, "I like baseball too."
posted by orange swan at 1:33 PM on July 22


A nice silly episode, with an amusing touch of absurdity. I'm also nuts over Rube Goldberg Machines. Duchovny must have loved playing this one, he looked absolutely manic. Was Tea Leoni recently pregnant or something while he was filming this ep?

"He kicks down the door. WAKA! ..."

There's clearly now The Formula of Mulder positing popularized paranormal explanations, Scully either refuting them or coming up with a more mundane explanation, then the X File turns out to be something else.

This was one of the more clever approaches to The Formula; Scully got to sass Mulder back (with trivia, too!) and got to be right with a non-scientific explanation!


Yes! Garson played the role adorably. And ernestly.

He also had what looked like a 1st gen Leatherman Tool. Legit.


lol, capable-looking lady: "You've got to be stronger than me, right?" at Mulder. lol. Even if true (even technically), Mulder's not exactly practical. I'm surprised he didn't lose an eye when the handle busted loose.


*in very young/ small-body-sized children, overeating carrots can cause symptoms that superficially resemble liver failure; if they consume more beta carotene from the carrots than their body can eliminate, the orange colour builds up in their skin. It's not harmful and goes away after reducing dietary carrots.
posted by porpoise at 9:00 PM on July 22


Duchovny must have loved playing this one, he looked absolutely manic. Was Tea Leoni recently pregnant or something while he was filming this ep?

Leoni had their first child just three days after the season six finale finished filming, so I think that if his personal life affected his performance in this episode at all, it was more a matter of new parent exhaustion than "my boys can swim" ecstasy.
posted by orange swan at 5:41 PM on July 23


He was very good in his role as Richie -- excellent really.

Shia LaBeouf is good. He's always been talented. He just had a batshit insane emotionally abusive father that messed him up for a while, sadly.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:14 AM on July 28


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