The X-Files: Provenance (Part 1/2)   Rewatch 
September 5, 2020 8:29 PM - Season 9, Episode 9 - Subscribe

A man on a motorbike attempts an illegal crossing of the Canada-U.S border, and it is discovered that he was an undercover FBI agent who had infiltrated a UFO cult and was carrying alien craft tracings similar to those seen in "Biogenesis". Scully, Reyes, and Doggett investigate in an effort to discover the meaning of the rubbings and the reason for the cult's alarming interest in William.
posted by orange swan (6 comments total)
Just Another Mythology Episode.

How do chunks of spacecraft keep getting hacked off and passed around? Isn't it, like, super tough and stuff?

Elwes does play Brad convincingly. Huh, he was only 39. I thought he'd have been older. Still rocking incredible hair.

The location is shown as "Alberta Province" like "Washington State" - shouldn't it be "Province of Alberta?" That's kinda bugging me a little.

I cannot believe that FBI headquarters doesn't have electronic access controls. Doggett burgling offices and desks in the middle of the night feels just a tad implausible. He gets to throw out a "Mister Follmer" later though.

Scully gets her own leather trench, and yet another horrible thing happens in Scully's apartment. The lack of immediate investigation of the shooting scene, giving up William, it all doesn't make a lick of sense except as bad plotting.

Toothpick Man's got nothing on Cigarette Smoking Man.
posted by porpoise at 5:01 PM on September 6, 2020

Heh, good quibble on the spacecraft fragments.

The mythology sucks more and more. Exploring whatever's intrinsically off with William, such as his telekinesis, would have been much more interesting than all these external threats.

Margaret Scully kept her head pretty well. The moment when she retrieves Scully's gun and hands it to her so she can dispatch Comer is pretty good. Nobody's messing with her grandbaby if she can help it.

Why didn't Scully and Reyes make sure they weren't been tailed when they went to meet the Lone Gunmen? How realistic is it that Scully would have let those jokers take care of her baby anyway?

I noticed the "Alberta Province" thing too. My guess is an American wrote that, and incorrectly assumed that Canadians style a province name just as Americans style a state name, when yes, we would either say "Province of Alberta" or more likely just "Alberta".

Loved that brown leather trench coat of Scully's. I've now counted five suede or leather jackets of Reyes's: a black leather coat, a brown leather jacket, a caramel-coloured coat, a rust red suede jacket, and an olive-coloured suede coat. They're all fabulous, but I don't know how realistic it is that an FBI agent could afford so many very expensive coats.
posted by orange swan at 5:40 PM on September 7, 2020

Great point. Grandma Marge is close enough to her daughter that she knows where the holdout weapon is, and has the wherewithal to activate it.

Activating TLG was super unbelievable; everyone and their dog knows about them. They Want to be Known. Scully is putting the crosshairs on them - bad form - but using them as a diversion would have been more Scully. Especially if she got their express permission to use them as a staked goat. They'd give it to her.

Given Reyes' continued "dorm girl" open-door mindset, I'm reading that he's from a super rich family.

Also, clothes horses can have an acquisition mania much like chemical addicts do. Fandom aside, it rather feels like the showrunners where going in an errant direction, dressing the leads in really fucking expensive clothing.

(yeah, fwiw, I have a collection of impractical shoes that I love wearing, but don't wear because of the impractabiity, which I spent far too much money on)

As I've drunkenly tried to explore, FBI agent's don't make a ton of money, but Monica is probably at least in the 80k+ USD range in 2001 with the law enforcement +25% for overtime/ on-call. If her family helps out (rent, debts), that can be pretty damned comfortable.
posted by porpoise at 8:59 PM on September 7, 2020

I'm reading that [s]he's from a super rich family.

It was mentioned in the commentary for "Existence" (the episode in which Scully has William) that Reyes's character backstory (which did not get used much in the actual text) says that she worked as a cleaner before joining the FBI. It is unlikely that a daughter of a wealthy family with family support would do that.

But otherwise, yes, Reyes does read as a rich girl. She has the casually confident air of someone who is very used to living well and having nice things, has always been safe and cared for, and has always been able to do/have whatever she pleases.
posted by orange swan at 9:58 AM on September 9, 2020

Ah, the commentary track. I recall Scully being impressed, but nothing explicit about Reyes' history in-show.

I wonder if the commentor was joking?
posted by porpoise at 5:25 PM on September 9, 2020

... as in she was a "Cleaner" who cleaned up crime scenes for the mob/ assassins to hide evidence.

But the most prosaic explanation why the principles are dressed so sharply might be that Los Angeles/ local boutique designers were vying to dress the actors with their designs for the exposure.

Huh, doing a bit of light googling to see if I could find corroborating evidence of that, apparently Monica Reyes is named after a barista that Chris Carter befriended, who subsequently wanted to open up an art gallery.
posted by porpoise at 5:40 PM on September 9, 2020

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