The X-Files: Improbable   Rewatch 
September 9, 2020 7:31 PM - Season 9, Episode 13 - Subscribe

While investigating a serial killer who may be using numerology to choose his victims, Reyes and Scully meet a strange man who seems to have some sort of abstruse insight into the killings.
posted by orange swan (6 comments total)
Some of the scenes were seriously, seriously batshit - but at least it seems like it was aware of that, and Burt Reynolds looked like he was having SO MUCH FUN.

The TWOP recap was a total hoot - they were riffing on the music as much as the rest of the show:
Shortly thereafter, a woman comes running out of the ladies' room, screaming for help. "There's a woman who's been murdered!" she yelps. Burt looks down at the ace of clubs in his hands. Mark Snow turns off the cha cha, cues up Dum Dum Dum Duuuuuum (# 67) and has another donut.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:54 AM on September 10, 2020 [1 favorite]

I don't think I've met a silly jokey X Files episode that I didn't like. This one is delightful enough if slowly paced.* For the jokiest ones, going all in with a metric shit-ton of bat guano is a requirement. Reynolds is a sport.

To me, it felt like a bit of an (needed?) emotional break for the actors, doing something a LOT lighter and being allowed to ham it up a little and loosen up.

The artsier camerawork is aces is perfectly complemented by the music, thanks for pointing that out EC. Mark Snow seemed to have a lot of aural fun even outside of the Reynolds scenes, too.

I aww-ed when Scully did her riff off of Monica's "I want to ask you to open your mind to something." <chef's-kiss>

Then the insanity!

Reyes' coat with the big brass nipple buttons doesn't work for me. If it was meant to inspire the teats on a sow..., er, ok? Napoleonic cut (pro: logistics, con: massive loss of life) and WW2 colours (pro: logistics, con: weapons to improve the efficiency of causing massive loss of life) doesn't exactly inspire.

In the TLG rewatch it really dawned on me how much 'The X Files' mainstreamed and mutated conspiracy theory and woo culture, and the ills it's causing today like with Pizzagate and QAnon.

2001 with Reyes' numerology (and my mom's Reiki, at that moment, and whatnot) feels so innocent.

*I regret looking up Burt Reynold's politics (once personal friend of Trump, voted for, but not a Trumpist, or at least walking it back), and even Patrick's (old school Conservative, probably hates Trumpists though). Anderson's cool. Duchovny's woke.
posted by porpoise at 8:06 PM on September 10, 2020

I didn’t love this episode, but the ending was so bizarre it made me think I’d hallucinated it, and that’s always a welcome feeling.
posted by ejs at 9:10 PM on September 11, 2020

Robert Patrick was one of the "everyone needs to sit back and relax and give the guy a chance" types in 2016. I can't find anything he's said about Trump since his election, so I don't know if he gets it now or not.

This was a silly and lightweight episode, but I can't hate on it. I mean, it has Burt Reynolds shaking his ass in the camera, and that moment when Fordyce gives Doggett an incredibly generic serial killer profile and acts like he's supposed to get looking for the guy pronto is a hoot. It also played to Reyes's strength of coming up with silly theories. And when else has the show done musical montages?

The guy who plays Mad Wayne (Ray McKinnon) has a very unfortunate-looking face. He's the kind of guy you'd hesitate to get into an elevator with, even though he's probably a perfectly normal guy. He has a very long list of credits to his name, so plainly he's made it work for him.

It's absolute nonsense that Mad Wayne would have been able to get away with killing so many women. That casino surely has security cameras everywhere.

One of the three triplets seen in one of the street scenes was someone who worked for the show in some capacity.
posted by orange swan at 5:53 PM on September 13, 2020 [1 favorite]

Anderson has always been way cool, yeah. She's also really good with comedy and didn't get many options to indulge on this show. (And she got even fewer chances to laugh, which is a shame because she has an awesome laugh.)

I think the last scene was trying to go for some kind of festival-in-Little-Italy kind of feel, like the San Gennaro festival, but there were way too few booths selling questionably-sanitary sausage and pepper sub sandwiches.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:57 AM on September 14, 2020

Ok, I do remember a jokey episode that I wasn't ok with; 'The Post-Modern Prometheus' was icky.

Ah, right. Patrick - forgot about that; other than for supporting business owners during the protests, he's clammed up about Trump since 2016. But I just discovered that he co-owns a Harley Davidson* dealership, so he's dead to me now, funny old man or no.

*HD, the most efficient way to convert gasoline into noise without the side effects of producing horsepower.
posted by porpoise at 2:49 PM on September 14, 2020

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