The X-Files: William   Rewatch 
September 12, 2020 7:07 PM - Season 9, Episode 16 - Subscribe

A mysterious and hideously scarred man attacks Doggett in the X-Files office one night when Doggett surprises him in the act of going through the files, but when Doggett pulls his gun on him, the man claims to have seen Mulder, and to know things about the conspiracy, and about William.
posted by orange swan (3 comments total)
Noticed that Duchovny got writing credits. Directed, too. So I guess we know who's to blame.

Doggett counting pushups was cute.

The "is he/ not" was weird and confusing. Probably meant to be, but DNA tests don't lie unless their fed lies in the first place (swapping out Mulder's on-file DNA profile with Miller's earlier - which they show didn't happen).

Working with babies must be a pita, but they got this one (ones?) conditioned really well. You could follow the baby's eyes and see that it's responding to visual cues off-screen.

Interested slip, that Doggett called Reyes by her first name (at least while "at work?"). He tells Monica to stay with Scully when Miller takes a runner.

That is far too big of a needle for a baby. What's he trying to do, perform a transorbital (ice pick) lobotomy on it?!

Obligatory "I've seen my share of the hideous, of the disgusting, and the repellent. But you, sir, are the most perfect expression I will ever see of all that is vile and hateful in life."

Spender's Miller wig is reminiscent of CSM's haircut, I wonder how much purpose was put into that?

Not a huge fan of the Spender-just-ended-the-conspiracy thing.
posted by porpoise at 6:58 PM on September 14, 2020

Duchovny's not a bad director. Gillian Anderson's performance was particularly strong in this episode, and I'm inclined to think that was at least partly due to his influence. For two people who didn't get along, they certainly can work together well.

Doggett isn't the least bit macho and he's a serious guy so it was fun and cute to see him inflating his push up count for his own amusement when alone in the office.

Nice call back with Scully singing "Joy to World" to William.

Nice moment with Spender's "Don't tell me I need braces," quip, and Scully's reaction to it. It was a very Mulder-type joke, delivered in exactly the same way as Mulder would have said it, and if there was a moment when Scully wavered in her belief that the mystery man wasn't Mulder, that was it. God knows she's heard enough Mulder jokes over the years.

It was just stupid to have Spender's DNA a match with Mulder's. They'd have Spender's DNA on file and it would have matched with that. Incidentally, I still think it was so bizarre to have an FBI agent shot in the X-Files office and then never mentioned again. CSM seems to have smuggled him out of the building somehow (and how the hell would he have done that?!) and kept him captive to use as a guinea pig, but there's still the fact that he disappeared and no one seemed to register it, much less care.

Why the whole cloak and dagger act in the first place? Why wouldn't Spender just go to the X-Files team, identify himself, and explain how he could supposedly fix William? They've heard weirder. Not that I believe he could fix William that way -- it's way too facile.

I suspect they chose the big needle because it would show up better on camera.

I don't at all buy that Scully would give up William. How could she ever feel assured that the conspiracy wouldn't be able to track him down and take him from his adoptive parents? How could she feel that he would be safer with a guileless country couple than with an FBI agent who knows what threats to watch out for? It seemed more like a contrivance to free Scully up so she can get back in on the X-Files action. It was also completely unethical and irresponsible not to warn the Van De Kamps of what they were getting into -- and as we know, they do indeed wind up dead because of it.

I saw some comment somewhere that the Van De Kamps probably subscribe to Reader's Digest, and yes, yes, I bet they do.
posted by orange swan at 11:23 AM on September 16, 2020

if there was a moment when Scully wavered in her belief that the mystery man wasn't Mulder, that was it

Good eye.

I went to a friend's wedding where his estranged father showed up with friend's much younger half-brother whom he had never met. It was uncanny how closely their mannerisms resembled one anothers, like a timewarp and seeing the grade-school version of friend again even though they look rather different.

So, kudos to Chris Owens/ the direction he received.

Fully acknowledge the needle was for the camera, but it offended my sensibilities even more so than the bs hand-wavey "form of magnetite."
posted by porpoise at 12:04 PM on September 16, 2020

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