season 2, episode 16, “colony”
this two-parter with “end game” really ramps up the mythology of the show. at the beginning we have mulder’s wonderfully monotone monologue about his sister. a sign that something big is going to happen. this is no monster of the week. then we get agent mulder being brought into a hospital on a stretcher in what looks like critical condition. scully comes busting in and seems to know something that no one else knows. the doctor is treating him for hypothermia, trying to increase his body heat. scully says the cold is the only thing keeping him alive and then mulder flatlines. ok, you’ve got my attention. and the level of suspense doesn’t stop there. we have a UFO crash at sea and a doctor getting killed and bleeding green goo and some kind of contract killer on a mission.
mulder gets tipped off anonymously. someone sends him the obituaries of three doctors, identical, but no relation, all working in abortion clinics. scully has a bad feeling about it. she’s worried they are being set up. it’s happened before. that doesn’t stop mulder, obviously. he and scully investigate and involve a field agent in syracuse to assist. the field agent winds up dead at the same hand of the doctor killer from the beginning, who, we see, can shape shift. skinner gets news of the dead agent and terminates mulder’s unauthorized investigation. again, that doesn’t stop mulder…obviously. a man claiming he’s from the CIA contacts mulder and scully and tells them these doctors are wanting the agents to protect them from a bounty hunter. the agents confront one of the doctors with the CIA agent, chapel, and the doctor throws himself out of three story window. in typical fashion, scully goes to call the paramedics and misses the doctor get up from his fatal fall and run away. don’t worry though, she does get to see plenty of crazy shit later. the three agents pursue the doctor. mulder gets hit by a car and the doctor gets away. scully has a suspicious exchange with agent chapel, who let the man get away fairly easily. scully steps in some green goo right where the doctor supposedly escaped.
scully is rightly paranoid. she is the one to really see what’s going on. that chapel is not telling the truth. mulder always wants to believe so badly that he can’t see when he’s being played. that’s why working with level headed scully who questions everything works so well. but, when mulder’s passions hit high levels, him and scully tend to butt heads rather than balance each other out. they have one of these arguments that come up often in these mythology episodes. the first time i recall it is in “ebe” when she tries to tell him that the UFO photo deep throat gave him is fake. when she tells him that his passion is “so intense that sometimes it’s blinding.” again, mulder is too busy believing to question any of it. scully pleads with him to see this. “you’ll pursue the case at the expense of everything to the point of insanity and expect me to follow you.” thing is that mulder doesn’t expect her to follow him. i think he’s surprised every time that she does. surprised and grateful, because her rationalism challenges him to question what he’s so hell bent on believing. “if the pursuit of this case feels like insanity to you feel free to walk away.” he’s always wanted her to have a choice in her involvement in his life’s work. he wants her there alongside him, but he’ll never force her into that decision. and she wants to be there, but on her terms, where her voice gets heard and all logic isn’t thrown out the window. after their spat, scully shows him her shoe that came in contact with the green goo. it has been completely eaten away. he tells her to get it checked out and arrange an autopsy bay to examine the dead agent’s body. they can go from being totally at odds to calmly discussing the evidence. he knows she wants to be there in spite of his stubbornness and she knows that he wants her there, skepticism and all.
ok, enough has happened already to fill a full episode, but, no, let’s bring mulder’s freakin’ sister into the equation. mulder is called home on a family emergency where his father tells him his sister has returned. we saw her earlier with the doctor who jumped out of the window. this news completely rocks mulder’s world, and rightly so. this has been his lot in life, to find out what happened to her. she confides in him that she is in danger. a bounty hunter is after her and the others like her adoptive father. who are “what people would call alien.” this conversation makes me suspicious of her. it seems she’s feeding him all the stuff he wants to hear. evidence of aliens among us. he’s so drained by the emotion of seeing her and then hearing her story. you can see the gravity of it all is physically weighing down on him.
scully was left to investigate on her own. there are several missed communications between her and mulder. scully doesn’t need samantha’s story to distrust chapel. she finds him trashing a lab that contains some sort of embryos in tanks. she steps in another puddle of green goo. there goes another pair of shoes. (that’s a lot of extra shoes to be buying on a g-woman’s salary.) after she leaves the lab she believes she’s followed and leaves a message for mulder that she may be in danger. she knows that will incite him to contact her. he doesn’t ever want to get a message again like he did in “duane barry.” scully doesn’t wait around to hear from mulder. she attempts to lose her tail and finds four other doctors, identical to the previous ones. she arranges for them to be put in protective custody. the bounty hunter is able to get to them anyways, because he’s a goddamn shapeshifter. scully gets back to her motel and a couple of more convenient missed calls between mulder and scully lead to one of the best cliffhangers. mulder shows up at the motel just as scully gets a call from mulder. god, i bet audiences were glad they only had to wait a week to find out what happens and not a whole summer.
scully gives some mad side eye during agent chapel’s accounts.
‘here, look at my ugly shoes that got the green goo on them.’
poor mulder. his dad doesn’t let him hug him, he puts out his hand instead. mulder wasn’t kidding when he said his sister’s abduction tore the family apart.
scully totally cuts in line for the bus.
the bright white sneakers, stretch pants, and fanny pack over the jacket is so painfully nineties! although, i live for scully in a ponytail.
scully looking at that embryo sack totally echoes her looking at the alien fetus in “the erlenmeyer flask.”
“mulder” comes to her door at 11:21.
did you know? behind the scenes facts:
credits show story by david duchovny and chris carter.
s: “whatever happened to trust no one, mulder?” m: “oh, i changed it to ‘trust everyone.’ i didn’t tell you?”