season 5, episode 7, “emily”
“emily” is the problem child of this two-part mytharc. in “christmas carol” we get a strong scully figuring out this spooky x-file ghost story. in “emily” we mostly get worried and sad scully shots as mulder is out investigating the x-file. the mythology made total sense to me in “christmas carol,” but the conclusion of it is utterly confusing to the point of being maddening.
and it all starts in the beginning. scully walking through a windy desert in a billowing dress with one of the more painful voice overs of the series. she finds the cross and her face dissolves into sand and is blown away. this grandiose imagery and bombastic script actually made me cringe. i’m cringing now just thinking about it. i really don’t want to write the rest of this review because these moments keep on coming. do i have to?
mulder is on the scene this time. testifying in a custody hearing, scully learns that mulder knew about her ova being taken from her. he tells her he should’ve declined making a statement at all if he “never wants to see her hurt or harmed in any way.” he also tells her that he kept the information from her because he thought he was protecting her. well, mulder, it’s not your job to protect her, it’s your job to have her back. there’s a difference. scully is a strong woman who does not need a man to breeze in on a white horse and come to her rescue. she needs someone who supports her and is there for her and tells her the truth no matter how hard it is for either of them to hear. he is there for her throughout the rest of the episode and gives her a bit of comfort in the end. “but that you found her and that you had the chance to love her. maybe she was meant for that, too.” he’s helping her to find meaning in yet another horrible transgression made against her. she had said she struggled to find meaning in her cancer in “detour.” he’s giving her some meaning here.
the continuity of the mythology follows the standard, for the most part. until the end when none of it makes sense and you can tell the writers were like let’s just wrap this up and never speak of it again. that’s the maddening part of it. this is a huge deal for scully and it is hardly ever mentioned again. and they just kill her off for no apparent reason. dr. calderon was an alien hybrid performing tests on emily and then he is killed by some shapeshifter aliens who then inject emily with something that no one can say was either helpful or not. well, actually they say both. what the what?? scully mostly stands around, her impeccable brows knitted in worry. she shows a little bit of the fight we know she has in her when she tells the adoption agent that the decisions she is making are “reasonable and right.” but, then the woman asks her what she plans on doing and scully’s just like i dunno. aaaaarrrgh!! it’s all for naught anyways. emily slips into a coma and scully has to watch her die. thanks for that. really. the end shot is scully finding that emily’s body has been replaced with sand covering up the last bit of evidence. scully finds her cross necklace in the sand and holds it up and closes her eyes, her face awash with unspeakable pain. this is the last episode of the year before the christmas hiatus. try to have a happy holiday! fuck.
mulder’s mr. potato head. love love love it!
that musical cue is back. i like it.
emily’s nose flair while the green ooze poisons the nurse. well done, kid.
scully’s reaction to the sound of the MRI machine is so good. gillian is so good despite what she was given to work with in this episode.
when the alien posing as calderon injects emily, there is a push in to his face and his mouth kind of twitches into a hint of a sinister smile which i thought was over the top. these alien hybrid bounty hunters are like robots with no emotion. and that close up doesn’t add to anything.
the special effect of emily’s veins is really cool.
although i like how the shot of mulder holding up the fetus echoes scully holding it in “the erlenmeyer flask,” i feel it’s becoming overused.
is what mulder takes from the senior center different from what he takes in “memento mori?” and does he have refrigerated pockets?
the cut from scully laying next to emily to the mother and child stained glass was nice. and painful.
mulder brings flowers. oh my god, my heart.
mulder’s worried face when he first sees her with emily and then when she goes to open the caskett shows how much love he has for her and how much it pains him to see her hurting.
mistaken for a married couple. “are you two the parents?”
mulder attacks calderon unable to control his rage over the “medical rape” of scully.
mulder tells scully he’ll stay with her and puts his hand on her back and shoulder.
m: “i’ll be back.”
m: “i think you might have a shot here, frohike.”