harsens_rob (harsens_rob) wrote,
harsens_rob
harsens_rob

X-Files review: Deep Throat (never use that code name)




X-Files

S1, E1 (following 'Pilot')

Deep Throat

Blurb: A test pilot who may have been flying aircraft made with alien technology disappears, and Mulder and Scully must defy their own government to find the truth.

Spoilers will be spoiled






Scene 01: We open outside of a home in Southwest Idaho, near Ellens Air Base.

An MP tactical team rushes from offscreen toward the sedate looking home. The homeowner arrives and is let through a (low scale) blockade around her home. The commander tells her that her husband has commandeered a vehicle and is believed to be armed. He is apparently acting unusual.


Scene 02: The tactical squad breaks into the home and begins their sweep, while wife pleads to be able to speak with her husband. The tactical team finds the man they're looking for, but reports down that they need a medical unit. The man is sitting in a ball in the corner and has a mysterious, full body rash or burn covering his shaking form.



Opening Titles

Scene 03: Back in Washington, DC we join Agent Scully in a bar, where she is glancing at her watch. Her expected companion is Mulder who reports that he has something to show to her that he couldn't do so in Norfolk. But, also at the bar is a mysterious stranger who seems to be keeping tabs on one, the other, or both of our agents.


Scene 04: After Mulder leads Scully to a table, he shares a file with her. Fox gives Dana the basic outlines of our opening scenes. We find out it has been four months since then. The man in our opener with the burn/rash was a test pilot at the air base. But a month ago, his wife filed a kidnapping report to the FBI because the Army hasn't allowed her any contact whatsoever with her husband since he was taken "for treatment". Worse than just a run-around, she's found that the military won't comment on her husband at all.

Mulder shares that there are six cases from this one air base of pilots that have suddenly gone missing. Dana retorts that there is documentation that they were shot down due to unauthorized excursions into Russian airspace (How would she just happen to have this factoid?). Since this isn't what has happened to their current missing pilot, however, Fox decides they're going to Idaho....


Scene 05: Fox has excused himself to the men's room. As he is washing up at the sink, he spots someone in the mirror behind him. It is the mysterious man at the bar. He warns Mulder to leave the Idaho case alone. The Mysterious Deep Throat warns Agent Mulder that the military will not tolerate an investigation by the FBI in this case and that he shall be placing himself and his partner at unnecessary risk if he doesn't drop the case and move on.

He will not identify himself, or who he works for, but tells Mulder that there is much work that he has to do.

The Mysterious Deep Throat is able to slip away when Mulder's following is blocked by a big dude in need of the john.


Scene 06: Later at FBI HQ, Scully is in the file room. She's researching Ellens Air Base and finds an article about the site being a test center for slealth technology. Scully calls Mulder at his apartment.


Scene 07: Dana's a bit annoyed as the article from some goof is suggesting that Ellens is involved in advanced alien technology research, which Dana doesn't hold to. She tries to find out from Fox if he's just leading her on one of his wild-alien-goosechases, but Fox has noted a severe and mysterious crackling in the line.

Fox goes and peeks out of his window and is further put on edge by a van with a man in the driver's seat apparently watching his apartment. He immediately suspects the static in the line was due to bugging of his phone and tells Scully that they'll talk about it on the flight out to Idaho.


Commentary: There hasn't been much to comment on in these opening scenes. They're doing their job, but they're a bit slow made even more so by David's near-monotone delivery. I do want to mention that this "apartment phone might be bugged" introduction is just badly put together. The line noise is way too clumsy for a shadowy group spying on Fox and the delivery van where it shouldn't be parked directly under his window where it's easy to spot the out of place man sitting there looking up at him is huge spy-fail.

Now, it is possible that these events are not actually what Fox is afraid they are. Mulder could just as easily be a bit paranoid after his run in with Mysterious Deep Throat.

But, if it was meant to be ambiguous, it is also clumsily done in that circumstance. And, also, there is no way to make 'Deep Throat' into anything except an immediate porn reference. Having Deep Throat meet Fox Mulder alone in the men's room did not help one whit. I do know the historical significance of the code word, "Deep Throat"... but there had to be a better name for the mysterious stranger.



Scene 08: We get an (unnecessary) shot of their plane landing in Idaho.


Scene 09: Mulder and Scully go knocking on Mrs. Budahas' door. She lets them in and fills the agents in on the recent history of her husband. Her tale includes mysterious rashes under his arms, bouts of anger that seemed to come up from nowhere, shaking of his whole body and sprinkling fish food flakes over his dinner.

Mrs. Budahas can't even confirm what state her husband is currently in. She directs them to another air force couple, in which the husband had gone a little crazy, but he's been returned home.


Scene 10: We see new guy pluck a hair from his head to use on a fly fishing lure. Inside the kitchen looking out at him is his wife and Agent Scully. The wife tells Dana he's been this way for the past two years.



We find out that Mulder and Mrs. Budahas are also there. Wife tells them that the military has been very good to her and her husband and reminds them that their spouses volunteered to work as test pilots, a uniquely high stress position. She chides Mrs. Budahas for bringing the FBI into the military family's issues.


Scene 11: The agents wrap up their visit for the moment. Mrs. Budahas gives them the base numbers that she has, and never received a satisfactory response through. Fox asks Scully about what she saw, and she reports that fly fisher guy is showing classic signs of an extreme stress syndrome.

Scully argues that the men could be part of an open-secret project for flying sub-orbital spying missions and these two simply cracked under the pressure, but Fox (as is true about everything) is skeptical about this mundane explanation. He points to the Colonel's wall of photos, including a Presidential medal. He rejects a simple stress related washout from any such program, no matter how much strain those pilots are under.


Scene 12: At the motel room, Fox and Dana have had about as much luck going through official communications channels for the base as Mrs. Budahas. Scully does get a name of a Colonel Kissel who can meet with them sometime over a week later.


Scene 13: Kissel's address is in the phone book, however, and our agents aren't about to sit around on their hands waiting. They show up outside his door and just wait for him to arrive home.

Kissel orders them off his property.

Our agents are then intercepted by a local reporter, who is also trying to dig up some dirt in the mysterious case of Budahas and his seeming incommunicado-ness. To which, Mulder has about the same response as Kissel had to Fox and Dana.

But, he is civil enough to get the location of the local UFO-nut coffee shop....


Scene 14: Mulder and Scully are finishing their dinner at "The Flying Saucer" when a supersonic jet goes over, rattling the glassware. The waitress mentions that the jet flyers all think they're more amazing than they are. Behind her, Mulder spots some saucer photos and asks about them. Waitress mentions that a large one, triangular in shape was one she took personally from her back porch. She states it was quiet as a hummingbird and just hovering. Mulder ends up purchasing a copy of it for $20 to Scully's dismay.


Commentary: And, David is looking particularly cute when he's pulling a face:




Scene 15: When he leaves the diner, he finds Scully consulting an area map. Scully tells him that the air base isn't even on her USGS map, which is weird. But, he's charmed that waitress that he bought a copy of her photo from out of a handdrawn map to the base.


Commentary: Which seems a bit unnecessary... how hard could it be to locate an air base?? Especially one that is supposed to be performing secret flights... surely everybody in the area knows where its borders are in order to stay out of trouble with the military police for trespassing on restricted land?


Anyway, off they go.


Scene 16: Mulder and Scully drive up a road paralleling the base, where a fence keeps them outside. Fox goes up a hill with a pair of binoculars, which Scully finds ridiculous and pointless. She mentions how silly he's going to look when she has to file her field report, but he ignores her. (As he makes a habit of doing, whenever she gets into one of her doubting-Thomas snits.)


Commentary: So, you'd think that a fence designed to keep trespassers out of a restricted zone where experimental aircraft are being tested would be reinforced and electrified. No. No, it would not.


Scene 17: Later that night, Scully has dozed off in the passenger seat. We see her sunglasses resting on the dashboard as they begin to shake and rattle. She's woken up by the vibrations and there is a brief bright light. The rear window scares the bejeezus outta her by shattering. In the background, Mulder comes racing down the hill, where he's been apparently content to just sit for hours not being able to even see the base from his vantage point.

He excitedly pulls her from the car and races with her back up the hill.


Scene 18: Mulder shows her two lights in the sky, performing maneuvers that no craft they're familiar with could pull off. He tells her with a grin that they've been dogfighting around each other for the past half hour. Scully suggests lasers being bounced off of the cloud cover, but then the two lights pull straight up with a definite thunder, breaking the sound barrier. Scully is amazed, as they're definitely not just lights.

Mulder points out another one coming in their direction....


Commentary: And, alas, the *cough*special effects*cough* are extremely... um... limited. They're literally CGI-light spots in the background.


The third light, however, turns out to be a helicoptor, rather than a bargain-basement effect. Mulder and Scully see two teens rushing through the bushes, as the coptor shines a spotlight around, looking for the intruders.


Commentary: Yeah, I really find this sort of trope... the highly secured base, which is easily and repeatedly entered... to be irritating. The military, whether doing something UFO related or just testing new jet designs, would surely have perimeter guards patrolling while these flights are going on. The premise that these craft would even be tested when the base is basically on the outskirts of a town also seems highly suspect and dubious. And since I haven't had a lot to talk about because there hasn't been much going on up until now, let me also state that this episode (only the first following the pilot) is really suffering a pacing issue. The story is just slow, and without focusing on the more interesting aspects such as the pilot whose return has come with a breakdown. We're just following our agents wandering about town among the locals, but not actually learning anything useful or interesting to push forward the mystery.


So, Mulder yells out a "Hey", causing the kids to flee, with our agents running down the hill after them and the coptor spotlighting from above.


Scene 19: Mulder and Scully chase after the teens, AND DRAW THEIR GUNS?! That seems a bit extreme.

Our wacky teens stop and turn around with their hands up.


Commentary: And, yep, that is Seth Green wearing atrocious hair. I have nothing further to say. He cannot hide his cuteness, but he's trying really hard. And, his character is annoying, so I'm not gonna enjoy this guest spot.


Teen Girl insists they didn't do anything (well, except that trespassing on restricted air force property and spying on 'secret' test flights). As the chopper gets closer, Mulder encourages them to hide with he and Scully until the whirly-bird goes away.


Scene 20: Mulder takes them to the diner to eat and Scully questions them about what they were doing out at the base. As they talk, they're spied upon.

Seth claims that sometimes when he and his girlfriend are watching the "airshow", the crafts will suddenly stop in midair and hover nearly silently above the ground. Mulder brings out the picture that he bought off "The Flying Saucer" waitress and Seth confirms that is what the silent hoverers look like. He also points out that a lot of people in town think the weird lights and stuff are UFOs, but he's pretty sure they're just advanced technology the air force is testing out (practically on top of town... brilliant).


Scene 21: Fox and Dana take Seth and girlfriend back home after dawn. They then discuss the case with Scully not understanding how he can so easily buy into Seth's eyewitness "testimony" when it is obvious that he and girlfriend are potheads. Scully goes down the list of reasons why nothing reported adds up to UFOs, including Mulder's suggestion that Ellens Air Base is allegedly one of the bases to which parts from the Roswell crash were shipped. He also points out that he's not suggesting aliens per se, this time out, but that he is suggesting that the base is testing aircraft that incorporates alien technology.

Dana tells him even if that were true, it still wouldn't explain why Budahas has been disappeared (Yay, back to the actual mystery!).


Scene 22: When they return to their motel, Scully checks the front desk for messages. She finds one from Mrs. Budahas that her husband returned home the evening before.


Scene 23: Our agents immediately drive over to the Budahas residence for an explanation of where the colonel has been. When Mrs. Budahas answers the door, she's in tears and she ushers them inside. She leads them to a living room, where the colonel sits quietly. She then insists that the man sitting there is not her husband.

He's putting together a model and asks after who their visitors are. Mulder sees a photo of Colonel Budahas and it appears to be the same man sitting there now.


Scene 24: As we come back from break, Mrs. Budahas tearily insists again that the man in her living room isn't her husband. Mulder asks a few basic biographical questions, which the colonel answers correctly as backed up by Mrs. Budahas, despite her continuing to tell them that he isn't who he looks like. When Fox asks him a technical question about an aircraft maneuver, the colonel chokes up and seems unable to answer.

The colonel reports he can't remember anything about flying and this sends Mrs. Budahas into near hysterics, confirming for her that he isn't the man he portends - although, there is the impression that he is just suffering a form of amnesia.


Scene 25: Agent Mulder practically storms out the front door, and when Scully questions him he states emphatically that he believes the colonel has been a victim of a mindwipe.

Scully is skeptical, simply because the brain doesn't work like a computer where you can edit selective files, but Mulder points out the maneuvering light show from the night before as things that shouldn't be possible. He reports that Budahas should have been able to answer his question, but it is like the information simply wasn't there.


Commentary: In these very early episodes, Fox' portrayal is a problem for scenes like this one. Of course, we know Mulder is on the right tract simply because of the 4th wall and the premise of the show. But Fox, as I mentioned in the Pilot review, jumps to wild-ass conclusions that sounds more like he's just grabbing the first idea that pops in his head and runs with it. The fact that 'brain trauma' because Budahas may have been a pilot on one of the experimental craft (and its mentioned that he's been missing for four months and the colonel states he was in hospital during this time) they saw the night before would be a logical proposition for Mulder to make considering his belief in the grand conspiracies of the government. The insane leap to selective brain wiping isn't. This is especially the case because Dana has sensibly just said that the brain doesn't store information the way that Mulder is suggesting it could simply be deleted; instead of having Fox reconsider and suggest a traumatic brain injury or even brainwashing, he insists on his first impulse as the only rational explanation... that despite the brain not storing memories that would make it convenient to wipe out selective memories and knowledge, alien technology is allowing the government to do it anyway.

And, instead of at least paying lip service to Scully for another explanation that would explain such selective memories not existing/being inaccessible, he's entirely over the top about the "government is physically brain wiping evidence to cover their tracks" explanation. He DOES sound like a conspiracy nut. He DOES sound irrational, just as his bosses have been accusing him of being.

This is just too early in the series for Mulder to be dropping the full-crazy on a partner who he knows has been assigned, at least in the view of those above him, to completely debunk him and close the X-Files work down. You'd think that this would make him more circumspect until we have a season under our belt and he knows that he can implicitly trust Dana, but no... he's more than ready to make her question his sanity at every turn and refuse/not recognize any opportunity she's extending for him to backpedal just a little bit, so he doesn't sound like he's on the verge of a breakdown, himself.



Scene 26: In the car, Scully asks Mulder that even if his wild theory were correct, why would the Air Force do such as thing. Mulder believes it is about information security, while Scully still wonders why Budahas couldn't have just had a nervous breakdown and subsequent memory loss tied to that breakdown.

Mulder suggests that the pilots aren't able to physiologically handle the stresses that are coming with pulling the sort of high-G maneuvers they witnessed the light-spots performing... and that this is causing them brain damage....


Commentary: ... THERE! THIS is the explanation I just spent all that time suggesting should have been there in the prior scene. It is a far more logical explanation than that the government, using alien technology, has been able to alter the brain of their pilots to delete only information pertaining to their piloting skills (but apparently aren't exact enough to only edit memories of the advanced technology test flights while leaving the rest of their memories and skills intact). So, why is this scene here, instead of in the prior, until such time as Mulder has reason to believe that there may be a deliberate brainwipe program in existence? Why did they make Fox so OTT in insisting on his sinister brain-reprogramming theory, if they were going to turn around and suggest this more logical and sensible explanation, anyway? And why wasn't Dana the one to suggest this alternate scenario to counter Fox' more out-there theory if they were going to leave the "government is evil" rant by Mulder intact in the episode?


Our agents drive is suddenly interrupted by some other government vehicles cutting them off and forcing Mulder to slam on his breaks (as Dana Scully transforms into a woman we don't know, before changing back into Scully).











I is Scully?


They are ordered out of their car and their stating they're Federal agents fall on deaf ears. The car is ransacked and everything pertaining to their case are taken or destroyed. They are then ordered back into their vehicle, where the lead thug informs them they'll be escorted to their motel room where they will pack their belongings and leave immediately. He is not making a suggestion.


Scene 27: With them returning to their motel, they've both changed into casual clothes. Scully then calls a Bureau contact to run the plate of one of the thugmobiles. She finds that it is an unregistered, bogus license plate.

Mulder now confides in Scully that he believes the helicoptor wasn't chasing out those kids from the base, but had been sent to run them out of the area. He shares with her the meeting with Deep Throat (though, he doesn't know him by that name yet... he's just some stranger at the bar, still) and that he was specifically warned to not get involved in this case. He suggests that someone knew before they even arrived that they'd be here and that Budahas was returned as a distraction to get them to leave quietly.

They argue about what to do next and Fox appears to agree with Scully that there isn't anything else to do but leave, since their kidnap victim isn't still missing. He tells her he's going to catch a shower and pack and then they'll be on their way.


Scene 28: Which of course, is total bullshit. Moments later, Scully hears their car starting and rushes out into the parking lot to watch Mulder tear out on his own.


Scene 29: Back at the base, Fox has the teens lead him to a hole in the fence.


Scene 30: He hikes across the restricted grounds of the air base, and sticking to the high weeds... (which you would think wouldn't be allowed to grow wild for just this reason, especially since the fence is so shoddy and there aren't any patrols going on, but no, you'd be mistaken).

He hunkers down until nightfall...


Scene 31: ... when he creeps up on the air base itself and walks out onto a runway in full view of anyone who happens to be glancing his way (WHERE IS FUCKING SECURITY?!).

As he stands in the open, he sees a light approaching over the airfield, with nothing louder than a whispering and stands there gawking at it.



The craft hovers over him, before flipping a bright spotlight on him (because he's a stupid ass). The craft then takes off... again without any obvious engine noises. But, behind him, very earthly MP vehicles come racing down the airstrip with their lights going. He takes off running.

But, not for those high weeds... no, he runs down the center of the airstrip, because he thinks he can outrun a car. Not being bionic, this doesn't work. Fox finds himself taken into custody.


Commentary: I hate the last three scenes for the utter-fucking-logic/bad-scripting-FAIL.


Scene 32: Fox is strapped down to a gurney and pumped full of drugs and gassed.


Commentary: Presumably, we're finding out what happened to our two pilots and how they lost their memories of their work for the Air Force at Ellens.


Scene 33: Back at the motel, Scully finds her efforts to call out of the town to the FBI stymied. She finds that none of the phones in the area are working.


Commentary: Nicely, they have the desk clerk specifically tell her that the townies generally believe the military interferes in communications, resulting in 'unreliable' phone service. It doesn't sound like he necessarily believes this, but that is a nice touch. It does bother me how often Dana leaves her gun behind sitting out on a table, though. I don't know for sure, but aren't agents required to keep the security of their firearm in mind at all times, no matter what else is going on? In fact, I thought that they were required to carry their gun, but if not, surely it's expected to be locked away when not on their person?

I mention it, because the camera deliberately focuses on her firearm left behind on the table when she goes to the office to try their phone.



Scene 34: Meanwhile, back at the air field, Mulder is transferred to a flight hangar but is still heavily drugged (as the camera work/POV makes clear). He gets glimpses of things going on, including the shape of one of the triangular craft parked behind some plastic sheeting... but how much of this he'll recall in an hour is up in the air.


Scene 35: Scully returns to her room, where she finds "Reporter Guy" leaving. She reaches for her lower back for her sidearm, but of course, we've seen that she didn't carry it out with her. He claims when he knocked, the door was open. She tells him about the lobby and he implies that the phones being down isn't unusual. From a car nearby, we hear someone calling for Red Bird... which we also saw when somebody was spying on Mulder, Scully and the teens in the diner earlier.

Since Dana isn't a complete idiot, she runs for his car and locks herself in it, no longer buying the "local reporter" cover. She goes to start the car, but the keys aren't there. She does find his security badge and gun though, supporting that he's airfield security and not a reporter. This doesn't help her much when he uses a fire extinguisher to break the side window.


Commentary: Which he sure did retrieve fast... did he just have that in his jacket, or something??


And, of course, she drops the gun too. (Huh? Trained Agent? Years experience? Wha? I know not of what you speak.)

Fake-reporter tries to grab her, but she claws him in the face. By the time he pulls himself together, Dana has retrieved security-guy's gun and is holding it in his face.

She orders him to tell her who he is (uhm... air base security... y'know, like the badge said), when the teens (very conveniently) moped-ed up. Seth and Girlfriend tell Scully that they left Mulder at Ellens and waited for him to return, but he didn't. Dana orders security-agent-guy to get on the walkie-talkie and find out what has happened to her partner. He refuses at first, but then Scully lays on him that every reporter in the country will be out there to dig into the experimental aircraft out at Ellens, if he doesn't do what she tells him.


Commentary: Considering the circumstance, I would have shot him in the calf to show how not-playing I was, but she has more patience than I. And, just how is everything going to be covered up successfully with this entire botch-up?! Hmmm... I'm sensing an unconvincing ending coming.


Scene 36: Back at the hangar, Mulder is still undergoing some dark procedure or another.


Scene 37: Back with agent-guy, he's being held at gunpoint and Scully is forcing him to drive to, presumably, the air base -- which seems unwise to me as far as Dana's strategy goes.

An exchange has apparently been hastily arranged (off screen) because a military jeep delivers Mulder to the front gate. He's looking a bit hungover, but he's able to walk out. She orders agent-guy out of the car at gunpoint (which the military police allow, without even pointing their weapons at the armed and agitated woman?) and has Mulder get in.

Before walking away, agent-guy tells them that they're the ones who have breached national security in this circumstance and that they've been the ones to act inappropriately. He does so about as smugly as he can, considering that he was so utterly incompetent in dealing with Dana.


Scene 38: Racing away, Scully checks on Mulder's condition. He reports that he thinks he's okay (but looking like death-warmed-over), but he can't remember how he arrived at the base, suggesting that the memory wipe procedure was successful with him as well.


Scene 39: Scully returns with Mulder to the Budahas home. The Mrs. refuses them entry and insists that her husband is much better now, though his line in the background suggests this may not be so... or that there has been a line of visitors already to the home. One would presume the security-men from Ellens making sure that the Budahas family doesn't do anything further to assist the FBI in their investigation, following Mulder's tampering and release.

Mulder is pissed that "they got to her", but Scully is ready to just write this whole thing off and to get out while they still can.


Scene 40: We later have Scully typing up her report, informing the Bureau that the colonel was returned home with only vague memories of where he was during his absence. She further reports that Mulder's supposition about alien technology in use aboard test aircraft remain inconclusive, but that she can corroborate UFO's whose nature is unknown above Ellens Air Base. She closes the case, barring authorization to look further into the mysterious test craft (yeah, right).


Scene 41: Meanwhile, Mulder is track running. He is joined by Deep Throat, unexpectedly (see, you can't make that sound non-pornish, even when you're trying to avoid some sort of double-entendre).


Commentary: Also, for somebody who is worried about his identity, Deep Throat is looking particularly out of place in the middle of a school track in a three piece suit.


Deep Throat warns Mulder that his and Scully's life may be in danger now because of his stunt. Fox tells him he knows he saw something, but that he also knows that "they" took the memory away from him and pleads to be told what he'd seen. Deep Throat confirms it was a military UFO. They exchange more dialog and Mulder asks if the aliens are already here.

His mysterious benefactor responds that "they've been here for a long, long time".


Commentary: We get an interesting camera angle cut just before end credits, which suggests that Deep Throat may also have just put himself at risk... it appears that a POV may have watched their entire meeting... but it is ambiguous whether we're seeing through an observer, or if this is just a camera angle choice.


The Good: I like the introduction of an ally for Mulder and Scully... though a very ambiguous one. We already know that Cigarette Smoking Guy in the pilot is a no-good-ski, so it is nice that there will be some support for our agents.

I also enjoyed the performance of Gabrielle Rose as Mrs. Budahas, especially when she was nearing a breakdown over her husband not being himself.

Fox being strapped down to a gurney for the procedure was pretty tense. I like that he wasn't saved from it either. His return was probably because his memory had been already wiped.

I like that last ambiguous long-view shot before credits.


The Bad: I don't like this script for the reasons mentioned in the commentary.

David's oddly monotone delivery in the setup scenes make the talky dialog even more dull than they needed to be. Where is that spark of humor he had in the pilot?

The Air Base's security is offensibly bad and is strictly allowing things to happen because it needs to for the script, which is just plain lazy writing.

The lights in the sky dots were pathetic.

I really don't like how Mulder's been written to bypass any common sense explanations and dive directly into nutzo-theory on poorly scripted "evidence". He's eccentric and a believer, we get it. But in this script, he just ends up sounding crazy and David's over the top mania just makes it that much worse. Dana should be on the phone to have his gun taken away from him after scene 25.

Really? Dana takes the air base security guy hostage, in front of witnesses in broad daylight, and then the exchange for Mulder is entirely off-screen?! Are you kidding?


Other Thoughts: In retrospect, the entirety of scene 13 was actually unnecessary, as was a few other shots which makes pacing a problem for this episode. I think there was more time to be filled than there was script to fill it.

I'd also like to know just why the car window shattered during the passby of the experimental craft, when it apparently has zero effect on any other vehicles or the base. What, exactly, was gained by that jump-scare for Scully?

I want to mention the special effects here, again. I liked the triangular CGI craft as it hovered over Mulder... it wasn't especially good, which is why I didn't include it for that section, but it wasn't bad, either... unlike the zipping white dots.

I have another problem with the scripting, as well... Dana's retrieval of Fox is just poorly handled. The extras don't seem at all concerned with her pointing a gun in their direction, there is little blowback for Fox trespassing into a restricted zone over a case which technically isn't one, since the colonel wasn't kidnapped and if the base and everything on it was a matter of national security, why is Dana allowed to take another agent hostage at gunpoint and make a trade for Fox and then drive away? This all seems way too serious over experimental aircraft that was none of their business (and as soon as 'alien technology' came out of Mulder's mouth, that would be that on anyone taking them seriously) for them to just walk away from it. The only reason it isn't in The Bad is because I can almost accept that it was just easier to let them go and move on since Mulder's memories were "redacted", then prolong a confrontation with the FBI ... almost.

Deep Throat. Bad name to use ever again and clumsily meeting with Mulder at the end was, well, clumsy.


The Score: I had severe problems with this story, both as it was constructed and with the pacing. It was, really, kind of dull despite dealing with mind wiping and alien technology boosted secret planes.

2.75 out of 5 ... and a 'yawn'.





-end-
Tags: x-files season 1 reviews
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