Yes, I so love X-Files and this week is my favorite: A Monster of the Week. I love how the mythology of X-Files allows for varying forms and has mixed them well. This week’s episode is no exception.
Scully and Mulder are back at it. Mulder wants to believe, but he has a list of all the ways he has been let down before by all the “monsters” that were really hoaxes and fraternity pranks. Scully misses her skeptic Mulder. (Who doesn’t?)
In this episode, we’re thrown right into monster mania. A green, scaly creature running through the woods scaring people innocently huffing paint and not bothering anyone. Scully and Mulder are stuck in this town, trying to navigate what is really going on.
This episode was just so much fun.
How can you not love the crazy motel with animal fur on the wall, wood panels, and taxidermy heads where the motel owner has cut out the eyeholes to peep in all the rooms and spy on the visitors?
Of course, Mulder is back in full swing. He is jaded, but continues to move toward the old Mulder we all know and love. The psychiatrist is wonderful. From his fabulous room, the great chair, and his prescription for an anti-psychotic for Mulder. I love it.
Then, there’s the “monster” who becomes human and it drives him crazy. He starts to realize that he needs to do horrific human things, like finding a job. And the humor of the monster realizing that humans need to BS their way through everything and that you can just walk into a store, get a job, convince people to buy things by telling them all about things they don’t know about, and then become the manager. I love everything about the insect eating were-monster.
Darin Morgan wrote a beautiful episode. I’m not really sure what else to call it. There’s comedy, twists when you need them, and pretty much utter beauty. It’s the kind of television I wish I could be able to write once in my life. I’m not sure if I can think of any flaws. I was laughing and amazed at the same time. I couldn’t wait to see what was going to happen next.
Now that we’re at episode 3, Anderson and Duchovny are finding their groove. Their timing is impeccable and it’s fun to watch them fall back into these characters after some time away. Anderson plays a sceptic Scully excited (or as excited as Dana can be) to have the believer Mulder coming back, even though she uses science to solve the case and find the murderer. Duchovny doesn’t skip a beat. He brings us along on his journey, encouraging us to want to believe as much as he does, but understanding what it’s like as you get older and people keep pushing you down. It takes a bit more to get back up. The scenes in the cemetery between Duchovny and Rhys Darby, as well as Duchovny alone, are those you can never get tired of re-watching.
Plus, this episode was wonderfully cast with supporting actors. Rhys Darby was priceless as the horned-lizard who was bit by a serial killer and turned into a horrible human. Then there is the ultimate reward for an X-Files superfan like Kumail Nanjiani who was cast as animal control officer/serial killer, Pasha. (If you haven’t listened to Nanjiani’s podcast, X-Files Files, run and listen to it NOW.) He’s living the dream, and does it well.
Overall, at the moment I’m not really sure if there’s anything I can critique about this episode. I’m sure I might come back and edit this after I watch it again, but for now, I am becoming increasingly depressed that there are only six episodes in this “special event.”