Saturday, January 9, 2016

The X-Files - S9:E12 "Underneath"

[ S9:E11 "Audrey Pauley" <<< Season 9 >>> S9:E13 "Improbable" ]

Now this is like what the last season was putting out - classic, dark X-Files representing a return to form. If this season had had more episodes like this one (and less like Lord of the Flies, not to mention the mythology), surely it would have rated higher, or at least could have been labelled an underrated season like 8 was, instead of the confirmation of the show's rapid decline post-Duchovny that it was. This episode's credit goes to John Shiban (one third of the power trio that includes Vince Gilligan and Frank Spotnitz), both for the writing, and for his directorial debut. It's a great episode for Doggett, about the release of a man that he fingered for murder (albeit on circumstantial evidence) back when he was in the NYPD 13 years ago. This event is depicted in the unsettling opener, which effectively captures the fractured psyche of a serial killer - if he really did kill those people. Now, DNA testing has exonerated him, and he's set to walk. But not if Doggett has anything to say about it. He's too close to the case to view it from an objective standpoint, but leave it to Reyes to provide a paranormal explanation involving transubstantiation (unsurprisingly - given the writing this season - involving religious overtones), that could possibly explain the man's guilt despite not leaving any clues tying him directly to the murders, and maybe not even realizing it himself. This is easily one of the highlights of an otherwise underwhelming season.

Memorable quotes:

Doggett: I can't just sit here and wait for this guy to kill again.

Doggett: A cop I know - a man I respect deeply - told me one time, you don't clock out at the end of your shift unless you know you did everything you could.

Bob Fassl: I pray all the time. I pray even when it looks like I'm not praying.

Doggett: You know that what you're sayin's impossible.
Scully: And yet, somehow, it's true.

Damon Kaylor: This isn't about the truth. This is about getting a conviction, Agent Doggett. And if we can't get a conviction, then the truth doesn't matter.

(In other words, the truth is no good without proof).

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