Thursday, August 13, 2015

The X-Files - S2:E16 "Colony"

[ S2:E15 "Fresh Bones" <<< Season 2 >>> S2:E17 "End Game" ]

Spoiler Warning: This is another huge mythology episode, so spoilers will abound.

The series is really ramping up now. This is the first half of another two-parter, that I had forgotten occurred so early, in just the second season of the show. It introduces a bunch of new elements to the mythology, and sets off a huge sub-plot related to the alien conspiracy - something far more concrete than vague government cover-up of extraterrestrial contact - that will be explored throughout the series.

The episode (for which David Duchovny notably receives a co-writing credit) opens with a tantalizing and heart-racing intro. Mulder is being rushed into medical care in a military installation in critical condition, while in his voice-over we learn that he's - allegedly - discovered unprecedented proof of the existence of extraterrestrial life on Earth. In just the first three minutes, this episode has written a humongous check, and the rest of the episode, as well as its followup, will attempt to cash it in.

Jumping backward, what appears to be a Russian fighter pilot is rescued when a UFO crashes in the Arctic sea, but we soon learn that he is some kind of shape-shifting Alien Bounty Hunter (played by the square-jawed Brian Thompson), on an assassination mission (complete with his retractable ice pick, and toxic, green blood!). A CIA Agent links the murders to Cold War paranoia involving Russian experiments in cloning, but it's likely that this is just one huge red herring.

We also finally get to meet Mulder's parents, and visit their house at Martha's Vineyard. So far in the second season, there has been little mention of Mulder's sister, and no further development into the mystery of her disappearance - the driving force behind Mulder's pursuit of the truth in all things paranormal - since the refresher we got in Little Green Men. Her sudden return in this episode, all grown up (played by Megan Leitch), is shocking, but not entirely satisfying. After she's been gone for so long, it's hard to believe it's really her. We'll have to wait until the next episode to learn more.

This episode really turns up the heat on the revelations from The Erlenmeyer Flask, what with the scientific testing of extraterrestrial biology and whatnot. I must say, the amount of times that Mulder and Scully miss each other's calls in this episode borders on the ridiculous. However, it's nice that they each have different threads of the case to follow up on, independently. The episode ends on an exciting cliffhanger (plus, the whole "what did Mulder see in the ice?" thing has yet to be resolved), that really plays on the importance of trusting no one, especially with the whole shape-shifting thing going on.

To be continued...

Memorable quotes:

Mulder: I have lived with a fragile faith built on the ether of vague memories from an experience that I could neither prove, nor explain. When I was 12, my sister was taken from me, taken from our home by a force that I came to believe was extraterrestrial. This belief sustained me, fueling a quest for truths that were as elusive as the memory itself. To believe as passionately as I did was not without sacrifice, but I always accepted the risks - to my career, my reputation, my relationships, to life itself.

Mulder: What happened to me out on the ice has justified every belief. If I should die now, it would be with the certainty that my faith has been righteous. And if through death larger mysteries are revealed, I will have already learned the answer to the question that has driven me here: that there is intelligent life in the universe other than our own; that they are here among us; and that they have begun to colonize.

Mulder: If somebody really wanted to set us up, would they give us this little to go on?

CIA Agent: This is where the story gets perhaps even more incredible.

Scully: What happened to trust no one, Mulder?
Mulder: Oh, I changed it to trust everyone. I didn't tell you?

Samantha: Is it too late for a game of Stratego?
Mulder: It's twenty-two years too late.

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