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S11.E05: Ghouli


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Kinda wish this episode would have stuck with the monster story line instead of basically becoming a mythology episode. But I did think the ending was nice.

I've always liked that Mulder isn't scared of anyone. He doesn't hesitate to confront people he thinks might be starting trouble with them.

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I’m so torn.....the best days of this show are clearly in the past, and I’ve never really cared about William one way or another aside from the emotional anguish that the whole situation puts Scully through. 

Still, Scully crying STILL makes me weepy and I melted like an ice cream cone at the look on her face when they revealed that the guy at the gas station was really William. 

Also, I got a kick out of Mulder being referred to as “Bob” in the coffee shops. 

Other than those things, I was mostly bored by this episode. 

I don’t know if it’s the show not being the same as it used to be or that The X-Files just doesn’t fit in with current times or what, but it just doesn’t feel the same and watching it now sort of makes me sad in a weird way. 

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Hmm I'll have to watch this one again. I didn't think this was the way we'd be meeting William. I don't know what I thought but this wasn't it. @Taryn74 your theory about William sending Scully the pandemic scenario was right. Good job!

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Decided to watch this after enjoying last weeks. Unfortunately it only rates a meh.

Snark below-

As a fan who watches S1-9, I am sick of William. Watching GA having to cry yet again for him, I’m sorry they didn’t keep him dead as he’s already dead weight on the show.

-From a ranch family , to owning a fancy house the Van De Camps must have won the lottery?

I like the M/S interaction. The Xfile was weak sauce.

Not sure I’m interested anymore.

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This one didn't inspire strong emotions. Didn't love or hate it. I also wish they had stuck with the ghouli as the main focus. GA did a great job with the emotional stuff. Dating 2 girls makes William an asshat but he redeemed himself slightly at the end. 

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I'll have to stew on this one a bit. So many plot hole/wtf moments:

-when Scully started the voiceover at the beginning I just rolled my eyes and Thought "oh please god no"

- how was the case an XFile? The girls obviously attacked each other and didnt they JUSTmention the Ghouli when M&S were interviewing them? Because Mulder didn't bring it up before they got there. If that's the first time it was mentioned why was it flagged as an xfile?its not like there were multiple sightings of the monster or any physical evidence that would trigger any kind of feelers Mulder might  have out there for weird cases.

-why didn't Mulder and Scully just take the second laptop with them? The whole time I'm yelling at the screen "just take it and leave! Just take it!" They would have had plenty of time to explore the thing. And I was so frustrated I missed some of the point of what was even on there.

-why did they have Skinner come all the way out to the boat for that useless conversation? So we'd think for a second he'd tell Mulder what CSM told him? Nah too easy. So does Mulder still think William is his son but they did something to him in utero? Or after Scully gave him away? I don't understand that conversation they had. He seems to say William was part of an experiment but how/when does He think it happened? Anyone? Not like Skinner clued him in.

-William heard everything Mulder and Scully said in the morgue right? He knows they have good intentions toward him. He knows they are FBI probably as well. Why not stick with them?

- I thought I saw another clip of the morgue scene where Scully says something about "your father" but unless I missed  it it wasn't there tonight? Anyone else notice that?i don't want to watch again to see if I'm right or try to find the preview clip.

Im seriously trying to figure out if the quality of the show has changed so drastically or if I have? Gillian and David still have me though. I just can't quit them.

Edited by MissL
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I immensely enjoyed it! Do I think it was perfect/flawless? No. But it was very, very good. The writing and directing, the acting by GA. I also enjoyed Miles as William. The episode gave me the feels. Makes me sad that there are so many standalones though. Maybe the powers that be have realized that at this point we need episodes like these which drive the characters and affect the larger picture, but it's too late now. I don't think a 42-min finale can bring a satisfying resolution, but then again I don't consider the revival canon.

Be as it may, I really liked the episode. Good stuff. :)

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In about 7 minutes. So why are 2 teen girls roaming around an abandoned ship late at night in the first place? I mean, ther's nothing more I'd rather do than parade around in the most run down parts of a town waving thousand dollar bills and yelling, "come and get it".  lol

Skelly is doing a much better job in 'american gods'. X- Files is american god awful

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Scully did mention something about “your father” in the morgue scene. 

I guess I’m in the minority, but I thought this episode was really good. It had a lot going on and kept me interested the entire time. I found last week’s episode quite boring. 

I also wondered about Mulder saying that Scully & William were part of a eugenics experiment while also believing William is his child. Can anyone explain?

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15 minutes ago, 100Proof said:

In about 7 minutes. So why are 2 teen girls roaming around an abandoned ship late at night in the first place? I mean, ther's nothing more I'd rather do than parade around in the most run down parts of a town waving thousand dollar bills and yelling, "come and get it".  lol

Skelly is doing a much better job in 'american gods'. X- Files is american god awful

I think Jackson/William sent them dreams/visions to get them to go there as a prank. Which doesn’t seem too bright, since it would allow his two girlfriends to meet each other....

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55 minutes ago, festivus said:

Hmm I'll have to watch this one again. I didn't think this was the way we'd be meeting William. I don't know what I thought but this wasn't it. @Taryn74 your theory about William sending Scully the pandemic scenario was right. Good job!

That was already established in the season 11 premiere though. Scully says: "My visions are from William. I don't know how, but I know that he's guiding me. And you."

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I really hope that Mulder/Scully/William finally get the happy ending that they deserve. There were so many unanswered questions. Why were the Van de Kamps killed? Why did William show zero emotion about that? Why did he show zero emotion about nearly having both of his girlfriends killed, meeting Scully, etc... The portrayal of William was so weird. He's a borderline psychopath. 

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2 hours ago, AmeliaBedelia said:

This one didn't inspire strong emotions. Didn't love or hate it. I also wish they had stuck with the ghouli as the main focus. GA did a great job with the emotional stuff. Dating 2 girls makes William an asshat but he redeemed himself slightly at the end. 

Yea that's where I'm at as well. But ghouli... was William. So that's why it was what it was. It was a figment of William's imagination/powers. Word. Hated that. Yea he did. James did a good job with this episode by comparison to Founder's. I cared about M and S during their scenes together, unlike the other episode.

 

1 hour ago, Italian Ice said:

I really hope that Mulder/Scully/William finally get the happy ending that they deserve. There were so many unanswered questions. Why were the Van de Kamps killed? Why did William show zero emotion about that? Why did he show zero emotion about nearly having both of his girlfriends killed, meeting Scully, etc... The portrayal of William was so weird. He's a borderline psychopath. 

I hope so too.

I think that the DOD guys killed them to get to William. And then he faked his death to try to throw them off his scent. At first though, I thought that William killed them. O_o I know, that bugged me. Big time. Wasn't too thrilled about it.

Edited by AntiBeeSpray
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William has a blog about monsters, played baseball, decorated his room with space stuff, rose from the dead, and then went on the run. 

Yep, he's definitely Mulder's kid.

 

So the promos were a total fake-out, making us think Scully got shot, but William actually tricked the DOJ guys into shooting each other. I was really hoping he'd come out of hiding and actually get to talk to them, but considering he just saw his adoptive parents get murdered and has a bunch of dangerous people looking for him, he didn't want to put them at risk. That scene of Scully talking to William at the morgue, thinking he's dead when she only just found him was heartbreaking. I think William saying, "I wish I could know you better" was his way of saying he heard her. 

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I might have liked this more as a straight case file, but I have never had a single shit to give about William, so that’s to be expected.  Bless what Gillian did with it, and David, too, especially in the final scene, but I still just wish this little plot point had never existed, and I don’t know whether that’s why this didn’t grab me, or if it was just the script, but it didn’t.  (And even without the William tie-in, there wasn’t much to it as a MOTW – this was just blah on every level.) 

Skinner expositioning about alien-human hybrid experiments and this whole Project Crossroads thing felt shoe-horned in.  Okay, fine.  But Mulder and Scully’s emotions, the chase sequence at the hospital in the end – I wanted to get invested in that, but I couldn’t, not properly.  It was just blah when it shouldn’t have been.  Not bad, but blah.  That's the word I keep coming back to.

This was like a lesser version of Wong's Founder's Mutation to me - the M&S interaction is on point, there's the DoD and secret experiments, there's William stuff that drags it down, etc.

Miles Robbins doesn’t, from this, seem to have inherited his parents’ acting chops (but he has the young version of his dad’s floppy hair thing going on nicely), but a) he’s young, and b) who can really tell from a weak script.  I assume we'll be seeing Jackson again - and now that the poor kid has lost his parents, I'm not as resistant to that as my usual - so we'll see.

“You See What I Want You to See” – the season’s record of altering the tag line, and the alternate universe theme of those changed versions, remains intact, I see.

Ugh, a VO.  At least no stock footage this time, so Wong is one step ahead of Carter.  But the snowglobes gave me Vegreville flashbacks.

Mulder using Bob as his name at the coffee shop amused me (even though it was another fake universe thing this season is hitting us over the head with).  And “How is it possible the only updates I’ve received have come via complaints from other agencies?” made me laugh out loud.  This is how I like my Skinner.

I’ve only read discussion of seasons eight and nine, but I thought the Van de Kamps were farmers.  And I thought it was a super-secret adoption for William’s safety, so how do Mulder and Scully know the parents’ last name (but Skinner -who arranged the adoption, no? - doesn’t)?

Isn’t Scully’s DNA on file a hundred times over, so she doesn’t have to swab her cheek?  And why did she just cut off some hair; you need a root to do the best DNA test on hair, so when that’s available, take it.

If whatever that girl was offering Scully was a throat lozenge, she should have taken it. 

Don’t variations on “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything” pre-date Malcom X?  Maybe he was the first to phrase it exactly that way.

That guy Scully kept seeing looked at first like the same actor who was Dr. Yonechi in Synchrony, but then I realized it wasn’t (and IMDb confirmed).

Why did Jackson make his two girlfriends see the monster?  As a prank?  What an ass.

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Still so goddam dark. I had to crank the brightness way the hell up and still wasn't sure what was happening on the boat. 


That was a pretty interesting episode, though I don't like having it confirmed that William is not Mulder's son. Apparently he is Scully's, though, since she shares his visions. Did anyone else find it odd that when suddenly confronted by a screeching monster in the dark, the first reaction of both girls was to go full-on Buffy the Vampire Slayer on it? Not run away? I did think it was odd the M&S didn't identify themselves as FBI agents as they rushed into the house during the shooting. Over all, a pretty solid monster of the week, though I did nearly doze off during Scully's angst-a-thon in the morgue. And, sigh, yet another secret nefarious government program, as if there weren't enough of those already. Please, writers, we know this one isn't going to go anywhere just like all the previous ones. Just get on with the MOTWs. 


Seriously now, what is up with Anderson's voice? 

Oh, and doesn't it take a lot longer than 2 hours to run a DNA comparison, or has technology really advanced that much since the series? 

Edited by Ghost of TWOP Past
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36 minutes ago, Bastet said:

I might have liked this more as a straight case file, but I have never had a single shit to give about William, so that’s to be expected.  Bless what Gillian did with it, and David, too, especially in the final scene, but I still just wish this little plot point had never existed, and I don’t know whether that’s why this didn’t grab me, or if it was just the script, but it didn’t.  (And even without the William tie-in, there wasn’t much to it as a MOTW – this was just blah on every level.) 

Skinner expositioning about alien-human hybrid experiments and this whole Project Crossroads thing felt shoe-horned in.  Okay, fine.  But Mulder and Scully’s emotions, the chase sequence at the hospital in the end – I wanted to get invested in that, but I couldn’t, not properly.  It was just blah when it shouldn’t have been.  Not bad, but blah.  That's the word I keep coming back to.

This was like a lesser version of Wong's Founder's Mutation to me - the M&S interaction is on point, there's the DoD and secret experiments, there's William stuff that drags it down, etc.

Miles Robbins doesn’t, from this, seem to have inherited his parents’ acting chops (but he has the young version of his dad’s floppy hair thing going on nicely), but a) he’s young, and b) who can really tell from a weak script.  I assume we'll be seeing Jackson again - and now that the poor kid has lost his parents, I'm not as resistant to that as my usual - so we'll see.

“You See What I Want You to See” – the season’s record of altering the tag line, and the alternate universe theme of those changed versions, remains intact, I see.

Ugh, a VO.  At least no stock footage this time, so Wong is one step ahead of Carter.  But the snowglobes gave me Vegreville flashbacks.

Mulder using Bob as his name at the coffee shop amused me (even though it was another fake universe thing this season is hitting us over the head with).  And “How is it possible the only updates I’ve received have come via complaints from other agencies?” made me laugh out loud.  This is how I like my Skinner.

I’ve only read discussion of seasons eight and nine, but I thought the Van de Kamps were farmers.  And I thought it was a super-secret adoption for William’s safety, so how do Mulder and Scully know the parents’ last name (but Skinner -who arranged the adoption, no? - doesn’t)?

Isn’t Scully’s DNA on file a hundred times over, so she doesn’t have to swab her cheek?  And why did she just cut off some hair; you need a root to do the best DNA test on hair, so when that’s available, take it.

If whatever that girl was offering Scully was a throat lozenge, she should have taken it. 

Don’t variations on “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything” pre-date Malcom X?  Maybe he was the first to phrase it exactly that way.

That guy Scully kept seeing looked at first like the same actor who was Dr. Yonechi in Synchrony, but then I realized it wasn’t (and IMDb confirmed).

Why did Jackson make his two girlfriends see the monster?  As a prank?  What an ass.

Yea, but at least I gave a damn about M and S here. I didn't in any of their scenes in that ep. Minus the William ones. I cried in those. Didn't with this one.

He's still pretty young so I give him a small pass on that. Hopefully he'll do better next time.

I took the 'Bob' thing as a joke from Scully, the second time it was used. Nothing more. Word.

Yea but maybe they won the lottery.

Agreed about Jackson/William doing that... what a jerk/ass. Ugh. I hope they dump his ass. Maybe he'll learn some humility.

 

I think that this song by TLC fits him:

 

Edited by AntiBeeSpray
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Oh well, as if I wasn't already having enough of a hard time trying to give a damn about William (having skipped the Duchovny-less seasons, I never even had a connection to his baby self), they go and turn him into the biggest douche that ever douched. Toying with both girls then setting them up to either accidentally injure themselves wandering in the middle of the night in a run-down wreck of a ship (one of them FEEL through the floor!) or kill each other in a panic. As a "joke" (you goddamn psycho, you). WTF, show. For a second I totally thought he orchestrated the whole thing to force the girls to make the choice for his sorry ass by unknowingly eliminating "the other"...

THEN he lets Scully cry her apologies over his "corpse" for like an hour, does not shed a single tear for his just brutally murdered parents AND KEEPS LYING TO HIS GIRLFRIENDS (whom, for some reason, do not beat him to a pulp once they find out - it's Stockholm Syndrom-ing his loved ones another of his powers?). Cancer Man IS his father, alright.

What a mess of an episode. You should have gotten a dog, Dana.

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10 hours ago, Ghost of TWOP Past said:

That was a pretty interesting episode, though I don't like having it confirmed that William is not Mulder's son. Apparently he is Scully's, though, since she shares his visions.

It wasn't at all confirmed that William isn't Mulder's son.  Mulder's DNA wasn't even tested against who they thought at the time was Jackson Van de Kamp, so he was in no way ruled out as William's father. 

They weren't trying to establish paternity, so they didn't really need to see if Mulder's DNA matched his.  They only really needed to see if he was a match to either of them to come to the conclusion that Jackson was really William.  It made sense for it to be Scully's DNA they used, although again, they could have used either, since she's a doctor and could just swab herself and get what was needed from the body.  Also, the show so far has focused more on her connection and link to William through the shared visions and she was the one who made the final decision to put William up for adoption.  

Mulder and Scully have both always acknowledged and acted as if William was their son together and unequivocally.  Although the show has and still is trying to muddy the waters when it comes to William's paternity, neither Mulder nor Scully have ever acted as if he was anything other than their shared child.  The IVF she tried failed and they were sleeping together, so 1 + 1 =baby.  I personally don't buy the CSM twist at the end of MSIII, but even if they go with it, nothing will significantly change with regards to Mulder, Scully, and their son.

As for the entirety of the episode itself, I really liked it.  I'm not going to nitpick or dwell on little things that have no significance in the grand scheme of things or waste time trying to compare the show and Mulder and Scully to 20 years ago, so I'm really enjoying the season as a whole (minus most of MSIII).  I thought this one was the strongest of the five so far.  

Edited by KBrownie
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In the first episode this season Spender told Scully where or at the least, WHO her child was. If, as was shown, he did tell her, why was she completely clueless about location and name until she realized she'd recognized the house? 

I think that they both have their suspicions about William not being a Baby-Mulder. I think Scully would rather not think/discuss the option and Mulder just doesn't want to draw attention to the possibility. I do think that this show was tossing up the anvils to hint that maybe CSM isn't right and that maybe William is Mulder's. CSM can't possibly know when they consummated their relationship and where it fits into his rapey timeline. I think that Jackson's quirks were definitely Mulder-quirks.  So I hope that show ends with that reveal. 

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10 hours ago, MissL said:

 

- I thought I saw another clip of the morgue scene where Scully says something about "your father" but unless I missed  it it wasn't there tonight? Anyone else notice that?i don't want to watch again to see if I'm right or try to find the preview clip.

She states that she wished she had been able to get to know him, he could have gotten to know her and his father :)

8 hours ago, phalange said:

 

So the promos were a total fake-out, making us think Scully got shot, but William actually tricked the DOJ guys into shooting each other. I was really hoping he'd come out of hiding and actually get to talk to them, but considering he just saw his adoptive parents get murdered and has a bunch of dangerous people looking for him, he didn't want to put them at risk. That scene of Scully talking to William at the morgue, thinking he's dead when she only just found him was heartbreaking. I think William saying, "I wish I could know you better" was his way of saying he heard her. 

That was my take on it as well and I’m glad that William was able to acknowledge Scully’s word and in his own way assure her that he holds no ill will against her.

 

...

General thoughts on the episode

I found it an enjoyable episode overall and preferred it to last weeks efforts. My favourite parts were definitely Scully’s talk in the morgue, Gillian played her grief so perfectly, Mulder being called Bob in the coffee shop and the final scene. 

2 minutes ago, Keener said:

In the first episode this season Spender told Scully where or at the least, WHO her child was. If, as was shown, he did tell her, why was she completely clueless about location and name until she realized she'd recognized the house? 

I thought Spender told her that his adopted name was Van De Camp. I don’t think she was told anything more than that let alone his actual address? 

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18 minutes ago, Wayward Son said:

She states that she wished she had been able to get to know him, he could have gotten to know her and his father :)

That was my take on it as well and I’m glad that William was able to acknowledge Scully’s word and in his own way assure her that he holds no ill will against her.

 

...

General thoughts on the episode

I found it an enjoyable episode overall and preferred it to last weeks efforts. My favourite parts were definitely Scully’s talk in the morgue, Gillian played her grief so perfectly, Mulder being called Bob in the coffee shop and the final scene. 

I thought Spender told her that his adopted name was Van De Camp. I don’t think she was told anything more than that let alone his actual address? 

Yes, and in this episode, Scully tells Mulder the name and says it must be a coincidence. M immediately says it isn’t a coincidence and that William called her here. So they go to the house thinking it’s probably William but unsure. 

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21 minutes ago, Wayward Son said:

She states that she wished she had been able to get to know him, he could have gotten to know her and his father.

 

...

General thoughts on the episode

I found it an enjoyable episode overall and preferred it to last weeks efforts. My favourite parts were definitely Scully’s talk in the morgue, Gillian played her grief so perfectly, Mulder being called Bob in the coffee shop and the final scene. 

 

Thanks! I must have just missed the "father" part. Surprising since I'm so sensitive to it thanks to MSIII.

I agree on your points. Those were my high points as well. I liked the reference to Mulder being upset by his comments to the DOD guys and I appreciate that he is being strong for Scully but I would like more of a view at his feelings on this in future episodes. He lost his child too (shut up CC). As much as I hated what they did with the William plot years ago I hated even more that Mulder found out offscreen that his son had been given away.  Would like to see DD have some heavy lifting to do too. He can handle it. 

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12 minutes ago, Keener said:

I think that they both have their suspicions about William not being a Baby-Mulder. I think Scully would rather not think/discuss the option and Mulder just doesn't want to draw attention to the possibility.

Is there any real, concrete evidence to support this though?  Neither of them have ever expressed any other possibility other than William being theirs.  Hence, the continued reference to him, the latest being in "Plus One," as a "miracle."  The "miracle" being that Scully managed to conceive naturally after the cancer and her infertility issues.  Remember, both she and Mulder had been taken and experimented on at some point by the time William was conceived, so I think that is where their concerns about his health and why people were after him stemmed from.  And Mulder was worried about where he fit in after he returned from his abduction.  Not what was suggested in MSIII.  Scully explicitly telling Mulder that she named him after Mulder's father was, according to an interview from Frank Spotnitz I believe, their way of confirming that Mulder was William's father.  Since then it's been "my son" and "our son" from Mulder.  This "En Ami" crap is just that.  Neither of them have mentioned anything about the events of that episode since they originally occurred.  And to be honest, anything from someone like CSM is a lie until proven otherwise.  I don't know why Skinner or Monica or anyone would ever entertain the idea that anything he says is the truth and not just another way to manipulate them. 

 

32 minutes ago, Wayward Son said:

I thought Spender told her that his adopted name was Van De Camp. I don’t think she was told anything more than that let alone his actual address? 

 You're right.  Spender didn't tell her anything other than that the family that adopted him was named Van De Kamp.  There's a moment in the episode where you can see her react to hearing the name.

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My only issue with this episode is...why make William such a little dick? Pick up Artist reader. Has 2 girlfriends, who he lies to, and then thinks it would be a fun 'prank' to invade their dreams, send them off to a scary, dangerous abandoned boat yard in the middle of the nite, and basically cause them to nearly murder one another? What is the purpose of all of this? I can hand wave a lot that being a teenager often means you're stupid or naïve or unformed, but that's some hateful shit. He DOES seem like a young sociopath.

One of the girlfriends looked like a younger, blonde Sarah Hyland.

Scully's morgue scene was affecting. GA can still bring it, even tho her voice distracts the hell out of me.

DD is so yummy. Young William/Jackson and his floppy hair are cute, but he's no DD/Mulder.

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I really enjoyed this episode, I loved the Scully/Milder stuff as well as Scully/William. The finale scene where it was revealed that William was the "writer" that kept bumping into Scully was really bittersweet. I wish Scully/William had a chance to bond.

I like that were getting more pieces and they overall story (from the My Sacrifice episodes) is starting to become clear.

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2 hours ago, KBrownie said:

It wasn't at all confirmed that William isn't Mulder's son.  Mulder's DNA wasn't even tested against who they thought at the time was Jackson Van de Kamp, so he was in no way ruled out as William's father. 

They weren't trying to establish paternity, so they didn't really need to see if Mulder's DNA matched his.  They only really needed to see if he was a match to either of them to come to the conclusion that Jackson was really William.  It made sense for it to be Scully's DNA they used, although again, they could have used either, since she's a doctor and could just swab herself and get what was needed from the body.  Also, the show so far has focused more on her connection and link to William through the shared visions and she was the one who made the final decision to put William up for adoption.   

It did make sense that it was Scully's DNA they used and also, Scully was hell-bent on testing - as soon as she comes into the morgue, she swabs her mouth.  So since they wanted to get the answer quickly, it made sense to test William against Scully's DNA.

 

1 hour ago, Keener said:

I think that they both have their suspicions about William not being a Baby-Mulder. I think Scully would rather not think/discuss the option and Mulder just doesn't want to draw attention to the possibility. I do think that this show was tossing up the anvils to hint that maybe CSM isn't right and that maybe William is Mulder's. CSM can't possibly know when they consummated their relationship and where it fits into his rapey timeline. I think that Jackson's quirks were definitely Mulder-quirks.  So I hope that show ends with that reveal. 

I agree that Mulder has always harbored his own fears about William's paternity - I think he's always known he is the only option in terms of Scully's willing participation, but that he has always believed that Scully was subject to these kind of tests that could make William's parentage messy.  Emotionally, though, I think he thinks of himself as William's father but he's really afraid of opening up any can of worms that would lead him into directions he'd rather not go.

1 hour ago, Wayward Son said:

She states that she wished she had been able to get to know him, he could have gotten to know her and his father :)

That was my take on it as well and I’m glad that William was able to acknowledge Scully’s word and in his own way assure her that he holds no ill will against her.

 

According to James Wong, William did hear her.  It was such a great, subtle way for him to convey that to her, though.

 

For some reason, I can't comment below, so I will comment above - I don't think he seems like a young sociopath. I think he seems like a teenage kid, and teenage boys often do really stupid things without thinking.  I think he was being honest when he said he didn't realize the consequences of his actions and that he was trying to control something that is hard to control.  That's how teenagers are, they don't have the executive functioning yet to think through their actions.  So while he definitely acted stupidly, I don't think he did so with any malicious intent. Which I like because that's how teenagers are. 

1 hour ago, luna1122 said:

My only issue with this episode is...why make William such a little dick? Pick up Artist reader. Has 2 girlfriends, who he lies to, and then thinks it would be a fun 'prank' to invade their dreams, send them off to a scary, dangerous abandoned boat yard in the middle of the nite, and basically cause them to nearly murder one another? What is the purpose of all of this? I can hand wave a lot that being a teenager often means you're stupid or naïve or unformed, but that's some hateful shit. He DOES seem like a young sociopath.

 

Edited by eleanorofaquitaine
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13 hours ago, festivus said:

@Taryn74 your theory about William sending Scully the pandemic scenario was right. Good job!

Score!  

(I saw that you tagged me in a post in this thread last night, knowing I wouldn't be able to watch the episode until this morning, and it's been killing me all night long to find out what went down!  LOL)

 

12 hours ago, EUROTRASH said:

That was already established in the season 11 premiere though. Scully says: "My visions are from William. I don't know how, but I know that he's guiding me. And you."

Yes.  I had speculated about it before this season aired, though, in the S10 MSII thread.

 

 

12 hours ago, Batgirl said:

I guess I’m in the minority, but I thought this episode was really good.

 

12 hours ago, EUROTRASH said:

I immensely enjoyed it! Do I think it was perfect/flawless? No. But it was very, very good.

I'm with you guys!  I thought it was a good continuation of the William storyline we've been getting.  I had tears literally dripping down my face at more than one point.  And I had to pause it to brace myself before M/S went into the house the first time, knowing that "Jackson Van de Kamp" probably wasn't a coincidence at all (c'mon Scully, you know better than that) and not knowing what they were going to find when they went in.  I was horrified at the thought that their son could have turned out to be such a terrible person.  I mean, truly horrified.  I was so relieved to find out he not only faked his own suicide but didn't kill the Van de Kamps at all.

At first I thought it was really odd that Scully was so friendly with the man she kept "running into" instead of hostile/suspicious of him (especially since she had seen him standing on the dock watching them when they were at the Chimera) but as soon as he said "I wish I could know you better" I knew it was really William, and that she was picking up on the vibe that he meant her no harm.  (I also started crying like a little baby.  Shut up.)

 

12 hours ago, Batgirl said:

I think Jackson/William sent them dreams/visions to get them to go there as a prank.

Yeah, it seemed pretty obvious to me he thought both of them would just run away as soon as they got a little spooked, and it would ultimately be a fairly harmless prank.  (One of the girls mentioned kids go there during the summer to get high, so I don't think any of them suspected the ship would be in such bad shape it would be dangerous to be walking around in it.)  He called 911 and also "called" Scully to come help as soon as it got out of hand.  So, stupid teenage prank that went sideways, but that can happen to the best of us.  Doesn't make him a bad person.

 

The acting by the teenagers could have been better, but overall I consider this a very solid episode and I'll definitely be rewatching it a few times.

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3 hours ago, KBrownie said:

They weren't trying to establish paternity, so they didn't really need to see if Mulder's DNA matched his.  They only really needed to see if he was a match to either of them to come to the conclusion that Jackson was really William.  It made sense for it to be Scully's DNA they used, although again, they could have used either, since she's a doctor and could just swab herself and get what was needed from the body.  Also, the show so far has focused more on her connection and link to William through the shared visions and she was the one who made the final decision to put William up for adoption. 

There is a plot purpose reason she kept that vial of his hair.  

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As I am home sick today, I rewatched the show and Jackson does tell his girlfriend that the prank got out of hand because he’s still getting used to his powers. Apparently he just wanted to scare them but it seems when he’s emotionally upset”there was so much blood” he can’t control it. So stupid yes but not intention.

All this makes me wonder if CSM knows about Jackson. He must have known Skinner was going to run and tell Mulder about the Project. Is he trying to smoke Jackson out?

I wasn’t too keen on Robbins acting but I supposed no one was ever going to be everyone’s ideal William and it’s more RL to give the kid some flaws. If I were a betting man, I’d bet the series end will be bittersweet. If everyone survives I cannot see a big happy family. Jackson will still have to process his parents death and even meeting his birth parents can’t take away the pain of lossing your whole family. So I’m thinking bittersweet. 

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Pranking two girls who you are actively deceiving, even if no actual physical harm was meant to come to them, is, if not sociopathic, still awfully douchey. If I ever really imagined how M&S kid would turn out, it's not as a playa-wannabe. But whatever.

The Pick Up Artist guy...I kept thinking I knew him from some previous X-file or other, but it was from Lost...he was the Dharma Initiative's training film host/narrator. Also was on an episode of Aquarius with DD.

Did the same actors play the Van de Kamps as before?  They definitely upgraded their living conditions.

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29 minutes ago, domina89 said:

There is a plot purpose reason she kept that vial of his hair.  

I'm not following.  What is the plot purpose behind why she kept a vial of the hair?

How do we know that she even "kept" it?  I thought she was using the hair as part of the DNA testing.

Edited by KBrownie
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2 minutes ago, luna1122 said:

The Pick Up Artist guy...I kept thinking I knew him from some previous X-file or other, but it was from Lost...he was the Dharma Initiative's training film host/narrator.

Ahhhh, that's where I knew him from.  I thought it must have been one of the "shadowy government" doctors from way back when but I hadn't checked imdb yet.

 

 

2 minutes ago, KBrownie said:

How do we know that she "kept" it?  I thought she was using the hair as part of the DNA testing.

Wasn't she looking at it in the car at the end?  I'll have to go back and check.

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3 minutes ago, KBrownie said:

I'm not following.  What is the plot purpose behind why she kept a vial of the hair?

How do we know that she "kept" it?  I thought she was using the hair as part of the DNA testing.

The plot purpose would be when Skinner or CSM finally tell M&S about William being a science rape baby Scully can use the hair to test against Mulder and hopefully prove CSM is a lieing liar who lies.

 

she was looking at the hair in the car before they stopped for gas.

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1 minute ago, MissL said:

The plot purpose would be when Skinner or CSM finally tell M&S about William being a science rape baby Scully can use the hair to test against Mulder and hopefully prove CSM is a lieing liar who lies.

 

she was looking at the hair in the car before they stopped for gas.

Yes, exactly.  

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6 minutes ago, MissL said:

The plot purpose would be when Skinner or CSM finally tell M&S about William being a science rape baby Scully can use the hair to test against Mulder and hopefully prove CSM is a lieing liar who lies.

 

she was looking at the hair in the car before they stopped for gas.

But why would she need the hair to do that?  They can just do a cheek swab with Mulder like Scully did.  Maybe she kept it for sentimental value.  It's not unheard of.

And they are going to need to have extensive DNA testing done anyway because Jackson and CSM will share DNA because CSM is Mulder's father.  A cheek swab might not be enough.

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56 minutes ago, Taryn74 said:

Yes.  I had speculated about it before this season aired, though, in the S10 MSII thread.

Yep. That's what I was referring to. I never figure stuff like that out so I was impressed. :)

 

I want to watch this again today if I have time now that I know what was going on. On first impression though I thought William was just acting like a teenage boy doing dumb shit and not really thinking about the consequences. I raised two of them myself. 

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18 minutes ago, KBrownie said:

But why would she need the hair to do that?  They can just do a cheek swab with Mulder like Scully did.  Maybe she kept it for sentimental value.  It's not unheard of.

She needs to keep a sample of William's DNA to compare to Mulder's since he took off and they don't know where he is.  I'm assuming a standard DNA test can distinguish the difference between father and grandfather, but maybe someone on this board knows more about this topic than I do.  I just think there was a reason beyond sentimentality that we specifically had a scene of Scully keeping the vial of hair.

Edited by domina89
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12 minutes ago, domina89 said:

She needs to keep a sample of William's DNA to compare to Mulder's since he took off and they don't know where he is.  I'm assuming a standard DNA test can distinguish the difference between father and grandfather, but maybe someone on this board knows more about this topic than I do.  I just think there was a reason beyond sentimentality that we specifically had a scene of Scully keeping the vial of hair.

 

I guess we'll see, but there's still nothing unique about the hair as she could have also taken multiple samples from the cheek swab to use later if she wanted to test Mulder's DNA against Jackson's.  Apparently they can be stored for decades.  Also, at that moment she took the samples, he was dead and not going anywhere and I assume she thought he was going to stay that way.  She had no knowledge or visions of him taking off in the future, so her keeping the hair because she knew she might need it later doesn't really work. 

It also doesn't work to me because at this point she doesn't have any reason to want or need to test Mulder's DNA.  If there were, they would have done it at the same time as her.  Mulder was right there.  They could have taken a swab from him too.  As soon as it was confirmed that Jackson matched her DNA, it was a given for both of them that that meant that Jackson was Mulder's too.  Yeah, we know why they didn't test Mulder as they want to drag out the CSM bullshit, but Mulder and Scully have no reason to doubt that William is his son.  They haven't shown any doubt about it either.

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6 minutes ago, KBrownie said:

I guess we'll see, but there's still nothing unique about the hair as she could have also taken multiple samples from the cheek swab to use later if she wanted to test Mulder's DNA against Jackson's.  Also, at that moment she took the samples, he was dead and not going anywhere and I assume she thought he was going to stay that way.  She had no knowledge or visions of him taking off in the future, so her keeping the hair because she knew she might need it later doesn't really work. 

You misunderstand me.  I'm sure Scully's motivation to keep the hair sample was for sentimental reasons, but I'm talking about writing and plot.  Thinking ahead a little- not just specifically for this episode.  We needed to see that she kept an actual sample of William's DNA so that in the future, when CSM tries to play his game with them, we will understand that yes, they have the sample to test because we saw her keep it.  It's just speculation on my part, of course, but I do appreciate continuity.

Edited by domina89
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22 minutes ago, domina89 said:

You misunderstand me.  I'm sure Scully's motivation to keep the hair sample was for sentimental reasons, but I'm talking about writing and plot.  Thinking ahead a little- not just specifically for this episode.  We needed to see that she kept an actual sample of William's DNA so that in the future, when CSM tries to play his game with them, we will understand that yes, they have the sample to test because we saw her keep it.  It's just speculation on my part, of course, but I do appreciate continuity.

Yeah, I agree. Scully kept it for sentimental purposes but it's like Chekhov's hair sample - they made sure we saw she kept it because it's going to come up again and I think that the most likely scenario is in relation to William's biology.

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35 minutes ago, KBrownie said:

I guess we'll see, but there's still nothing unique about the hair as she could have also taken multiple samples from the cheek swab to use later if she wanted to test Mulder's DNA against Jackson's.  Apparently they can be stored for decades

But Scully's been around the X-Files long enough that she knows evidence has a way of disappearing into thin air.  I'm sure she did keep the hair for sentimental reasons (the way people keep a bit from their baby's first haircut, for example) but in the back of her mind she's also wise enough to know it's a good idea to keep a sample in her own safekeeping.

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Sneaky, X-Files. Tease us with a cool MoTW story, and then trick us into a mythology episode, including dealing with the whole gross "Cancer Man raped Scully" story, which exists now because...someone Chris Carter hates all of us. I just hate the mythology stuff, its so stupid, pointless, and increasingly gross. If CC had any sense, he would have ditched this alien conspiracy crap by season 5. 

So we meet William, and as it turns out, William is a prick. I get that he is a teenager, but not only was he dating and lying to two girls at once, reading sleazy pick up artist books, he decided that giving his girlfriends horrible nightmares, luring them to an abandoned ship, and forcing them to see monsters and beat the shit out of each other, because I guess he thought that sounded hilarious. Plus, he didn't seem all that upset about his beaten girlfriends OR his dead parents. No idea why they decided to go this way with him, beyond getting the X Files involved. The last scene was nice though, so maybe he could get better one day. It would be nice for him to reconnect with Mulder and Scully, for their sake if nothing else. 

That being said, there were some good parts. I loved Mulder being Bob at the coffee shop (because he doesn't have the time to explain Fox) Skinner being classic Skinner (why do I only get updates on your cases when I am getting complaints from other agencies?) and great acting from Gillian and David. I think if they had ditched the mythology stuff and made this a straight up MoTW (and maybe left it ambiguous if the kid was William, or just had Mulder and Scully projecting) this could have been a really good episode, instead of a "meh" episode. I was excited for an X-Files take on Creepy Pasta, which seems like something that would be perfect for a modern take on X Files, but that got abandoned pretty quickly. So, it wasn't awful like the first episode this season or anything, but it wasn't anything special. 

You know, if the show wants to bring stuff back from the past and deal with unanswered questions, why dont they explain that alien ghost from the first season? Why would you bring up an alien ghost and never explain it?!

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15 hours ago, Bastet said:

Bless what Gillian did with it, and David, too, especially in the final scene

This. I found myself thinking about a tidbit I'd heard about "Beyond the Sea," eons ago--that TPTB were considering replacing GA, so Morgan and Wong wrote her something to really tear into and she CRUSHED it. I have very mixed feelings about this iteration of William/Jackson...but everything Gillian put out there in this episode made it clear that she's honestly outgrown this goony little alien boogeyman show. The look on her face, watching that final surveillance tape! How does she even DO that? I don't understand why she isn't a huge superstar, to be honest, although I suppose that life brings miseries all its own. She gave James Wong a gift in return, tonight.

So, teenage Jackson is a bit of a two-timing horndog pickup artist? Whose adoptive parents are dialogue-free ciphers dead on the floor? I'd expect the boy to be a leeeetle more FREAKED RIGHT THE FUCK OUT over that. Maybe we can attribute his bland affect to poor parenting? ;) On the other hand, he's a hot weirdo with dorky space-monsters-and-fanfic interests, and failing to manage these varied aspects of his self? That's Mulder's kid! 

Did I hear it right, that he's driving cross-country? Back to Wyoming, I take it? And how did the Van De Kamps end up in Norfolk, where the Navy and the DOD have a huge presence? Maybe his adoptive parents were heading east to turn him over to nefarious forces, which would temper his grief I suppose. 

2 hours ago, eleanorofaquitaine said:

it's like Chekhov's hair sample

Quoting this because I hope you're right, and for the Chekhov's _______ phrasing, which I also use frequently. I think the weirdest version I ever found myself saying was "Chekhov's pygmy deer." 

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The doctor with the Japanese name is said to have taken human DNA and mixed it with some alien stuff, so I guess I did jump to the conclusion that the human portion came only from one person, because it seems to me it would be MUCH harder to combine portions of multiple individuals into a single, viable amalgamation. So if Sully was established as the human donor, I concluded Mulder could not have contributed  as well. But this is all hand-wavey made-up DNA tech much more advanced than the real world anyway, why not have two humans, an alien, and possibly more thrown into the blender? Yeah, Mulder could still be the partial dad. Hell, William could be part wombat, for all we know. 

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