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Season Four

73- HERRENVOLK 4-1          10/4/96



Mulder and Smith are pursued by the Bounty Hunter to Alberta, Canada, an apparent nursery for drones--both bees and mute adolescent clones; the girls are all replicas of Mulder's sister, Samantha. Meanwhile, Scully unravels the real purpose of Smith's work at the Social Security Administration. Historic moments: Mulder's mother--who has suffered a stroke after her confrontation with Cancer Man in "Talitha Cumi"--is healed by the Bounty Hunter at Cancer Man's directive; X is seemingly shot dead, directing Mulder to his could-be successor, U.N. operative Marita Covarrubias (where do they come up with these names?). Critique: Episode makes good use of locations, particularly in its Children of the Corn-like opener. And we're happy that the fate of sympathetic crusader Jeremiah Smith has been left unresolved--but then, this chapter opens the door to all sorts of provocative potentialities. B

 74- UNRUHE 4-2          10/27/96



Gerry Schnauz, a paranoid schizophrenic-turned-kidnapper, is giving lobotomies to young women he deems troubled. Mulder and Scully track him through the only clue he leaves: a Polaroid depicting his image of his victim's distress. Creative casting: Pruitt Taylor Vince (Heavy) as Schnauz gives new meaning to shifty-eyed. Critique: An interesting concept, "Thoughtography," quickly devolves into boilerplate Scully-in-distress shtick. B+

 75- HOME 4-3          10/11/96



The Texas Chainsaw Massacre meets Brother's Keeper, as our dynamic duo encounters an oasis of genetically induced depravity in a Norman Rockwell town called Home. Historic moment: Mulder and Scully examine their feelings about parenthood--perhaps their scariest moment in an episode packed with them. Creative casting: Local Canadian Karin Konoval as the fiercely protective mother/sister/daughter of the Johnny Mathis-lovin' Peacock boys. Critique: Simply put, one of TV's most disturbing hours. At the same time, a cinematic feast for the eyes, packed with audacious wit (and one excellent Babe reference). A

 76- TELIKO 4-4       10/18/96

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African-American men are turning up dead, with all the pigment drained from their bodies. The suspect? A ghost creature from West African folklore who can transmogrify into any size or shape. Critique: Basically, a sub- Saharan "Squeeze" (episode 2) without as, uh, colorful an antagonist. C-

 77- THE FIELD WHERE I DIED 4-5         11/3/96



A botched federal raid on a Koresh/ Jim Jones-esque cult leaves our agents 24 hours in which to come up with a prosecutable case against the zealots. In the process, one of the sect leader's six wives is found to be channeling past lives (one sounding suspiciously like Joe Pesci in Good Fellas), and Mulder becomes convinced he's shared one with her. Historic Moment: Evidently Mulder and Scully have always been connected through past lifetimes, unfortunately always as friends since his soul mate is Melissa. Critique: A well directed episode with a somewhat unusual storyline even for the X-Files,  but those hypnosis scenes are almost unwatchable. C+

78- SANGUINARIUM 4-6          11/10/96



A devil-worshipping cosmetic surgeon in search of immortality compels his colleagues to commit murder through overly enthusiastic liposuction and chemical peels, turning a Windy City hospital unit into Chicago Hopeless. Critique: Lots of juicy gore redeems this installment. B-

 79- MUSINGS OF A CIGARETTE SMOKING MAN  4-7         11/17/96



Cancer Man reviews his life story through an eavesdropped conversation between Lone Gunman Frohike and Mulder and Scully. We are told of his seduction as an Army officer into the black forces, and that he is responsible for virtually every major historical event since then--from Dealey Plaza in 1963 to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion every March. Historic moments: Fellow Army officer Bill Mulder tells Cancer Man of his 1-year-old son Fox's first words ("JFK"); and we learn the true pain underlying Cancer Man's desolate demeanor (he's a failed writer of Tom Clancy-esque spy novels under the nom de plume Raul Bloodworth). Critique: Given its incredibly arch, near-satiric tone and absurd allegations, one has to wonder to what extent this episode is intended as information, and to what extent sheer entertainment. Then again, this is Frohike's version of Cancer Man's life, so the truth is out there. B-

80- PAPER HEARTS 4-8          12/15/96



Mulder's series of vivid dreams lead him to the skeleton of a murdered child and to a serial killer he profiled years before. Mulder and Scully track down the killers "trophies", heart-shaped pieces of clothing from the victims, to discover there were additional victims. Talking to the killer, Roche, in prison leads Mulder to believe he may have abducted Samantha. Mulder takes Roche out to locate another victim but he escapes and Mulder must kill him to save a newly abducted girl before he can find if the last victim was his sister. Critique: A great spin on Samantha's disappearance, but seeing yet another reenactment is getting old. Duchovny gives an above average performance. A

81- TUNGUSKA 4-9          11/24/96



Mulder and Scully track down an alien rock carried by a Russian courier to whom Krycek has lead them. Krycek saying he is looking for revenge against CSM for trying to kill him goes with Mulder to Russia as an interpreter to track the rocks origins. They discover a Russian gulag where the rocks are mined and Mulder is taken prisoner. Mulder is subjected to experiments with the oily worms contained in the rocks. Historic moments: You thought the Cold War was over--sorry. Smallpox vaccinations get another workout. More evidence that X's heir is the blond U.N. operative Marita Covarrubias (Laurie Holden). B+

82- TERMA 4-10          12/01/96

Part 2

Mulder survives the experiment with the "black cancer" and escapes the Gulag and the country with the help of local villagers. Scully meanwhile has been investigating a comatose doctor infected with the worms who is then killed by a former KGB assassin who is forced out of retirement in order to clean up the rocks trail. Mulder returns to the Senate hearing but not before Scully is jailed for contempt for not revealing his location. They attempt to track down a second rock in Terma, North Dakota but the Russian assassin destroys it just before they can get it. Historic Moment: Krycek losses his arm to villagers trying to save him from the experiments. B

83- EL MUNDO GIRA 4-11          1/12/97



Mulder and Scully investigate a woman's death in a California migrant workers shanty town supposedly killed by the El Chupacabra (the Goatsucker) a creature from Mexican folk tales. Scully's autopsy reveals the woman died from a fungal infection and was not killed by her lover's brother as he believes as he searches for Eladio to get revenge. Eladio is the carrier of the enzyme casing the infection and death of people in his path. Mulder and Scully trace him back to the village but are to late to catch him and his brother who is now also a carrier, as they escape to Mexico. Critique: This silly story is hurt by both a slow pace and seeing very little of Mulder or Scully. C-

84- KADDISH 4-12          2/16/97



The murder of a Jewish store clerk, Isaac, becomes an x-file when he returns from the dead to kill his killers. Mulder connects it to a being created through Jewish mysticism when he locates a book on the subject at one of the crime scenes. He and Scully connect the book to Isaac's future father-in-law and make him the prime suspect but Isaac's future bride, Ariel, is the one who sends the real killer back to the dust from which he was created. Critique: Good ending plot twist, and beautifully filmed but a bit on the slow side. B-

85- NEVER AGAIN 4-13          2/9/97



Scully becomes restless with the path her life is on and while following a lead for a vacationing Mulder she goes out with a man with a newly acquired tattoo. The tattoo, of a woman who, unbeknownst to Scully, talks to Ed even driving him to kill a neighbor. By the end of the evening Scully has gotten a tattoo of her own, and by the next morning the voice of Ed's tattoo drives him to attack Scully.Historic Moment: Scully on a date for only the second time in the show's run. Critique: It's great to see Scully explain what makes her tick, but the talking tattoo is a little too lame. B+

86- LEONARD BETTS 4-14          1/26/97



A headless corpse disappears from a morgue and Mulder and Scully investigate and find only the head. When tested it's discovered the body was riddled with cancer. The supposed corpse reappears as a living ambulance driver which leads Mulder to believe the man, Betts, possesses regenerative powers and must ingest cancerous tumors in order to survive.  This gives him a heightened sense to identify people with tumors so he may kill them to survive. Historic Moment: Betts diagnoses Scully's cancer. Scully gets a kick-ass fight scene with Betts. Critique: The "You have something I need" line and Scully's "Kung-fu fighting" on Betts make this good episode into a great episode. A

 87- MEMENTO MORI 4-15          2/16/97



Scully tells Mulder of her newly diagnosed cancer and the two search for information on it's cause and how to fight it from other abductees who have similar tumors. Finding only one still alive Scully opts for more traditional treatment while Mulder, with the help of the Lone Gunmen, discovers the women's eggs were taken by the abductors to make hybrid clones. Scully stops her treatment determined to fight the disease and continue working. Historic Moment: Discovering Scully is barren, plus Mulder kisses Scully on the forehead. Critique: ARRGG, Scully with cancer, what a bummer, but it's handled beautifully in this poignant episode with wonderful narrative journal entries by Scully. A+

88- UNREQUITED 4-16          2/23/97



A seemingly invisible assassin begins killing off the military personnel he thinks are responsible for covering up the existence of Vietnam p.o.w.'s. Mulder theorizes this phantom p.o.w. who was left for dead is using an advanced ability to disappear in a person's natural blind spot,a skill the killer may have learned from his former captors.Critique: This one's a bit slow and the plot line is too similar to Sleepless (2-27). C-

 89- TEMPUS FUGIT 4-17          3/16/97


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After a commercial airliner crashes, Mulder and Scully investigate when a woman claiming to be Max Fenning's sister tells them he was on the plane carrying something that can prove the existence of extraterrestrial. Max is indeed dead leaving Mulder to theorize that the crash was related to Max's abductions and a military aircraft intercepting the u.f.o. after Max. A military air controller comes forward to implicate the government in a cover-up, and Pendrell is shot when the Mustache Man tries to kill the air controller who Scully is guarding. Mulder investigates the downed u.f.o. in a nearby lake, discovering it's alien occupants and strange lights headed right for him......Historic Moment: Scully's birthday is celebrated and Mulder gets her a Apollo 11 keychain. Critique: Mulder's explanation of the crash is too confusing but this storyline is excellent. It still seems a shame to bring Max back only to kill him in the first 5 minutes. A

 90- MAX 4-18          3/23/97

Part 2

...Mulder is chased from the water by the military investigators of the second crash site and arrested. We learn from Scully that Pendrell has died. We learn from Skinner that the air controller has been arrested for the military's explanation of the crash as a mid-air collision he supposedly caused. Scully talk's to Max's friend who had claimed to be his sister to find out that Max and she both had pieces to a piece of alien technology. Mulder finds the third piece after a search of Max's mail, but while in a plane to fly it to D.C. he is confronted by Mustache Man who takes the piece and is summarily abducted by a u.f.o. while the plane is in route. The plane lands safely but with 9 missing minutes. A-

91- SYNCHRONY 4-19          4/13/97



An old man comes back from the future to stop time travel from being developed by killing the people responsible for the early developments that made it possible. He kills his victims by freezing them. Critique: An interesting and thought provoking storyline. B 

92- SMALL POTATOES 4-20          4/20/97



A series of bizarre births of children with tails leads Mulder and Scully to a man with the ability to assume the form of anyone (male at least) to impregnate women of a small town. He's eventually caught when he assumes Mulder's identity and puts the moves on Scully. Critique: A hilarious episode and the almost kiss between the fake Mulder and the real Scully make this one of the best, ever. A+

93- ZERO SUM 4-21          4/27/97



A post office employee is killed by a swarm of bees and Skinner must clean up the trail as part of the deal he made with CSM in exchange for Scully's cancer cure. Mulder discovers he's trying to cover up the bee trail and that the bees carry the small pox virus. Critique: No Scully makes this episode a bit bland and it's mainly what appears to be just a tool to expose Skinners deal with CSM and that Marita may double cross Mulder. C

94- ELEGY 4-22          5/3/97



A mental hospital patient appears to be the prime suspect in a series of murders of young women. He sees their ghosts as do other people nearby who all happen to have the same common link: they all have terminal illnesses, including Scully who also sees a vision of one of the victims shortly before the body is discovered. Historic Moment: Scully and her therapist discuss her vision and her reasoning for continuing to work. Critique: Very well done, and gets better with every viewing. A

95- DEMONS 4-23          5/10/97



Mulder is the prime suspect in the killing of an older couple when he awakes covered in their blood and with memory loss. Scully helps to find the real answers that involve a psychologist's experimental treatment to help regain lost memories of abduction survivors while Mulder uses him to find lost memories about the circumstances of his sister's abduction.Critique: Yet another recreation of Samantha's abduction, and Mulder/ Scully pointing guns at each other is getting old. but an original story idea gets big points, as does Duchovny's performance,  A-

96- GETHSEMANE 4-24          5/18/97



In the bible it was the place where Judas betrayed Christ before he was crucified. In the X-Files it has similar meaning open to many interpretations. A frozen possible E.B.E. leads Mulder on what turns out to be the climax of one long goose chase which Scully finds out has been perpetrated by our evil friends from the beginning to use Mulder as part of their master plan. We learn Scully's cancer is spreading, but the most disturbing moment is Scully identifying Mulder's body after he commits suicide. Historic Moment: Hello! Murder's dead, how more historic can you get? Of course we never see the body, so anything is still possible. Critique: This episode is full of drama but a bit lacking as part 1 of a 2 parter. B-

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Episode Guide: Season 5

Season 1

Season 6

Season 2

Season 7

Season 3

Season 8

Season 4

Season 9