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The X-Files “Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster” Review (10×03)

2 Feb

X-Files-Were-Monster-01

“If there’s nothing more to life than what we already know, there’s nothing but worries, self doubt, regret, loneliness.”

“Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster” takes the paranormal and turns its lens back on us, back on the “monsters within us” as it explores what it really means to live life. It deals in the idea of absurdity, and Darin Morgan uses his setup to deftly comment on both the characters in the series and the series as a whole. Over a decade after the series finale, how do we make sense of this revival? How do we make sense of the ludicrous happenings in the world? How do we make sense of this X-Files universe?

To explore these questions, Morgan does a nice job of upending a conventional sci-fi narrative, i.e. the transforming of a man into a monster (the episode also upends the regular “Mulder the believer, Scully the skeptic” idea). Here, Guy Mann is revealed to be a lizard transforming into a man, and it’s a great way to shine a light on the ridiculous nature of human existence. He does all the things that humans are supposed to do–sex life, jobs, pets–and it becomes clear that this is an indictment of sorts of humanity. And at the same time, the episode suggests that maybe allowing yourself to believe allows you to live.

Take Mulder, for example, who begins the episode by asking Scully: “Is this really how I want to spend the rest of my days? Chasing after monsters?” The remainder of the episode draws parallels between him and Guy Mann, as both of them are realizing what it means to be human: realizing that lots of things are pointless and that everything ends and that everyone is boxed in in one way or another. “I’m just looking for some kind of internal logic,” Mulder says, and the reply from Mann is telling: “Why? There isn’t an external logic to any of it.”

The final scene between the two of them is wonderful, and here, we finally see them maybe understanding each other a little bit. As Mann runs off into the woods in his true form, a smile grows on Mulder’s face. Maybe believing can return to the equation.

GRADE: B+

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-Fantastic and funny work by Rhys Darby and Kumail Nanjiani throughout this episode.

-The rest of my “other thoughts” section would probably just consist of a bunch of references I picked up on, so here’s a more substantial list of all the callbacks/references in this episode:

http://www.vulture.com/2016/02/x-files-easter-eggs-weremonster.html

Photo credit: FOX, The X-Files

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5 Responses to “The X-Files “Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster” Review (10×03)”

  1. The Movie Guy 14 February 2, 2016 at 3:12 pm #

    I didn’t enjoy this episode nearly as much as you did, but I do agree the ending scene was wonderful. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  2. Keith Noakes February 2, 2016 at 5:18 pm #

    This was my favorite episode so far in the miniseries. I’d put it up there overall with Clyde Buckman and Jose Chung which are also great episodes, coincidentally written by Morgan.

  3. JustMeMike February 2, 2016 at 8:28 pm #

    You know, about 49 minutes in – when the Lizard Man, Guy Mann says to Mulder, Kill me now – that’s exactly how I felt watching this episode. Truly I felt that I needed to be put out of my misery at that exact moment.

    Really, I only finished the show so I would have the full story in my mind BEFORE reading your review. Lucky there were no knitting needles on hand, or I might have poked my own eyes out. KIdding of course.

    While Episode One was a ‘catch up’ and we were to begin to learn about a huge conspiracy – and Episode Two went further into that (although this episode was very scattershot and jumped around often leading to confusion) – I still liked both 1 & 2 better than this bit of existential angst about the human condition.

    I kept seeing the guy in the seersucker blazer and hat and then kept thinking of Kolchak: The Night Stalker – which I was supposed to do – but this episode failed to work for me.

    • polarbears16 February 3, 2016 at 4:38 pm #

      Haha very entertaining comment! Yeah, this style of The X-Files is beloved by many, but I can completely see why you would dislike it (I think Darin Morgan is a good writer, but I find episodes like episode 2 more compelling).

  4. Jonnie February 22, 2016 at 3:37 pm #

    Like the last two but the his one was truly bad acting and terrible

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