Take Two: THE X-FILES Season 5 (Part 4) - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

Take Two: THE X-FILES Season 5 (Part 4)

August 15, 2023 by  

THE X-FILES Season 5 (Part 4)

Credit: Fox

On Friday, September 10, 1993, Fox debuted THE X-FILES. Now, ahead of the show’s 30th anniversary, Give Me My Remote is looking back at all 11 seasons (and the two feature films) in a new daily series Take Two.

If you’ve read About Last Night, this will be formatted in a similar way: Each episode will get its own subsection/reaction, though in this case there may be slight spoilers or alluding to what comes ahead in the series. In the event a major spoiler is discussed, there will be a warning to be extra safe. Each Take Two will cover approximately 5 episodes and will wrap up the Friday before the show’s 30th birthday.

(I’ll also note how I’m watching the episodes, because some of the streaming platforms have utilized syndicated cuts of this show.)

Today, we’re continuing season 5!

(These were viewed on the original season 5 DVD set—released back in 2002. The episodes are also streaming for free on Freevee or with a Hulu subscription.)

“The Red and the Black”:

For as much as “Patient X” was about showcasing the new dynamics in play, a lot of “The Red and the Black” is about putting the pieces back in place.

At least while it lasts, it’s interesting to see Scully and Skinner as reluctant believers, while Mulder is the stubborn skeptic. (Sorry, Mulder, you were a little too convincing?)

I’ve said that I wish we got to explore Mulder’s newfound lack of faith, but, man, I would have loved to really sit with Scully as she grasped that she recollected seeing an alien spaceship. How (even temporarily) life-changing might that have been? How would that have shaken her religious faith?

It’s a delicate line they have to walk here, because they’re also leading up to the movie, which had already been mostly filmed at this point. Part of me is surprised they even had midseason myth eps like this because it does make it more complicated. But I also think the film’s existence and having to plan ahead lead to arguably the show’s strongest season.

  • An absolutely gorgeous musical score in this episode.
  • CSM is alive?????? OMG!!!!! TWIST!!!! (Sorry, sorry. At least this one was paired with the reveal he’s Spender’s father.)


I think part of this episode’s fundamental mistake was actually non-textual: It never should have been placed after a two-part myth arc. I don’t know where it would have been better suited here, but it’s just too much (and then not strong enough) to follow a myth-heavy arc with a flashback about how the division even started.

And sorry to 1990!Mulder, but you were also not married. (This is not a ship-centric temper tantrum; the only person who it makes sense it would have been is someone we meet very soon. And if they had been married, you know she would have brought it up.) 

Always love seeing Garret Dillahunt, though.

“Mind’s Eye”:

Love seeing Lili Taylor—RIP ALMOST HUMAN—and honestly she’s what elevates this episode beyond the cliche.

We’ve had episodes before where someone is tied to another person, but in this case, Marty also literally cannot see; her sole visions are through her murderous father. Can’t say I blame her for taking him out.

Again, it’s a perfectly fine episode, on paper. Taylor is just fantastic as Marty finds herself intertwined in the FBI’s investigation. And it’s nice that Mulder isn’t the only one trying to protect Marty. (Even if she does ultimately have to get arrested when she kills her dad in cold blood.)

What did you think of these THE X-FILES episodes?


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