1x79 "Pilot"

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1x79 "Pilot"

Post by Cassie on Wed 7 Jun 2017 - 13:46

I decided last night to start re-watching TXF series (the plan is "as a whole" but I'll probably skip the truly awful episodes written by CC). I have a XF novel that I started way back in 2003 that I want to finish one day, but my memory of all things XF lately has been crap. So I'm rewatching while taking notes. Mostly taking notes on the mythology since my novel will deal heavily with that.

While the "Pilot" episodes isn't on my "favorites" list, and I usually don't watch it. I have to say that this time around, paying more attention than usual, it's one of the better constructed episodes written by CC. I'm guessing that those with more experience at FOX (back in the day) had a hand at helping him piece this episode together, and I'm sure it went through more drafts than any other CC script he ever wrote for this series. The attention to detail on the background of characters like Karen Swenson, Billy Miles, Dr. Nemmans, Det. Miles, and even Ray Soames actually blew my mind. I feel like I know those characters better than Mulder and Scully! LOL

I always take notice of the African American agent exiting Mulder's office as Scully is walking down the hallway to meet Mulder. My headcanon is that this man is Reggie Purdue (who we see later in another season 1 episode, which I cannot recall at the moment). Now when he tells Scully that he was under the impression that she was sent to spy on him, could it be that Agent Purdue had been down talking with Mulder about how Blevins and the CSM are assigning a scientist to him? And that's what triggers his suspicion of her? Then again, Mulder seems to have known about her before that day because he had time to read her senior thesis.

Apparently whatever UFO/alien activity there is in the area, it strongly effects electronics (the airplane, the rental car). And it even messes with magnetism, as evidenced by Mulder's compass. The magnetism thing got me thinking though, this can tie in with the Super Soldiers of season 9.

We know that the kids of the class of '89 were being tested on, and that after death they undergo a mutation. So my thinking here is that this is an attempt at creating Super Soldiers. Now in season 9, we know that Super Soldiers are pulled by magnetite, so maybe there is something magnetic in/around Bellefleur that causes any possible Super Soldier-like transformation to fail.

Even more interesting is that it doesn't seem like the human Syndicate is conducting these tests, it seems to be performed by aliens. Now both Billy Miles and Teresa Nemman get abducted at the end of s7's "Requiem," and returned during season 8. Absalom is involved with a group that rescues abductees who have been brought back to Earth, and Jeremiah Smith is with the group to heal these returned abductees - to prevent them from mutating into alien-made Super Soldiers.

Human-made Super Soldiers have the bump on the back of their necks: Gene Crane, Knowle Rohrer, and Shannon McMahon. We know that man-made Super Soldiers were used during the Gulf War in the early 90s (Provenance/Providence flashback scene). So we know for a fact that the Syndicate had scientists working on a human-made Super Soldier project, trying to create soldiers who would be immune to alien viruses, and able to combat aliens without easily dying. So it's not crazy to think that the aliens found out about this, and wanted to plant their own alien-made Super Soldiers on Earth.

We can assume that the Syndicate had been working on Super Soldier prototypes for years (if not decades) before the Gulf War (which primarily took place during 1991) so it makes sense that the aliens would start conducting experiments on kids from the class of '89 (not just in Bellefleur, but also in Sturgis, SD; and Shamrock, TX). We can probably assume in other various locations all over the world.

Perhaps the marks on their backs was an indicator that these kids were being tested on by aliens, and not by the Syndicate, and that's why the CSM took an interest in the case.

I believe that the evidence was destroyed by the Syndicate because Mulder had gotten too close to the truth in Oregon. Though the Syndicate was "destroying evidence" of alien existence and meddling with human genetics, I believe that they didn't actually destroy everything. I don't think Mulder's pictures, x-rays, and whatever was on Scully's laptop were destroyed in the fire. I think the Syndicate took it to study for themselves. They just can't have the general population knowing such things are going on.

I used to think that both Dr. Nemman and Det. Miles were somehow involved in the conspiracy/in-the-know, but after watching the "Pilot" this time around, I don't think so. I think that either one of them discovered what was happening to their children, and got involved to protect them. Because at the end of the episode, when Det. Miles hears Mulder say "How long are you gonna let it happen? He's gonna kill her!" he is faced with the fact that his son is aiding in the murder of these other kids. And what father, upon that realization, would want that to happen? Det. Miles took aim at his own son with his rifle!

The vortex swirls, and there's bright light - then suddenly, Billy Miles can speak again, and the marks on his back are gone. The aliens had to retreat from using this location as testing grounds.

Now what I'm a bit confused about is how the marks on the back, and the nasal implants are related. I get that the metallic implant was a communication device that could control the kids, and that the marks were supposed to be from the tests done to them (though I don't think the episode confirms this). So why would the marks disappear? Unless the aliens quick healed them away to get rid of evidence that they had been there. Right?

I know a lot of XF fans give crap to the season 8 and 9 Super Soldiers storyline, but IMO it had been lying dormant within the series from the very beginning (and the "Pilot" isn't the only early season episode that hints at/suggests Super Soldiers - off the top of my head, there is also "Eve"). The Super Soldier aspect of the mythology fascinates me because it seems to cover the entirety of the XF series. By the time season 8 and 9 rolled around, it only seemed to have come out of nowhere, but if you are paying attention, you can piece it together and make sense of it.

Changing the subject...

I really like the Mulder/Scully dynamic in this episode, and Scully's girly-er voice. In the "Pilot" episode Scully seemed a strong female character (something that is touch-and-go in this series over its ten seasons and two movies). I like that at one point (after finding the substance on Billy's feet) that she seemed out to jump right into believing that Billy was killing the kids, but then when Mulder mentions she has to write it in her case report, she steps back, and knows that she has to compare the sample from Billy's feet to one from the ground in the forest.

Also, Mulder's account (via regression hypnosis) of Samantha's abduction is different from what we are shown in "Little Green Men," and in his dreams in "Paper Hearts" (granted a dream isn't supposed to be an exact replica of what actually happened). Was this change intentional? Are we to believe that Mulder's regressed memories are false, and that the scene that played out in "Little Green Men" is what really happened?

I also love that Mulder and Samantha shared a room as kids. You'd think with fairly wealthy parents that they could afford a home with enough bedrooms for their children to have their own rooms!

FRVS 'Ship : Doggett/Scully
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