Sunday, June 6, 2010

Review - The X-Files Season 1 Episode 3 Squeeze

After two alien episodes, "Squeeze" solidified the ability of The X-Files to deliver something good each week. Alien stories would probably run dry eventually, but pulling from a vast pool of supernatural beings--in this case, a creature who can stretch--expands the universe infinitely and has episodes and episodes of story ready to be filled. In general, The X-Files is remembered for aliens and Mulder and Scully. Overlooked most of the time are the excellent standalone episodes that stood up to the mytharc episodes and had a broader range than the mytharc episodes. They could be creepy, horrifying, and in the later seasons, cleverly funny.

The first of many monster of the week episodes, "Squeeze" is one of the scariest episodes of the series in no small part of the incredible Doug Hutchison. His empty stare and lack of movement is scary enough, but then he also switches to attack mode on a dime, ferociously going after his victims.

As it turns out, Eugene Victor Tooms is some kind of genetic mutant who hibernates for 30 years after eating 5 livers. His crimes date back to 1933 which bring Mulder and Scully to the original arresting officer and Tooms's nest. Tooms, who spots them in his lair, trails Scully back to her house where he attacks her. Luckily, Mulder is there to save her.

Like the previous episodes, "Squeeze" ends unresolved with Tooms staring out the peephole, clear foreshadowing that he'll be back, and he does show up again later this season.

The most interesting development is Scully's alienation and ostracization from the Bureau mainstream. She first gets the case from a colleague named Tom Colton who doesn't like Mulder but trusts her. Slowly but surely, we see that trust degrade as Scully backs Mulder and I'd say that Colton turns slightly into a caricature, refusing to look at empirical evidence in all attempts to bash Mulder and in effect, Scully.

I'm rolling through these episodes on pace, so I'll try to do another 2 today.

Score: 9.3/10
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