The X-Files 2.0: “Founder’s Mutation”


I guess that the one thing that this revisit will have in spades is feels. Or I guess this episode did.

Scully and Mulder are assigned to the case of a scientist who apparently committed suicide. After they learn that he was working with children who have severe genetic anomalies, Mulder becomes convinced that the mothers of these children are being tested on by the government.

While at the victims apartment, Mulder has what can best be described as an episode where he hears a high pitched voice in his head telling him to “find her.” He doesn’t know what it means, but he also doesn’t tell Skinner about it and even Scully has to pry it out of him.

In the end it turns out that a child, the child of the head of the experiments in fact, crawled out of his mother’s womb in order to survive and escape from his father. He’s then adopted and raised fairly normally, but he decides to find his sister. He does. Also, he causes his father to bleed out the eyes.

You know. Standard story.

The case doesn’t cause the feels. The feels come because of William. Both Mulder and Scully have a series of fantasies, I guess? When confronted with the mothers in the experiment, Mulder calls them incubators. Scully takes this to heart, and asks him if that’s what he thought of her, and if he ever thought about William. She remarks that he’s fifteen, and that she’s missed each and every one of his birthdays.

My heart…I can’t take it.

He assures her that he does, everyday. It’s not clear if she believes him but that prompts her to have her first fantasy. Taking William to school one day. It’s a pleasant and every day interaction. Then she has another one, rushing to his side when he broke an arm. And then finally, going up into his room to find his face mutated and alien, begging her to tell him what’s wrong with him.

It’s wrenching and tough to watch. But it was Mulder’s fantasy that got me crying. Mulder and William watching 2001: A Space Odyssey together, and William asking him about the meaning of The Monolith. William and Mulder lighting off model rockets in the middle of a field. And finally, Mulder running into William’s bedroom only for him to be carried off, the same way Samantha was.

And so there it was. My heart, completely and thoroughly broken. I knew that William would be brought up. Hoped, in fact, that this rather large element of Mulder and Scully’s relationship would be spoken about. And I had a feeling that it would break my heart. But it got right at me, and seeing the life that these two never got to have is absolutely awful.

Again, only one Skinner scene. Not enough, but it’s a good one. As a bureaucrat tries to shut down Scully and Mulder, he rolls his eyes and tells them to go ahead anyway.

Never change, Walter.

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