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The X-Files - 'En Ami'
By Kenneth Silber
Opinions Editor
posted: 07:10 pm ET
16 June 2000

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Scully goes for a long drive in the countryside with Cigarette Smoking Man (CSM), who claims to have turned over a new leaf.

(originally aired March 19, 2000)

Quotable Moments


SCULLY: You're not just a cold blooded killer. You're a pop psychologistas well.

CSM: I've been a destroyer all my life. Before I die, I'd like to prove I'm capable of something more.


   More Stories

'The X-Files' - 'En Ami' (spoilers)


The X-Files - 'Theef'


The X-Files- 'First Person Shooter'


The X-Files - 'X-Cops'

   Related Links

The X-Files (official)

Written by William B. Davis
Directed by Rob Bowman

GUEST STARS

William B. Davis - The Cigarette Smoking Man
Dean Haglund - Langly
Bruce Harwood - Byers
Tom Braidwood - Frohike
Michael Canavan - Cameron McPeck
Jacqueline Schultz - Irene McPeck
Cory Parravano - Jason McPeck
Thomas Roe - Guard
Louise Latham - Marjorie Butters
Tom Bailey - Apartment Manager
Timothy Landfield - Scientist/Cobra
Michael Shamus Wiles - Black-Haired Man

WHAT HAPPENED

Virginia. A car. A man is driving. In the back seat are his wife and 11-year-old son Jason. The father tries to reassure the kid that "names will never hurt" him. Approaching their house, they drive through a gauntlet of protestors, overseen by police.

That evening, the parents put the kid to bed. The father says soothingly that, despite what the protestors demand, it would be wrong to bring the ailing kid to a hospital -- against God's will. "If you are to be well, in body and spirit, it's God who must come and deliver you," Dad says.

At 2:14 a.m., Jason awakens. He sees a bright light and trees bending outside his window. He stands, mouth agape. Men are walking toward him, in the light. They're wearing suits. (more spoilers)

ANALYSIS

The Cigarette Smoking Man has long been an intriguing character. He is villainous, but is he irredeemably so? He has power, but just how much? "En Ami" raises such questions anew.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the episode provides few answers. And the ending, with its high degree of ambiguity, provides little satisfaction. This reviewer, for one, is puzzled about both CSM's physical condition and his state of mind.

Nonetheless, "En Ami" is a welcome departure from the recent spate of dismal standalone episodes that saw Mulder and Scully absorbed in some of the series' most pointless activities ever, including some sophomoric computer gaming and an inane romp through Los Angeles with the crew of "Cops."

WHAT WE LEARN

CSM enjoys a night on the town with Scully, and seems pretty comfortable pumping gas.

DANGLING PLOT THREADS

Did the computer disc contain anything remotely approaching CSM's claims for it? And if so, what are the implications of its aqueous fate?

Was Scully's presence really necessary for CSM to perform his machinations, or did he mainly want her companionship?

REALITY CHECK

CSM's friend looked remarkably healthy for 118. Nonetheless, some reputable aging researchers probably would find such a scenario not overly implausible.

TUNE IN NEXT WEEK

For a rerun of "X-Cops". While chasing a monster in Los Angeles, Mulder and Scully are videotaped for television.


What do you think? Send comments to the author or editor.


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