The X-Files (1993) – The Jersey Devil, and Shadows

The first x-files this week takes us to the New Jersey part of Vancouver as writer and series creator Chris Carter has FBI agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) investigate the urban legend of the Jersey Devil. Consequently, a monster of the week episode, and not a mythology one.

That doesn’t mean continuity isn’t at work, as the episode introduces Mulder’s porn leanings.

The Jersey Devil originally aired on 8 October, 1993. When a homeless man is found with an arm chewed off, Mulder pulls a similar x-file from 1947, which gives them jurisdiction in the investigation and off they go.

Mulder clashes with local authority, while Scully heads back to D.C. to help out at her god son’s birthday party (the only time the character is mentioned) and then goes on a date (one of only three she has, or we hear about in the entire run of the series! That’s an x-file in itself!).

As Mulder investigates, and lands himself in jail, he tracks the ‘devil’ only to learn that it is a member of a family group of humans, who are uncivilised, and live like animals in the forests. As urban sprawl encroaches on their habitat, they are forced to venture into the edges of the city for food, and thus into conflict with the rest of humanity.

So no supernatural or paranormal elements at work here, but Mulder is able to close the file. It’s still a solid first season episode, and continues to develop the characters and their growing relationship.

Watch for a brief guest appearance by Gregory Sierra, a professor who gives Mulder and Scully some relevant information.

Shadows was written at the behest of studio executives that wanted more ‘traditional’ paranormal events. Written by Glen Morgan and James Wong, this episode first aired on 22 October, 1993.

It also does Scully an incredible disservice in order to maintain her sceptical leanings. At the climax of the episode, she is temporarily waylaid by her seat belt. Sigh.

The pair are approached by another pair of agents in need of some help when they are investigating the apparent murder of two men with terrorist ties, they are emitting an electromagnetic discharge and their throats have been crushed.

CCTV cameras allows them to track the incident to Lauren Kyte (Lisa Waltz). It seems Lauren has been having some problems of late. She’s recently quite her job when she was devastated by the apparent suicide of her boss, Howard Graves. For her, he was a father figure, and perhaps he’s still looking after her.

And asking her to prove his death wasn’t suicide, but murder.

Of course, Mulder is there to witness some spooky events, and is ready to believe that it was Graves’ ghost watching over Lauren, and guiding her to the answers of who murdered him.

More casework Thursday as we dig deeper into The X-Files.

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