Millennium (1997) – Wide Open, and The Wild and The Innocent

Frank Black (Lance Henriksen) steps back into the darkness this week as Charles D. Holland pens Wide Open, which first aired on 3 January, 1997.

Frank is called in to assist on a case that seems to defy logic, a series of murders taking place in homes with top of the line security systems. Cathy (Megan Gallagher), Frank’s wife, who works with Victim Services is involved as well when one of the murders leaves behind a little girl (Nevada Ash) who is suffering shock and trauma, but who the police believe can provide them with essential clues.

Cathy works to keep the child, Patricia, safe from the investigation, and Frank works on tracking down the killer with his own profiling skills instead of putting the little girl through the event again. This is a story that hits home with Cathy and Frank because Patricia is almost the same age as their own little girl, Jordan (Brittany Tiplady).

While a good episode, I didn’t get the feeling that there was as much profiling going into this story as there usually is in the series, but was more an episode to show us that we’re not as safe as we think we are. And also, how many serial killers are operating in Seattle? I know the series has taken us over the country, but a few of them seem to be at work in Frank’s town.

Also of note, Roger Cross, who has at this point shown up three times on The X-Files as different characters, makes an appearance as a police officer in this one.

The Wild and The Innocent is a different kind of case for Frank, and Peter Watts (Terry O’Quinn), who comes along to assist. Set in Missouri, this episode was penned by Jorge Zamacona and had an original airdate of 10 January, 1997. It features a guest appearance by Micheal Hogan, as the local sheriff.

Heather McComb who was featured in The X-Files episode, Die Hand Die Verletzt, plays a young woman, Maddie, who is on the run with her boyfriend, Bobby (Jeffrey Donovan) who has a bit of a violent streak, and has now killed a police officer.

Frank and Peter are called in when the car the pair are driving is linked to a serial killer Frank pursued while he was at the FBI. Is there a connection? To find out, Frank is going to have investigate Maddie’s family history, even as the young couple continue their violent rampage. Frank begins to suspect that the pair are looking for someone named Angel.

It focuses more on Maddie, and she provides lots of voice over as Frank reads her letters, and undergoes interrogation. It’s a quieter episode, even with its violent moment. The story is solid and Henriksen is, as always, absolutely captivating.

There will be more explorations into the darkness next week as Frank continues his work in Millennium.

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