The X-Files (1999) – Rush, and The Goldberg Variation

Mulder (David Duchovny) and Scully (Gillian Anderson) are called to a small town to investigate a strange murder of a deputy in Rush. Written by David Amann, this episode first debuted on 5 December, 1999.

It seems a young man, Max (Scott Cooper), the son of the local sheriff (Tom Bower), is Mulder’s prime suspect in the murder, even though he can’t prove anything yet, as there seems to be no real evidence of him doing anything. It all happens too fast.

Max, and his two friends, Tony (Rodney Scott) and Chastity (Nicki Aycox) are a close group, and Max is ready to introduce Tony into something incredible. In a cave, buried under the earth, is a strange substance, something that accelerates Max, gives him great speed, and strength to go with it. But he can’t keep it in check, he’s an angry young man, and it looks like the bodies are going to pile up.

It’s a fun episode, once it gets going, and watching Mulder go toe to toe with angry, sarcastic teens.

The cause of the speed isn’t explained or delved into, and no one will get answers as the government seals up the cave. Instead, it’s just a story about growing up, making the right decisions, and being responsible, tough things for a teenager to deal with, especially when they are suddenly gifted with a new life with new abilities.

A solid, one off episode that lets Mulder and Scully get away from the mythology arc for moment or two.

The Goldberg Variation features Willie Garson and a young Shia LaBeouf in this episode written by Jeffrey Bell. This story first hit the airwaves on 12 December, 1999.

Mulder and Scully head to Chicago to investigate reports of a man being thrown off the top of a twenty-nine storey building and walking away unscathed. The investigation leads them to Henry Weems (Garson) who seems to be unnaturally lucky, with a number of seemingly unrelated events and incidents leading up to a successful, seemingly improbable solution.

Cause and effect, as Mulder points out.

As the agents try to figure things out they learn that Weems is working as a building manager/handyman for an apartment building and has fostered a friendship with a sick young boy, Richie (LaBeouf) and Weems efforts, all of them to gather some cash, may have something to do with the events and incidents that aremoving the character forward.

It’s a little eccentric, but as the story progresses, there’s a great heart at its centre, and that elevates the episode and it delights me that we are so early in the seventh season, so this just hints at great things to come, because, like I say every week, the truth is out there…

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