The X-Files (2002) – Sunshine Days, and The Truth

The penultimate episode of the ninth season is all about family, in a roundabout way. Written by Vince Gilligan, who also directed it, it first aired on 12 May, 2002.

When a body is recovered from a location that sometimes appears to be the Brady house from The Brady Bunch television show, Doggett (Robert Patrick), Reyes (Annabeth Gish), and Scully (Gillian Anderson) get closer than every to proving some paranormal claims, as they discover a man, Oliver Martin (Michael Emerson), who has a powerful and amazing gift… if he can control it.

It’s fun, light, showing Gilligan’s flair for sharp writing, and storytelling. It’s the last relaxed breath before the giant hour and a half season (then series) finale. The episode features a little bit of shoddy green screen work, while also delivering some solid photo double work for the Bradys, and a great sequence featuring Doggett stuck on the ceiling.

After nine years, Scully got close to actual proof, and was ready to present it, but to save Oliver, he needed something else, a family, which would mean no longer using his abilities. But at least they got to experience something amazing!

It’s fun, but I also imagine that Mulder would have a bit more fun with it, but it was fun to see how much Scully and Reyes knew about The Brady Bunch. But now, enough blathering. Let’s see how the series ended, the first time it finished.

The Truth was written by series creator Chris Carter, and was a two hour finale event on 19 May, 2002. All of the story threads are attempted to be tied up, onscreen deaths occur, though as Carter reminds us true evil never dies, and everything is laid out as plainly as it can be.

Mulder (David Duchovny) returns and is captured by the military after infiltrating one of their secret bases, and supposedly killing a marine, Knowle Rohrer (Adam Baldwin) – who we know is a super-soldier and can’t really die.

The bureau and the military see an opportunity, however, to try Mulder in secret (in a jumped up military court with no record being kept) with his life hanging in the balance. Mulder asks Skinner (Mitch Pileggi) to defend him, while Scully, Doggett and Reyes seek out a way to help him.

All the stops are pulled out as Mulder is visited (literally?) by the ghosts of the past, and young Gibson Praise (Jeff Gulka) comes out of hiding to help defend the former FBI agent, and reveal an alien agent. But it won’t be enough, and though Mulder is prepared to go down swinging (sentenced to lethal injection for the murder of Rohrer) he is helped to escape, and makes for one last confrontation with the ‘truth’ alongside Scully.

It’s a very exposition heavy, clip filled finale and there are some wonderful character and fan moments, but there are a few things that will be lost along the way when the story continues…

At the beginning of the episode we and Mulder learn the date of the supposed alien invasion, but after the poor performance of the second film, and the tenth series taking place after that date, that little story thread was left to wither.

I delight in knowing that there is still more to come, because, as always, the truth is out there…

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