Now we reach the end of season 5. It was at this time when Chris Carter was counting his pennies and proud of his few years work. The X-Files movie is after this, which was originally intended to bring things to a close… little did they know at the time just how long it would go on for.
But still, what could possibly leave us hanging off our seat so much more then previous season finals…. Let’s find out. It’s quite clear from the beginning that this episode was intended to be ‘the end’, when the episode starts with a chess tournament between a little kid and some chess master who then gets assassinated. Agent Spender has been assigned the case to figure out what happened, the order of which came from very high up.
Meanwhile, we see Cigarette smoking man (with an indication he had a heart bypass operation in the past) living in his little hut in Canada, when suddenly two men come to get him. One of which gets shot in the face, the other catches up with him… Krycek informs smoking man he’s there not to kill… but to bring him back. On returning to the security council he learns that well manicured man needs him to take care of something… the intended target was the little kid, not the chess player.
Mulder figures this out at Spenders briefing and is supported by Dianne – some woman Mulder used to work with when he profiled killers. What’s instantly interesting is the tension between Scully and Dianne when they go to interview the kid.. Mulder figures out that the kid ‘Gibson’, isn’t such a master chess player… he wins by reading his opponents mind. A small demonstration of this reveals that Mulder is thinking about one of the women in the room (Scully or Dianne), and that one of them is thinking about him too. When Dianne asks which one, Gibson replies ‘He doesn’t want me to say’, looking at Mulder.
It’s this suspicious nature that brings Scully to the Lone Gunmen, and asking for help with Gibson’s tests, she also asks what they know about Dianne… They inform Scully that Mulder and Dianne go back to his first days out of the academy. Meanwhile the shooters been caught and it trying to bargain with Mulder, since he knows as well as Mulder he failed in killing the kid.. and they’ll be coming for him.
He’s right when the killer receives a cigarette packet through his cell, telling him he’s a dead man. A while later, he’s shot in his cell. Smoking man then approaches Spender – this is the first time they’ve ever met. He offers him help on the case, since he assigned it to him. Spender ignores these claims and doesn’t really take interest in smoking man. It’s not until Scully runs more tests on the kid and learns the truth. This kid has more genes and extra DNA strands then any other human alive.. he is quite literately living proof that alien\human hybrid’s exist.
Mulder wants to take this straight to the district attorney along with the shooter to testify what the kid is… Skinner reminds Mulder that if this doesn’t work out, they will most likely take the X-Files from him.. his life’s work would be discredited beyond repair and there would be nothing Skinner can do. Sure of his proof Mulder goes ahead with it. Then it all goes wrong. Dianne is shot when looking after Gibson, who then goes missing, Mulder learns of the shooters death and then he catches Spender talking to Smoking man!
Mulder pops his top once again and attacks Spender, after finding the cigarette wrapping in his cell, and witnessing Spender talking to him.. Accusing Spender of collaborating with the enemy, Mulder informs him ‘Your going down’. With the kid in Well manicured man’s and Krycek’s custody, they contemplate running down Smoking man on the way out, however decide against it, knowing he can be useful. Since all the evidence has gone, the DA is rather pissed off, and reassignment talks our under way for Mulder and Scully. Skinner informs then that the X-Files have been terminated (once again). Smoking man walks into Mulder’s office, thumbs through the X-Files and removes one folder… Samantha Fox’s. It’s then he is challenged on leaving FBI central where he bumps into Spender, Spender asks who he is.. to which smoking man replies “I’m your father”. A rather tense and confusing moment for Spender is interrupted by the fire alarm going off. Mulder and Scully rush into work, head downstairs into the basement, only to find their office burnt to a crisp. The poster destroyed and all the files burnt.
As Mulder looks around in disbelief and shock, they hold each other, unsure of the future that awaits.
This is quite truly a great episode, and you can tell it was an attempt to wrap most things up. However there’s so much more to come.