Season 8 starts our brand spanking new title scene introduction. Robert Patrick’s name has been added to the credits and instead of the classic imagery, we have clips of Doggett and Scully, a baby and a rather cheesy picture of Mulder falling into darkness.
Also we have no custom tag line on season 8. So Scully is having a personal crisis about being pregnant, and heads to work to find Mulder’s office is being cleared out and searched. She instantly has a go at Skinner who’s just heard about it himself. The order came from Deputy Director Kersh. He states that Mulder’s disappearance is still a priority for the FBI and that a team has been set up to locate him.
Kersh asks Scully and Skinner to head down to see the task force leader – Special Agent John Doggett and give statements. He also cautions them that anyone speaking of aliens, abductions and anything else relating to Mulder’s life will mean they can forget about looking for Mulder, and can start looking for new jobs. Skinner is on the receiving end of the stick when he tells Scully he can’t lie about what he saw – the UFO flying over his head. Scully warns him that they’ll just hang him with the truth.
Skinner goes off to give his statement while Scully waits – sitting next to a man who’s asking about Mulder. He basically lies to Scully stating that they want to interview him too, and that he knew Mulder from way back. He goes on to say that maybe Mulder staged his own disappearance because the X-Files was under threat from the FBI. He really pisses Scully off when he suggests that Mulder never trusted her, and that he’s been speaking to other women about how un-trusting Scully is!
She states that this guy never knew Mulder and turns his badge over to reveal it’s John Doggett! With that, she stands and throws a cup of water on him, leaving the room. When Scully’s at home, she calls Mummy Scully for some help and advice, only to notice a man standing outside her window. Instantly she’s on the phone to Doggett giving threats on unlawful surveillance, when she attempts to see who it is.
She runs into her landlord who states there was someone in the building…. he thinks it was Mulder. Returning to her apartment, she notices her computer is gone. Scully heads to Mulder’s apartment to notice his computer has recently been taken too. She heads into his bedroom, where she curls up to one of his shirts, and falls asleep on his bed, only to be woken by Doggett.
Meanwhile, we see a clip of Mulder being held captive on an alien ship, hooks are pulling his face back, and random probes are heading into his nostrils and eyes, tools also start drilling into his teeth as he screams in pain. It’s not clear if this is Scully’s dream or actually happening. But it’s worth mentioning. Skinner confides in the Lone Gunmen to break into some databases (as they do) and they get information on UFO sightings at the same time Mulder went missing.
They notice a pattern, and know that the UFO was only stopping by, the ship is moving towards a target of some sort. Doggett asks Kersh if he’s the only one running the search for Mulder. His wits tell him there may be some other department in the way. It’s now when we first see Doggett may have a back bone after all! Scully wakes in Mulder’s apartment explaining to Mulder she’s this to feed the fish (again). They have a little argument but he shows her respect by sharing some information.
He has car rental receipts showing he’s going to visit some place. Scully cant seem to identify them. Next up Skinner is being questioned about some files went missing from the task force office, someone used Agent Mulder’s ID card to gain access and took them. Skinner finds Mulder’s credit card was used to sent flowers to his mother two days ago, they also get a delivery Mulder requested of Mulder’s headstone! Doggett gives Scully some medical records from Mulder’s file – around the time when Mulder was committed while going insane at the beginning of Season 7, it doesn’t seem he made a full recovery.
After looking over the files, it seems whatever happened to Mulder back then has been killing him ever since and that he had been going to doctors ever since. Doggett suggests that since he knew he was dying, he found himself in a place that nothing was proven and hadn’t changed anything – so he could cover his work up. Skinner flips and lets slip that it was a UFO he saw. Scully begs Doggett not to report what Skinner said. Meanwhile, the Lone Gunmen, Skinner and Scully all brainstorm over the data of abductions they have – Scully works it out.
She states the aliens are the one removing all the proof but they cannot find the one thing they’ve been looking for all along – the one proof no one can deny – Gibson! The chess playing freak who can read minds and is part alien. Doggett also gets a copy of Gibson’s file slipped under his door. They now know Gibson’s file was the one’s taken from the office. They head out to Arizona where Gibson was last seen – because Gibson is the last thing left that can let Mulder prove his work. While on the way, Scully notices a strange cloaking shield similar to what she witnessed in Oregon. They find Gibson is attending a school for the deaf. He’s put aside for Agent Doggett’s arrival.
Gibson anticipates their arrival and they can’t find him. After fanning out Doggett bumps into Scully and Skinner who are also looking for Gibson. They all start looking around the area.
Doggett follows two tracks – the boys and another man up to the ledge nearby, his gun drawn he shouts to Mulder…. to release Gibson. End of Part 1.