4×18: Max

“What are these people dying for? Is it for the truth or for the lies?” — Dana Scully
“It’s got to be for the truth. If we owe them anything, it’s to make sure of that.” — Fox Mulder

The mystery surrounding Max Fenig’s abduction and death deepens, as the hunt for an alien artifact carries on.

20th Century Fox via Chrisnu

20th Century Fox via Chrisnu

Radhika: Generally speaking, “Tempus Fugit” and “Max” are well-remembered episodes of The X-Files’ mythology, with plenty of iconic abduction imagery and heightening intrigue surrounding the conspiracies that Mulder and Scully always find themselves investigating. But in retrospect, I wonder if the storyline could have been wrapped up in one tight episode because in all honesty, while I enjoyed “Tempus Fugit,” I could feel my eyes glazing over during a couple of scenes here. The mythology felt pretty logical up through “Memento Mori,” but I feel there’s a bit of a shakiness in this episode that may indicate the beginning of the convolutions found in later seasons.

The episode picks up where the last left off: Mulder is apprehended by a group of commandos after diving to the bottom of a lake to find an alien spacecraft. And Scully is trying to save the injured Agent Pendrell after he was accidentally shot — poor Pendrell goes on to die off camera, so no happy ending there. Meanwhile, U.S. Air Force air traffic controller Louis Frish is being arrested for false testimony. The official explanation for the crash is that a military fighter craft was mistakenly put on a collision course with Flight 549. But Mulder is more convinced that the crashed UFO he found underwater was involved. Continue reading


4×17: Tempus Fugit

“These men, no. These men are trained to identify moving parts. Hydraulics, electronics. They’re trained to reconstruct those parts and the past and arrive at the present. But they can’t do that because somebody has stolen the past from them. Nine minutes of it. Nine minutes that became a lifetime for those passengers, and now for their families. Someone has got to figure out what happened in those nine minutes. Somehow, we’ve got to get them back.” – Fox Mulder

Mulder and Scully are roped into the investigation of what happened to a crashed airliner when they learn that an old friend was on that flight, potentially carrying some dangerous material…

Tempus Fugit

20th Century Fox via Chrisnu

Max: “Tempus Fugit” kicks off the spring two-parter of mythology episodes with perhaps one of the most unusual entries in the overall puzzle. Bringing back the beleaguered Max Fenig from season one’s excellent “Fallen Angel,” the cold open is a cacophony of paranoia and horror, with Max being threatened by a mysterious man, but then finding himself with bigger fish to fry as the tell tale sign of bright white lights flood the plane he is on, causing intense turbulence as he braces for another of his many abductions.

This is contrasted by the post-credits scene of Mulder and Scully at a bar, where he surprises her with a cake and waitstaff serenade, managing to remember her birthday this year (with a gift to boot!). Still, this jubilation is predictably short lived as a woman claiming to be Max’s sister Sharon interrupts them and tells them that she was instructed to find our heroes if Max didn’t survive his flight. Continue reading

1×10: Fallen Angel

“I didn’t think anyone was really paying attention.” – Fox Mulder
“Somebody’s always paying attention Mr. Mulder.” – Max Fenig

Going rogue on reports of something extraordinary happening in the woods of Wisconsin, Mulder gets in way over his head and in very hot water. Scully must help to salvage his career while a reclamation of a different type is underway…

Fallen Angel

20th Century Fox via Chrisnu

Max: Another disparate piece of the mythology puzzle is dropped onto the playing field in an incredibly thrilling episode. Much like “Shadows” did, “Fallen Angel” uses the story of one character, Max Fenig (wonderful name by the way) as the core of an episode filled to the brim with governmental and military intrigue surrounding the downing of a UFO and the attempt to capture its occupant. Continue reading