4×21: Zero Sum

“I have lied to you, and I won’t make excuses for those lies, but there’s a reason that I did what I did – one that I think you’re in a unique position to understand. I advised you against a certain course of action some time ago … concerning Agent Scully. I didn’t follow my own advice.” – Walter Skinner

Skinner impedes and assists Mulder’s investigation into the death of a postal worker. Nicholas Cage, be afraid, be very very afraid…

Zero Sum

20th Century Fox via Chrisnu

Max: “Zero Sum,” while not exploring AD Walter Skinner’s life outside of the Bureau like in last season’s “Avatar,” is a perfect continuation of seeing the forces that make this man tick. The episode also bridges the gaps between elements of the mythology that will be brought to bear as we wrap up this fourth season. As we saw in “Memento Mori,” a desperate and concerned Skinner made a deal with the devil (well, the CSM) and here we see the results of the bargain as he is tasked to clean up the death of a postal worker who died as the result of lethal bee stings, which begins with him deleting files sent by a police officer off of Mulder’s computer.

We’ve seen the bees as a mythology plot device be introduced at the very start of this season, but here they become the primary menace, killing and incapacitating their victims with a form of the smallpox virus. Continue reading