wendelah1: (Jersey Devil)
[personal profile] wendelah1 posting in [community profile] xfilesficrecs
"Come on, Scully, it’ll be a nice trip to the forest."

Fox Mulder, of all people, should know there is no such thing, at least not on this show. Even if the teaser hadn't shown us what's waiting for them up in Washington State, Mulder's invitation to Scully would feel ominous. In folklore and fairytales, the forest is occasionally a magical refuge, but more often it's a place of mystery and danger. Hansel and Gretel get sent into the woods to die, and they nearly do. So do Mulder and Scully.

By the time our heroes arrive at the logging site, there are already so many competing agendas that it's hard to tell whose side we're supposed to be on. Steve Humphreys, head of security for the logging company is understandably upset about the 30 men who've gone missing, but not so concerned about the large growth trees his employer may have illegally harvested. The environmentalist Doug Spinney as much as admits he cares more about the trees than about the lives of the missing men. By the end, all of the loggers are presumed dead and none of the so-called eco-terrorists have made it out alive. It seems Mother Nature doesn't care whether you're on her side or not.

Luckily for Mulder and Scully and Ranger Larry, "ecoterrorist" Spinney not only kept his word to Mulder and came back for them in his jeep, he managed to call for help. Though Spinney is eaten alive, as Mulder, Scully and the ranger look helplessly on, help arrives in time to save the rest of them.

The good. The scenery is breathtaking, some of the most beautiful ever filmed by the series, despite the horrendous weather conditions during production. The forests near Vancouver made for a perfect stand-in for Olympic National Forrest in Washington State. The mites are creepy. Those giant cocoons are really creepy.

The bad. There are some giant plot-holes. If the mites were repelled by light, why didn't the loggers just build a fire? Why didn't the investigating team? It's not like there was a shortage of wood. And Spinney was attacked by mites while he was standing right in front of the headlights of the jeep. If, as Mulder suspects, the loggers who disappeared in 1934 were also killed by the mites, why didn't those earlier swarms propagate, spread and kill more people?

The ugly. I found it impossible to believe that Doctor Scully didn't already know about tree rings. And I don't see why Scully had to be made to look like an idiot to convey information to the audience that any ten-year-old should already have learned in school. Given the circumstances, I thought the investigative team went into the wilderness woefully unprepared for what they might encounter, from sabotage to flat tires. Well, there's dumb, and there's dumber, and then there is The X-Files.

FANFICTION RECS:

In 2015, I read or skimmed everything that's listed in the spoilers section at Gossamer as well as what came up via AO3 and Google search. I don't like hurt/comfort fic on general principles, plus I can't imagine a less promising scenario for romance than nearly being eaten alive by mites. (shudders).

This year, I found something to rec! Since 2015, Scullywolf has been writing a series of missing scene fics., beginning shortly after season ten was announced. She's up to Je Souhaite. If she keeps going, maybe I'll start [tumblr.com profile] 201daysofxfiles up again with season eight.

Darkness Falls (1935 words) by scullywolf
Chapters: 2/2
Fandom: The X-Files
Rating: Not Rated
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Fox Mulder/Dana Scully
Characters: Fox Mulder, Dana Scully
Additional Tags: Missing Scene, MSR, UST
Series: Part 20 of TXF: Scenes in Between


And one truly amazing piece of art. Truly: Stand Aside, I'm a Medical Doctor by Suzanne Flash.
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