wendelah1: Scully petting Mulder's head in Little Green Men (Mulder | Scully headpet)
[personal profile] wendelah1 posting in [community profile] xfilesficrecs
I want to love this episode. And there are things I love in "Little Green Men," but damn it, the plot is so full of holes. And, a Mulder who's acting self-absorbed and peevish is not my favorite Mulder.

I enjoyed meeting Senator Matheson, played by Raymond Jay Barry, whom some of you may recognize as Arlo Givens on Justified. But, thanks to the writers, he's sending Mulder off on a wild goose chase. If the SETI project at Arecibo has been shut down, why would there be anything there to see? "Contact," Matheson whispers seductively to Mulder. Come on, guys. What part of "shut down" do these writers not understand? And why on earth would anyone send in the Blue Berets Crash Retrieval Team? What are they going to be shooting at, the computers? The recording equipment? How would the military know there was contact in the first place if the project has been shut down? Since the observatory itself is still in operation, there is no reason for Mulder to break into it. This is a big facility, full of expensive equipment, so I'm pretty sure that they've got more than one guy working security, and a better fence to keep out intruders. This is nonsensical even for The X-Files.

Meanwhile back at the FBI, Scully's been hauled into Skinner's office and questioned about Mulder's disappearance. Apparently, she's still supposed to know where he is at all times, even though she's no longer his partner. If keeping track of Mulder is so important, how did he manage to get all the way to Arecibo without anyone noticing until he failed to show up at work? The normal way for a federal employee with accumulated leave to handle an unexpected need for days off would be to call in sick. Going AWOL just calls attention to his absence. Mulder is smarter than that. I do love how, instead of sending out the cavalry to find Mulder, they just start following Scully around. "She'll find him," the CSM says confidently. And so she does. Unfortunately, the stress of the journey causes Doctor Scully to forget her basic training. After shining a light in Mulder's eyes and waking him up, she tells him that she was sure he was dead. Why would she assume that—and why would she say that to him? Next time she should first try checking his pulse.

As an aside, Gillian Anderson looks so pregnant now. If you hit pause at the right moment in the scene where they're running for the truck, you can spot her baby belly.

These writers cannot create a coherent plot to save their souls yet they hit all of the emotional notes perfectly. The scene in Mulder's office at the end is so adorable. "You still have nothing," Scully sympathizes.

But Mulder has had some time to think things through. "I still have my work," he says, not meeting her eyes. "I still have you. I still have myself." Scully ruffling his hair as she leaves is a lovely touch. The final shot of Mulder listening to the blank tape for any hint of proof is perfect, too.

No rec list of fanfic set during the early seasons is complete without "Universal Invariants." Yes, you've all heard of the story and most of you have probably read it, too. If you are like me, you've read it more than once, especially Chapter 12. *cough* In "Universal Invariants," syntax6 takes the canon from season one and early season two, adds an au twist, throws in a tasty casefile, mixes in plenty of UST, Mulder/Scully banter, and some angsty relationship stuff, and presents us with a fanfiction classic.

"Universal Invariants" by syntax6
Spoilers: all of season one and season two through "One Breath"
Summary: Here's the premise: what if Ethan's scene hadn't been cut out of the pilot and Scully had been allowed to have a life of her own, apart from Mulder and the X-files? How would the storyline have been changed? How would it have stayed the same? Wendelah note: The summary is mine, not the author's.

Author's note: I don't really classify fics because my labels don't often match what readers expect, so I am leaving all keywords off here. You clicks your mouse, and you takes your chance. The story will likely stray toward NC-17 territory for sexuality, violence and adult themes. Minors please read elsewhere.

My next rec has a very different take on early Mulder and Scully. I'm linking to the post at LJ because the comments are interesting and insightful, even mine. *g* This is an original and striking episode tag for "Little Green Men."

"In the Fields of Boaz" by Crinolynne
Rating: G
Spoilers: Little Green Men
Summary: He's still not sure what she's doing here, her presence a Fortean event.

One last rec. I'm placing "Hollow Day" here because it deals with the vagaries of memory, in particular, what Mulder recalls about his sister's abduction and its aftermath. I must warn you: this is not the usual, cheery, feel-good holiday story, nor is it the sort of story we've come to expect from Kel. There are not many fic writers who can create believable, compelling original characters the way Kel can. Her narrator, now an adult with children of her own, recalls a traumatic day she spent at the Mulders, specifically the Thanksgiving immediately following Samantha's abduction.

"Hollow Day" by Kel
DISCLAIMER: Though they are with me, they belong not to me.
SUMMARY: October 1973. Think Watergate. Think oil embargo. Think Samantha.
SPOILERS: Through Season 6.
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