Dee Discusses: The X-Files 1.13

Posted: February 10, 2013 by Dee in Dee, General Media, Recaps, Television, X-Files
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Now this was an interesting episode. I found a lot to like about it, but this is one of those rare cases I’d rather just get into the description and reflect on my thoughts at the end. “Beyond the Sea” starts out with Scully having a dinner with her parents, the first time we’ve seen them, and she wakes up to see her father sitting there mouthing words. She gets up when the phone rings and hears that her father died. There’s a lot of recorded stories of people saying they’ve seen or heard their loved ones when they were in the middle of dying or afterward. Scully brings this up later, but I knew that, so I was on board that idea from the beginning. I was waiting for this show to deal more with the afterlife outside of the ghost story we saw before. This was a personal situation for Scully, who has always been the skeptic.

She wants to get back to work instead of mulling over what happened. Their case is about two teenagers who were kidnapped and are missing. This happened before and the previous victims were murdered, so they only have a few days to find them. There seem to be no leads. Mulder says that a serial killer named Boggs who he helped catch claims to have psychic abilities and knows where the kids are. For once, Mulder’s the skeptic and insists Boggs has no abilities. But he does believe he could be working with the kidnapper in an attempt to use that to get out of jail. He proves it by giving Boggs a piece of clothing that he says was from the kid, but it turns out to be an ordinary fabric. Boggs went through a whole act about seeing the future, and Mulder thinks he’s got him. Scully is shaken when he hears Boggs humming Beyond the Sea, the song that was important to her parents, and he calls her Starbuck like her father did.

On the road, Scully starts to see landmarks that remind her of what Boggs said. She follows the clues and finds the warehouse that the kidnapper was at before. Now Scully does believe Boggs has abilities, although she’s fighting against that feeling with all of her might, and Mulder is adamant Boggs does not. He’s too blinded by his hatred of the man. They try to trick him again with a fake newspaper stating the kids have been found, but he doesn’t buy it and calls Mulder to say so. He gives them more psychic clues, and following those they do find them but the killer escapes after shooting Mulder. Scully gets emotional about Mulder’s injury and screams at Boggs, but he says again that he is psychic and he can give her a message to her father. He’ll help if they set him free, but the DA is having none of that.

Thanks to Boggs’ last clues, they finally get the kidnapper, although he falls to his death when a gantry falls with him on it. Scully almost was on it too, but she remembered Boggs tell her not to be taken in by the devil and that saves her life. She’s shaken. Boggs is executed and before that walks in a hallway seeing tons of ghosts. It’s very strange. I think that means he was psychic after all … or delusional. Scully believes now he was in on it and he couldn’t hear ghosts, and Mulder asks her why it’s so hard for her to believe. Maybe because you kept telling her not to believe all episode, Mulder. Of course only people you like or think works can be psychics, not people you dislike. I think the show leaves it ambiguous whether Boggs was the real deal or not. Personally due to that last shot of him being haunted in the hallways, I’d say that he is. At least I’d prefer it that way, because it would just be perfect if the one time Mulder refused to believe he was completely wrong.

This was a great episode and really got into some depth with Scully. It’s the first time we’ve delved a lot into her life. Her relationship with her father was a complicated one and we could see that from just a few scenes. She’s struggled all season with the things she’s seen and what that means in a greater sense, and this time she really seemed to make a break through, until the end. But there is a part of her that believed, which means her mind is opening, albeit slowly. I think it was funny to see the roles reversed and also for Scully to see how frustrating it is when the other person refuses to believe you. This was great acting by everyone. I didn’t like Boggs at first, I thought he was overdone, but by the end I was on board his portrayal. I think this did have a little Silence of the Lambs vibe to it, except Boggs wasn’t as intelligent as Hannibal. If  you believe he’s psychic, he wasn’t playing a game so much as trying to save himself. If you don’t believe he’s psychic, he’s closer to Hannibal and was manipulating to his benefit. Either way he was interesting and a good villain of the tale.

  1. lawrence says:

    This was the first episode I watched that *really* wowed me. I mean, I was certainly on board before, but I felt ‘Beyond the Sea’ really raised things to another level. The acting was just incredible.

    I read the scene between Scully and Mulder at the end as him essentially admitting to her that he *did* believe Boggs the whole time, but told her not to because he believed no good would come of it.


  2. This is seriously my second favorite episode of the first season, the way the roles are switched and how they really mess with Scully in this is brilliant… I can never not hear the song “Beyond the Sea” and not think of this episode…


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