22 March 2007

Season 2: Dod Kalm (2X19)

Story by: Howard Gordon
Teleplay by: Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa
Director: Rob Bowman

When the U.S.S. Ardent disappears off the Norwegian coast just below the 65th parallel, an area Mulder refers to as the second Bermuda Triangle, where nine other vessels have disappeared since 1949. Mulder arranges for Scully with her medical background to gain access to the sole survivor Lieutenant Richard Harper at the Bethsheda Naval Hospital in Maryland.

Scully is surprised to find that the 28 year old Harper is a wrinkly grey haired old man. Mulder believes it has something to do with the Philadelphia Experiment during World War II, a government project to render ships invisible to radar, which Mulder claims used technology recovered from the infamous Roswell Incident. Mulder and Scully travel to Norway to investigate, but find it difficult to get anyone to take them out to the area. Only Henry Trondheim captain of the local trawler Zeal is willing to take them.

They find the U.S.S. Ardent dead in the water, a rust covered old ship despite the fact that is was only commissioned in 1991. As they explore the ship the trawler Zeal is hijacked and sails away leaving them stranded on board. They encounter a local pirate whaler Olafssen, who seems unaffected by premature ageing. They realise his apparent immunity holds the key to the case. As Mulder and Scully begin to age rapidly Scully theorises that if the U.S.S. Ardent was drifting towards a meteorite on the ocean floor, the resulting electromagnetic energy could be exciting free-radicals, the elements believed to cause ageing.

'Dod Kalm' is an intended foreign-sounding version of "Dead Calm".

According to an interview with David Duchovny, he and Gillian Anderson could not stop laughing during the scene where Trondheim yells at the whaling pirate. "He kept yelling B'LEAVER! and we couldn't keep a straight face."

Mulder mentions that Scully's journal is almost of pages, but she keeps writing in it for at least 14 more hours (the time shown in the onscreen caption later) without seeming to use any more pages.

Fingernails take an average of 100 days to grow 1cm (ie. 0.1mm per day) but all of the people that aged on the USS Ardent had several centimeters of nail growth, but their hair (and beards for the men) had not grown or greyed at all during the same period.

Mulder: Scully, what do you know about the Philadelphia Experiment?
Scully: It was a programme during World War II, to render battleships invisible to radar.
Mulder: On July 8, 1944, the USS Eldridge did more than just hide from radar screens. It vanished from the Philadelphia Navy Yard... Only to reappear minutes later, hundred of miles away in Norfolk, Virgina.

Scully: Mulder...When they found me, after the doctors and even my family had given up, I experienced something that I never told you about. Even now it's hard to find the words. But there's one thing I'm certain of. As certain as I am of this life, we have nothing to fear when it's over.

Episode Number: 43
Season Number: 2
First Aired: Friday March 10, 1995
Production Code: 2X19

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