08 May 2007

Season 4: Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man (4X07)

Writer: Glen Morgan
Director: James Wong

Agents Mulder and Scully meet with Frohike at the Lone Gunman offices, Frohike informs them about the secret past of the mysterious Cigarette Smoking Man, who has been one step ahead of them through out their time on the X-files. Frohike tells them what he has learnt, how the Cigarette Smoking Man was orphaned as a baby after the death of his communist father by electrocution and his mother from lung cancer. He joined the army where he became friends with a young Bill Mulder, until he was recruited by a shadowy conspiracy working within the government whilst an Army Captain.

How he was involved in the assassination of both John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, both icons of hope for their generation. The Cigarette Smoking Man quickly became a powerful player in the shadowy world he inhabits, always striving to remain hidden in the shadows. He worked along side Deep Throat, who would later become Mulder's first contact within the conspiracy. Together they were witness to or had a hand in many world events and were the first people in the US to carry out the murder of an extra terrestrial biological entity, the sole survivor of a UFO crash on US soil.

Working with a vengeance to conceal the truth at any cost the Cigarette Smoking Man found a purpose to his otherwise empty life. Shadowing Mulder and Scully in their work on the X-files, could it be that they too are ultimately a part of the Cigarette Smoking Man's sinister plans.

According to a documentary concerning "The Lone Gunmen" TV Series, CSM was originally written to shoot Frohike dead. However, the writers liked the characters of TLG so much they hated the idea of killing one off. So they re-wrote the episode to having CSM have Frohike in his sights, but deciding not to kill him.

On one of the covers in the newsstand where the Cigarette-Smoking Man picks up a copy of 'Roman à Clef' bears the cover line "Where the hell is Darin Morgan?". This is a reference to the departure of Darin Morgan from the writing staff of ''The X-Files''.

David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson do not appear in this episode. Only their voices are heard and Gillian is seen only in footage from the pilot episode.

Chris Owens, who plays the young CSM here and again later this season in 'Demons', will return in season 5 to play Agent Jeffrey Spender, the son of CSM.

Lee Harvey Oswald calls young Cancerman "Mr. Hunt". In reality, E. Howard Hunt wrote a number of espionage thrillers under a pseudonym at the same time that he worked for the CIA and was supposedly in Dallas when JFK was assassinated. His name has been batted around by JFK conspiracy theorists for many years.

Cancerman's aliases when meeting with Lee Harvey Oswald and James Earl Ray are based on supposedly real people. According to some conspiracy theorists, Oswald kept a correspondance with a "Mr. Hunt" before the assassination, and numerous people have named a co-conspirator in the slaying of Martin Luther King Jr. as "Raoul", which Ray calls Cancerman in this episode.

William Mulder: My one year old just said his first word.
Cigarette Smoking Man: What was the word?
William Mulder: JFK.
Cigarette Smoking Man: Catch you later, Mulder.

Lyndon: I'm working on next month's Oscar nominations. Any preference?
CSM: I couldn't care less. What I don't want to see is the Bills winning the Super Bowl. As long as I'm alive, that doesn't happen.
Jones: That'll be tough, sir. Buffalo wants it bad.
CSM: So did the Soviets in '80.

DeepThroat: The craft matches the dimensions of the vehicle spotted over Hanoi when I was in Vietnam with the company that the marines couldn't shoot down.
CSM: Occupant?
DeepThroat: Critical.
CSM: Timing couldn't be worse. The Roswell story we concocted had them all looking in the wrong direction.

CSM: Life... is like a box of chocolates. A cheap, thoughtless, perfunctory gift that nobody ever asks for. Unreturnable, because all you get back is another box of chocolates. You're stuck with this undefinable whipped-mint crap that you mindlessly wolf down when there's nothing else left to eat. Sure, once in a while, there's a peanut butter cup, or an English toffee. But they're gone too fast, the taste is fleeting. So you end up with nothing but broken bits, filled with hardened jelly and teeth-crunching nuts, and if you're desperate enough to eat those, all you've got left is a... is an empty box... filled with useless, brown paper wrappers.

Opening teaser from ''Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man''

Episode Number: 80
Season Number: 4
First Aired: Sunday November 17, 1996
Production Code: 4X07

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