09 May 2007

Season 4: Tunguska (4X09)

Writers: Frank Spotnitz and Chris Carter
Director: Rob Bowman

Mulder receives an anonymous tip about a right wing militia group planning an Oklahoma style bombing. The informant turns out to be Alex Krycek, rescued from the missile silo by the Militia group. Krycek manages to persuade Mulder that he wants revenge on the Cigarette Smoking Man and can help bring down the shadowy Syndicate he is part of. Despite his personal loathing of Krycek and his belief that Krycek killed his father, Mulder reluctantly accepts his co-operation.

Krycek directs Mulder and Scully to intercept a Russian courier's parcel, which turns out to contain a 4 billion year old extraterrestrial rock. Scully takes the rock off to be tested on but when a government exobiologist drills in to the rock he is attacked by the black oil. The Well Manicured Man is shocked to hear that Mulder has the rock and orders the Cigarette Smoking Man to recover it. Mulder takes Krycek to Assistant Director Skinner's apartment for 'safe' keeping while he seeks out his UN contact Marita Covarrubias who informs him that the Russian courier's destination was Tunguska, which Mulder recognises as the scene of a massive explosion when a fireball crashed there in 1908.

The Russian courier breaks in to Skinner's apartment and is killed by Krycek, forcing Mulder to take Krycek, who speaks Russian with him to Tunguska. As Scully and Skinner face a congressional investigation over the death of the courier, Mulder and Krycek are captured and imprisoned in a Russian Gulag.

In the closed captioning for this episode, viewers saw Mulder pull a cockroach out of a drinking cup and say: "Bambi?". This is a reference Dr. Bambi Berenbaum, an entomologist studying cockroaches who appeared in the season 3 episode 'War of the Coprophages'.

Krycek tells Mulder that "When you go underground you gotta learn to live with the rats", a possible reference to Nick Lea's nickname, 'Ratboy'.

Tunguska is the location in Siberia where an object (asteroid? UFO?) struck the earth on June 30, 1908. The blast levelled over a half million acres and was hundreds of times stronger than the blast of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima.

Scully: I, Dana Katherine Scully, swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God. I would like to read from a prepared statement.
Senator Sorenson: You may do so.
Scully: I left behind a career in medicine to become an FBI agent four years ago because I believed in this country. Because I wanted to uphold its laws, to punish the guilty and to protect the innocent. I still believe in this country. But I believe that there are powerfulmen in the government who do not. . . men who have no respect for the law and who flout it with impunity.
Chairman Romine: Ms. Scully. . .
Scully: I have come to the conclusion that it is no longerpossible. . .
Chairman Romine: Agent Scully... this is not a soapbox, Miss Scully. Your statement will be entered into the record.
Scully: With all due respect, Mr. Chairman, I would like to finish.
Chairman Romine: This is not why we are here today.
Scully: Then why are we here, sir?
Senator Sorenson: Agent Scully, do you or do you not know the whereabouts of Agent Mulder? Are you or are you not aware of Agent Mulder's present location?
Scully: I respectfully decline to answer that question, sir.
Chairman Romine: Ms. Scully, you cannot refuse to answer thatquestion.
Scully: Because I believe answering that question could endangerAgent Mulder's life.
Chairman Romine: You don't seem to understand. Your response is not optional; you are an agent of the FBI.
Scully: Then if I could please finish my statement. . . that it is no longer possible to carry out my duties as an FBI agent.
Senator Sorenson: Are you tendering your resignation, Ms. Scully? Is that what you're trying to say?
Scully: No, sir. What I am saying is that there is a culture oflawlessness that has prevented me from doing my job. That the realtarget of this committee's investigation should be the men who arebeyond prosecution and punishment. The men whose policies are behind the crimes that you are investigating.
Senator Sorenson: Either you tell us what you know about Agent Mulder's whereabouts, or you will be held in Contempt of Congress.
(Scully and Sorenson stare at each other.)
Senator Sorenson: Agent Scully?

Mulder: The only thing that will destroy this man is the truth.
Krycek : The truth, the truth!. There's no truth. These men, they make it up as they go along. They're the engineers of the future. They're the real revolutionaries.

Mulder: I don't speak Russian.
Prisoner: Then no one told you.
Mulder: Told me what?
Prisoner: That you were brought here to die. To wish you were dead.
Mulder: I wasn't brought here, I came here looking for something.
Prisoner: The only thing you will find here is death.
Mulder: What is this Place?
Prisoner: This Place.. A Gulag, a place where the guilty rule the innocent.

Episode Number: 81
Season Number: 4
First Aired: Sunday November 24, 1996
Production Code: 4X09

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