24 September 2007

Season 7: Je Souhaite (7X21)

Written by: Vince Gilligan
Directed by: Vince Gilligan

Mulder and Scully are approached by Missouri businessman Jay Gillmore, who wants them to investigate a bizarre affliction that befell him, his mouth suddenly disappeared. He believes one of his former employee's Anson Stokes is some how to blame, having told him to shut up moments before it happened. Mulder and Scully travel to the Mark Twain trailer park to interview Anson, there is a brand new yacht parked next to the trailer.

Anson believing them to be IRS agents about the taxes on the yacht, hides and his wheel chair bound brother Leslie talks to Mulder and Scully instead. Mulder notices a woman in black looking board in the kitchen. Scully is astounded when Anson is later found dead and brought in for an autopsy, because he is invisible! An excited Scully calls in a research team from Harvard to validate her discovery.

Mulder meanwhile can find no record of the woman in black, until he runs her image through the national archive and finds evidence of the same woman appearing through out history, always around men who have great success and then great failure. Scully is deflated when the Harvard research team arrive and find Anson's body missing. Mulder however believes it has nothing to do with science, that Anson's body disappearing was the result of a wish being granted, he theorises that the woman in black is actually a genie. But he can not make out whether she is a good or evil genie, as everyone she comes in to contact with seems to end in tragedy.

'Je Souhaite' is French for "I Wish".

The scene where Mulder walks through an empty street, after wishing for peace on earth, was shot on a Sunday morning and cost about $50,000, for some 10 seconds of filming.

In the original script, when Anson becomes invisible, his clothes were supposed to be seen moving, without a body inside, but it proved too expensive to shoot that way.

Mulder and Scully watch Caddyshack at the end of the episode, a reference to David Duchovny's first date with Tea Leoni, where they watched Caddyshack together and "just howled".

Scully: Look, Mulder, all I'm saying is that...
Mulder: I know — this may not be a crime and this guy Stokes may not know anything about it.
Scully: But there is a condition called microstomia — 'small mouth' — which is, uh, it's brought on by the disease scleroderma and it's the overproduction of collagen and it can actually reduce a person's mouth to a tiny little opening.
Mulder: Yeah, but that takes months to develop, right? It doesn't just happen in the blink of an eye. Gilmore's surgeons are stumped. They're writing it up in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Scully: Well, there's always nasal aplasia — the complete absence of a nose.
Mulder: That's a nose, Scully; we're talking mouth here.
Scully: Yeah, but what we're talking, Mulder, is medical — physiological — not criminal. Not as far as I can see.
Mulder: Well, maybe, but I still want to know why Anson Stokes doesn't want to talk to the police.
Scully: Mulder...
(They stop walking and stare at the enormous yacht sitting on the ground next to one of the trailers)
Scully: That's a little... out of place, wouldn't you say?
Mulder: A little bit.

Anson Stokes: I got it. I got it, I got it, I got it. Okay. Okay. Are you ready? Because I am ready. I am absolutely ready. Okay, here goes. I wish that I could turn invisible... at will.
Jenn: You're kidding.
Anson Stokes: No, no. This is perfect. Yeah, I could have an advantage that nobody else on earth can have. I can, um, you know, spy and learn secret information, pick up stock tips.
Jenn: Sneak into a women's locker room.
Anson Stokes: Not just that, okay? I'm talking about James Bond type stuff. You know?
Jenn: Your wish is breathtaking in its unoriginality.
Anson Stokes: You don't have to like it, all right? You just have to do it. Right?
Jenn: Done.
Anson Stokes: My clothes are going to turn invisible, too, right?
Jenn: You didn't specify clothes.
Anson Stokes: I know, but... screw it.
Jenn: Oh, God. Turn invisible please.

Scully: What's this?
Mulder: It's not what I hoped it would be. Judging from the odour coming inside, I think it's where the Stokes brothers keep their weed. But that's not what I wanted to show you. Recognise him?
Scully: Benito Mussolini.
Mulder: How about her?
Scully: Your mystery woman. Or someone who looks a lot like her.
Mulder: Well, the computer says it is her. I ran her through Quantico's facial recognition software and couldn't come up with a match in the known felon database. Then I took a flier and checked with the image bank at the national archives. Voila.
Scully: Well, even if it is her, Mulder, what would she be doing with Mussolini?
Mulder: Or Richard Nixon, for that matter. I don't know. Except that they're both men who got all the power they ever wished for and then lost it.

Jenn: The only thing you people are cursed with is stupidity. All of you. Everybody. Mankind. Everyone I have ever come into contact with without fail. Always asking for the wrong thing.
Mulder: You mean making the wrong wishes.
Jenn: Yeah, it's always: 'Give me money. Give me big boobs. Give me a big hoo-hoo. Make me cool like the Fonz.' Or whoever's the big name now.
Mulder: You been out of circulation a long time.
Jenn: So what? In 500 years, people have not changed a bit.
Scully: 500 years.
Jenn: Granted, they smell better now generally speaking but human greed still reigns... shallowness... a propensity for self-destruction.
Scully: You're saying that you have been a firsthand witness to 500 years of human history.
Jenn: I used to be human. I was born in 15th century France and then, one day, an old Moor came to my village peddling rugs and I unrolled one that an Ifrit had taken residence in.
Scully: 'An Ifrit'.
Jenn: A very... powerful class of jinni. He offered me three wishes. For the first I asked for a stout-hearted mule. For the second, a magic sack that was always full of turnips... Did I mention this was 15th century France?
Mulder: What was your third wish?
Jenn: My third... I pondered for a great while. I didn't want to waste it. So, finally, feeling very intelligent I spoke up and I said 'Je souhaite un grand pouvoir et une longue vie'. I wish for great power and long life.
Mulder: And thus became a jinni yourself.
Jenn: Gave me the mark of the jinn... right there. It's forever. Sort of like a prison tattoo. I should've been more specific. So, am I under arrest?
Scully: I can't think of anything we have to hold you on. And, not surprisingly we don't have any evidence of any of this, so, uh... I think she's free to go.
Jenn: No, I'm not. He unrolled me.
Mulder: I get three wishes.

Highlights from ''Je Souhaite''

Episode Number: 160
Season Number: 7
First Aired: Sunday, May 14, 2000
Production Code: 7X21

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