CTP Episode of the Day - 08.14.06

Today's Cherished Episode: Deep Throat (1x01)
Original Air Date: September 17, 1993
Written By: Chris Carter
Directed By: Daniel Sackheim

Acting on a tip from an inside source, Mulder and Scully travel to Idaho to investigate unusual disappearances of army test pilots.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Now you use the box ...
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

And now you don't
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

"Unidentified Flying Objects. I think that fits the description pretty well. Tell me I'm crazy."
"Mulder, you're crazy. And it still doesn't explain to me what happened to Colonel Budahas."

Some "Deep Throat" Tidbits & Musings:

-- The episode title is of course the code name of Mulder's informant -- although the words "Deep Throat" are never mentioned in this episode. (In fact, the name Deep Throat isn't mentioned until Scully calls him "this Deep Throat character" in "The Erlenmeyer Flask.") The character was named for the infamous Watergate informant, who provided information to Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein which helped them unravel a conspiracy and eventually bring down a Presidency.

-- Ironically, the real "Deep Throat" had FBI connections. In May 2005, in an interview in Vanity Fair magazine, W. Mark Felt, former assistant director of the FBI during the Nixon Administration, revealed that he was Deep Throat. The identity of Deep Throat was one of the best kept secrets in Washington -- and the subject of great speculation -- for more than 30 years. The image of Deep Throat as a romantic truth teller half hidden in the shadows was rendered indelibly by the dramatic best-selling memoir Woodward and Bernstein published in 1974 -- All the President's Men. Two years later, in a blockbuster movie of the same name, actor Hal Holbrook breathed whispery urgency into the suspenseful late-night encounters between Woodward and his source. Deep Throat's identity was known only to Woodward, Bernstein, and Ben Bradlee, the Post's executive editor during the Watergate coverage. They maintained they would not disclose Deep Throat's identity until after his death, and remained true to their word. Felt was coaxed into publicly revealing his role in history by his daughter, partially due to his failing health and his dimming memory.

-- Daniel Sackheim directed five episodes of The X-Files and served as producer or consulting producer on countless more. He also directed episodes of Millennium and Harsh Realm, as well as episodes of Frank Spotnitz's short-lived series, The Night Stalker.

-- As its title indicates, this episode marks the introduction of Mulder's arguably most interesting informant, Deep Throat, who suddenly appeared to warn Mulder off the case. He repeated similar warnings in future episodes, while at the same time feeding Mulder information to help him with his investigations. Deep Throat was played by veteran actor Jerry Hardin. The highly prolific actor, whose dozens of films include Reds, Cujo, The Falcon and the Snowman, and Ghosts of Mississippi, played a military role that could have been that of a younger Deep Throat in the real-life government-conspiracy drama Missing. He also twice played Mark Twain on Star Trek: The Next Generation.

-- It was Hardin's role in The Firm, in which he played a corrupt lawyer, that caught Chris Carter's attention and caused him to seek out Hardin to play Mulder's shadowy informant. When Hardin signed on for the part in the show's second episode, he was told it would possibly be a recurring role, but took that promise with a grain of salt. "They did say that it perhaps would recur," he said with a laugh. "But my experience in this industry is that it's never wise to depend on that. You take the job and run."

-- Jerry Hardin was born in Dallas in 1929 and was raised in a small town outside that city. His father was a rancher and he grew up riding horses and going to rodeos, doing, as he put it, "all those things young cowboys do." He was involved in church and school plays as a youth and participated regularly in speech and drama competitions throughout high school, eventually winning a scholarship to Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. That was followed by a prestigious Fulbright scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. After two years in Europe, he returned to the U.S. and began working in New York, then spent almost 12 years in regional theater. His wife Diane, also an actress, frequently did shows with him, and went on to become a drama teacher and a manager for young actors. Hardin did his best to discourage his own children from acting, without much success. His daughter, Melora Hardin, is an actress who can currently be seen as Jan Levinson on the NBC sitcom The Office. She also played Trudy, Monk's dead wife, on the series Monk. Hardin's son Shawn is a film producer and worked for NBC.

-- Hardin felt the X-Files success was due to the fact that it was "language-driven and thought-driven. It pleases me that it's successful under those circumstances."

-- Hardin appeared as "Deep Throat" in seven season one episodes: "Deep Throat," "Ghost in the Machine," "Fallen Angel," "Eve," "Young at Heart," "E.B.E.," and "The Erlenmeyer Flask," where he met his unexpected demise. "Deep Throat" would return from the dead to appear in dream sequences or flashbacks in four more episodes -- "The Blessing Way," "Talitha Cumi," "Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man," and "The Sixth Extinction II: Amor Fati."

-- The house which appears at the beginning of the episode is the same house used in Millennium as Frank and Catherine Black's "yellow house."

-- We rarely saw Scully wear jewelry other than her cross necklace, but in this early episode, she sported a large pin on her lapel in the first scene (see above). (FWIW, I don't blame her for putting that one back in her jewelry box and never taking it out again.)

-- "I'm fine" is a phrase that we most associate with Scully; but it was actually Mulder who uttered it first. In "Deep Throat," after being surprised by the man who would become his informant in the bar bathroom, a perplexed Mulder tells Scully, "I'm fine."

-- The article on Ellens Air Base that Scully reads from microfiche was written by someone named 'Chris Carter.'

-- Mulder cooks! Well, we *knew* that, but I believe this is the only time in nine years that we see Mulder cooking something on his stove. (Maybe some Campbell's soup? Mmm, mmm, good!)

-- "So what did you make of Uncle Fester down the block?" Uncle Fester was a character on The Addams Family" played by Jackie Coogan. He was notable for his bald head and sunken eyes (though I don't think he made fishing lures out of his hair).

-- When Mulder and Scully see the lights at the airbase, have their car's rear window blown out, and then meet up with the two teenagers, it's 9:13 p.m. (according to the legend). When next we see Mulder and Scully and the teenagers eating at the restaurant, the time stamp says it is 5:02 a.m. What were they doing all that time? I suppose getting their rear window replaced at an all-night Idaho body shop, since when Mulder gets the boy's moped out of his trunk, the windshield is miraculously fixed.

-- Though their names are not used on-screen, the teenagers' names in the script are Emil and Ladonna.

-- "Deep Throat" featured a guest appearance by Seth Green (Emil), who had already been a professional actor for 10 years before his XF guest role. He would go on to play werewolf Daniel "Oz" Osbourne on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Dr. Evil's son Scott in the Austin Powers movies. He most recently appeared in the short-lived NBC series Four Kings and continues to provide the voice of Chris Griffin in the Fox animated series, Family Guy.

-- Colonel Budahas tells Mulder and Scully that his birthday is 11/21/48; 11/21/48 is the birth date of Chris Carter's wife, Dori Pierson.

-- When Mulder and Scully are being driven off the road by the National Security agents, you can clearly see that the persons in the car are stunt doubles who don't even closely resemble Duchovny and Anderson.

-- Oopsie! When Scully's gun is taken from her and the clip is extracted, it looks empty.

-- 1013 references -- The file number for this case is #DF101364; and the license plate number investigated by Scully is CC-1356. The Big CC (Chris Carter) was born on October 13, 1956.

-- The first Mulder Ditch! And our fascination with Mulder!Torture is born.

-- The van marked "Abramowitz Plumbing" is actually sound mixer Michael Williamson's sound van.

-- It's apparent in this episode that Scully still isn't too happy about her new assignment, and she's still not quite sure what to make of her new partner; there's lots of arguing back and forth, lots of great banter (the "Sucker" exchange is memorable), and Scully spends much of her time trying to be a good partner while remaining loyal to her employer. But in the end, she puts herself on the line to bring her partner home. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

-- The original script didn't include the voice-over narration by Scully toward the end of the episode; it was added by Chris Carter as a compromise to Fox Broadcasting, which wanted more closure out of the episode. Although Carter continued to fight against pat resolutions, the narration became an ongoing device.

-- Having done most of his scenes with David Duchovny, Hardin said he was impressed by the star's "embracing of new bodies" -- making newcomers or periodic visitors to the show feel comfortable and welcome. That was particularly helpful, Hardin noted, given that his own routine usually involved flying in, performing the next day, and leaving the day after that.

-- This episode was the first one on which assistant art director Clyde Klotz worked. He went on to marry Gillian Anderson on New Year's Day 1994 on the 17th hole of a golf course in Hawaii in a Buddhist ceremony. They had a daughter together -- Piper Maru, born on September 25, 1994. Anderson and Klotz were divorced in 1997.

-- Once & Future Retreads: Gabrielle Rose (Mrs. Budahas) played Dr. Zenzola in "The Host." Sheila Moore (Verla McLennen) was Mrs. Dawson in "Excelsius Dei." Andrew Johnston (Col. Budahas) was Agent Barry Weiss in "Colony/End Game" and the Medical Examiner in "Demons." Jon Cuthbert (Commanding Officer) was Jerry Tiernan in "Excelsius Dei." Michael Puttonen (Motel Manager) was Dr. Pilsson in "Sleepless," the Conductor in "731," and Martin Alpert in "Elegy."

Awww, aren't they cute in this picture?
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

(Thanks to chrisnu for today's episode pics.)

Please share your first impressions, favorite (or cringe-worthy) moments, classic lines, favorite fanfic, nagging questions, repeated viewing observations, etc., as today we celebrate "Deep Throat"!

Polly