CTP Episode of the Day - 10.02.06 - F. Emasculata

Today's Cherished Episode: F. Emasculata (2x22)
Original Air Date: April 28, 1995
Written By: Chris Carter and Howard Gordon
Directed By: Rob Bowman

When a plague-like illness kills 10 men inside a prison facility, Scully is called to the quarantine area while Mulder tracks two escapees.

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(Thanks to chrisnu for today's pics.)

Skinner: "You really have no idea who you're dealing with, do you?"
Mulder: "I thought I was dealing with you."

Some "F. Emasculata" Tidbits & Musings:

-- The episode title was the abbreviated name of the insect that served as the vector for the infection. Its proper name is Faciphaga emasculata.

-- "F. Emasculata" was "about a strange disease where people would get these big pustules that would then explode and they would die these horrible deaths," said co-executive producer Bob Goodwin. "And Rob Bowman directed that, and he came to me one day and he said, 'I knew I was directing the X-Files when I heard myself say -- I want the pus to go left to right.'"

-- In the scene where the escaped convict is holding the boy at gunpoint on the bus, makeup effects supervisor Toby Lindala had to operate a handheld device -- with a tube leading to the makeup applied to the actor -- in order to make the sores on the felon's cheek bubble outward. "I was jammed underneath one of the bus seats with these extras basically stepping on my head," he said.

-- The producers debated whether to delay the airdate because of its proximity to the release of the similarly themed movie Outbreak but ultimately decided that the episode stood on its own.

-- Mulder gave his badge number, JTT047101111, to obtain pay phone call records from a phone-company operator.

-- 1121 reference: The package mailed to the inmate is package number DDP112148; 11/21/1948 is the birth date of Chris Carter's wife, Dori Pierson. Bonus Reference: DDP are Mrs. Carter's initials.

-- 925 references: The house number of the escaped prisoner's wife was 925; and the time the young boy bought his bus ticket was 9:25. 9/25/1994 was the birth date of Gillian Anderson's daughter Piper.

-- Everyone else is dressed in containment suits and Scully forges ahead with only a mask and a pair of rubber gloves.

-- Angelo Vacco, who plays "Angelo Garza" the gas station attendant, was a production assistant in the offices of Ten Thirteen Productions in Los Angeles; Chris Carter wrote the part for him. In addition to several other appearances on The X-Files (see Retreads below), he also appeared in Evolution with David Duchovny.

-- Mulder and Scully use their cell phones more often in this episode than any other up to that time. During Seasons 1 and 2, they usually used a Nokia 101 or 121. The programmable alphanumeric face came in handy in "Blood," when the crew programmed Mulder's cellular display to read "All Done, Bye Bye."

-- This episode might be best known for providing us with the hilarious "Wear the ted-dee, the diaphanous ted-dee" Duchovny monologue shown in the Season 2 gag reel.

-- Charles Martin Smith (Dr. Osbourne) was discovered by a talent agent while appearing as Sancho Panza in his high school's production of Man of La Mancha. After a few years of working in film and television, he landed the role of Terry "The Toad" Fields in George Lucas's 1973 film American Graffiti. He also appeared in the 1979 sequel, More American Graffiti, which was not as successful as the original, but he gained notice for roles in The Buddy Holly Story (1978), Never Cry Wolf (1983), and Starman (1984). Smith's career continued in mostly supporting roles, including a small role in 1998's Deep Impact which starred David Duchovny's wife Tea Leoni. Between acting roles he took up directing, including several episodes of Glen Morgan and Jim Wong's series Space: Above and Beyond. He also directed "Welcome to Hellmouth," the initial episode that launched the hit TV series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

-- John Pyper-Ferguson (Paul) also played Detective Kresge in the Season 5 two-parter, "Christmas Carol/Emily." He's currently appearing in the new show Brothers and Sisters as Joe Whedon.

-- Once & Future Retreads: In addition to John Pyper-Ferguson, Angelo Vacco (Angelo Garza) appeared as the shooting victim in "Talitha Cumi," Kevin in "Milagro," and Guido/Bartender in "Improbable." Morris Panych (Dr. Simon Auerbach) went on to play the menacing Gray-Haired Man in "Piper Maru," "Avatar," "Herrenvolk," "Memento Mori," and "Zero Sum." Lynda Boyd (Elizabeth) played the woman in the bar in "Fire." Alvin Sanders (Busdriver) was Deputy Jason Wright in "Fallen Angel." Chilton Crane (Mother at Bus Station) was Margaret Hohman in "Miracle Man" and Sharon Graffia in "Tempus Fugit/Max." Jude Zachary (Winston) had an uncredited role as Jones in "Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man." Jenny-Lynn Hutcheson (Girl from Trailer) was Addie Sparks in "Paper Hearts" and Polly Turner in "Chinga."

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

Polly