Theatre of the Mind ~ Darkness Falls

In "Darkness Falls," XF uses the "Ice" formula again but takes a nice trip to the forest this time. Here's the plot in a nutshell: (1) Take agents to remote location. (2) Pit them against the elements. (3) Pit them against each other and/or guest stars. (4) Kill off some guests stars but never M or S. (5) Put one or the other or both in peril. (6) Throw in some Mulder!Torture, Scully!Torture, M&S!Torture, Scully!Mulder!Comfort. (7) Reunite agents to work together to save selves, each other, or designated guest stars, or at least to stay alive until help can arrive. (8) Destroy evidence before Mulder can return to get a better look. (See also, Firewalker, Dod Kalm, Quagmire, Home (sort of), Detour, Agua Mala.)

1. It's a meeting of the Olympia National Forest Manly Men Association (ONFMMA for short).

2. We have a motion on the floor that it's not safe for us to be here after dark. All in favor of running for your lives say "aye"? Opposed? Motion carries. Let's get our ONFMMA a**es out of here!

3. You always know when somebody falls and breaks their ankle (no spraining here-that would be a girly injury) that they're gonna be the first to get it. Nothing new here (except maybe for girly scream).

4. Mulder starts slide show featuring photos from ONFMMA yearbook. Caption: "Rugged, manly men in the full bloom of their manhood."

5. Scully knows a manly man when she sees one, Mulder.

6. Oh, to be back in the day when Scully still laughed at his little jokes. "Anything strange, unexplainable, unlikely, a boyfriend?"

7. Mulder shares photo of WPAMMA members who also vanished without a trace. Nothing vanishes without a trace. I heard that somewhere.

8. Oh, to be back in the day when Mulder still laughed at her little jokes. "And you suspect Bigfoot?"

9. "That's a lot of flannel to be choking down, even for Bigfoot." She laughs again.

10. "C'mon, Scully, it'll be a nice trip to the forest." Mulder should have said, "You can leave your mittens at home, Scully, but don't forget the bug repellent."

11. XF Trivia: Jason Beghe (Ranger Larry "Freddie" Moore) is one of DD's best friends since childhood.

12. Scully forgot her mittens but did remember her fuzzy boots.

13. Time for some TWC: This episode is 90% Casual Mulder & Scully. And Mulder is looking might fine, as is Ponytail Scully.

14. Steve Humphries is downright annoying. Somehow, I know he'll be the first to go.

15. Back in the day: Mulder's smile at Scully's comment about walking into a war.

16. What exactly are M&S doing in the back of the truck? Why do they have to sit soooo close?

17. BAM! When that tire blows on DVD, it really blows!

18. Scully looks positively thrilled about the prospects of hiking to the camp. She's so pooped when she gets there that she walks right into Mulder's backpack.

19. Now we know what kept those manly men in the full bloom of their manhood: Got milk?

20. Mulder got party favors. Did anybody see what he did with that bag? I think he's saving it for when he wants to get Scully that stoned!

21. TWC2: Call me kinky, but I looooove those Mulder Timberland boots. How YOU doin'?

22. Scully learns the value of being the littlest agent.

23. I "think" I can cut it down? Isn't this the same woman who slices and dices with expert precision?

24. Obviously Mulder has rubbed off on his hiking mates. EVERYBODY sticks their fingers into the cocoon and no latex in sight!

25. What exactly was Scully groping when she proclaimed that the body in the cocoon was male?

26. "Itsy bitsy spider." Heh-heh.

27. I hope Spinney got that milk out of the fridge cause what was on the table outta be extra chunky about now!

28. Spinney relates that this whole episode is basically about everyone's childhood fear - of the dark - and that they are gonna need one big nightlight.

29. "I think I'm gonna suggest that we sleep with the lights on." Good call, Mulder.

30. Scully has brief "Shapes" like period where she seems to have left her brain somewhere else. "You must get a lot of lumber from a big tree like this." "Those center rings are the older ones, right?"

31. TWC3: Mulder squattng on the tree stump. Hoo boy. And good view of Mulder!Boots.

32. Note to Steve: Always make sure you have the car keys before you hike down to get the truck.

33. Mulder does the white glove test on the stove. AGAIN with the fingers!!!

34. 200 million bugs per person on this planet? That's a fact I could have lived without.

35. Intuitive!Mulder is on a roll now with facts about volcanos and radiation and amoebas.

36. "A brain sucking amoeba." :::snort:::

37. What was that thing that flew across the sunrise shot? That looked like an X-File in itself.

38. Mulder, the man who trusts no one, proves again that he trusts everyone and lets Spinney leave with the gasoline.

39. Mr. Wizard Mulder fixes the radio. I guess he would've been the Professor on Gilligan's Island.

40. 'Scuse me, Ranger Smartypants: You haven't missed Spinney all day and you're yelling at Mulder?

41. Sidebar: I just noticed that Scully is wearing that big oversize shirt. Wonder why? Hmmmm.

42. Ranger Smartypants reads Mulder the riot act while Scully just gives him that "your father and I are so disappointed in you, son" look.

43. Mulder gets sent to his room and Scully comes to administer punishment (okay, collectively, get those minds out of the gutter).

44. Scully reminds Mulder that they're in a pickle and wants to know what he would suggest they do. "I don't know. We'll think of something." That's encouraging.

45. He might have done okay on Gilligan's Island, but I think if Mulder was on Survivor, he would have been voted off after this episode.

46. Finally the punishment as Scully lectures Mulder on the dangers of selfishly making life-and-death decisions that affect the entire group.

47. "Oh, will you cut the sanctimonious crap!" Mulder replies. Guess he hasn't heard that this is the infamous Saint Scully!

48. Mulder says let's not waste time arguing and uses shippy shoulder grab to convey that this argument is over.

49. Mulder, Scully, and Ranger Larry play "This Old House."

50. Ranger shows knack for excellent timing as he tells Scully that's the last light bulb as she's in mid-screw. (Okay, watch it.)

51. TWC4: Mulder reclining on the bed. OMG!

52. Sidebar: Shouldn't Mulder be the one freaking out about the bugs instead of Scully? Well, I guess he's not really afraid of them. He just hates them.

53. You knew the light bulb was going to be in jeopardy, didn't you?

54. M&S get to sit close together on the bed and discuss what happens when the lights go out.

55. Mulder confirms once again that they'll think of something and gets a snort in return.

56. Okay, then. How about a NECK CHECK? It worked before.

57. Just my 2 cents: Did anyone think about lighting a fire? I guess Scully was going to run to the store for some matches, but left her wallet in the car. And Mulder is afraid of fire, so I guess that lets him out. And I guess Ranger Larry was so intrigued by the UST between these two that he thought there was ALREADY a fire in the room! Whew, thank God the sun rises just in time!

58. Spinney does return, Mulder is vindicated, but doesn't take time to say I told you so.

59. Now tell the truth: You WERE surprised when the trio was overcome by the swarm and cocooned. A show where the heroes don't solve the mystery just in the nick of time? What kind of show is this anyway?

60. Everyone is saved, but, alas, poor Spinney. We knew him well.

61. Good thing we had all those wonderful Mulder moments throughout the episode, because the little white hat just ain't makin' it.

62. The technician makes a funny and sums up Scully's future with Mulder and the X-Files: "She's still not out of the woods."