Theatre of the Mind ~ The Calusari

Apologies in advance; this is meant to bring back memories of and poke a little fun at an episode of a TV show. The death of a child should never to be taken lightly.

1. A nice family outing in the park on a beautiful day. Couldn't be an X-File here, could there?

2. Danger! Danger, Will Robinson! Charlie kind of reminds me of Billy Mummy.

3. Having those younger siblings really bites. Poor Charlie loses his balloon and his ice cream.

4. Okay, I don't have any children, but I think even *I* would know better than to chain mine to the sink in the bathroom. Even if I could see him under the stall door.

5. As soon as you saw Teddy's harness on the floor, you knew the outcome wasn't going to be good, didn't you?

6. The balloon seems to be leading Teddy to his demise on purpose, but that's not possible, is it?

7. That wayward balloon bobbing down behind Charlie's head! I think the devil just touched my spine! If you don't get that reference, visit

8. University of Maryland! Woo-hoo! Go Terps!

9. TWC: I'm sure some will think it's insensitive to consider totally worthless commentary in an episode that deals with horrific things happening to children. But it *is* a TV show, after all, and I'm sure no real children were harmed in the making of it. (I'm really not sure about the chickens, though.)

10. That said, TWC1: Mulder looking at the photo of Teddy and the balloon! Woo hoo!

11. Mulder might have learned in kindergarten what happens when you let go of a balloon, but I think he flunked playing well with others, cleaning up your own mess, not sticking your fingers in things, and watching for traffic, holding hands, and sticking together.

12. "Did you learn about wind in kindergarten?" Where did Scully go to kindergarten. Meteorology Elementary?

13. The first appearance of Chuck Burks! (Unless you count that Jersey Devil thing, but he barely got to the O in the B-I-N-G-O song before he was a goner in that one.)

14. Buckle up, Scully. I believe Chuck is about to take us on a ride into the paranormal.

15. Surprisingly, :::snort:::, Scully has trouble believing that a ghost killed Teddy Holvey.

16. Chuck, I hope we'll see more of you in the future. I can see why Mulder digs you. (Why, oh *why* did they cut that line in "Hollywood AD"?)

17. TWC2: Mulder, I can see why Scully digs *you*.

18. Holvey house? That looks like Grandmama Addams to me.

19. Oh yeah. Nothing strange happening around *this* house. Problems with the wiring? I'll say. They're heeeeere.

20. "You marry a devil, you have devil child." Scully, you have Mulder child, you marry Mulder.

21. TWC3: Mulder at his desk in front of his poster. And it is HIS desk, Deputy Doggett.

22. Educational portion of tonight's TOTM: The swastika is also known as a gammadion or a fylfot; an ancient symbol formed by a Greek cross with the ends bent at right angles in either a clockwise or counterclockwise direction used for protection or good luck. And you thought it was just the symbol of the Nazi party.

23. TWC4: Since I need a happy moment to stop me from thinking about the atrocities of the Nazi party, Mulder with the pen in his mouth! Hoo-boy!

24. Mulder is always so sweet to pretend he doesn't know what the heck Scully is talking about when she mentions these psychological disorders, just so she can explain them to the audience. He *is* a psychologist, after all (though he briefly forgot that in "Terms of Endearment).

25. Mulder's poor grandfather was a mess, apparently. We've learned he slurped his soup and used to take Munchausen by Proxy for his stomach. Do you think Mulder even had a grandfather?

26. Thankfully, Steve Holvey is more familiar with Munchausen by Proxy than Mulder was so Scully doesn't have to explain it again.

27. TWC5: Scully looks pretty good here too. Good hair. That makes me think of the Season 8 premiere trailer! But then, almost everything does! :::vbg:::

28. Poor Steve! I've never trusted those garage door openers and now I know why!

29. Scully wonders if Grandmama is worshipping at the shrine of Colonel Sanders.

30. Getting a tip from this episode, I now explain the layer of stuff on the top of my refrigerator as "holy ash" too.

31. TWC6: Mulder in the garage. Be careful not to get that tie tangled in anything!

32. What a creepy feeling when the garage door opens and Grandmama and Charlie are standing there!

33. Hey, Scully, this is a nice piece of ash, don't you think? The bag, Scully, the bag.

34. "Nothing just materializes out of thin air." Yeah, and nothing vanishes without a trace, too.

35. TWC7: Mulder's big laugh at Scully's Last Supper joke. He is *so* smitten!

36. Chuck, I can see this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

37. Looks like Grandmama is having her bridge club over this afternoon.

38. It's Scully's friend Karen Kosseff! Do you think Scully still goes to see her and talks to her about Mulder? Gee, wouldn't that be cool if in Season 8 Scully went to talk to Karen about being pregnant and alone and revealed to Karen that M is daddy and . . . oops, back to this episode.

39. Slightly OT: The XF in season 2 has just been a hotbed of foreign language! So far, we've heard German (Die Hand Die Verletzt), Romanian (this episode), French (Fresh Bones), Latin (Die Hand Die Whatever again), Norweigian (Dod Kalm), Russian (The Host), American Sign (Fearful Symmetry), Transylvanian (3), Spanish (Little Green Men), and of course we will get Navajo before the season ends (Anasazi). Having paid close attention, I have mastered some of these languages just from my exposure to the X-Files. For example, I can say "don't push the red button" in Spanish: Nojo on the rojo. (Okay, I stole that from the blooper reel.)

40. But this does pose a bigger question: When these episodes are run in foreign countries where the language is spoken, do the actors say the lines in English and the subtitle appears in the foreign language? I obviously have waaaay too much time on my hands.

41. Grandmama is dead; this is murder most fowl.

42. The Mulder/Charlie stare leads me to believe that Mulder is just a wee bit afraid of this kid. Good to be cautious, Mulder, lest you suffer death by chicken as well.

43. I guess Mulder is also an herbalist in his spare time, as he identifies that mugwort first thing! He's becoming almost as diverse as Scully!

44. How to describe the Calusari? Well, they kinda got this Amish meets meets Fiddler on the Roof thing goin' on.

45. TWC8: Mulder reflected in the Calusari's car. I'm a sucker for Mulder reflections!

46. Okay, we're nearly three-quarters of the way through this ep and *now* we find out about Michael. A little late to play the evil twin card, don't you think?

47. So is Charlie supposed to be a ghost? The evil twin come to life? I don't know. At least it comforts me when Mulder says he doesn't know either a few minutes later.

48. They could have so easily set up this episode for us in the very beginning of the show! Everybody sing! Here's Charlie who lives near Washington, a lovely boy, a loving son, But Michael's only seen the sights a kid can see from Hades heights; wants to have some fun! But they're brothers, identical brothers all the way. One pair of matching bookends, different as night and day. Where Charlie adores his mom and dad, he's only good, he's never bad; Our Michael likes to rock 'n' roll, some mugwort makes him lose control! What a crazy lad! But they're brothers, identical brothers and you'll find, They act alike, they walk alike, at times they even talk alike, you could lose your mind! When brothers, are two of a kind! (Except that one is dead.)

49. Apologies to all those too young to remember the Patty Duke Show. You won't get it.

50. I think Mrs. Holvey knew before she left the hospital that this wasn't Charlie. She was finally ready to believe . . . and ready to try and save her son.

51. TWC9: Mulder at the hospital window! *I* might need a doctor.

52. Dr. Scully calls for a nurse. That's a good one.

53. TWC10: Tonight's holy flaming cow moment: Mulder by the elevator.

54. Just the way Charlie/Michael now says "Mummy" makes *me* want to get out the mugwort.

55. Electricity off, Scully. You two should have figured out by now that this only leads to mayhem.

56. The alternating scenes of the exorcism at the hospital and Michael's Revenge in Grandmama's bedroom are very well done and very scary. Great camera work, great music, great lighting, great effects. I really feel the fear that both M&S are feeling. Though, I wonder how Scully is going to explain this one away scentifically? (And you know she will.)

57. But sorry, Mrs. Holvey on the ceiling always reminds me of Mary Poppins. I'll try to stifle my chuckle.

58. Also, how'd you like to be the patient in the room next door to Charlie's? (LOL) I don't know why I think of stupid stuff like that. I just do.

59. I always thought there would be some follow-up to this episode since the head Calusari says to Mulder, "You must be careful. It knows you." But now I think that given all the evil that has been done to Mulder and all the evil he has witnessed, the remark was meant in a more general way.

60. TWC11: But I can't think about that now; I'll think about that tomorrow. Right now, I can only think of Mulder staring into Charlie's room. Another big woo-hoo.

61. And in the very last line, I feel like Mulder is talking about Scully and himself: "I am disturbed by the warnings of the Calusari that neither innocence nor vigilance may be protection against the howling heart of evil." Scully is innocent, Mulder is vigilant, but sadly for them, they will meet that howling heart time and time again. Maybe in Season 8 they will finally find some peace and happiness? I want to believe.

More apologies, and sorry for the late hour again. I'll get caught up soon!