Theatre of the Mind ~ Memento Mori

Sometimes life is tough, you know? Just imagine being forced to sit down and watch an episode like Memento Mori for the sake of writing a TOTM. Well, it's a dirty job, but somebody's got to do it. They can't all be like Teso Dos Bichos!!

1. Memento Mori - Latin for "a reminder of death."

2. Though the four Musketeers are credited with writing this episode, Scully's soliloquy at the beginning sounds like pure Carter to me. His finest, IMHO.

3. "For the first time, I feel time like a heartbeat." Or perhaps the length of "one breath."

4. ". . . knowing that you will read them and share my burden, as I have come to trust no other." Anyone got a hankie?

5. "As I cross to face you and look at you incomplete . . ." Aww. When she's not beside him, he's not a whole person. It only takes him till the movie to acknowledge that.

6. ". . . hoping that you will forgive me for not making the rest of the journey with you." Only Scully could apologize for interrupting their journey by dying.

7. Love the little "ta-da" when presenting her with flowers. [He loves her so much.] But he's still gotta make a joke just in case she makes it more than it is.

8. The sweet little smile at his gesture . . . she knows what it is. He's the only one she called, after all.

9. Once again, Duchovny says it all in his face and his voice inflection. All you have to do is look at his eyes to know she has told him something devastating. And then the stutter as he refuses to believe and accept. I'm sure he's thinking, "This is not happening."

10. Scully is in full doctor mode, laying it calmly and matter-of-factly on the line. She's dying. She puts on her ScienceFace, Mulder puts on his PanicFace.

11. But hey, she's fine, she feels fine. I think Scully sets a new "I'm fine" world's record in this episode.

12. TWC1: I apologize for being so shallow as to focus on Mulder's looks when Scully is dying and all (but, hey, I know she's going to be okay in the end so that makes it all right), so woo-hoo! Hands on hips, shuffling his feet in Skinner's office.

13. Poor Skinner. He loves her too. Sniff.

14. So that's how you get those decals off windows! The X-Files is better than Hints from Heloise!

15. Scully gets a "Nisei" flashback and lets a thousand emotions play over her face when she learns of Betsy's death; Mulder just gives the sideways glance to gauge her reaction.

16. Scully gives herself a neck check. You had it removed, hon, 'member?

17. TWC2: Outside the apartment building, oh my!

18. She's fine again, Mulder. Quit staring. Reality sets in for him: she's *not* fine.

19. You can see how much it hurts when he has to tell her they are all dead.

20. TWC3: When Mulder pulls Scully aside to talk to her about the investigation, he is *so* sweet with her. And he looks fantastic!!

21. Does Scully have cancer as a result of her abduction? Mulder says yes, Scully says no.

22. Her anger finally surfaces and as she takes it out on him, he just shakes his head no. My heart breaks.

23. Scully finds a glimmer of false hope in Penny's words about Dr. Scanlon: "if he'd caught it earlier, he might have been able to do more for her, and for me." No, Scully! Don't trust him! Remember, there's only one person you trust!!

24. Does it seem like there's a "Mulder, it's me" in almost every episode now?

25. All the women were childless and had been treated for infertility. Hmmm . . .

26. Mulder's totally concentrating on the case, so much so that he doesn't even get it when Scully tells him she needs him to come there.

27. *Now* he gets it. Just look at his face.

28. MSRM: This episode is chock full of MSRMs. The hallway hug at the end is a no-brainer. Let's go for something a little more subtle. Again, their relationship is defined not by what is said, but by what is *not* said. The way his voice breaks when he says, "I will be right there," and her slight grimace to keep from crying at his anguish. Two people could not be closer.

29. Say, I just noticed that Kurt Crawford is wearing a sort-of Mulder outfit. Cute!

30. Oh-oh, the intruder is packing one of those pfffft icepicks! So do only clones dissolve or do only aliens dissolve, or is it both? I'm so confused! Either way, Kurt is a goner!

31. Dr. Scanlon appears to Scully in a bright light. Does Scully think he is her angel of mercy? I don't like him already.

32. It's Ma Scully! You know, if I was Mrs. Scully, I'd get caller ID, and if it said "Fox Mulder," I wouldn't pick up the phone. He is *always* the bearer of bad news!!

33. However, I do think it's kind of funny that Scully was too chicken to call her mother herself. She knew what her reaction would be!

34. And she was right! Mrs. Scully is pissed that she was kept in the dark!

35. Don't worry, Mrs. Scully, she's fine. I think she said so about 12 times in this conversation.

36. :::sigh:::! Don't you love it when she writes to Mulder? Why wasn't she keeping a journal during the search for him this season? What wonderful prose she [i.e., CC] would have wrought under those circumstances.

37. Of course, as she's writing that he must never feel there was something he could have done, Mulder is dealing with her cancer and his own heartache in the only way he knows how: by trying to do something about it.

38. Say, isn't that Kurt Crawford again? I thought he melted!

39. Mulder proves that he is more adept than Scully at guessing passwords. It took her three tries.

40. There's an egg in that snowglobe, which keeps nicely with the ova theme of this episode. FYI, Vegreville in Alberta, Canada, is famous for its giant Easter egg landmark. It is a 31.6 foot tall Ukranian Easter egg made out of metal.

41. Anyone ever see that "Scully's nightmare" outtake? I wish they had left that in.

42. "Human compassion is not something that they have." I believe Mulder knows that first-hand now.

43. TWC4: Mulder in Skinner's office, just sittin' and waitin'. My oh my.

44. So Scully was abducted by our government and not by aliens? It seems that one is just about as evil as the other.

45. Aww, Skinner won't let Mulder sell his soul to the CSM devil for Scully's cure. He loves Mulder too!

46. So Skinner won't let you make a deal, but you need info. Who you gonna call? The LGM of course!

47. Mulder thinks a cure can be found in the Lombard Research Facility, prompting a classic Mulderism: "Well, pick out something black and sexy and prepare to do some funky poaching."

48. What does CSM think the X-Files office is, a library?

49. Unfortunately, Skinner doesn't know enough to heed his own advice and offers up whatever it will take in exchange for a miracle. Mulder & Scully have pulled their guns on their boss so many times, too bad they don't know how much he really cares about them and that he would sell his soul for their safekeeping.

50. TWC5: Well, at least *one* of these four knows how to pick out something black and sexy. Yowza!

51. "We gots to go." I love it.

52. Guess this might be the theme of the LGM's new show; espionage on a budget!

53. I knew that Scanlon guy was up to no good! Luckily, Mulder figures out the same.

54. :::sigh::: again! She's writing *only* to Mulder. Say, maybe even as we speak she's keeping a journal for baby in light of Mulder's death and he'll find it and read it and that's how he will finally be inspired to tell her his true feelings. So romantic!! Come on CC & Spotsy: write it!!

55. Meanwhile, back at the research facility . . . goodness gracious, it's Kurt Crawford, and Kurt Crawford, and Kurt Crawford, and Kurt Crawford . . .

56. Mulder realizes it's the little "Herrenvolk" bee husbandry boys all grown up!

57. Gosh, a wee bit of continuity! The date of 10/29/94 on the drawer containing Scully's ova coincides with the latter part of Scully's abduction. Will wonders never cease!

58. TWC6: Did I mention lately how good Mulder looks in his funky poaching outfit? The leather jacket just makes the ensemble!

59. Do you think Mulder will ever mention to Scully that he found her ova? Nah. Ain't gonna happen.

60. I don't know why Mulder didn't grab all the vials; maybe he knew he couldn't keep them viable for very long and thought he might have a spot of trouble getting out of there. I always imagine he came back and got the rest later and put them somewhere for safekeeping. Perhaps those are the ones he had tested eventually and told her about in Per Manum? I'd like to think so.

61. I am confused about one thing (only one?). If the eggs of all these women are used to create the hybrids, why do they all look alike? Haven't figured that one out yet.

62. I'm sure Mulder might be able to learn something about his sister's abduction in this room too, but he doesn't give it a thought. It says a great deal about his love and concern for Scully.

63. Langley! Frohike! Get him out of there! He's going to get his funky poacher shot off! Whew! That was close!

64. TWC7: Hoo-boy, he's a man on a mission when he runs around the hospital looking for Scully! And then he finds her with Penny, such a look of relief and love!!

65. TWC8: Holy Flaming Cow! Even though he's been up all night--when he stands up as Scully exits Penny's room, well, you know.

66. Okay, the 'ship is sailing! All aboard!! One of the finest moments ever between these two when they kinda sorta almost nearly discuss how they feel about each other. I guess sometimes facing death forces you to look at what you feel in your heart and say it out loud. They come close here.

67. I love the contrasts in this scene: he's so tall, she's so short. He's all in black, she's all in white. So different, yet as mentioned previously and since, they complete each other.

68. :::sigh:::! He got scared that something had happened . . . awww!

69. Throughout the show, Scully has been a sidekick to Mulder's quest, but Scully has her own quest now, to find out what was done to her and maybe save herself in the process.

70. She fits so nicely right under his chin, don't you think?

71. "The truth will save you, Scully. I think it'll save both of us." What'd I do with that hankie?

72. What is it with these two and hallways and forehead kisses? Don't they ever want to aim a little lower in a more private location?

73. I've always felt that he didn't tell her about the ova at the time because he didn't want to heap bad news upon bad news. In Per Manum, I found out I was right!! Of course, he could have told her after she was recovered . . . oh, I don't want to think about that now!! I want to revel in the 'ship a little longer!

74. Mulder, you should have been more suspicious. *You're* the only person who comes to work at 5:30 a.m.

75. I just loooove how the smoke appears in front of Skinner as he says "There's always another way." Skinner is willing to pay the price, and CSM appears ready to collect. We just don't know how heavy a price that will be just yet.

76. Anyone who doubts that Mulder and Scully are more than partners need only watch Memento Mori. There are just not enough adjectives to describe this relationship; no, it isn't about physical love because these two have so much more than that. In the hallway scene alone we see Scully at her most vulnerable, embarrassed not only because of what she wrote (basically giving up), but also because he read it. In the hallway she reclaims her fighting spirit, determined to get back to work, to finish things and prove things to herself and those she holds most dear. Mulder is renewed also, as he welcomes back his "old Scully" with arms wide open. Even though the threat of death hangs heavily over this episode, it is really in the end about the rebirth of these two characters. And even though we all wanted to see a kiss on the lips, in reality, I don't think this would have been the appropriate place for that to happen. This scene is already pretty darn intimate; it cements the emotional bond between them, making it hard to believe that it was only four short years ago when he was "under the impression that you were sent to spy on me." In this moment, we learned, as they did, that this partnership could withstand anything-perhaps even death. We'll need to keep this in mind again in Season 8.

77. I guess like everyone, I could write a book about Memento Mori. But for now, I gots to go.

With apologies as always,