Theatre of the Mind ~ Sein Und Zeit

"Sein Und Zeit" is German for "Being and Time," which is the title of Martin Heidegger's best-known work. Heidegger was a German philosopher, and "Being and Time," written in 1927, was his most important and influential work. In it, he was concerned with what he considered the essential philosophical (and human) question: What is it, to be? This led to the question of what kind of "being" human beings have. They are, he said, thrown into a world that they have not made but that consists of potentially useful things, including cultural as well as natural objects. Because these objects and artifacts come to humanity from the past and are used in the present for the sake of future goals, Heidegger posited a fundamental relation between the mode of being of objects and of humanity and the structure of time. The individual is, however, always in danger of being submerged in the world of objects, everyday routine, and the conventional, shallow behavior of the crowd. The feeling of dread (angst) brings the individual to a confrontation with death and the ultimate meaninglessness of life, but only in this confrontation can an authentic sense of Being and of freedom be attained.

1. Amber Lynn LaPierre was named for Amber Woodward, CC's assistant on "Harsh Realm."

2. Speaking of "Harsh Realm," this is one of the most definitive timelines for an episode we've ever gotten! Since Mr. LaPierre is watching "Harsh Realm" on TV, that means this takes place on October 8, 15, or 22, 1999. Well, unless he's watching on FX. Then I guess this is March 2000. Foiled again.

3. "This is great." Cute one, Chris. You know, I used to say the same thing about the X-Files.

4. My experience has been that when you shove that Hollywood Video case in your nightstand, you are likely to forget to return it.

5. Shades of Jon Benet Ramsey. Too creepy.

6. See, Bud, you get those kind of hallucinations if you watch too much "Harsh Realm."

7. The Knowing Now What I Didn't Know Then Comment: What in the heck is that stuff seeping under Amber Lynn's door supposed to be? I didn't get it then, and I still don't get it today.

9. Amber Lynn has disappeared into thin air ... much like "Harsh Realm." 9. TWC1: Woo-hoo. The man knows how to make an entrance. You can never go wrong with Mulder in jeans and leather jacket.

10. Skinner might think he has enough competent agents, but he also knows the best man for the job.

11. The LaPierres' laywer, Harry Bring, is named for the XF Unit Production Manager.

12. Mulder sure knows how to win friends and influence people. First, he disses the "competent agents" at the Hoover, and then he tells Mr. Bring to get his clients a "real lawyer." Ouch.

13. I'm so glad Mr. LaPierre can take time away from his intense worry about his daughter to give a "thumbs up" to "Harsh Realm." (Give it a rest, CC. I know sour grapes when I hear them.)

14. Kudos to Mark Snow for the wonderful music throughout this episode.

15. DD plays this scene with the LaPierres wonderfully; so quietly and calmly when you know Mulder's emotions are churning inside.

16. If it's a Lariat, it has to be at least one of the Dynamic Duo.

17. TWC2: Lying on that bed with only the TV light for illumination hoo boy!

18. No wonder the XF financial accounts were being audited by the end of the season. Skinner sent Scully cross country to find Mulder and get the report? What, he never heard of a phone or a fax machine? (Aww, maybe the big guy was just worried!)

19. There's been a long line of missing young girls that Mulder won't give up on ... Samantha Mulder, Ruby Morris, Amy Jacobs, Amber Lynn LaPierre.

20. Oh hi, Mom. Gee, I haven't seen you since you signed me out of the hospital and turned me over to that Cigarette Smoking SOB. Thanks for calling.

21. Everybody has a print of that Fox and Samantha Standing By the Tree picture, don't they?

22. I'm surprised Mulder didn't say, "Bud LaPierre says he'd been watching television ... and it was a really good show too. He was really sorry that his daughter disappeared in the middle of it."

23. Oh, oh. I feel a demonstration from the Amazing Muldeeni coming on!

24. What a lovely closeup of those hands (probably how he got his "Zoolander" gig).

25. Another of those cases he takes personally; Scully knows her job will be to pick up the pieces again.

26. TWC3: Love the soft smile when Mulder reminds Scully he didn't mention aliens.

27. Amazing Muldeeni and his eidetic memory produce a very similar letter written in 1987. Ta-da! And just to prove to you that hard work (or magic) pays off, this must have been one of the files that Mulder reconstructed, since all the X-File files were burned up in May 1998.

28. I've heard of hanging a St. Christopher figurine from your rear view, but a St. Nicholas figurine?

29. I wondered what happened to Kathy Lee after she left Regis. Now I know.

30. BTW, Tencate and LaPierre are both last names of two of Chris Carter's former girlfriends.

31. Wow, Kim Darby. It's been a long time since I saw Mattie Ross ride Little Blackie and hunt down the men who killed her father. Luckily, she's still right beside a man who does have True Grit.

32. DD does a great job again in this scene with Kathy Lee; calm, deliberate, and quiet, all the way to the whispered secrets at the end.

33. Scully is certainly making a point of telling Mulder he is "utterly irresponsible" this season. I think this is about the third time. I guess you only hurt the ones you love.

34. Kathy Lee sees dead people.

35. Have you ever noticed that Mulder's answering message is hardly ever the same message twice? He doesn't seem to me to be the kind of guy who would change his message that often.

36. You know you are ready to kill yourself: Do you (1) leave your son a phone message or write him a letter explaining all the things that you've never been able to tell him in order to ease his pain; or (2) leave an obtuse and cryptic message on his answering machine which will make him feel more guilty, fill him with despair, and drive him crazy with grief? Teena will take Door No. 2, Monty.

37. To this day I still haven't figured out the purpose of burning the photographs. Unless she just thought we were tired of seeing that same old one beside the tree ...

38. If only everyone could get past the "Spooky" exterior and see Mulder like this: helping the LaPierre's realize they were not alone in their brush with the supernatural.

39. TWC4: Don't shoot at Santa Claus. Had to mention the close-up that just happens to be the October shot on the 2001 XF calendar.

40. Thanks for that tummy shot so we'll be sure to recognize this guy later.

41. Mulder in the "time out" chair in Skinner's office.

42. The "Twinkie Defense" was first used by Dan White, a San Francisco supervisor, who argued successfully that sugary foods such as Hostess Twinkies diminished his mental capacity and put him into a heightened emotional state when he killed Mayor George Moscone and fellow Supervisor Harvey Milk. It generally means you blame outside circumstances rather than take responsibility for your actions.

43. I know there were probably time constraints at work here, but it has always bothered me that Scully just blurts out that Mulder's mom is dead. To me, that's uncharacteristic for Scully.

44. Teena must have moved into an apartment or condo since "Demons."

45. More great work by DD as he's taking in the scene in his mother's kitchen. Love the look of vulnerability and emptiness while trying to keep his cool, the hands up at his mouth ... just great.

46. And I thought Mrs. Mulder only used Diazepam to sleep in fanfic.

47. Didn't call her back ... another page in the old Guilt Scrapbook.

48. Hey, I asked about the pictures first! (See No. 37.)

49. When all else fails, grab at those conspiracy straws.

50. Let's share the kudos with GA as well. Great look as she realizes what Mulder is asking her to do. And as much as I think I would have liked seeing what Scully might have said as Teena was laid out before her, I'm glad they didn't show us.

51. Exactly when did Mulder make arrangements for his mom's funeral/burial? Perhaps the ever-faithful Scully took care of that as well. (Especially since we know Mulder prefers the economy plan since he opted for that one-size-fits-all tombstone for the whole Mulder clan.)

52. Aaaah, a footwear closeup. I needed that.

53. Remember, contrary to popular belief, the walk-in theory isn't new. It was first brought up way back in "Red Museum" in Season 2. (And in a strange coincidence, actor Mark Rolston [Bud LaPierre] also appeared in "Red Museum.")

54. This seedy "Santa's North Pole Village" in the middle of California is just a little bit creepy. Kids that age visiting Santa's North Pole Village? Also creepy. Parents who would bring their kids to such a place? Creepiest of all.

55. This is the first time I've noticed there's a llama in the background at Santa's North Pole Village. I didn't know there were llamas at the North Pole.

56. TWC5: Even in his grief, the gray tee shirt and jeans just warrants a Holy Flaming Cow!!

57. Second Most Heartbreaking Scene Ever: IMBO, the most heartbreaking scene in the history of the XF can be found in "Biogenesis"; this is the second. Torturing himself by listening to the tape over and over, wracked with guilt, desperate to find any answer. And then when he puts his cheek down on the answering machine ... my heart just breaks. DD is just wonderful here, doing a great job of conveying his disappointment in himself and his desperation to connect to his mother one more time.

58. You just can't explain a boy's love for his mother. After everything, he's still trying to rationalize that she tried to protect him and help him through Samantha's disappearance.

59. Scully gives Mulder the bad news, but she isn't specific. There are at least three diseases bearing Paget's name: Paget's disease of the breast, Extramammary Paget's disease, and Paget's disease of the bone. The first two diseases are carcinomas while the latter is associated with a greatly increased risk of bone cancers. All three are potentially disfiguring. Sir James Paget was one of the founding fathers of modern pathology (1814-1899). His careful observations made over a hundred years ago laid the groundwork for understanding the diseases of the breast and bone that today bear his name.

60. First anger, then the breakdown. Great work by these two, but couldn't they have pulled the camera back a bit? There is such a thing as a too-close close-up.

61. This *could* obviously be the MSRM lots of crying and touching and holding and rocking and neck kissing, etc., etc. But let's pick something a little less obvious.

62. Amber Lynn in a ghostly vision ... not a good sign.

63. Next morning. Do I think they slept together that night? Yes, but not in the widely understood meaning of that term.

64. MamaBear!Scully protects her cub by guarding the door. You don't stand a chance, Walter.

65. TWC6: He may have had a hard night, but oh my!

66. MSRM: "Well, then you better book three." I think that says it all.

67. Mulder has certainly racked up the frequent flyer miles in this one. He went from D.C. to California (in record time, I might add), back to D.C., then to Idaho, back to D.C., to Connecticut, back to Idaho, then back to D.C., then back to California.

68. GPM: And despite all that flying around, the GPM in this one is that there isn't a GPM. Because M&S spend much of the episode together. That's always nice.

69. "The delusional talk of people that don't want to accept the truth." A clue that Mulder might now be ready to accept the truth about a lot of things.

70. Mulder asking for time off ... he's really shook.

71. Another subtle MSRM with Scully's backwards glance to check on Mulder in the back seat.

72. Mulder's too preoccupied to make the big leap, so Scully has to make it for him. That's teamwork.

73. I'm not sure whether it's scarier to see Scully making the leap or the fact that Santa's North Pole Village is a tourist attraction worthy of inclusion on this handy-dandy map conveniently left in the rental car glove compartment.

74. Could the average person *have* a videotape recorder in the 1960s?

75. In this, the Season or Lurve, it's the little things that count. When they are standing back-to-back, I love the way she reaches up and, without looking, taps him.

76. Look out! He's getting away! Never fear! Skinner is in hot .... er, um, medium ... um, er, lukewarm pursuit. Honestly, I've seen faster turtle races.

77. Walt, you need to hit the gym, hon. Well, I guess there's not much incentive for keeping yourself in shape when those old nanocytes could start pulsing through your veins at any time.

78. Mulder had to break down a door (:::sigh:::) and he and Scully still catch up just as Walter is about to drop from exhaustion .... um, I mean fire his gun. Skinner is so pooped Scully's gotta cuff the guy.

79. I'm beginning to wonder if Ed Truelove is Santa Claus or Dick Clark. Doesn't he look a little young to have had this *hobby* since the 1960s?

90. Great camera work at the end as we see the horror register on Mulder's face, then a quick zoom to Scully, and then a crane shot allowing the horror to be revealed to all of us.

91. With one slight nitpick: If this is such a popular tourist attraction, how has Ed been able to bury children in what is practically his backyard since the 1960s and no one has made this discovery? Come on.

92. The obvious comparison for "SUZ" is "Paper Hearts," another episode (my favorite!) that explores the premise that Samantha Mulder might have met a different fate than the one we (and Mulder) have been led to believe. There are many things to like about "SUZ," but one thing I'll always be disappointed about is that we never got the mother/son confrontation that Mulder (and we) deserved. He's still left to guess how much she knew and what she was trying to tell him. Did she know Samantha's fate all along? Will Mulder find Samantha's body in one of those graves? All he wants now is closure; and in one more episode, he might get it. To be continued ...

Well, once again I apologize for taking so long. Every time I think I'm going to start rolling, something else happens. And I also apologize for the length. I try to make 'em shorter, I really do. And believe it or not, this one *could* have been longer. But there is "so much that I've left unsaid, for reasons I hope one day you'll understand." See, I can be just as obtuse as Teena.

And I could apologize for the content. But I'm not responsible for that. Do the words "Twinkie Defense" mean anything to you?