Folie a Deux | The K Files | The X Files Podcast | Case File 328
We’re celebrating the end of VR Month with an episode that considers an augmented reality for some unlucky office workers in fourth season monster of the week, Folie a Deux. A madness shared by two. It could describe the whole of The X Files really – the story of how tall enigma Fox Mulder convinced Valkyrie healer Dana Scully to go on a wild spree investigating the invisible world. In this outing, Mulder believes his work is undervalued and Scully reminds him that it’s not all about him, so let’s get to work, already. And in the end, Mulder answers his question: Scully.
Open the case file below for the full investigation:
Folie a Deux is filed under B for Bug Monster (see also War of the Copraphages and Darkness Falls), Scully Saves the Day (my favorite among these files is her crack shooting in Anasazi), Mulder in the Hospital (Kill Switch, Brand X), and W for Workplace Monster (Hungry, Elegy). Lots of cross-referencing in this Vince Gilligan/Kim Manners venture.
In Oak Brook, Illinois, Gary Lambert (Brian Markinson), a telemarketer at a company called VinylRight, believes that his seemingly normal boss, Greg Pincus (John Apicella), is an insect-like monster that only he can see.
Walter Skinner (Mitch Pileggi) orders Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) to go to Chicago to do a threat assessment of a taped manifesto that mentions VinylRight, which has seen a violent incident at its Kansas City offices. Mulder suspects that the case is a deliberate waste of time and tells Scully not to accompany him. During his meeting with Pincus, Mulder learns that the tape was sent to a local radio station with a demand that it be played twenty-four hours a day; on the tape, a man – later revealed to be Lambert – claims that a monster “hides in the light” and stalks employees at VinylRight. Mulder calls Scully and asks her to find past X-Files containing the phrase.
After one of Lambert’s co-workers, Nancy Aaronson (Cynthia Preston), is turned into a living corpse by Pincus – while appearing normal to everyone else – Lambert flees to his apartment and arms himself with a Type 84S rifle. Meanwhile, Scully calls Mulder to tell him that she found the phrase “hiding in the light” in a 1992 case from Lakeland, Florida that involved similar accusations of hidden monsters. Mulder admits that Scully should come to Chicago to help him with the investigation. He returns to the VinylRight office and unwittingly walks into the middle of a hostage situation, being held captive by Lambert along with Pincus and the other employees.
As Scully arrives on the scene, Lambert divides his hostages into “real people” and “monsters”, claiming that Pincus has turned several employees into zombies. Lambert shoots Mark Backus, one of the purported zombies, when he tries to disarm him whilst briefly distracted by Mulder. When Lambert demands a camera to broadcast his warning, Scully arranges for a SWAT officer disguised as a cameraman to be sent in the building. Lambert, not knowing that the camera broadcasts only in a closed-circuit, tells viewers about Pincus being a monster. As the lights are cut, Lambert forces Mulder to look behind him and see that Pincus, for an instant, is a large insect. Just then, the FBI smashes into the room with an armored vehicle and kills Lambert before he can open fire.
Mulder questions Pincus and learns that he was present during the VinylRight incidents in Kansas City and Florida. At his office, Mulder maps out all the reports of monsters “hiding in the light” against places Pincus has lived and worked. He tries to convince Scully that Lambert might have been right, but she accuses him of succumbing to a “Folie à Deux“, or shared psychosis, with Lambert. Mulder asks Scully to do an autopsy of Mark Backus to see if there is any evidence of Lambert’s claims, but Scully refuses.
In an effort to prove Lambert right Mulder goes to Lambert’s home with Agent Rice. There, Mulder finds a map of Pincus’ movements and incidents of reported monsters, like the map Mulder made. Looking out a window Mulder sees a corpse-like Nancy Aaronson, a co-worker Lambert called a zombie, watching him. He runs outside to confront her but she drives away in a car with Pincus. Meanwhile, Skinner asks Scully why Mulder has returned to Chicago. Scully covers for him and finds herself committed to performing the autopsy on Mark Backus. She is still reluctant and orders her assistant to only perform an external examination. He observes that the body has been dead for between 48 and 72 hours instead of the 24 hours since the shooting.
Back in Oak Brook, Mulder has followed Pincus to the house of VinylRight employee Gretchen Starns. Mulder looks through the window and sees the monster leaning over the woman as she watches TV. Mulder breaks the window and then kicks in the door. Inside the house he sees that Starns has been transformed into a zombie. Behind him, out of his sight, the monster walks across the ceiling. Mulder catches a glimpse of it crawling up the outside of the house. Later at the FBI office, Starns and Pincus complain to A.D. Skinner about Mulder’s behavior. Mulder, seeing Pincus begin to transform into the creature again, draws his weapon. He is restrained by a disbelieving Skinner and then sedated in a hospital.
Mulder tells Scully that he saw the monster doing something to the back of his victim’s head and begs her to look for evidence on the back of Backus’s head. Scully examines Backus’s corpse and finds three puncture marks at the top of the spine marking the corners of an equilateral triangle.
Mulder, still restrained in his bed at the hospital, sees the silhouette of the monster at the window. He screams for the nurse, but she has already been bitten and opens the window to let the monster in. Scully tries to visit Mulder but the nurse refuses access. Suddenly Scully sees the nurse as a corpse, realizes that Mulder is in danger, and runs into Mulder’s room. There she sees the monster on the wall and shoots at it. It leaps through the partially open window, breaking the glass and wooden frame.
Back at FBI headquarters, Scully testifies to Skinner that she believes Mulder is mentally sound and fit for duty, noting that Pincus and several others mysteriously disappeared, that there was an intruder in Mulder’s room, and that Backus did have some sort of chemical in his system. Afterward she tells Mulder that she said it was Folie à deux, and describes it as ‘a madness shared by two’. – Wiki
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