Episode Report Card
Jessica: C+ | Grade It Now!
What Would Banana Slug Do?

First of all, I cannot believe that this episode squeaked past with a mere PG for L and V. If Buffy gets an M for V, this episode of The X-Files deserves, like, a big old M for XG (excessive goriness). Get your barf bags out, because this episode is one huge mess of nasty.

Welcome to a deserted stretch of land, identified by the Non-Hip, Non-Squiggy Font of Location Introduction (inspired -- although not, perhaps, specifically trademarked -- by Djb) as the Sevier Desert, in Juab County, Utah, 12:36 AM. One lone dude kneels by the side of the road, fiddles with his knapsack, and puts his headphones on. I'd call him Lone Dude except for the fact that I checked out FOX's site, and I already know his name is Hank, and Hank we shall call him henceforth. Hank trots across the street, and attempts to make a call on the musty, dusty pay phone, but does not appear to have much luck. As he examines the phone, a bus approaches. "Now you're talking," Hank says. He races across the street, grabs his bag, races back across the street and waits for the bus to pick him up, although he's neither at a bus stop, not has he stuck out his thumb in the time-honored practice of hitchers everywhere. Hope springs eternal, I suppose. And I guess a bus would stop to pick up a lone stranger in the middle of the night in the middle of nowhere, right? Oh, whatever. Who cares? Anyway, the bus zooms right past Hank's outraged mug, but, in the midst of his irate mutterings, manages to come to a stop a few feet ahead of him. As he walks to the bus, I note that there is, actually, a bench by the pay phone, indicating that it is, in fact, a bus stop. So ignore all that other stuff I said, and don't make your brain hurt by thinking too hard about the fact that there is a bus stop literally in the middle of nowhere whatsoever.

Hank gives the bus driver some lip about not seeing him to begin with. She just looks at him blankly. One of the reasons that I love The X-Files is that characters are named willy-nilly. For example, Hank has a name. But the bus driver -- she's called Bus Driver. Sexism? Nonsense? Both? You tell me. However, thank God, the IMDb exists, and from it, I know that the actress playing Bus Driver (a total Hey! It's That Guy!) is a woman with the melodious moniker of Rusty Schwimmer (not, I presume of the David Schwimmer Schwimmers). Rusty doesn't even bother to give Hank the stank-eye, which is unusual for bus drivers as a whole, I've found. Hank hauls his knapsack to the only open seat on the bus, which is, by the way, full of equally blank looking white folks, which, in The X-Files universe is short-hand for "pure evil."

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