Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The X-Files: Darkness Falls (1.20)

An effective episode that utilizes the same formula which made Ice so successful, with Mulder and Scully's own lives being threatened by a seemingly unstoppable monster accidentally unearthed by man. It may lack the paranoia of Ice, but Darkness Falls does that have that palpable tension that makes it so unnerving.

I'm a sucker for anything set in creepy woodland, while I love episodes of this show in which Mulder and Scully fall victim to some kind of bug or parasite, so this unsurprisingly worked really well for me. Sure, the special effects were bad, but the scenes with people getting cocooned, or the great moment where Scully realizes the little critters are all over her are easily successful in terms of giving you the heebie jeebies.

It also raised an interesting dynamic between conservationists and the loggers that fell trees, while it's sadly ironic that the entire forest is seemingly burned to the ground as a result of the bug outbreak, both sides losing out in the end.

The ending could be considered a cop-out, but the frantic nature of the plot and the genuine sense of fear created by the performances create a surprisingly creepy episode. Rating B

Guest stars Jason Beghe (Sheriff Larry Moore); Tom O'Rourke (Steve Humphreys); Titus Welliver (Doug Spinney)
Writer Chris Carter Director Joe Napolitano

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