‘The X-Files’ Season 11, Episode 2: 30 things we learned in ‘This’

Mulder and Scully (David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson) fend off attackers in the episode "This." (Fox)
Mulder and Scully (David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson) fend off attackers in the episode "This." (Fox)
Published January 10
Updated January 11

The X-Files delights in keeping viewers on their toes, asking dozens of questions and only half-answering half … only to turn around a few episodes (or seasons) later and challenge those same notions. Herewith is a list of 30 things we learned in Season 11, Episode 2, "This."

·       Mulder and Scully fall asleep on the couch in Mulder's cabin.

·       The cabin still has a landline. What year is this.

·       Richard "Ringo" Langly may be kind of alive. A video message of Langly on Mulder's phone wants to know if he's dead: "If I am, then they know that I know."

·       Is Richard Langly alive? Nobody will actually answer the question. No one saw the Lone Gunmen's bodies, which were presumably incinerated.

·       Mulder and Scully are still in fighting form for combating mysterious assailants. Scully seems to be the better shot.

·       Scully's identification number is XF072161.

·       Mulder doesn't trust evidence lockup. "Scully, 10 minutes ago we received a message on this from a man who's been dead for 16 years. You want me to give it to evidence so it'll be locked up for 3-4 more years?"

·       Mulder shops at Ikea.

·       Mulder and Scully haven't talked to Skinner recently and "don't know where he stands." Skinner actually knows they're being attacked and by whom and advises surrender.

·       The bad guys turn out to be a national security contractor from Russia … via the executive branch.

·       Skinner had the director of the FBI speak with "the executive branch" to get this called off. Buuuut…  "The bureau's not in good standing with the White House these days." *side eye*

·       Byers' name is misspelled on his headstone: "John Fitgerald Byers" instead of Fitzgerald.

·       Langly's headstone is backward and has the wrong birthdate, intentionally.

·       Mulder and Langly shared a real birthday: Oct. 13.

·       They're trying to make Google vs. Scully an actual thing: "Who needs Google when you have Scully?" (Last season, it was "I'm old-school, Mulder. Pre-Google.")

·       The clues lead to Deep Throat's grave. Deep Throat died in 1994. "He's dead because the world was so dangerous and complex then. Who'd have thought we'd look back … and say that was a simpler time. Everything we feared came to pass — how did that happen?" Except, you know, that whole 2012 alien invasion, Mulder.

·       An X-File: Apparently Internet cafes still exist because Mulder and Scully found one … with excellent bran muffins so good they rise to the level of X-Files. "I don't care if it came out of an alien's butt. I'm going to eat the whole thing." – Dana Scully, everyone

·       The bread crumbs lead to an NSA building Titanpointe, on which Mulder has an X-File that predates all that Edward Snowden revealed about the NSA activities inside the building.

·       "We can't go to our home. They'll be waiting for us at our office." That's right — Scully says "our home." !!!

·       Mulder and Scully are so in danger they can't go into their office … but they can totally corner Skinner in the FBI parking garage. #security

·      The X-Files were digitized in 2002. And those Russians had access.

·       Mulder types "richard langley" as a search term — Langly's name does not have an E.

·       This Russian contractor has been around for a while since 15 years ago they scanned and copied people's brains, uploading them into a simulation. One of these was Langly's brain; he consented. But they only come to life in the simulation when they die in real life; going in, Langly had a theory about testing the fakeness of the simulation.

·       Langly got tangled up in this because he and a woman who now helps Mulder and Scully wanted a life eternal together. <3

·       Mulder thinks Scully "looks adorbs." He also thinks later that she "looks good." And mimes gagging when she flirts with another guy.

·       Scully says she's "married to the bureau."

·       The simulation is like Langly's idea of heaven, which sounds heavenly: eat hot dogs and doughnuts all day (the American dream) and "the New England Patriots are here and they never ever win – ever!" (praise hands emoji) But they're "enslaved brains" developing ideas for bad people in the real world and have no choice and no diversity, so Langly wants it shut down.

·       The woman in charge is Erica Price, who in the previous episode was working with the Syndicate and hunting for CSM. And she says "life on this earth … is about to be crushed." The simulation is their idea of evolution and continuing life.

·       They can take anyone's brain, through their phone. #creepy

·       "Why do you operate so well with your hands cuffed behind your back?" Scully asks Mulder. "As if you didn't know," Mulder responds. #Scullyknows

·       Mulder gets his phone back.

·       Mulder and Scully and forensic FBI agents find all evidence is gone.

·       They end where they began, on the couch, where another message of Langly comes back to ask them to destroy the backup.

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