What Links The X-Files Episodes Written & Directed By David Duchovny?

What Links The X-Files Episodes Written & Directed By David Duchovny?
Image credit: FOX

They actually tell a whole story when viewed side by side.

Aside from an acting journey, everyone's favorite Fox Mulder actor, David Duchovny, has pursued many other career paths. He has released three music albums and published six books. He has served as a producer on several projects. And, of course, he wrote and directed two movies starring himself as well as a few episodes of the shows in which he appeared.

Naturally, Duchovny's restless creative mind conceived several arcs in The X-Files. He is credited with writing eight episodes alongside Chris Carter and other regular creators, and directed three of those stories.

Let's take a closer look at them and try to see what they have in common and what Duchovny was trying to say as a showmaker.

S6E19 The Unnatural

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IMDb rating: 8.4/10

Duchovny's directorial debut on The X-Files is a monster-of-the-week story, independent of the show's mytharc. Nevertheless, it delves deeply into Mulder's obsession with aliens. The whole episode is basically a memory told by the brother of Arthur Dales, who was the first to investigate the X-Files.

The brother (also oddly named Arthur Dales) tells Mulder about a case in 1947 when a talented baseball player turned out to be an alien who stayed on Earth for the sake of the sport. In the end, he is killed by another of his kind and bleeds real human blood. And Mulder and Scully share a cozy time playing baseball together.

S7E19 Hollywood A.D.

What Links The X-Files Episodes Written & Directed By David Duchovny? - image 2

IMDb rating: 7.3/10

The second directorial effort is another monster-of-the-week episode with a hilarious, memorable plot. Skinner has his friend, a Hollywood director, shadow Mulder and Scully on a case involving an attempt on the life of a church cardinal and the resurrection of dead people.

In the end, the film is made, starring Garry Shandling and Téa Leoni, who was Duchovny's wife at the time. The agents are shocked by the way their case and themselves are misrepresented on the screen and go out to dinner together at the FBI's expense.

S9E16 William

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IMDb rating: 7.6/10

William marks the return of David Duchovny after a long hiatus from the show. It is a heartbreaking episode that explains why Scully has to give up her and Mulder's son William for adoption. The main mystery of the episode is who is the horribly disfigured man who appears in the team's office.

Everyone but Scully thinks it might be Mulder, who is supposed to be hiding somewhere, but it turns out to be his half-brother, Jeffrey Spender. Jeffrey is determined to hide William, who he believes is half alien, from his father, the Cigarette Smoking Man, and the aliens. Scully realizes that she and William won't be left alone while they're together and says goodbye to the baby with tears (both hers and the viewers').

What connects these episodes?

While the three episodes directed by David Duchovny may not seem to have much in common (two of them are stand-alone stories and the third is part of mytharc), if you look at them in chronological order, they tell a story of Mulder and Scully as a couple.

In The Unnatural, they are in the flirtation stage. Hollywood A.D. strongly implies that they are in a romantic relationship. In William, we see one of the worst things that can happen to parents: Scully and Mulder losing their baby. Fortunately, the story didn't end there, and we got the sequel seasons that gave our beloved agents a new chance at happiness with a new baby.