The X-Files

Season 2 Episode 25

Anasazi (1)

Aired Monday 9:00 PM May 19, 1995 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
386 votes

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Episode Summary

Mulder obtains what could be the original and uncut MJ documents containing information about the government's knowledge of extraterrestrial life, which could lead him closer to the truth than ever before. But Mulder's enemies make sure he learns that there's a heavy price to pay for his much sought after truth.moreless

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  • Ancient aliens

    This was a fantastic season finale when a hacker discovers evidence against the syndicate that they want to keep a secret and when Mulder gets his hands on it he finds he has to decrypt it.Things get really bad for Mulder when he is drugged which makes him react violently like when Mulder punches Skinner.When Mulder's father is about to reveal what the syndicate is hiding he is killed by presumably Krycek and with Mulder's violence Mulder attempts to kill him but Scully has to shoot him to prove he didn't kill his father.When Scully takes Mulder to Mexico a man decrypts part of it with word like vaccination,merchandise and Scully and Duane Barry.Also in Mexico Mulder is taken to dead aliens which appear to be ancient but the cancer man comes with soldiers and burns it down with Mulder in it leaving it on a cliffhanger.It was well worth waiting for this season finale.moreless
  • Anasazi

    Anasazi was a perfect episode and season two finale of The X-Files. I really enjoyed watching because this episode had it all! There was an awesome Native American and Extraterrestrial connection and a stunning surprise find! It was awesome seeing The Cigarette Smoking Man taking action, though it was sad to see the various things Mulder had to go through to see the Truth for himself. I loved how every thing played out. I am so thankful for the juicy details and visuals in this episode. I look forward to seeing how the story continues next season!!!!!!!!!moreless
  • "Anasazi", was a cliffhanger with thrills for everyone. UFO buffs got the Majestic 12 documents, Skinner fans got a dust-up between he and Mulder, Ratboy gets beat up pretty good, even the romantics got a scene they've been waiting for--Mulder falling into Scully's arms.moreless


    In Anasazi, Mulder is falling apart both physically and emotionally, alienating nearly everyone around him. He even tries to distance himself from his partner, but Scully will not permit him to destroy himself, even if she has to shoot him for his own good. It's a novel way to show one's loyalty, to be sure, but it works. She brings him to the edge of the cliff, so to speak, risking her career to save his life and his quest. She cannot go all the way with him, however, and Mulder has to go on alone to discover the secret his father died trying to tell him. In a boxcar buried in the desert, a pile of mummies holds answers--and more questions. The horrors implied in the smallpox vaccination scar on the 'alien' body made it all worth waiting for, and even linked up with the first season's finale, "The Erlenmeyer Flask".

    The most interesting conversation in "Anasazi" was probably between Mulder's father and the Smoking Man. I saw echoes of Walter Skinner and Fox Mulder in Cancerman and Bill Mulder. Is this what Mulder has to look forward to, twenty or thirty years down the line? Will we someday see Fox Mulder racked by doubt and guilt? Will we see Skinner as cold, as remote, as arrogant, as the slippery smoking man?

    I give high praise to writers Duchovny and Carter for this episode, both in terms of the canon and in terms of simple storytelling. The characterizations were at an all- time high, with Scully at her coolest, most professional, most competent, but still allowing us to see the warmth and compassion she hides so much of the time. Duchovny got a chance to show his talents again in the scene where Mulder's father dies in his arms. Mulder's call to Scully--dark, desperate, and anguished--is Fox Mulder at rock bottom. Almost as subtle was the look of triumph on his face as Mulder spun the mysterious DOD tape and saw the first of the secret documents- -followed by angry disappointment as he finds himself hoaxed yet again. This episode explored the boundaries of Mulder and Scully's relationship, those prickly outer regions where her ambition and her innate conservatism collide with his dedication to "the quest" and his free-wheeling tactics.

    Best of all, "Anasazi" once again widens our view of "The X-Files". As in "Colony/Endgame", we get tantalizing glimpses of a larger conspiracy, linking all the alien X-Files cases into one massive, convoluted deception. Are there really aliens abducting humans at random? Or are "alien abductions" a diabolically clever lie to hide the real horrors of genetic experimentation? Or are the tests part of a devil's bargain between the government and alien intelligences? We end the second season even more paranoid than when we began, a neat trick.

    The art direction on this episode was as good as ever, with superb lighting and the usual outstanding camerawork. I appreciate the directing details: the mirror business in Bill Mulder's bathroom, revealing his assassin standing in the shower behind him, Mulder with his father's blood literally on his hands, the slimy shadows that hide Alex Krycek. The tainted-water clues hit me out of left field--they were very subtly threaded through the episode until Scully unraveled them with her usual perspicacity.

  • Mulder gets a mysterious file about alien abduction and learns interesting facts about his father's involvement in everything

    If last year's finale shocking, I don't even know what the word is to describe this episode. Once again, we randomly get thrown back into the world of conspiracies and possible extraterrestrial life and Mulder and Scully are smack-dab in the middle of it. However, the stakes are higher than they've ever been, and the episode and season ends on a cliffhanger just as intense as any other show's cliffhanger.

    The main idea is that a tape full of secret documents on extraterrestrial research from the last fifty years has found its way into Mulder's hands, but its encoded in a ancient Native American language that nobody can read but a Navajo Indian. However, the government clearly does not want Mulder reading the information on it. Throughout the episode, we have the return of the Cigarette Smoking Man, who reveals that Mulder's father is involved in the cover-up of aliens on Earth and of multiple experiments.

    Throughout the episode, Mulder is drugged, witnesses his father die and sees, for just about the first time, alien bodies (even if they are all dead). Scully also realizes her name is in the file in reference to what they did to her after she was abducted. As her and the Navajo Indian attempt to decode it all, Mulder must deal with the government attempting to kill him. The season ends on a huge cliffhanger, with the train car Mulder is in blowing up while he's supposedly still in it. It's obvious he survives, but the episode ends so abruptly and in such an exciting spot that it's hard to believe Mulder could've actually survived.

    It's clear Chris Carter and gang had a lot of story to tell here. It feels as if there's still a lot more to explore in terms of extraterrestrial stuff, and next season should be superb if they continue focusing on these kinds of things.moreless
  • What a way to end season 2

    It was just the right amount of deception, treason and excitement. This has got to be one of the best episodes in the history of the X-Files.

    Poor Mulder. He went through hell and back and almost dragged Scully with him. Once again, when he was close to some tangible proof, what he has been looking for all these years, the men behind the conspiracy have to come and mess the whole thing up.

    I was very surprised that Scully dared shoot Mulder, but well, she did it because she wanted him to be clear, to be safe and it was very nice to see her taking care of him. Too bad Mr. Mulder didn't have enough time to ask his son for forgiveness and give a good explanation of what happened all those years ago.

    Things start to go wrong for Cancer Man and I think it was here where Skinner began looking out for Mulder and Scully as he knew they wanted the truth and CSM just wanted to hide it.moreless
Chris Carter

Chris Carter

3rd Senior Agent (uncredited)

Guest Star

Bernie Coulson

Bernie Coulson

Kenneth Soona (The Thinker)

Guest Star

Aurelio Dinunzio

Aurelio Dinunzio

Antonio (uncredited)

Guest Star

Michael David Simms

Michael David Simms

Senior FBI Agent

Recurring Role

Ken Camroux

Ken Camroux

2nd Senior Agent

Recurring Role

Peter Donat

Peter Donat

William Mulder

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (5)

    • Albert Hosteen's statements about the "Anasazi" are inaccurate. The name "Anasazi" is Navajo for "ancient enemies" -- it could loosely be interpreted as "aliens", in the sense of "not-like-us", but not in the X-Files sense. As to his assertion that "No evidence of their fate exists", the Hopis, who are Pueblo Indians, have a different name for the Anasazi. They call them "ancestral Puebloans".

    • As Scully stands up to leave at the Offices of the Navajo Nation, the reflection of a boom mike moving in one of the picture frames on the wall can be seen.

    • After Mulder wakes up in New Mexico, Scully says that they have just driven for two days and he has been unconscious for 36 hours, but he looked pretty clean shaven for a guy who had been out for that long. I doubt Scully or anyone else would have had the opportunity or inclination to do it.

    • After Mulder has his tantrum and goes to see Skinner he does not have or reach for his suit coat, but when he walks up to Skinner he has it on.

    • In Mulder's apartment building when the woman shoots her husband it takes exactly 10 seconds for the police to show up. Talk about service.

  • QUOTES (13)

    • Scully: They called me in today.
      Mulder: What did you tell them?
      Scully: That nothing was wrong.
      Mulder: Well, you told them the truth then.
      Scully: Mulder, you opened the door for them, they're just looking for a good reason now.
      Mulder: Okay, I'll say I'm sorry.
      Scully: Mulder, these files. Who knows you have them?
      Mulder: Why?
      Scully: Because I had to lie today. And I put my job in jeopardy in order to do so. If they find out about those files -
      Mulder: How would they find out?
      Scully: Maybe they already know. The question is, is it worth it? Is this cassette worth risking everything?
      Mulder: I'll tell you when I find out what's on it. Now just tell me who I can talk to about breaking that code!
      Scully: I'm meeting with someone in an hour. I might know something later tonight... I just need some kind of assurance that they're not going to let us hang ourselves with this! That I'm doing the right thing.
      Mulder: I'll try to find out. (He tapes an 'X' to the window)
      Scully: I need to know one more thing Mulder. Why did you attack Skinner?
      Mulder: I've thought about that Scully. I honestly can't say.

    • Cigarette Smoking Man: (about Mulder not being in the boxcar) Nothing vanishes without a trace. Burn it.

    • Mulder: I'm in a boxcar buried inside a quarry. There are bodies everywhere.
      Scully: Bodies?
      Mulder: Stacked floor to ceiling.
      Scully: What happened to them?
      Mulder: I don't know.
      Scully: Mulder, in these files I found references to experiments that were conducted here in the US by Axis Power scientists who were given amnesty after the war.
      Mulder: What kind of experiments?
      Scully: Some kind of tests, on humans. What they referred to as merchandise.
      Mulder: But these aren't human, Scully. From the look of it I'd say they were alien.

    • Bill Mulder: You're going to learn of things, Fox. You're going to hear the words and they'll come to make sense to you.

    • Scully: Where did you get this?
      Mulder: Your friendly neighborhood anarchist.

    • The Thinker: I don't want you to know my real name. I just don't think it's that important that you know.
      Mulder: Sounds like a line I used in a bar once.

    • Mulder: Who would follow you.?
      Byers: Multinational black ops unit. Code name Garnett.
      Langly: Trained killers. School of the American Alumni.
      Mulder: Have you boys been defacing library books again.?

    • Cigarette Smoking Man: (hangs up) Gentlemen, that was the phone call I never wanted to get.

    • (Mulder's cell phone rings, and he answers it.)
      Cigarette Smoking Man: You're a hard man to reach.
      Mulder: Obviously, not hard enough apparently.
      Cigarette Smoking Man: Where are you?
      Mulder: I'm at the Betty Ford center, where are you?

    • Skinner: Agent Mulder. I need to speak with you.
      Mulder: About?
      Skinner: In my office.
      Mulder: Why? Is this another jerk off assignment where I end up doing the government's dirty work?
      Skinner: It's about a rumor that you may be in reciept of some sensitive files.
      Mulder: I don't know anything about that.
      Skinner: Agent Mulder.. list... (Mulder walks away faster, irrating Skinner even more causing him to grab Mulder's shoulder) I'm talking to you...
      (Mulder spins around and pops Skinner around his eye, causing his glasses to fall off. Some co-workers run to break up the fight. But one grabs Mulder and throws him into the arms of Skinner, who applies the choke hold on Mulder)
      Skinner: Are we finished Agent Mulder? Are we done? (he lets Mulder go. The two stare at each other a moment) We're done!

    • Albert: There was a tribe of indians who lived here more than 600 years ago. Their name was Anasazi, it means ancient aliens. No evidence of their fate exists. Historians say they disappeared without a trace. They say that because they will not sacrifice themselves to the truth.
      Mulder: And what is the truth?
      Albert: Nothing disappears without a trace.

    • Scully: Mulder, I'm being called into Skinner's office this afternoon, they're gonna want answers and I'd like some good ones to give them.
      Mulder: So you can clear your conscience and your name?! You've been making reports on me since the beginning, Scully, taking your little notes!
      Scully: Mulder, you're sick, you're not thinking straight, I'm on your side. You know that.
      Mulder: Look, you have my files and you have my gun. Don't ask me for my trust.

    • Mulder: Are you familiar with the ten commandments, Scully?
      Scully: You want me to recite them?
      Mulder: No. Just number four, the one about obeying the sabbath, the part about where God made Heaven and Earth but didn't bother to tell anybody about his side projects.
      Scully: What are you talking about?
      Mulder: The biggest lie of all.

  • NOTES (8)


    • Visual: Majestic 12

      The Majestic 12 files supposedly document the existence of a secret organization dedicated to the concealment of extraterrestrial contacts, that purport to have been compiled for Harry Truman soon after the 1947 Roswell crash.