The X-Files

Season 5 Episode 12

Bad Blood

Aired Monday 9:00 PM Feb 22, 1998 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
523 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

After Mulder chases down and kills a young man whom he believes to be a vampire, Scully realizes that his fangs are fake. The agents then return to DC, aware of the mistake they just made. Faced with a lawsuit from the family of the man, they recount each of their sides to the story leading up to the event.moreless

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  • Oh Sh--

    Were once again in a unique episode of the series. Lets first get to that opening where we see Mulder actually kill somebody, is it a fake opener, whats the deal. What's great about this episode is that not only does it NOT do one of those 12 hours earlier bits where we see the story that leads up to that moment but the episode continues afterwords in the office. Scully and Fox are indeed about to present their stories and that kid did in fact die. I love how the episode went full swing with that.

    Scully and Fox's interpretation of events were both well played with each other, they were both hilarious (magic hand baby!) and there was even one little twist some may not have thought of. It was a fun, different sort of episode and if it has any faults its that it was a little too light hearted and entertaining than actually scary, were taking about vampires here people. Sort of this season's Jose Chung.moreless
  • The Best of "The Xfiles"

    "Bad Blood" is the quintessential Xfiles episode. It was perfect, funny--the motel scenes involving the vibrating bed, the motel "art, and the snacks had be laughing until tears ran down my face--and richly satisfying. The scenes between Mulder and Scully had them down to a T, no matter which version of events was being recounted. Even with the miniscule amount of time Skinner appeared in this episode, his role throughout the series was caught here in its essence.

    One of my favorite scenes is when Dana realizes how the "vampire" immobilized his victims. Then, in her Eureka! moment, she looks up, with an expression that could have come right from a '40s or '50s comic book heroine, utters the tiniest of gasps, and says--with all of the love and concern that even the least dedicated viewers know existed between Scully and Mulder--"Mulder!" Then she goes off to rescue him.

    And the Sheriff! The only sensible female (any age over 30) reaction to his full entrance into the story according to Scully's version, is OH My GOD! That, or a spontaneous

    orgasm. In my memory if "Bad Blood," which I haven't seen for well over a year, the opening camera perspective is of the Sheriff's crotch. And then you get the the shot of his whole body, and then (OH MY GOD!) he speaks: The charisma, the charm, the wit, the looks, the phony deference to the genius of the FBI's touted ability to step over and on local cops' abilities to solve unsolved crimes, the flirtation with between him and Dana Scully and, and his instant recognition of what it's going to take to appease Mulder: Every bit of the writing, directon, and acting was spot-on. Brilliant.

    And then there's Mulder's version: Buck-toothed local-yokel hick cop (Mulder is healous!); yet even Mulder's tale allows that the Sheriff has a certain "native" AND experienced intelligence (Mulder is honest. His whole adult life has been about seeking the truth. How can he acknowledge it?).

    Since I was never attracted to the whole alien-mythology thread that ran through the series, nor enamored of or by the Smoking Man conspiracy aspect, it's the brilliance of the stand-alone shows that kept--and keep--me an ardent enthusiast:

    The cockroach episode.

    The evil talking doll episode.

    The episode where Mulder and Scully to underground to investigate mysterious doings in a neighborhood not all that unlike the Disney town, Celebration (Celebrate?) as a married couple and having forgotten to decide on a cover name beforehand, Mulder chooses the names of the main characters of the old "Dick van Dyke Show:" ": Rob and Laurie Petrie" And then one of them mispronounces Petrie! This episode captures the REAL horror of real-life homeowner associations and entertainment-conglomerate urban planners being allowed to define the "perfect" neighborhood or retirement community/assisted living facility.

    And then there's the episode when Mulder's body is taken over by someone else's mind. How deeply was the fear of identity theft a part of the American psyche when this episode aired? I don't remember. But I'm sure far less-so than now. Chris Carter and his researchers and writers were always ahead of the curve. I hope they remain so when the new episodes are made.

    I want to believe, too, the same thing Mulder (and Scully ... and even, and perhaps more than his agents, Skinner) believe--that goodness trumps , that goodness and dedication and perseverance prevail. The truth IS out there.

    [My only criticism is that the episode should have come with a caveat: Don't watch until you've watched all of the episodes of all of the seasons that preceded this

  • Bad Blood

    This is one of my favorite X-Files episodes. It is a comical, tongue-in-cheek Halloween episode. For one, it takes place in the great State of Texas and it is a vampire murder mystery! Scully and Mulder are at odds as usual but as always, work well together. One of the best!
  • Bad Blood

    Bad Blood was a perfect episode of The X-Files and I really enjoyed watching because the story was awesome, the cast was superb, and the over all production was excellent. The way the story was told first through Scully's eyes and then through Mulder's was amazing and had me laughing. I loved the humor and chemistry the actors had and the guest cast members were awesome in their roles. This is definitely a favorite of the series and may be a classic episode. I certainly look forward to watching more!!!!!!!!!moreless
  • A series classic

    Why a series classic? Because comedy done here was flawless. It was the perfect combination of comedy and a little bit of suspense of an X-files case.

    The first time I watched I didn't like it. I thought "bay day in the X-files". But I really enjoyed it after the second time and then on. Now it's one of my favorites.

    The whole he said she said it's just amazing. The way Mulder and Scully see each other in this case just to get their stories straight and save or justify themselves is very original. Also, very entertaining episode without the whole conspiracy or mithology arc. This proves two things: how versatile Gillian and David can be and that the show has amazing and creative writers which led the show to become one of the best in the history of television.moreless
Forbes Angus

Forbes Angus

Funeral Director

Guest Star

Brent Butt

Brent Butt


Guest Star

Luke Wilson

Luke Wilson

Sheriff Lucius Hartwell

Guest Star

Mitch Pileggi

Mitch Pileggi

Assistant Director Walter Skinner

Recurring Role

Arlene Pileggi

Arlene Pileggi

Skinner's Assistant (uncredited)

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (5)

    • The runaway RV doing circles in the lot is running in reverse, yet while the red tail lights appear functional, there are no white "backup lights" visible.

    • In a lot of episodes Scully hangs up on Mulder and Mulder has to say "Scully?" at least two times. In this episode when Scully is kidnapped and Mulder gets hung up on we can clearly hear dial tone. Why then does Mulder ask if Scully is still there?

    • Reportedly one of Gillian Anderson's favorite episodes.

    • During the scene where Mulder is breaking the chair in his hotel room to create a stake, a hand comes out from the left to place a stick on the ground that Mulder immediately picks up.

    • I'm not a doctor, but it seems to me like Scully should have said "small intestine" not "large intestine". They are named for their diameter, not length and there looked far too much of it to be the large intestine.

      The intestines Scully puts in the scales at the autopsy are small intestines, not large. The small intestine is, in fact, longer (several meters) than the large intestine, which is only about 1.5 meters long. The large intestine has ridges on the surface and has a larger diameter than the intestines in the scales.

  • QUOTES (28)

    • Mulder:Ok now your scaring me I want to hear exactly what your going to tell Skinner.
      Scully:Oh you want our stories straight.
      Mulder:No no I didn't say that, I just want to hear it the way you saw it.
      Scully: I don't feel comfortable with that.
      Mulder: Prison, Scully. Your cellmates nickname is going to be "Large Marge", she is going to read a lot of Gertrude Stein..
      Scully: All right.

    • (Hartwell walks into the room)
      Scully: (Quietly) Hooo, boy.

    • Scully: Skinner wants our report in one hour. What are you going to tell him?
      Mulder: What do you mean what am I going to tell him? I'm going to tell him exactly what I saw. What are you going to tell him?
      Scully: I'll tell him exactly what I saw.
      Mulder: Now, how is that different? (Scully gives him an exasperated look) Look, Scully, I'm the one who may wind up going to prison here. I got to know if you're going to back me up or what.
      Scully: (indignantly) First of all, if the family of Ronnie Strickland does indeed decide to sue the FBI for -- I think the figure is $446 million -- then you and I both will most certainly be co-defendants and second of all ... I don't even have a second of all, Mulder. $446 million. I'm in this as deep as you are and I'm not even the one that overreacted! I didn't do the ... (she makes a stabbing motion) with the thing!

    • Sheriff Hartwell: Yeah. Okay. Uh ... what she said, that's what I'm thinking, and, uh ... Yeah.

    • Scully: Anyway... I was drugged.
      Mulder: That is... essentially... exactly the way it happened.
      Scully: Essentially... (screen blacks out)
      Mulder: Except for the part about the buckteeth.

    • Scully: Mulder, please just keep reminding him you were drugged.
      Mulder: Would you stop that!
      Scully: Couldn't hurt!
      Mulder: Stop it!
      Skinner: Scully? Mulder?
      Mulder: I was drugged!

    • Mulder: The absence of birds singing.
      Hartwell: There ya go! 'Cause I - I ain't hearin' any birds singin', right? 'Course, it's winter and we ain't got no birds, but is... is there anything else?

    • Mulder: Well, historically cemeteries are thought to be a haven for vampires. As are castles, catacombs and swamps but unfortunately you don't have any of those.
      Hartwell: We used to have swamps, only the EPA made us take to callin' them wetlands...

    • Scully: (voice over) After completing the autopsy, I checked into the Davey Crockett Motor Court.
      (Title on bottom appears as normal)
      Mulder: (voice over) It was actually the Sam Houston Motor Lodge.
      (Title on bottom corrects itself)

    • Scully: Whoa whoa whoa whoa! What am I even looking for?
      Mulder: I don't know.

    • Mulder: Nice threads!

    • Mulder: C'mon, Scully, get those little legs moving! C'mon!

    • Mulder: Agents Mulder and, uh... Scully.

    • Scully: It was there that we were met by a representative of local law enforcement, Sheriff . . .
      Sheriff Hartwell: Lucious Hartwell. You the FBI agents?
      Scully: (Dreamily) Yessss.

    • Scully: But Mulder, he had fake fangs. Why would a real vampire fake fangs? I mean, for the sake of argument.
      Mulder: Fangs are very rarely mentioned in the folklore. Real vampires aren't actually thought to have them. It's more an invention of Bram Stoker's. I think maybe you were right before when you said that this is just a guy who's watched too many Dracula movies. He just happens to be a real vampire.

    • Mulder: Oh, shi-... (Theme tune)

    • Mulder: Prison, Scully. Your cell mate's nickname is going to be Large Marge. She's going to read a lot of Gertrude Stein.

    • Scully: Stomach contents show last meal close to the time of death, consisting of... pizza! Topped with pepperoni, green peppers, mushrooms... mushrooms... That sounds really good.

    • (Scully's version)
      Scully: Did he have...
      Mulder: Two small puncture marks on the neck?
      Scully: That's not what I was gonna ask.
      Mulder: Too bad. We got 'em. Check it out.
      Scully: Well, these may be syringe marks. Their placement meant to emulate fangs. Such ritualistic blood-letting points towards cultists of some sort, in which case... What?
      Mulder: Yeah, that's probably it, satanic cultists. Come on, Scully.
      Scully: You're not gonna tell me you think it's that Mexican goat sucker thing.
      Mulder: El Chupacabra? No, they got four fangs, not two, and they suck goats, hence the name.
      Scully: So instead, this would be...
      Mulder: Classic Vampirism.

    • Coroner: (Looking at Ronnie Strickland's body with a stake protruding from the chest) Probable cause of death? Gee, that's a tough one.

    • Scully: Well, there is a psychological fixation called Hematodipsia which causes the sufferer to gain erotic satisfaction from consuming human blood.
      Hartwell: Erotic. Yeah.

    • (Mulder's version)
      Mulder: I think that what we *may* be looking at is what appears to be a series of vampire or vampire-like acts.
      Scully: On what do you base that?!
      Mulder: Uh... well, on the corpses drained of blood and the fang marks on the neck. But, as always, I'm very eager to hear your opinion.
      Scully: Well, it's obviously not a vampire.
      Mulder: Well, why not?
      Scully: Because they don't exist?

    • Scully: If there's a point, Mulder, please feel free to come to it.

    • Scully: Begin autopsy on white male, age sixty, who is arguably having a worse time in Texas than I am, though not by much. I'll begin with the Y-incision. Yee-ha.

    • Scully: Mulder, are you okay?
      Mulder: (dazed) Who's the black private dick who's a sex machine with all the chicks? Shaft! Can ya dig it? They say this cat Shaft is a bad mutha - shut yo mouth! I'm talkin' bout Shaft!
      Mulder: (interrupting story) I did not!

    • (Fantasy sequence)
      Hartwell: You really know your stuff, Dana.
      (Mulder interrupts the fantasy sequence)
      Mulder: DANA?! He never even knew your first name!
      Scully: You gonna interrupt me or what?
      Mulder: No. You go ahead. (Mockingly) Dana...
      (Fantasy sequence)
      Hartwell: Agent Scully, you really know your stuff.

    • Mulder: (voice over) I went back to the motel and that's where I ran into you.
      Scully: What do you mean, you want me to do another autopsy? And why do I have to do it right now? I've just spent hours on my feet doing an autopsy, all for you! I do it all for you, Mulder! You know, I haven't eaten since 6 o'clock this morning and all that was was half a cream cheese bagel and it wasn't real cream cheese, it was light cream cheese! And now you want me to run off and do another autopsy? What the hell happened to you?!
      Mulder: (voice over) FINALLY, you left.
      Scully: Don't you touch that bed!

    • Scully: You're saying that I actually hit him... two times?
      Mulder: Square in the chest. No effect.
      Scully: And then he sort of flew at me like a flying squirrel?
      Mulder: Well, I don't think I'll use the term flying squirrel when I talk to Skinner, but yeah... that's what happened.

  • NOTES (7)

    • "The Ride of the Valkyries" composed by Richard Wagner is heard in the background shortly after Mulder's futile attempt to stop the runaway RV, which eventually rolled to a halt on its own anyway.

    • To shoot inside Ronnie Strickland's lair, crewmen cut an entire side wall out of a brand-new motor home. Afterwards they realised that they hadn't bought the thing, but only rented it.

    • This episode was inspired by an episode of the old "Dick Van Dyke Show", titled "The Night the Roof Fell In", in which Rob and Laura Petrie have a fight and then each tell their neighbor their version of what led up to it.

    • In an amusing coincidence, there is a town in Georgia called Hartwell which has a Stricklands Funeral Home in it.

    • Scully's "It's not that Mexican goat-sucker, either" refers to the 'Chupacabra' from season 4's 'El Mundo Gira'.

    • Ronnie's middle name is LaVelle. An odd name, LaVelle is also the middle name of character Xander Harris from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer".

    • Sheriff Hartwell is named for Vince Gilligan's girlfriend, Holly Hartwell Rice.


    • Sports: Iditarod
      As the camera pans across the display room of the funeral home that doubles as the morgue for the town of Chaney, a casket in the foreground sports a tag identifying its model name as Iditarod. The Iditarod is a 1,600 km dogsled race that is run from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska starting on the first Saturday in March. Among the conditions that the racers have to contend with are blizzard whiteouts and wind chills reaching -75 or more. It can be presumed that the appeal of a coffin with that name is an implied guarantee that one's afterlife won't be overheated.

    • Name of Town: Chaney, Texas
      This episode took place in Chaney, Texas which is probably so-named for Lon Chaney Jr and Sr, both of whom played vampires during their illustrious film careers (Lon Chaney Jr in The Son of Dracula and Lon Chaney Sr in the silent film London After Midnight).
      - Actually, Chaney is a real town in Texas, about half-way between Abilene and Ft. Worth. It was founded in the 1880's and named after its 1902 Post Master. (Maybe the writers picked it for this episode for the name connection)