The X-Files

Season 6 Episode 2

Drive

1
Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Nov 15, 1998 on FOX
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (11)

8.5
out of 10
Average
274 votes
  • Drive

    9.0
    Drive was a superb and entertaining episode of The X-Files. I really enjoyed watching because the story was pretty good, the character and plot development was intriguing and the action and suspense were engaging. I liked watching Mulder in a high speed chase under the gun of a guy who needs his help. Scully had some great scenes as well. I liked the ending as Scully is sternly reminded that she and agent Mulder are no longer to work on X-Files. I certainly look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!!!
  • Mulder is forced to drive at maximum speeds to keep a man named Crump (that is, MR. Crump) alive.

    8.7
    I'm not sure if this episode was necessarily the best episode the show has done, but it certainly had a high octane feel to it closer to a Hollywood movie than a television show, and despite the way the explanation of how everything happened is left still a little up in the air (appearently, these people heard a sound and it made them go crazy?) it had a fantastic guest star spot by Bryan Cranston and plenty of great car chases and dialogues between Duchovny and Cranston.

    A man is caught driving nearly 100 miles per hour, claiming that he was doing it to save his wife. Mulder and Scully, who have been stuck on junk cases after being pulled off the X-Files and working under an new Assistant Director (a real jerk), quickly discover this mysterious case and Mulder makes sure to get involved, even against orders.

    The episode kicks into a different gear after the man takes Mulder hostage and forces him to drive west as fast as he can. There's a lot of entertaining moments here, particularly the relationship that is born out of Mulder and Crump's interactions I think it's cool to see Vince Gilligan working together with Bryan Cranston before Breaking Bad, and to be honest, you can see some of the frantic madness that Cranston would bring to Gilligan's show nearly a decade later.

    As I said before, the episode certainly wasn't the greatest the show has done, but I was impressed with how exciting it was. The last two episodes have left me feeling good about how Season 6 should turn out. Hopefully, we'll get some good stand-alone episodes to go with the myth-arc ones like this one.
  • Mulder has to drive faster and faster heading west with a gunman in his car.

    5.5
    For an X-file fan tuning in to see an episode full of aliens and UFO's you'd be hugely disappointed. This was clearly an episode just to make up the numbers. At the start we see the dynamic duo following up on a farmers unusually large fertilizer purchase, as part of their punishment and removal from working on x-file cases. Mulder is so disinterested in it he watches the guys T.V. and sees footage of a high speed car chase. The woman passengers head appears to explode. He tells Scully that they have to go and investigate it against the wishes of their boss Kursch. The man driving ends up in Mulders car and we get half an hour of Mulder driving across California and Scully in a Morgue trying to identify why the womans head exploded.
  • Mulder is stuck in a car with a guy who has a serious headache and the only it can be controlled is by driving west at high speeds. Scully tries to figure out the cause and solution for the problem. Mulder and the man are running out of "west" fast.

    9.0
    I feel this episode gave an ending that was unique to the normal X ending. I realize that it takes a fairly strong script to keep a "car ride" interesting, and they did just that. Not only was it interesting, but very "edge of the seat" anxious tension. Even though there was fear for Mulder, there was more fear for the rear seat passenger. Also, anyone who has ever suffered from migraines, or any severe headaches, can truly empathize with the feller who's head was about to EXPLODE! I can say there has been more than one occasion I felt my head was about to relieve itself from the pressure inside. Thus, watching this episode was almost physically painful, but not because was bad, but because of feeling for the poor guy. I find the ending was terribly sad. I would put this episode in the Top 200 for sure.
  • Go West Young Man

    8.3
    Another romp in the Southern California sun for the formerly rain-drenched X-Files crew. Like the previous episode, this episode is slickly produced and it moves with an assured, easy grace from its exciting beginning to its shocking end. The cinematography continues to be gorgeous by late 1990s TV standards, bright and crisp with nicely saturated colors. The special effects are better than ever. Overall, this episode is a real treat to watch.

    The story isn't much to write home about and there are a fair number of plot holes (e.g. why is only one ear affected for each of the victims?) but the episode is so entertainingly written and paced that we can forgive the rather hokey story. This is pure popcorn TV.
  • An average episode - nothing special. Busy work for Mulder and Scully, and a none too creative premise for gov't conspiracy.

    6.9
    I found this episode to be interesting, but only mildly so. It's necessary for there to be these stand-alone episodes but after The Beginning, it's hard to keep our minds off of the conspiracy, Fowley and Spender, and Gibson Praise. I was distracted by these factors floating around, but I think if I had watched this episode on its own, outside of its relevance in the overarching myth arc, I may have enjoyed it more. I didn't really enjoy the lack of believability about Scully's handling of the quarantine situation. When she decided the lab was quarantined, why didn't she lock the doors immediately? If a lab technician walked in and was potentially infected then shouldn't she have forced him in, instead of OUT? I did like the Drive/Speed aspect of the episode, it made for some tense scenes and good car chasing. As for characterization, I always love the way David Duchovny plays Mulder in tense situations. Always keeping his cool, has a sense of humor, tries to get in with the bad guy so he can gain his trust.. The actor who played Krump was quite good as well, and the two of them had a convincing chemistry between them. Mixing in a bit of racist anger was interesting as well.
  • The one where being deaf is a good thing

    9.9
    An excellent second episode, a bit cringe-worthy at moments but once you get it, it’s fantastic and disturbing at times.

    The episode begins with a car chase, a man has a woman in the back and when they’re caught the woman’s head suddenly explodes in the police’s car. The scene was very well done, cold and disturbing.

    Mulder and Scully see it on tv and instead of continuing the job that they were send to do, they go to solve that other case. When the guy in jail begins to bleed he knows that it has started and he goes nuts, when he’s taken to an ambulance is when he begins to get better, so he takes the men out and leaves in the ambulance. Mulder follows him with his car but then he takes Mulder’s car and makes him drive.

    Meanwhile when Scully investigates the body something comes out of the woman, Scully is afraid that she might be infected now. So they stay in quarantine, the woman’s ear has as if there was a bomb in it which caused this.

    Mulder and the guy soon begin to bond when they first call each other names but then the guy tells Mulder about his problem. He thinks that the government did it. They have to keep doing the right way and when Mulder has to put gas he decides to steal a car because that takes a shorter time. Meanwhile Scully with a suit goes to the house of the people, they find a dog but the dog explodes when they keep it down. Everything that could hear died and exploded the same way, only they find an old woman who’s deaf and that’s why she didn’t have that. When they begin to run out of west, Scully has to help very quickly. She could make him deaf which would help and the man goes for it. When Scully arrives it’s already to late, he couldn’t wait and dies. The episode has a very touching end. The script was fantastic and Mulder’s desperation to save the man made his character more loveable.
  • Overall, this episode was one of the strongest episodes of the sixth season, especially in terms of character development. Both Mulder and Scully demonstrate how they have changed since the events of the film, in small but recognizable ways.

    8.0
    After a problematic season premiere, the producers quickly turned to Vince Gilligan to get the “episodic” side of the season off to the right start. The series needed to showcase the advantages of the Los Angeles shooting locations, and this was the perfect episode to allow for it. Despite a somewhat clichéd plot device that lifts a couple concepts from the film “Speed”, this is a nice example of how the increasingly iconic nature of the characters allowed for some great stand-alone episodes.

    In the wake of the film, building on what had already started in the fourth and fifth seasons, the characters had attained something of an iconic status in the popular culture. It was no longer necessary, from a certain point of view, to address Mulder or Scully’s past history or psychology to make an episode work. Just about everyone understood that Mulder was the believer and Scully was the skeptic, but both were aligned in a search for the truth.

    So in many instances, the plots in the sixth (and seventh) season became a question of dropping Mulder and Scully into an unusual setting or situation and seeing what happens. When the writers took the opportunity to reveal changes in the characters due to recent events or sides to their personality that track with earlier revelations, that particular type of episode worked just fine. When those aspects were missing, the episode were less than impressive.

    This is an instance where the concept works, especially in terms of Mulder’s motivations and Scully’s approach. The evolution is more obvious with Scully, because it doesn’t take her long to move into “extreme possibilities”. She quickly and methodically ventures into territory of conspiracy and unusual biology without much in the way of refutation. This is something that Gilligan does very well: exploring the subtle shifts in Scully’s perspective over time, as her world view becomes more and more influenced by Mulder’s strength of belief.

    The episode is unusual from the very beginning, providing a completely viable reason for Mulder to learn about the incident and consider it worthy of his attention. Placing it on a news broadcast is about as “exposed” as it gets, and yet the footage is not so bizarre as to strain reality. The vast majority of television viewers wouldn’t catch the true depth of the oddity of Vicky’s death. It would just be noticed as a horrible, terrible tragedy.

    The continuity here makes perfect sense. Mulder and Scully would have been dealing with the aftermath of their experience in “Fight the Future” no later than September 1998, roughly 3-4 months after their reassignment to domestic terrorism duty. Even accounting for a month-long debriefing, that leaves another month or two of the same assignment under Assistant Director Kersh. All told, by this point in the timeline, it’s no surprise that Mulder is losing his mind. He’s been doing grunt work for about six months, after years of doing exactly what he wanted to do.

    Scully gets to play the more calm and rational partner, reminding Mulder that they gain nothing by playing outside of the rules yet again. For all his excitement over the chance to get back in the saddle, Mulder approaches the situation (at least initially) with a very reserved and professional manner. It’s easy to forget that Mulder is a very good investigator; it’s just his impulsive nature that sometimes gets in the way of his insight and judgment.

    Things quickly get out hand. Scully begins her examination of Vicky Crump without taking nearly enough precaution (note the complete lack of eyewear or surgical mask), just in time for Mulder to be taken hostage by Patrick Crump himself (played perfectly by the versatile Bryan Cranston). What was supposed to be a simple day in Nevada degrades into a major situation with plenty of negative exposure for the agents.

    What makes this particular episode revealing for Mulder is his handling of Crump over the course of the situation. Mulder has every reason to stop the car and walk away, leaving Crump to his fate. Crump certainly does everything possible to insult and disparage Mulder and his probably ancestry. At least, he does until Mulder’s motivations prove to be genuine.

    Even better, for all that Crump is completely out of line with his anti-Semitism, he’s completely correct in his assumption that the government is behind his condition. One of the most interesting things about the story is the fact that it’s based on actual reported cases of the effects of ELF on humans. It just takes the idea to the extreme. As noted elsewhere, the writers on the episode discovered this fact in their own research; the military was and is aware of possible biological and psychological effects of ELF on human beings.

    This is significant, because instead of Mulder (who would accept the idea with relative ease, as seen), Scully is the one coming to that conclusion. And more to the point, she does it based on the science. Rather than finding odd and contrary reasons to deny the possibility, Scully accepts what the evidence suggests and acts accordingly. This is the Scully that should have come out of “Fight the Future”, in lieu of the version presented in the previous episode by Chris Carter.

    Kersh represents an interesting shift in the fortunes for both agents. Ironically, Kersh demonstrates the same attitude and obedience that Skinner demonstrated in “Tooms” and many first and second season episodes thereafter. It’s quite clear that Kersh is working as Cancer Man’s handler for Mulder and Scully, and he’s just waiting for them to pull something big enough and damning enough (which is exactly the psychological space Cancer Man wants them to be in).

    Perhaps the most effective aspect of this episode is the ending. Under most circumstances, one would assume that Mulder and Scully will succeed, thus giving them something to put in front of Kersh as evidence of their good work. Instead, their efforts fail miserably. Crump dies and any justification they might have had (in saving a man’s life) dies in the process. Kersh has them right where Cancer Man wants them, and Mulder knows all too well where he stands.

    Instead of playing the peacemaker, Scully responds with equal annoyance and disgust. And Kersh doesn’t give her the chance to present an argument to “persuade” him. In terms of Kersh, this immediately casts him as a villain in the eyes of the audience; as with Skinner in the early seasons, the character is slowly revealed as a man trapped.

    The end result is an episode that seemed to promise a sixth season with just as much edge as the audience could reasonably expect. The irony is that the season would quickly take a turn into more and more self-parody, to the point where the characters were treated more as icons with little need for character advancement than viable individuals with potential for growth. The unfortunate consequence is that many new fans took to the lighter side of the series at the expense of strong episodes like “Drive”. It would take a major change for the writing staff to break out of their self-imposed constraints.
  • A pretty good episode, much better then the previous one.

    8.8
    A pretty good episode, much better then the previous one.

    No Mulder/Scully interaction except at the beginning. Poor things on "manure duty", that's a long way from the X-files.

    Mulder driving around in a car the entire episode was a little boring though, it (and the title) reminded me of a certain movie "Speed". But the guy was right, what happened to him & his wife, and as it turns out, alot of other people & animals was the governments fault.

    I love the end when they were in the office with director Kersh, adding up all the cost's of their little "adventure".
  • Missed the Mulder/Scully contact, but still good

    8.7
    A good episode, but not their best. At the beginning, I was really lost because I thought it was really a news report, but then I realised it wasn’t and actually did like the way it began. It was really different. The humour of always, is still there, which is always comforting.

    I missed the whole “Mulder/Scully” contact or disagreement or tension or whatever they have between them. It’s a real bummer that they’re still not on the X-files and what Director Kersh is making them do, is really punishment.

    I felt real bad for Mulder at the end, when we saw that Mr. Crump didn’t make it, because I think he thought it was his fault, when actually, he was only trying to help.
  • I have to qoute Mulder. They did this one already - in the movies.

    8.2
    This episode was about a man who had to drive very fast - towards the west. Only west. Okay, but while our team was trying to find out what was wrong and how to fix it, we were all saying to ourselves "we've seen this with Keenu Reeves and a bus" on the big screen. Okay, maybe not the same thing, but it is a shot once again that shows how X-files is a redundant mass of taking plots from movies and books and any other media and weaving it into a story of their own.
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