The X-Files

Season 5 Episode 9

Schizogeny

1
Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Jan 11, 1998 on FOX
7.3
out of 10
User Rating
254 votes
6

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
A therapist working with children from abusive families is found to be implanting them with the memories of her own abuse suffered at the hands of her late father, when one of her patients tries to kill his stepfather.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Schizogeny

    9.0
    Schizogeny was a superbly entertaining episode of The X-Files and I really enjoyed watching. There was a lot of interesting characters and the story was very well written. There was a dark mystery which was fun to watch be unraveled by Mulder. The psychological aspect of the episode touched upon the serious matter of child abuse and it's ramifications. Sinking in the mud is scary and the scenes were pretty well done. I liked the ending which was a little horrific in it's own way but definitely X-Files worthy. I look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!moreless
  • I do not think it was that bad

    8.0
    I could say this episode could be a sort of "trouble" if it had been written in the Haven universe. There could be some holes in the plot but still it was a regular episode in probably a regular week.

    I like episodes where psychology plays a part and in this case, Karin Matthews was so fed up and traumatized about all those years of abuse that she wanted revenge somehow. And she sought revenge in the most horrible way. Also, I liked that Mulder could use his psychological background to try to solve this case.moreless
  • Worst Episode Since "Space"

    4.0
    Killer trees.



    Yup, that's pretty much all you need to know about this complete dud of an episode. What were they thinking? This is the first (and so far only) episode that had my finger hovering over the fast forward button, watching the time counter crawl its way to the 45 minute mark. It is remarkably bad and one surmises that it's because the real writers/directors were too busy with the feature film to care about this episode, which seems to have been handed off to some new, no-name director and writers.



    There is ZERO energy or chemistry in this episode. It is strictly by-the-numbers generic TV horror. The actress playing Karin was interesting - beautiful but with a foreboding intensity. Unfortunately, she isn't really used much until the final third of the episode. Other than her, I really have nothing positive to say about this episode.



    Scully seems to be along just for the ride as she passively follows Mulder from door to door as the two of them clomp first to one teenager's house then to another. Scully doesn't even participate in the autopsy of one of the fathers. Instead, it is Mulder who is there to point out a rather large splinter in the father's neck that was missed by the doctor! Just awful.



    So which is worse, "Space" or this turkey? I can't decide, but I do give "Space" some leeway since it was aired very early in the series. There is simply no excuse for the badness of "Schizogeny" at this point in the series. Perhaps that's reason enough to "crown" it as worst episode to date.moreless
  • Mulder and Scully vs. killer trees

    6.5
    I wish I could say that this episode had some promise and that it's disappointment is born out of some problem in adapating the words to the screen, but even the premise of the episode seems lame. By the time the episode is over, I was left wondering why in the world we needed to see this episode.. besides one line, I find myself not caring.



    A boy's father is sucked into the ground while they're having an argument one night, and while Scully thinks that the boy dug a hole for the father to sink into, Mulder believes there's something more sinister at work. They begin investigating the situation and realize that abuse has something to do with the deaths that are happening. They also come to realize that the trees that are dying in the forest in the region also have something to do, which is where the show gets its supernatural element.



    Overall, the episode just didn't work for me. There wasn't even an interesting case to anchor it all down, which meant that a lot of the episode had to rely on the relationship between Mulder and Scully and the goofy back-and-forth's that they have with each other. Besides one line from Mulder ("Tell me Scully, does this boyish display of agility turn you on at all?"), there wasn't much between them. In fact, Mulder didn't seem to be himself for the entire episode.



    Season 5 had a ridiculous string of great episodes to open the season, so I suppose they're allowed one dud of an episode.moreless
  • The one with daddy issues

    10
    I loved this episode, it’s an emotional episode about child abuse and still manages to bring enough horror into it. ‘Schizogeny ’ is be a very good and extremely underrated episode.



    The episode begins with a young man called Bobby having a fight with his father, he tries to stand up for himself but fails and runs into the woods, his father running behind him but suddenly his father gets buried and Bobby tries to rescue him but fails, there is someone else in the woods with an axe watching them,



    The police believes that Bobby murdered him but it’s impossible to burry such a big hole and he is a 16 year old kid who isn’t near as strong to do it. There is a girl at school who also has daddy issues. He tells her to stand up for herself but she is frightened of him. She goes home and he follows her, inside the house her father tells her not to hang out with Bobby anymore, when he goes into the room and looks outside the window he suddenly falls out of the window and dies.



    Both of the children have the same shrink, her name is Karen and the fathers started to abuse their children when they started to go to her because Bobby couldn’t make friends and the girl had an eating disorder.



    Mulder and Scully go and investigate the crime, Mulder finds wood on the father. They go to a tree and they see an old man they had seen before, the trees are starting to die and he says that someone is controlling them, he hacks one and blood comes out of it.



    When Karen takes the girl home she locks her in the attic together with another body. Karen is possessed of some kind. When the aunt comes the next day to pick up the girl she sees her screaming in the attic, when she tries to save her she gets stabbed through the chest by the tree and killed.



    Apparently Karen was the one who was possessed by her dead father, he’s controlling her and she hasn’t been able to stand up to him. Now he uses her to hurt the other kids. Karen was the one who killed her abusive father who now possesses her and she has his body in the attic.



    When Karen goes up to kill Bobby in the woods he tries to stand up for himself but she begins to burry him, Mulder is right on him but gets buried with Bobby. The weird old man with an axe cuts off Karen’s head because she had already died and now she has finally rest.



    I loved this episode, it captured child abuse so well and how much it can hurt them. Karen was released from her pain when she finally died. And the horror was also very good, when a tree attacked Mulder/ There were plenty of great scenes and good acting during this episode, it’s extremely underrated and one of my favorites of the season.

    moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (9)

    • In the opening scene we see a kid playinga game and listening to music. The song he's listening to is Rob Zombie feat. Alice Cooper - Hands of Death

    • It is a second episode that makes reference to a Thrash Metal band Megadeth (the first one being Die Hand Die Verletzt, with Mulder saying to Scully: "Better hide your Megadeth albums"). About 6 minutes into the episode camera centers on a wall covered in posters one of them being the cover of Megadeths 1990 album Rust in Peace.

    • The video game Bobby Rich plays during the episode is Shiny Entertainment's MDK.

    • Factual Error: Mulder's translation of the Kennedy quote is wrong. He says the following: "You know when Kennedy told the Germans 'Ich bin ein Berliner' he was actually saying 'I am a cocktail sausage'?" A "Berliner" is not a "cocktail sausage", that would be a "wiener". Rather, a Berliner is a German deep-fried, jam-filled dough, similar to a doughnut (without the hole). What Kennedy meant to say was "I am a Berliner", which, in German, is "Ich bin Berliner".

    • Goof: When Mulder and Scully are talking at the car after Mulder has dug up the grave, you can hear it raining and thundering. Yet, you can't see raindrops hitting either them or the top of the car between them.

    • When Mulder steps closer to the dead body to discover the root in the man's neck, you can clearly see the dead man's pulse through the base of his neck.

    • After her father is pulled out of the window, Lisa leans out and there is no glass left on the sill, she even places her hands on it. Later when Mulder and Scully look at it, there is all sorts of jagged edges on the sill.

    • When Mulder says the line: "A 16-year-old kid who's classmates lovingly refer to as Dorkweed", it is obvious that "Dorkweed" is dubbed over. From Mulder's mouth movements the original word looks like "Dickweed" or "Dickwad".

    • How did the police or the medical examiner miss that rather large root in the man's neck that Mulder used all of his investigative techniques to discover?

  • QUOTES (5)

  • NOTES (4)

    • Sarah-Jane Redmond (Karin Matthews) also starred as Lucy Butler in Chris Carter's Millennium and as Inga Fossa in his short lived drama series Harsh Realm.

    • Katherine Isabelle, who played Lisa Baiocchi, is the daughter of X-Files production designer Graeme Murray.

    • Scully's line about the town getting "400 inches of rain a day" is a reference to a comment David Duchovny jokingly made about Vancouver during his appearance on Late Night with Conan O'Brien. Mulder's response "Now that's a bit of an exaggeration, don't you think" made the reference particularly humorous.

    • 'Schizogony' (spelled slightly differently than the title) means reproduction by multiple asexual fission.

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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