The X-Files

Season 1 Episode 3


Aired Wednesday 8:00 PM Sep 24, 1993 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (46)

Write A Review
out of 10
641 votes
  • Scully investigates a case with her friend who wants to work his case up the ladder. She slowly begins to despise him the more he puts Mulder down. In the end, it is, of course, Mulder to the rescue.

    A really good episode. I liked some of the humor and some of the pain. I also liked the loyalty Scully showed to Mulder after only 3 episodes. It showed real potential for the wonderful relationship they have in the end. I love how Scully is willing to give up her relationship with an old friend to support Mulder.
  • the creepyness...

    when i first watched this episode, i loved it! i mean comeon, scully gets rescued my mulder! and the bile scene was disgusting but nicely shot. the actor who played eugene tooms was great! he acted as if he was really tooms! when mulder sees scully\'s necklace, he\'s face turns into a stone, and rushes out. at scully\'s house, she doesnt kno that tooms is there and is totally unawered, until a yellow stuff drops from her ceiling! then tooms burst out of a vent a scared the heck out of the veiwers!(it that to me atleast)but mulder get there in time and rescuses scully(loved the scene)
  • After the Violent Crimes Unit fails to profile a serial murderer in the Baltimore area an old friend of Scully's invites her on the case, but along with her comes Mulder, much to the dismay of Scully's friend. Together, Scully and Mulder solve the murder

    After two episodes Gillian Anderson is finally convincing as Dana Scully. Her character is facing turmoil she should have encountered already: becoming aligned with "the FBI's most unwanted," agent Mulder, and after Mulder's integrity outshines Tom's ambition Scully jumps to the aid of her new partner.

    In this way Mulder and Scully are in the early stages of coming together as a unit. Obviously, Mulder, in his quest to uncover the truth behind his sister's abduction and his FBI superior's unease about agent Mulder will lead to trust issues between the two, yet, the potential is developing. Mulder and Scully can work together and the X-Files is branching out to include Scully with Mulder.

    There's an excellent use of light and dark in this episode. A great deal of paranormal activity takes place in dark and unseens spaces, pushing feelings of anxiety since the elements of danger are unknown. It's also a thrifty trick for low budget shows in the infant stages of their development.

    This is the first episode to not call out aliens, UFOs and government conspiracies as a main focal point of the plot, and "Squeeze" proves "The X-Files" has as great potential outisde of the alien conspiracies as it does within the alien conspiracies. The lowest point in the episode comes in the retired police officer's first scene. He's far too generic and abstract, but his character does get a bit of saving grace before the end.

    Perhaps the most chilling aspect of this episode is Toom's grin in his cell at the end. It's clear the case isn't closed despite Toom's capture, and this lack of closure is something which becomes a repeating element of "The X-Files" during its nine running seasons.

    Tooms is just the first to come back.
  • An absolute classic! Squeeze is one of the best loved and most watched episodes and all fans must love this one! Cleverly written and excellently cast.

    Who will ever forget Eugene Victor Tooms?
    Noone that loves the X Files, that's for sure.
    Theis episode gave us a lot of great scenes, a ton of wonderful lines and some visual effects that left us wondering how in the world they pulled that off?!
    I know this wasn't one of my favorites at first, but the more I watched it, the more I loved it.
    Then of course when they made another episode with tooms in it, everyone was dumbfound and excited all at once because who ever heard of coming back to an X Files? Unheard of even in the first season! :)
  • The one with the flexible guy (handy skill)

    Man, season one has a problem with slow beginnings but most end up in a great place. But Squeeze is a disappointment for me. First of all, Tooms-the mutant guy wasn't scary at all and second, the script wasn't really great either and Scully's friend and all the other agents got on my nerves.

    There really wasn't much of a story, just a guy who needed to kill 5 people every 30 years to be able to survive and then he goes after Scully but a miracle happened. Mulder came on time and they caught the criminal. At the end Tooms noticed an opening in the my question becomes. How stupid are those people? why don't they just leave the door open?

  • I have two words for you: Liver-eating mutant. Or is that three? Whichever way you slice it, "Squeeze" is a perfect example of what makes The X-Files so exemplary: terrific casting, imaginitive writing, and perfect characterization.

    Do you think I'm Spooky?
    --Mulder, "Squeeze"

    "Squeeze." This has to be one of my all-time fave X titles...and harbinger of one of the coolest Mulderisms: "How can I get it off my fingers quickly without betraying my cool exterior?" "Anti-Waltons" is another one--I think I'll put that on a Christmas card .

    Just a few random observations:

    Mulder glasses. Now when did we stop seeing those? What a pity.

    The black and white/slow-motion imagery used in the teaser and a bit throughout the episode is reminiscent of some shots in "all things."

    Am I the only freak who thinks Tooms is sorta cute?

    Colton and Co.: The textbook brown-nosing "you know what." The sentiments Scully shared with him (concerning his climb up the corporate ladder) are priceless, and so appropriate you'd think you said them yourself.

    This episode is yet another stellar example of early-Files momentum. The story, while itself is interesting and engaging, is supported by terrific character painting and a setup of Mulder's association with is peers. Also apparent is a foreshadowing of the relationship between Mulder and Scully... His drive, her determination, his passion, her respect. As the dynamic is tweaked over the years, one truth remains evident: Mulder and Scully respect each other's opinions. Despite their differences in beliefs and approaches, they strive to seek the truth in every single case... and it is along those diverging paths that they unwittingly find each other. If all lies lead to the truth, then perhaps all paths lead to the truth as well, to be discovered sometimes happily by accident.

    In effect, that's what Squeeze does for me as an episode. Aside from being one heckuva good story, it also establishes Scully as part of "the team," and perhaps a little something more than just a spy. Doing her best to flout authority by actually respecting her partner, striving to do the best job possible and not bowing to the system, she proves herself a strong and capable person sure of what she wants. She could have distinguished herself as a medical doctor, or even an agent in another section of the Bureau. Mulder could have remained a star profiler for the Violent Crimes division. Point being they did none of these things. In my opinion, Mulder and Scully are alike in that respect. They took the road less traveled, career wise, "and that has made all the difference."


    "In our investigations you may not always agree with me, but at least you respect the journey."
    --Mulder, Squeeze
  • the best episoode is not a tight squeeze

    This has got to be one of the best episodes ever of the X-files. The 2 parter is maghic on so many levels. Also, in the pre alien hunt section of the X-files, there was a lot that was just fun and unknown. Tooms fits this part like a glove.

    The way the facts go, the way the 'evidence' is found is a delight from the beginning, until the unforseen end. So my hat is of to the writer on this one, and let us see more of this.

    So without any further ado: Fox mulder and the raider of the lost Tooms.

    Liver sandwich anyone?

  • Liver Let Die

    One of the creepiest, most original X-Files episodes, Squeeze was the series' first foray into monster-of-the-week territory, successfully steering away from the UFO/alien-type storylines and creating imaginative, memorable bad guys.

    The episode sees Mulder and Scully investigating a series of seemingly random murders in which each victim had their liver removed. Mulder believes the killer is a centuries-old mutant who awakens from hibernation every 30 years to kill five people and eat their bile, in order to sustain himself. The mutant, Eugene Tooms, has the ability to squeeze his body through tiny spaces and sets his sights on Scully...

    The best thing about this episode is undoubtedly the chilling performance from Doug Hutchison as Tooms. He has hardly any lines but is truly unsettling throughout. From his mannerisms to his eyes to his silent glares, Hutchison brings to life what could have been a slightly unspectacular opponent for Mulder and Scully and gives such a good performance that the writers ended up asking him back later in the season.

    The investigation moves along at a steady pace and there's a genuine sense of urgency as the leads have to capture him before he kills his fifth victim. The only annoyance is the direction by Harry Longstreet. The constant swishes of the camera look cheap and tacky and the scene where Tooms attacks his fourth victim look extremely corny. But those are just tiny complaints in an episode which is mostly perfect.

    Featuring a classic bad guy, an intriguing M.O. and some excellent performances, Squeeze is one of the finest hours of The X-Files. An episode every X-Files fan needs to watch.

    Director: Harry Longstreet
    Writers: Glen Morgan, James Wong
    Rating: A+
  • Squeeze me pleeeze me

    What a good episode. I remember this from when I first started to watch the X Files, and it frightened the life out of me. Tooms is so ordinary, but completely whacked. The idea of someone coming inside your house through the tiniest of spaces is chilling. The elongated fingerprints and the way this guy can get into the smallest places is both ridiculous and very eerie. This is definitely one of the early classics in the X Files and showed how the programme could go places that were not comfortable and not always explicable. The whole liver harvesting is a bit daft, but it's why the X Files was and is so compelling
  • A classic example of why The X-Files went from cult favorite to mass hit, Squeeze is the first non alien episode and showed that the series wasn't just a one trick pony.

    Squeeze is from Morgan and Wong, my personal two favorite writers of the show. Aside from a single later episode they wrote, the duo produced some of the absolute finest hours of the show that were non mythology. It is also of note that under this duo's pen Mulder, although not specifically seen here, is amongst his wittiest and funniest.

    The episode, featuring truly horrific character Eugene Toomes, showed that the show wasn't just about aliens and government conspiracies, but about a whole host of other things. This was the first other thing Mulder and Scully faced. While it almost pales in comparison to some of the later stand alone episodes that were to come, it rates so well to me as being the first of its kind for the series.
  • A Personal Favourite.

    Squeeze is the first episode of the X-Files that isn’t about Aliens and is more about the supernatural. A series of mysterious murders take place, with no clues of how they happened, apart form the fact that the kidneys had been removed. Mulder and Skully investigate. A man is apprehended- but there is no way to prove that he did it. He is Eugene Victor Tooms, and the way the actor plays this guy, you will hate him. He plays him really good, and Tooms comes across as a slimy no good so and so. He is set free due to lack of evidence and he goes on a killing spree again, but this time after Skully. Oh I forgot to mention that he is like Mr Fantastic of the Fantastic Four and can stretch any part of his body to fit any shape. This is a great episode, and Tooms is a great Baddie. Great acting, Great Story, Great Everything really. A Personal Favourite.

  • The first X-Files episode to deviate from the alien abduction standard does so with a unique and frightening flare.

    Squeeze is the first official "monster of the week" story of The X-Files, meant to establish early on that this is not just a show about a bunch of different alien abductions. The idea of a serial killer for whom no point of entry is too small is a chilling idea that is carried off well inside a clever script, and will undoubtedly leave the viewer nervously checking their vents before they go to bed each night. The character of Tooms is also memorable, his primal rage so searing that his every word becomes terrifying. Squeeze also begins a lovely X-Files tradition of Scully being targeted by insane whackos, and fans will love nothing more than seeing this woman put up a fight. Squeeze is a first-rate episode that showcases what television can really be when it puts its mind to it.
  • A muntant killer who can squeeze through almost anything kills 5 people a year and hibernates and uses his vitims livers as food comes after Scully for his last victim

    This is such a classic X-Files Episode. The First one not on Aliens. This episode shows that people do make fun of Mulder and how he copes with it. I'm so glad that they made Tooms (squeeze 2) such a classic monster. This episode has Mulders best quote "Is there any way I can get this of without ruinning my cool extirior". Oh I love that. One of the famous bathrooms scenes had me griping to my chair in fright and wonder why Toom's didn't squeeze out of those handcuffs. This episode is just one of those classic monster shows.
  • Starting the creepy stuff

    The X-Files was one of those shows that changed the idea of television. With arcs that went over multiple seasons, it was rather crazy. This is one of the early episodes that shows why this series became one of the coolest things ever. A creepy guy, who has the strangest of genetic mutations is out collecting livers. This was not something that would usually be shown on television. Also, the episode really starts to build up the Mulder and Scully working relationship that becomes the trademark of the series. This episode had perfect atmosphere and a crazy story that draws you and shows you how the rest of the series developed.
  • Fine example of what the X-files can be.

    While this show was early on in the series, it was one of those that helped to establish this series as one of the primer sci-fi shows to be on television.

    The actor who played the main villain was one of those types who could keep a younger kid up at night wondering if someone was going to squeeze through a vent in your room and eat you alive.

    I was particularly pleased with the directors realization that they did not have the best technology available to make a man squeeze through a vent. Rather, he filmed the episode in such a way that you totally believed the main character could actually slip through a mail slot in the door. My compliments to the director, the casting, and to the show as a whole.
  • Bring on the monsters!!!

    After the first two episodes concerning alien abductions comes this creepy monster-of-the-week story that concerns a liver-eating mutant named Eugene Tooms. I know this is highly regarded by many as classic X-Files, but I found this quite slow in places, and not as exciting as Deep Throat. Nevertheless, there are some creepy bits here, such as the opening shot of Tooms under the pavement, and there's also some great humour from Mulder and Scully.

    Scully: Is this what it takes to climb the ladder, Colton?
    Colton: All the way to the top.
    Scully: Then I can't wait till you fall off and land on your ass.
  • The first non-UFO episode, and a memorably creepy hour of television.

    The third episode of the series presents a good example of the "Night Stalker" model that Chris Carter wanted his show to be: a Friday night spookshow with a creepy monster and a fascinating mystery. Appropriately, this is also the episode that originated the opening credits shot of Mulder and Scully breaking into an apartment with their flashlights out: a classic, representative image of the series. The villain here is Eugene Tooms, who contorts his body to squeeze through tight spaces, consumes the livers of his victims, and builds nests to hibernate for decades until his next crime wave. Writers Glen Morgan and James Wong built their reputations on this episode, and soon became the go-to team for creepy X-Files stand-alone episodes. Typical of their style, the episode is witty and taut, and the villain was quickly brought back for "Tooms."
  • “So what is this, the Anti-Walton's?”

    Squeeze is the first “monster of the week” episode. It is also the first time we see classic Scully, conflicted, yet, willing to defend her partner to the bitter end, no matter how crazy his ideas may be. This episodes also marks the beginning of Scully’s slow journey towards believing in extraordinary possibilities as well as the beginning of her eventual isolation from the rest of the Bureau and society. When this episode takes place Scully still has friends outside of Mulder with whom she can interact. Squeeze marks the beginning of Scully's journey from respected doctor/scientist to outsider or Mrs. Spooky. Her eventual isolation has begun, although it has not yet reached the point where Mulder is the center of her universe. The “monster” in this episode is terrifying in that he is, essentially, human--it is the human monsters we tend to fear the most. While the impression is given that Toom’s is something more than human, he still wears humanities skin and as such it is easy for him to live and work among us. Knowing that the monster could be anyone is very frightening. At this point in time, the directors had not quite mastered the iconic darkness of The X-Files, and as such the tone of the episode varies throughout and a sense of dread is not really achieved until the end of the episode. Squeeze is a solid X-Files episode and manages to be quite entertaining despite the continuing logistical working involving the formation of the two main characters.
  • If this doesnt get your heart pumping, what will?

    This episode features Special Agent Fox Mulder and Dana Skully investigating bizarre murders that are committed without an entering being broken. Fox Mulder continues to be made fun of for his belief, and when he turned out to be right, I believe Skully believed more in the paranormal than she ever has before.

    On the other hand, this episode featured one of Skullys old friends, who was trying to get Skully to quit the X-Files department and come to Violent Crimes. Skully considers this at first, but when she is surprised by what Mulder finds out, she decides to stay in the X-Files. Overall, this episode was very special and a great edition to the first season of The X-Files.
  • The intro of Tooms

    This episode kind of appalled me, Tooms was a creepy villian. Kind of makes you think twice, the guy can squeeze to fit into anything, and he's been alive for decades. That is just plain creepy to think about. It's an interesting addition to the series because it certainly is paranormal. Mulder is like fascinated with this suspect. He knows he's right but no one will believe him. And those longer finger prints...Whoa. And Tooms eyes when he sets his sights on a victim, that was creepy as well. This was a creepy episode to the series, but it is still one of the best of the series, I actually read the book they made about this episode before I actually watched the episode, and to me the book is pretty good, but when you see it as an episode it completely blows your mind.
  • Attack of the stretching monster!

    This episode and a couple of others from the first season are the reason why I love this series. Although the whole plot is very bizarre and unreal, the way it is shown and portrayed makes you actually believe that this could have happenned. And that's what I love the most about this show. It makes mythological beings come to life in a real and possible way. This episode's mutant called Tooms is one of those monsters I'd like to just flush down the toilet. it is my personal opinion, but he is just disgusting.

    Mulder is spot on, as usual.
    Scully is not such a downer this time. She actually helps Mulder get on the crime scenes.
  • The first MOTW

    Probably one of the best episodes of this season, this is the first one about a mutant, the famous monster of the week. It's good to see Scully outside her work with Mulder. It's also good to see how she has to stand all her friends and her comments about her "Spooky" partner. What I like is that even when she's just getting to know Mulder, she seems to be upset and angry about it. But she's a professional and accepts to work with them, only to realize that Mulder may be right about his theories than her own friends.
    Eugene Tooms is creepy. His quiet and innocent personality makes you think he wouldn't hurt a fly, but it takes a profiler to uncover what lies beneath that look. The whole case is interesting. Can you imagine a serial killer that can hibernate for 30 years only to wake up, kill and hibernate again? I like how Mulder is very territorial this time and he focus all his energy in finding something to put Tooms in jail. We see for the first time a Mulder trying to save Scully from being killed and at some point this brings them a little bit more close.
    In the end, Tooms is caught and they find all his abnormalities. But who knows if the case is really closed.
  • The first monster of the week and one of all time creepiest

    Squeeze was the first X-Files episode I ever saw and I was immediately hooked in the show. It scared the hell out of me but for some strange reason I couldn't change the channel. Needless to say that I didn't miss an episode since then. Eugene Tooms is one of the creepiest and scariest creatures/villains in The X-Files universe. He has the ability to squeeze into the smallest of spaces and he appears every thirty years to feed on human livers in order to survive for eternity. The episode is very well-written and directed, the actor who plays Tooms is absolutely amazing and Mulder and Scully's dynamic is strong even this early on the series.
    Squeeze is the perfect episode to get someone introduced to the beautiful world of The X-Files beside the Pilot. It captures the magic of the show perfectly.
  • Ooh, that Eugene Tooms! He'll come to no good!

    First, let's get the nit-picky annoyance out of the way. I was always happy to take Eugene Tooms as a monster. He needs livers to survive, and morality doesn't come into it. That's a description that works for me. So why does he take trophies? He lives in a cocoon so why does he need pretty things? This may fit with the serial killer profile, but Mulder acknowledges this doesn't work as it's not about the thrill of breaking security? I felt this was the weak link of the plot, especially as it was necessary to draw attention to Scully's temporary necklace. But moving on...

    Squeeze is a great episode. This is where the music and sound effects really come into gear. The sound of his joints lengthening is really sickening. And Toom's theme? Brilliant!

    There's some wonderful moments of suspense. Like when we know Tooms is coming down the chimney but - phew - the fire is lit. Too late, he's behind you. Eek! On the other hand, it's quite clear Scully will be the next victim. This is a woman who should NEVER run a bath as it always leads to trouble. It's almost a shame Tooms didn't make more effort to escape from the handcuffs, which logically would only slow him down for a moment.

    Tooms is so scary because he's generally under played. He seems to mild mannered and unassuming. But there's always an air of menace. X Files has taught me that if anyone gives you the creeps, you should run away very quickly. I lose a lot of friends that way, but I keep my liver intact.
  • Very well done.

    This episode seemed very well written and put together. The clues were presented in a well organazied fashion. This particular episode also had a plethera of people, other than Mulder and Scully so the viewer got to see other people's views on Mulder. This episode also featured an old detective that was pretty much on the same page as Mulder; I thought this was brillant as well because it helps to substatiate Mulders theory with something other than the fact that it can not be proven by science. Seeing how Scully works with other people other than Mulder, such as old Accademy acquatiences, was also a key componet in this episode. It was wonderful to see the diffrence between her and Mulder and her and others. In short, this was a well written episode, that contained character development, a good plot line, and exciting events. It was well worth watching.
  • A very scary episode!

    I remember this episode well, the first time I ever watched The X-Files I snuck downstairs when it was past my bedtime and watched this episode. It gave me nightmares for weeks! Even watching it now it sends a chill down my spine, I think it's those eyes that creeps me out the most. The episode as a whole was very captivating and that scene at the end in Scully's apartment had me on the edge of my seat the whole time. Overall I think that this was a very strong episode with a bad guy that could frighten even the hardest of people.
  • Is this what it takes to climb the ladder, Colton? Then I can't wait till you fall off and land on your ass.

    One of Scully's friends from the Academy asks for her help on a series of murders that involve no clear point of entry and Scully and Mulder discover similar cases in the X-Files since 1903. Eventually, Scully's profile leads the FBI to a suspect named Eugene Victor Tooms. Eugene Tooms is a liver-eating mutant with the ability to squeeze himself into the smallest places and now is after Scully. Squeeze is a fascinating episode that blends horror with the procedural police drama and Doug Hutchison creates one of the most recognisable and scary villains of the series. It was the episode that hooked me to the show and remains one of my favorites.
  • The X-Files second pilot . . .

    The X-Files had the mytharc and the monsters of the week, two distinct episode types, and so it's almost like it had two pilots. This is the first MOTW, and it's amazing; I was actually afraid of the dark the night after I watched this, and that didn't happen with very many episodes. Chris Carter always says that the X-Files is as scary as it is real, and this episode is a perfect example because, while mutants may or may not exist, we all have ventilation shafts, and what may be coming through them in the dark is all left to the imagination . . . Also, Scully may get saved in this episode, but she puts up not only a good fight but a nearly successful fight before she does so. Hear that sound behind you? Its the sound of the screw turning on your vent. Better get out.
  • One of the best

    This is the first episode I ever saw, and also one of the best. I really enjoyed it and it made me want to immediately add X-files to my Netflix queue in the morning, because it is entertaining, comprehensive, and exciting even to someone who has never seen the show. Scully is absolutely gorgeous in this episode for some reason. She's always gorgeous, but in this episode, she was abnormally stunning. But this is besides the point, because this is just another atribute in a nearly flawless episode. There is not a dull moment, and the story line flows smoothly. Plus, it makes sure to creep you out and look at vents every once in a while.
  • X-Files proves, they are more then UFO's and aliens. If them ETs knew what lives on earth... they wouldnt want to colonize us!

    This is an absolute classic... it has a lot of memorable dialogs and a unique, x-files-exclusive monster! Tooms... the name alone gives me the creeps... but this episode wasnt really about the paranormal... it was about Mulder and Scully, their relationchip, their loyality for each other, it was about Mulder being the geeky freek at the FBI. It was those elements that, combined, made the first season of the X-files that great!
    I think it was a great decision to make the first "monster of the week" a exclusive monster, espesially if it was that great like Tooms, and not a vampire, ghost or werewolf! This is not only a X-Files classic... but a classic in the whole horror-genre!
< 1 2