The X-Files

Season 4 Episode 19


Aired Monday 9:00 PM Apr 13, 1997 on FOX



  • Trivia

    • Plot Hole: Scully stated in her thesis, that one universe can only produce one outcome. From that, Mulder believes that history cannot be changed and that, in the end, timetravel will be invented. However, the events prove, that history can indeed be changed, as the photo is never taken and yet exists. So either both Scully and Mulder are wrong or it is a mistake the writers of this episode made.

    • In the shot of the 6th Precinct police station, it has a California state flag flying out front. The episode took place in Massachusetts, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    • When Lisa gets off the bus, the number of the bus is different to the one we saw heading downtown, the one that she presumably was on.

    • Scully's statement that she was 23 when she wrote her senior thesis in college throws off her timeline of college, med school, residency, FBI Academy, Quantico teaching assignment for two years, and X-Files assignment at 28. Her undergraduate degree in Physics should have been completed when she was 20 or 21 to allow at least 4 or 5 years for her medical training.

  • Quotes

    • Mulder: I think the real question is how somebody could have had access to a compound that doesn't exist.

    • Mulder: So what's your medical opinion Scully?
      Scully: Well my best guess would be that he's been exposed to some kind of chemical refrigerant, like liquid nitrogen, possibly even ingested it.
      Mulder: Well, you see what happens when you drink and drive?

    • Scully: It's a celebration, but of what?
      Mulder: Of something that never happened.
      Scully: What? Mulder, this is a photograph. It is a documented moment in time.
      Mulder: In a future that somebody is trying like hell to prevent from happening.
      Scully: What?
      Mulder: Think about it, Scully. If Lucas Menand never gets hit by the bus, his complaint gets heard before the grant committee. Jason Nichols loses his funding and he never gets to collaborate on his research with Dr. Yonechi. Therefore, this photograph never gets taken because this celebration never happens.
      Scully: Yeah, and if your sister is your aunt and your mother marries your uncle, you'd be your own grandpa.

    • Mulder: Although common sense may rule out the possibility of time travel, the laws of quantum physics certainly do not. In case you forgot, that's from your graduate thesis. You were a lot more open-minded when you were a youngster.

    • Mulder: He gave a rather detailed description of the old man.
      Scully: What was he wearing, a long black robe and carrying a scythe?

  • Notes

    • The molecular model of the "freezing" catalyst shown in this episode contains less than 10 atoms and likely corresponds to a common organic compound rather than any fictional catalyst.

    • This episode marks the first reference to NMR spectroscopy on The X-Files.

    • Hiro Kanagawa has also appeared in a previous episode of X-Files. He played Peter Tanaka in second season's episode "Firewalker".

    • Guest Writer David Greenwalt and Howard Gordon will work together again when Gordon joins the crew of Buffy the Vampire Slayer as a Consulting Producer and as a Staff Writer on the spinoff series Angel. Interestingly, Greenwalt was originally offered a job as a Writer for The X-Files but turned it down to work on Buffy.

  • Allusions

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