The X-Files

Season 3 Episode 1

The Blessing Way (2)

Aired Wednesday 8:00 PM Sep 22, 1995 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (15)

Write A Review
out of 10
369 votes
  • The Navajo Indians try to revive Mulder and Scully finds that her life is in danger.

    The following episode from anasazi continues where Mulder is apparently dead but is found for the Mexicans and they try to revive him.Scully also finds her job in jeopardy and her life when she is approached by a man who works with the cancer man who tells her she is in danger and that someone she trusts could kill her.Scully finds there is no one she can trust when she believes Skinner is trying to kill her.Scully's sister is also killed by Krycek when before she is about to meet with Scully.This is another episode left on a cliffhanger when Skinner and Scully both hold a gun up to each other.This will definitely be another good season and I can't wait to watch more.
  • The Blessing Way

    The Blessing Way was a perfect opening episode of season three of The X-Files. The story picked up right were it left off and featured some really awesome scenes. I was very entertained with the story, character and plot development, and all of the action, drama and intrigue!. It was interesting to see what happened in the box car in the past. I liked Mulder's spaced out visions. It was a little scary seeing how easily the government could track people, how easily they would kill to conceal their secrets, and just how deep the conspiracy may go. It was awesome watching Mulder undergo the ceremony of The Blessing Way. Scully found herself in a lot of trouble and the ending was definitely a thrilling cliffhanger. I certainly look forward to watching what happens next!!!!!!!!!
  • My favorite cliffhanger in X-Files history


    "Blessing Way" is about loss and sacrifice. Scully loses her partner and her job; Mulder loses his father and nearly loses his life. Both of them are stripped down to the bedrock of commitment: who do you believe? Who do you trust? Who do you believe in? Surrounded by hostility and deception, Scully turns as cold and hard as ice. Even a precious scene with Frohike cannot soften her to human warmth again. Fear and isolation are turning her into a female counterpart of Mr. X: suspicious, jumpy, and unhappy. We see relatively little of Mulder in "Blessing Way", as the middle act does for Scully what the first act did for him: depriving her of all support, to hang alone and defenseless in the howling dark.

    I could have done without the over narration by Albert Hosteen though. His dialogue, along with that of Bill Mulder and Deep Throat in the dream sequence, borders on the pretentious. The image of the white buffalo calf was wasted. Its importance as a symbol and its relevance to either plot or subtext was never brought out. An image is effective because it speaks beyond its surface meaning to an unconscious recognition we can never precisely explain.

    Also, failing to explain Mulder's escape from the boxcar in part one of this story-arc is almost unforgivable. While I can speculate on tunnels, secret compartments, or teleportation, there comes a point where some questions simply must be answered.

    That being said, I absolutely loved the ending to this episode. It is my favorite cliffhanger in X-Files history. Scully and Skinner pointing their guns at one another. I still remember the first time I saw it. It's so well exectued that it makes up for almost any flaw in the storyarc. Of which there are few.

  • Season 3 picks up exactly where Season 2 left off

    I think it'd be a mistake for people to actually believe that Mulder would die here. There's no way that the main character of a show would be killed off two seasons into a show. That being said, the way we're slowly brought back into the show is superb and the way the conspiracy continues to unravel shows a writing team that knows what they're doing.

    We immediately jump back into the action of things, following Scully as she is fired by the FBI for her insubordination while Skinner struggles to do the right thing and help her while trying to avoid the wrath and the power of the Cigarette Smoking Men. Meanwhile, while everyone thinks Mulder is dead, he's actually alive, saved by the Anasazi, and after seeing his father and Deep Throat in a dream, he decides to figure out what his father was hiding from everyone.

    This is only the second part of a trilogy, so there's clearly even more story to tell, but the way the episode ends is completely on a cliffhanger. It appears that Skinner is going to try to help and that he may even know more than he lets on. Meanwhile, the Cigarette Smoking Man proves to be an adversary with a huge network of friends who can help bring down Mulder and Scully.
  • And you thought Mulder was dead...

    Not! But obviously we knew he wasn't.

    Scully loses her job for protecting Mulder, however, I never saw any hint or sign of sorrow in her. Maybe what they said was true, she was the Ice Queen.

    Pretty shocking news, Scully having an implant embedded in her neck, I think this subplot created some of the best episodes of the series.

    It was really sad to see Melissa get shot because I was hoping that her character could be developed and see her interact more with Scully, being the two of them so different could've brought great moments.

    Poor Scully, she faced a big dilemma not knowing who was coming after her, who to trust, believing Mulder was alive and then told he was dead, but I now think it was to much for her to process to waste time crying for him.
  • The second part of what I consider the best X-Files trilogy!

    After the excellent second season's finale, The Blessing Way is the ideal continuation to the series and the best way to start the third season. This episode may not be as action packed as Anasazi or Paper Clip are but what it lacks in action it pays it back in atmosphere and character development. The introduction of the Syndicate and Scully's discovery of the implant in the base of her neck set for an amazing continuation to the mythology and raise the bar for the future episodes. I also liked how they included the Native American myths and Navajo's story in the shows mythology and I loved Scully and Skinner's interaction. Their scenes were very powerful and Mitch Pileggi and Gillian Anderson did a fantastic job. Among my favorite parts are also the conversation between Scully and Well Manicured Man, Frohike's visit to Scully, Scully's visit to her mother, Deep Throat's appearance and the final scene with Scully and Skinner at the standoff.
  • 2nd of the 3 parter classic

    The Blessing Way is the continuation of season two's finale Anasazi where Fox Mulder was supposedly killed by an explosion in a buried rail car. Anasazi was at such a high level of drama and excitement, it would be hard to follow it up with as much intensity. The Blessing Way is a great episode but falls a little short of Anasazi. A lot of the episode deals with Mulder's recovery through a Native American ritual called 'the blessing way'. For me, that's where the episode loses a lot of its tension. Mulder lying on a bed being talked about by a Native American and being talked to by deceased persons doesn't do it for me. The other half of the story has to do with Scully dealing with Skinner, a member of the Consortium, and finding an implant in your neck. The Scully side of the story has a lot of good drama and intensity. That's why I gave this episode an 8. The end of the episode is worth the wait, and takes us into the third part of this story, Paper Clip.
  • Some interesting developments

    And so we return to the X Files universe after last season's show-stopping season ender, only to open up with a curiously broken-backed episode. That's not to say that "The Blessing Way" is lacking in action – quite the contrary – but by dividing itself into two distinct halves it suffers from a stop-go pace. This is because the Scully story pushes on with a great dynamic, and one of the finest revelations that this series has ever sprung on us. The Mulder story however is largely comatose like the character himself and this only helps in slowing down the action. The main focus here though is on Scully and her ever-increasing efforts to rail against the conspiracy against the agents. There is a real feeling that this conspiracy is just alarmingly big, coming in the form of military personnel swooping down on her from the sky, or from within the ranks of the FBI itself as she finds herself stripped of her status. But clearly working with Mulder has galvanised Scully and in this episode she is not afraid to buck the system or ask the questions that need to be asked. This is particularly true with regard to her very spiky relationship with Skinner, whose motivations are most intriguingly shadowy. The fact is that the more Scully ferrets away at getting answers, the greater risk she runs of exposing herself and her family to extreme danger. Already we are familiar with the insidious nature of the Cigarette Smoking Man's duplicity, although his role is surprisingly cut back in the episode, presumably to make way for the introduction of the Syndicate.

    This is a shrewd move on Chris Carter's part and it gives the conspiracy a respectable face. CSM's actions are usually so suspect and out there that it's interesting to see that he actually answers to a cabal that is coated with the veneer of respectability. Somehow this makes it seem more dangerous, and the implication is that these are all important businessmen, presumably with some very highly powered connections. The casting of John Neville as the Well Manicured Man pays off excellently. He is gloriously sleek and sinister in his major scene when he confronts Scully at Bill Mulder's funeral.

    Never afraid to up the ante and increase pressure on the protagonists, Carter does away with Scully's vaguely irritating new age sister. We know that this will have impact on Scully at a later date but the major revelation of this episode has to be that defining moment when she walks through the FBI's main entrance metal detector and discovers her implant. This brings the conspiracy shockingly and frighteningly home to her. Not only was she a victim of a staged abduction but she has also been some kind of monitored guinea pig following it. As a plot twist, it's a superb choice, giving Scully some real hard concrete vested interest in finding out why this has been done to her. The fact that her repressive nature doesn't exactly make her a good candidate for regressive hypnosis means that we should be able to get some valuable mileage from this exciting plot development. Meanwhile, back in the land of American Indian mysticism, Mulder sits the episode out, having occasional visions of dead people. And it doesn't work. The visitations of Deep Throat and his father serve no real purpose only to allow Carter to write some of his most portentous dialogue. In fact the whole Mulder lying on the brink of death scenario is the episode's weakest factor. Partly because we never for one single moment buy the fact that we are going to be without David Duchovny, and also because it just all feels like padding. Indian rituals are all very well, but "The Blessing Way" overplays its hand in this department. (The one intriguing aspect of Mulder's spirit-like state is in his pretentiously worded "appearance" to Scully in a dream, which suggests that she has a lot more in common with Melissa than she would have us believe.) So overall, a welcome return, with some wonderful new plot developments that bode well for the continued longevity and intrigue of the series. We just need Mulder back in action now. 7/10
  • Mulder Goes There And Back Again

    What a great episode! Loved the title, which I recognized from the book referenced in the notes section. The Navajo spiritualism really worked for me and I adored the Navajo narrator, his slow and easy warmth was a nice counterpoint to the frenetic action of last season's closer, "Anasazi." And what a great idea to make this season's opener only part 2 of a 3 part Mythology story arc! Some criticisms I have are that the Mulder-as-Christ symbolism was a bit too heavy and the whole firing/rehiring of Scully and Mulder is getting predictable and old. Also it is unfortunate that they are killing off Scully's hot, hot, hot sister....

    With this great season opener, the series seems to have found its groove as the production values and the writing have reached a very high level.
  • Not the conclusion, but the middle.

    Knowing, as a DVD watcher, that this is only part 2 of 3, I wasn't too disappointed with this episode. I knew that as the middle part, it would not offer much in the way of conclusion but merely plot development. Oh but I remember the pain of waiting for this season opener and the pain of being left with just another "To Be Continued.." It was awful. Anyway, the episode on its own is a fine example of an X-File myth arc episode. Actually, it was really good in showing character development for the CSM. This is where you see more to him than a shadowy figure enwreathed with smoke. Here, we see him as a desperate pawn in the conspiracy game, with more power than Mulder and Scully, but certainly struggling to keep on his feet. It was a neat depiction of the constant cat and mouse game that the X-Files government is portrayed as playing, within and without its organization. Scully's job being threatened, and her subsequent doubt and personal breakdown (and the deleted scene!) were all very well done. And the last thing I'd like to address is the characterization of Walter Skinner. I know many of the fans felt that the shows producers were making him a sort of ambiguous, for-us or against-us character depending on what the plot called for. However, I think that this is merely a showing of the skill of the producers. Skinner, to us, is as ambiguous as he is to Mulder and Scully. We, the viewers, see him in the same gray light as the agents do. We don't know if we can trust him or not, and in this episode it seems that he's on the edge, being pushed this way and that. And honestly, Skinner himself seems unsure of his loyalties at this time. Of course, he is getting pushed more and more toward being on Mulder and Scully's side, as he finally makes a bold step to make a bargain in favor of the agents and pitting himself against the CSM.

    My only problem with this episode was the slow, plodding voice-over narration by Hosteen (sp?) riddled with Native American folklore. I'm sure if it was presented in another manner, it would have been more interesting but for me, it felt like a history lesson droning on and on. Also, am I really supposed to buy that Mulder was nearly dead and waving sage brush over his body and drawing with sand was what saved him? The skeptic in me finds this really hard to believe. They didn't even feed him any medicinal compounds that could possibly explain Mulder's recovery. Ah well. Next episode.
  • "Something lives only as long as the last person who remembers it"

    The episode "The Blessing Way" is of course the episode that continues where Season 2 ended; in the desert with Fox Mulder in the burried train and the words "burn it!".

    It must be said that this episode is a bit slower than expected. The parts where the natives are trying to bring Fox Mulder back to the world of the living is being accompanied by ancient traditions which can get a bit tedious for the viewer.

    Though there happens quite a lot in the episode as well. We see alien lifeforms (alive and dead) from up close, my favourite character (Alex Krycek) returns and we experience the classic "trust no-one" atmosphere.

    Oh, and who is that at the door at Mulder's place? It's yet again a "To be continued..." episode.
  • a slow return to the series

    “The Blessing Way” is the Opener to Season Three of the X-files. And everyone one makes an appearance including – Deep Throat, Krycek, Mulders Mum and Dad and Skully’s Mum and Sister. But I have to say that this episode is a bit of a slower burner. The story is narrated by the native Indian from last season’s cliff hanger finale. The smoking man works quickly to recover the stolen computer files, while Skully finds her self on the bad side of a few hitmen. Overall, I would say that this episode is above average, as it is a slow return to the series- not many things happen.
  • The one where Mulder comes back from the dead

    This is so far the best episodes, even though I entirely loved ‘Anasazi’ I thought this one was even stronger.

    It begins with CSM going to Albert’s place, he asks him to tell where Mulder is but he says he doesn’t know.

    Scully is being fired too, she is mad at Skinner but he doesn’t seem too overly happy either. He wants to find Mulder too.

    When the indian’s find Mulder, they want to save him or at least try. Albert has his doubts, he says that only the blessing men can save him and Mulder has to have enough ‘wanting’ on coming back.

    Scully finds on the newspaper that the guy who found the disks was executed, she goes to Skinner with this information but he says it’s useless. The only prove was the disk.

    What I most loved about the episode was Mulder dying, the rituals that were performed to bring him back were great. He sees Deep Throat who tells him to hang on, he sees his dad as well and asks Mulder for forgiveness, also tells Mulder that Samantha isn’t there with them, meaning that she is still alive.

    Scully also finds a chip in her, she wants to know what it is and it’s some sort of mechanican thing, a ship or small computer that was probably put into her when she was abducted by aliens.

    Mulder himself woke on the third day of being treated by the Indian’s, it was his rebirth.

    Scully herself dreams about Mulder and that he is telling her to be alive, she believes he is and goes to Bill’s funeral. She tells Mulder’s mom that he will be allright, then she meets a man who tells her that not only Mulder is dead but she is also in danger of dying, that someone she trusts will shoot her.

    When Scully leaves her apartment of fear, she finds Skinner who wants to talk to her. In meanwhile Melissa goes to Scully’s home and when she opens the door Krycek shoots her in the head.

    Scully brings Skinner to Mulder’s old home and points a gun at him. She thinks that he is going to kill her and someone is waiting outside, Skinner and Scully end up pointing their guns at each other.

    This episode was exciting, well written and acted. The second and best part of this three-parter.
  • This is the conclusion to the mega-cliffhanger at the end of season two.

    Well, at the end of "Anasazi" (finale of season 2) the X-Files writers pulled the ultimate cop-out; they pretended to kill off the main character. The way they bring Mulder back is a bit cheezy and over-done, but the episode is very important to the mythology of the X-files. If it wasn't for the cheeziness in Mulder's resurrection, this would easily be a 10.
  • With Mulder in jeopardy in New Mexico, back in Washington, Scully is left with no one to trust. In a time when she needs it the most.

    With Mulder neardeath, the Navajo indians perform "The Blessing Way" to revive him. While Scully, now on leave from the FBI, is approached in Washington, by a man warning her of an attempt on her life. Scully is left skeptical but becomes paranoid and flees her home, leaving her family without her in Washington. This episode is intense and frightening. With Scully on the run and Mulder in danger, it is a series classic.