The X-Files

Season 6 Episode 3

Triangle

1
Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Nov 22, 1998 on FOX
9.1
out of 10
User Rating
390 votes
26

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
Mulder goes to the Bermuda Triangle when he learns that the Queen Anne, a British luxury liner which disappeared during WWII, has re-appeared in the middle of the Sargasso Sea. Mulder's boat is wrecked and after floating in the water, he is hauled aboard the ship which has just been hijacked by the Nazis searching for the man who will build the atom bomb.
Mulder tries to convince the crew that they have traveled into the future but evidence further suggests that it is he, who is back in the past.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Triangle

    8.0
    Triangle was a great episode of The X-Files and I liked watching because the story was pretty good, the characters were awesome and the ending reminded me a little of The Wizard of Oz when Dorthy returns home and every one was in her dream. It was interesting to watch Mulder and Scully operating in two different times. I liked how every thing played out but this wasn't one of my favorite episodes and definitely didn't grab my attention or enthusiasm. I look forward to watching what happens next!!!!!moreless
  • Mulder enters the Bermuda Triangle and fights against Nazi's

    9.0
    Season 6, according to my friend, found the X-Files doing a lot more experimental stuff with their stories and the way they filmed episodes, and I can certainly see what he means by the last three episodes. The first three episodes have been great episodes overall, but there was just something incredibly fun and ridiculous about this episode, the same type of fun that episodes like "Small Potatoes" and "Bad Blood" gave us.. while I don't think that they're as good as those, "Triangle" gives us one of the show's finest hours and sort of gives us a Mulder/Scully kiss... but not really.



    In fact, my only real problem with the episode is that we never exactly figure out how Mulder goes missing and then enters back into our world. The episode doesn't seem too intent on focusing on the logistics or science of the episode.. instead, it's all about style, as Chris Carter lets the camera stretch on for what feels like ten or fifteen minute long takes (even though they're likely split and expertly edited). I think that, despite how clever Carter was with Mulder and the 1939 plot, I liked Scully's attempts to try and figure out how to help Mulder. The use of C.S.M here wasn't even conspiracy related.. instead, he seemed to exist just to make it even funnier watching Scully get more and more frustrated as she tries to help Mulder.



    In fact, I'd be hard-pressed, despite how unbelievably dark some of the moments of the episode are, to call this a straight-up comedy. Scully kissing Skinner in happiness for helping her, Mulder kissing the old Scully in 1939 and then getting punched, and the awkward "I love you" he says to the real Scully at the end that just gets an exasperated sarcastic head nod.. it was just a funny episode that found a way to use every single supporting character the show has used in the last five or six years.



    Season 6 is definitely off to a great start. I look forward to seeing where else they go from here.moreless
  • "I LOVE YOU" & some where over the rainbow! ;)

    10
    Okay first i have to establish the one thing i dont like about this episode first.... Mulder says scully...i love you which would be GREAT if not for the fact that it was only 2 or 3 episodes ago when he was drooling all over Diana Fowley and choosing to believe her (who we all know is bad)over Scully.



    That said I absolutly loved this episode!! I loved the characters being recast as Nazi's and OCC agents. I loved the kiss between Old Scully and Mulder and REALLY loved the punch afterwards. I loved all the Wizard of oz shout outs and the running shots down the halls. I nearly peed myself i was laughing so hard when Scully yelled at Spender and then again when she kissed skinner. Yet at the same time it wasnt just comedy to me. You could really tell that she was freeking out about mulder which was so cute and made every thing funny that much funnier because she was in a tizzy. I really liked the side by side shots of the different times running thru the halls. And when the two scully's passed each other and switched screens I thought that was great and supprising on the directors part.



    Over all this is ONE of my fav. episodes if not my fav. I differed from classic X files but after all that myth arc stuff i was wanting something alittle different and lighter. something where i could laugh at the tv instead of yell at it. SO big thumbs UP!!!moreless
  • He loves her - but we knew that already!

    10
    Whoa - I just saw this episode for the very first time and I was completely blown away. Best. Episode. Ever. Great action, great humor, cleverly plotted and filmed. I absolutely adored Scully, running around the FBI office, trying desperately to find someone to give her the information she needed. It was nervewracking and very funny.

    Also we finally get a much needed kiss between Mulder and... well, the 'alternate reality Scully' I guess you could call her - but it's a kiss nevertheless!

    Finally, he gets to declare his love for her. Not that I was surprised. I mean, we have known that for the past 5 seasons, haven't we? Still, it was so unbelievably sweet and her reaction so funny and in character I think I woke my neighbors squealing. And he looked as if he really meant it. Really!

    Oh my, this is one episode to rewatch a couple of times!!!moreless
  • I don't care what you do or who you do or who you have to grease, I need that information and I need it now.

    9.8
    Mulder goes into the Bermuda Triangle searching for Queen Anne, a British luxury liner which disappeared during WWII and reappeared in the present time in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and finds himself trapped on the ship in 1939 with many familiar faces.



    Triangle is not the typical X-Files episode but it's a great surprise proving that the series in its sixth season is still brilliant and original.

    Technically this episode is very impressive. I loved Chris Carter's idea to use four very long, continuous shot – one-offs – and the cinematography and the acting are once again amazing. The story is great as well, very funny and full of action and romance. Scully running around the FBI trying to find some help for Mulder is simply hilarious and the moment when Scully and her 1939 self, with the help of spilt-screens, cross paths is brilliant. Triangle is one of the most entertaining episodes of the series and one of my favourites.moreless
Wolfgang Gerhard

Wolfgang Gerhard

1st Nazi

Guest Star

Guido Föhrweißer

Guido Föhrweißer

2nd Nazi

Guest Star

Laura Leigh Hughes

Laura Leigh Hughes

Kersh's Assistant

Guest Star

Arlene Pileggi

Arlene Pileggi

Skinner's Assistant

Recurring Role

William B. Davis

William B. Davis

Cigarette Smoking Man

Recurring Role

Chris Owens

Chris Owens

Special Agent Jeffrey Spender

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (4)

    • Goof - Possible Anachronism: When Mulder is brought aboard the Queen Anne, the British crewmen claim never to have heard of the FBI. This is possible, as the Bureau of Investigation (BOI), founded in 1908, did not change its name to FBI until 1935. However, movies of the late '30s often ignored the earlier name when portraying the events of the Prohibition era. Worldwide distribution of US movies, already prolific by this time, should have familiarized non-Americans with the term.

    • Scully's 1939 persona calls Mulder "Einstein", even though she knows who Einstein was, it is unlikely she would use that name as an insult, because very few people in 1939 would have heard of him.

      Note: Einstein achieved fame in 1919, when observations of a solar eclipse by Arthur Eddington appeared to verify general relativity by proving that the sun's gravity bent light. Press all over the world made him a household name overnight. Ironically, Eddington's experiment was proved to be faulty (in 1962), but Einstein's ideas had, by that time, been verified by other observations.

    • Towards the end of the sequence with Scully in the beginning, where she is trying to find information on where Mulder is, she runs out of Fowley and Spender's office and goes around the corner toward the elevator, here she slips and almost falls. It's quite obvious, you can hear her slip and also see Gillian Anderson's arm shoot out to catch herself. She's quite lucky that she didn't fall because if she had, since they filmed the entire episode in real time, they would have had to start back at the very beginning of that scene and do it all over again.

    • The alternate version of Scully is identified as an OSS agent, but the OSS was not established until 1942. It was disbanded in September of 1945, and eventually became the CIA in 1946.

  • QUOTES (18)

    • Mulder: (The Nazi Commander Cigarette Smoking Man said a sentence to Mulder and Past Scully in German.) What did he say? (The Nazis push Mulder and Scully into execution position.) I think I know what he said.

    • Skinner: You're out of line, Scully.
      Scully: No, sir - you're out of line.

    • Mulder: I don't speak Nazi!

    • Mulder: In case we never meet again. (Kisses Scully's past-life)
      (Scully's past life looks at Mulder, then slaps him in the face)

    • Spender: You okay, Agent Scully?
      Scully: No, I'm not. I'm a gun ready to go off so don't test me, Spender. Don't even think about trying to weasel me.
      Spender: What is it that you need?
      Scully: Navy AWACS SLAR 100 K swath. South-southeast of Bermuda. I am looking for a boat, maybe a ship. 1939 luxury liner.
      Spender: 1939?
      Scully: Don't ask too many questions. I don't care what you do or who you do or who you have to grease, I need that information and I need it now. Are we clear on that?
      Spender: Crystal.
      Scully: And, Agent Spender,If you're not back in a hurry I am going to hunt you down, and so help me God... (she clenches her hand in a fist)

    • Scully: Mulder, will you settle down? It's an order.
      Skinner: Not that he takes orders...
      (Mulder rests the back of his hand against Scully's waist which is against his bed rail)
      Mulder: You saved the world, Scully.
      Scully: Yeah... You're right. I did.
      Frohike: What kind of drugs is he on?
      Langly: I want some.
      Mulder: I would've never seen you again. But you believed me.
      Scully: In your dreams...

    • Mulder: The war's over! Let them take you to Germany! They make nice cars.

    • Mulder: Scully?
      Scully: Yes?
      Mulder: I love you
      Scully: Oh brother....

    • Skinner: Get some rest Mulder, because when you get out of here I'm going to kick your butt but good.

    • Scully: (to Skinner) Save your own ass sir. You'll save your head along with it.

    • Scully: (to Spender) I want you to do me a favor. It's non-negotiable. If I don't get it, I'll shoot you.

    • Jamaican Stoker: Don't you know they're are spies everywhere? Trust no one, man.

    • Scully: (about Spender) That rat bastard.

    • Skinner: (as Nazi, after saving Mulder again) God bless America, now get your ass out of here.

    • Sailor #2: So, we win?
      Mulder: Yeah, you come out on the side of history with no small amount of help from us. Not much to apologize over the next 50 years except for maybe the Spice Girls.

    • Byers: It's dangerous to talk here.
      Frohike: The walls have ears.
      Scully: I have ears! Will you tell me what's going on?

    • Mulder: You're all big men now but wait until you get into Russia. Hope you fellas like the cold.

    • Mulder: You can relax. There's no war going on. The world is at peace. There's a little trouble over at our White House but that'll blow over, so to speak.

  • NOTES (11)

    • Taking advantage of the recent move to Los Angeles, many of the ship scenes were filmed on the Queen Mary, a luxury liner built in the 1930s that was (and still is) a tourist attraction in Long Beach Harbor.

    • This is one of Gillian Anderson's favorite episodes.

    • Every time Scully gets in and out of the elevator, there is a cleverly disguised cut because the elevator is actually stationary. However, in the scene where Scully isn't getting reception on her cellphone, every time the elevator rises to a new floor, the crew had to very very quickly switch the set, the extras, the props, and everything. According to Chris Carter, this led to funny shots where sometimes the doors would open too early and reveal crew members scurrying about with pictures in their hands and such.

    • Chris Carter was inspired by an MTV video of the band Semisonic for the split-screen shot of character walking through the split screen (where past Scully and present Scully cross paths).

    • Although this episode is well-known for being a series of four one-offs, Chris Carter says in the episode's commentary track that there are actually 34+ cuts used in the episode, hidden in pans or darkness.

    • This episode was aired in letterbox format, the same height-to-width ratio used for big-screen motion pictures, to get more action into each frame.

    • Many of the costumes used in this episode were ex-Titanic costumes from the Fox wardrobe department.

    • The first four acts of this episode are each comprised of one very long, continuous shot (called a one-off) and the fifth is split between two series of one-offs, employing a split-screen. Such long one-offs are very difficult, considering an entire set must be constructed, all the lines must be said correctly, and the camera movements must be continuous (and usually handheld). Some cuts are hidden in whip-pans and when the screen goes dark. These are some of the best, and longest one offs on television - from one commercial break to the next. Chris Carter intended this as an homage to the Hitchcock thriller Rope, which used a similar technique.

    • This episode we see the first of 4 on-screen kisses between Mulder & Scully, although it is Scully's past life.

    • A strange tagline change this time: 'Die Wahrheit Ist Irgendwo Da Draußen', German for 'The Truth Is Somewhere Out There'.

    • The use of split-screens and real-time shots from the 1939 Queen Anne to the 1998 Queen Anne is a masterstroke in this episode, especially the scene where Scully and her 1939 counterpart cross each others paths at the same point.

  • ALLUSIONS (5)

    • Film Reference: Schindler's List
      The scene in which - when asked who the scientist on board the ship is - Mulder points to an already dead man on the ground, is a reference to a scene in the film Schindler's List. In this scene, a young Jewish boy tells the Nazi officers that a man who was just shot stole the chicken they were interrogating them about, thus saving more people from being shot. However, unlike the boy, Mulder is unsuccessful in his attempt to trick the Nazis.

    • Yet another obvious reference to The Wizard of Oz is in the hospital room at the end, when the three Lone Gunmen arrive. In the film, the three friends who became the Cowardly Lion, the Tin Man and the Scarecrow come to see her in bed, after her 'dream'. I'm not sure which Gunman would be which, but it's a clever allusion.

    • Another obvious reference to The Wizard of Oz also takes place in the hospital room when Scully says to Mulder: "Mulder, I want you to close your eyes and I want you to think to yourself 'there's no place like home'."

    • Film References: The Wizard of Oz
      Much like "Post-Modern Prometheus" was a homage to Frankenstein, this episode was a homage to The Wizard of Oz, filmed in the style of Alfred Hitchcock's 1948 film Rope; with the story taking place in real-time and being shot in continuous takes with no cutaway shots. The Wizard of Oz references include:

      - The story loosely follows that of The Wizard of Oz, with Mulder in a sort-of alternate reality, running into people who look amazingly like the important people in his life.

      - Mulder's wrecked boat was named the "Lady Garland". Judy Garland was the actress who played Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz.

      - The first ballroom scene includes a band named "Elmira Gulch and the Lollipop Guild". Elmira Gulch was the non-Oz name of the Wicked Witch of the West (the mean old woman who wanted to take Toto), and the Lollipop Guild was the ruling body of the Munchkins.

      - The events Mulder witnesses on the Queen Anne are taking place in 1939. The movie version of The Wizard of Oz was released in 1939.

      - Captain Yip Harburg was so-named for The Wizard of Oz lyricist, Yip Harburg.

      - Of course the most obvious reference is in the hospital when Mulder is telling Scully and Skinner that they were there, Skinner replies "Right, me and my dog Toto."

      - An obscure reference (probably not for those who speak German) is in the altered tagline, which translates into "The Truth is Somewhere Out There", possibly a homage to the song "Somewhere Over The Rainbow".

    • Mulder: It's 1998, the world is at peace. There's a little trouble at our White House but that'll blow over, so to speak.
      LOL. This is one of the funniest references to the Monica Lewinsky scandal that I have ever heard!

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