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Fox Mulder: "Did you really think you could call up the Devil and ask him to behave?"
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Well here it is! More gore. We are projected for the first time in the series in the satanic ritual murder, in the tone that this theme deserves, and in the atmosphere that this episode focuses. The first scene between Mulder and Scully in the forest suggests the best: the gullible / skeptical opposition. Scully does not even have time to say that there is nothing strange in this forest that it's raining toads. Ridiculed, his role - throughout the episode - remains no less important.
The victim (Jerry Steven) is one of the two boys who - in fact - wanted one thing: indulge in libertinage with the two girls; the ceremony being only an excuse to reunite our two very innocent girls. At the first interrogation, I must confess my jubilation when to find Mulder face adolescents. A theme that will be the breadcrumb of several other episodes (DPO, Schizogeny, Rush and so on.) And another pleasure: that of finding Scully at the controls; it is she who asks the questions, and in a serious that we have pleasure to watch because it accentuates the unparalleled realism in this season. She reads in her eyes that, despite her unbelief, she does not disregard the violence of the crime and the fear of Dave Duran; nor the disgust of our two young girls. On the other side of the window of the room where the young people are questioned, stands the group of teachers that we had seen in pre-generic scene. According to them, Jerry Steven was killed according to Asrael's ritual. Thus begin the suspicions, each lowering the eyes not to be suspected ... Continuing in the enumeration of the great appointments, or - as I said in other reviews - great ingredients of the quality "X files". It's good - about paranoia here at its height. The collective hysteria of which Scully speaks, another great theme. An evil force holding the city in its clutches ... But who is behind all this?
In the following scene, the plausibility of a teacher's interest in young teens, Mrs. Paddock's empathy and female connivance towards girls is as likely to be kind as in the next minute, this same Mrs. Paddock naturally puts copies on the heart and the bloody eyes of Jerry Steven. A horrible scene from a perspective of the realistic context that I keep talking about. Then the cult scene of the dissection of the pig ...
More personally, every time I see poor Shanon's story, I can not help but feel sorry for myself, even thinking that everything is not true. This is one of the most serious episodes, and I would say even more dramatic ones. As a loner, he has the power to captivate us as much as certain mythos; it's rare. Every scene of Mrs. Paddock's ritual murder is a real horror. The way it's filmed, the perfectly fair game of each actor ... Everything is there to make this story oppressive. We will also remember the replica of Scully, very rare at this stage of the series: "Even I would almost believe it".
Finally, from a practice level point of view, the proficiency level of the teacher group, including Jim Ausburry, is only a small beer compared to Paddock. What a horrible face!
But where does Mrs. Paddock come from? Who invoked it? Since no teacher remembers the day of his arrival? We know that his arrival coincides with a very rare disease that would have contracted the teacher she replaces ... Funny coincidence! The episode fought over the growing suspicion around Mrs. Paddock, which is why, in order to protect herself, she "sacrifices" each person posing a threat. The final scene is based on the same question as at the beginning, in that it disappears as strangely as it appeared. But why did you save Mulder and Scully? Obviously for the obvious reason that the series could continue, but if not what interest did it have to that?
I think it appeared then following the invocation of Dave, in the pre-generic scene.
Which explains on the one hand that nobody remembers its arrival, and on the other hand that it is the bad incarnate, on the side of which our group of teacher appear of beginners ... One will note the attention to the detail of Morgan and Wong in the way of blowing out the candles. Indeed, in black magic you do not blow a candle without putting your hand in front, it brings bad luck. It can even translate as an insult to Satan. Thus, to properly extinguish the laziness, one blows a blow with a hand behind the flame.
The striking characters:
From the first time I was seized by Shanon. So by the game of Heather McComb. Here is one who knows how to cry! His story is appalling but still awaits me with compassion. He yes I'm as mean and sentimental as the society that gave me birth ...
Otherwise Jim Ausbury, his father. For the cellar scene. Very creepy recess.
Then simply our usual tandem. Scully very professional, Mulder always suspicious and fair, with its eternal paranoia: the interrogation with the psychologist ...
Sacred loner still that The hand of hell. And the evocative title turns out to be almost below the reality of the episode. This is one of the most horrific episodes of the season, with the other two guessing ... For being septic at first, I get to appreciate it better today.