The X-FilesTV ReviewsThe X-Files Season 11 Episode 5: Ghouli Review

Keith NoakesJanuary 31, 2018

If you would like to read my review of the last episode, click here.

Synopsis: When a pair of teenage girls attack one another, each believing the other to be a monster, Mulder and Scully find that their investigation could possibly lead back to their long-lost son, William. (IMDB)

Writer: James Wong

Director: James Wong

Rating: TV-14

Running Time: 45mins

So we’ve hit the season’s halfway point. We’re still in standalone territory here, however, this episode still managed to take this idea and make it into a satisfying sort of mythology episode, similar to what “This” did. The premise that led to this perhaps wasn’t the strongest but the end more than made up for it.

The episode started once again with Scully’s psychic link with who we believe to be her son William. She was haunted by a shadowy figure who appeared to be leading her to something. Little did she and Mulder know, it would lead to their next case. Again, the premise was a pair of girls attacked each other, thinking that the other was a monster. This part of the story wasn’t important whatsoever in terms of the episode but rather what was important came afterwards.

Mulder and Scully were being followed so that’s definitely a good start. They learned that the person responsible may have been another boy who was the boyfriend of both girls, Jackson Van De Kamp (Miles Robbins) who was found murdered along with his parents. Thinking that she was led there for a reason, Scully began to believe that Jackson may be William. She even got emotional in what was a outstanding performance by Gillian Anderson as Scully apologized for not being there for William without knowing for sure if it was him.

Luckily, things changed drastically once Jackson got out of his body bag and left the morgue. Scully was still adamant that William wanted them to find him. She also ran into a strange man (François Chau) who just happened to appear at the Van De Kamp crime scene. After returning to Jackson’s room, Mulder and Scully stumbled onto a classified DOD project called Project Crossroads. Skinner caught wind of this and so did CSM which is another good sign. Skinner told Mulder that Project Crossroads was a failed project where scientists attempted to combine human and alien DNA to create hybrids. The DOD was on the case to track down former test subjects which included Jackson. Mulder also confirmed that Jackson was William through a DNA test that Scully had run prior.

Scully and Jackson’s psychic link was pretty much confirmed when she told his psychiatrist about the same vision he had shared with her about the end of the world from last season’s finale. The crime scene at Jackson’s house made it look like he killed his parents but Mulder believed that they were killed by the agents who were looking for him. A chase ensued at the hospital between Jackson, Mulder and Scully, and the DOD agents. Jackson ultimately had them kill each other, similar to earlier with the girls, before escaping as a nurse.

Stopping at a gas station, the man, who may or may not have been Project Crossroads leader Dr. Matsumoto, approached Scully one more time. He seemed familiar and recited a quote that was in Jackson’s room. When they looked at the surveillance video, they saw Jackson. Makes you wonder if it was really Matsumoto the whole time?

Overall, this was another good episode that shifted from a monster of the week story to a sort of mythology episode that focused on the relationship between Scully and William. The original premise may not have been the strongest but the emotional arc afterwards than made up for it. Gillian Anderson’s performance was definitely the best part of the episode. Also, Jackson/William didn’t know who he had the psychic link with so it will be interesting to see what happens when they’ll inevitably meet again.

Score: 8.5/10

If you liked this, please read my other reviews here and don’t forget to follow me on Twitter, follow me on Instagram, and also like me on Facebook.


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