Recap / The X-Files S01 E07 "Ghost in the Machine"

When the CEO of a technology company is found dead, suspicion turns to the founder of the company, whom the CEO was trying to force out. However, the true killer may be a little harder to put in handcuffs...

Tropes:

  • AI Is A Crap Shoot: Played Straight. The Big Bad in this episode is the AI.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: Scully tries to make her way through one to beat the technology, and is very nearly killed in the process.
  • Artistic License Linguistics: Scully analyzes a COS-generated synthesized recording of Wilczek's voice against another reading of the same line she creates by splicing together various clips of Wilczek's real voice. Somehow the two clips have identical spectrographs. Needless to say, that wouldn't happen and the analysis wouldn't work.
  • Artistic License Physics: When the elevator plummets, Larry is pinned to the floor rather than experiencing freefall.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Number 1: Electrocution while trying to unlock a door (with a metal key). Number 2: Crushed in a falling elevator. Not good.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Brad Wilczek. He even made Mulder and Scully take off their shoes while they were in his residence.
    Wilczek: [in a cell sitting barefoot on a bed] They make me wear shoes all the time. What else do you want from me?
  • The End... Or Is It?
  • Evil Elevator: An elevator that is part of an office building's sentient computer network. It kills an investigator.
  • Haunted Technology: Not quite. It's got a mind of its own, that's all.
  • Hollywood Hacking: Some of the terms used to describe "expert" hackers sound like they were pulled out of thin air.
    Mulder: Could someone have hacked into the system?
    Wilczek: Well, not your average phone freak, that's for sure. But there's plenty of kooks out there. Data travelers, Electro wizards, techno anarchists. Anything's possible.
  • I Just Want to Be You: Jerry explains that some of his Jerk Ass tendencies have to do with his jealousy of Mulder's superior skills as a proiler and agent.
  • I Thought It Meant: No real relation with the album Ghost in the Machine.
  • It's Personal: Once the AI kills Mulder's former partner.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Jerry Lamana steals Mulder's brilliant profile of the killer, and passes it off as his own. A few scenes later, he meets with his death in a falling elevator.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Brad Wilczek is most definitely NOT Steve Jobs. Ahem.
    • Not even Steve Wozniak. No siree.
  • Not Quite Dead: Looks like the AI might have survived the virus after all!
  • One Head Taller: Agents' height difference is especially noticeable in the scene where Brad Wilczek asks them to remove their shoes and there are a few shots without the aid of anything to make up for it (no box, no high heels). Gillian Anderson looks positively tiny; she barely comes up to David Duchovny's shoulder.
  • Stock Episode Titles: 21 uses.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Mulder and his former partner, Jerry Lamana.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Recap/TheXFilesS01E07GhostInTheMachine