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Recap / The X-Files S03 E22 "Quagmire"

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The agents finally get around to tracking a purported Stock Ness Monster. Scully almost gets eaten. Giggity.


  • Adventure Towns: It takes place in Heuvelmans Lake, Blue Ridge Mountains, GA.
  • Finish Dialogue in Unison: Mulder talks about Ahab and his wish to have a peg leg, and shares his favourite line, which they finish in unison.
    Scully: And that's not flippant?
    Mulder: No, flippant is my favourite line from Moby Dick. Hell is an idea...
    Mulder and Scully both: ...first born on an undigested apple dumpling.
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  • Half the Man He Used to Be: One victim is found in the lake with everything missing from waist up.
  • Infant Immortality: Averted with Queequeg. Scully's Pomeranian was eaten by the monster. In fact, it was an alligator. Probably.
  • Inspirationally Disadvantaged: Invoked by Mulder, who claims to have always wanted a peg leg on the grounds that if he were disabled, just getting through everyday life would be enough of a heroic accomplishment that he wouldn't feel compelled to spend his life obsessively questing for the Truth.
  • Killed Off for Real: Scully's pomeranian, Queequeg.
  • Mister Muffykins: Mulder is not pleased that Scully brought her small dog Queequeg.
  • Moby Schtick: The biggest Shout-Out to Moby-Dick that appeared on the show. When Scully's dog Queequeg (named after the harpoonist) dies, Scully talks about the book as her favourite since she was little, and she reminiscences about her father reading to her from it. She compares Mulder's self-destructive obsession with his quest to Ahab's white whale. Mulder and Scully even share a favourite quote, which they recite in unison: Hell is an idea first born on an undigested apple dumpling.
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  • Monster of the Week: A Stock Ness Monster, mixed with proper Americana.
  • Mundanger: The thing responsible for the killings is not Big Blue the sea monster, but an alligator. Or was it?
  • Not So Remote: Scully and Mulder have been exploring the lake at night, and their boat crashes and sinks. They spend quite a long time on a rock, and Mulder even quips about cannibalism. They are saved by Dr. Farraday later that night.
    Scully: We would have been out here all night if you hadn't answered our distress call.
    Farraday: Oh, I didn't. I was walking by, I heard you talking.
    Scully: Walking by?
    Farraday: Yeah, the shore is just a stone's throw from here.
  • Not the Nessie: Mulder went after this case to prove that a lake serpent was responsible for the numerous deaths. He's disappointed to find out a dangerous alligator.
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  • Real After All: Mulder is leaving, disappointed that it was Not the Nessie, but an alligator. They miss seeing Big Blue, resurfacing on the lake.
  • Shout-Out: Heuvelmans Lake is named after Bernard Heuvelmans, the so-called "Father of Cryptozoology".
  • Stock Ness Monster: Mulder and Scully investigate reports of a lake serpent and find a surprisingly ordinary, albeit still deadly, alligator. This being The X-Files, however, after they've left, the ending shows there really is a serpent in the lake.
  • The Stoner: The two survivors of the trio of stoners from "War of the Coprophages" turn up again, looking for new highs.
  • Toad Licking:
    Dude: Saw this, you know on the Discovery Channel. They got like this, you know, cult built up around these toads. The skin's got these, hallucinogenic properties. Lets you see all these visions. It's really spiritual. It's supposed to take the doors of perception, and swing them so wide open, you know, plus you get to see all these cool streaks and trails and crap. [licks the toad]


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