Follow TV Tropes


Recap / The X-Files S04 E09 "Terma"

Go To

Index | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24
Season 4, Episode 09:

"E pur si muove" Translation 
Written by Frank Spotnitz & Chris Carter
Directed by Rob Bowman

Mulder: You don’t tell me where that other bomb is and I’ll make sure you spend your prison time on your bigoted hands and knees putting a big smile on some convict’s face.
Mayhew: Sonofabitch stole it- truck and all. Some storage garage.
Mulder: Where?
Mayhew: Terma... North Dakota.

Mulder attempts to escape from a Russian gulag where the prisoners are being subjected to experiments with the black oil.


  • Affably Evil: Peskow, a hitman brought out of retirement. He takes Scully at gunpoint near the end, but is happy to disarm her and leave without further violence.
    Peskow: I would just as soon kill, but please don't make me. My work is done.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Krycek loses his hand in this and is shown wearing a prosthetic one at the end.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Peskow easily completes all his objectives, assassinations and cover ups and makes it back to his apartment in Russia in time for tea.
  • Badass Normal: Peskow. This guy could have probably given Mr X and even the Alien Bounty Hunter a run for their money. Or Jason Bourne, Jack Bauer, Sam Fisher and Solid Snake for that matter.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Mulder's return, complete with a dramatic entrance, heroic music and hushed whispers from onlookers.
  • Book Ends: At the beginning of the episode, Peskow is making a cup of tea in his St. Petersburg apartment. When he returns at the end, Krycek is waiting for him, also making tea with his new prosthetic arm.
  • Couch Gag: Unusual for the show is that for this episode, the opening card that normally reads "The Truth is Out There" now says "E pur si muove".
  • Character Filibuster: Mulder before the sub-committee. The committee members do not seem too moved and it's rather short anyway, but he gets uplifting background music nevertheless.
    Mulder: Why is this so hard to believe? When the accepted discovery of life off this planet is on the front page of every newspaper around the world? When even the most conservative scientists and science journals are calling for the exploration of Mars and Jupiter? With every reason to believe that life and the persistence of it is thriving outside our own terrestrial sphere? If you cannot get past this, then I suggest this whole committee be held in contempt, for ignoring evidence that cannot be refuted.
    Senator Sorenson: This is not why we are here today.
  • Evil Old Folks: Peskow is a retired, ruthlessly effective hitman well into his twilight years. Downplayed in that he'd really rather have stayed in retirement, and prefers to use diplomacy to deal with enemies he isn't required to kill.
  • Great Escape: Mulder manages to escape the gulag by brandishing a shiv given to him by another prisoner and stealing a vehicle.
  • Jerk With A Heart Of Jerk: You might think being wanted by both the FBI and The Conspiracy (wanted dead by the latter) would cause Krycek to be a bit more humble and a bit less sinister in his ambitions; you'd be quite wrong.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Peskow.
  • Make the Bear Angry Again: Invoked in a chat between the Smoking Man and Well-Manicured Man.
    CSM: If you wake the Russian bear, he'll find that someone has stolen his honey.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Krycek is the one who turns out to have hired Peskow. Less surprisingly, the episode ends with the Smoking Man visiting Senator Sorenson.
  • May–December Romance: Implied. The CSM bluntly asserts that the Well-Manicured Man was sleeping with his considerably younger physician, who the latter defends as a trusted member of The Conspiracy. He's also clearly outraged by her murder.
  • Myth Arc
  • Retired Badass: Peskow, who succeeds almost effortlessly in everything he tries to do.
  • Smug Snake: CSM towards the Well-Manicured Man.