Little Green Men
written by Morgan and Wong
Summary by Rebecca Rusnak
Internal dating: Mulder's adventure is triggered by a signal received from the Aricebo observatory on July 5th 1994
Opening sequence: We see and hear various images and sounds from the Voyager spacecraft, while Mulder does a voice-over:
"We wanted to believe.
"We wanted to call out. On Aug. 20 and Sept. 5, 1977, two spacecraft were launched from the Kennedy Space Flight Center, Florida. They were called Voyager. Each one contains a message. A gold-plated record depicting images, music and sounds of our planet, arranged so that it may be understood if ever intercepted by a technologically mature extraterrestrial civilization.
"Thirteen years after its launch, Voyager I passed the orbital plane of Neptune and essentially left our solar system. Within that time, there were no further messages sent. Nor are any planned.
"We wanted to listen. On Oct. 12, 1992, NASA initiated the high-resolution microwave survey--a decade-long search by radio telescopes scanning 10 million frequencies for any transmission by extraterrestrial intelligence.
"Less than one year later, first-term Nevada Senator Richard Bryan successfully championied an amendment that terminated the project.
"I wanted to believe, but the tools had been taken away. The X-Files had been shut down. They closed our eyes. Our voices have been silenced. Our ears now deaf to the realms of extreme possibilities."
The camera zeroes in on computers in an abandoned control room, in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. A printer begins spewing paper, tape begins rolling as the Voyager message begins playing..
Credits roll: The Truth Is Out There
Mulder has been assigned to a dreary wiretapping assignment and spends his days in a tiny room. Scully is teaching forensic pathology to bored students at Quantico. Both are bored and restless.
Scully sees Mulder one afternoon in the hallway at FBI Headquarters and speaks to him, but he does not respond. Mulder gets to his desk to find his framed photograph of Samantha turned over and a post-it note stuck to it: Scully's signal to meet.
That night Mulder meets Scully in the parking garage of the Watergate Hotel. He asks Scully what information she has for him. She says she has none, she only wanted to meet to see if he was all right. Mulder says its dangerous for them to chat, that they must assume they are being watched. Scully insists that the X-Files are closed, and why would anybody care, anyway? Mulder expresses frustration at his new job, and seems to be on the edge of depression. Scullys says, "When the Bureau first shut us down, you said you would go on, for as long as the truth was out there. But I no longer feel that from you."
Mulder tells Scully about a telescope at the Palomar Observatory, built by a man named George Ellery Hale. Hale got the idea for the telescope one night from an elf that climbed in his window. Scully says, "And you think you've been seeing elves all your life?" Mulder replies, "In my case, little green men." Scully tells Mulder that he still believes in Samantha, and Mulder says that he is beginning to doubt that ever really happened. Scully tells him not to give up, and leaves Mulder, who stares at the Watergate sign.
Segue into Mulder's dream. He and Samantha are watching Watergate hearings, playing Stratego. Samantha asks, "Do we have to watch this, Fox?" Young Fox replies, "Leave it. I'm watching The Magician at nine." Samantha replies, "Mom and Dad said I could watch the movie, buttmunch." Fox says, "They're next door at the Galbreds and left me in charge." Fox and his sister argue over the TV, and then the lights go out. The house begins shaking and blue and red lights pulse through the windows. Samantha calls out, "Fox!" He has gone for his father's gun, and turns around when she screams. The last thing he sees of her is her suspended body, floating out the window.
Mulder awakes from his dream to find a man in his doorway. The man takes him to the Capitol, where Mulder meets Senator Matheson, the man who has quietly championed Mulder and the X-Files. Mulder begins to apologize for letting the senator down, but the congressman interrupts. He tells Mulder that contact has been made at an abandoned SETI project in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. He gives Mulder a computer printout of the transmission the Arecibo project received. Mulder will have 24 hours, but after that the Senator will not be able to hold off the Blue Beret UFO Retrieval Team.
Skinner plays tape for Cancerman, on which Scully claims not to know where Mulder is. CSM does not believe this, but says, "She'll find him."
Scully, searching for Mulder, goes to his apartment. She guesses his computer password-- Trustno1 and prints out a copy of the computer printout Matheson gave him. When a surveillance team arrives, Scully manages to sneak out with the printout.
In Arecibo, Mulder has broken into the control room, and is dictating notes into a tape recorder. When he goes into the bathroom, he finds a terrified Hispanic man. The man, Jorge, cannot speak English, and Mulder knows only rudimentary Spanish. The man says something about "lights in the sky--red, blue, and orange." When he mentions men, he grabs a marker from Mulder and draws a figure on the wall. It is the head of an alien, with the pointy head and almond-shaped eyes.
Scully takes the printout to a man at the US Naval Observatory. He tells her about the "Wow!" signal, which is another transmission received back in the 1960's. The man who received it was so excited he wrote "Wow!" in the margins. The man says that up until now that was the best proof of extraterrestrial life, but the paper Scully has is even better. When she asks where it could have come from, he tells her about several SETI projects.
Scully goes through airline passenger manifests, and comes across the name George E. Hale on a flight to San Juan, Puerto Rico. She dodges two people shadowing her at the airport, and gets aboard a flight to San Juan.
In Arecibo, Mulder is attempting to decipher the computer printouts when the tape player suddenly turns itself on. Jorge is terrified, and when Mulder turns around to shut off the tape player, Jorge runs out into the surrounding forest. Mulder goes out in search of him and finds the man's body, dead, his arms stretched out as if in supplication.
Mulder attempts to record the forensic evidence of Jorge's body into his tape recorder, but becomes depressed and addresses his comments directly to Scully. He says that it is hard trusting no one and suspecting everyone. "You even begin to doubt what you know is the truth. Before, I could only trust myself. Now I can only trust you. They've taken you away from me. My life up until this point has been about the need to see her again. To see them. But what would I do if they really came?"
At this point, the lights go out, and the building begins to shake. The tape reel begins to record, and an unearthly noise is heard. Mulder cries, "No!" and barricades the door. The building stops shaking, but then a bright light floods the room and the door bursts open. Cowering in a corner, Mulder attempts to fire his gun, but is met with only a dry click. He hangs his head, helpless, then manages to look up, and sees a tall, impossibly thin form in the doorway.
Scully arrives in Arecibo, and finds Mulder unconscious. He wakes up and is agitated, stalking around the room, claiming that "they" were here, and that they must gather up the evidence. While Scully watches him worriedly, the Blue Beret team arrives. She manages to get Mulder to leave, but not before he grabs the spool of tape. They jump into Scully's rented truck, and flee the soldiers, barely escaping with their lives.
Back in Washington, Skinner soundly chews out Mulder in front of the Cigarette Smoking Man, threatening probation, and even suspension. When Mulder tries to defend himself, mentioning that his phone was tapped, Skinner angrily orders the CSM out of his office. After he has left, Skinner tells Mulder to continue his wiretap surveillance, then throws a meaningful glance at the still smoldering cigarette in his ashtray.
Finally, Mulder tries to play the tape he has taken from Arecibo for Scully, but it is blank. He is angry, but tells Scully that at least he still has his work, he has her, and he has himself. She leaves him to his wiretap, but instead of playing the surveillance tape, Mulder rewinds the Arecibo tape, and leans in close, hoping this time to hear something.