The other pages in the Places section aim to describe real places. However, the places we see in the X-Files are often rather different from their real life counterparts. As it is X-Files fanfiction we're writing, after all, this section describes some of the places we see within the show.
The basement office
Click here for a picture of the office set. This is, of course, only relevant up to the end of season five, though the office, as of half way through season six, begins to look like this again.
I will not even attempt to describe this in words. It appears in about half the episodes, and everyone is familiar with the rough feel of the place. More than that is difficult. The overwhelming impression is one of clutter. There are book cases, filing cabinets etc everywhere, and usually in a different place each week. As we hear in "Never Again", Scully does not have a desk in this office. Interestingly, in "Milagro", she even calls it "your office", when talking to Mulder.
Very briefly, the room is rectangular. The door (which only has Mulder's name on it. Even as late as Piper Maru, Scully knocks on the door and waits to be asked in before entering) is near the end of one of the long sides. Coming in, most of the room is on your right. Mulder's desk is straight ahead, near the left hand wall. Above it are little sky lights, letting in some daylight (seen in Colony). There is a glass partitition about half way down the room on the right. The area behind that partition is seldom seen, but the opening scenes of Aubrey take place here.
There are posters everywhere. The most obvious one is the now famous UFO in a pale blue sky, with "I want to believe" written on it. There is also a coat rack that sometimes has Max Fenig's NICAP cap on it.
After the fire at the end of season five, it is redecorated. Under Spender and Fowley's ownership, it is very bare, with no posters, and large pot plant by the door. When Mulder and Scully get it back, it begins to look more like it used to do. Mulder only gets the "I want to believe" poster back at the end of the episode Alpha, two thirds of the way through season six.
Opinion is divided on this. She does have an office at Quantico, during the period in which the X-Files are shut down. It can been seen at the end of "Duane Barry", amongst others. Whether she keeps this office while the X-Files are open is unclear.
There are a lot of doors in Skinner's office, and lots of wooden panels pretending to be doors. The walls are grey, though there are so many oak coloured panels that the main impression is of wood. The floor is grey and hard, but there is a rather nice red Persian rug under the conference table. The furniture is mostly magahony, the chairs are black leather and the door handles are round metal knobs. There are a lot of lamps.
Skinner's wooden desk is near a window, so Skinner can sit with his back to the light. There is a bronze bulldog in his desk. His window is covered with white slatted blinds. From Skinner's point of view, sitting in his comfy black chair at the desk, most visitors come in through the door on his right, coming via his personal assistant, Kimberley. This is the door Mulder and Scully usually use. Sometimes it opens into the office, other times it opens out of it, and the door handle is fond of changing sides.
There is also a door on the left that Cancerman tends to use. In "Paper Clip" we see that this leads to a small passageway. A pair of double doors is straight ahead of Skinner's desk. These are used by Mulder and Scully in "Tooms" and once in "Colony."
Again looking from Skinner's perspective, there is a nice mahogany long table in the right hand far corner of the room. (To Mulder and Scully, coming in, this is to their right as they enter the room. See Anasazi, where Scully comes in to the office then turns right to walk over to the table). This is where nasty committees sit and interrogate Mulder, Scully, Jeremiah Smith etc. This is presumably what he sees as his conference area.
In the left-hand far corner, there is a grouping of black leather armchairs around a low table. This is presumably the place for less formal discussions, but the only person ever seen here is Cancerman.
On the wall there is a picture of Janet Reno (on the wall next to the door Mulder and Scully come in by, though it changes from episode to episode) and a picture of Bill Clinton (next to the window behind Skinner's desk.) There are two flags in the room - the US flag nearest the window, and the blue FBI flag near the door Cancerman uses.
Vistors come in through Kimberley's office. This is also rectangular, full of black shelves and filing cabinets. It is clearly seen in Anasazi and Blessing Way. Entering from the corridor, visitors must walk the full length of the room to get to the door to Skinner's office. The assistant's desk is near Skinner's door. There is an outside window near the desk, and internal windows opening onto the corridor at the other end.
Skinner was memorably attacked in the corridor outside the office in Anasazi.
Other departments and offices
These will only be described briefly. Episode references will be given for anyone who wants to see what a particular room looks like.
Mulder lives in Apartment 42, 2630 Hegal Place Alexandria, VA 23242 ("Small Potatoes")
Click here for a floor plan of Mulder's apartment, provided by Richard Preece. (Bear in mind, though, that the X-Files interiors are sets, and not always the same from one episode to the next.) [Editor's note: There must have been a bathroom somewhere, and I'm sure building codes would require a window in the bedroom. We'll try to get a better diagram.]
There is a good view of the outside of his apartment complex in "The Erlenmeyer Flask&," when Scully meets Deep Throat outside Mulder's front door. It is a red brick building with white window frames, and in "Anasazi" (as Mulder waits for Krycek at the back of the building) it is revealed to be three storeys. In EBE we see the blue light in Mulder's window, showing there is at least a storey above him and a storey below him, putting him on the middle of the three floors. There is a rather handsome conifer on either side of the path from the street, and a strip of grass around the front of the building. There are about half a dozen steps up to the porch, with ornate wrought iron rails on either side. The porch is white, with pillars and a nice portico, and there is a panel of bell pushes on the right. This shows exactly 42 bells, although the apartment opposite Mulder's is apartment 43, and, strangely, Mulder's is fairly near the top left of the panel. His neighbours (or, at least, the names on the bells above and below his), are "Slaniceanu" (above his name), "Pao/Hu" and "Dohmann" (below him).
In "Anasazi", when Mulder fights with Krycek we get a view of the back of the apartment complex. In "Milagro", we see that there is one of those nice huge incinerators in the basement, useful for disposing of bodies.
But why is that Mulder and Scully always pull in right in front of the door, and never ever have to go half way along the street to get a parking place?
The corridor between the elevator and his room in shown in lots of episodes. End Game, when Scully chases X to the elevator, is one which springs to mind. A different part of his floor is shown in Anasazi, when he and the Lone Gunmen investigate the gun shot (although, puzzlingly, Mulder seems to turn right three times, suggesting corridors on all four sides of a square, which would mean all the inside rooms have no windows). The whole apartment complex seems to be decorated in cream coloured paint, with dark wood doors and a dark wood strip running around at about shoulder height. The letters on Mulder's front door look very much as if they've been taken off and put on again in a slightly different place (looking for bugs?), and in "One Breath" (when he talks to Melissa) the 2 has disppeared all together. By "Dreamland II" they must have been totally replaced, since they're in a different font.
There are many places to look for the inside of his apartment. End Game, Anasazi, EBE, Grotesque and Dreamland II are perhaps the best, as each of them contain several different scenes showing different angles. Briefly, the door opens into a hall area.The kitchen is off to the left, off this area. This area isn't usually shown much, although we do see briefly into this area in EBE, when he lets Scully in after finding the bug. There is a coat rack to the left of the door, and it has little billiard balls on each "arm". (Why?)
Straight ahead is the living room, which is small and cluttered. Click here for a picture (large) of the set for this room, and here for a smaller one .) The window is at the far end, with a desk (with computer) beneath it. A black leather couch is on the right, with a low wooden coffee table in front of it. The far right corner has a black shelf unit with a fish tank on the bottom shelf. In Paper Hearts this actually contains fish - two or three goldfish, or so I'm told. A reddy-brown leather arm chair is in the far left corner. There are piles of books on the floor, and pictures on the wall. The one opposite the couch says "Royal" and appears to have a type writer on it. He seems to have a lot of antiques, and there is a tall and ornate ornamental coat rack type thing to the left of the front door.
The very existence of the bedroom has been hotly debated, until resolved in "Dreamland II". In "Grotesque" there is a recessed door on the right of his living room, looking from the door. Sure enough, this turns out to be the bedroom. However, the people who said that Mulder didn't have a bedroom were right, too, since there is no bed in it, and no bedroom furniture. Mulder is seen sleeping all night on the couch several times (Tooms is just one example) and there is an alarm clock beside the couch, on a small round table to its left (End Game). The bedroom itself he uses as a storage room, filling it with soft porn magazines, fuzzy dice, and lots and lots of files (amongst other things).
However, Mulder is seen in bed in "Jose Chung's From Outer Space", though much debate has centred on whether this is really his bed, or just Chung's imagining. I have read that Chris Carter has said this is really Mulder's bed (though I'm afraid I don't have the source. Can anyone help?). Certainly the decor (cream walls, dark brown wooden strip) is the same as the rest of his apartment complex. However, if this was his real bedroom, he must have got rid of the bed and filled the room up with junk within the next year, when Eddie Van Blundht muttered "where do I sleep?" after surveying Mulder's apartment.
In "Dreamland II", though, the MIB inhabiting Mulder's body fits the bedroom out with new furniture and a canopied water bed with leopard-skin patterned sheets. At the end of the episode, all this is still there. What happened to Mulder's junk is not known, and nor is whether Mulder will actually keep this furniture. (No signs of any of Morris's additions in "How the Ghosts Stole Christmas", but we don't really see much of the apartment.)
The kitchen is glimpsed in EBE, Anasazi and Deep Throat, where it has rather old-fashioned looking kitchen units, and the walls are white brick. In "Dreamland II", the kitchen looks a bit different (maybe Mulder bought new kitchen equipment after some food went rotten and polluted his old stuff, or something.) The stove is straight ahead, and the refrigerator on the right, as you go in. The whole look is more modern than the old one. (Also, the kitchen's grown bigger, strangely). Judging from what we see of the corridor, his kitchen is in his next-door neighbour's house!
Mulder apparently has no bathroom. Perhaps this a wise decision, given how many people get attacked in bathrooms in the X-Files.
The number above Scully's apartment building is 1419 (Ascension, Colony) and she lives at apartment 35. This is not compatible with her address as given in the Official Guide. This gives her address as 3170 W 53 Rd, Annapolis, Maryland, which is taken from her smallpox vaccination cerificate (Paper Clip). This is presumably a previous address. In Milagro, we learn that she has, in fact, lived in Georgetown since at least 1993.
The screen caption says "DC" for her apartment in "Erlenmeyer Flask", and her license places are also DC ones (though she and Mulder to drive rental cars, or use FBI ones (as in Jersey Devil), so often, that it's not clear at all what her own car looks like), as is her area code on her phone number (202).
Should you want to stay in the building used for the exterior shots of Scully's apartment (called Pendell Suites!) here is the web page. It includes a few useful photos of the exterior.
The outside of her building is seen clearly in Colony, Ascension, Blessing Way and others. The door is painted between Ascension (when it was white) and Colony (when it is blue), but the number above the door remains the same, suggesting it is supposed to be the same building. There is a little colonade thing above the door, and seven steps up to the door from the road. The building is red brick, with white painted window frames. There is a grass verge between the road and the building.
Scully's apartment is on the ground floor, immediately to the right of the door. This is shown clearly in Ascension, when Mulder stands outside looking in through her broken window. However, when Skinner meets Scully outside her apartment in "Terma" it seems as if she has to walk down a long twisty corridor to get from the front door to her apartment, which doesn't quite fit.
Click here for a floor plan of Scully's apartment, provided by Richard Preece. (Bear in mind, though, that the X-Files interiors are sets, and not always the same from one episode to the next. See below for details on all the different bedroom locations.)
The whole apartment is large, airy and open-plan - about three times the size of Mulder's cramped apartment. The front door (which is white) opens straight onto the living room. Click here for a large picture of it, or here for a smal ler one ) The centre of this are several arm chairs and couches arranged sociably around the fireplace. Scully usually sits in the white and grey striped couch. All the chairs are covered in a cotton type fabric, and all are different colours. One arm chair is pink and white stripes. One is plain white. One is flowery. These are seen clearly in Young at Heart, when Mulder and Scully talk to Dr Ridley.
The room has outward curving bay windows. These are covered with white blinds, and also with curtains that are rusty brown and blue flowers on a white background. Her computer is on a desk in one of the windows.
There is a white fire place in the room, and a round glass coffee table. In War of the Coprophages she had a real fire going. The walls are white at first, but then get painted pale yellow half way through the second season.
Scully's kitchen is perhaps best seen in the Blessing Way. It has a large pine table in the middle, and wooden chairs. The kitchen units are white and modern.
The bathroom is seen very clearly in Squeeze. The walls are green up to about shoulder height, and white tiles above that. There is an antique bath on the left, a shower on the right, and a barred window straight ahead. The room is full of fluffy towels and candles.
Scully's bedroom changes quite a bit. Bedroom mark one (first season - seen best in Squeeze and Ghost in the Machine and others) is rather blue and cluttered. Above the bed in an odd blue semi-circular thing - almost like a blue shining window. Her duvet is blue and white, and she sleeps in a wooden double bed. As she is lying in the bed, she would be facing the door with the window on her right. Bedroom mark two (Anasazi) is very yellow and not at all cluttered. The layout is much the same as bedroom mark one, but the colour is different and the odd blue thing has gone. There is a bookcase to the right of the bed, and a desk under the window. Bedroom mark three (War of the Coprophages) is different yet again, as bedroom mark four (Tempus Fugit). And I mean different. Utterly different, even though the rest of the apartment is identical.
As for how the whole thing fits together, Squeeze gives us a fast tour of the whole apartment. Young at Heart gives us a slower but less complete one. Beyond the Sea shows Scully leading her parents from the kitchen to the front door, but sadly this seems to put the kitchen and the door in a totally different place from usual.
Good episodes for Scully's apartment are Squeeze, Ghost in the Machine, Beyond the Sea, Young at Heart, Ascension, Colony, Anasazi, Blessing Way, War of the Coprophages, Tempus Fugit and many others.
Bill Mulder's house
Bill Mulder lived at West Tisbury, Martha's Vineyard, in a house he bought after the divorce. The house is best seen in Colony and Anasazi. There is a lot of greenery outside, and a long path from the road. The path sweeps round, going up a lot of shallow steps, before getting to the house. The house is very white, with dark blue detailing. The whole of the front of the house is a raised verandah, with white railings topped with blue. Mulder and Samantha talk here in Colony, and it is here Bill Mulder has his meeting with Cancerman in Anasazi.
Inside, the house is large but rather bare. The walls are pale, and there are vast expanses of window without any curtain.
A year and a half after Bill's death, the house is still in the Mulders' possession, as Mulder goes there in "Paper Hearts." Everything is covered in plastic sheeting.
It is not known whether the Chilmark house is still owned by the Mulders. None of them live there, but then they seem to collect houses that no-one lives in. You could probably argue that they sold it because of the painful memories, but you could equally argue that they would keep it in case Samantha came back to it.
Mrs Scully's house
Seen in "Wetwired" and "Blessing Way," though unfortunately it is different each time. In "Wetwired" we get a close up on the front door, which is blue painted with an ornamental brass door knocker. Inside it is white and spacious. There are lots of white draperies everywhere, and brass chandeliers. The hallway is decorated in pale green up to half way, and white above that. There are pictures and family photos on the walls and surfaces. The living room has a mahogany table that is suspiciously similar to the one in Skinner's office.
However, in "Blessing Way," the house looks different. We don't see it clearly, but the door is brown wood, and the inside is plain white, without any of the green we see in"Wetwired."
I have often read in fanfic that Mrs Scully lives in Baltimore, but I can't find where this comes from in the episodes. Anyone?
In "Tunguska" we see the inside of the rather large apartment Skinner has just recently moved into (as he tells Cancerman.) This is different from the place he was just moving into in "Avatar," so the man has been moving around quite a lot. There in no sign of a wife in "Tunguska."
He lives in a very glassy tower in Crystal City, Virginia. This is called "Viva Tower" and the number 828 is next to the main entrance to the tower. His apartment is on the seventeenth floor, but consists of two floors.
Like so many X-Files interiors, the walls are white. The whole impression is very white, in fact. Coming in through the door, the stairs are on the left and the main body of the apartment is straight ahead. His furniture is dark wood - a desk, bookcases etc. He has a balcony, which is curved. The railings are white with blue highlights.