‘The X-Files’ Season 11 Debut Recap ‘My Struggle III’: Find Him

In the recap for ‘The X-Files’ season 11 debut, Scully reveals an apocalyptic vision as she tries to convince Mulder that they have to find their son…

By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer

‘The X-Files’ is back for season 11 in what might just be the last 10 episodes of the long running series.

Gillian Anderson has said that season 11 would be her last ride as Agent Dana Scully and ‘X-Files’ creator Chris Carter has stated that he can’t imagine doing a show without her. That means this 10 episode run might be the last that we ever get of ‘The X-Files’ and the show is off to a running start so far.

Following a cliffhanger that ended season 10 last year, ‘The X-Files’ picks up with a big twist to start season 11, unmaking a great deal of what unfolded at the end of the previous set of episodes.

Still, the set up for what could happen now in potentially the final season of ‘The X-Files’ is rather intriguing, especially considering the way that Carter continues to unravel past plots and make new creative choices for the series that won’t necessarily be applauded by some long time fans of the show.

For Carter, the key is making the show he always envisioned and there’s something commendable about a creator sticking to what he wanted for the show no matter how many people might complain about his choices.

One of those was the big twist at the end of the debut episode for season 11 so with that said, let’s recap the latest ‘The X-Files’ titled ‘My Struggle III’….

Apocalypse Now

At the end of last season of ‘The X-Files’, Scully was rushing to find her son William in hopes that his stem cells could be used to save Mulder from a deadly alien virus called ‘the Spartan virus’ that was being unleashed upon the world in a planned Armageddon. Scully was immune thanks to her own DNA being spliced with an alien when she was impregnated with William but she was on a mission to save Mulder when an alien ship arrived over a bridge and a light came shining down on them just before the series faded to black.

As the latest episode of ‘The X-Files’ picks up with Scully laying on the office floor with blood coming from her face as Mulder rushes her to the hospital. When Scully finally awakens, she reveals that the apocalyptic scene from the season 10 finale was actually just a vision in her own head. It was a premonition of sorts and Scully believes that all of the events that were unfolding will actually take place including the alien virus being unleashed to wipe out the majority of the human population — Mulder being among them.

The doctor at the hospital remarks how Scully’s brain is on fire with so much activity and Assistant FBI Director William Skinner remarks how the patterns on her MRI are reading like Morse code. In fact, Skinner decodes the message to read “find him”, which he believes refers to Mulder and Scully’s son William.

As much as Scully wants to convince Mulder that her vision of the future is true, he’s more concerned about her well being. Still, Scully continues ranting about the visions including the fact that the Cigarette Smoking Man is still very much alive and pulling the strings behind this planned apocalypse and he’s currently staying in South Carolina.

Mulder is skeptical at best, especially after watching his father die in an explosion years ago, but still he promises to look into everything to try and figure out what’s happening to Scully.

Meanwhile, Jeffrey Spender reappears for the first time since the original series finale — along with a new face — and he’s run down by a car in his apartment complex before narrowly making his escape. The assailant trapped outside a locked door shouts at Jeffrey to tell him where William is at and this will all be over. Spender doesn’t tell him anything but instead calls his half-brother Mulder to share this information with him instead.

When Mulder gets the message, the Cigarette Smoking Man is monitoring the call, which leads to him making a hasty exit while his son jumps in his car to search for answers.

Alien Autopsy

The episode actually begins with a run through history courtesy of the Cigarette Smoking Man, who actually reveals his real identity after all this time — his name is Carl Gerhardt Bush.

A past episode from ‘The X-Files’ featured a similar Forrest Gump like travel through history featuring the Cigarette Smoking Man but this one ends with a younger version directing a choreographed moon landing, proving that Neil Armstrong never actually landed anywhere except a sound stage in Hollywood.

During the speech, the Cigarette Smoking Man also confirms that both Mulder and Jeffrey Spender are his sons, although judging by what he’s done to each of them, he’s not exactly going for Father of the Year any time soon.

This all leads to the Cigarette Smoking Man explaining his plans to Monica Reyes, who remains by his side for some unexplainable reason, but two very important things are revealed here. First, the Cigarette Smoking Man admits that he could never hurt Scully but Mulder is going to get in the way of his plans and has to die. Second, the Cigarette Smoking Man is desperate to find William as well while admitting that the boy is his weak spot. More on that later.

With the intercepted call from Spender to Mulder, the Cigarette Smoking Man packs up his belongings and hits the road with Reyes as to avoid an encounter with his son, who will more than likely arrive at any moment.

As for Mulder, he leaves the hospital after getting the voicemail from Spender but along the way he notices that he’s being trailed by another car. He find a way to lose his tail in a car crash but the person chasing after him quickly shakes off the accident and gets back on his trail. Unfortunately the person hunting for Mulder can’t find him because he’s actually tailing the bad guy now.

Mulder follows the goon through three states overnight until they finally arrive in South Carolina — the exact site where Scully claimed the Cigarette Smoking Man was alive and well.

When Mulder finally makes his way inside the mansion where the man he’s been following stopped, he encounters a surprise. Rather than finding the Cigarette Smoking Man, Mulder instead runs into somebody known as ‘Mr. Y’ along with his associate Erika Price.

Mr. Y proceeds to tell Mulder that the Cigarette Smoking Man is very much alive and was at this residence not that long ago but he made his escape. He then tells Mulder that he was part of the Syndicate — the shadowy group of powerful men tasked with the planned apocalypse of the world thanks to the alien invaders about to take over the planet.

At the same time this conversation is happening, the Cigarette Smoking Man reappears in Washington D.C. where he takes Skinner hostage along with Monica Reyes where he makes a proposal to the assistant director for the FBI.

The Cigarette Smoking Man and Mr. Y offered varied versions of the same story that led to this planned apocalypse. Cigarette Smoking Man sticks to his story that the aliens arrived and releasing this deadly virus is the way to wipe out the majority of humanity with only a few survivors left in the aftermath when our new overlords arrive to rule the planet. Mr. Y says that the Syndicate was tasked with saving humanity until the Cigarette Smoking Man flipped on them after the aliens arrived.

According to Mr. Y, the aliens showed up but had no real interest in taking over the planet because we’ve already tapped most of the natural resources and there’s really not much left for them to conquer. But the Cigarette Smoking Man still managed to harvest the deadly virus from the alien in an effort to carry out his plot of Armageddon.

Mr. Y then tells Mulder that they have a different agenda — they want him to kill the Cigarette Smoking Man and while the virus may still be released, they plan on launching space colonization and he will be given a spot so long as he carries out their orders.

As for the Cigarette Smoking Man, he offers Skinner a vaccine to the alien virus so long as he agrees to help them find William. Skinner seems disgusted to even be in the same vicinity as the Cigarette Smoking Man yet he’s not getting out of the car just yet. What he finds out next changes everything.

I Am Your Father

Back at the hospital, Scully wakes up from another hazy dream state with all sorts of visions dancing through her head but this time she’s greeted by Jeffrey Spender, who has come to warn her that someone is looking for William. It seems Jeffrey was tasked with placing William into an adopted home where he would be far away from his parents and thus out of danger.

Scully begs him to tell her where William is at but he will only reveal one thing — the name of the people who adopted him — Van De Camp.

Spender makes a quick exit and Scully isn’t far behind as she insists on leaving the hospital to go search for her son. Unfortunately, Scully’s trip is cut short after she begins experiencing visions again in the car and she ends up in a crash. Thankfully, agents Miller and Einstein happened to be nearby and they saw the crash before bringing Scully back to the hospital.

She’s not any safer there, however, as the goon who originally led Mulder back to that mansion in South Carolina has returned and he’s been tasked with killing Scully. The man almost succeeds but Mulder shows up just in time to slit his throat and keep Scully alive.

Mulder then confirms much of what Scully saw in her visions was true including the Cigarette Smoking Man being alive and his planned Armageddon with the Spartan virus. They both still have questions about this would be assassin but Scully assures Mulder that the Cigarette Smoking Man wasn’t responsible for sending him here. She knows that he would never hurt her but Scully is convinced that he’s also hunting for William.

That leads Scully to reveal that she believes William is the one sending her these apocalyptic visions in an attempt to warn his parents about what’s coming for them.

Back in Skinner’s car, the Cigarette Smoking Man then unveils the second part of his story about why he’s so interested in William and would never lay a hand on Scully.

The story stretches back to ‘The X-Files’ season 7 when the Cigarette Smoking Man abducted Scully and drugged her under the guise that he would offer her the cure for cancer. It’s here where the Cigarette Smoking Man reveals to Skinner that it was during that trip that he impregnated Scully with the alien-science that he had concocted in an effort to create the first person with super human abilities.

In his mind, the Cigarette Smoking Man is William’s father just like he’s father to both Mulder and Spender as well. The shocking revelation shakes Skinner, who is never seen giving his answer to the Cigarette Smoking Man about his deal but it certainly seems like he accepted the offer.

Back at the hospital, Mulder is infuriated that Skinner didn’t do more to protect Scully and after smelling smoke on him, he believes that his long time boss is now in coordination with the Cigarette Smoking Man on his conspiracy to wipe out humanity.

Still while they are waiting to find William, Scully tells her partner that there’s nothing more they can do but to continue to work the X-Files while continuing to look for clues that will stop this orchestrated Armageddon. In other words, ‘The X-Files’ will largely go back to business as usual for the next six or seven episodes until the story involving William, the Cigarette Smoking Man and the Syndicate wraps up towards the end of the season.

‘The X-Files’ returns with a brand new episode next Wednesday night at 8pm ET on FOX.

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  1. 'The X-Files' Season 11 Debut Recap 'My Struggle III': Find Him