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How The Ghosts Stole Christmas 6X08
Air date: December 13th, 1998
Written by: Chris Carter
Directed by: Chris Carter


Title Meaning: A play on the popular Christmas tale, "How The Grinch Stole Christmas"
Tag Line: The Truth Is Out There

Other Information:
• As a reference to the production company, 1013, Mulder is listening to 101.3 on his radio
• The address of the haunted house, 1501 Larkspur Lane, may be a reference to the Nancy Drew mystery novel "Password to Larkspur Lane"
Ed Asner (Ed)
Lily Tomlin (Lily)

6X08On the night before Christmas, Mulder convinces Scully to put aside her gift wrapping and stake out a reputed haunted house. But they discover a married couple living in the house, keeping a secret the agents never expected.

It's late Christmas Eve. Telling tales of star-crossed lovers who forged a pact to be together for eternity, Mulder lures Scully into the darkened mansion that the ghost couple purportedly haunts. Once inside, the front door locks behind the duo and traps them inside. Mulder believes it is the work of the ghosts who inhabit the house. Scully, ever the skeptic, instructs Mulder on the psychology of peoples' need to believe in the afterlife as a means to satisfy their fear of mortality. But when a previously locked door springs open and a light shines from inside the room beyond, Mulder chalks it up to ghosts. Scully, admitting that she is afraid but that it's an irrational fear, still sticks with the belief that people might be actually living in the house.

Passing through the door, the partners find themselves in a library. And in a series of odd twists and turns, they become separated -each trapped in some parallel universe version of the library. It is here that Mulder meets Maurice The Ghost , who convinces Mulder to shoot Scully. In her own parallel library, Scully meets Lyda The Ghost , who convinces Scully to shoot Mulder. When the two agents meet back up, they follow through on the ghosts' mischievous plan and fire their weapons on each other. As they lay gasping on the staircase landing, they realize it was only some kind of mind trick played on them by the ghosts.

Safely ensconced back in their homes, the duo agree that the events of the evening never happened.

Rating: 6 out of 10
I'm not really sure what I think of this episode (like many of the episodes this season). If this had aired as maybe a one-off during the middle of a season, I would have given it a much higher score. The thing is though that almost all the episodes this season have been trying new, wacky ideas and have had lots of funny moments with not a scary moment in sight. I just can't understand why the season has been like this so far. Maybe it was because Chris Carter saw how much we all loved episodes like Small Potatoes and Bad Blood and said, "Why don't we do one of those every week?". Well, I've got to tell you Chris that the reason those episodes worked was because they were one-offs, detracting from the dark and scary stories of the rest of the season just to keep us all happy. If that's true, I'm so happy now I could burst!! I want to be UN-happy for god sake and if I don't get a good, scary X-Files tale soon, it's going to be me who's gonna be taking hostages!!

Anyway, the episode! What we've got is an above-average trek through a haunted house with some classic, inspired moments and good dialogue between the characters. Chris is directing like an old pro now and much like Triangle, throws in some great special effects and camera tricks in to make it even more fun. That hole in the head was especially good. I suppose you do have to be a long-time X-Files fan to fully appreciate the interaction between the agents, and their lengthy chats with the two ghosts (portrayed brilliantly by the two guest stars) who mistakenly think they are lovers - yet another moment for the shippers. Still, this episode lacks just one thing - realism. That has been the one thing lacking from most episodes this season. If you look at the first few seasons, the one thing that made them so intriguing was the realism of all the cases and unfortunately, this just isn't. I've been waiting for a good, scary ghost story for a long time, but it looks like I'll have to wait even longer when hopefully Chris has realised that The X-Files doesn't have to be witty, funny and surrealistic to be a great show.
Nitpicking