August 23, 2015
The X-Files 1.11, Eve: Experimenting With Eugenics? What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Summary: It’s a quiet morning in Greenwich, Connecticut, and a little girl is standing in a driveway, clutching a stuffed animal. A couple jogging by stops and asks the girl, Teena, where her father is. She tells them that he needed time alone. The jogging husband finds Teena’s father, Joel, sitting on a swing. He’s dead, with two puncture marks on the side of his neck.
In D.C., Scully tells Mulder that Joel died of massive blood loss – he lost four liters. Mulder quips that he was “running on empty.” Scully’s like, “Ha ha ha, his eight-year-old daughter was there, you jerk.” There’s no evidence at the scene. Mulder starts talking about some mutilated cows with the same punctures and blood loss, with no blood found at the scene. Scully notes that those mutilations have been connected to alien abductions. Mulder thinks Teena was abducted when her father was being killed.
The two travel to Greenwich, where Teena’s being kept at a social services hostel until a foster family can be found for her (her mother is also dead). Scully starts the questioning, treating the situation as if it were a human-on-human crime. Mulder takes over, asking about strange sounds. Teena reports seeing red lightning before everything went dark. “The men from the clouds – they were after my dad,” she says. “They wanted to exsanguinate him.”
Scully gets a call and tells Mulder that there was another death. The agents head to Marin County, California, where Doug Reardon was found dead at the exact same time and in the exact same circumstances as Joel. He also had digitalis in his system. Doug’s daughter Cindy was at the house at the time but doesn’t remember anything. Mulder’s sure that Cindy, like Teena, will remember seeing red lightning.
That night, Teena lies away during a thunderstorm. She moves a chair in front of the door and locks the window just before someone tries to get into her room. She hides under the bed, only getting out when she thinks she’s safe. Moments later, there’s a flash of light. A social worker hears Teena scream and runs to her room, but the girl is gone.
Mulder and Scully discuss her disappearance, which Mulder, of course, thinks is an alien abduction. They go to meet Cindy, who looks exactly like Teena. Her mother, Ellen, denies that Cindy was adopted, and was the only child born at the time. Scully shows her a picture of Teena and Joel, telling her that Joel died at the same time Doug did, in the same way. Ellen says that she conceived Cindy through in-vitro fertilization.
Scully tells Mulder that it’s completely possible that two people could look exactly alike. Mulder thinks it’s less likely that the two people would have fathers who died through exsanguination at the same time. Since Teena disappeared, Mulder thinks Cindy will, too, so he wants to keep an eye on the Reardons’ house.
Meanwhile, Scully goes to the Luther Stapes Center to find out more about in-vitro fertilization. The doctor she talks to, Katz, denies any possibility that a patient could receive an embryo from someone other than herself. Scully looks through files and discovers that Teena’s mother also underwent in-vitro fertilization at the Luther Stapes Center, under the supervision of Dr. Sally Kendrick.
Katz isn’t a fan of Kendrick’s, reporting that she was fired for dabbling in eugenics experiments. However, when he requested an investigation, he was denied. Kendrick has since disappeared. Scully takes the information to Mulder, who wonders if Kendrick is trying to erase any evidence that she was experimenting. Scully thinks she’s working with someone else to get revenge on the Luther Stapes Center.
The phone rings, but Scully only hears clicks on the line. Mulder kicks her out, saying he wants to watch a movie. He really goes to meet Deep Throat, who wants to discuss the Litchfield Experiments. In the ’50s, Russians were experimenting with eugenics, trying to create a “superior soldier.” A compound in Litchfield housed a bunch of genetically superior children. The boys were called Adam and the girls were called Eve.
Deep Throat gets the agents access to an institution for the criminally insane, where they meet Eve 6. They recognize her, since she looks just like Dr. Kendrick. She tells them that the Adams and Eves were prone to suicide, so most of them are dead. Eve 7 and Eve 8 escaped. Eve 6 says she’s not Kendrick, but “she is me and I am her, and we are all together.” The Litchfield experimenters test her to see what went wrong, but Eve 6 knows that Kendrick knows exactly what that is.
The clones have heightened skills, like strength and intelligence, but along with them comes heightened psychosis. On her walls are pictures of a dozen Eves, who all look like Cindy and Teena. Mulder summarizes the case: Kendrick used the Luther Stapes Center to continue the Litchfield experiments, cloning herself.
Cindy goes to bed as the agents stake out her house. Mulder and Scully decide that Kendrick is using one of the clones as an accomplice to get the Eves away from their adoptive parents. Cindy spies on them through her bedroom window as Scully wonders if the Eves know what they are. A light shines from Cindy’s closet, and Scully sees someone come out and grab Cindy. The agents circle the house, and someone knocks Scully out.
Mulder catches one of the escaped Eves leaving the house with Cindy, but she’s armed, so he has to give her a head start. Scully calls the police and sends out a team to search for Kendrick and Cindy. Mulder assures Ellen that Kendrick most likely wants to keep Cindy alive. Kendrick takes Cindy to a motel, where Teena is happy to meet her lookalike. In the morning, someone at the motel calls to report guests fitting Kendrick and Cindy’s descriptions.
Kendrick tells the girls her work at the Luther Stapes Center; the psychosis didn’t develop in the clones until they were in their 20s. The girls say they “just knew” about each other, and how to orchestrate their fathers’ deaths. They deny that they were born – “we were created.” Kendrick tells them they need to think of themselves as humans, no matter how special they are. The man who raised her was able to give her treatments to make her normal.
Kendrick starts to shake, and the girls smile evilly. They gave Kendrick a lethal dose of digitalis. “You made us,” they remind her – she should be able to figure out why they did it. The agents arrive at the motel and find Kendrick dead. The girls say that Kendrick and a woman who looked just like her tried to get them all to poison themselves. Mulder thinks they’re dealing with Eve 8 now.
The agents ask to keep the girls with them, wondering how they’ll cope when Teena returns to foster care. After driving for a while, the girls ask to stop to use the bathroom. The agents take them to a café, where Mulder orders sodas (diets for the adults, regulars for the girls). One of the girls sneaks out of the restroom, takes two of the sodas, and puts digitalis in them. Mulder asks her to take a sip to make sure it’s diet, but the girl declines.
The group heads back to the car, but Mulder can’t find his keys. When he goes back in to get them, he finds traces of a green substance on the counter. As soon as he realizes what it is, he races back outside and makes Scully spill her drink. He quietly tells her that the girls poisoned their drinks (though they didn’t drink enough to get the effects).
The girls disappear, so the agents search for them through rows of semi trucks. Their superior intellect isn’t enough to keep them from being found by a seasoned FBI agent. However, the fact that the girls look like…well, girls makes a couple suspicious that they’re being kidnapped. The girls are able to run off again. They hide in a boat while the agents leave, thinking they escaped with a bus full of kids. This time, though, Mulder fools them and captures them.
Mulder and Scully tell Ellen what happened, letting her know that she has the right to find out more. Ellen says that Cindy was never really her daughter. She tears up a family picture and burns it. The Eves are taken to Eve 6’s institution, where they receive a visitor: Eve 8. How did they know Eve 8 would come for them? They “just knew.”
Thoughts: Want to feel old? The twins who played Teena and Cindy are now 31. They’re older than Gillian Anderson was when this episode was filmed.
Probably everyone knows this, but ’90s one-hit-wonder band Eve 6 named themselves after this episode.
Isn’t Mulder’s mother also named Teena, spelled the same way? What’s the show’s interest in that name with that unusual spelling?
It looks like Mulder just keeps a handful of sunflower seeds in his jacket pocket. I feel bad for his dry cleaner.