January 31, 2016

The X-Files 2.12, Aubrey: The Man of Her Dreams

Posted in TV tagged , at 2:17 pm by Jenn

Not a good look for you, John Locke

Not a good look for you, John Locke

Summary: In Aubrey, Missouri, a police officer named B.J. Morrow wants to talk to another officer, Brian Tillman, but he’s too busy for the conversation. Finally, Morrow writes him a note while he’s on the phone, telling him she’s pregnant. Tillman gives her the address of a motel and tells her to meet him there that night so they can talk. When Morrow arrives, she sees a bright light and has a flash of a man burying a body by the side of a road. She digs up the body and finds an FBI badge.

In D.C., Mulder and Scully check out dental records to determine that the body belonged to an FBI agent named Sam Chaney. He and his partner, Ledbetter, disappeared in Aubrey in 1942 while they were investigating a serial killer. Basically, Chaney and Ledbetter were the 1940s Mulder and Scully. Mulder can’t figure out why Morrow was suddenly compelled to drive to a field and dig up a body that had been missing for 50 years. Scully guesses that they’re on their way to Aubrey to find out. Mulder makes the requisite joke about how Morrow’s name is B.J.

Let’s go to Missouri! Mulder and Scully meet with Morrow, who claims that she was in the field at night because her car broke down. Tillman, standing nearby, eavesdrops. Morrow’s story is that she saw a dog digging in the field and went to the motel to use the phone once she saw the body. Tillman cuts in, noting that Mulder and Scully should be more focused on the body than how Morrow came across it. Mulder asks Morrow if she’s ever had any psychic experiences. Tillman has no patience for this and pulls Morrow away.

Scully does her thing at the coroner’s office while Mulder reads Chaney’s journal. He and Ledbetter were investigating a murderer called the Slash Killer who killed women. He hit them over the head, then carved “sister” in their chests and used their blood to paint on the walls. Scully sees that Chaney was clearly hit over the head as well, and that his ribs were cut, possibly with the kind of razor that the killer used to slash his victims.

Mulder hears from a mechanic who reports that Morrow’s car was fine. Scully’s already figured out that Morrow and Tillman are having an affair, and were planning to meet up at the motel. She matches scans of Chaney’s skeleton with those from one of the Slash Killer’s victims to determine whether they were killed by the same person. Morrow comes by, and when she sees Chaney’s skull, she has a flash of his murder. It disturbs her enough to make her run off.

Scully finds Morrow in the bathroom and reveals that she knows about Morrow’s affair with Tillman. She’s also guessed that Morrow is pregnant. Morrow thinks her nightmares are a side effect of the pregnancy; she keeps dreaming about a man in a house, and a lot of blood. She hasn’t decided yet what to do about the baby, but she knows Tillman would be mad if she told anyone. Scully goes back to Mulder and tells him what’s going on.

Mulder finishes the scans and determines that Chaney may have had “sister” carved into him. Looking at the bones, Morrow thinks “brother” is more likely. Tillman arrives and wonders how the group got access to the photos from a recent crime scene. He’s confused them with the ones from Chaney’s death, since they look so similar. He reveals that three days ago, a woman was killed in the same style as the Slash Killer’s victims. Just then, an officer arrives and announces that another victim has been found. Morrow immediately recognizes her as a woman she’s dreamed about.

The agents chat with Morrow in a park, talking about how her maternal instinct is emerging. Her father was a cop, and Morrow always wanted to be one, too. She knows her father would find it ridiculous that she wants to use her dreams to solve a crime. But it’s all they have to go on, so here they are. Morrow describes the dream for the agents; there’s a man with a rash on his face, and a picture of a monument with something circular by it. Mulder thinks it looks like the trylon from the 1939 World’s Fair.

Back at the police station, Morrow looks at some mug shots from the ’40s. Tillman tells her he’ll go with her “for the appointment,” but Morrow isn’t sure that’s what she wants anymore. Tillman’s adamant that they make the decision together. Morrow recognizes the man from her dreams in a mug shot and rushes off. The agents head to Nebraska to see the man, Harry Cokely, who was convicted of rape decades before. He carved “sister” into his victim’s chest.

Scully doesn’t think Cokely’s still killing, since he’s so old. She wonders if Morrow’s just remembering things her cop father talked about when she was a child. The recent killings might have triggered something in her memory and led to a big hunch. Mulder laughs that off, though Scully reminds him that he’s had some extreme hunches of his own. He denies it, but we have video evidence, so nyah.

Cokely is old and uses an oxygen tank, but Scully interrogates him anyway. He claims not to remember attacking and slashing Linda Thibedeaux in 1945. “I’m sure Mrs. Thibedeaux will never forget it,” Scully replies. Cokely claims that he’s recovered from whatever condition led him to attack Linda, and he was nowhere near Aubrey when the most recent victims were killed. He can’t leave the house without his oxygen, so he’s in no condition to kill anyone. Scully decides to end the interrogation. Cokley doesn’t help things by calling her “little sister.”

Morrow dozes at home, dreaming about a 1940s car and a hand holding a razor. When she wakes up, she sees that she’s covered in blood. “Sister” has been carved into her chest. She sees the reflection of a younger version of Cokely in a window, then flashes on someone burying something beneath floorboards. She heads to the location in her dream and starts pulling up floorboards. Someone calls the police, and when Tillman and the agents arrive, she says, “He’s here.” While Tillman takes Morrow to the hospital, Mulder finishes unearthing what she was digging up: bones.

The agents meet up with Morrow at the hospital, and she tells them Cokely hurt her while she was asleep. Mulder’s confused since she says she recognized him from his mug shot. Scully humors her, saying she’ll tell Tillman to question Cokely. Tillman does so, but Cokely insists that he didn’t hurt anyone. However, blood tests show that Cokely’s DNA matches what was found under the most recent murder victim’s fingernails.

Mulder decides that they need to talk to Linda next. She remembers the way the light reflected off the ivory handle of Cokely’s razor. “Someone has to take the blame, little sister, and it isn’t going to be me,” he told her. His defense at his trial was that his father was abusive and punished him for everything that went wrong, since he was the only boy out of six children. Mulder notices a picture of Linda and her husband at the 1939 World’s Fair, right in front of the trylon. Linda says she thinks Cokely was born evil.

Mulder asks if Linda had children. She says no, but Mulder knows that she was admitted to the hospital nine months after her attack. Linda reveals that she had Cokely’s child and placed him for adoption. The agents head back to their motel, having learned that the bones Morrow dug up belonged to Ledbetter. They were under a house Cokely rented in 1942. They were buried with a straight razor, so Scully thinks they have enough to nail Cokely.

Mulder isn’t sure – Morrow saw a younger man in her house. Maybe she was attacked by Cokely’s grandson. After all, he could look just like his grandfather. “I don’t think Mendel had serial killers in mind when he developed his theory of genetics,” Scully remarks. Mulder says he had nightmares as a child and would wake up thinking he was the only person left in the world. Then he would hear his father chewing on sunflower seeds in his study. What if Mulder likes the seeds because he’s genetically predisposed to? What if other traits are passed down through DNA?

Scully points out that things like tastes have to be developed. Mulder says people have genetic memories, which have been studied in twins separated at birth. For example, separated twins may have children with the same names without even knowing it. The conversation takes a new turn when Scully learns that someone tracked down Linda’s son. He was a police officer named Raymond Morrow – B.J.’s father. That makes Morrow Cokely’s granddaughter.

Mulder thinks Morrow has genetically inherited her grandfather’s homicidal tendencies, and she’s committing the new murders. Scully asks him to explain why Morrow herself was slashed. Mulder says it doesn’t matter – they need to make sure Morrow doesn’t go after Linda. This is exactly what happens, as Morrow goes to Linda’s house and starts to attack her grandmother with an iron. Fortunately, Linda slows her down by splashing her with bleach.

Linda also has a gun, which she aims at Morrow as Morrow starts to channel her evil grandfather. Linda quickly recognizes Cokely’s eyes in Morrow. Morrow sees the picture from the World’s Fair and briefly stops advancing on Linda. Linda sees that they both have “sister” on their chests; Cokley has attacked both of them. Linda tells Morrow that she doesn’t know what she’s doing, and Cokely’s the one to blame. Morrow raises a straight razor to finish her off.

The agents reach the house, where Linda tells them that something stopped Morrow from killing her. Scully thinks Morrow’s looking for someone to blame for her pregnancy, which means she’ll go after Tillman next. Mulder disagrees – she’s figured out that Cokely’s her grandfather, and she must blame him for everything. He tries to call Cokely but doesn’t get an answer. As he heads to Cokely’s house, Scully takes Linda to the police station, where Tillman argues that Morrow couldn’t have attacked her. Linda shuts him down.

At Cokely’s, the old man discovers that his oxygen tube has been cut, and someone’s in the house. As Mulder arrives, Cokely comes face to face with Morrow. She slashes the razor through the air, calling him “brother.” She tells him he knows the rules: “This doesn’t stop till you’re dead.” When Mulder enters the house, he finds Cokely in bad shape, and Morrow waiting for him, mistaking him for a young Cokely. She puts the razor to his neck, saying that this time he’ll stay dead.

Scully and Tillman arrive in time to stop Morrow, who says she’s not B.J. In the corner, Cokely dies, and Morrow pulls the razor away from Mulder’s neck. Scully’s end-of-episode report tells us that genetic testing has so far been inconclusive. Morrow’s fine now, and they’re trying to find out if the pregnancy triggered her “transformation.” They don’t know yet what the effects might be on her unborn child. Morrow’s locked up, on suicide watch because she keeps trying to kill the baby. Cheery!

Thoughts: In case you couldn’t tell from the picture, Tillman is played by Terry O’Quinn. He’ll be back two more times in the series.

“I’ve had feelings for people I’ve worked with. Interoffice relationships can be complicated.” Oh, just wait, Scully.

Linda still lives in the house where Cokely raped and impregnated her. Holy cow.

Also, did we really need two rape episodes in a row? And I know the next one isn’t much better.

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