The review contains spoilers this week. There’s
no way the discussion won’t. If you haven’t
heard spoilers for this episode yet and you
haven’t seen it, the bottom line is 37 out of 42.
Now, go find someone who can loan you a copy
before you read about it on Slashdot.

Cast

Tom
Braidwood
as Melvyn Frohike
Dean
Haglund
as Ringo Langley
Bruce
Harwood
as John Fitzgerald Byers
Stephen
Snedden
as Jimmy Bond
Zuleikha
Robinson
as Yves Adele Harlowe / Lois Runtz
Mike
McKean
as Morris Fletcher
Jim
Fyfe
as Kimmy the Hacker
Robert
Patrick

as John Doggett
Annabeth
Gish
as
Agent Reyes
Gillian
Anderson
as Dana Scully
Mitch
Pileggi
as Walter Skinner

Crew

Written by Vince
Gilligan
, John
Shiban
, and Frank
Spotnitz

Directed by Cliff
Bole

Original Airdate


Jump The Shark
originally aired on
Sunday,
April 21,
2002.

Synopsis

Morris Fletcher faked a personal attack so that
he could contact
Doggett and Reyes. He told them that Yves Adele
Harlowe was a
supersoldier, which made them get the Long Gunmen
involved, who went
ballistic at the sight of Fletcher.

It seems that, in the time between their series
finale and this
episode, they realized that the last time they
met Fletcher he’d
suckered them into finding Yves for him. He
captured her, and
presumably let the three Gunmen go. The Gunmen
subsequently went
broke trying to find her. They had to sell their
hardware just to pay
the bills, and were left with a single,
sub-standard computer. Jimmy
was hitchhiking around the world trying to track
down Yves. He
discovered that her real name was Lois Runtz.
(Morris told them that,
too, but they didn’t believe him until Jimmy told
them.)

Armed with Yves’ real name, and the skill of
their friend Kimmy (whom
I called Kenny in the Lone Gunmen reviews) they
tracked her down.
She’d already killed one professor, and she was
about to kill another
man in a hotel when they interrupted. Her target
escaped, but they
managed to hang on to her.

This is when they learned that she was not a
super-soldier. Instead,
she was trying to fight against her father,
Morris Fletcher’s current
employer, an international arms dealer. The two
men she was after
carried a deadly virus, which would escape into
the open at 8pm,
killing everyone within a sizeable radius.

The Gunmen helped the FBI track and capture her
second target, but
they soon realized that he was a decoy. The real
target was a man
named John Gilnitz, and he was at a Bioethics
conference. They got
there with only five minutes to stop the bomb
from going off, but were
forced to split up tracking the man down.

Byers, Langley, and Frohike caught up with
Gilnitz, but it was too
late to do any surgery. Instead, they pulled a
fire alarm, trapping
Gilnitz in an air-tight cage. They were trapped
too. Jimmy and Yves
showed up after they’d been exposed.

In the final scene of the episode, Doggett,
Reyes, Skinner, Scully,
Kimmy, Jimmy, Yves, and Morris all attended the
funeral at Arlington
Cemetery.

High Point

The death of the Gunmen.

Low Point

The death of the Gunmen.

The Review

The originality of this episode is new
for the X-Files.
There have been a lot of deaths on the show, but
none that were
self-sacrifice. Even the hunt before that event
felt more like the
Lone Gunmen spin-off than an X-File. I give it 5
out of 6.

The effects this week were minimal, and
fairly limited to the
bioluminescent substance that carried the toxin,
and the exploding
speedboat. However, both were well done. I give
them 5 out of 6.

The story was nicely assembled. Yves’
personal history came
pretty quickly, but only because the spinoff was
canceled. (Her past
was originally meant to be revealed over the
complete second season.)
Morris was up to his old tricks and in fine form,
the Gunmen were
starting to feel the weight of saving a world
that didn’t believe a
word they wrote, Jimmy was showing his true
loyalty and compassion,
and Yves really became an integral part of the
group. If anything,
this episode made it clear that the Gunmen are
heroes. They fought
the good fight without giving up, and they gave
their lives to save
others. They’ve even got sidekicks named Jimmy
and Lois. The story
had me hooked before the ending. The title, a
phrase known online as
a “point of no return” for TV shows, was
perfectly suited. I give it
5 out of 6.

The acting this week was pretty good.
Even Zuleikha Robinson
seemed comfortable in the role laid out for her,
and never once grated
as she so often did on the spinoff. The Gunmen,
the guest stars, and
the funeral attendees were all believable. I
give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response this week was
pretty damn high. I
laughed for the first 55 minutes, and then I
almost cried. I really
liked these characters. This had to be one of
the most powerful
moments I’ve ever seen on TV. I give it 6 out of
6.

The production was excellent. Cliff
Bole can direct comedy
very well. Mark Snow was able to bring in the
musical themes from the
spinoff into this episode. The pacing was quick,
the editing was well
done. In short, this was a well assembled
episode. I give it 5 out
of 6.

Overall, this was an excellent episode,
and a definite
landmark as the end of the series approaches. 6
out of 6.

In total, Jump The Shark received 37 out
of 42.

The Coming Weeks

On April 28, we get the David Duchovny directed
William,
which deals with an interesting possibility about
the whereabouts of
Agent Mulder. On May 5, we get Release,
which looks to bring
up some old demons regarding John Doggett’s son.
On May 12, we get
Sunshine Days, about a guy who is
obsessed with The Brady
Bunch
. On May 19, the broadcast starts an
hour earlier than
normal for the two hour series finale, The
Truth
.