Friday, December 3, 2010


“Shapes” was written at the request of FOX. The network wanted Mulder and Scully to face a more traditional monster. The writers chose to use werwolves. More precisely, they chose maritou, a native american evil spirit which inhabit’s a man through his blood, turning him into a wolf-like creature at night.

Mulder and Scully head to rural Montana when the murder of a young Native American by a rancher who claims he was shooting at a giant wolf sounds similar to the very first X-File from 1946. In an interesting bit that adds some credibility to the FBI keeping the X-Files open, that file was kept by J. Edgar Hoover himself. Scully thinks this is an open and shut case. The rancher has been having a dispute over property boundaries with the local tribe. He most certainly shot the young man trespassing. It is all a matter for the local authorities.

The story meanders a bit until the rancher is mauled, presumably by a werewolf, and his son is found the next morning, naked in the field behind their house. At this point, there is no attempt to offer up a red herring for the audience. The son was bitten by the werewolf is father killed. Now he is inhabited by the Manitou. It is only a matter of time before he is alone with Scully when the sun goes down. He becomes a werewolf and is killed by the local sheriff before scully ever gets any definitive proof of lycanthropy. She surmises it was a mountain lion which broke into the house and mauled him. Yes, seriously.

As with yesterday’s episode, the twist is quite flimsy. As soon as Scully finds the naked guy in the field after his father has been mauled, we know what he is and who he is going to attack next . No effort is made to surprise. Considering there was twenty+ minutes of screen time left, the too early obvious clues make for a story that peters out quickly. I am not a big werewolf guy, either. “Shapes” is not horrible. It just lacks a point of interest in the final act.

Rating: ** (out of 5)

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