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Written by Glen Morgan and James Wong

Recap by Adrienne (aka Starbucket)

We fade in on an angel atop a lighted Christmas tree. Oh, good. The Christmas episode. Hey! It's that guy! From Twin Peaks and that show about that movie with James Spader! IMDB tells me, helpfully, that this follicly challenged gentleman is Don S. Davis. And, before you ask, not the composer. I knew you were thinking that. It's the actor. He's examining the tree with military precision as he asks someone in the background if the tree's planning on sticking around much longer. From the kitchen, Scully retorts, a trace of a smile on her face, "Yup. All year." Oh, so it's not so much a Christmas episode as a post-Christmas one. That's okay, too. Fewer Christmas carols, at least. Anyway, she continues, "Since you always made us take the Christmas tree down the day after Christmas, I'm making up for lost time." Aw, that's so sad. So, this must be her dad.

Okay, let's not kid ourselves. I've seen this episode a thousand times. And just to show you how much of a nerd I was back in high school, I actually made an audio recording of this episode and burned it onto a CD so I could listen to it on the bus. Yes. I really did. So, I kinda know it by heart. That's her dad and that woman who's about to pop up behind her is her mom. So, now that that's all taken care of, let's move on.

Scully's father, who I'm going to call Ahab because, let's face it, that's what we all call him anyway, rolls his eyes in that "my kid's crazy but I love her" kind of way, saying, "If your idea of fun is picking up dried pine needles, treat yourself." I've found that "treat yourself" is a common phrase on this series, which I find odd because I don't know a single person in real life who says it. Kind of like, "search me". Is that like, "I don't know?" Because, really, who's actually gonna search you for the answer? Moving on. Scully's mother, Maggie, pops up behind her, played by the lovely and talented Sheila Larkin, who I'm sure didn't get this job because she's married to one of the producers (R.W. Goodwin, to be precise, and I didn't even have to look that up), and with her big hair and peach sweater verbally smacks her husband upside the head, "As if he's an authority on having a good time." The Scully ladies share a moment, smiling to each other. Maggie offers to help Scully clean up what must have been a lovely post-Christmas dinner, when Ahab tells them it's time to leave. I never really understood why he's all abrupt about it, but Maggie's like, "Oh, okay" all surprised. He wants to "shove off", which indicates (very subtle, 1013) that he's in the Navy. See? With the ship lingo? Mom and Dad kiss their lovely daughter goodbye and – oh, how sweet, they do the Ahab-Starbuck thing for the first time (on the show, anyway). Oh, you know. He calls her Starbuck, she calls him Ahab. It's a Moby Dick thing. Read it. Or at least the cliff notes.

Ahab asks her about work and she nods, telling him it's good. Clearly, she hasn't told him about her crackpot albeit brilliant partner who's trying to get to the heart of a global conspiracy and reads way too much porn. It seems like Daddy wouldn't approve. Anyway, she sees them out the door, which – and I know I'm like the aside queen right now, but the door is in a totally different place than it ends up being. Right now it's, like, in the kitchen. And appears to lead right out onto the street. Which, as we all know, is in a completely different place from where it ended up, by that big dresser in the living room.

Later that night, Scully's asleep on the couch while an infomercial about, I kid you not, spray on hair, plays on TV. Maybe her father's in the market, what with the baldness, and all. She looks so cute and relaxed, curled up into a little ball and snuggled under a blanket. Her father sits in the chair opposite her under some eerie spotlight. His mouth moves, but no sound comes out. Scully opens her eyes and notices her father sitting there, silent. She tells him she thought they left, and what's he doing there watching her sleep? Cuz, Dad, that's kinda creepy. Anyway, he continues with the not-talking until the phone rings. Scully turns at the sound, and when she turns back to him, he's gone. Spooky. She gets up and picks up the phone, which is huge! There's soft crying on the other end, and after a moment we hear Maggie tell her that her father died of a heart attack an hour ago. Sad. Scully's like, "Uh-uh. He was just in my living room!" She looks back over at the chair where he was sitting, all freaked out.

Aaaand… credits. Pretty.

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