An old car drives
up to a house at night and a tall, slender man gets out and enters
the darkened house. A woman in bed awakes and calls to her husband,
George. He is a mortician and smells of embalming fluid. She tells
him to go outside and undress to get rid of the smell. Going onto a
porch to change clothes, George sees what appears to be a
man-creature, hanging from the porch roof. When the women comes to
check on her husband, the creature is on top of him, snarling. The
bat-like-creature attacks her as well.
The opening credits
have changed yet again. We no longer see Mulder's badge in the
sequence, instead Gillian gets the first credit and Robert gets the
second credit. We see pictures of Scully & Doggett
In the X-Files
office, Scully is looking at Mulders desk name plate away as Doggett
Men's Voices: Chatter,
joking. "So this is where the bad kids are banished to... Put
me down here I'd probably cook up a lot of crazy ideas too..."
The tone is sarcastic. Teasing banter.
Scully: Good morning.
Doggett: Morning. [Accomponied by two other agents] Catch up
with you guys later. Friends of mine. Just curious.
Scully: I'm not here to be a curiosity. I'm here to work,
Doggett: I am, too, Agent
He has been there
all weekend, reviewing all the X-files in the filing cabinet. She is
surprised and asks him if he has any questions. He just laughs and
says, "Just a few". He wants to know how they will arrange
their desks but Scully tells him that this is Mulder's office and
they will just be using it for awhile. She then takes the nameplate
back out of the drawer and puts it back on the desk.
Scully lists the
details of a case of two deaths in Idaho. The cause of death is
blood loss from numerous bites that appear to be human. Two of the
fingers of the man had been eaten off, and there were bite marks on
his head, torso and hands. There is no motive or pattern. Doggett is
at a loss to understand it. He tells her that he has seen some
violent crimes, but that this is serious screwed up stuff and
They arrive at the
home in Burley, Idaho. The Sheriff tells them that they think they
can handle the problem themselves, but some hotshots in the county
seats think that it is beyond them. Doggett tells the Sheriff that
he is baffled by what he has seen, which surprises the Sheriff.
Scully however tells him that they see cases like this regularly in
their area of unit, and that Doggett is just new to the X-Files. She
says that she can assure him that there is nothing baffling about
human bite marks.
They aren't sure
now that these bites are human, he tells them. They look at one
footprint that has four toes and doesn't appear to be quite human
according to the Sheriff. Scully however thinks that they're from an
animal either and thatís not an uncommon birth defect, no more
rare than polydactyly.
What did she just say?
Doggett: I assume she means it could be human.
Scully points out
that there is only one print, and if it was an animal, there sould
be many prints around the yard. Scully asks Doggett if he believes
her, and he just says that heís going to go look around.
Inside the house,
Doggett finds a second print. Maybe there are no more prints in the
yard because it didn't go through the yard. Doggett thinks there is
a human criminal with a deformed foot.
familiar with the principle of Okamís razor?
Scully: Yeah. You take every possible explanation and you
choose the simplest one. Agent Mulder used to refer to it as
Okamís principle of limited imagination.
She asks him if he
has a simple answer as to how it happened when there are only prints
every twenty-five feet. In a closet, Scully finds an open trap door
to the attic. Using a chair, the agents enter the attic, used for
storage. Scully thinks whatever it was probably escaped this way.
ever carry one of these?
They find two
fingers, missing from George's body. Scully tells Doggett that from
the smell of it, they were regurgitated. There is also a ceiling
beam with marks as if something had hung by huge claws.
looks like to me,I donít know, like it was, it wasÖ
Scully: Hanginí there?
[Doggett shakes his head in agreement]
women is attacked.
autopsies but cant find anything that alleviate anyone's fears about
what killed the people, to which Doggett questions that whether she
means "who" killed them. She tells him what she found
leans more towards an animal explanation. The scratches on the body
match the four-toed print they found, and the bites have fang-like
tears. What she thought were marks left by human molars are now
inconclusive because of enzymes that were found in the bites that
are clearly inhuman. The enzymes are anti-coagulants which are found
solely in the saliva of bats. She tells him that she canít explain
it, but she owes the sheriff an apology. He tells her that maybe she
doesnít. Doggett has found newspaper articles from Montana in 1956
reporting similar events in which five people died or disappeared,
in some cases with body parts being found later at other locations.
A hunter killed the creature which seemed to be half man, half bat.
At the home of the
new victim the agents examine the claw marks. Scully determines that
the woman's dead daughter had been found in the river, terribly
burned, the week earlier -- a daughter the woman had not seen since
1956. These killings only started when the body was found, Scully
points out. She says that the body was burned for a reason and they
need to find out why. She wants the womanís body exhumed. The
sheriff says that he wonít do it, so Doggett whispers something to
him and he agrees to have it exhumed.
Scully angrily asks
Doggett on what he whispered to the Sheriff. He tells her that he
told the man to listen to her as she is incharge of The X-Files that
dealt with paranormal phenomenon and is the expert. She tells him
that she is not an expert, but a scientist who has seen a lot. He
tells her that she is taking a leap, and that it is not the way he
works, even if most of the X-Files were solved with leaps of logic.
She tells him that she thinks believing the newspaper article was a
pretty big leap.
A man with a cloth
around his face walks into some kind of shack or barn. He walks over
to a wooden beam and pulls two small bats off of it, then puts them
in a cage. There are more bats around squeaking. He then walks out
and carries them into his cabin. He shuts the door and on the back
is a stuffed bat.
Scully succeeds in
getting the daughter's body exhumed, but when the workers arrive,
the grave is open and the lid of the coffin scratched. As the truck
drives the coffin off, the detective, now alone in the nighttime
graveyard, is attacked by a man-like creature that flys at him.
body is brought to the morgue where the other officers confront
Doggett. If they had not listened to the FBI agents, they could have
been out tracking this thing down. Scully, with her far-out
theories, is not welcome here. Scully, meanwhile, finds that the
daughter died of congestive heart failure and was only burned
afterward, apparently to hide something. Scully is convinced that
"it" is killing like an animal, but with a purpose. Each
of the victims had contact with the burned body. The undertaker
prepared it, her mother IDíd it, and the detective got the call
when she was found. He asks her who else would have had contact with
it, and she tells him that the man who pulled it from the river
They talk with
Myron Stefaniuk near the river, but he wants to be left alone.
Doggett determines that Myron's brother, Ernie, was one of three
hunters who killed a half man-half bat in 1956. The newspaper says
the brother disappeared, but Myron just wants to be left alone and
says that he didn't need their help.
The agents spend
several hours watching as Myron putters around the equipment in the
yard. Scully doubts herself. Maybe she's trying to force the facts
into a theory.
Weíve been sitting for 12 hours. The only thing this man appears
to be in danger of is loneliness. Maybe Iím wrong. Maybe this is
all just a grand coincidence, and weíre wasting time out here.
Doggett: You were so sure before.
Scully: I was sure of the facts as I had deduced them
scientifically. But maybe Iím only forcing them into shape.
Manufacturing a theory.
Doggett: What happened to taking a leap?
Scully: Maybe Iím trying too hard.
Doggett: To what? To be Mulder?
Doggett tells her
that he may not be Oxford educated. All he knows about the
paranormal is that men are from Mars and women are from Venus.
However, he doesnít think sheís wrong. She asks him what makes
him think that. He tells her that heís no Fox Mulder, but he can
tell that the man is hiding something. He says that Myron fished a
woman out of the river whoís been gone for forty years. He has a
brother he hasnít seen in over forty years -- a brother who just
happened to hunt down some creature over forty years ago. She asks
him what the man has to hide. He tells her that thatís what heís
hoping their good cop work is going to find them.
barn/workshop we see the man-bat hanging from the ceiling. Late at
night the agents see Myron sending gasoline cans on a little ferry
raft across the river to an island. The agents investigate in a
rowboat. On the island they find the Ernie, who has been living
alone in a cabin because his fear became an obsession. He has stayed
hidden in the cabin for forty-four years in case it came back for
him. His face is scored with deep scratch marks, long healed. He
knows that bats are near the apes in the evolutionary ladder. He
suggests that a man may have sprung from bats. It hunts like a bat
but with the cold-blooded vengeance of a man. Scully says that even
if that were true, how could it find him out there on an island. He
says that he needed to cut off all contact. Communication could be
only one way. However, his brother gave him help.
The burned body was
his wife, who had lived with him in isolation for 44 years. She
thinks the man-bat is following Ernie's scent, detected through the
burned body, because everyone killed had contact with the body.
Ernie warns the agents that it only attacks at night.
Doggett goes off to
find Myron and at the shore he is attacked by the man-bat. They
struggle in the water but Doggett drives it off.
Scully and Ernie
talk. The moment the agents stepped foot in the cabin they became
marked, he says. It will wait as long as it has to. A security
system beeps -- something is coming in through the trees. They hear
noise on the roof. Scully fires her gun through the ceiling and the
noise stops. She ventures outside but Ernie realizes that the thing
is inside. Scully hears Ernie's gun fire and enters -- it's up in
the cabin rafters. Doggett appears and the man-bat attacks. The
agents drive it off with their guns, but Doggett is injured. Ernie
Back in Washington,
Doggett receives a FAX from Myron -- he is going into hiding. Does
Doggett believe that the thing is out there and will come after
them? Doggett is pretty sure that both he and Scully hit it with
their guns. FBI agents who are friends of Doggett are making some
noise about the field report on this case. "Get used to
it," Scully tells him. She thanks him for watching her back but
he says he never saw it as an option. Scully says she will make sure
Doggett has a desk in the X-Files office. Scully puts Mulder's
nametag into a desk drawer.