oil-drilling platform at sea, the workers are in a
bar/lounge/restaurant area. The TV goes out and the drill rig boss,
Bo Taylor, hits the TV, causing it to work again. One of the
workers, Simon do le Cruz, goes off by himself to a shop where
another man is repairing a radio. Simon carries a knife from the
kitchen. In the lounge, the TV goes out again and pounding on it
doesn't fix it. Taylor goes to find the rig's communications
officer. He finds Simon battering the radio. The Communications man
is dead. Simon is there, and is clearly frightened. Taylor's body
begins to glow and Simon screams.
FBI Headquarters, Doggett finds the door to the X-Files office
locked. He unlocks it and enters to find Mulder looking through the
file drawers, researching the recent death of an oil worker. Doggett
understands that Mulder is interested, but points out that he is not
assigned to The X-Files. Simon's body washed ashore with serious
burns. The oilrig's communications officer is also reported as
missing. The medical examiner said the burns are consistent with
radiation burns. Doggett is well aware of the files on the Black Oil
that is radioactive and can allegedly take over human bodies, but he
is not convinced about it. The phone rings - it is Scully in Kersh's
office. There is an oil executive there who says somebody in the
X-Files office contacted him. It was Mulder, working unofficially.
Ortega is waiting in Kersh's office, and Kersh is unhappy that
Mulder has been investigating the case. They have a sensitive
situation - the company has located what appears to be a huge new
oil reserve, which may spread into Mexican territory. In order to
diffuse the possible international situation, Kersh reluctantly
agrees to have the case investigated. He sends Doggett, who arrives
at the platform by helicopter, 150 miles out to sea. A new
communications specialist also arrives. Doggett discovers that
Mulder is already there. Taylor tells the two agents that Simon went
crazy and tried to blow up the rig, causing a gas valve to explode,
also killing the communications chief. When Mulder and Doggett
aren't looking, viewers see that Taylor has black oil in his eyes.
Later, in private, Mulder and Doggett argue. Mulder isn't supposed
to be there. Both agree that Taylor is lying.
does an autopsy on Simon's body. In his brain, she found evidence of
the alien virus, but it is dead. What killed it? Scully demands an
evacuation of the oilrig, in case the virus is loose. The new
communications specialist is working on the radio, which is still
nonfunctional, when Taylor enters. There is some sort of high
frequency interference being received over a large range of
channels. Taylor knocks the man out and black oil drips out of
Taylor's eyes and mouth, infecting the communications man. Later,
Scully uses the now working radio to send a message to the oilrig
and is surprised to learn that Mulder is there. He suggests that
Kersh doesn't need to know that he is there. She confirms that the
virus was in the body but is dead. Could the radiation have killed
it? It seems unlikely, since the black oil is radioactive itself.
Everybody in the rig is in danger. Scully wants to evacuate the rig
and quarantine the people. Mulder counters that Scully needs to find
what killed the virus. Doggett overhears part of the conversation
and demands from Mulder to know what is happening. Later, the news
is announced to the workers that Doggett has ordered the rig has
been quarantined - nobody can leave or arrive at the rig. The
workers all grumble.
has reviewed the crew manifest. There is one other crewmember
missing, Diego Garza. He is a deck hand and was a friend of Simon.
Nobody has any idea where he might be. Scully shows Simon's body to
Ortega. He says there is no evidence of any disease and if they
can't give him any, he'll call in the crew and rotate a fresh crew
to the platform. Mulder is looking for Diego but Doggett thinks
Mulder isn't giving straight answers. Mulder claims he doesn't know
what the oilrig workers are hiding. Mulder has seen how this
substance can take over a man's body. It body jumps from man to man
and it's not in all oil. Mulder thinks the new oil complex is
already being pumped and that the oil is filled with the virus,
ready to infect the planet. Maybe Diego is hiding because he knows
what is going on. As they talk, an alarm goes off. It's the radio
room, on fire. Mulder grabs a fire extinguisher and as Doggett runs
down the hall to get another, Diego knocks him unconscious.
and Skinner visit Scully in the morgue. The body should have been
well on its way back to Mexico by now. Kersh got a call from Martin
Ortega about the rig being shut down. Kersh intends to order the
quarantine lifted. Scully counters that communications is out so the
order lifting the quarantine can't be delivered. Kersh threatens
Scully and Skinner that they are running out of mistakes. As the sun
sets on the platform, Mulder concludes that the fire that damaged
the radio equipment was arson. Doggett wakes up to find Diego
holding a knife on him. Diego pokes him to see if his blood is red.
Doggett doesn't speak very good Spanish and their conversation is
halting, in English and Spanish. Diego set the fire to keep the
others from using the radio. "They" have to be stopped
before it is too late. "They" are coming. Who? The flying
ships are coming. Scully finds a large number of T-Cells in Simon's
blood, cells used to fight virus. Simon may have had a genetic
immunity to the virus because he is from a rare group of indigenous
Mexican Indian people. Scully thinks the rest of the rig workers
killed him because he was a threat. It could actually put Mulder and
Doggett in danger if they did get word to them.
and Diego continue to talk. Doggett says if Diego stays there, the
other workers will find him. Doggett promises to help Diego get
home. Later, Doggett crawls out of the space where Diego was holding
him, apparently having reached agreement with Diego. Taylor
intercepts Doggett, knocking him down and beginning to drip oil, but
Mulder arrives and knocks Taylor unconscious, saving Doggett. They
head for the radio room and lock the door. Doggett will try to get
the radio working while Mulder barricades the door. Outside, the oil
workers gather can begin to break down the door.
piles furniture against the door as Doggett gets the radio working.
Scully is on the other end. Scully thinks she knows why they killed
Simon. The choppers are on the way to evacuate the platform, but
Mulder orders that the helicopters not land. Doggett tells Scully
that only three of them on the platform are uninfected. Mulder
abruptly breaks the radio, and when he does, the hammering on the
door stops. He had to prevent the oilrig workers from using the
radio, because apparently they would use it to signal their flying
ships. The oilrig workers are no longer outside the radio room.
Mulder and Doggett cautiously leave the room to find out why,
Doggett calling to Diego as they go. They find Diego's body, burned.
They hear the chopper arrive and continue making their way up to the
deck of the platform. Mulder thinks that the workers are about to
blow the rig. Flames break out as the two agents run over catwalks
and through equipment rooms. In one area, Taylor and his men block
their way. Explosions rock the platform. Ultimately, they come to a
catwalk and jump into the water as the platform explodes, to soon be
rescued by a hovering helicopter.
at the FBI office, Doggett again finds Mulder in the office. Doggett
has been called to Kersh's office. The oil company has lost the
right to drill on that undersea oil complex. Mulder wants the oil to
stay where it is. Mulder tells Doggett that the blame will be
properly fixed - on Mulder. He is out of the FBI. Mulder is taking a
fall for Doggett, for the X-Files. Doggett has seen the oil for
himself. Doggett is in charge now of The X-Files now. Mulder walks
out the door as the episode ends.