4x14 Leonard Betts

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How would you rate 4x14 "Leonard Betts"?

1 = never should have been made
 
2 = mostly time wasting material
 
3 = fun, average, undemanding
 
4 = good episode, totally had fun watching it
 
5 = one of the best hours of TV you'll ever see
 
 
 
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4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by Rey Solo on Sun 08 Jul 2012, 01:52

4x14 "Leonard Betts"
Original Air Date: 26 January 1997
Written by: John Shiban, Vince Gilligan, Frank Spotnitz
Directed by: Kim Manners

Mulder and Scully investigate the strange disappearance of a man's body from the hospital morgue. When an identical man starts to work at the same hospital, Mulder believes that the man has the ability to regrow parts of his body which include his head.


Watching X-Files for the first time in a long time and made it to Leonard Betts... and all I can think is....

"Get her! Get her before she mutates!"

crackup

I'm on caffeine... I'm sorry. But it would've been cool if they killed her with cancer (I mean, yay! She survived cancer {in a cheap kind of way since she lucked out and was cured by an alien computer chip})... you know... before she mutated into Weepy-Scully.
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by gorgclaud on Sun 08 Jul 2012, 07:49

Well, I think the Cancer arc for Scully was quite a character development but the way she got cured was a bit lame. I would have liked her to either pass or live with it longer. I don't know. Maybe they gave it enough time.

Leonard Betts.

This is my NUMBER ONE FAVOURITE EPISODE OF THE X FILES OF ALLLLL TIIIIMMMMMEEEE!!! banana

But I am about to play a game of Dungeons and Dragons so I will be back to GUSH later!!!! (I am seriously playing D&D!)

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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by Rey Solo on Sun 08 Jul 2012, 10:20

Leonard Betts is a good episode! I actually loved the cancer arc when I first saw it. I thought it brought good characterization to her (and was every excuse in the book to bring in Bill Jr. and I LOVE him!).

I think my favorite quote from this episode is: "You have something I need". And the way he says it makes it so eerie! Classic X-Files.
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by gorgclaud on Sun 08 Jul 2012, 11:16

I know. How intriguing ! I think my fave line might be "Will the real Leonard Betts please stand up."

I love Bill Scully Jr too I wish we saw her other brother too though.

I will be back to talk all Leonard Betts. Expect epic post of doom!
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by gorgclaud on Sun 08 Jul 2012, 17:23


My Missing Ep

Let me just explain a few things, how it was for as an X-Files fan when it originally aired, how I saw this episode. I am sorry this is not as brief as some might like, but I feel I should explain to express how Betts made me feel.

To me, its funny thinking back on how things were with TV programmes, because these days there isn't any such thing as waiting for or missing episodes. Sure we might have to see fresh episodes weekly, but if we missed them that night most times they available online on the channels player or someone might upload it to You Tube. Back in the 90s if you missed an ep, you would have to wait for VHS ( :LOL: ) or the repeat which could be months or even years.

Now, back in the 90s, in the UK there was SKY tv and normal (terrestrial) TV, which consisted of BBC1,2 ITV (channel 3) and Channel 4. And these still exist but other channels came much later. Sky was something you paid for (even though you had to pay BBC for having any sort of TV, no matter what channel) but SKY was like cable. They would get all the new shows from America and show then about a year to 6 months after the US showed them. There were more channels too etc.


We did not have Sky then, as it was a luxury, so I found The X Files on BBC2. During seasons 1, I saw them on BBC2, season 2 - 6 I saw from Sky sometimes and then all on BBC. I was only able to see it on Sky by an aquaintance / friend at school, Samantha, who was rich and had Sky and during the days of Duanne Barry and Abduction Era of season 2, we had an English lesson and sat together for the 1st time and started talking about The X files, of which she was a fan of. I was jealous she was seeing the new eps, when I was still on the last few eps of season 1. So she said she would "tape" them for me and give me the tapes the days after. Sometimes she did, sometimes she didn't. We weren't always friends too so, that affected when she would record it for me. So I saw Season 2 and 3 in a strange messed up way. She had a friend who recorded it for me now and then but again, she was not always reliable nor always my friend! School eh!?

Season 4 got recorded for me by another friend, Debra, whom I befriended when we started talking in our only lesson together, Child Development in early 1996, when she talked to me about watching Season 2's Colony ep and I told her End Game was awesome and she had to tune in next week for it. We became friends quickly and shared our obsession for X-Files and Krycek, Mulder and music together. So she took over as the one to record Season 4 for me off Sky. I think she was on season 2 by SKY repeats, and I was on Season 3 on BBC (watching again or watching eps missed off Sky). She got most eps for me, some eps were released on VHS before any airing in the UK, they were always the Myths eps, but one ep she missed was Leonard Betts.

So the 1st time I saw Leonard Betts was after seeing all the rest of Season 4, except for Synchrony also, on BBC1, November 26th 1997. I was no longer friends with Debra by then, I had left school and was in full time work. I saw Momento Mori fromm Sky in May 97, so I had waited about 5 months for this.

Seeing the ep was a big deal for me. I loved season 4, I loved the Cancer arc and I had read a lot about Leonard Betts, I was expecting a lot in terms of what it meant for Scully but actually had no idea about the rest of it. I can remember sitting on my carpet, in front of our TV, very excited. Slightly worried the ep would not be very amazing but sure it was going to fill the gap in the puzzle of season 4 and the Cancer arc that I loved so much. To see Never Again and then Momento Mori made MM more shocking to me, so I needed to see Leonard Betts to make the Cancer Arc more smooth to me.

The ep turned out to not be about the cancer arc, till the last 5 minutes, even then, if you did not know the future eps, you might think Betts was just wrong or they would not follow it up immediately in the next eps. But I was glad it was not all about that arc but more aptly about Betts, in the way "Tooms" was about Tooms.


The Teaser

I think the start of the teaser caught me so hugely that I had forgotten all about the facts above: the cancer arc; the fact it was my missing ep; the fact I had read so much about this ep; the fact I had waited so long; the fact this missing ep reminded me of the bad falling out I had with the friend who forgot to record this ep for me.

I remember adding the 1st seconds of the teaser to my Kim Manners tribute vid after he passed, because I believe it to be amazing. I love the way the camera is up high, birds eye style, following this stranger ambulance. I love the way the ambulance moves, the lighting, the music, the way the ep just thrusts you right into the action, to the midst of the ambulance driving to save an unknown man they have with them. Full focus on the ambulance crew, who comes across as more important than the usual Vancouver medical people extras the show has used before. The before you can even breathe in the ambulance crashes wildly and awfully! yikes


This is amazing story writing! Before you know who the man is who is hurt in the ambulance, before you know who the medics are, before you have any clue to what's going on, you just see a vehicle crash, and an ambulance, the last kind of vehicle you would ever want to see crash.

Then before you can breathe out, we see one medic sans head!!! It isn't even over! We follow a dude at work in a morgue, with a walkman on (which back then reminded me of myself in the job I had, when I had to move the shoe boxes around in the stockroom and this is similar to Gilligan's Roadrunners, with the hitch-hiker with walkman on the bus and this reminds me of myself on the bus home after work). but even over his music he hears a nose. Uh oh. Its always creepy being alone in a morgue, being alone at night and hearing a noise. So he moves along to see what the noise was and the beheaded medic is walking out of the morgue, with head !!!!!! If that is not an awesome and shocking teaser, I don't know what is!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So then we really welcome the appearance of Mulder and Scully, straight after the theme music, looking cutely together into the empty morgue bed. After a teaser of events like that, we need these two on the case!!



Things I loved


This ep isn't particularly beautiful asthetically, though I personally love the way it looks, but I mean beautiful like The Field Where I Died, Without, Dreamland One Breath or The Unnatural is but they somehow manage to make this ep looks beautiful even with all the gritty locations, the weather and the subject.

I have always said one reason this is my 1st fave ep was because it captured all the best things the show was about - Monster/Mutant, Mythology,Mulder being humourous, Scully not believing in an entertaining, non-annoying way, a mutant/monster we feel for, science, intrigue, events that mystify, Mulder and Scully working as a team, interviewing, Mulder knowing what's going on so easily. With this, give it a lovely typical bad weather Vancouver look but add some snow just to make it more different! I loved seeing Mulder and Scully in real snow, this was a 1st. And add some wonderful music by snow, sad and action-packed, add in the best director, Kim Manners, who makes mundane X Files scenes look iconic and crime scenes amazing with lights and darkness.

I was excited to see Chuck Burks again. I don't think we had seen him since The Calusari in season 2. Season 3 acked the re= occurring characters and thankfully season 4 sorted that out for us to enjoy. His scene was funny and cool. I adore the way the light falls on Mulder and Scullys faces and how Scully, like Doggett in Badlaa, quizzes Chuck and makes him out to be untrustworthy scientifically or factually.

I love the way they take a horrible thing like Cancer and make it so someone actually needs it. I think thats clever and the way his mum is about him. I think it is sweet and she gives him her cancer. I love it when Mulder and Scully interview her. Once she is all sweet and innocent, the next she is a tough, naughty mum or won't answer them because she cares for her son, who in her mind, has only done what he had to do to survive. Very clever storytelling.

I love the iconic moments of Scully doing an autopsy and Bett's moves and freaks out Scully and then she calls Mulder and is all comically vague about it. He knows whats going on but she doesn't want to admit it, even though she experienced it. Again, this ep has everything the show has done -Scully dong an autopsy, but what a fabulous one! To have the dead man move when she is about to cut him! Classic! If we have a show like The X Files, this is the type of thing it should do and I am glad they did.

The way Mulder is all casual about the whole case makes the viewer feel better amongst the grimness, makes us feel good he knows whats going on and he is happily doing his job.

I love the scene when Bett's breaks off his thumb, then cuddles his poor old colleague, and grows a new head back. For me, I hate gory things but this the kind of unreal horror I love! I was grossed out and it is shocking but its amazing to see!!!!! Its so shocking its almost funny! This is the kind of horror the show gets famous for and gets the kids at school the next day talking about.



The Climax

So its all cool action, cool investigation, a blowing up car, 2 versions of one character burnt to a crisp and then with all of this atmosphere, we are unprepared for the coming scenes.

Scully is alone with Bett's mum in ambulance, without delay, no need to get into the hospital and have it all unfold there, get it done outside the hospital, in the ambulance. Scully is on the phone to Mulder and as he is on the line, she realises she is in trouble, Bett's is there. Scully is in trouble. She whispers "Mulder get over here now." calmly and climbs the ambulance and gets pulled down by Betts into the back of the ambulance> This again all happens so fast, we don't see Mulder on his way and we know he will be some time. She fights Betts in a cool way and in another shockingly unique thing we have never seen before, she kills him with the defibrillators by zapping him on the head!!! yikes

He shoots out the back doors of the ambulance and lays on the floor. Within all this madness, before they fight, he tells her she has something he needs. And from what he was doing through-out the ep, we know he needs cancer> Scully had cancer> wait> WHAT?!

The way this is revealed like this is so clever. To have it amongst the action, with a monster we care about, he is suddenly attacking another character we care about and have invested in more, so suddenly our loyalties to Betts have switched to Scully. She sorts him out like a boss. This whole ep moves so quickly and like an old fashioned film, every scene that is in the ep is there for a good reason.

So then the aftermath, like Roadrunners, isn't so much about the case now, we aren't concerned about Betts now, a little perhaps, but now, we are told he is dead, so that's the end of that and now all we know is Scully has cancer, she knows, Mulder doesn't. She sits in a car, shocked, muted and sullen. Mulder comes to her, like his usual Mulder self - carefree, reliable but ignorant to the fact Scully is dealing a massive shock that has nothing to do with fighting Betts. Mulder even says to her "you did a good job, Scully. You should be proud." He doesn't realise what her sadness is for, but strangely excitingly, we do.

Sad music comes in as Mulder drives away with her, her face looking like we have never seen it look in these 4 seasons before, as Mulder shuts the door of the car for her, as she sits there, dour. Her hair seems to sit and curve around her face in a beautiful and usual way and she shoots Mulder this look that just tells us everything and also how good an actor Anderson is when she has something meaty to do.

And it isn't over. We now find her in bed coughing. She puts her light on and finds spots of blood on her bed, then feels it dry on her nose...she knows, we know...the coughing, the blood, the having what Betts wanted.....the music makes it so sad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! cry ........and then the titles.........What a ride!! Makes me wanna watch it again.

Becoming my No.1 Ep of all time

I fell deep in love with it. It beat all expectations. One Breath was my 1st fave ep of all time for many years and nothing beat it, though sometimes I just feel that one, this and Roadrunners all share the top spot, depending on my mood or nostalgia, but Betts came along and took over the top spot for me then and there.

It captured everything good about the show. It captured everything good about the characters, about season 4, about how the show can scare you but make you sad for people, good people, somewhat not-so-good people. The script and storytelling is possibly the best I have known, amongst some new Doctor Who eps. The way the story moves along and just adds more intrigue and more drama. The look of the ep, the atmosphere, the whole original story, how it linked to Scully and her abductions and the tests. What a way to tell us she has cancer but a character who knows nothing of Scully's past, but knows because he needs it. WOW/

It snowed the day after I saw this ep, my bus broke down on the way to work because of the snow and I wasn't even mad. All I was thinking of was the ep and of Mulder and Scully talking in snow for the 1st time.

Even though I knew what was going to happen with Scully in the following eps, it didn't spoil the ending for me. It was the way we all found out that made it so entertaining, even if you knew. But I can imagine, if you did not know she had cancer before that scene, then that scene must have been even more dramatic!


I told you it was gonna be long. Don't make a thread of my No.1 fave ep and expect me not to write a lot!! I am so sorry! blush



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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by Queequeg on Wed 11 Jul 2012, 15:10

An amazing episode and I also agree the cancer reveal was brilliant.

gorgclaud, do not apologize for the long post, in depth analysis of the episodes is what makes this forum great!
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by Cassiopeia on Wed 11 Jul 2012, 15:39

I love long posts too smile I *must* come back to this thread to reply in more depth, but DUDE! I just heard some loud thunder! Gotta check the weather to see if I need to unplug things!
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by gorgclaud on Wed 11 Jul 2012, 18:36

Oohhhh!!! We had loud thunder today here in the UK!! Its been yonks since a good storm!!

Thanks for being ok with my epic posts of doom! biggrin
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by jsabat28 on Sun 15 Jul 2012, 22:47

The first time I saw this WAAAY back when it was on the air and Betts told Scully that she had something he needs, and then she woke up with a nose bleed , it was like "oh oh."

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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by Rey Solo on Sat 13 Oct 2012, 12:27

Don't shoot me, I gave it a 3. smile
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by gorgclaud on Sat 13 Oct 2012, 12:34

my vote is obvious!
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by Sue866 on Wed 17 Oct 2012, 23:38

Really, really enjoyed this ep much more this time around. It felt like classic Season One/Season Two Mulder and Scully with him believing the far-fetched re-growing body parts thing so easily and Scully basically refusing to believe what's right in front of her. Scully you're so stubborn. :P

I thought the story was neat, the interaction wonderful. Some wonderful gross stuff. I love the view of them both digging in the hospital waste bin! And a rather shocking ending with some real Scully emotions. Even knowing about Memento Mori, I felt it was still a striking revelation about Scully being sick. Then we see the nose bleed. Better get that taken care of my dear!

The ONLY negative is the dated, poorly done effects of Betts' head-morphing. It's a bit silly and detracts oh-so-slightly.

Otherwise I love this episode.

Gosh, the way this season is going, I think it might be my second favorite season after Season Eight!! I'll hold off on that til Season Seven, cuz I think I have a soft-spot for that one too!
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by gorgclaud on Thu 18 Oct 2012, 04:36

Totally has a season 1 or 2 feel to their partnership, one reason why I love it so much.
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Re: 4x14 Leonard Betts

Post by TheInvisibleMan on Mon 19 Nov 2012, 23:35

Good episode. That line "you have something I need" is so beautifully played, for anyone who hasn't seen it before/doesn't know about the cancer arc, it's such a fantastic, unexpected and low-key way to deliver an explosive revelation. It's a shocker.
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