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If people were to know the things I know, it would all fall apart
Cigarette Smoking Man,   One Breath

Carl Gerhard Bush Spender,[1] commonly referred to as the Cigarette Smoking Man or simply Smoking Man, is the primary antagonist in The X-Files television series.

A powerful yet mysterious operative with top-level access to both the FBI and the Pentagon, the Cigarette Smoking Man worked with the Syndicate to hide certain truths from the American public.

FBI Special Agent Fox Mulder's attempts to discover the truth behind the existence of extraterrestrial life on earth, as well as the fate of his sister, are frequently thwarted by the Cigarette Smoking Man, with Mulder often being placed in dangerous situations.

He is seeking to wipe out the human race, with the exception of a chosen few, using an alien virus.


Much of the Cigarette-Smoking Man's history is unknown, due to presumed efforts by both himself and the conspiracy to conceal the truth. One theory discovered by the Lone Gunmen, allies to Mulder and Scully, suggests that he is an orphan of a Communist spy executed by the US government. Losing his mother to lung cancer, he became a ward of the state, eventually enlisting in the US Army, and becoming a specialist in black operations during the early years of the Cold War.

Work with the State Department

Cigarette Smoking Man (1953)

The Cigarette Smoking Man in 1953.

On August 19, 1953, the CSM was a member of a group of Washington officials sent to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii to recover information from a survivor of the Zeus Faber, a submarine whose captain had been infected with the black oil. — (Apocrypha)

In July 1969, CSM observed the faking of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing. He later watched the screening with his wife Cassandra and their son Jeffrey, who were amazed at the landing, unaware of it being a fake. — (My Struggle III)

On October 13, 1973, the CSM was among the State Department officials present at the first meeting with the alien colonists. The State Department members voted and decided to form the "Syndicate" and initiated attempts to create a vaccine to stop the planned alien colonization. They informed the colonists of their plan to prepare for the colonization in exchange for postponing it for a period of time, as well as providing them with an alien fetus. The colonists agreed, taking their family as collateral, including the CSM's wife, Cassandra Spender. — (One Son)


The CSM had a penchant for smoking Morley brand cigarettes, often on government property. — (Pilot)

He had smoked since at least 1953 (Apocrypha) and would smoke up until his apparent death in 2002 — (The Truth). In 2016 he was shown to continue smoking, although mostly did it through a tracheotomy in his throat. — (My StruggleMy Struggle II)

His smoking was used to verify his presence on various occasions, such as in Krycek's car in August 1994 (Ascension), in Skinner's office in November 1994 (One Breath), in the 2400 Court Motel in May 1996 (Wetwired), and in Diana Fowley's apartment in early 1999 — (One Son). In addition, Agent Scully smelled smoke on Diana Fowley in October 1999. — (The Sixth Extinction II: Amor Fati)

Chronic smoking is often associated with anxiety, which can be seen as a symbolism for heavy remorse - or at least second thoughts - about all the cold, cruel decisions the CSM made given his responsibility to and position in the Syndicate. This habit gave him cancer (Talitha Cumi), which can again be seen as a metaphor for this guilt constantly burning him from the inside.

His signature chain smoking is also symbolic of his alliance with the colonizing aliens. Cancer is a recurring element associated with the aliens. Their experiments often leave abductees with aggressive forms of cancer, the Black Oil, which is their "life essence", can cause cancer. Even the virus that they intend to wipe out humanity with is shown to be a form of cancer. CSM's cigarette use shows his willingness to knowingly put cancer in his body.

A Morley cigarette was found in a Millennium Group archive room in the Millennium episode "The Time is Now", leading some viewers to suspect that the CSM was a member of the Millennium Group.


In the summer of 1996, the CSM learned from Jeremiah Smith that he had lung cancer. At first, he didn't believe Smith. However, he soon realized that Smith must be correct. — (Talitha Cumi)

After brain surgery with Fox Mulder in October 1999, the CSM learned that he had cerebral inflammation, and wasn't expected to live long. — (En Ami)

This sickness was noticed right away by Agent Scully when he visited her in early 2000. — (Closure)

Cigarette Smoking Man in wheelchair

The Cigarette Smoking Man confined to a wheelchair and attended to by Greta.

The inflammation had expanded by June 2000, when the CSM was confined to a wheelchair and could not breathe on his own. A nurse named Greta consequently lived with him and attended to his needs. At this point, Krycek attempted to kill the CSM and take advantage of his weakened state. — (Requiem)

When the CSM lived with the Native Americans in New Mexico, his illness seemingly died down, and he became much healthier. — (The Truth)

Despite his previous illnesses and being hit and burned by a missile in 2002, the Smoking Man was still operating in 2016 and despite having prosthetics to cover his disfigurements he was mobile and seemingly healthier. — (My Struggle III)


The CSM went by many names throughout his career. Those who worked with him, referred to him with monikers or nicknames.

These nicknames included:

  • "Cancer Man" (by Fox Mulder in November 1995) — (One Breath)
  • "Smoking Man" (by Fox Mulder in 1996) — (Talitha Cumi)
  • "Cigarette Man" (by Fox Mulder in 1997) — (Memento Mori)
  • "Smokey" or "Old Smokey" (by Fox Mulder in May 1998) — (The End)
  • "Cigarette Smoking Man" (by Dana Scully in early 1999) — (Two Fathers)
It was originally meant for the character to never be identified. He was identified in scripts and closed captioning as the Cigarette Smoking Man in every episode he appeared in. The nickname "Cancer Man" was inserted into the series as an in-joke, after it became a popular term for the CSM on internet newsgroups.

In November 1996, Melvin Frohike believed that the CSM had used the nom de plume of Raul Bloodworth. Based on the works of Bloodworth, Frohike also believed the CSM had used the name "Hunt" briefly while serving under General Francis. — (Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man)

C.G.B. Spender

In the 1960s, the CSM used the name "C.G.B. Spender" on various documents including a file pertaining to his son, Jeffrey — (Two Fathers). When Special Agent Fox Mulder confronted him with this information, the CSM seemed surprised.

In 1973, the CSM initialed the reports that called off the Samantha Mulder investigation with "C.G.B.S." — (Closure)

In early 1999, Agents Mulder and Scully discovered that the CSM went under the moniker "C.G.B. Spender". Scully investigated it and discovered its connection to many scientists and top government officials, including Bill Mulder. — (Two Fathers)

In the spring of 2000, the CSM had his office labeled with the name "C.G.B. Spender". — (En Ami)

It has never been determined if "C.G.B. Spender" is his real name or not. Scully believed it to be one of hundreds of aliases after investigating the name in "Two Fathers." In the introduction monologue for "My Struggle III" spoken by the Smoking Man, who gives his full name as Carl Gearhart Bush.


In 1968, a man working under the nom de plume Raul Bloodworth wrote the novel Take a Chance: A Jack Colquitt Adventure. He sent it to Montgomery & Glick Publishing, but the publisher, Albert Godwinkle wouldn't publish, citing how terrible it "stunk" and that it should be burned.

In 1996, Bloodworth wrote a follow-up novel Second Chance: A Jack Colquitt Adventure and sent it to Pivotal Publications. It was serialized by Walden Roth in the Roman à clef magazine.


The Cigarette Smoking Man spies on Fox Mulder, Dana Scully and The Lone Gunmen in 1996

Shortly afterward, Melvin Frohike discovered these two publications and believed them to be written by the CSM. Extracting information from Jack Colquitt in these novels, Frohike informed Mulder and Scully of the events he believed corresponded to the CSM's "autobiography." The CSM was apparently intrigued by these events, as he secretly listened in, and was about to assassinate Frohike, but decided against it — (Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man).

All of the following information comes from Frohike's story in "Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man" and it is unknown which, if any, details are correct and which are fabrications. It should be noted that his age and military duty conflicts with his activities above. This may have been deliberately changed in the story he wrote so his identity could not be tracked down, as Frohike attempted to do. The background might have been entirely fictional, and Frohike mentioned he still had to check it out more.

Early life

According to Frohike, the CSM was born on August 20, 1940 (which does not make much sense considering his apparent age as portrayed in 1953 in Pearl Harbor questioning the Zeus Faber's crewman) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. His father was a Communist activist executed as a spy, and his mother died of lung cancer. This all happened while the CSM was still quite young, during World War II, and he was raised in various orphanages throughout the Midwest.

Career with the US Army

Cigarette Smoking Man (1962)

The Cigarette Smoking Man on October 30, 1962.

The CSM became a Captain in the US Army and served in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, with fellow captain, William Mulder. He was not a fan of movies, enjoyed reading novels and never smoked. He had secretively served in several clandestine operations, including the assassination of Patrice Lumumba, the Bay of Pigs incident and the assassination of Rafael Trujilo.

On October 30, 1962, he reported to General Francis, who instructed him to assassinate the president, John F. Kennedy. He accepted the assignment without question, and was removed from the Army with all record of his service stricken in order to fulfill his new duties.

Work with General Francis

Cigarette Smoking Man killing JFK

The Cigarette Smoking Man assassinating President Kennedy in 1963.

It took over a year for the CSM's plan to unfold. On November 22, 1963, the plan was set in motion to assassinate President Kennedy. The CSM went under the alias of Mr. Hunt, and he was using Lee Harvey Oswald as a patsy. He dressed as a worker of the City of Dallas Public Works and set up at the Trinity River Outlet. He assassinated President Kennedy from that sewer opening. He later went to the Texas Theater and observed Oswald's capture when Oswald was searching for him. The CSM decided to stay and watch the movie and smoked one of Oswald's Morleys. The assassination is referenced in One Breath, when the CSM responds to Mulder extorting information from him at gun-point with "Don't try to threaten me, Mulder. I've seen presidents die."

The CSM continued to work with General Francis and write his novel. He was a fan of Martin Luther King, Jr. and was somewhat saddened when, in discussion with J. Edgar Hoover and other top officials, the CSM decided that King had to be eliminated. He decided to work with another patsy.

On April 3, 1968, the CSM arrived in Memphis, Tennessee to fulfill his duty, carrying a picture of a young Fox Mulder. He used the name Raul with his patsy, James Earl Ray, and they arrived across from the Lorraine Motel. On April 4, he successfully assassinated Dr. King and pinned it on Ray.

Soon afterward, he finally finished his novel, Take a Chance, and was deeply saddened when it was not accepted for publication. He began to focus more on his work afterwards, including Robert F. Kennedy, implying he was also killed by the secret government.

Work with Ronald

In the intervening decades, the CSM had grown to having very near full control over every secret operation in the United States. He was in charge of events involving Anita Hill, the Rodney King trial, the Bosnia and Herzegovina elections, the Super Bowl, and the 1980 Olympics. He spoke to dignitaries such as Saddam Hussein, and was disappointed when he discovered that Mikhail Gorbachev had resigned.

Cigarette Smoking Man with Deep Throat

The Cigarette Smoking Man with his colleague, Ronald (Deep Throat)

On December 24, 1991, the CSM was brought in after a downed UFO was discovered with an extraterrestrial biological entity. He wanted to study the E.B.E. alive, but his colleague Ronald, also known as Deep Throat, followed Security Council Resolution 10.13 and destroyed the E.B.E., despite the fact that it would have helped Bill Mulder's project.

In March 1992, the CSM chose Scully to work on the X-Files based on her senior thesis, Einstein's Twin Paradox: A New Interpretation, which dealt with various operations such as Majestic 12. He used surveillance techniques to monitor Scully and Mulder's first meeting, and was quite happy at Mulder being able to tell why Scully had been assigned to the X-Files.

In 1996, the CSM was overjoyed when he discovered that his second novel, Second Chance, had been accepted to be published. When CSM discovered he would lose some creative control, he was let down but still optimistic. He wrote out his resignation letter in preparation of his work's publication.

When his work hit newstands on November 12, the CSM was angered at the fact that they changed the ending to his story, and decided afterward to keep up his work and not resign from his position.


Cigarette Smoking Man (1992)

CSM in 1992.

In 1974, Cassandra Spender was returned and began to be used by the CSM in his hybridization projects. — (Two Fathers)

Also in 1974, Samantha Mulder was returned from the aliens. Hybridization experiments began on her in April Air Force Base, California. — (Closure)

Cigarette Smoking Man in the Pentagon

The Cigarette Smoking Man in a vast store room within the Pentagon.

In March 1992, the CSM was present at the meeting with FBI Section Chief Scott Blevins which assigned Special Agent Dana Scully to debunk the X-Files. After Agents Mulder and Scully investigated their first X-file in Oregon, the CSM was present with Blevins at Billy Miles' hypnosis sessions with Doctor Heitz Werber. Afterward, he placed evidence from abductee Ray Soames into a secret file in the Pentagon, where many other boxes containing evidence could also be found — (Pilot).

CIA agent and doctors

The Cigarette Smoking Man attempting to interrogate John Barnett in 1994.

In 1994, the CIA Agent attempted to interrogate John Barnett. However, Barnett died before any information was given. — (Young at Heart)

Later that year, he was present with Assistant Director Walter Skinner when Skinner reprimanded Agent Scully for her unconventional reports and investigations into the X-Files. He was also present when Skinner reprimanded both Agents Mulder and Scully for possibly injuring Eugene Victor Tooms. When Mulder and Scully finished their investigation and sent file X 129202 to Skinner, the CSM told Skinner that he believed the file to be correct. — (Tooms)

In May of that year, the CSM placed an alien fetus in the secret Pentagon files. — (The Erlenmeyer Flask)

In July, the CSM worked with AD Skinner in trying to ascertain the whereabouts of Special Agent Mulder, who had gone missing. After Mulder was discovered and reported back to Skinner's office, the CSM attempted to goad Skinner into placing Mulder on censure, transfer, suspension, and probation, a "four bagger", but when Skinner discovered that Mulder's phone had been wiretapped, he forced the CSM to leave his office. — (Little Green Men)

Soon afterward, the CSM sent Agent Alex Krycek to work against and spy on Mulder. — (Sleepless)

The CSM was present at a meeting, following Agent Scully's disappearance and possible abduction, which tried to ascertain Duane Barry's whereabouts. He closely observed Agents Krycek and Mulder. Later that day, Krycek contacted the CSM in order to tell him that Mulder had discovered that Barry was going to Skyland Mountain. After the events of Skyland Mountain, the CSM ordered Krycek to verify Mulder's version of events. When asked by Krycek why they did not simply eliminate Mulder, the CSM claimed it was policy not to eliminate him, or else Mulder's quest would become a crusade. That morning, the CSM observed the meeting with Skinner, Krycek, Mulder and other FBI agents which investigated the death of Duane Barry. — (Ascension)

After Scully's return in November 1994, the CSM visited Skinner's office. He angrily showed Skinner a report and attempted to ask him to put a stop to Agent Mulder's activities. — (One Breath)

In March 1995, the CSM was present in Skinner's office when Agent Mulder reported to Skinner about a case that he and Scully were assigned to, involving a contagion. The CSM asked Mulder questions about the case implying the Syndicate was involved. — (F. Emasculata)

In April 1995, the CSM led a group of Garnet operatives in hunting down Kenneth Soona after he broke into secret MJ documents. When he was unable to discover the MJ documents, the CSM informed the Syndicate that he had them and afterward discovered that Agent Mulder was in possession of the document. — (Anasazi)

After discovering that Mulder was at the Two Grey Hills Navajo reservation, the CSM and the Garnet operatives searched throughout the small town for Mulder and the MJ document, but was unable to find him. Soon afterward, the CSM reported to the Syndicate that Mulder had been killed and that the document had been fully retrieved. — (The Blessing Way)

The CSM's next report to the Syndicate didn't go quite as well, as the members were beginning to distrust whether he was in possession of the MJ files and whether Mulder was dead. Skinner later made a deal with the CSM in which Mulder and Scully were reinstated to the FBI and Albert Hosteen, who had told twenty other Navajos of the exact contents of the file, would not inform the public of the contents. The CSM was forced to make the deal. — (Paper Clip)

In October 1995, the CSM was able to gain Dr. Shiro Zama's records after his death. This helped further the cause of the Syndicate's alien/human hybrid tests. — (731)

In November 1995, while salvaging a UFO, the CSM once again came into contact with people infected with the black oil. When he reported to the Syndicate, they were angered by his operations involving Skinner which put their secrecy at risk. The CSM had placed the salvage UFO and his black oil- infested former operative, Alex Krycek, into a secret missile silo, Silo 1013. — (Apocrypha)

In March 1996, the CSM was present after AD Skinner was charged with attempting to murder his own wife. He was apparently attempting to discredit Skinner in order to remove the assistant director's support of the X-Files. — (Avatar)

In April 1996, the CSM was behind a scenario involving subliminal messages sent over cable wires. This was discovered by Agents Mulder and Scully. — (Wetwired)

In the summer of 1996, the CSM led a task force to capture Jeremiah Smith at the Social Security Administration. Once Smith was captured, he was held in a cell and interrogated by the CSM for several days. When Smith noted that CSM was dying of lung cancer, he was set free — (Talitha Cumi). CSM later went to watch over Teena Mulder in the hospital. The First Elder came there and confronted CSM about an obvious leak of information. He decided to set a trap for CSM's men to see who it was, and it was successful, as they learned it was X. The CSM saw that Mulder's condition worsened and convinced the Alien Bounty Hunter to heal her, as her son would be more dangerous if he had nothing left to lose. — (Herrenvolk)

The CSM listened in on a conversation between Melvin Frohike, John Fitzgerald Byers, Mulder and Scully in which Frohike thought he had found information about his past. He listened in from afar with technology that could cut through their jamming, and also had a sniper rifle trained on the door. He decided not to shoot Frohike after all. — (Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man)

In November 1996, the CSM contacted AD Skinner after discovering that Mulder and Scully were in possession of a diplomatic pouch. He was sent by the Syndicate to retrieve the pouch, which had highly classified secrets within it. He reported afterward to the Well-Manicured Man that Mulder had been spotted on a plane in Russia. — (Tunguska)

Soon afterward, the CSM was ordered by the Well-Manicured Man to discover who assassinated his physician. The CSM discovered the assassin, and his tie to the Russians, who had been attempting to inoculate their comrades from the black oil. Later, he was able to call off a congressional hearing started by Agents Mulder and Scully. — (Terma)

The CSM went to Mulder's office to meet Skinner. There, Skinner insisted he knew CSM knew what happened to Scully and that he could have it fixed. He asked him what it would take. Without agreeing to anything, the CSM simply said he would need to get back to him and left. Later, he went to Skinner's office to make the deal. — (Memento Mori)

In April 1997, the CSM ordered Skinner to scrub evidence of Jane Brody's death, and, discretely, sent the Grey-Haired Man to observe and "finish the job" (murder Detective Ray Thomas) if he didn't. He threatened Skinner afterward, and made sure to note he is involved with him and cannot go to the authorities without implicating himself.

He then reported to the Syndicate the progress with escaped smallpox-carrier bees, which he had exterminated, and the fact that he had a "man in place" to insure that that wouldn't happen again. Later, he found Skinner in his apartment threatening him at gunpoint, convinced the CSM will not help Scully. In his sly way, the CSM assured him he would, and Skinner decided not to kill him. Then, he got a call from Covarrubias for instructions on what to tell Mulder. He told her to tell him what he wants to hear. — (Zero Sum)

Cigarette Smoking Man C G B Spender

In October 1997, the CSM investigated Fox Mulder's apparent death. Despite the fact that the Syndicate believed Mulder to be dead, the CSM had his doubts. He was infuriated when he thought the Syndicate had sent someone else to keep Mulder in check. He later discovered that Mulder was in fact alive, and allowed him to retrieve the cure for Scully's cancer. — (Redux)

Shortly afterwards, the CSM reported to the Syndicate about Mulder still being alive. He claimed that he had allowed Mulder to escape with Scully's cure in order to insure Mulder's loyalty. Perhaps in response to this breach of security, the First Elder sent an assassin who shot the CSM in his apartment. — (Redux II)

After the shooting, the CSM left the United States and retired to a cabin in North Hatley, Quebec, Canada. — (The Red and the Black)

In May 1998, the Syndicate brought the CSM out of retirement. Krycek was sent with another man to get the CSM in Canada. The CSM shot the other man, but Krycek cornered him. The CSM met with the other Syndicate members and, after making a quip about the inability of the man who shot him to kill him, was asked to deal with the Gibson Praise situation. After booking a room at the Avalon Hotel, the CSM went to the psychiatric Hospital to meet up with Jeffrey Spender to tell him that he pulled the strings to get him the case and to warn him to know who to trust. On the street, the CSM was confronted by the WMM about his lack of progress when he found out Mulder went to DA about Praise. The CSM, however, insisted it was just a game. He sent the Black-Haired Man to kill the Assassin and kidnap Praise so he could turn him over. Afterwards, the CSM burned down the X-Files office in the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building. AS he left the building, he met up with Jeffrey again, and told him that he was his father. — (The End)

In August 1998, the CSM worked with Dr. Ben Bronschweig after an outbreak of Purity occurred in Blackwood County, Texas. He saw the firefighter who had been exposed to purity, however, this time the man was alive, being used for organic material. This was unlike what he had seen before, and ordered Bronschweig to test the vaccine on it. The CSM then went to London to attend Syndicate leader Conrad Strughold's meeting to address this sudden development. Afterwards, he sent the Black-Haired Man to obtain Agent Scully, who had been affected by the virus. He traveled with the bubble litter and the BHM on the plane to Wilkes Land, Antarctica to watch over her delivery into the buried UFO there. Soon, he discovered a breach of security when Mulder secretly arrived and, when the ship rocked, he realized Mulder had the vaccine and introduced it into the system. The CSM ordered all of the men to abandon the post and left Mulder. — (The X-Files: Fight the Future)

Cigarette Smoking Man with Conrad Strughold

The CSM with Conrad Strughold in 1998.

In September 1998, the CSM reported to Strughold in Foum Tataouine, Tunis, concerned that Mulder may have seen too much. This concern was brought on when he received word that the X-Files had been re-opened — (The X-Files: Fight the Future). Later that month, the CSM reported to the Syndicate about a fully gestated alien on the loose in Phoenix, Arizona. He was sent by the Syndicate to "dispose" of the problem. He was able to release Gibson Praise from Syndicate custody in order to find the creature. He then went to Spender and congratulated him about how he handled the case and Mulder. He admitted he has killed before, but also stated one could not kill what a man stands for. — (The Beginning)

By November 1998, the CSM was still keeping tabs on Mulder and Scully by consulting with Assistant Director Alex Krycek. He was present when Agent Scully attempted to ask Kersh for the use of Navy satellites. Afterwards, he attempted to contact Agent Jeffrey Spender about the information, and later worked with Kersh and Spender to discover what Agent Scully was doing. — (Triangle)

In early 1999, the CSM learned of the killings at the Potomac Yard. He investigated on the scene and knew it was the alien rebels that had killed the doctors, though Eugene Openshaw had survived and been taken to St. Mark's Medical Center. The CSM was able to clean the area of some key evidence and went to the hospital to find out what happened from Openshaw. Surprisingly, he learned that Cassandra was now a successful alien-human hybrid and the rebels wanted to expose the conspiracy by taking her alive. Openshaw noted that he would be questioned, something neither of them wanted. As he was confined in a medical bed and immobile, the CSM then manipulated the medical equipment to kill him. He left and reported to the Second Elder about the rebel attack and of an emergency Syndicate meeting to discuss. There, the CSM briefed the group on the attack. Oddly, the Second Elder suggested joining the rebels. As Krycek argued with him, the CSM gradually realized that the Elder was not really himself, and cut Krycek off. He ended the conversation by simply saying they will proceed with their plan they have had for 50 years.

The CSM had also instructed his son to catch Mulder and Scully in his office in order to have them suspended for trespassing in the X-Files office. This was to keep Mulder at bay, but his son was not so aware and came back to him at the Syndicate meeting room, demanding to know the truth about his mother. The CSM dismissed this, since he was not confident his son could handle knowledge of the full truth. Spender objected, and the CSM slapped him twice to get the message across. He intercepted his son again later, giving him a mission to kill the rebel who was impersonating the Second Elder, in order to give him a "fighting chance" of rejoining his good graces.

Nevertheless, the CSM did not have confidence in his son or anyone else to do what needed to be done. He decided to confide in Diana Fowley and she agreed to help him. — (Two Fathers)

At the next meeting of the Syndicate, the CSM encouraged the option of handing over Cassandra in order to save themselves. The group agreed, and so preparations were made. The CSM went to Fowley's apartment to look for his son when he found Mulder already there, looking through her things. He confronted the CSM at gunpoint about his new revelations. The CSM insisted Mulder had his story wrong, that his father gave his sister up to save her and work on a vaccine to save him as well, not just themselves. Mulder wanted to kill the CSM, but could not. The CSM left the apartment. After giving Mulder the name of the location where the family members are being returned, El Rico AFB, he left.

The CSM then left to get Cassandra in order to return her to the aliens. The CSM tried to have a moment with Cassandra where they would look to the future, but she vehemently disagreed with his plan, and encouraged him to kill her to stop colonization. The CSM could not, and, apologetically, left her to the group of doctors. The CSM escorted her with them via train car to El Rico. Unbeknownst to him, Mulder and Scully tried to intercept the train, but were unsuccessful. They arrived at the hangar and joined the rest of the Syndicate after meeting up with Fowley, who had just been with Mulder. CSM noted Krycek was absent, however, there was not time to dwell on it as the aliens entered the hangar prematurely. Indeed, they were actually the alien rebels and they quickly surrounded the group, however, the CSM was able to see it coming and both him and Fowley quickly escaped by car. — (One Son)


Cigarette Smoking Man watches colonization

The CSM overseeing colonization in Mulder's dream of Colonization

In October 1999, the CSM was present at a meeting which discussed an upcoming crisis somehow involving Agent Mulder and Scully's recent discovery of an extraterrestrial artifact. — (Biogenesis)

Soon after, the CSM visited Mulder in the hospital after the artifact had made Mulder immune to the black oil. He took Mulder from the hospital to a laboratory and had him sedated in order to extract genetic material from Mulder. This was an attempt to make himself immune, even though there was a chance the procedure would kill Mulder. Fowley was with him, and the CSM convinced her that he would take Mulder's burden from that point on, giving Mulder a "hero's death." The operation completed successfully and he left — (The Sixth Extinction II: Amor Fati). As a direct consequence of his attempt to infuse himself with hybrid DNA, the CSM slowly began to die from cerebral inflammation. By the next summer, he became wheelchair-bound and had undergone a tracheotomy, which may have resulted from cancer as predicted by Jeremiah Smith. [citation needed]

In 2000, the CSM found out that Scully was looking into the investigation into Samantha's disappearance. He entered her apartment and waited for her. Then, he told her that he indeed called off the search for Samantha because she could only be dead. When Scully challenged him, saying why let Mulder think she was alive, he explained it was what gave him hope. — (Closure)

The CSM got word that a scientist working with alien technology at DARPA wanted to distribute genetic research so that it could be used to the benefit of all. He decided to use Scully's identity to lure the scientist into the open. Calling himself "Cobra", the CSM gained his trust over a few months using Scully's email address and her computer. When it came time to bring Scully in, he saved a boy with cancer, Jason McPeck, and lured Scully and Mulder to the situation. When Scully alone went to investigate, the CSM made his offer in private of the research that saved not only the boy but would cure cancer for everyone, under the guise that he wanted to "make right." He also insisted that Mulder not be told. Later, in an office, he was pleased to see Scully would take up his offer. He set up a trip for the two of them, insisting that it would take time and that he was working under the radar. However, he had the BHM tail them and make sure Scully did not tip anyone off. He waited for her at her apartment and they left together. After a long drive they arrived at a house at 1AM in the morning in Milford, PA. He brought her inside and changed her clothes, which would make her furious the next morning. She almost left, but came back for the larger mission.

The CSM brought her to dinner to meet Cobra and, during, told her that the research was cure for all human disease, not just cancer. He said cobra wanted assurances that the science wouldn't be used for evil purposes. He left to smoke and meet the BHM, who confirmed that Cobra had not shown. However, he learned on his return to the table that Cobra had left a note. The next day, he let Scully go meet Cobra in a boat alone. He watched as BHM killed Cobra, but the CSM killed BHM just then rather than let Scully be killed. He let her go with a copy of the material (really a blank disc). Later, he took the real copy and threw it in the lake, confident it would not resurface. — (En Ami)

In June 2000, after a UFO crash in Bellefleur, Oregon, the CSM attempted to rebuild the project. He had Covarrubias rescue Krycek from the Tunisia prison to investigate and retrieve the UFO for him. While he was gone, he confided to Covarrubias that he knew how to find the alien ship, but didn't trust Krycek and wanted him to prove that he could do it.

However, Krycek was unable to retrieve the UFO, and instead returned to the CSM's apartment empty-handed with Covarrubias. The CSM deduced that he never intended to succeed and, indeed, Krycek attempted to kill the CSM by pushing him down a flight of stairs. — (Requiem)

Cigarette Smoking Man burning

The Cigarette Smoking Man's skin is seared off in a blaze caused by missiles fired from black helicopters.

The CSM survived his fall, and went to live in the magnetite pueblos with a group of Native Americans. He became a wise man in their tribe. In May 2002, the CSM sent Mulder, who was in hiding in New Mexico, a key to the Mount Weather Complex in Bluemont, Virginia. The CSM was later seemingly killed by black helicopters sent to kill Agents Mulder and Scully. — (The Truth)

Depopulation scheme

Despite his horrifying injuries, CSM survived and was recovered by associates of his and taken to a hospital where he received prosthetics and was expected to make a full recovery. Shortly after the closure of the X-Files once again CSM called upon Monica Reyes who came to see him in his hospital room. Having now been back in with the conspiracy and helping overseeing a plan for depopulation of the human race, CSM made a deal with Monica to work for him in exchange for her life. She reluctantly accepted, left the bureau and disappeared. Over the next fourteen years the Smoking Man would be presumed dead while he and an unknown group of associates started putting their scheme into place. — (My Struggle II)

In 2016 he received news that the X Files had been reopened. — (My Struggle)

The CSM was the leader of a plan that was involving wiping out a large part of mankind, as they were destroying the planet slowly with their way of life, a destruction which was foreseen by the aliens years ago. It is unknown if those aliens intended to colonize the planet after having wiped out humanity.

For that plan to succeed, the Spartan Virus, a virus which would deactivate the immune system in any human infected, was given to the people via the Smallpox vaccine since 2012. After millions of people died of generic disease, the world would start over with an elite in control, an elite that was given alien DNA to protect themselves from the Spartan Virus. This kind of hybridization may have been the goal of the Syndicate before its destruction, however it is unknown how it was achieved. — (My Struggle II)

The CSM planned to find Scully's son William, as he needed him for his plans and wanted to prevent another group getting to him first. He secretly tapped into the phone of his son Jeffrey, who had been hiding William and got attacked by a man trying to find out where William was. CSM informed Monica that Mulder will come after him and try to kill him.

When Skinner gets into his car to go look for Scully, he is held at gunpoint by Monica (although he grabs it off her and turns it on her). CSM gets into the car and offers Skinner a deal to join him and survive the mass extermination of humanity in return for his help finding William. However a disgusted Skinner refuses, and CSM reveals that Scully herself will survive when the end comes. After Monica leaves the car, the CSM is forced to remain with Skinner. The CSM reveals the truth of William's parentage; that he is the father due to artificially impregnating Scully using alien science, a revelation which shocks Skinner. — (My Struggle III)

While pursuing the whereabouts of his son, William, he constantly keeps in contact with Skinner, demanding that he bring him the boy. Finally, the two would cross paths later when Skinner drove Scully to Mulder's location (which happened to be William's as well). Skinner and Smoking Man come face to face. CSM himself was stuck on the passenger seat of the car, with Monica at the wheel. Skinner slowly walks toward him. Finally, when Skinner draws his weapon, CSM steps on the gas. Monica tries to stop him, but is unintentionally shot by Skinner. CSM continues to ram the car into Skinner, but not before Skinner drops to the ground.

He gets out to see that Skinner is either dead or unconscious, so he grabs his gun and continues to pursue William.

Not long after the showdown with Skinner, he comes face to face with Mulder at the edge of the docks. While aiming his gun at his first born son, Mulder (actually William disguised as Fox) comments that he believes his own father wouldn't shoot his son. CSM continues saying that he shot his second son (Jeffrey Spender) and shoots Mulder through the head.

To his surprise, he hears Mulders voice coming form behind him, who proceeds to fire multiple rounds into his father's chest. For a few seconds, Mulder looks CSM in his eyes and then proceeds to push his body off the pier and into the waters below.

Mulder watches as his father's lifeless corpse is slowly dragged away by the rough waters, ending the Smoking Man's schemes for good. — (My Struggle IV)

Illusory versions

Smoking Man and Mulder 2016

Mulder confronting the Smoking Man in Scully's premonition.

In an attempt to communicate with a comatose terrorist in another plane of existence, Mulder was administered what he thought to be psychedelic mushrooms by Agent Einstein (which actually placebo pills), which sent Mulder into a drug trip. During this trip he found himself on a rowboat, where a hallucination of the Smoking Man whipped Mulder, informing him that he came to the right place in order to find out the truth. The Smoking Man disappeared and Mulder proceeded to communicate with the terrorist who was present on the boat. — (Babylon)

In a premonition experienced by Scully in which the CSM's plans were put into motion, Mulder confronted the CSM and demanded he stopped what he was doing, but CSM told him it was too late. The CSM said he didn't want Mulder to die and wished for him to join his elite and offered him the cure, but Mulder refused. Mulder then collapses, still refusing the CSM's help.

Agent Miller comes and saves Mulder, but the CSM tells them that nothing can be done for anyone. — (My Struggle II)



Fox Mulder

The CSM refers to Mulder as his 'son.' After visiting the Mulder family in the 1960s, the CSM would fondly remember young Fox and Samantha playing — (Talitha Cumi). The fact that the CSM is his biological father has been noted in The Sixth Extinction: Amor Fati. When Scully encounters Jeffrey Spender in his disfigured state (William) she tests his DNA and believes him to be Mulder himself because their DNA is similar, but she eventually realizes him to be Jeffrey Spender, related by blood. Jeffrey Spender (The Truth) tells the military tribunal that Fox Mulder is indeed his half-brother.

In October 1973, the CSM visited the Mulder household and may have had a role in choosing Samantha being abducted instead of Fox. Fox remembered this situation in 1997 while suffering several hallucinations. — (Demons)

In March 1994, Mulder didn't recognize the CSM in Skinner's office when he was reprimanded by Skinner for possibly abusing Eugene Victor Tooms in an X-file case. — (Tooms)

In July 1994, the CSM wiretapped Mulder's phone in an attempt to send Mulder on probation and out of the FBI. His attempt failed when Mulder told AD Skinner about the wiretapping. — (Little Green Men)

In August 1994, Mulder was present at two meetings with the CSM involving Agent Scully's disappearance and the death of Duane Barry. He began to suspect that his partner, Alex Krycek, was working with the CSM after discovering cigarette butts in Krycek's car. — (Ascension)

In November 1994, shortly after Scully's return, Mulder discovered where the CSM lived. Mulder appeared at the CSM's apartment on 900 W. Georgia Street and attempted to threaten him for information. Mulder failed and, in his disgust, nearly resigned from the FBI. — (One Breath)

In March 1995, Mulder had a conversation with the CSM in Skinner's office in which the CSM informed Mulder that the truth sometimes needs to be hidden from the public in order to protect them. — (F. Emasculata)

In April 1995, Mulder came into possession of a top secret MJ document which was being searched for by the CSM and Garnet operatives. The CSM desperately searched for Mulder and nearly killed him when lighting an old refrigeration car on fire. — (Anasazi)

In November 1995, while searching through silos for a missing UFO, Mulder was discovered by the CSM and taken back to Washington when it was discovered that he knew nothing. — (Apocrypha)

In the summer of 1996, the CSM was threatened once again by Mulder when visiting Mulder's mother in hospital. — (Talitha Cumi)

In October 1997, the CSM allowed Mulder to gain the cure for Scully's cancer from the Advanced Research Project Facility in the Pentagon. He later visited Mulder and helped explain how the cure worked by inserting a microchip in Scully's neck. The CSM later brought a person who he claimed to be Samantha Mulder to meet with Fox at a restaurant. The next day, the CSM attempted to persuade Mulder to work for him, but Mulder turned the offer down. Mulder later believed the CSM had died after much of his blood was found in his apartment. — (Redux II)

In August 1998, the CSM was quite perplexed when he discovered Mulder in Antarctica, and even more confused when he discovered Mulder had the Purity vaccine. — (The X-Files: Fight the Future)

In early 1999, the CSM had a conversation with Mulder when he found him searching Diana Fowley's apartment. The CSM told Mulder of the events involving his father in 1973, and informed Mulder of the location where the colonization was to begin. — (One Son)

In October 1999, after being exposed to an alien artifact, Mulder became an alien/human hybrid. When the CSM put him to sleep to work on extracting his alien genetic material, Mulder entered a dream state where he had several conversations with the CSM, and ultimately ended up living in the same neighborhood as he was while alien colonization that Mulder had apparently caused took place outside. While Mulder was in the dream, some of his genetic material was removed to provide immunity for humans against the viral Sixth Extinction. The material was implanted in the CSM, although, as stated above, it eventually began to slowly kill him. — (The Sixth Extinction II: Amor Fati)

In May 2002, the CSM secretly sent Mulder the key to the Mount Weather Complex. With this key, Mulder learned of the date set for the colonization. When Mulder once again set eyes on the CSM, he at first believed him to be a ghost. — (The Truth)

In February 2016, Mulder confronted the CSM on how to prevent the Spartan Virus being killed. Mulder himself was infected, although CSM offered to save his life in order to help start over, but Mulder refused him as he wouldn't be able to forgive himself. Mulder than began to get sick from the virus, but was saved by Agent Miller and taken away. — (My Struggle II)

Jeffrey Spender

The CSM raised young Jeffrey Spender for a period of time in the early 1970s at April Air Force Base with Samantha Mulder. — (Closure)

During his retirement in 1998, the CSM sent a letter to his son Jeffrey, but Jeffrey returned it without opening it. — (The Red and the Black)

In May 1998, the CSM informed Spender, who did not recognize him, that he had him assigned to the Gibson Praise situation. The CSM also told Spender to know whom to "sacrifice" when necessary, and to not follow someone else's crusade. He later informed Spender that he was his father and they began working together. — (The End)

In September 1998, he met with Spender in his newly assigned X-Files office. He informed Spender of the "extreme solutions" that are sometimes used in their line of work. — (The Beginning)

In early 1999, Spender had a heated confrontation when he believed his father was simply using him for his dirty work. Even so, he accepted when the CSM sent him out to kill a rebel alien impersonating the Second Elder. When he discovered from Krycek that his father had been involved in directing his mother's experiments, Spender was angered and decided to stop working for the Syndicate. — (Two Fathers)

After the destruction of the Syndicate, the CSM appeared in Spender's X-Files office, and shot him for his betrayal. — (One Son) When Spender didn't die, the CSM subjected him to brutal cloning experiments. — (The Truth)

Spender, disfigured by his injuries, later remembered that the CSM had destroyed his face and his dignity, but was unable to eliminate the one thing that Spender loved the most - his hatred of his father. Spender attempted to take revenge on the CSM by injecting a liquidized form of magnetite into Scully's baby son, William. The metal would stop the aliens that the CSM had conspired to aid from acquiring William, the one thing they needed. — (William)

Samantha Mulder

In the 1960s, the CSM would often visit the Mulder home and would fondly recall young Samantha decades later. — (Talitha Cumi)

The CSM may have had a role in choosing Samantha to be abducted. — (Demons) (Note: The flashbacks seen in "Demons" were hallucinations and may or may not have actually happened.)

The CSM initialed the documents which called off the search for Samantha after her abduction in 1973. — (Closure)

After her return in 1974, the CSM raised Samantha with his son, Jeffrey, at April Air Force Base in California, all the while continuing experiments on her. She ran away from the base in 1979, and by the time the CSM showed up with other government officials at the Dominic Savio Memorial Hospital, she had disappeared. — (Closure)

According to Jeffrey Spender in May 2002, Samantha died, essentially by the CSM's hand, in 1987. — (The Truth)

In October 1997, the CSM brought a woman he alleged to be Samantha to meet with her brother, Fox. She claimed that she had been raised by the CSM, that he was her father, and that he had cared for her throughout her entire life. — (Redux II) (Note: The episodes "Two Fathers", "Closure" and "The Truth" establish that she could not have been the real Samantha, but she may have been a clone used by CSM.)


Syndicate photograph

The Cigarette Smoking Man standing to the far left of his colleagues of the Syndicate in a photograph from the early 1970s.

In 1973, the CSM had a photograph taken with his colleagues at the State Department, who would all later form the Syndicate. Those in the picture included Bill Mulder, the Well-Manicured Man, Victor Klemper and Deep Throat. — (Paper Clip)

William Mulder
Cigarette Smoking Man and William Mulder

The CSM with William Mulder.

The CSM and William Mulder had worked together in the State Department since at least 1953, when they were sent to interview a black oil survivor of the Zeus Faber. — (Apocrypha)

The CSM would often waterski with Bill at the Mulders' summer house in Quonochontaug, Rhode Island. — (Talitha Cumi)

In October 1973, the CSM was still visiting Bill at the summer house. — (Demons) (Note: The events remembered by Fox Mulder in "Demons" were hallucinations and may or may not have happened.)

In April 1995, the CSM visited Bill Mulder after several years. He informed him of the recent MJ document which was in the possession of Bill's son, Fox. — (Anasazi)

Well-Manicured Man

In a Syndicate meeting in April 1995, the CSM reported to the Well-Manicured Man that everything had been dealt with involving Mulder and the missing MJ files. — (The Blessing Way)

The Well-Manicured Man had grown increasingly angry at the CSM shortly afterward when he noticed the CSM's penchant for lying and implying that their problems could be solved "with enough bullets". — (Paper Clip)

In November 1995, the Well-Manicured Man was at odds with the CSM when he believed that the CSM put the Syndicate's security and secrecy at risk in botching a UFO salvage operation. — (Apocrypha)

In November 1996, the CSM reported to the Well-Manicured Man on his farm in Charlottesville about the situation involving a diplomatic pouch. The Well-Manicured Man once again had to remind the CSM how this problem couldn't be solved with killing. — (Tunguska)

The CSM assisted the Well-Manicured Man in finding the assassin of his personal physician, Dr. Bonita Charne-Sayre. — (Terma)

In May 1998, the CSM was recalled from his retirement by the Well-Manicured Man to retrieve Gibson Praise. The CSM told the Well-Manicured Man that the Well-Manicured Man was a coward, and the Well-Manicured Man hated the CSM's attitude that their operations were all a "game". — (The End)

In August 1998, the CSM called the Well-Manicured Man at his home in Somerset, England to inform him of a Syndicate meeting scheduled in London. The Well-Manicured Man did not approve of the CSM's suggestion of working with the alien colonists after the Purity virus mutated. — (The X-Files: Fight the Future)

Alex Krycek

In 1994, the CSM sent Krycek to spy on Agent Mulder as his partner when the X-Files were closed. — (Sleepless)

In August of that year, Krycek began showing hostility towards the CSM after he was ordered to support Agent Mulder and not eliminate him. Krycek did not like the secrets that the CSM kept from him nor the fact that the CSM treated him like a common soldier. — (Ascension)

In April 1995, the CSM sent Krycek to kill Bill Mulder in the search for the missing MJ tape. — (Anasazi)

The CSM then sent Krycek to kill Dana Scully. When he failed to complete the task and killed Melissa Scully instead, this caused unnecessary tension between the CSM, Krycek, and the Syndicate. — (The Blessing Way)

Soon afterward, the CSM sent Krycek to retrieve the missing MJ document from AD Skinner. Krycek received the document, but was nearly killed with a car bomb afterward by others sent by the CSM. As a result, Krycek angrily broke off all ties with the CSM. — (Paper Clip)

In November 1995, Krycek was infested with black oil, and immediately contacted the CSM. The CSM locked Krycek in Silo 1013 with a UFO salvage ship. — (Apocrypha)

In May 1998, Krycek was sent by the Syndicate to retrieve the CSM from his retirement in Canada. He brought the CSM back to the Syndicate, and was about to kill him before being ordered by the Well-Manicured Man not to do so. — (The End)

In early 1999, Krycek was working for the CSM again as his driver and chief operative. He assisted Jeffrey Spender in the assassination of a rebel alien, and was surprised to learn that the CSM had shared little information with Spender. — (Two Fathers)

In June 2000, the CSM sent Krycek to Bellefleur, Oregon to retrieve a UFO. Krycek instead worked with Mulder before he returned to the CSM's apartment and attempted to finally "send the devil back to hell." . — (Requiem)


In April 1996, X was sent by the CSM to help discover Mulder's source. The CSM was then seemingly unaware that X was that source. — (Wetwired)

Marita Covarrubias

In April 1997, the CSM informed his operative and Mulder's source, Covarrubias, to work with Mulder and "tell him what he wants to hear". — (Zero Sum)

In June 2000, the CSM called Covarrubias to assist him in his final days in bringing back the project. She was sent to release Krycek from a penal colony in Forj Sidi Toui, Tunisia and was present when Krycek attempted to kill the CSM soon afterwards. — (Requiem)

Diana Fowley

In early 1999, the CSM turned to Fowley, following his son's attempt to kill the rebel alien, for help dealing with the rising rebel situation. He informed her of the events that had occurred leading up to the "Second Elder"'s assassination. — (Two Fathers)

Fowley remained close to the CSM, and was to go with him and the Syndicate when colonization began. When it turned out to be fake, and a group of rebels began to slaughter the Syndicate, Fowley and the CSM immediately left. — (One Son)

In October 1999, Fowley was sent by the CSM to watch over Fox Mulder and report on his condition. — (Biogenesis)

Later that month, Fowley was present when the CSM extracted genetic material from the hybridized Mulder. She was murdered soon afterward. — (The Sixth Extinction II: Amor Fati)

Scott Blevins

The CSM worked with Blevins in assigning Special Agent Scully to debunk the X-Files. He often advised Blevins on certain situations involving the X-Files. — (Pilot)

Walter Skinner

Walter Skinner and the Cigarette Smoking Man with Dana Scully

In 1994, the Cigarette Smoking Man watches as Assistant Director Walter Skinner talks to Agent Dana Scully.

The CSM worked with AD Skinner in a similar capacity as he did with Blevins. In 1994, he assisted Skinner in pressuring both Agents Mulder and Scully during their investigation of the Tooms case. — (Tooms)

In July of that year, the CSM assisted Skinner in investigating Mulder's disappearance. After Mulder returned and Skinner learned that the CSM had wiretapped Mulder's phone, Skinner kicked him out of his office, much to his shock. — (Little Green Men)

In August, the CSM had once again been allowed access to Skinner's meetings, if not his office, and was present at two meetings concerning Duane Barry and Agent Scully's disappearance. Skinner barely acknowledged his presence. — (Ascension)

By March 1995, the CSM was back advising Skinner in his office on a situation involving a deadly contagion. — (F. Emasculata)

In April 1995, the CSM attempted to use Skinner in order to gain information from Scully about the location of missing MJ documents. — (The Blessing Way)

Soon afterward, Skinner negotiated a deal with the CSM to reinstate Mulder and Scully to the FBI. This event severed ties between Skinner and the CSM. — (Paper Clip)

In March 1996, the CSM attempted, and failed, to discredit Skinner by having him arrested for attempting to murder his wife. — (Avatar)

In February 1997, Skinner contacted the CSM in an attempt to cure Scully's cancer. The CSM informed him that there was a certain way to cure the cancer and that he would be willing to sell that method to Skinner for a price. — (Memento Mori)

In April 1997, Skinner was finally made to pay the price so that Scully could be cured. He was involved in covering up the murder of Detective Ray Thomas, and the CSM had used his gun for blackmail. He later appeared at the CSM's apartment and threatened him with a gun when the CSM implied he wouldn't save Scully. — (Zero Sum)

In 2016, CSM offered Skinner a deal to survive his upcoming plan to depopulate the human race, however on the condition he helps him get Scully's son William. Skinner throws the deal back in his face, and CSM reveals the true father of William: which is CSM himself. — (My Struggle III)

Alvin Kersh

On November 16, 1998, the CSM was speaking with AD Alvin Kersh when they were interrupted by Agent Scully. He was later assisted by Kersh when they were trying to ascertain what Scully was trying to do. — (Triangle)

Romantic Interests

Teena Mulder

Special Agent Fox Mulder was conceived from an extraconjugal affair between CSM and Teena Mulder. — (The Truth)

The CSM would often visit Teena and her family in the 1960s, and they were quite close. — (Talitha Cumi)

William B. Davis' favorite line of dialogue from the third season finale, "Talitha Cumi", involved the Cigarette Smoking Man referencing Bill Mulder, when the CSM tells Teena Mulder, "He was a good water-skier, your husband. Not as good as I was, but then... that could be said about so many things, couldn't it?" Davis was amused and aware that this reference to William Mulder additionally implied that the CSM was a lot better in bed than Mulder had been. The statement was also an inside joke, as – at the time the episode was produced – Davis was actually a championship-level water-skier in reality.

In the summer of 1996, the CSM visited Teena in order to reminisce about the past. She suffered a stroke soon after and was hospitalized. The CSM visited her in hospital. — (Talitha Cumi)

He stayed by her at the hospital for days, apparently trying to wait for Fox Mulder. Soon after X's death, the CSM contacted an Alien Bounty Hunter who cured Teena of her brain damage. — (Herrenvolk)

Cassandra Spender

The CSM was married to Cassandra in the late 1960s, and fathered young Jeffrey Spender with her. — (The Red and the Black)

On October 13, 1973, the CSM offered up Cassandra to the alien colonists in return for an alien fetus and postponing the colonization. She was returned soon after. — (One Son)

Beginning in 1974, the CSM directed the hybridization experiments on Cassandra. — (Two Fathers)

In early 1999, the CSM was saddened to learn from Dr. Openshaw, that he might have to kill Cassandra to protect the conspiracy. He soon realized that he was unable to kill Cassandra to protect the conspiracy. — (Two Fathers)

The CSM finally decided that he would have to return Cassandra to the colonists, which would inversely start the colonization.

Other Friends and Enemies

Dana Scully

Scully first noticed the CSM when she was assigned to the X-Files. She noticed his lack of humor and constant appearances in Blevins's office. — (Pilot)

She noticed the CSM in AD Skinner's office when she was reprimanded during the Tooms case in 1994. — (Tooms)

In April 1995, during his search for the missing MJ documents, the CSM ordered his top assassins, Alex Krycek and Luis Cardinal to murder Scully. They failed and murdered her sister instead, causing tension between Scully and the CSM. — (The Blessing Way)

In November 1995, Scully came into contact with the CSM while searching for a UFO in North Dakota. She was promptly sent back to Washington. — (Apocrypha)

In April 1996, Scully was tricked into believing Mulder was working with the CSM through subliminal messages sent to her via cable wires. She quickly discovered they were false. — (Wetwired)

By November 1996, Scully was firmly convinced that the CSM did not believe in the United States and its laws. — (Tunguska)

In August 1998, after being infected with the black oil, the CSM led a team to retrieve Agent Scully and take her to a secret base in Antarctica. — (The X-Files: Fight the Future)

In November 1998, Scully learned that both AD Kersh and Agent Spender were working with the CSM and began to avoid them. — (Triangle)

In early 2000, the CSM attempted to dissuade Agent Scully from investigating the abduction of Samantha Mulder. He believed this would hurt Fox's crusade — (Closure). In the spring of 2000, the CSM contacted Scully with the supposed cure for all disease. Scully left with the CSM to get the cure, all the while taping the conversations she had with him. The CSM brought her to a cabin in Milford, Pennsylvania to meet with his contact, Cobra. Scully was able to get the disk containing the cure from Cobra, just after he was killed. The CSM saved Scully and soon replaced her disk with another before she left. — (En Ami)

In June 2002, Scully found out that the CSM was still alive and seemingly toying with her and Agent Mulder. — (The Truth)

Gibson Praise

In May 1998, the CSM kidnapped Gibson Praise and handed him over to the Syndicate. — (The End)

In September 1998, the CSM used Praise to hunt for an alien who had killed several people in Phoenix, Arizona. Praise accused the CSM and the Syndicate of being very afraid of him. Praise later ended up in the custody of Mulder and Scully. — (The Beginning)

Background Information

Character Creation

In the original script for the episode "Pilot," the character of Lake Drazen, an FBI agent, was the template for the Cigarette Smoking Man. Drazen was to have introduced Scully to Mulder, and be present at Mulder's slide-show presentation. At the end of the script, Drazen threw Scully's report into an incinerator, reminiscent of the CSM in the final episode.

William B. Davis was the actor who most frequently portrayed the CSM in episodes of The X-Files. However, both Craig Warkentin and Chris Owens, the same actor who played Jeffrey Spender, portrayed younger versions of the CSM. Warkentin appeared in "Apocrypha" and Owens appeared in both "Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man" and "Demons".

Although William B. Davis first appeared in the pilot episode of The X-Files, it was not until "Young at Heart" that he was first given dialogue. His character in that episode may have been the CSM and, if so, his first lines would also be the CSM's first words. However, the character was not clearly established as being the CSM and was instead credited as "CIA Agent". The first time that the CSM definitely did speak was in "Tooms".

Cigarette Smoking Man animated

An animated version of the Cigarette Smoking Man.

The CSM made a short but memorable appearance in The Simpsons episode "The Springfield Files". In a pose virtually identical to that seen during his first appearance on The X-Files, the CSM is seen smoking a cigarette while standing next to a filing cabinet that he leans on.

Although not a regular member of the cast, Davis, along with David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, are the only cast members who appeared in the pilot episode that continue to feature in the series, and also appeared in the original series finale "The Truth".


He appears in the 2004 video game The X-Files: Resist or Serve which takes place during the show's seventh season, with William B. Davis reprising the role.

In the Topps Comics series of comics, the Cigarette Smoking Man appears in Not to be Opened Until X-Mas (the series' first issue), A Little Dream of Me (the third issue) and Thin Air (issue seventeen).

The character also appeared in the comic book series The X-Files: Season 10 by IDW Publishing, which acted as a continuation to the television series.


Internet Movie Database

Revealing mistakes

  • Throughout the series when we see a closeup of CGB Spender's/The Smoker's ashtray while he is extinguishing his cigarette, the filters of the "smoked" cigarettes already in the ashtrays are perfectly white, while they should be yellow/brown from the nicotine-smoke. This indicates that they are props, placed there before shooting and not cigarettes smoked by the characters. Either they are an experimental stain free type of cigarette, or they are herbal, like the ones used by non smoker William B. Davis, who plays the Cigarette Smoking Man, in order to give CSM a reputation for toughness.


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