Millennium is an American television series created by Chris Carter which aired on the Fox network between 1996 and 1999. It centered around FBI investigator Frank Black, played by Lance Henriksen, and his dealings with the mysterious Millennium Group. Although the series finished before the actual Millennium, an episode also titled Millennium - which aired as part of The X-Files seventh season - paid final respects to the series.
Series Overview[edit | edit source]
Millennium centers upon Frank Black; a calm and methodical freelance forensic profiler and former FBI agent with a unique ability to see the world through the eyes of serial killers, murderers and their victims. He refrained from calling himself a psychic, though. Frank was often called in by the police to investigate their most violent and perplexing crimes while at the same time dealing with, often receiving assistance from, the mysterious Millennium Group, whose power and sinister intentions became increasingly clear throughout the series.
The pilot and subsequent first season served to introduce the Black family; consisting of Frank, his wife Catherine, five-year-old daughter Jordan, their dog Benny - and the local Seattle P.D. officers. The family had recently left Washington D.C. for Seattle, where Frank was born and raised, because he wanted to protect his family from the evil which his job as a criminal profiler with the FBI had brought him into daily contact with. The end of the pilot saw Frank receiving a series of Polaroid photographs of his wife and daughter in an envelope with no return address, setting up a stalker thread that would end the season on a cliffhanger. It has been misconstrued that Frank was psychic, although series creator Chris Carter have reiterated in commentaries on the Millennium Season One DVD that Frank simply had "a gift", which Frank also considered "a curse". In the second season, though, showrunners Glen Morgan and James Wong essentially had Frank admit to being a psychic. Regardless, his daughter, Jordan, turned out to have inherited her father's "gift" on some level, suggesting that Frank's abilities are not entirely derived from the knowledge and experience he gained from his work as an FBI profiler. In the pilot, Frank has accurate flashes of a murder from simply viewing the victim's corpse zipped inside a bodybag, visions which could not possibly be attributed to a typical profiler's talent. These visions became a recurring theme and Frank's main tool in profiling and investigating crimes.
The final season showed Frank returning to Washington and to profiling work at the FBI, following the death of his wife, Catherine Black, at the hands of the Millennium Group. Frank was joined by a young female partner; Emma Hollis. The Millennium Group was shown at a distance as Frank became alienated from his closest connection to the Group, Peter Watts. The episode "Skull and Bones" depicted a mass grave in the path of a new freeway that contained the bodies of former members of the Group. Later in the season, in the episode "Seven and One", the demonic entity - that fans have dubbed "Legion" - assumes the form of one of the Group's security men. The implication being that the Group had become corrupted by the very evil it was intended to fight against. Despite Frank's warnings and her own eyewitness accounts, Emma makes a commitment at a moment of personal weakness that sees her isolated from all non-Group assistance and Frank is last seen escaping from Washington, having taken Jordan from school.
Production Information[edit | edit source]
|Number of Episodes Produced:||67|
|On Air:||September 25, 1996 - May 21, 1999|
|Created By:||Chris Carter|
|Executive Producer(s):||Chris Carter|
|Filming Location||Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada|
The X-Files Connection[edit | edit source]
Both The X-Files and Millennium were dark drama series produced by Ten Thirteen Productions, based on original ideas by Chris Carter, and broadcast on the FOX network. While it is generally accepted that the two shows take place in the same fictional universe, they dealt with dramatically different themes and only directly linked in a few specific aspects.
In the first season episode "Lamentation", Frank Black returns to the Behavioral Science Unit at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. As he speaks to Peter Watts on a staircase outside the Unit's offices, two figures bearing an uncanny resemblance to Fox Mulder and Dana Scully can be seen walking down the stairs behind him. The actors in this scene were not David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson but their stand-ins.
The first positive indication that the two shows shared the same fictional universe involved the on-screen appearances of fictional novelist José Chung. Chung, first created by writer Darin Morgan for The X-Files episode "José Chung's From Outer Space", was the focus of the Millennium episode "José Chung's Doomsday Defense".
During "The Time is Now". Peter Watts stumbles upon a Morley cigarette stub, the brand of choice of The X-Files' recurring characters the Cigarette Smoking Man and Monica Reyes, lying on the floor of a secret Millennium Group storage area.
As Emma Hollis walks through a Vancouver apartment building in "Human Essence", viewers can clearly hear Agent Scully's shouting voice, a snippet of dialogue accompanied by soundtrack from The X-Files episode "Kill Switch", coming from a resident's television.
After years of waiting, Ten Thirteen Productions finally delivered an official The X-Files/Millennium crossover on November 28, 1999, just prior to the millennial changeover. The fourth episode of The X-Files' seventh season, entitled "Millennium", guest starred Lance Henriksen and Brittany Tiplady as Frank and Jordan Black. Although minor references were made to certain events from Millennium's third and final season, and the character of Frank Black was treated with respect, certain incongruities with the themes and spirit of Millennium and the story's overall poor quality have caused fans to take the crossover episode with a grain of salt. "Millennium" did not, despite fan hopes, provide any dramatic sense of closure for the canceled series' dangling mythology.
Cancellation[edit | edit source]
Consistent low ratings caused the FOX network to decide to cancel the series after its third season. Several factors contributed to the increasingly small audience base, including the complexity of the series' mythology, conceptual problems, its difficult Friday night time-slot, a lack of critical attention, a lack of promotion, and poor scheduling/marketing decisions made by FOX throughout the run of the series. The show also attracted controversy for being part of what was seen as a trend of increased violence in television shows.
A FOX network representative offered these simple words to explain the network's position: "What we ultimately need to do as a major broadcast network is provide viewers the series they find most relevant and emotionally rewarding, and to many, Millennium fit both those bills. However unfortunate, roughly nine out of every ten people watching television found something more to their liking than Millennium on Friday nights. Yesterday, FOX announced its new 1999-2000 fall schedule, and I must report that Millennium did not make the line-up."
Main Cast[edit | edit source]
- Lance Henriksen as Frank Black
- Megan Gallagher as Catherine Black (1996-1998)
- Brittany Tiplady as Jordan Black
- Klea Scott as Agent Emma Hollis (1998-1999)
Episodes[edit | edit source]
Season 1[edit | edit source]
(Season 1, 22 episodes)
Season 2[edit | edit source]
(Season 2, 23 episodes)
Season 3[edit | edit source]
(Season 3, 22 episodes)
Possible Feature Film[edit | edit source]
Lance Henriksen has continually supported moving Millennium to the big screen. Reportedly, he has brought up the issue with Millennium creator Chris Carter several times, explaining Carter's stance as thus: "Chris wants to do a movie based on Millennium. Probably not calling it Millennium, but using that character. He's talked about that and it's in the air.". Henriksen also suggested that the chances of the film ever being made were directly linked to the DVD sales of the series.
Lance Henriksen attended Collectormania in Manchester, UK between November 17–18, 2007, where he was asked by a fan about any involvement in The X-Files: I Want to Believe, an upcoming movie in The X-Files series. Henriksen responded by saying that Chris Carter had specifically asked him not to comment on any involvement, one way or another. However, themovieblog.com recently reported that a source close to Lance Henriksen has revealed that he is actually not involved in the film. This has led to some rumours circulating that Chris Carter asked Lance not to mention one way or another, as Carter was planning a Millennium movie after the release of The X-Files: I Want to Believe.
DVD Releases[edit | edit source]
Every episode of Millennium has been released on DVD:
- Millennium Season 1 DVD
- Millennium Season 2 DVD
- Millennium Season 3 DVD
- Millennium Seasons 1 - 3 DVD (Region 2 Only)
Background Terminology[edit | edit source]
Legends[edit | edit source]
A legend is an explanatory piece of information accompanying an illustration, map or chart. Many legends appear in Millennium, usually including information such as time or setting, over the events of a scene.
The first Millennium legend appears in the pilot and reads, "DOWNTOWN SEATTLE; FEBRUARY 2, 1996". The series' finale, "Goodbye to All That", features the last two legends of the series, which read, "MAY 21, 1999" and "ONE WEEK EARLIER".
Legends were also used in episodes of The X-Files and The Lone Gunmen. The term 'legend' was never used on-screen in either series, but originates from terminology used by production personnel.
Quotes[edit | edit source]
Quotes sometimes appeared at the start of Millennium episodes. The following is a list of the quotes used in the series.
- "I smell blood and an era of prominent madmen." - WH Auden
- "Dead Letters"
- "For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me. And what I dreaded has happened to me. I am not at ease, nor am I quiet; I have no rest, for trouble comes." - Job 3:25, 26
- "The Judge"
- "...the visible world seems formed in love, the invisible sphere were formed in fright." - H. Melville (1819-1891)
- "I am responsible for everything... except my very responsibility." - Jean-Paul Sarte
- "Kingdom Come"
- "And there will be such intense darkness that one can feel it." - Exodus 10:21
- "Blood Relatives"
- "This generation is a wicked generation; it seeks for a sign, and yet no sign shall be given to it..." - Luke 11:29
- "The Well-Worn Lock"
- "The cruellest lies are often told in silence." - Robert Louis Stevenson
- "Wide Open"
- "His children are far from safety; They shall be crushed at the gate without a rescuer." - Job 5:4
- "The Wild and the Innocent"
- "O Lord, if there is a Lord, save my soul, if I have a soul..." - Ernest Renan
- "But know ye for certain...Ye shall surely bring innocent blood upon yourselves and upon this city..." - Jeremiah 26:15
- "Loin Like a Hunting Flame"
- "Two souls, alas, are housed within my breast." - Faust
- "Force Majeure"
- "You can remember, a single deluge only, but there were many previous ones." - Plato
- "The Thin White Line"
- "A man's past is not simply a dead history...it is a still quivering part of himself, bringing shudders and bitter flavours and the tinglings of a mertited shame." - George Eliot
- "He said to me in a dreadful voice that I had indeed escaped his clutches, but he would capture me still." - St. Teresa of Avila
- "Thou dost frighten me with dreams and terrify me by visions." - Job 7:14
- "I remember the very thing that I do not wish to; I cannot forget the things I wish to forget." - Cicero
- "Every man before he dies shall see the devil." - English Proverb 1560
- "Powers, Principalities, Thrones and Dominions"
- "Paranoia is just a kind of awareness, and awareness is just another form of love." - Charles Manson
- "Broken World"
- "Man is the cruellest animal" - Nietzsche
- "Behold ye scoffers, For I will work wonders in your days, which ye will not believe." - Book of Rabakkuk
- "Paper Dove"
- "And now there is merely silence, silence, silence, saying all we did not know." - William Rose Benet
- "Sense and Antisense"
- "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers." - Henry IV, part 2, act 4, scene 2
- "The Curse of Frank Black"
- "Do you ever find yourself talking with the dead? Since Willie's death, I catch myself every day, involuntarily talking with him as if he were with me." - Abraham Lincoln (upon the death of his son)
- "Goodbye, Charlie"
- "Let us go in; the fog is rising." - Emily Dickinson, her last words, 1886
- "The Fourth Horseman"
- "So I looked, and behold, a pale horse. And the name of him who sat on it was death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given to them over the fourth of the Earth, to kill with sword, with hunger, with death... and by the beasts of the earth." - Revelation 6:8
- "How long, Lord - how long will the wicked triumph?" - Psalms 94:3
- "...Thirteen Years Later"
- "Never believe anything you see on Halloween." - Reverend M. Goodman, October 31, 1985