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"Three of a Kind" is the twentieth episode of the sixth season of The X-Files. It first aired in the United States on May 2, 1999. The episode was written by Vince Gilligan and John Shiban, and was directed by Bryan Spicer.

Three of a Kind follows on from the season five episode Unusual Suspects, concluding The Lone Gunmen and Susanne Modeski story line. The episode is a "Monster-of-the-week" story, independent of the series' mythology arc.


The Lone Gunmen encounter Susanne Modeski while infiltrating a defense contractors' conference in Las Vegas.


Byers infiltrates military defense contractor poker game.

In a high stakes poker game, Byers of The Lone Gunmen) is thrown out after being exposed as a fraud at a government convention. Unbeknownst to the other Gunmen Byers is harboring an attraction to a long gone fellow conspirator and hoping to meet her at the convention.

Jimmy Belmont is pulled from the vents by Timmy and his thugs.

The Gunmen cleverly trick Scully into coming to Las Vegas using a text to speech program. The Lone Gunmen's friend Jimmy Belmont, uses his secret technique for gaining access to a secret meeting room where he believes he will learn about new assassination techniques employed by the government. Shortly after the Gunmen and Scully learn of his 'suicide'. Byers tracks down the co-conspirator, Susanne Modeski, who has seemingly had a turnaround in her perception of the government.

Scully and Langly are performing the autopsy when they are attacked by an agent who injects something into Scully who falls asleep. It turns out Susanne is pretending to have switched sides so she can slow progress on the governments harmful initiatives. She works alongside the Gunmen to set up her new husband who she discovers has been lying to her.

Scully wonders who gets to light her fire.

Timmy, the late Jimmy's friend, asks Langly to attend a Dungeons & Dragons game in Jimmy's honor but it is just a setup to inject Langly like Scully and Jimmy. Frohike finds an extremely flirtatious Dana Scully at the bar with a large cluster of men around her, including Morris Fletcher. He takes her back to the suite where Susanne Modeski recognizes Scully as suffering from the effects of a chemical weapon she developed known as analytic histamine. Its effect is to make the victim very vulnerable to suggestion; perfect for mind control. She hadn't actually made the compound yet except for a small batch accessible only to her and her husband Grant Ellis, confirming her husband's betrayal.

She counteracts the weapon's effect on Scully as Langly returns. His neck has the puncture wound now.

Langly reports to Timmy the next morning and is given his instructions: Enter the meeting room using the provided pass and fire three rounds into the target during a break.

Scully attempts to enter the meeting hall but is stopped by security outside. Langly draws a gun and shoots Susanne Modeski three times in the chest during the break. Scully comes in with the guard and has him call for an ambulance. Byers and Frohike arrive as the EMTs and take her away on a stretcher. Unfortunately the ruse fails as Timmy Landau tastes the blood on the floor and realizes it is corn syrup, not blood.

Susanne Modeski confronts husband Grant Ellis.

Grant Ellis is taken to Susanne Modeski by Scully so she can confront him about why he gave the drug to the government. She is furious as she could have been killed had she not checked Langly the night before. Ellis attempts to convince her that he didn't know they were going to have her killed but she pushes and names the price for his betrayal: the sparing of his own life. Timmy arrives, guns down Grant Ellis, and takes Susanne to the Lone Gunmen's suite.

Timothy Landau arrives with Susanne Modeski.

Byers attempts to take Timmy down when he has the gun to Susanne's back but Timmy easily knocks him down by pistol whipping him. Turning his gun on Langly and Frohike, he sneers.

"You know the best thing about killing you three ... I won't have to dress like you anymore..."

At this moment, CIA operative Timothy Landau is injected with the AH compound from a prostrate Byers. As it takes ahold of him and he collapses, they have to figure out what to do with him.

On the television, a reporter states that Timothy Landau confessed to the murders of Grant Ellis and Susanne Modeski. At the same time, Scully learns that the Lone Gunmen tricked her into coming into Las Vegas.

Susanne Modeski and John Fitzgerald Byers share one kiss.

Byers explains to Susanne Modeski that all computers and so forth believe she is deceased and that she has a new identity. She asks Byers to go with her but he explains he has to keep up the fight. She kisses him goodbye and hands over a wedding ring meant for Grant Ellis.

Frohike, Langly, & Byers go back to the slots.

Langly and Frohike try and cheer him up.

"You know, Byers, growing old with us ain't so bad."

"Oh, shut up, Langly. You really want him to kill himself?"


Memorable Quotes[]

  • "In my medical opinion, beeeeeeeep" *claps hands* - Dana Scully's intoxicated explanation for Jimmy Belmont's cause of death, jumping in front of a moving bus.

Background Information[]

Introductory Details[]

  • Fox Mulder does not appear in this episode, but actor David Duchovny gives a voice performance, when the Lone Gunmen use voice editing software in order to phone Scully.

Cultural References[]

  • At the poker game, the defense contractor asks Byers about the "AE-135" unit. The AE-135 unit was the unit in 2001: A Space Odyssey that HAL 9000 claims has failed, causing Discovery to lose contact with Earth.
  • Frohike asks the bouncer if he wants to "Thunderdome", a reference to the "Mad Max" films.
  • Scully refers to The Lone Gunmen as "The Three Stooges".
  • Langly wears Motorhead, Ozomatli, and Snoozonica T-Shirts.

Other Episode Notes[]

  • Jimmy states that he will have front row access to the unveiling of a new stealth assassination technology. This becomes vaguely prophetic when he becomes the first known victim of that same technology.
  • The Lone Gunmen contact Scully as they need someone with authority to help with their investigation, but believe Mulder would be too well known to those in attendance.
  • Three of a Kind is why the Lone Gunmen got their own series. The dailies were so good for that episode that it was realized there was strong potential in making a spinoff series starring Tom Braidwood, Bruce Harwood, and Dean Haglund as their respective characters of Frohike, Byers, and Langly. (Audio commentary from All About Yves, TLG DVD Commentary)


  • This episode continues the storyline of Susanne Modeski trying to fight the government's development of mind control technology, first seen in "Unusual Suspects".
  • After being injected, a drugged Scully is surrounded by a group of suitors. One of these suitors is Morris Fletcher, who offers her a Morley cigarette. As Frohike drags her away, she gives Fletcher a smack on the butt, a throwback to Fletcher having smacked her on the butt when he traded bodies with Mulder in "Dreamland" and "Dreamland II"


  • The shadow of camera equipment is visible on Susanne Modeski's back during Byers' dream.
  • Just before Scully makes the Y-incision on James (Jimmy) Belmont, you can see the pulse in his neck beating.
  • The credits on the DVD incorrectly list the character of Grant Ellis as Grant Snow.
  • Timothy Landau cocks his gun after entering The Lone Gunmen's room, even though the semi-automatic weapon should have already been cocked.


  • Frohike calls Susanne Modeski Mata Hari: Mata Hari (born Margaretha Zelle) was a Dutch citizen who achieved fame as a dancer and high-class prostitute who was executed in 1917 accused of spying for Germany during World War I.
  • Scully Golightly is a reference to the film Breakfast at Tiffany's and its flighty main character played by Audrey Hepburn.
  • Def-Con is an actual convention that has been held in Las Vegas. In reality it is a gathering of computer hackers, not of defense contractors.
  • The shot of Byers dunking his head into a bucket of water filled with ice cubes references the shots of Huey Lewis dunking his head into a sink filled with ice cubes in the Huey Lewis & The News music video for "I Want a New Drug". Signy Coleman was a model in that music video and another Huey Lewis & The News music video "Heart and Soul".



Guest Starring


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