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"Without" is the second episode of the eighth season of The X-Files.


As the FBI task force continues to look for Mulder, they encounter an alien bounty hunter among them. Scully helps to defeat the alien and, after the task force is called off, she is surprised to learn that John Doggett, the leader of the team, has been assigned to the X-Files.



Alien Bounty Hunter as Mulder releasing Gibson Praise.

Fox Mulder and Gibson Praise have been cornered at the edge of a mountain by John Doggett. Suddenly Mulder walks off the edge, but when the FBI agents are sent down to retrieve him, he has disappeared. Dana Scully realizes that it wasn't Mulder, but an Alien Bounty Hunter. Back at the school, the Bounty Hunter replicates to the school principal and Special agent Gene Crane in his search for Praise. Scully is able to slip away, with some help from Walter Skinner. Scully follows Praise's friend throughout the desert, until she finds Praise in an abandoned mine.

After Doggett explains to Alvin Kersh about Mulder's body, Skinner tells him that he is being set up as the leader of the taskforce, to fail. Doggett then calls Special agent Landau and asks about the whereabouts of Scully, Landau tells him that she just walked in, while Doggett and Skinner are surprised to see Scully by their side. The Scully replica attacks Landau and morphs into Crane when Doggett and Scully arrive at the crime scene. Meanwhile Praise is dreaming about Mulder and his alien abduction scenario.


Thea Sprecher, Gibson Praise's deaf friend.

Skinner and Scully drive back to the desert to retrieve Praise, after a tense moment of paranoia when Scully thinks Skinner is an Alien Bounty Hunter. They find Praise, with a fever, sitting some distance from the mine. Skinner takes him to the nearest hospital, where his friend Thea visits him, closing the door behind her. In search for Mulder in the desert, Scully sees a bright light in the sky that she thinks is a spaceship of sorts, but it turns out to be a helicopter. The helicopter lands and Doggett insists Scully go with him to the hospital. At the hospital, the two FBI agents assure Doggett that nothing happened to Praise and Skinner, But after checking the hospital room, it is revealed by Doggett and Scully that they have vanished. Scully leaves to search for Praise, while Doggett stays in the room trying to figure out how Skinner and Praise could have left with a locked window and agents outside the room. He then looks at the ceiling.

Alien Bounty Hunter as Skinner throws Scully across the room.

Meanwhile, Skinner calls out to Scully from another room, saying he kept Praise safe. Doggett checks the ceiling space and finds Skinner with his face badly burnt. When Scully goes through the door, she sees Praise shaking his head "no." Skinner throws her to the wall, but Scully grabs her firearm and shoots him in the neck, killing the Bounty Hunter. Doggett and his men arrive and find Scully bruised next to the remains of the Bounty Hunter.

Back at the FBI headquarters, Doggett reports his final findings to a skeptical Kersch. When later visiting a recuperating Scully in the hospital, Doggett tells her he is now assigned to the X-Files. In the meantime, Mulder is still held captive in the spaceship, surrounded by various Alien Bounty Hunters.


Background Information

  • The voice-over spoken by Scully at the start of this episode was originally to have been spoken by Gibson Praise.



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