Since the dawn of cinema, serial killers have piqued people’s interest. Numerous ideas, films, and television shows have attempted to delve into the minds and deeds of these demons in human bodies.
The X Files attempted to achieve something similar, but with a twist. We all know that our human capacities limit us, thus human serial killers operate in the same way that we do with our bodies and minds. Thankfully, fictional serial killers are not constrained by such constraints, and as we all know, when the rules are broken, the fun begins.
In one of the best science fiction television programs in network TV history, FBI special agents investigate mysterious, mind-bending incidents known as “X-Files” Despite the fact that the government believes the weird stories are false, conspiracy theorist Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and skeptic Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) go to considerable measures to prove that “the truth is out there.” The show’s creator, Chris Carter, is also an executive producer on this thrilling pop-culture phenomenon.
Tooms: A Limb-Lengthening Serial Killer
The episode begins as Doctor Aaron Monte examines his patient, a man named Eugene Victor Tooms, on the night of his commitment evaluation at Druid Hill Sanitorium in Baltimore, MD.
He tells him that he has reviewed the testimonies of the physicians who would be witnesses the next day and that the chances of him being released are pretty favorable. Monte had stopped his patient as he was twisting his physique to stretch through the feeding slot, ready to open his door, unbeknownst to the doctor. Tooms was Walter Skinner’s debut appearance.
The scene changes to Dana Scully as she visits her seldom seen supervisor, Assistant Director Walter Skinner, at the FBI headquarters. As a Smoking Man mysteriously hovers in the shadows, Skinner expects more definitive findings from Scully and textbook methods; their high conviction rate of 75%, he claims, is the sole thing that’s keeping the X-Files department going. The persona of the Cigarette Smoking Man was inspired by author E. Howard Hunt and William B. Davis drew inspiration for his portrayal from Adolf Hitler and Saddam Hussein.
Dr. Pamela Karetzky confirms during the trial that Tooms demonstrated no evidence of physiological impairment. Another analyst believes Tooms’ assault on Scully was motivated by misguided rage about being let go from his job and for being wrongly jailed by the FBI. Judge Kann denies Special Agent Fox Mulder’s mutation hypothesis, despite his evidence proving that Tooms’ prints were found at seven crime locations dating back to 1903.
The Judge remarks that Tooms does not appear to be a hundred years old. Fox Mulder then alienates the jury by claiming that Tooms is a physical freak who will surely kill more if unleashed since he failed to obtain the last of his regular five livers before hibernating for the last thirty years.
Tooms is cleared for release as long as he stays under Monte’s supervision, resumes his animal control position, and lives with halfway-house pair Arlan and Susan Green. Mulder pledges to keep an eye on Tooms twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week and assigns Scully research through the earlier killings for evidence. When she claims this would necessitate unconventional techniques, he nearly accuses her of being intimidated by Skinner’s admonition. Tooms sneers at Mulder as he walks out of the courthouse.
Scully gets assistance from retired investigator Frank Briggs, the investigator of Tooms’ last two murdering marathons, and is shocked to learn of his emancipation at Lynne Acres Retirement Home. He shows her a container holding a liver he discovered during the building of Powhattan Mill’s Ruxton Chemical Plant in 1933; the corpse was never located, which was not the case with all of the other killings Tooms was accused of committing.
Briggs believes the corpse was dropped into the chemical plant’s cement foundation while it was still drying, maybe because anything on it could incriminate Tooms. When traditional means of looking for the foundation proved too sluggish, Briggs relies on “an old-fashioned hunch” as he directs the exhumation crew to a specific location, where they unearth human remains.
Back on his job at the Baltimore Animal Regulation, Tooms grows hungry, nibbling on dead animals as he collects roadkill up and bags it. He proceeds to go near a lady on the road in plain sight when he is intercepted by Mulder, who requests assistance in finding his dog in a sarcastic tone. Tooms flees in a fury.
That evening, he trails a businessman but waits in his car while Mulder keeps a close eye on him. Mulder falls asleep for a few hours, and when he wakes up, he discovers Tooms’ vehicle vacant and begins searching the area, not aware Tooms had entered the drains through the sewer grate under his exhaust.
After being stopped by the businessman’s missus, who believes there is a blockage and using a pipe snake, forces him out, and he enters through a closed casement; Mulder, poking around the area, notices wastewater from the gutters on a window ledge and informs the owner that he suspects a trespasser inside. While this causes Tooms to flee, Mulder loses sight of him.
A professor examines the bones recovered by Briggs and Scully at the Forensic Anthropology Lab at the Smithsonian Institute and learns that the skull corresponds with a picture of a missing person believed to be a victim in 1933. Strange bite marks can also be found near the victim’s ribcage.
However, it is insufficient to condemn Tooms. Scully is concerned about Mulder, as has he been on his own for three days. She offers to take over monitoring in her vehicle. Mulder accepts and drives away, as Tooms secretly hides in his car.
Mulder falls asleep on his sofa while watching the Vincent Price film, ‘The Fly’ as Tooms enters via a floor vent, but instead of murdering Mulder, he scrapes himself in the face till he bleeds.
The following day, an investigator informs a doctor at a hospital that cops discovered Tooms motionless in the streets, assaulted and kicked. Mulder, according to Tooms, did it. While speaking with Mulder in his flat, detectives find a sports shoe that matches the mark on Tooms’ face. Mulder discovers a screw below – from the floor vent – as they arrange to bring him in for interrogation.
Mulder observes at Skinner’s office, as the Smoking Man looks on, that forensic evidence proves that there was no foot in the shoe when it collided with Tooms’ face and that Tooms is devising against him. Scully lies and says she and Mulder were surveilling together when Tooms was brought to the hospital.
Skinner displays an appreciation for Mulder’s abilities after dispatching Scully but advises him that if any stress is causing him or anyone else to act up, he should go on vacation, which Mulder only half-heartedly agrees with.
Skinner urges Mulder to keep away from Tooms, emphasizing that this was a close shave and that if it occurs again, even Mulder’s Congressional ties will not be able to save his job. This episode is notable for the conversation in the car, called TCotC, in which fans read the subtext as Scully expressing her love to Mulder. As a result, in the fandom, iced tea is linked with love.
With dental records, the Smithsonian and Scully have conclusively determined that the teeth marks on the human remains are Tooms, and that is all the evidence they require. The Greens are about to leave Tooms’ halfway home when Monte goes to check on him. While Monte is making conversation, Tooms’ hunger takes over, and he strikes. Scully and Mulder soon arrive and discover the doctor’s body. Mulder realizes that Tooms will hibernate as he had now killed his fifth victim.
The detectives proceed to 66 Exeter Street, where Tooms’ old flat is, but find the building demolished, and City Square, a shopping area, built there. Mulder goes into a tight utility channel beneath the bottom of an escalator. He forces his way through a duct into a grotto-like chamber, where he discovers proof of Tooms’ nesting habits – a mountain of newspapers bound together by bile. Tooms, nude and animalistic, rip through the newspapers and strike.
Mulder flees with Scully’s assistance and turns the escalator on, dragging Tooms into a terrible, shattering demise within the escalator systems. Interestingly, the bile-like fluid that coated Tooms and his nest was yellow piping gel that adhered to the staff members’ bodies and pulled out hair when removed.
After reading Scully’s unconventional report, Skinner asks the Smoking Man whether he believes it. “Of course, I do,” he says confidently. Outside, Mulder notices a cocoon on a tree and informs Scully that he believes The X Files are about to undergo a transformation. Mulder’s penultimate scene, in which he states he senses something is going to change, is an ominous foreshadowing of what is to come.
The X Files: Squeeze
“Squeeze” is episode 3 of season one of the iconic American science fiction program, The X-Files. On September 24, 1993, it debuted on the Fox TV network. This episode was Tooms’ first appearance in the series.
Tooms murdered five people in 1933; two of them were killed at Powhattan Mill, although he accidentally left fingerprints at three of the five places where he committed each crime. Tooms killed two people with the surname Walters and one with the surname Taylor between 1903 and 1963. Tooms would remove a tiny personal object from each corpse, such as a coffee cup from Taylor and a brush from Walters; the victims’ families reported the missing minor personal things in each case, which Frank Briggs discovered. Although the eleven murders remained unexplained, their data and material were documented in an X-File.
Tooms was found going up an air vent in a place where he had murdered one of his prior three victims on July 23, that year, by Agent Scully. He was thereafter detained and transported to the FBI Bureau, Baltimore, where he was subjected to a polygraph exam. Despite being given questions that may have indicated that the FBI was aware of his unusual age and attendance at Powhattan Mill in 1933, Tooms responded to each one as if he were innocent.
His replies did not tip his interviewer to the fact that he was lying. Tooms also attempts to eat Scully’s liver by following her to her house and entering it through the air vent, but he is topped in the nick of time by Mulder, who finds Scully’s necklace in Tooms’ collection of stolen personal items.
Tooms was sent to a secure psychiatric facility for his assault on Scully because there was inadequate evidence to link him to any of his past killings. His capture was published in a story headlined “Suspect Caught in Serial Killings” in the Section Two newspaper. Tooms proceeded to make another nest in his cell, using a copy of the article published about him in Section Two, among other shreds of newspaper.
Eugene Victor Tooms
Eugene Victor Tooms was a genetically mutant serial murderer who could squeeze his body through tight openings due to his unusual muscle and bone architecture, allowing considerable elongation and twisting of his body. He also possessed a very low metabolic rate, which allowed him to hibernate for thirty years at a stretch. Tooms would feed on human livers in between these times of hibernation, generally five livers at a time, by murdering random civilians and taking the liver from each corpse with their own hands. Tooms usually hibernated in the same place, in a nest composed of newspaper strips bonded firmly with their saliva.
Tooms was born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1873. He was a college student at one time in his life. Tooms’ information was documented in the Baltimore County Census in 1903, where he was claimed to be residing in a flat at 66 Exeter Street. By 1993, he had made a home in an abandoned coal bunker, which housed his nest and various personal goods acquired from his victims. Tooms also murdered Edwardo Jeffers, the inhabitant of an apartment above the one he was allegedly residing in, in 1903. At the time, Tooms was hired by Baltimore Animal Regulations as a dog catcher.
Why should you watch The X Files – Eugene Victor Tooms?
Although conventional wisdom maintains that “Squeeze” is a classic and “Tooms” is just a satisfying sequel, most people think “Tooms” to be equally as fun, if not significantly better than “Squeeze.”
Tooms is an excellent villain, terrifying and compelling, owing mainly to Doug Hutchinson’s outstanding performance, and he is used well here, with the mythology behind the character being developed further in this script by James Wong and Glen Morgan. Furthermore, the screenplay has some funny, original, and very humorous exchanges between Mulder and Scully, and CSM actually says something, which is unusual at this stage in the series.
After Mulder and Scully, the episode also introduces AD Skinner, portrayed by Mitch Pileggi, virtually everyone’s third favorite character after Mulder and Scully. “Tooms” is a fitting successor to “Squeeze.” It’s creepy, humorous, fun, and has a wonderful ending.