LOS ANGELES COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT
Deputy Keith Wetzel cruises the streets, but he’s not alone in his patrol car — a camera crew from the television show “Cops” follows his every move. He responds to a call about a possible “monster” prowler. Wetzel finds huge scrapes on the front door of the house, and a quick search corners the suspect in the backyard. As Wetzel advances toward the perpetrator, something startles him. He bolts back toward the squad car, shrieking in terror. The frightened camera crew follows. As Wetzel frantically radios for assistance, an unseen force attacks the police car and flips it completely over. The terrified occupants scream.
Backup arrives in the form of Sergeant Paula Duthie. She is astounded by the upside-down vehicle and questions Wetzel about the incident. Although the camera crew is no help in confirming his story, Wetzel lies to his superior, telling her that a street gang was responsible for the wreck. They are interrupted by the radio squawking with a report of two armed suspects fleeing on foot. The officers on the scene rush to apprehend a very surprised pair of FBI agents investigating the same “monster”: Mulder and Scully.
Mulder asks Wetzel to describe what it was that attacked him. Although Wetzel attempts to downplay the incident, Mulder believes that they are really chasing a werewolf. He speculates that the bite marks on Wetzel’s wrists may indicate that he will soon become a werewolf himself. When Mulder suggests that the deputy be quarantined, Sgt. Duthie skeptically asks, “Could I see your badge again?”
Scully tries to avoid the camera crew when discussing the case, but Mulder is giddy with the prospect of solving an X-file under the watchful eyes of a worldwide audience. She is merely trying to keep herself and her partner from looking ridiculous in a werewolf hunt. Police sketch artist Ricky draws the attacker described by a resident. The perpetrator seems to closely resemble horror movie character Freddy Krueger. Although Ricky begins to fear the “claw monster” that the woman described, Mulder is no longer certain that the werewolf theory still stands. Scully confirms this by reporting that the marks on Wetzel’s wrists are merely insect bites.
The police radio reports another attack nearby, and the team runs to the scene. Ricky’s body lays dead, savagely clawed through his protective Kevlar vest with five parallel slashes. Scully combs the crime area and uncovers a long, fake fingernail, painted bubblegum pink and covered in blood. The agents interview Steve and Edy, a colorful couple who heard Ricky’s cries and called 911. They recognize the nail polish on the fake fingernail as the signature hair and nail color of local prostitute Chantara Gomez.
The agents search for Chantara. Mulder drives and addresses the camera, cheerfully updating the audience on the case. Scully, still ignoring the camera crew, easily spots the prostitute’s pink hair. Chantara confesses that it was not Freddy Krueger but her boyfriend, Chuco, who killed Ricky. She is afraid that Chuco will twist her neck when he learns that she ratted on him. The police raid Chuco’s house and find that he has overdosed. Dead for several days, Chuco is ruled out as a suspect. Suddenly, gunshots blast outside. Dep. Wetzel is blindly firing at an invisible assailant. Although he was assigned to protect Chantara, she was somehow killed in the locked squad car. Her neck was snapped. Wetzel describes to Mulder a childhood story about a monster with a head like a wasp. He says that what he shot at was the same Wasp Man.
Mulder switches theories about the nature of the case. He now believes that the suspect is really a single entity that, when it attacks, appears as the victim’s worst nightmare. It appears at a full moon and feeds on fear, jumping to various sources like a chain reaction. Scully still does not buy his claims, but returns with him to the home of Steve and Edy. They are the only people to not fall prey to this killer. But after talking with Steve and Edy, it becomes clear that the couple does not fear their neighborhood or any killer on the loose. Mulder decides that they are not in any danger. He heads off with Wetzel to scour the streets, and Scully goes to the morgue to examine Chantara’s body.
Much to Scully’s chagrin, half the camera crew has followed her, but she works earnestly to find any clues before sunrise. The nervous medical examiner assisting her has heard that some kind of contagion killed the prostitute. Scully assures her that the victim was murdered and not exposed to the Hantavirus. As the assistant asks more questions about the Hantavirus, she sneezes blood and faints. She convulses on the floor, exhibiting symptoms of Hantavirus. Scully yells at the camera crew to call 911.
At the morgue, Mulder assimilates this latest incident into his theory, realizing that the Hantavirus only affected the examiner after she began fearing it. Mulder suddenly realizes that Deputy Wetzel, who was not afraid while Mulder was with him, is now on his own again and at risk of another attack. Wetzel, meanwhile, has returned to the previously raided house with the camera crew. He is determined to search it one more time. Unfortunately for Wetzel, his fears begin to overwhelm him and he is locked inside the house with the cameras. Mulder and Scully arrive quickly and break down the door. Behind a locked closet, Wetzel screams in pain. Mulder yells at him to “cowboy up” and not show any fear. Suddenly, the screaming stops, and Mulder breaks in to find an injured Wetzel sitting dazed on the floor, cradling his bloody arm. Mulder realizes that the sun has risen, meaning that the terror is gone. With no concrete proof to back up Mulder’s theories, one question hangs over the case: is the entity gone for good, or only to return at the next full moon?
THE X-FILES “X-COPS”
Original Air Date: 02/20/00
Written by Vince Gilligan
Directed by Michael Watkins
DAVID DUCHOVNY as Special Agent Fox Mulder
GILLIAN ANDERSON as Special Agent Dana Scully
Judson Mills as Deputy Keith Wetzel
Dee Freeman as Sgt. Paula Duthie
Michael Maher as Redhead Deputy
Perla Walter as Mexican Lady
J.W. Smith as Steve
Curtis C. as Edy
Tara Karsian as Coroner’s Assistant
Lombardo Boyar as Spanish Speaking Deputy
Maria Celedonio as Chantara Gomez
John Michael Vaughn as Soundman
Daniel Emmett as Cameraman
Frankie Ray as Crackhead
Solomon Eversol as Sketch Artist Ricky
Cheryl Comstock as Sheriff #1
Ron Gilbert as Sheriff #2
Diane Harris as Sheriff #3
Boris Nikolof as Sheriff #4
Scott Arger as Sheriff #5
Kevin Beggs as Sheriff #6
Esther Myare as Sheriff #7
Steve Sciacca as Sheriff #8
Mary Campbell as Sheriff #9