When some people on a ship are rescued, it is discovered that they are aging and later, dying. Mulder takes it upon himself to investigate the ship, which he believes has been the target of Philadelphia Experiments.



(created by), (teleplay by) | 2 more credits »

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Amazon Video



Episode complete credited cast:
Captain Barclay
Stephen Dimopoulos ...
Claire Riley ...
Dr. Laskos
Robert Metcalfe ...
Dmitry Chepovetsky ...
Lt. Richard Harper


After a US destroyer vanishes for 42 hours, a group of sailors are rescued but all have aged tremendously. All but one quickly dies and the survivor is under guard in a military hospital. Mulder's archive has reports of a number of ships disappearing in the same area just off Norway. He believes it's all related to the Navy's World War II Philadelphia experiments where the government was trying to find a way to make ships invisible to radar. They find the missing ship, the USS Ardent, in the North Sea abandoned and with all of its crew dead but one, the Captain. Both the ship and the Captain are quite old and they seem to have gone through some type of time anomaly. Scully has a scientific explanation for what has happened but they are going to have to solve the mystery quickly as they begin to age rapidly. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis






Release Date:

10 March 1995 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

16 : 9
See  »

Did You Know?


When Scully is writing in the notebook aboard the ship, she mentions Ragnarok. It's the name of the apocalypse created by the old Norse/vikings centuries ago. In it, the sun should be eaten by a giant wolf called Fenrir, and the demons imprisoned by Odin at the dawn of times in a hellish called Muspell should be free, and lead by a demon named Surtur should launch the definitive attack to kill all gods and dead warriors who have inhabited Valhalla, causing the end of days. See more »


When Scully finds the toilet being back flushed, she is seen following the yellow pipe. When the light reflects of her face, it is clear that Gillian Anderson isn't wearing her aged make up. See more »


Dana Scully: I found a children's book of Norse legends. From what I can tell, the pictures show the end of the world - not in a sudden firestorm of damnation as the Bible teaches us, but in a slow covering blanket of snow. First the moon and the stars will be lost in a dense white fog, then the rivers and the lakes and the sea will freeze over. And finally a wolf named Skoll will open his jaws and eat the sun, sending the world into an everlasting night. I think I hear the wolf at the door.
See more »


References Dead Calm (1989) See more »


The X-Files
Written by Mark Snow
Performed by John Beal
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

No character
20 June 2013 | by (Greece) – See all my reviews

This was probably designed as a character-based episode to counter the more ridiculous 'monster' stuff, but oh god, it is as bad as Fearful Symmetry and the one with the sewage monster.

Once more we start with conspiracy, secret experiments and possible alien involvement but veer to a view of Mulder and Scully's mortality; trapped adrift in a ghost ship, inexplicably aging by the minute due to mysterious conditions.

But does it convey anything of substance about either? Oh Scully will stand by Mulder no matter what, but that's nothing new.

Worst of all, the episode sets itself up on whether or not help will arrive on time. Was anyone on their toes, even then? Was Mulder really going to die unceremoniously of rapid age deterioration, halfway through the season?

So this is probably the most useless episode so far. Knowing they will be saved, knowing the alien meteorite is only a mcguffin, I just waited for it to end.

3 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: