The X-Files (1993–2018)
8 user 8 critic

Paper Clip 

As a government hit squad closes in on the agents, Mulder searches for clues about his father's involvement in a top secret project.


Rob Bowman


Chris Carter (created by), Chris Carter




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
David Duchovny ... Fox Mulder
Gillian Anderson ... Dana Scully
Mitch Pileggi ... Walter Skinner
Walter Gotell ... Victor Klemper
Melinda McGraw ... Melissa Scully
Sheila Larken ... Margaret Scully
Nicholas Lea ... Alex Krycek
William B. Davis ... Smoking Man
John Neville ... Well-Manicured Man
Tom Braidwood ... Melvin Frohike
Dean Haglund ... Richard 'Ringo' Langly
Bruce Harwood ... John Fitzgerald Byers
Floyd 'Red Crow' Westerman ... Albert Hosteen (as Floyd Red Crow Westerman)
Rebecca Toolan ... Teena Mulder
Don S. Williams ... Elder #1


Mulder returns to Skinner and Scully while the deadly pursuit is still at hand. Led by an old photograph of his father and a group of scientists, he and Scully discover more than they could imagine in an old West Virginia warehouse. The truth, of course, may kill everyone. Written by EJS

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TV-14 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

29 September 1995 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


Dedicated to superfan Mario Mark Kennedy who died in a car accident just prior to Season 3 going on air. See more »


Skinner claims that because of some sort of advanced copy protection, the DAT tape was impossible to copy, or even print a hard-copy from. Yet in the opening episode of this arc ("Anasazi" from season 2), we see Scully providing a hard-copy to a Navaho woman for translation (and how did Albert translate the information in the first place? Surely, even if he had to read it off a computer screen, he would have created a translation that could be copied). See more »


The Cigarette Smoking Man: [on the killing of Scully's sister] This was a mistake. It will be rectified.
Well Manicured Man: By whom? By whom will this be rectified? Your ridiculously ineffectual assassins?
The Cigarette Smoking Man: These men are professionals.
Well Manicured Man: This is not a profession for men who make mistakes. My God; you presume to make us believe that you can simply fix it with enough bullets?
The Cigarette Smoking Man: ...No.
See more »


Referenced in The X-Files Game (1998) See more »


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

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User Reviews

29 June 2013 | by chaos-rampantSee all my reviews

It may be the Anasazi - Blessed Way - Paperclip trifecta is the best X- file run up to this point. The season 1 finale was fine, but the Little Green Men followup was a generic restatement of intentions, not worth the time. Duane Barry and Ascension are the only other contenders, but One Breath is a letdown, hitting against the show's hard limits so far as exploring character. Colony is pure jumping the shark, as ridiculous as a Dolph Lungren film.

But this X-file stretch is fine: it centers on the childlike apprehension of a nefarious conspiracy, stressing hallucinated urges.

Blessed Way is below average, to get this out of the way. The pedantic prolonging of Mulder's re-emerging just grates as useless, the spiritual connection in dreams is unimaginative, and the episode is my new example of worst use of voice-over in a film, previous being the 60s version of The Haunting.

This is much better.. What we learn solidifies earlier notions, chiefly that Mulder's father was among the engineers, that Mulder may have been guided within limits of his revelations, that the engineered project is on a vast scope.

But the best part for me is how the makers of the show imagined the vault where 'secret' archives are hidden. It is literally a dark, abandoned place lined with rows of cabinet files - watching Mulder and Scully run up and down with their flashlights, uncovering barely corners of a portentous masterplan, Mulder's revelation of the departing ship, then being chased and fired at by 'agents' and making that miraculous escape..

It's all so dreamy in a childlike way, a scenario a son whose father is doing important business for the government, whose sister has disappeared, would imagine around him.

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