The Lone Gunmen (TV series)
|The Lone Gunmen|
|Created by||Chris Carter
|Country of origin||United States and Canada|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||13 (List of episodes)|
|Running time||43 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Millennium Canadian Productions Ltd.
Ten Thirteen Productions
20th Century Fox Television
|Original run||March 4 – June 1, 2001|
|Related shows||The X-Files
The Lone Gunmen is an American thriller dramatic television series created by Chris Carter and broadcast on Fox. It was a spin-off of Carter's science fiction television series The X-Files and a part of The X-Files franchise, starring several of the show's characters. The Lone Gunmen was first broadcast in March 2001 and, despite positive reviews, its ratings dropped. The program was canceled after thirteen episodes. The last episode was broadcast in June 2001 and ended on a cliffhanger which was partially resolved in a ninth-season episode of The X-Files entitled "Jump the Shark".
The series revolved around the three characters of The Lone Gunmen: Melvin Frohike, John Fitzgerald Byers, and Richard Langly, a group of "geeky" investigators who ran a conspiracy theory magazine. They had often helped FBI Special Agent Fox Mulder on The X-Files.
Unlike The X-Files, whose storylines dealt mainly with supernatural creatures and government alien conspiracies, episodes of The Lone Gunmen generally featured more "plausible" plots, such as government sponsored terrorism, the creeping government-induced police state surveillance society, cheating husbands, corporate crime, arms-dealers, and escaped Nazis. The show had a light atmosphere and focused heavily on physical comedy. The trio were often aided (and sometimes hindered) by a mysterious thief named Yves Adele Harlow (Zuleikha Robinson).
The plot of the first episode, which aired March 4, 2001, involves a US government conspiracy to hijack an airliner, fly it into the World Trade Center and blame it on terrorists, thereby gaining support for a new profit-making war.
Parallels of this plotted scenario of government conspiracy to revitalize its war industry, to the events of 9/11 in this episode are noteworthy, if not uncanny, since the episode was aired six months prior to 9/11.
September 11 parallel
The pilot episode depicted a plane being flown into the New York World Trade Center; it originally aired six months before 9/11. Foreshadowing a number of conspiracy theories which would arise in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks, the plot of the March 4, 2001 episode depicts a secret faction within the US government plotting to hijack a Boeing 727 and fly it into the World Trade Center by remote control. The stated motive was to increase the military defense budget by blaming the attack on foreign interests. In the episode, the plot is foiled by the protagonists, who board the doomed plane and deactivate the malicious autopilot system just seconds before the plane would have reached the World Trade Center.
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Production
|1||"Pilot"||Rob Bowman||Chris Carter & Vince Gilligan & John Shiban & Frank Spotnitz||March 4, 2001||1AEB79||13.23|
|While The Lone Gunmen are thwarted in their attempt to steal a computer chip by Yves Adele Harlow, John Fitzgerald Byers receives news of his father's death and the trio soon find themselves unravelling a government conspiracy in which an attempt to fly a commercial aircraft into the Twin Towers which would result in increased arms sales for the United States.|
|2||"Bond, Jimmy Bond"||Bryan Spicer||Vince Gilligan & John Shiban & Frank Spotnitz||March 11, 2001||1AEB01||9.0|
|While searching for the killer of an infamous hacker, the three Lone Gunmen find a fourth member when they stumble upon a practice of a football team for the blind.|
|3||"Eine Kleine Frohike"||David Jackson||John Shiban||March 16, 2001||1AEB02||5.4|
|With help from Yves, Melvin Frohike attempts to convince a woman suspected of being a Nazi war criminal that he is her long-lost son - and survive to talk about it.|
|4||"Like Water for Octane"||Richard Compton||Collin Friesen||March 18, 2001||1AEB03||
|While searching for a water-powered car, the Gunmen encounter missile silos, rude government clerks, and cows.|
|5||"Three Men and a Smoking Diaper"||Bryan Spicer||Chris Carter||March 23, 2001||1AEB04||
|The Lone Gunmen turn into babysitters while working to expose the truth behind a murder linked to a Senator seeking re-election.|
|6||"Madam, I'm Adam"||Bryan Spicer||Thomas Schnauz||March 30, 2001||1AEB05||
|A man contacts The Lone Gunmen, believing his life has been stolen after being abducted by aliens. They end up getting caught in a love triangle involving a one-eyed stereo salesman, brainwashing, and a wrestling dwarf.|
|7||"Planet of the Frohikes"||John T. Kretchmer||Vince Gilligan||April 6, 2001||1AEB06||
|The Lone Gunmen receive an email from an ingenious chimp, a self-named Simon White-Thatch Potentloins, attempting to escape a government laboratory.|
|8||"Maximum Byers"||Vincent Misiano||Vince Gilligan & Frank Spotnitz||April 13, 2001||1AEB07||
|At the behest of a man's mother, Byers and Jimmy Bond pose as prisoners on Death Row in a Texas penitentiary to prove the man's innocence.|
|9||"Diagnosis: Jimmy"||Bryan Spicer||John Shiban||April 20, 2001||1AEB08||
|While recovering in a hospital, Jimmy begins to suspect that his doctor is a wanted killer. Meanwhile, the Gunmen attempt to stop a man who kills grizzly bears to sell their gallbladders.|
|10||"Tango de los Pistoleros"||Bryan Spicer||Thomas Schnauz||April 27, 2001||1AEB09||
|Yves and Frohike go undercover as tango dancers to stop a man from selling government secrets.|
|11||"The Lying Game"||Richard Compton||Nandi Bowe||May 4, 2001||1AEB10||
|While investigating the death of Byers' college roommate, The Lone Gunmen find evidence implicating FBI Assistant Director Walter Skinner.|
|13||"All About Yves"||Bryan Spicer||Vince Gilligan & John Shiban & Frank Spotnitz||May 11, 2001||1AEB12||
|The Lone Gunmen team up with Man in Black agent Morris Fletcher to find Yves. What they uncover is Romeo-61, a secret government organization responsible for decades of major incidents.|
|12||"The Cap'n Toby Show"||Carol Banker||Vince Gilligan & John Shiban & Frank Spotnitz||June 1, 2001||1AEB11||
|The Lone Gunmen try to solve the murders of two FBI agents who were working undercover on Richard Langly's favorite TV show.|
"Jump the Shark" (2002) (The X-Files episode)
|No.||#||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Production
|197||9.15||"Jump the Shark"||Cliff Bole||Vince Gilligan & John Shiban & Frank Spotnitz||April 21, 2002||9ABX15|
|When Morris Fletcher approaches agents Scully, Dogget, and Reyes with information related to the super soldiers, they turn to the Lone Gunmen. But the Gunmen and Jimmy are already knee-deep in a bio-terrorist’s plot to release a deadly toxin, and his links to the mysterious Yves Adele Harlow.|
Fox Home Entertainment officially released the series (along with the episode of The X-Files titled "Jump the Shark" which finishes the cliffhanger that ended The Lone Gunmen as an additional episode) on a three-disc Region 1 DVD set on Tuesday March 29, 2005. In the UK, it was released on January 31, 2006.
- The Lone Gunmen at the Internet Movie Database
- Perenson, Melissa J. "Three Men and a conspiracy seek the truth solo in The Lone Gunmen". Sci Fi Channel. Archived from the original on June 3, 2004.
- Perenson, Melissa J. "Chris Carter taught us to trust no one, but wants us to trust The Lone Gunmen". Sci Fi Channel. Archived from the original on June 3, 2004.