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Millennium – In Arcadio Ego (Review)

This May and June, we’re taking a trip back in time to review the fifth season of The X-Files and the second season of Millennium.

A relatively recent study of teenage pregnancies accounted for forty-five virgin births in the United States, based on data from 1995, 2008 and 2009. Extrapolating from this data, the researchers estimate that almost 1% of births in the United States could be considered virgin births.

Of course, the researchers suggest a notable correlation between these self-described virgin births and other interesting social factors – virgin mothers are statistically quite likely to have low levels of sex education and are quite likely to have taken chastity vows. The myth of a virgin birth is powerful, and it is easy to understand in the context of contemporary attitudes about sex and sexuality that almost one in every hundred pregnant teenagers would rather claim a virgin birth than admit that they had sexual intercourse.

And Frank's left holding the baby...

And Frank’s left holding the baby…

In Arcadia Ego is not a particularly subtle script. Writer Chip Johannessen is quite candid about how he feels about all of this, telling a story about a modern-day immaculate conception featuring two escaped prisoners just looking for a reprieve from all the abuse and violence that they have encountered. In Arcadia Ego is a very socially-conscious piece of work, a rather pointed episode that pokes and prods at some the hypocrisies and inconsistencies in how we talk about sex and women in contemporary society. It is never too hard to tell how Johannessen feels on the matter.

At the same time, In Arcadia Ego is also a thoughtful and moving story about love, hope and faith. After a stretch of episodes that have seen Frank becoming more and more uncertain, In Arcadia Ego casts Frank as a pillar of moral certitude. While it might be a little clumsy in places, In Arcadia Ego is never less than well-intentioned.

Bloody murder...

Bloody murder…

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