Not that this is a bad move. You don't want to go out and reinvent a wheel when that wheel moved a multi-million-dollar franchise. You want to make sure you bring back the fanbase who loved the classics, and you want to inform the newer viewers tuning in wondering what the fuss is about.
On the other hand, these replays have to be done with a ton of finesse. You can't just mash together thematic elements or plot ideas and hope for the best. You want at least something with an obvious artistic flourish by the writer/director of a particular episode to make it work.
So far, the episode that's worked best - Darin Morgan's Mulder and Scully Meet
That said, here we have Home Again, which has all the classic signs of a monster serial killer plot, and... and... incredible amounts of character angst. You've been warned, this is a SPOILER-ish type of episode.
Senseless 'Shipper Survey - Home Again
1) The episode opens on a dark city street. A man with all the bearing of a government bureaucrat is ordering a set of fire hoses upon a street alley of homeless people, in an attempt to drive them out of that alley and into a nearby "shelter" so they can convert that property into a posh high-rise. Later that night, the bureaucrat checks in at work, in a darkened office without any other employees around, and with the security cameras unprotected by any supernatural power to knock them off their mounts. Yeah, you know that can mean only one thing: this guy is dead meat in 5... 4... 3... 2... (rrrrriipppppp). Yeah, you also know:
A) If anyone's thinking this is gonna be a sequel to that one nasty episode, it doesn't look that way. I mean, this is a nasty episode all by itself, but that can't be one of the Peacock boys...
B) That is NOT how you disarm someone. ...Yeah, I went there.
C) This Monster of the Week isn't leaving any body behind for Dana and Fox to flirt over during the autopsy!
2) The locals are notably freaked out. But never fear! Two FBI agents show up! You're certain they'll answer to:
A) Moose and Squirrel!
B) Frank and Earnest!
C) Mr. and Mrs. Mulder-Scully!
3) In the middle of checking out the crime scene - where the bloody footprints can't be real because "there are no ridges", and where a spooky street art outside the window looks like the murder suspect - Scully receives a call from William... her son?... no, it's William Junior, her older jerkass brother from Seasons 4 through 9. There's an emergency in the family: something happened to Dana's mom. When she tries to explain the situation to Mulder, he immediately tells her to go. When he does that, you go:
A) "Awwww, the Punk cares!"
B) "Awwww, he cares!"
C) "HE'S DOING RIGHT BY YOU, DANA. MARRY FOX!"
4) Dana rushes to the hospital to find her mother - look, kids! Mrs. Scully! (applause) - at death's door. The elder woman is wrapped up in tubes and wires and machines that go ping when there's stuff. She's suffering the after-effects of a heart attack and may not last long. Your response is:
A) NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO NOT MRS. SCULLY
C) NOT YET, NOT YET, FOX NEEDS TO MARRY DANA BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE SO MRS. SCULLY CAN DIE HAPPY... /cries
Note: yes, the actress' name is Sheila Larken, but she'll always be Mrs. Scully to me.
5) Mulder is busy getting evidence that the murder victim was part of a move to clear out the homeless to a shelter, and runs into two pretty unlikable characters who have neon signs over their heads saying "Jerkass Victim Two" and "Jerkass Victim Three." A nearby homeless man warns Mulder about the Trashman, which the agent realizes might be that street art on the billboard overhead. Only to see that the billboard art has vanished. You take this all in and note:
A) see B)
B) see C)
C) WHO CARES ABOUT THIS SH-T?! MRS. SCULLY IS DYING! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooo.
6) It turns out the billboard art got swiped by two vandals who are hoping to sell the art as their own, as soon as they "clean" it up and remove the original artist's signature from it. But as the vandals meet their grisly gruesome demise, we see that the signature for Trashman won't easily go away. You realize:
A) The Trashman killer better respect the forensics crime lab people who are just there to do their jobs and not get killed if there's any cleaning involved!
B) At least this is one killer who signs his work.
C) THAT WE NEED TO DEAL MORE WITH DANA LOSING MRS. SCULLY! NOOOOOOOooooooo.
7) At some point, Mulder can't do much more for the investigation so he calls Scully. Scully answers her phone and he says "I'm here," and she looks up to see Mulder outside the Critical Care ward with a compassionate look on his face. Your reaction is:
A) "Okay, so the Punk's not being a punk right now. We're cool."
B) "You get the feeling this isn't going to be much of a monster hunt episode, is it?"
C) "He's here, Fox cares, it's all because Mrs. Scully has always been the nicest, sanest parental figure in the entire show and always baked cookies for Fox, and he's nice enough to let Mrs. Scully call him Fox because he knows she means well and... and... oh no, I'm getting all crying again..." /weeps
8) There's a sizable amount of emotional angst as Scully tries to cope with the loss of her mother, and confused as to why her mom changed the conditions of her living will without her knowing. As Mrs. Scully stirs awake for what may be the last time, Dana's mom smiles at her, then notices Fox nearby and touches his face. "My son is named William, too," Mrs. Scully says before fading away. You:
A) CRY YOUR DAMN HEART OUT.
B) Yeah, going to the waterworks meself right now OH GOD NO WHHHHYYYYYYYY? /weeping
C) (Die from the overwhelming emotional pain)
9) Oh, there's been a few more deaths, and Mulder and Scully get a lead that brings them to an underground artist who's literally hiding underground from his own monster, and it turns out that Trashman is a political protest come to life in the form of a Tulpa, an avatar of the mind, and that Trashman is targeting anyone who's attacking the homeless people, which means there's one more victim left for Mulder and Scully to save. As they race to the homeless shelter where the last bureaucrat is foolishly walking down a darkened hallway, you realize:
A) They're never gonna save anybody like this! You'd think after nine plus seasons that Mulder and Scully would figure out the smart move is to round up every secondary character appearing in the first ten minutes of the episode and put them all under protective custody! I mean, SHEESH!
B) A Tulpa?! They're fighting a Tulpa?! DUDES! THAT WAS FROM THE SUBURBAN HELL EPISODE "ARCADIA" FROM SEASON, wassis, SIX! DAMMIT! WE'VE BEEN HERE! Talk about recycling a plot! /headdesk
C) The biggest problem with this episode? Not enough Dana and Fox flirting over autopsies! But then again, sniff, I mean, Dana's been distracted and... and... sniff... WAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!
10) The episode ends with the artist fleeing the city, with evidence that he's removed the Trashman art and replaced them all with smiley faces. Mulder and Scully sit on a log along the shores of Vancouver, uh Maryland, where Scully tries to come to terms with how her mother passed on, and what she was trying to tell her daughter with the decisions she made. As the episode ends with both Mulder and Scully regretting giving up their son for adoption, you:
A) CRY YOUR DAMN EYES OUT SOME MORE
B) Bemoan the fact that this Monster of the Week episode couldn't make up its mind, and felt like two separate stories shoe-horned into each other to get it to a fifty-three minute length (with room for commercial time).
C) CRY YOUR DAMN 'SHIPPER EYES BECAUSE MRS. SCULLY NEVER GOT TO SEE DANA AND FOX GET MARRIED NOOOOOOOOOOO...
If you answered:
A) You're an OBSSE fan of Agent Scully who needs to cry some more.
B) You need to read more horror stories, try the horror anthologies published by Mystery& Horror LLC like Strangely Funny and... and... whadda mean, I'm not allowed to shill?
C) You're a 'Shipper who really really REALLY needs to cry your eyes out.
Next up: There is no damn way I am 'Shipping "Babylon," so I might as well skip to "My Struggle Part II"