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Robert Patrick: Case Closed Part Two

The X-FILES star prepares to seal the file on Chris Carter's beloved show

By MELISSA J. PERENSON     May 14, 2002

Agent John Doggett (Robert Patrick) reacts in the 2-part ninth season season premiere of THE X-FILES.
© 2001 Fox
Robert Patrick was best known as his turn as the lethal robot T-1000 in T2: JUDGMENT DAY before he got the part of Agent Doggett in another popular genre vehicle, THE X-FILES. Now, as Chris Carter's beloved program heads into its last episode, Patrick takes a look back at his time on the show.

Agent Monica Reyes (Annabeth Gish) and John Doggett (Robert Patrick) at the morgue in the 2-part ninth season premiere of THE X-FILES.

The evolution of Doggett's partnership with Agent Monica Reyes (Annabeth Gish) has been a welcomed development, as far as Patrick is concerned. Confides the actor, "They have a growing respect for each other, and I think Doggett's starting to really fall for her. I'm really excited about what Annabeth and I have been doing this year and what we've been able to explore as partners - in friendship and romantically, and from a work ethic point of view. That's been really, really interesting [to play]."

Although the series will end before that potential relationship can be fully explored, the underlying magnetism between Patrick and Gish is seen in such episodes as "4-D," in which Doggett is immobile and confined to a hospital bed. "I really loved the scene where Reyes shaves Doggett," Patrick notes. "I thought that was a really tender moment. She's talking to him, and he's listening, trying to respond."

For Patrick the actor "4-D" actually provided one of the season's greatest challenges. "While we were doing it, it was so hard to lie there because you find yourself wanting to really [do something] but what else can I do to show that I'm a quadriplegic, you know?"

Agent John Doggett (Robert Patrick) reacts in the 2-part ninth season season premiere of THE X-FILES.

Another terrific Doggett showcase this season was the episode "John Doe." "That was a hell of an episode," Patrick raves. "I loved doing that one. That was a Vince Gilligan script, with Michelle MacLaren directing. And Bill Roe really got to do some imaginative cinematography, as far as the way he lit that episode."

One of the more physically challenging sequences to film actually came at the start of the season in the episode "Nothing Important Happened Today." "The water tank stuff could have been really grueling but they actually take great pains to try to make it not a super uncomfortable environment for you," says Patrick. "They really take care of the actors on this show. I can't complain about anything, because I've definitely experienced worse things on other shows or movies."

While some actors might have been intimidated by the prospect of joining a hit series in its eighth season, Patrick was undaunted by the prospect. "I've got to tell you, last year when I got this role and I started, I said [to myself] that my obligation to everybody - including myself - is to go in and do the best work I can. I'm going to make it about the work and I'm really not going to focus on anything else. And I'm really glad I did that. Last season was a very successful season for [X-FILES]; the show had really high ratings and I know that the fans were enjoying the show." Furthermore, he adds, "I was having a ball doing it. Being thrown into the middle of all this was just a fantastic experience."

Gillian Anderson and Robert Patrick on THE X-FILES

Patrick applied the same reasoning to season nine. "That's essentially the way I've kept it this season as well. And everything that happens with the show around me happens. I'm going to go out the way I came in."

The actor's enthusiasm spills out once more as he reflects on what being part of THE X-FILES has meant to him personally. "It's a great show, and it's been a fantastic experience," he says. "I'm very grateful for the opportunity. I think I've had the opportunity to do some really great work, and I'm really proud of it."


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