Here at The Murder Mystery Company we have been tasked with the momentous task of organising the TV Detective World Series - and now it's time for the fifth heat of the first round.
Another week, another battle. This one has been tipped by critics to go the distance, as two icons of television, one daytime and one evening, meet in the theatre of conflict for the first time. Who wins? You decide...
Round One - Size of Torch
Mulder confidently strides to the back of his FBI issue Lexus and pops the trunk. From inside he just manages to pick up a torch so big it doesn't even fit in the main part of the car. Honestly, this thing looks like seven 1990 era mobile phones taped together. He fires it up, and the resulting beam is so powerful it cuts a hole in the wooden wall of the Judges' portakabin, before running out of massive batteries in about three seconds - a confident start from this supernatural sleuth.
Sloan doesn't feel comfortable in this round, and the judges soon see why - he produces a small, thin torch from the front pocket of his white doctor's coat that is about the same size of a pen. He clicks it on and the resulting beam is just pathetic. Sloan tries to explain that it is fit for purpose, and enormous torches can make patients nervous about opening their mouths and saying 'ahhh', but there's no getting around it - a poor opener from the silver-haired detective.
Round Two - Sidekick Arriving Just In time
This is a bone of contention with Mulder and he doesn't mind letting the judges know it - his sidekick, FBI Special Agent Dana Scully, never arrives just in time. In fact she is absolutely brilliant at arriving just after just in time. Whether Mulder has just experienced a UFO taking off, or a Vampire turning to dust in the first rays of sunlight, or the government doing something shifty, Scully is always looking at something else, off at her godson's birthday or unconscious! Mulder has lost track of the times he has turned to Scully saying "See! There's your proof!" only to see Scully over on the other side of the secret research facility wrestling with a vending machine.
A good recovery here from Sloan - after following up on his initial suspicions of a potential murderer, he likes nothing more than to track the killer down in a deserted theatre or disused subway station for a revealing dénouement, safe in the knowledge that when the killer admits his crime and says "and all that remains is to kill you, you meddling doctor of medicine!" Sloan's son, Detective Steve Sloan, will arrive with some other law enforcement professionals to disarm and arrest the villain.
Round Three - Whether or not The Truth Is Out There
Mulder's ears prick up when this round is announced, as the truth being out there are the very words he lives by. But his hope of a strong performance in this round are dashed as the judges demonstrate, via 202 TV episodes and two movies, that the truth is not out there. Mulder's search for the truth is an ever changing web of contradictory conspiracy theories, bright lights in the sky, unreliable narrators and being knocked unconscious.
Sloan finds himself presented with a mysterious web of lies and deceit almost every week, but by the end of the episode has the truth in the form of a confession that is overheard by several members of the police department. Flimsy circumstantial evidence notwithstanding, the sheer fact that murderers are willing to give a full account of their guilt means that Sloan excels in proving the truth is indeed out there.
Round Four - Keeping Track Of Own Family Members
Mulder was hoping not to draw this round, and his frustration is palpable. He launches straight away into a diatribe about how he knows exactly where both of his parents are, thank you very much, and has come to see Scully as family as the years have progressed. But there's an elephant in the room, and the judges have to patiently remind an irate Mulder that it was the mysterious disappearance of his sister when he was young that became the inspiration for his entire detective career. A poor showing in this round.
Sloan, on the other hand, keeps excellent track of his family members. Not only does his son live with him in his Malibu beach house, they work together constantly - despite the fact that one is a doctor and the other a police officer! They don't let that simple fact stop them, and in fact find more and more elaborate ways to spend time with each other. Sloan also has a sister and a brother - and last time he checked, neither of them were abducted by aliens when he was young! A strong, confident performance from Sloan.
So there you have it. Another tough battle, and you tell us who should win. Voting closes Monday 25th June.
In the meantime, why not have a crack at solving your very own murder mystery?
It's Hasselhoff vs Hasselhoff with: