In lieu of the best and worst roundup we wrote each season while rewatching The X-Files’ original run, we’re going to summarize our thoughts on season 10. Here’s what we thought worked, didn’t work and what we hope to see in what seems to be an inevitable season 11.
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Radhika: The six-episode miniseries that was highly anticipated by even the most cynical of X-Philes has drawn to a close and this has us mulling quite a few things over. After solid ratings, a cliffhanger ending and interviews indicating that the show will probably be back in some form, it looks like we’ll get to see more of The X-Files at some point. But is it what we need?
Despite the fact that the revival ultimately left me with mixed feelings, I remain interested in seeing what more the show has to offer. What we received in this mini season was not the show at its highest quality, but it affirmed my belief that as much as I enjoy The X-Files: Fight the Future, The X-Files is best in the medium where it got its start: Television. Continue reading →
“You think it’s power what you’re doing, but it’s not… it’s sickness” — Fox Mulder
Unable to reach Mulder, Scully has to deal with a frightening escalation of medical cases that may be linked to the biological threat of extraterrestrial DNA.
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Max: I wonder — if The X-Files revival might not have gone as well as it has ratings-wise — where the hell that would leave us if this episode was the last we’d see of Mulder and Scully for the foreseeable future. Certainly, we as viewers are left with a doozy of a cliffhanger that portends that the race against time might be all for naught. At the very least, “My Struggle II” improves significantly upon the season premiere, but not without scores of unanswered questions and narrative revelations that still do not quite feel in step with the classic conspiracy mode we all know and love.
Scully is approached by both Skinner and Agent Einstein when Mulder seemingly disappears, called to alarm by a new Tad O’Malley report that the alien threat in the form of mass illness and casualties is upon us. In the midst of all of this, droves of afflicted people begin to arrive at Our Lady of Sorrows hospital, leaving Scully and Einstein racing against the clock to locate and isolate alien DNA in Scully, in order to create a vaccine. Continue reading →
“Dude, I was on fire.” — Fox Mulder
“Dude, you were an embarrassment.” — Walter Skinner
A bombing at a Texas art gallery sends Mulder on a Magical Mystery Tour as he tries to figure out a way to communicate with a terrorist in a vegetative state.
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Radhika: I love The X-Files. I love The X-Files enough to admit when I don’t like an episode — and frankly, I did not like this one. The hot mess I saw on my television screen tonight further confirmed suspicions that many fans have at this point: Chris Carter may have been brilliant enough to come up with a wonderful concept, but he often manages to write his own show into the ground. This episode, penned by the creator himself addresses the subjects of terrorism and religion while trying to incorporate elements of comedy. But while a number of comedic X-Files episodes can be considered some of the series’ best, this episode falls short and instead just leaves you with a terrible overplayed Lumineers song stuck in your head. Continue reading →
“You saw those things in the hall. I made them. I didn’t mean to, but I made them… but the bandaid nose man… I spent a lot of time… what I wanted him to look like, what I wanted him to be, and why I wanted him…” — The Artist
In West Philadephia (born and raised?), a federal employee is the unfortunate victim of a rather gruesome disembowelment, which may be linked to the local homeless population.
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Max: I think I know where this season is going at this point. Much has been made by X-Philes about that shot in the promotional materials where Scully apparently gets a call from William, our favorite freaky alien baby. Well, that shot came up in “Home Again,” tonight’s episode which — despite early speculation — does not return to the lovable Peacock family, but rather to a similarly disgusting creation from writer Glen Morgan. This new monster of the week dovetails with tragic events that cause Scully and Mulder to think about what they have lost to bring them to this moment.
Unfortunately, the case that the dynamic duo are brought in to investigate is one of those that ends up quite anticlimactically, much like in “GenderBender,” with the writers losing steam after painting themselves into a corner. A lot of things get thrown into this episode: gentrification, the plight of the homeless, NIMBY politics, art, creation, and Tibetan Buddhism. Continue reading →
“I haven’t done the blood analysis yet, but it’s probably residue from the prior attack on this victim. And animals don’t shoot blood out of their eyeballs.” — Dana Scully
“Oh no? Well, tell that to the horned lizard, which shoots blood out its eyeballs, Scully. Yes, it’s a defense mechanism. Scientific fact.” — Fox Mulder
“Mulder, the Internet is not good for you.” — Dana Scully
In which our heroes investigate a monster, have deep thoughts about the human condition and most importantly, have fun.
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Radhika: And so far, the revival keeps getting better. This was the much-anticipated Darin Morgan episode, the episode that even the less-than-pleased critics have loved after previewing the first half of this six-episode event. And I loved it too, even if I’m not quite sure it lives up to the ones Morgan wrote during his original run on the series. But this episode definitely had all the zany qualities his installments are known for, comedic elements galore, along with some genuinely insightful, poignant moments that don’t drag you away from the silliness for too long. This is also the episode that feels the most like a love letter to the fans and The X-Files crew, and as a longtime X-Phile, I can really appreciate that (though I imagine some newer viewers must be wondering what the hell they just watched). Continue reading →
“This is dangerous.” — Dana Scully “When has that ever stopped us before.” — Fox Mulder
Our heroes’ first case back on the job involves an apparent suicide at a biotechnology firm. But as always there may be more here than meets the eye.
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Max: It has hit me over the last 24 hours or so just how much television viewing has changed in the past 15 years, a result of technological developments as well as a culture that The X-Files help to bring about. When the program was in its heyday, total strangers came together on an obscure but rising telecommunications platform known as the Internet to discuss and nitpick and ship. Now, that platform is ubiquitous and inside so many devices and appliances. The community of cultural discussion is now mainstream, with gigantic corporations providing the forums with which we gab about these things. Tonight, social media will be talking about “Founder’s Mutation,” an excellent MotW entry that couples Mulder and Scully’s shared history with a pretty freaky case of messing with the laws of nature.
We begin when Dr. Sanjay — an employee of Nugenics Technology — kills himself in a particularly gruesome manner after being the only one to hear a high-pitched sound that seemingly wouldn’t stop. Upon an autopsy of the body (love Scully snapping on the latex), she discovers the words “founder’s mutation” written on his palm. The dynamic duo searches his apartment for clues, which include clinical reports of children with severe genetic deformities. Continue reading →
“This is my life, this is everything. This is everything I believe in.” — Fox Mulder
“You want to believe, you so badly want to believe.” — Dana Scully
“I do believe. I believe that Tad O’Malley is right. This is not an alien conspiracy. It’s a conspiracy of men.” — Fox Mulder
After years away from the FBI and the X-Files, as well as each other, Mulder and Scully are drawn back to their spooky callings when a conservative Internet news anchor reaches out.
Radhika: So here we are — finally discussing the first new episode of The X-Files to hit our televisions (and computers and tablets) since 2002. This is an interesting post for us, as I can still consider this episode part of my “X-Files rewatch” after watching it at New York Comic Con last fall, while it is a completely new experience for Max. We’re happy to be back for this limited engagement, so let’s get the recap and discussion started! (And yes, this means spoilers.) Continue reading →