I typically get two questions when I reveal that I’ve never seen The X-Files.
The first is, “Whaaaaaaat?”
The second is, “How did that happen?”
There are a few simple reasons why I hadn’t seen it. For one thing, I wasn’t raised on science fiction, so it was not go to viewing in my home. Another reason is that my family had a very firm rule about not watching television shows with “curse words”, which also contributed to why I didn’t watch The Simpsons. More importantly, even if the previous two weren’t the case, I was told the show was “freaky” and “creepy” according to everyone who had watched it. I am not a fan of either creepy or freaky. Those both translate into “scary” and “horror”, and I’m sorry but I prefer sleeping at night without fear something will come for me in the darkness of what should be my safe room. No, sir!
Then last year, it was announced that The X-Files would be revived for a mini-series airing January of 2016. That’s this month people.
So I decided to face my fears and watch The X-Files. However, the show has a whole bunch of episodes that I didn’t have time to watch, even when I made the decision to sit down and watch it. Then my Supplemental co-host Sue pointed me to this link from Entertainment Weekly, in which showrunner and show creator Chris Carter lists the top ten essential X-Files episodes.
To dip my toe in the water, I started with the first two mentioned on the list. Coincidentally, they were the first two episodes of the series. Good job, Chris Carter.
Oh, just in case possible spoilers.
Your typical pilot: character introduction, exposition of what the series is, and possible alien abductions and murders that may or may not involve a comatose man. What I took away from this episode was my transition from not understanding why people ship Mulder and Scully to becoming one of the sailors on the ship. The chemistry and performances of baby Duchovny and Anderson is a thing of magic. They are complete opposites, but they complement each other in a way that the viewer falls in love with their partnership (if not sexual tension) immediately. As for the plot of the episode? Meh. The story didn’t strike me as interesting, but I’ve never been a big “monster of the week, reset” format. I know for a fact that my biggest pet peeve is going to be Scully constantly saying “there’s no scientific proof of aliens” even when there’s freaking alien right there! Mind you, I don’t know if that’s truly the case. But if I remember my mid-1990’s TV format correctly, the execs at that time were very intent on being able to show any episode out of order. Which means the comedic bit by Eddie Izzard about the show will be playing in my head while I continue watching.
But Sculder? Big heart-eyes. (Is the ship name Sculder? Muldy? I don’t have the inclination to Google search anything as I’m writing this post.)
Nothing says “second episode” like a man wearing nothing but tighty-whities covered in hives and shaking like a leaf in the corner of the room! This is the one about experimental military aircrafts utilizing alien technology. Which means government conspiracies. I wasn’t in love with the episode as I was watching it, but upon retrospection I like it more and more. I particularly liked Mulder in action, paying for a limited print of a UFO for information, shooting the bull with baby Seth Green, and his reaction at the end. Wonderful, wonderful acting and writing in this one. I also enjoyed Scully in this one and seeing how she handled things under pressure, being scared but her responses were instinctive. But this is clearly Mulder’s episode and the ending sets up more of what will be seen on the show.
Not a detailed post, I know, but here’s the deal: I’m reviewing four episodes for next week. That’s right. Four. That’s four hours of X-Files goodness summarized by little old me. You’re welcome.
I’ll end the post on this note, which was a reaction I had to share with Sue while watching the pilot episode.
KC: Mulder is really smiley about murders connected to aliens.
SUE: That’s it. That’s the show.
If you would like to watch along with me, these are the episodes I’m covering next time.
Beyond the Sea (Season 1, Episode 13)
The Erlenmeyer Flask (Season 1, Episode 24)
The Host (Season 2, Episode 2)
Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose (Season 3, Episode 4)