After Gillian Anderson made a guest appearance on the Nerdist Podcast, she was asked if, after the success of a couple other revival series, would she be interested in doing an X-files one, to which the answer was a resounding yes. That is if both David Ducovony and Chris Carter would be on board as well. Soon after a petition was started to get the network interested in making an X-files revival going. And that, kids, is how the X-files; one of the most iconic shows from the 90’s, has made its debut into the modern era, and it’s all thanks to a few nerds.
This revival starts off with Mulder and Scully meeting with a man by the name of Tad O’Malley, a Fox News-esque, Bill O’Reilly type, who is desperate to get help from the famed ex-FBI agents. He’s been ruffling some feathers with his theories, and he believes that these two will be able to tell him whether or not he is wrong. This is how it starts out, and it only gets better from there with William, Mulder and Scully’s son, making the rounds as his parents wonder what life would’ve been like had they not given him up for adoption. We only get a couple episodes of this before the famed monster-of-the-week episodes begin with a reptilian were-monster who was innocent of his crimes and a tulpa killing those who hurt the homeless, all while Scully deals with the loss of her mother. Finally, Agent Miller and Agent Einstein call Mulder and Scully to a terrorist case, where, on a shroom-trip, Mulder square dances to “Achy Breaky Heart.”
All of these episodes were great, and I have little to no qualms about them. It’s the finale that I had the major issues with.
First off, there is way too much happening all at once in the finale. Mulder is missing, again. There is a mass contagion that is going to kill everyone on the planet and Scully is the only one who can save everyone.
The plot is predictable, and bland. It’s easy to figure out what’s going to happen before it even happens. It’s all done to add drama, but it could’ve been done better. The biggest surprise was the cliffhanger ending. However, without the guarantee of more episodes, it is not a good idea at all to leave a revival series on a cliffhanger like that.
Attack of the Were-Monster
Even though this revival series leaves us hanging, it does give us the gift of one of the best episodes in the series. This episode features the reptilian were-monster played by comedian Rhys Darby, and offers some of the best lines to ever come from television.
It only gets weirder from there. Most of the episode is Scully trying to get Mulder to believe in monsters again, as he has become the skeptic, seeing as most of their old cases were explained away with wind or rocks. This episode is probably as funny as it is because it features two comedians in both Rhys Darby and Kumail Nanjiani. It also features Mulder attempting to use modern technology. It’s always fun to watch older adults not understand new technology.
What’s Up With the DOD and William?
The Department of Defense comes in a few times to seize files, and evidence from cases that Scully and Mulder are currently working on, but the reason behind this is never told. They come in a few times and then are never heard from again. This is just sloppy storytelling, leaving an end open, never to be heard from again. Did they have something to do with the cigarette smoking man? Were they part of a different government cover up? What is the role of the department of defense in this whole thing? Another thing they left hanging was the whereabouts of Scully and Mulder’s son William. He was mentioned several times, either through dreams or just talking about whether or not it was a mistake to give him up These are all questions that should’ve been answered, and we’re ultimately left wanting.
The X-files revival was a great idea, and it started off really strong, but by the end of its six episode run we were left desperately wanting more without solid hope of any more episodes. The Department of Defense might have played a role, but was never brought up again, and we never get to meet William, even though he is mentioned several times. I wanted very much to believe in this revival, and for a while there, I did. Unfortunately, the finale put the final nail in that coffin for me.
+ Were-monster episode is the best of the series
+ Mulder line-dancing
-Plot lines opened but never closed