Writer, Teacher, Researcher
I’ve been looking forward to the new X-Files for quite some time now. I remember sitting in the theatre, watching “I Want to Believe” (2008), and being so disappointed. I just wanted something good. Something that brought me back to 1995, when FOX was first starting out and taking risks no one else wanted to take. I wanted Scully, Mulder, and all the mystery back.
When I heard the X-Files was returning, I got a bit scared. I wasn’t sure what to expect or if it would just be a big disappointment. I tried to ignore most of what people were saying about it before tonight, only because I didn’t want it spoiled. I went online and looked up the episodes Chris Carter said I should rewatch. I made my way through my favorites, and waited patiently for the football game to finish. I kept telling myself, “If it’s bad it’s only 6 episodes and I can forget all about it; and, if it’s good I’ll have 6 more episodes to add to one of my all-time favorite shows.
This is my “live blog” as I write what I see tonight—so excited. Especially with Chris Carter returning.
My Thoughts on “My Struggle”
So far, so good. I’m happy about Mulder speeding us through his history so that we know where he’s at. Then, we get Skinner and Scully back right away. Yeah, Dana and Fox are looking older, but it makes me happy to see them both.
Mulder doesn’t look good though. He’s scruffy. He’s wearing beat up and rundown clothes. He’s not in a good place. Not in a good place at all. He doesn’t seem to trust anyone and as much he wants to believe, he just doesn’t seem to be able to do it anymore. But, he’s still Mulder, with his laptop’s camera covered with duck tape—you can never be too safe.
Tad O’Malley, how can you not just hate him just for talking? He’s smarmy. You have to love it. (John McHale does a great job with this character.) Plus, on the one hand he’s all “Mulder and Scully, you’re my heroes” and then he’s also trying to get them to believe his conspiracy nonsense.
I am appreciating the jaded Mulder who around O’Malley is just as much of a skeptic as Scully. The references to recent people and events that throws us into 2016, no questions asked. I appreciate being situated in the present in no uncertain terms.
I also appreciate that O’Malley is such as conspiracy nut. My original love for the X-Files was partly due to how it really pushed the envelope about government, policing, and how we are lied to as well as surveillance. (There’s a great deal of Foucault throughout the X-Files.) It seems as though we’re returning to this. O’Malley allows us entrance into the 2016 version of surveillance and conspiracy. Those themes are just as important now as they were 13 years ago. It’s the X-Files for a post-9/11 world. We need to really decide what is the truth and what is fiction, and sometimes that’s difficult.
And, as is well-documented, I love a solid non-linear narrative, so the move between the present-day with Scully and Mulder and what’s happened in the past makes me excited to see the connections. I love that the past helps bring in some of the mythology of the series.
There doesn’t seem to be much change in the story arch. They are presented with a series of mysteries and as soon as they find out what’s up, Fox believes and Scully doesn’t. Fox gets to see an ARV running on free energy. He is starting to put things together and is frustrated with everything. Scully tests some blood and says “there are no aliens” (of course). Then, she needs to go back and check again (as usual) and then, after it’s too late, she’s on board. Now the fun begins.
Even in his pain, Mulder figures out what’s going on. There’s a group of men who are behind all the alien activity that the X-Files have investigated. They stole a downed Roswell UFO and are working to take over the world. I love that Mulder talks of the Military Industrial Complex and that alien powers are being used by us, and not aliens. His big “ah-hah” is just beginning. And, it comes from another informant of Mulder’s, a nice throw back to Deep Throat.
I also appreciate the news footage they use and incorporate into O’Malley’s and Mulder’s speeches (for lack of a better reason). There is a lot of telling, but it quickly brings us to the future and moves us quickly to where we need to be. Scully continues to be skeptical, especially due to her estranged relationship with Mulder. How can you not love her?
Yes, the Cigarette Smoking Man is still smoking and back from the flames. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes. Carpe Diem. It’s good to see William B. Davis reprise this role and I’m glad he’s there.
All in all, I’m looking forward to the next 5 episodes. At times it was tense. There was awkwardness. And we had to wait for Anderson and Duchovny to get back into the swing of things. But, I think it’s there and this fan is excited.