There are a few shows which helped SCI-FI blossom in the 1990’s. The Star Trek shows, Babylon 5, Stargate SG-1 and of course The X-Files! The X- Files first aired in September 10, 1993 on the FOX channel. As every SCI-FI fan probably knows its initial run ended in 2002 after 9 seasons. I refuse to say cancelled because a show that runs 9 seasons just ends and this one did also, you can argue about the quality of the series finale but it definitely was trying to end the show satisfactory. In the beginning I think no one knew what kind of a big hit this was going to be but very soon The X-Files became very popular and it mostly only had positive reviews. At least the first 4-5 seasons it only got glowing reviews.


The show was not just SCI-FI, which mostly became the mythological episodes throughout each season. It also had horror stories, thrillers, drama, supernatural, you name it. At some point the creator Chris Carter got a lot of criticism mainly about the mythological episodes because it ultimately seemed to go nowhere. Never any clarity, every time it seemed to go a different direction and so on. Also from season 6 on it got more criticism regarding the series overall.


At the end of season 5 The X-Files was presumably at its most popular. Season 5 was shortened because following the fifth season a movie followed called: Fight The Future. It was in the cinema in 1998, not sure if this was considered a flop or not but it drew in $189,176,423 worldwide. I really loved the movie, went to see it in the cinema that summer. I think from that moment on David Duchovny perhaps wasn’t so interested anymore with making more X-Files episodes. Still the sixth season is still very entertaining perhaps not in the same league as the first 5 seasons but it still had some great stories to tell. Stories like "The Beginning", "Dreamland", "Two Fathers, One Son" and "Arcadia".

Season 7 is the season where we see the finale of the spin-off Millennium, the show had been cancelled after 3 seasons but luckily Chris Carter was able to finish off the story in The X-Files. Of course the other spin-off was The Lone Gunmen, rewatched it last year, still a fun show, shame it got cancelled after only 1 season but as with Millennium, The X-Files also served as vehicle to end The Lone Gunmen, although not to my satisfaction.


During that year, season 7, it was clear that David Duchovny was not returning as series regular on the 8th season. Perhaps at that time it was best to end The X-Files but Gillian Anderson still had a contract and Chris Carter thought that The X-Files could always go on, even without his two lead characters who conquered the world by that time as Mulder and Scully.


I thought I would be missing Mulder a lot in the following season but to be honest, this wasn’t really the case, perhaps because two things happened or changed. The one replacing David Duchovny’s character Mulder was John Doggett, played by Robert Patrick, who really does a terrific job! Somehow Gillian Anderson’s character Scully seems to become more free, more on her own, not to say Mulder and Scully didn’t work well together because it was the opposite but Mulder not being around all the time gave Gillian Anderson’s character Scully more breathing room, have no other word for it, I hope you understand what I mean. I've tried to explain it in my season 8 blog.

I really believe that the character Scully really went on a rollercoaster ride in the last two seasons. She was the one who became the believer and Doggett was the sceptic. In season 9 agent Reyes took over that role from Scully. For me this was a very important change, The X-Files got more interesting again, it got new and fresh flavor. While I write this it does not mean I wanted to see David Duchovny go, hell no, but it turned out much better than I expected, especially because of the change the character Scully went through. Also the character Skinner, played by Mitch Pileggi, got more important which I figured was a good thing. When Gillian Anderson did a (tiny) step back in season 9, we got another new character who was supposed to be the partner of Doggett after season 9. It was the earlier mentioned Monica Reyes, played by Annabeth Gish which I also thought was a good addition. I would have liked to see Doggett and Reyes on their own in season 10, because it was very likely that the 9th season was to be Gillian Anderson’s last, but of course we know this never happened. For the (initial) series finale David Duchovny came back to reprise his role as Mulder one more time, although he did come back a few times before in seasons 8 & 9. The fans were critical about the series finale, the reviews also weren’t very kind to it. I also wasn't really satisfied with the series finale at that point but I have seen far worse finales. The last two seasons, 10 & 11, I really see as a bonus, 16 more episodes of these two iconic characters, arguably the most successful TV partnership ever created!


In 2008, six years after the initial series finale, we got a second X-Files movie: I Want To Believe. It however bombed hard, it got lots of criticism from fans and reviewers alike. Most of them were disappointed because of the story, it was a standalone story, had nothing to do with the mythology where everyone was waiting for. As a standalone episode/movie, I thought it was okay but I also was disappointed with the fact that Chris Carter didn’t try and close the mythology story-line, would have been a perfect opportunity.

In the years that following there were continued rumors about a new movie or a miniseries. Duchovny and Anderson both seemed to be interested if there was an opportunity but it took 8 more years before we got to see more new X-Files stories again! In 2016 The X-Files came back as a limited series, at first, the 10th season contained 6 episodes! It again got mixed reviews but I myself was just happy we got to see these two characters again, Mulder and Scully, I found the season not spectacular but certainly entertaining.


Apparently the 10th season was successful enough for FOX to order an 11th season! Even better, the 11th season contained 4 more episodes, 10 in total! The first episode aired on January 4th 2018, again I thought it was an entertaining season but I have to say, I am just glad that I got the chance to see these two characters again on TV. I believe it was during the making of the 11th season, Gillian Anderson made clear that this was really going to be the last season with Gillian Anderson as Scully. I believe David Duchovny would have done one more if Gillian Anderson was also committed to one more. Sadly it did not happen. Also during season 10 I think that Chris Carter was also experimenting with the possibility of two new agents who could replace Duchovny’s and Anderson’s characters Mulder and Scully. They were Agent Einstein (Lauren Ambrose) and Agent Miller (Robbie Amell). I don’t know if they would be able to carry the show like the X-Files on their own but I certainly liked the characters during the last 2 episodes of the 10th season.

Final Word:

The X-Files is still very popular, it has expanded onto books and comics, it had its own magazine also, like Star Trek and Babylon 5. In the 90’s, Like Star Trek & Babylon 5, The X-Files was also released on VHS! I did not purchase the whole series but I did collect the mythological episodes on tape for a time. The X-Files will remain popular for decades to come I think, stories still hold up, the Blu-ray release looks perfect, 16:9 screen, it is as if you are watching a TV show from the last decade. I sincerely hope we will get another season or another movie with these characters, I would welcome it. I even would give it a chance when The X-Files would come back with two new lead characters, they of course need to have the same charisma as David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson. 😊 A few months ago there was a news item on TVLine that suggested the possibility of something new in the X-Files universe!

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