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Let’s Revisit Some Classic X-Files Episodes (S01-S03)

NEW X-FILES EPISODES ARE ALMOST HERE.

I repeat. The return of The X-Files is SO close, like only a few days away close.

For those of you unlucky souls who are unfamiliar with The X-Files all you need to know is that it’s a series from the 90’s created by Chris Carter about two FBI agents Mulder and Scully who take on strange or abnormal cases that can’t be explained, at least not at first. Fox Mulder, played by David Duchovny, believes his younger sister was abducted by aliens and that the Government is behind it. Dana Scully, played by Gillian Anderson, is the sceptic meant to help reign in Mulder’s less logical assumptions on cases. The series ran for 9 seasons and had 2 feature films, but it also set the stage for more quirky, sci-fi, fantasy-based television shows in the future.

I’m a fairly recent fan of The X-Files in that I recall seeing an episode or two with my dad when the show was originally airing, but I was a little too young to appreciate the series and I was also terrified. I rediscovered the series back in 2011 when it was added to Netflix‘s roster and I became OBSESSED. I’ve since then watched the series 2-3 times, and I started rewatching it yet again the moment I found out the reboot/mini-series was coming out in January 2016.

Just a heads up that there may be some spoilers in my comments for these episodes.

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Ice (S01E08) – Glen Morgan & James Wong
When I started watching The X-Files in 2011 this was the first episode where I was like “THIS. This I love.” Mulder and Scully are called to investigate a team of people isolated and stranded out in a snow storm with some thing that is drove the crew insane and in turn killed each other. With a premise like that it comes as no surprise that the writers were heavily inspired by John Carpenter’s 1982 film “The Thing” for this one off episode which they openly say is an homage.

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Beyond The Sea (S01E13) – Glen Morgan & James Wong
This is probably one of the more quiet but also chilling cold openings of the series and kicks you right in the gut at the same time with the reveal of Scully’s father died. The episode is very Scully development focused as it calls in to question her faith and whether she actually does believe in the supernatural or paranormal especially when it comes to dealing with Boggs, a serial killer that claims he can communicate with the dead/Dana’s  father.

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Darkness Falls (S01E20) – Chris Carter
There was something about this monster-of-the-week episode that I was fascinated with. Maybe it was because it reminded me of how creepy I thought it was to go camping in the woods at night or my general distaste for bugs. Either way the cool concept of bright neon glowing bugs over taking full grown adults if they left the safety of light struck a cord with me.

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The Host (S02E02) – Chris Carter
This is one of those episodes were have a very clear vivid memory of watching this episode with my dad when I was 8. The imagery of the worm-like creature gave me nightmares but I specifically being scared of using porta potties after the creature had hidden in one.
FUN FACT! The executive producer Glen Morgan‘s brother, Darin Morgan, played the role of the Flukeman monster. Darin later went on to write some of my favorite episodes as you’ll see below.

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Duane Barry / Ascension (S02E05 / S02E06) – Chris Carter / Paul Brown
I have a tendency to be drawn to monster of the week episodes vs the overarching mythology episodes, but these Duane Berry two parter episodes were so nail bitingly tense I couldn’t help but have them in my favorites. It’s a hostage situation but mixes in alien abductions and closes out with a truly terrifying kidnapping of Scully that completely changes the course of the series. It’s also fascinating to find out that the main reason the writers had Dana abducted was because she was pregnant in real life and wasn’t able to film until after she’d given birth.

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Humbug (S02E20) – Darin Morgan
Boy, do I love a good monster-of-the-week episode, but also a good funny monster-of-the-week episode. Mulder and Scully head to a town known for it’s population of former circus performers due to some mysterious murders Mulder suspects were done by a myth known as the Fiji mermaid. I LOVE it when serious usually dramatic shows don’t take themselves too seriously and that’s exactly what Darin Morgan brought to the episodes he worked on. While the overall tone was lighthearted compared to previous episodes it touched on topics such as the need to feel wanted and Otherness in society.

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Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose (S03E04) – Darin Morgan
Holy smokes, Peter Boyle stole the show on this episode with his stoic, almost deadpan, delivery for his character Clyde who can see the future specifically how people are going to die. The banter he has between Scully in particular was great. While episode probably made me laugh the most it also snuck up on me with the feels at the end. It’s no surprise Peter Boyle won an Emmy for this role, and it’s also what helped secure his role as Frank Barone on Everybody Loves Raymond.

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Jose Chung’s From Outer Space (S03E20) – Darin Morgan
Surprise! Yet another Darin Morgan written episode and it is brilliant. The cold opening truly sets the tone for a beautifully confusing yet organized mess of an episode. The plot is pieced together through retellings of what appears to be an alien abduction of two teens on a date from the point of views of not just Mulder and Scully, but the teens, and several others involved in the case. There’s stereotypical alien costumes, hypnosis, aliens drinking coffee, men in black and out of character acting (but for good reason I swear!). Plus Alex Trebec has a one liner. Darin Morgan is the best. ‘Nuff said.

“What I loved about his scripts was that he seemed to be trying to destroy the show.” – David Duchovney on Darin Morgan

All of these episodes are available for streaming on Netflix. Brand new episodes of The X-Files start airing Sunday January 24th 2016 on FOX.


 

Are you a fan of The X-Files? Did you grow up watching it or just recently discover it thanks to sites like Netflix? Comment below or tweet me @teriarchibbles!

MoreSpooker is my new column on anything and everything involving creepy, scary horror themed media! Future posts will be coming on Wednesdays!

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