'The X-Files Season 10' Issue 1 Review: Your Resignation is Unacceptable
The X-Files is my favorite TV show of all time bar none. I watched it for the first time all the way through when I was 16 and it instantly struck a chord with me. At the time I was deep into conspiracies, aliens, and cryptozoology so The X-Files was the perfect melding of all three of those things. Throw in the amazing leads, David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, along with some of the best script writing ever to be seen on TV and you have what was the perfect show for me.
(Major Show Spoilers From Here On)
It's not all smiles with The X-Files however. Unfortunately after season 6 the quality of the show takes a serious turn. Many attribute it to the mythology of the show which "wraps up" in the middle of season 6 but doesn't actually end. The post-6 mytharc, as us x-philes call it, doesn't go anywhere interesting after season 6 and becomes derivative of the original mytharc that was so strong. Others attribute it to the loss of Duchovny as Mulder at the end of season 7 as a main cast member so that he could devote more time to movies. It was a move that I never agreed with on his part as he was, along with Anderson, the foundation for the show and the chemistry between them was a huge draw for many fans.
As the show limped towards the eighth and ninth season, the mytharc became more convoluted and wasn't as focused as it had been in the previous seasons. New ideas, such as the alien-hybrid super soldiers, were introduced but not fully realized in the scope of the show. Along with the new ideas, Robert Patrick and Annabeth Gish were brought on to fill the gap left behind by Duchovny's departure. While I have no problem with either Gish or Patrick, they were given a raw deal as they had to attempt to create chemistry with Andersen in a short period of time as opposed to over seven seasons. I commend them for trying and it isn't their faults.
The series finale of The X-Files is, as a diehard fan, one of the most disappointing episodes of the show. Duchovny, who had only cameoed in one other episode in season 9, came back for the finale to finally discover the truth and wrap up the series. The finale features characters who had died previously in the show, namely Krycek and the Lone Gunmen, along with other minor characters such as Agent Jeffrey Spender. It felt like the kitchen sink had been thrown at the episode just to make up for the lackluster writing. The show wraps up with more questions asked than were answered, and while the final scene is quite touching, the episode fails to end the show. It seems as if they had more plans for the franchise after the series end.
All of this back story leads to The X-Files Season 10, the canonical continuation of The X-Files in comic book form. It is written by Joe Harris and Chris Carter and is published by IDW, who have published many pop culture licenses such as Ghostbusters and Doctor Who. Season 10 takes place after the second film and is a return to form for both the mytharc and the characters. The mytharc has been updated for a more paranoid society that had been dealing with the NSA revelations and Wikileaks. The update to the mytharc is done in a way that rectifies problems with the post season six mytharc as well as making it feel fresh and new.
The first issue of the series, "Believers", is primarily a refresher for those of us who watched the show and a new introduction for those who hadn't seen the show before. Scully and Mulder are now living under the assumed identities of Mr. and Mrs. Blake, a couple living in Spotsylvania, Virginia. Mulder is now an author, taking after my heart, and Scully is a doctor at the local hospital. They seem to be living in anonymity, with Mulder sitting at home all day with writer's block and Scully taking care of creepy children at the hospital.
This anonymity is broken by the appearance of familiar face, Walter Skinner (who is now Deputy Director) who brings news that the FBI network has been compromised by an outside source and the X-Files seem to be the main target of the attack. The scene with Mulder, Skinner, and Scully is one that made me smile as it has been a long time since I had seen the three of them together in any form, and even though it is a comic, it is awesome.
The rest of the first issue involves the three being attacked by cloaked assailants whose intentions are not yet known but are most likely involved with the FBI network compromise. They stalk and attack both Skinner and Scully, forcing Mulder to try and protect both of them. It's a familiar situation for fans of the series and one that continued to realize the world fully.
The dialogue is also extremely well done for a comic book. Every time I read what one of the characters is saying I can hear them in my head saying those exact lines of dialogue. This to me is a sign of a successful piece of licensed material as the characters should reflect themselves regardless of the media. Watching the characters interact with one another on such a familiar level solidifies for me that the writers of the book have the fans best intentions in mind.
The X-Files Season 10 Issue 1 is a great start to IDW's run with The X-Files property. It ends with the typical cliffhanger that characterized the show's mytharc all during its tenure. It also brings two of my favorite characters in television back to life for a modern audience. I can only hope that this comic book and other things, such as Kumail Nanjiani's The X-Files Files, will help The X-Files to either be picked up as a miniseries or have a third film made. A fanboy can dream and hope but until then The X-Files Season 10 is a great way to get your post-TV X-Files fix.