Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Hasten January

X-Files


SCULLY: I swear to god, Mulder; if I heard "Silent Night" one more time I was going to start taking hostages. What are we doing here?
MULDER: Stakeout.
SCULLY: On Christmas Eve?
MULDER: It's an important date.
SCULLY: No kidding.
--  Agents Dana Scully and Fox Mulder (Gillian Anderson, David Duchovny),                   The X-Files, Season 6, Episode 6, "How The Ghosts Stole Christmas"
Don't misunderstand: News Corporation and Fox (network, cable, or film) are creatures of Little Rupert and Fat Roger's right-wing megalomania and overweening greed, and as such are tools -- rotten, rotten, rotten to the core.

That said, it made sense to me that Fox would showcase a program which presented a fairly paranoid world where governments manipulated the population to conceal a secret relationship with extraterrestrials, who were bent on doing god knew what.

 TTIOT: Presented With X-Files' Classic Opening Music By Mark Snow

The series debuted in 1992 and had already been on the air for 4 years when I finally gave in and watched it for the first time (the delay because I just don't support the Wizened Aussie's products on principle). I was immediately drawn in, and Had A Sad when it left the air in 2002.

After a ten-year story arc, we never really discovered what the government and the aliens were doing, and why -- but in the end, that was strangely all right. Much of the pleasure in a good novel, film or drama is in being kept wanting more than having as a story is told -- Chris Carter, the series' originator, and a team of talented writers had kept The Truth just out of reach through over 200 episodes. 

Now,  X-Files will be returning for a six-episode Coda, of sorts, in January 2016 (Fox wanted to bring the show back for the raitings it might receive, and the confiscatory ad rates it could charge. It was a business decision, period).

You can see a list of the new episodes and their air dates here.  Some of the usual suspects -- including Mitch Pellegi (FBI Assistant Director Walter Skinner), Dean Haglund, Bruce Harwood and Tom Braidwood (Langly, Frohicke and Byers, collectively the "Lone Gunman"), and William B. Davis, The Cigarette-Smoking Man (aka C.G.B. Spender, the supposed father of Fox Mulder, and assassin of both JFK and Martin Luther King, Jr.), will appear.  Filming was done in and around Vancouver, B.C. -- the original production home of the series before it moved to Los Angeles, and one reason so many Canadian actors appeared in it (good thing too, eh).


Flukeman, From Season 2 (One of my personal favorites), Played
By Darin Morgan, Later A Writer And Producer On The Series

They booked six episodes, rather than a full 20-show season -- reportedly so that Fox could work around David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson's schedules. Per Wikipedia, Duchovny "said he had no interest in doing a full season because: 'We're all old, we don't have the energy for a full season.' " 

However, Duchovny later said in an interview that he, Anderson and other former cast members were open to a return of X-Files; it just wasn't clear that a full-season run as in the old series would be possible. The first episode of the six is titled "My Struggle" (and we all know what that is in German, nicht wahr?), and ends with "My Struggle Part II".

I have no idea where Carter is going with this, but after hearing "Little Drummer Boy" for the septobazillionth time just a while ago, Gillian Anderson's line from one of the XF's  specific Exmass episodes came back to me, clear as a bell -- along with the CSM's famous Bah-Humbug takeoff on the 'Forrest Gump' park-bench scene:

 William B. Davis Breaks It Down For Us
CIGARETTE-SMOKING MAN: Life... is like a box of chocolates. A cheap, thoughtless, perfunctory gift that nobody ever asks for. Unreturnable, because all you get back is another box of chocolates. So you're stuck with this undefinable, whipped-mint crap that you mindlessly wolf down because there's nothing else left to eat. Sure, once in a while, there's a peanut butter cup, or an English toffee -- but they're gone too fast and the taste is... fleeting. So you end up with nothing but broken bits, filled with hardened jelly and teeth-shattering nuts; if you're desperate enough to eat those, all you've got left is an empty box... filled with useless, brown paper wrappers. 
As I am anxious for this season to pass into the history books, seeing the Old Crew together again is something to look forward to.  Happy Holidays.
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