Whether you’ve been waiting 10 years or a few months for the return of the “The X-Files” on FOX, fans can agree that the Jan. 24 premiere of the six-part miniseries was highly anticipated.
The episode opens with Agent Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) contacting his old colleague and former love interest Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) and asking for her help with a new extraterrestrial case. In the earlier incarnation of “The X-Files,” the pair worked together to investigate alien forms, but after a decade off, Scully has moved on to pursue work as a surgeon. Yet, when Mulder calls, she is ready to drop everything to help him investigate a new case.
Mulder gets in contact with Tad O’Malley (Joel McHale), a conspiracy theorist who makes Mulder question everything he believed to be true about alien abductions. The conspiracy theorist shows Mulder that supposedly alien technology — such as a disappearing UFO — is actually man-made.
This discovery leads Mulder to believe that aliens are not the ones who perform alien abductions—a small group of humans abduct bystanders, mix human and alien DNA, study the fetuses and brainwash the victims. Mulder believes this group of humans is performing mind control experiments using alien technology as a plot to take over the world.
The possibility that man is capable of such evil experiments is more frightening than any alien abduction. For first-time viewers of the show, this is a fascinating, if not confusing, idea. But it delivers a smarting blow to those who have been fans of “The X-Files” for years. Longtime viewers must now wrestle with the possibility that the alien abductions Mulder and Scully spent years investigating were nothing more than man-made machinery and mischief.
The new conspiracy revealed in the premiere negates much of the first nine seasons of “The X-Files.” However, loyal fans can take comfort in the fact that after the premiere, the series returns to its unorthodox roots. The second episode shows Mulder and Scully working to prove that the department of defense performs experiments on the genetic modification of humans. They encounter deformed children taken from families for experimentation. Scully, played beautifully and poignantly by Anderson, ponders whether this is the fate that befell the son who she gave up.
Overall, the premiere of “The X-Files” presented a fascinating and frightening conspiracy. As the mini-series continues, perhaps the plot will take even more unexpected turns.
Email Talia Milavetz at [email protected]