With a new miniseries event coming our way, I figured it was time I went back and refreshed myself with genre TV staple and fan favorite, The X-Files.
I did watch the show back in my youth, but only maybe to S4 before trailing off and catching random repeat episodes here and there. Thanks to Netflix though, it was easy enough to remedy and achieve my goal of finally watching the entire show.
Despite the iconic show’s dated misgivings, including a handful of unimaginative “monster of the week” eps and the truly lackluster series finale, it’s very easy to see why the show is so beloved by us genre fans. More often than not it was fun, spooky, strange, and exciting. So what were my personal favorites now that I’ve successfully revisited? Well, I’m glad you asked…
Blood – S02E07: I’ll bet no one expected this to be the first on the list, but it’s true. I even prefer it over Host and Squeeze. Mulder out on his own, 90’s Los Angeles, a modern gothic soap opera vibe, vampires!? LOVE. IT.
Irresistible/Orison – S02E13/S07E07: Donnie “The Death Fetishist” Pfaster is one of my favorite X-Files villains. He was creepy, intimidating, and I’m still not sure if he was a true demon or not. All I know is that he was able to push a normally calm and collected Scully into shooting him dead point blank, which I thought was a great turn for her character.
Anasazi – S02E25: Aliens and UFOs have a strong relationship with the American Southwest (where I was born and raised) and this season finale explored it perfectly – I consider it to be one of the strongest finales of the show’s run.
Home – S04E02: What horror fan doesn’t love this episode? Inbred rednecks and rural horror? Yes, please. Disturbing and scary, it’s easily one of my absolute favorites.
Bad Blood – S05E12: I found I wasn’t the biggest fan of the show’s comedic episodes, but I really enjoyed this vampire story told in flashback by both Mulder and Scully. It was fun and entertaining to see how they both viewed each other’s actions during their earlier cases, when Scully was still a skeptic and Mulder was hellbent on believing anything and everything.
Patient X/The Red and The Black – S05E13/14: I loved Scully’s forced exposure to the full alien conspiracy in these episodes, which saw her survive the wave of abductee immolations and then recall it all through hypnosis. I also enjoyed the side story involving Marita, though sadly it wasn’t explored as fully as it could have been, like most of Marita’s storylines wound up as.
Dreamland I & II – S06E04/05: These comedic eps took place in and outside of Area 51, and saw Mulder body-switched with a base agent who was all too eager to leave his life behind. The story was fairly gimmicky, but as a Vegas kid and desert rat, Area 51 and any stories about it naturally appeal to me and this was no different.
Requim – S07E22: I loved the small storyline following Marita Covarrubias and Alex Krycek, who I felt never got enough screen time together, and enjoyed Skinner’s full switch to believer after witnessing Mulder’s abduction. Overall, I thought this was another of the series’ strongest season finales.
Within/Without – S08E01/02: These two episodes refreshed a few arcs from the previous seasons, which was wise considering we were about to start following two new agents and new storylines. Here, I was particularly fond of Doggett’s introduction to the series and Mulder’s abductee status.
Patience – S08E03: Another episode that probably appeals to many horror fans, it saw Doggett finally investigating his first real X-File; a humanoid bat creature murdering people in rural Idaho. One of my favorite “monster of the week” episodes that actually included a real monster.
Release – S09E17: Since Doggett’s introduction, I was very interested in seeing where his “murdered son” arc would land. Release wrapped it up and, even though it incorporated no aspect of the paranormal or supernatural, I loved the resolution of it.
So that’s it! My favorites. Not including any eps where Mulder is shirtless, because, obviously.
Having revisited the whole series, I’m downright excited for the upcoming miniseries. It’ll be great to see Mulder and Scully back at it again and I’m very glad to have Lauren Ambrose back on the small screen. And maybe most important of all, if it (along with Heroes and Twin Peaks) does well as a stand alone event, who knows what other shows can be coming back in limited edition bundles? Buffy, anyone!?