“The X-Files” is a cult classic in American television, and it also became an American institution during its original run from 1993 to 2002. Fast forward to 2016 — it’s back.
The first edition in this six-episode revival series, “My Struggle,” follows America’s sweethearts, Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. Actors David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson returned to reprise their iconic roles.
The episode does a great job of appealing to hardcore fans as well as newcomers. It has the cast and backstory of the original series and a completely new take on Mulder’s story that newbies can latch onto.
It revolves around Mulder and the alien conspiracy of which he spent his life in pursuit.
Sources close to Mulder lead him to believe that the entirety of the alien conspiracy has been a lie. And instead, it has been a massive conspiracy by the government using alien-like technology to fool people into believing in aliens to cover up their own abductions and experiments.
The episode opens with a voiceover where Mulder explains his pursuit of the unexplainable cases stored in the basement level of the FBI building — aptly labeled as X-Files.
Mulder’s opening monologue explained the history of the series in a matter of minutes, but it told a slightly different version of events than what actually aired on television.
He says that in 2002, the FBI closed the X-Files in a change of direction in policy. That’s sort of true, but what happened, more importantly, is that the government put Mulder on trial for killing a man that couldn’t be killed — because he wasn’t human.
He and Scully flee government officials and wind up off the grid — hiding from a government hell bent on killing Mulder for his work in the X-Files.
The move into exile is what leads into the film that released in 2008 called “The X-Files: I Want to Believe.”
The end of the film wiped the slate clean for Mulder and the government decided it just wanted to move on without him rather than hunt him down.
The episode introduces some new characters — most notably Tad O’Malley played by Joel McHale. O’Malley is a crazy Fox News-type news person, but his show is about conspiracies.
O’Malley contacts Mulder and wants to tell the world his story live on air. Mulder, a man desperate for people to believe his story, drags himself out of seclusion to go back to Washington D.C.
The characters in the show are exactly as you’d expect — if you’ve seen the show before. It’s clear that it was easy for Duchovny and Anderson to slide back into the roles they played for so long.
The show does a good job of mixing their old tale into the modern day, Edward Snowden world.
“They police us; they spy on us — tell us that makes us safer. We’ve never been in more danger,” Mulder says to Assistant Director Walter Skinner in the X-Files office, which he hadn’t set foot in since the season finale of season eight.
There were nine seasons of the show. Mulder wasn’t in the final season at all until the last episode of the series.
“My Struggle” is a great way to revive the series and introduce it to a new audience.
This new season of “The X-Files” is being unofficially referred to as season 10. It airs on Fox on Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016 at 7 p.m.