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Sunday September 8, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Sunday September 8, 2013 MYT 11:12:19 AM
by davin arul, ann marie chandy, AND michael cheang
Star2 takes a loving look at the TV show that made us see aliens, monsters, conspirators and the FBI in a whole new light.
TRUST no one. The truth is out there. I want to believe. Memorable catch-phrases from The X-Files, a series that has been hailed as one of the greatest TV dramas of all time, and certainly one of the most influential.
It generated conversations, sparked debates and arguments, sent millions of minds racing to process the possibilities and conspiracies served up each week.
It also sent me racing home one night a week, so that I could be fed and ready to tune in when the show came on. TV viewing options were still relatively scarce back then, and somehow the prospect of watching the show as it was broadcast appealed to me much more than watching it recorded.
The X-Files even broadened our horizons. In the fourth season episode Teliko, for example, a pigment-draining mutant came to the United States on a flight from Burkina Faso. Intrigued by the country’s name, I looked it up.
A short while later, when my cousin announced to the family that she was engaged to a nice young man from Burkina Faso, a place we’d probably never heard of, both my dad and I told her “Wrong! We have heard of it ... from The X-Files!”
In the course of its nine seasons, two movies and associated ventures (comics, books, video games, albums – which fan doesn’t own a copy of Songs In The Key Of X – card games, magazines, its “sister show” Millennium and direct spinoff The Lone Gunmen), it more than won a place in the hearts and imaginations of fans of the pretenatural; it became part of our lives.
Whether that part was confined to an hour a week, or an inspiration to research the extraordinary and bizarre (and unexplained), a compulsion to devour every last scrap of information – which required considerable effort in a time when the Internet was in its infancy – The X-Files had an effect on us all that no other TV show since has managed to recapture.
It fed numerous hungers in us: that craving for creepy thrills; the slightly paranoid portions of our psyche convinced that government and big business were hiding things from … and doing things to … us; it successfully served up memorable standalone featured creatures and spun a compelling mythology for its overall story arc (although one that grew densely layered and complex and occasionally inaccessible towards the end).
It gave us not only endearing and enduring protagonists in Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully, their immediate circle of colleagues (assistant director Walter Skinner, the Lone Gunmen, Deep Throat, X) but also adversaries who weren’t necessarily all bad, just differently motivated (Alex Krycek, the Smoking Man, Marita Covarrubias).
Even the bizarre menagerie of crazies, misguided individuals, sad figures, mutants and monsters who trooped past our eager eyes week after week held some appeal, if not allure. Okay, maybe not in the case of the Peacock family.
The X-Files was different, it was daring for its day (remember, this was a time before CSI made it all right to show dismemberment, decapitation and evisceration in graphic detail on network TV), and it built upon its inspirations (shows like The Night Stalker, The Twilight Zone and The Invaders) to create something unique, the likes of which we may never see on TV again.
To mark the 20th anniversary of the series’ first broadcast (Sept 10, 1993), we’ve put together a collection of highlights and fond reminiscences of the series and take a look at what all our old friends are up to these days.
The whole truth may not be in here, but the fun certainly is – so step right in, and don’t mind the liver-eating mutant in the corner; he’s just nesting. – DA
The truth is still out there
Monsters or messengers
They were all on XFiles really
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Entertainment, Entertainment, TV, The X-Files, 20th anniversary
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