Author Topic: The X-Files  (Read 25379 times)

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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #120 on: January 25, 2016, 05:22:56 PM »
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Continued from the previous page


SPOILERS

"Carter promises an explanation will be given for the Smoking Man’s miraculous survival in the last episode of the upcoming series."

"Scully, meanwhile, felt the first pangs of attraction to Mulder 'when she called him from her bed in that first episode,' says Carter."


That and more in this fantastic interview with Chris Carter:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/01/24/the-x-files-chris-carter-defends-premiere-talks-mulder-scully-romance.html
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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #121 on: January 26, 2016, 12:17:51 AM »
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I hate to be contrarian, but I honestly think "My Struggle" is better than "Founder's Mutation." The premier has this very distinct Fight The Future vibe, which I'm only realizing now, and maybe I prefer that to a procedural.

I did really enjoy "Founder's Mutation," though. It's startling how much it feels exactly like an X-Files episode. Could have been plucked right out of Season 4 or something. Even the sentimental bits are on the same wavelength. The only thing that's off is Duchovny's gruff voice; somehow that's more noticeable when he's in his FBI suit.

(SPOILER!) Definitely appreciate that they left the story open-ended. I hope those kids make it.
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diggler

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #122 on: January 26, 2016, 02:49:51 PM »
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First episode felt a little exposition heavy. It seemed kind of lazy that the catalyst for Mulder and Scully reuniting was a random call from Skinner. Joel McHale's "they told me you were funny" line was nice though. The little bits of dry humor have always been the saving grace of this show.

Retconning the entire conspiracy is a pretty drastic move. It's as if the show is breaking the fourth wall by acknowledging it's story arc going completely off the rails. Second episode had a much better rhythm (and I'm hearing that it was originally the 5th episode). I'm glad to see them putting forth more effort than a simple nostalgia trip would suggest.

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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #123 on: January 26, 2016, 03:54:41 PM »
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Retconning the entire conspiracy is a pretty drastic move. It's as if the show is breaking the fourth wall by acknowledging it's story arc going completely off the rails.

I acknowledge that this is treacherous ground, but it might not be a retcon. The show has always played with this idea. Often when we actually see aliens on-screen, we find out pretty quickly that they're not alien. Could be a guy in an alien suit (remember the zipper?), a human genetic experiment, an alien-human hybrid, or even something in a hallucinatory dream (Field Trip). The alien that CSM shot is pseudo-non-canonical, as is most of that episode, because of the unreliable narrator.

My guess is that the show is suggesting not that aliens aren't around, but that the true "colonists" are actually humans using alien technology, creating alien-human hybrids themselves, etc.

They surely can't deny that aliens currently exist. Aliens are shown pretty clearly in Fight The Future. The black oil is alien.

This does potentially break down when you consider that we've seen shape-shifting aliens all over the place throughout the series. They certainly can't just be earthly monsters or government experiments, can they? Help me out — if there never have been actual alien colonists, is it in any way possible that the shape-shifters were working for humans?

In any case, I have a feeling the premiere won't hold up quite as well upon rewatch. (I'll find out sometime this week.)
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diggler

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #124 on: January 26, 2016, 06:21:06 PM »
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I suppose you could explain away a lot of those details being perpetrated by the government as opposed to aliens. Aliens clearly exist, even in this context of the story. What remains dubious is what their nature is. Even in Fight the Future it's never explicitly clear whether those creatures were responsible for that giant UFO at the end. That entire facility could have been operated by the government and they could've been the ones flying it away. Or are we to assume the black oil itself was piloting it? It's a totally massive rewrite but I'm hoping they at least put some thought into it.

CSM being alive is total bullshit though.
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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #125 on: January 26, 2016, 06:34:07 PM »
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Even in Fight the Future it's never explicitly clear whether those creatures were responsible for that giant UFO at the end. That entire facility could have been operated by the government and they could've been the ones flying it away.

It's possible that the government itself could be growing aliens. What we see on board the spacecraft could be seen as decent evidence of that, in fact.

The conflict throughout the show among different groups of aliens would seem to contradict this, though. Unless alien shapeshifters are actually created/controlled by the government. That might be the direction they're going. If so, I hope it's less wacky in execution than it seems in my imagination.
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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #126 on: January 27, 2016, 08:53:50 PM »
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Highly recommend the latest Vulture TV podcast on The X-Files:

http://www.vulture.com/2016/01/x-files-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly.html

After nine seasons and two movies, The X-Files is back for a six-episode tenth season. Two episodes in, Vulture X-Files recapper Keith Uhlich joins The Vulture TV Podcast crew to talk about how it’s faring so far, the case for and against that first episode, and what is (and is not) going on with Mulder and Scully’s chemistry. Plus, we go further back in the X-Files archives, remembering our favorite episodes over the years, evaluating the show’s legacy, and examining how tonally different The X-Files can be from episode to episode.
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diggler

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #127 on: January 28, 2016, 04:41:19 AM »
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The conflict throughout the show among different groups of aliens would seem to contradict this, though. Unless alien shapeshifters are actually created/controlled by the government. That might be the direction they're going. If so, I hope it's less wacky in execution than it seems in my imagination.

I'm sure on rewatch of the series (which I haven't done lately) there will be more holes in this twist. There's enough ambiguity for me to roll with it though.
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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #128 on: January 28, 2016, 08:47:32 AM »
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There are definitely holes. I'm on board with the idea of a fake alien invasion which is actually conducted by a bunch of shady human conspiritors, I think it's a really cool idea that could actually have been a concept for an entirely different show or movie, so I think it's really interesting and rejuvinating that the revival is apparently going that route. But when you try to reconcile the pieces of this new direction for the mythology with the old mythology there are most definitely elements which are really hard to reconcile. Of course, there were elements of just the old mythology which contradicted each other. As always with The X-Files, the more you think about the details the less sense they make. I'm doing my best having watched both new episodes twice now to get over that critical/analytical side of myself and embrace the show once again for what it is.

By the way, I may be stealing some of the points you've both made here for the podcast ;) For what it's worth, I think my preference is for My Struggle > Founder's Mutation too. Not entirely sure why, as I have numerous problems with the episode, but I think there's just so more meat there and I find it much more interesting to think about the mythology aspect than the whole William/M&S as parents. Though I did find it interesting that Founder's Mutation leaned into the mythology as much as it did, and I'm curious whether this will be a trend for all of the allegedy "stand alone" epsisodes in this revival. Avi has already seen at least as far as Mulder And Scully Meet The Were-Monster (next week's episode) so I'll try to find out from her when we record tonight.

I'm going to listen to that Vulture podcast on my lunch break today. Interestingly, next week's ep is apparently a celebration of some of the show's classic episodes, so that promises to be an interesting one.

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #129 on: January 28, 2016, 10:11:03 AM »
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Steal away! I can't wait for the next podcast. I've read Avi's review, but I need to hear what you all have to say collectively.

Maybe I'm just asking this because of all the holes in the mythology, or maybe this is a timely listener question for your show: Looking back at The X-Files, isn't it the consensus that monster-of-the week episodes hold up better than mythology episodes?

(Or maybe that's been discussed. Can't remember if you've discussed that or if it was just Kumail.)
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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #130 on: January 29, 2016, 06:58:21 PM »
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After listening to this week's podcast, I'm slightly nervous about rewatching My Struggle. I think the excitement of the first watch might have clouded my brain, or maybe it was overloaded with information and satisfied by constant stimulus. You liked it more the second time, though, so I could be wrong. Am I allowed to skip the porch scene?

Once again, I almost squealed when you asked my question. So I guess I'm biased, but this was a fantastic episode.

In case you're running dry, a question that might be relevant next week: What's your favorite Darin Morgan episode? Do you think his deconstruction of Mulder and Scully ever goes too far? (I don't, but some people certainly do. Humbug could be an example.)
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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #131 on: January 30, 2016, 11:28:57 AM »
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Haha, I watched both eps twice before the podcast. I stand by My Struggle as the better episode.

I actually had the opposite reaction to you - I liked it better the second time around. The first time my excitement was somewhat tempered because I didn't want to disappoint myself. That said, I still felt somewhat let down just like I did after IWTB. But I read a bunch of reviews, thought on it quite a lot, and ultimately came to reconcile that there was a huge difference between my lofty hopes and what the actual show actually always was. That said, the episode is certainly not perfect. It needed to be longer, or - what I'd have personally preferred - they'd had more confidence in the audience to pick up what was going on if they'd jumped into the middle where Mulder was already deep into his investigation which led him to this new direction for the mythology. I'm really excited for where they go with this, but extremely worried that My Struggle II will suffer from the same problem as the first. Avi has some impressive connections, so she knows a lot of what's to come and she's spoiled me on some of it - so I know what's coming. Finger's crossed they pull it off in 44 minutes.

Founder's Mutation was a good episode, but I think the popular consensus that it's an all time great is misguided. After the admittedly imperfect My Struggle, it is a solid standalone, but I think most of the praise it's getting is due to the fantasy sequences with William, and for the back-to-basics use of horror and too gross to watch imagery. Personally, my favorite aspect of the episode was that it did, in fact, tie into the mythology and the experimentation on humans by injecting them with alien DNA. In my mind, Kyle and Molly are successful results of the Super Solider 2.0 program.

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #132 on: February 02, 2016, 10:24:37 AM »
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Last night's ep was pretty great, right? First ep was def a little clunky for me (even down to them not quite having a handle on Gillian's wig yet), the second was better and this was the one that made me think this reboot is definitely a worthwhile endeavor for the series legacy.
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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #133 on: February 02, 2016, 10:35:59 AM »
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Yeah, it was pretty great. My expectations were unreasonably high, since it was the Darin Morgan episode. They were mostly met. That twist was so delightful.

No, they're definitely not phoning it in. This is actually turning out to be a season of extremes. The first was maybe the most dense and paranoid mythology episode ever, the second was one of the goriest episodes ever (although Sanguinarium still has that honor, right?), and this third one is definitely the goofiest episode ever.

Kumail certainly downplayed his role. He kept saying "it's really a minor character," etc. Well done. Now I'm wondering if any of his lines were ad-libbed. "I had a whole speech prepared" totally sounds like him.
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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #134 on: February 02, 2016, 02:24:47 PM »
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That was my favorite ep from the revival so far.

As much as it was served as a nod to the golden era of the show, it felt like an ep ripped from that era itself - albeit one with an older Mulder and Scully. I was sold the moment we saw the usual stoner couple in the opening scene, and had a goofy grin pretty much from that point onwards.

This was the episode I was probably anticipating the most since Darin Morgan's style is so distinctive and his track record has produced some gems. But a few days ago they posted a clip from the show (the graveyard fight) without any context, and I had a horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach - it all felt too campy, too stagey, the lack of score didn't feel good... Fortunately, in context it worked and was not indicative of the episode as a whole!

I think this ep will be regarded in the same light as DM's previous two best eps: Clyde Bruckman and Jose Chung, and it was nice to see his favorite theme of the banality and pointlessness of human existence making an appearance again too.

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