Author Topic: The X-Files  (Read 33839 times)

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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #165 on: January 05, 2018, 08:35:27 AM »
+1
I was definitely on a high after the revelation at the end, but rewatching, it's still pretty clunky throughout. The twist makes more and more sense the more I think about it though; the story always was that Scully was barren so she never should have been able to get pregnant. The suggestion that, oh, she actually had a couple of ova still, never really sat well with me. It was lazy. This makes so much more sense. En Ami is the episode where CSM demonstrates he can cure kids of cancer, for christ's sake! It also, I think, goes a way to explain why Monica is now on Team CSM. Not saying it's entirely logical, but if she knew that William was - in some yet-to-be-determined sense - CSM's son, I could buy her begrudgingly accepting his "olive branch" (I mean, one of the good guys had to accept his offer eventually right?) out of some misguided sense of duty to "protect the child." It's far from perfect, and like you said, a far cry from the best of contemporary TV. But given how bad I feared this season would be, I'm just thrilled it's exceeded my exceptions so far. Shippers are hating, of course. Consensus is that the next 4 eps (all standalone with some mythology through-line) are better than this. Hopefully that means more than just M&S hold hands and the idea of CSM as William's father isn't mentioned.
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #166 on: January 08, 2018, 08:43:21 AM »
+1
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #167 on: January 16, 2018, 05:57:29 PM »
0
This was an especially good episode of the podcast. "This" was also a pretty good episode of The X-Files. (I'm hilarious.)

Keva is a really superb guest. I hope you have Roi back soon as well.

Erika Price is a clear reference to Erik Prince. (Relevant article here.) I think they brought some very specific real-world concerns into the episode quite deftly.

The banter was sooo on point. And like you said, Scully's agency was off the charts in this episode. I would say it verged on overcorrection, except all of it actually worked. Is Glen Morgan the one who's historically been best at writing Scully?

Less thrilled with the sci-fi premise here. If you're going to do a Black Mirror episode, you have to take the details seriously. I suppose they didn't have much time to flesh it out, though.
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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #168 on: January 17, 2018, 11:30:03 AM »
0
So glad you're enjoying. I've been afraid this go around wasn't as great, so that's very good to hear. Yes, Keva rocks, and the best person to be involved if there's only one guest. She'll be involved a lot more this season. Roi and Jessa are back next ep. Roi's overseas now, but we're trying to make it work for her to do more. Glen Morgan and James Wong used to write together and did some of the best S1,2+4 eps. Would have to give some greater thought on if they're/he's best at writing her though. Honestly, I would have liked to see Gillian to have taken on (co)writing an ep again, maybe with one of the Female Writers they cued up for this season.
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #169 on: January 22, 2018, 10:47:03 AM »
0
I appreciated Roi and Jessa's perspective on the romance (or lack thereof, apparently). Glad I'm not the only one who was utterly confused by that scene. Last episode they were living together, cuddling on the couch, and making sex jokes. Now they're talking about how they sort of regret never being together? WHAT? It was complete nonsense. I'm sure Chris thought he was throwing a bone to the shippers, too. He should not be writing this show.
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polkablues

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #170 on: January 24, 2018, 11:48:39 AM »
0
Woof. ďMy Struggle IIIĒ is a strong new candidate for worst X-Files episode. Horrifically bad writing resulting in bad acting, compounded by bad directing and even worse editing. All the dramatization was hamfisted, all the exposition sloppy. Characters were unrecognizable. Iím sticking this season out because I want to see what Darren Morgan does, but holy shit I canít imagine any way I could have hated this episode more.
Now you're in the *spoiler* place.

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #171 on: February 15, 2018, 04:40:38 PM »
0
Caught up with "Ghouli." I'm not sure I agree with the effusive praise. Sure it's the best of this season up to this point, but I feel like I saw much better several times last season.

SPOILERS

On the plus side, it absolutely felt like a classic X-Files episode. It's kind of stunning how precisely they're able to replicate that feeling with at least half the new ones, especially this and Home Again.

Scully's big acting scene did not work for me. Probably because I did not believe for a second that this was William, so it seemed very silly. Now I can't unsee that. I also did not like how they kept switching back and forth between two angles; this may just have been something I noticed in my boredom and could also not unsee.

As you guys acknowledged, William is a little problematic. First of all, he crafted an elaborate prank on his two girlfriends and was cool with them going in there wielding knives? Secondly, he has two girlfriends?

In the episode's defense, I will say that it handles the double girlfriend scenario much better than Manchester By The Sea, where it was supposed to be a cute "boys will be boys" sort of thing. Here, there are dire consequences, and the girls find out, and it's not fun anymore.

All of that said, I think they've already made William a pretty interesting character, and I want to see more.

Oh... and I'm still not sure what to think of "Forehead Sweat." I thought a lot of it was very funny and thought-provoking, but not on par with "Were-monster." I agree that something felt off and that it went a bit too far in being disrespectful to the characters.
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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #172 on: February 16, 2018, 08:51:12 AM »
+1
I could easily leave everything pre-Ghouli in this season. And the only ep I'd save from S10 is Babylon (though even that doesn't stand up so well two years later). Look, the show shouldn't have come back like this. It's aged, the actors have aged, the world is different, and TV is different. Ghouli and Kitten are good episodes - really good by S10-11 standard - but no, in the clear light of day, they don't compare to any of the classic eps. For what it's worth, I wasn't a fan of GA's big scene in Ghouli either. You could see the acting. Not good. But everyone else was raving about it, so on rewatches I tried to appreciate it more, tried to go with it. I still think DD does a much better job in that ep. Forehead Sweat, the more I think about it, might be the worst episode in the history of the show. Yes, far worse even than Fight Club. There are aspects of it I do like (the idea that Reggie was a third partner everyone forgot about) but the way it was handled was atrocious. It was absolutely lazy writing on DM's part, a sloppy victory lap of elements he's used previously and to better end, most notably in his two Millennium eps. But honestly, it was the all the Trump stuff that really damaged it for me. I hate the guy as much as the next sane person, but that's part of why I don't want what used to be my favorite show becoming a shrine to him, even if it is a shrine of hatred. It's interesting how our thoughts on the show have evolved over the past few weeks in particular. Back when we started the podcast, way back in early 2015, the concept was to celebrate this show we loved and get excited for it coming back. And then S10 happened and we tried our best to make a most of it. But listen to the S10 in review ep and you can hear my unease at the unabashed bashing of the show from Avi, Tiff, and Garrett. I'm trying to find the positive, but they're having none of it. And knowing what S10 turned out to be, we've all approached S11 with a bit more caution. So yeah, we'll take the highs when we get them, and perhaps overdo it, but our perspective has definitely shifted from excitement about new episodes to "please let it die, gently, gracefully." We'll talk more about that in upcoming eps I'm sure. Avi and Keva visited the set during principal filming on the season finale. I probably can't say much, but from what I do know, that last ep sounds a right mess. One thing in particular which I know happens sounds utterly retarded and will anger people who were already upset with a certain choice that was made in S10. We have Tiff and Garrett on to talk about that ep, and Keva's going to help me out trying to keep the conversation kinda balanced and on track. But it'll be a cluster, no two ways about it. Avi, Keva, and I are going to do a more relaxed S11 in review ep after that, so that should be a good, more thoughtful review of the revival and probably a bit of mourning for the show. Anyway, it's nice to take a couple of weeks off from the show, and hopefully we'll get another good few eps before MS4 shits all over everything.
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #173 on: March 16, 2018, 11:49:38 PM »
0
Catching up and just watched "Rm9sbG93ZXJz."

My first impression: I don't know what that was, but it wasn't good.

I'm actually baffled by the effusive praise for this episode. For whatever reason I was rolling my eyes at the gimmick pretty early on. It had the stink of a tiresome standup act. Devices never work, you can never remember your password, technology is out to get us, etc.

Main problems:

- The degree to which absolutely nothing functioned properly
- Mulder and Scully seem so confused and surprised by the technology that it must have all been installed yesterday.
- I get that it's all a joke, but the fact that there is no clear source of a threat took the air out of the episode for me.
- People think Black Mirror is unsubtle? Hoo boy.

Are companies really moving from web support back to phone support? That's news to me. Also, returning something to Amazon is literally the easiest thing you will ever do.

I know I'm taking this too seriously, and I'm probably spoiled by Black Mirror, but there is absolutely no sci-fi rigor in this episode.
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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #174 on: March 19, 2018, 09:06:18 AM »
0
I'm all talked out from the podcast lately, but my general consensus is that fro Ghouli onwards, the episodes have been good/great enough to justify the revival. The early eps just didn't know what to do with these two characters from the past in the modern world, and they oozed Trump-bashing, which I get, but I want to watch XF to escape the real world thank you very much.

Kitten is fine. It's not great. When it was the latest ep I'd watched, I was just thankful for it being as good as it was. It's not a stinker, but let's be honest, it's not a classic either.

Wow, some people really hate Rm9sbG93ZXJz. I didn't. Honestly, I hated the only three eps of Black Mirror's fourth season that I got around to watching. But I agree that this is a sub-par BM ep if you want to think of it in those terms. Trying not to - and trying not to think of it as probably one of the last ever eps we'll ever get of XF - and purely on it's own merits, I really did think it was decent enough. Ignore all the tech ignorance, and it's a pretty fun romp. Not going to make any "best of" lists, but I liked it for what it was. I don't dislike it.

Familiar just does what it says on the tin. It's a spooky mow. Nothing more, nothing less. There's plenty to nitpick, for sure. But it's solid enough to deserve a thumbs up.

Nothing Lasts Forever, I fucking LOVE. We just posted our podcast on it today, and honestly we could have talked about it for so much longer than we did. It's a truly great episode, and I'd go so far to say the best of the revival period. There's a gross mow story here with some interesting kitschy characters, but the meat of things is the growth of the Mulder-Scully relationship and their now mature acceptance and appreciation for their differences from each other, most notably when it comes to faith. It's truly a great episode that I would hold up alongside some of the greats from the show's original run.

This week's (probable series) finale will be godawful, not just by comparison but by its own merits. Brace yourself.
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #175 on: March 21, 2018, 04:12:02 PM »
0
Hang on, the finale is TONIGHT. All of a sudden, I'm not sure I'm ready.
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #176 on: March 22, 2018, 01:07:49 AM »
+1
SPOILS

Well that was pretty much what I expected.

How do you serve in the military and become assistant director of the FBI and when you're faced with an oncoming car you have no idea it's possible to just leap out of its way and can only think to go UNDER it?

"What am I now if I'm not a father?"
Ė something Mulder would never say

Where in this show has it ever been established that Mulder's fatherhood of William is a core part of his identity? Even remotely? Am I wrong?

Besides poor character writing, this episode also had some critical execution problems. That might have been the most dull and drawn-out foot chases in the show's history. I wasn't even sure that I wanted Mulder to catch William. And being an ambivalent observer of a chase is not exactly a thrilling experience. Because William is right ó if you can just explode dudes left and right, what do Mulder and Scully have to contribute to your protection except for constantly leading the baddies to you? William is like, yeah, I get it, you're my biological parents and you want to hang out, and that's cool, but this is really not a good time.

Also, there wasn't one instance of William being someone else that wasn't screamingly obvious and telegraphed from the first frame. No surprises.

My Struggle 2 was still worse, though.
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Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #177 on: March 22, 2018, 09:03:25 AM »
+1
SPOILS

I warned you it was going to be bad.

I knew Monica died, but I didn't realize CC was going to burn the house down and basically take his ball and fuck off home with it.

Where in this show has it ever been established that Mulder's fatherhood of William is a core part of his identity? Even remotely? Am I wrong?

Dude, he like literally explicitly acknowledged it for the first time in 16 years two episodes ago. Keep up.

That might have been the most dull and drawn-out foot chases in the show's history. I wasn't even sure that I wanted Mulder to catch William. And being an ambivalent observer of a chase is not exactly a thrilling experience. Because William is right ó if you can just explode dudes left and right, what do Mulder and Scully have to contribute to your protection except for constantly leading the baddies to you? William is like, yeah, I get it, you're my biological parents and you want to hang out, and that's cool, but this is really not a good time.

Stealing this for the podcast ;)

My Struggle 2 was still worse, though.

This was bad, but in a totally different way. MS2 was like CC had everything turned up to 11 - there was just too much in every regard. Way too much. This time he made the opposite mistake. It reminded me of the NIHT 2-parter that opened S9 and where literally nothing of interest happens and they draw it all out so that there's no suspense and you're left entirely indifferent to everything that happens.

I think I'd already made peace with the fact that this was going to be the end and it would be a crap episode to finish the series. And it was bad. Just not bad in the way I expected. Still, it's done now. The bullet's in the horses' head and now its body is on the way to the glue factory.

Talk about anticlimactic.
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

Sleepless

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Re: The X-Files
« Reply #178 on: March 26, 2018, 09:11:07 AM »
0
Some people have a fear of snakes. That was a somewhat rational fear. And you could do something about it at least. Stay away from long grass and nature documentaries. Easy. Others have a fear of heights. That was manageable too. Avoid tall ladders. But how do you cope when your fear is something you canít avoid? That you have no hope of staying away from? Being afraid of the sky, where are you going to go?

 

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