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The X-Files - Series of the 90s

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The X-Files - Series of the 90s


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Part of The X-Files franchise and created by screenwriter Chris Carter, this sci-fi series originally aired on Fox from September 10, 1993 to May 19, 2002 for 202 episodes of 44-48 minutes each divided into 9 seasons.

The show was a hit for the Fox network, it covered subjects like the public mistrust of governments and large institutions, embracing conspiracy theories and spirituality as it centered on efforts to uncover the existence of extraterrestrial life.

Although the FBI denies their existence, it has long been rumored that the Bureau had a name for cases which, due to the involvement of unexplainable phenomena, could not be solved. Until a lucky break or reasonable explanation came around, those cases were filed away under the letter “X.” So in 1992, Chris Carter, sensing a renewed curiosity in paranormal entertainment, used the legendary FBI paranormal investigation department as a springboard for the new series.

Carter combined his obsession for conspiracy with his love of the cult favorite 1970’s series Kolchak: The Night Stalker in making his long-running series.

Carter, banking on his audience’s obsession for unsolvable mysteries and complex conspiracies, immediately teased viewers in the opening sequence of every show with one of two enigmatic taglines, “The Truth Is Out There,” and “Trust No One,” phrases that soon would be adopted by the public to be used in everyday life.

Agent Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson), a young FBI agent forensics specialist and super-cynic, was assigned to work with maverick agent Fox "Spooky" Mulder (David Duchovny), on a series of unsolvable cases. To Mulder, Scully was an interloper, sent by the forces-that-be to debunk his work. 

The FBI hierarchy, afraid of what Mulder might discover, sent Scully in to keep watch over and hamper the progress of Mulder's investigations. Slowly but surely, however, Scully was won over by Mulder, due to episode after episode of evidence that suggested the paranormal did in fact exist and that Mulder might not be crazy after all.

Also believing his sister to have been abducted by aliens, Mulder was obsessed with finding her, and had to investigate the paranormal to achieve that goal.

Standing in the path of Mulder’s quest was the ever-present Cigarette-Smoking Man (William Bruce Davis), named like that for the ubiquitous presence of cigarettes in his possession. His pan-optic surveillance of Mulder’s activities gave him dominion over every investigation. If Mulder got too close to discovering something that made his bosses feel uncomfortable, Cigarette-Smoking Man simply made his part to stop Mulder.

Mulder and Scully made nice foils for each other, a right-brain and left-brain combination of personalities that made them perfectly complementary, and it wasn’t long before the characters developed a deep friendship and even a subtle romantic tension.

They had occasional help from Assistant Director Walter Skinner (Mitch Pileggi), who always was able to garner obscure information from a trio of high-tech computer geeks known as The Lone Gunmen, who seemed to be available day or night, ready to go with conspiracy info.

Season 1 moved from episode to episode with little in the way of common story threads connecting them; but by season 2 and 3 most episodes contained threads that were all connected to a common web of conspiracy.

After six seasons (and one X-Files movie) of shocks, enigmas and conspiracies, star David Duchovny (Mulder) decided to leave his The X-Files role. In the fall of 2000, Mulder was abducted himself, and though he would make occasional appearances in later episodes, Scully needed a new partner.

Robert Patrick, took that place as Special Agent John Dogget, now partly consumed with the search for Mulder.

A series that taught us that "The Truth Is Out There," and that you must "Trust No One" even when you say to yourself "I Want to Believe."

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