April 27, 2013

Blogging From A to Z April Challenge Day Twenty-Four: X is for X-Files

For those of you who are new to my blog, I am a huge X-Files fan. I was there when the pilot was initially announced and then aired. I remember reading about the show in the local newspaper. Back then Fox was positioning the show as a based-on-reality series, like they got all of the episodes straight out of real FBI X-files.
The review of the pilot that I read in the newspaper grabbed my attention and did not let go. I dutifully waited for the night the pilot was to air and watched it with open-mouthed awe. For those of you who don't know, the pilot sets up the whole relationship between Scully and Mulder, giving viewers a greater appreciation for where the two characters come from. The pilot opens like no other episode: there is no musical intro that we all know. In a way the silent opening is kinda creepy, which was a great way to introduce the series to the world.

I can remember staying home many a Friday night to watch X-Files alone in the dark (just like that Barenaked Ladies song). Some episodes are so incredibly memorable that I can remember all sorts of things from the past just by watching them. The whole conflict between Mulder the believer and Scully the skeptic was something so unique at the time, which I think drew in a lot of viewers.

The Monster of the Week shows, or the one-episode plots where a new creature or human with paranormal powers would be introduced, were a great way to break up the episodic alien invasion storyline that ran throughout the series. And the X-Files was such a dark and serious show, yet it had humor littered throughout the various episodes. It really was the full package deal.

Sadly, it was never meant to last. With the departure of David Duchovny from the series, things just were not the same. It was like watching a dear friend on life support during the final two seasons of the show. At least there were seven solid seasons before that ugly, ugly demise.

I would be lying if I said that the X-Files has not influenced my writing. It has been one of my bigger influences when it comes to my paranormal stories, and I don't think I can ever erase its impact -- not that I would want to. 

And by the way, the X-Files theme song is my phone's main ringtone.

Are you a fan of the X-Files? What are some of your favorite episodes? I keep working on a list of my top 20 episodes, which one day I will publish on this blog.

Oh, and check out this old TV spot advertising the X-Files pilot.


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

My sentiments exactly, especially about the final two seasons. Scully just seemed to cry all the time. But the stand-alone episodes were my favorite.

Lexie C. said...

I LOVED the X-Files and couldn't wait for it every week. It's not been many times that a TV show has captured me like that one. I was so sorry to see it all kind of fall apart.

I think I'd like to see them all again!

Julia King said...

I think you already know I am a huge X-Files fan. I love the show. The last two seasons were ok, but just not the same. Blast, David Duchovny skipping out on most of it. It was what it was. The last episode was a let down for me, though. Shrugs. I was there for the first viewing of the pilot episode and stuck through the rest of the seasons. So, I'm a real X-Filer. haha
I rather enjoyed the funny episodes. The best one was the alien baseballer. I laughed and laughed. Brilliance.

Lynn(e) Schmidt said...

I LOVED the X Files. I can't remember a lot about which episodes I loved the most (I was really young at the time), but I remember not being able to sleep sometimes because I was so scared. I've been considering buying the series on DVD and reliving the magic :) Thank you for this trip down memory lane!

Steven said...

Alex, I always looked forward to those monsters of the week. Some were quite creative!

Lexie, I feel the same way. If you subscribe to Netflix you can watch them all again. They're also all available on DVD.

Julia, the funny ones are great. I am particularly fond of Small Potatoes myself.

Lynn(e), I say get the DVD set and watch it with all of the lights in your house turned off!

Kern Windwraith said...

My sister and I were complete X-Files addicts, and thank goodness we lived together at the time or my heart probably would have stopped in terror. How brave of you to have watched them alone!

Some of the lines from the show entered our sisterly lexicon and never left. "Hate him, hate him, wouldn't want to date him," for example. :)

I agree that the one-off plots stopped the ongoing storyline from getting stale. Great writing in that show--an influence for good in your writing, I'm sure!

Steven said...

Kern, watching X-Files toughened me up quite a bit :)

Arlee Bird said...

It sounds like X Files influenced you like Rod Serling and Twilight Zone influenced me. I only saw a few episodes of X Files. It was a good show, but it was at a time when I wasn't watching much TV.

An A to Z Co-Host
Tossing It Out

Steven said...

Arlee, I watched the Twilight Zone as a kid as well! If you have a chance to check out the X-Files I highly recommend doing so.