The X-Files Teases Us With A Few Familiar Faces

By  · Published on October 20th, 2015

For the past several years, David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson have used social media as a public forum to express their love of all things The X-Files. And we – suckers for an unrequited love story that we are – ate it up. We rejoiced in the resurgence of Anderson on television in The Fall and Hannibal and marveled at the enduring friendship between the two actors; despite all that, though, the prospect of any (worthy) additions to The X-Files family seemed like a pipe dream. I mean, it’s not like we all went to see The X-Files: I Want to Believe. The proof is right there in the box office numbers.

So maybe we’re drawn to unrequited love. Maybe our desire to bring back every cancelled television show is our own temporary triumph over death. And then we watch the teaser and see Duchovny and Anderson and Pileggi running through their paces, and holy crap, everyone, X-Files is back.

While many people may be asking if we needed more X-Files in 2015 – a fair question, if one devoid of any fun whatsoever – the most appealing aspect of the miniseries will undoubtedly be the ability to streamline some of the show’s bloated narrative. X-Files ran for nine seasons and two films; that would be a fair amount of mythology for any show to revisit, let alone one that focused on grand conspiracies and shifting loyalties of smoking men in back rooms. These days I’m hard-pressed to remember what happened to each of the various cast members without leaning heavily on the show’s Wikipedia page. And this teaser trailer – short as it is – seems to understand us.

Sure, it’s just a teaser – thirty seconds of footage from six new episodes of television – but it also reinforces our own memories of what made the show so great. Maybe there will be alien bounty hunters and shape-shifters; maybe we’ll remember all the reasons we fell out of love with the show and bury the recordings in a dark corner of our DVR like it is a photograph of one of our exes. But for today? There’s Mulder. There’s Scully. There’s Skinner. All we need is a quick shot of Scully holding her cross or Mulder watching an adult video and we’re back watching a show that seemed too impossibly frightening and graphic for television. I don’t know if I want to believe, but for the first time in a while, I’m open to the possibility.

Matthew Monagle is an Austin-based film and culture critic. His work has appeared in a true hodgepodge of regional and national film publications. He is also the editor and co-founder of Certified Forgotten, an independent horror publication. Follow him on Twitter at @labsplice. (He/Him)