It has been a while since we last saw our favorite paranormal investigating FBI agents, but against all odds, they’re back. The new miniseries simply titled The X-Files (called Season 10 by some) brings Agents Mulder and Scully together again to thwart aliens, monsters and conspirators alike.
The two have been out of action since the 2008 post series film, X-Files: I Want to Believe. Things have only slightly changed since the non-mythology focused movie. Except for the detail that. Scully left her relationship with Mulder. That may be huge, but it’s brushed aside in favor of the duo getting back into investigating a new alien abduction victim.
They’re alerted to this by a TV/Internet personality named Tad O’Malley. He’s basically like if Bill O’Reilly and Alex Jones did the fusion dance and turned into a younger, much better looking guy. It’s fun to see Mulder poke fun at O’Malley’s conservative politics as Mulder has always seemed to be apolitical.
The former agents meet Sveta, an alien abductee whose experiences parallel Scully’s. Through a series of flashbacks and discoveries, a new conspiracy is uncovered. New mysteries are opened and the X-Files is reborn.
‘My Struggle’ looks and feels like an episode of the original series. The camera angles, the dialogue, the lighting, everything feels right when wading into this episode. This should be a no brainer, but this is something that ‘I Want to Believe’ didn’t achieve. Movies and television are two vastly different mediums, but it’s nice to feel at home from the get go.
The X-Files miniseries really benefits from the jumps in special effects since 2002. The effects seem to be spread equally between practical and CGI, which strikes a perfect balance. None of the effects stand out as fake. It never takes you out of the story.
David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson slip right back into their roles from the series. Though tragic by some fans’ standards, the break up of their relationship makes this episode feel like an older X-Files episode since they aren’t reminding us how in love they are with each other. This wasn’t a bad thing in the final episode of the original series or in ‘I Want to Believe’, it just stands out as something that alters their dynamic. This series sees that dynamic restored. If we learn in more detail why they split, the resolution to that storyline could be a dramatic moment, but only time will tell.
Mitch Pileggi returns as Walter Skinner, but is only barely in this episode. Seeing as his name is in the beginning credits (which are nearly identical to the original credits), he should have a bigger role as the series rolls on. The scene he’s in is pretty cool, but seeing him giving Mulder and Scully assignments in his office will put the icing on the nostalgia cake.
The only problem with this episode is that it can get a little dull. While the highs are high, the lows are uneventful. There isn’t even one moment in ‘My Struggle’ where Mulder or Scully are in danger. They don’t even really investigate anything, they just sort of are shown things and Scully runs a test on Sveta. The point of the episode may be that if Mulder and Scully had been investigating, the multiple deaths at the end of the episode might not have happened. This isn’t explicitly said, but that could be one take away.
The new X-Files miniseries starts off pretty strong with Mulder and Scully getting back into the swing of things. Though it can be a little slow at times, the good things in the episode make it more than worth while. Mysteries and conspiracies are uncovered. ‘My Struggle’ does what it’s supposed to. It left us wanting more. The truth is still out there.