Observations on The X-Files Season One: Scully All Day


About a year ago, my boyfriend and I decided to watch The X-Files from the start, and we finally just finished the first season. It didn't take us a year because the show isn't any good - it's actually pretty great - but because you don't have a lot of time to binge watch TV when your boyfriend goes to bed at 9:30pm.

At first I intended to do summaries for each episode, but that just didn't happen. Instead, here are some observations on the entire first season. SPOILER ALERT, they are all about Scully. Double SPOILER ALERT, do I have to tell you there will be spoilers for a show that's 20 years old?


Observations on Season One of The X-Files:

Just in case you were worried that a show about FBI agents investigating the paranormal would be all business and no boobies, fret not, Scully gets into her underwear on the VERY FIRST EPISODE! (It's white cotton granny panties, but still.) The first reveal is unnecessary but justified--she is undressing when she finds spots on her lower back matching those that victims in their cases had. The second time, when she has Mulder look at the spots, is completely ridiculous: instead of just lifting up the back of her shirt like a normal person, she stands there in her underwear again. Thanks, writers for the booty and the fake sexual tension.

Number of times Mulder guides Scully through a door or down the sidewalk by the small of her back even though she is trained to use guns and protect herself and is able to walk: all of them.

Most episodes begin with Mulder throwing a newspaper in front of Scully and expecting her to see the mystical occurrence in an everyday news story. (This gimmick means he also gets to mansplain to her a lot.)

After the number of times Scully had to creep around her dark house with a gun poised, I am amazed she ever goes to sleep. But then, that's why she's Scully and I had a nightlight in my late teens.

Like a true scientist, Scully is always looking for the plausible, realistic explanations to Mulder's raving fantasies. Because the show is what it is, she is usually wrong, but if you separate yourself for a second from the world of the show, she is actually very reasonable: she accepts the evidence she sees in front of her (like a man who stretches his body to fit through tiny spaces and eat peoples' livers) without creating elaborate, mystical explanations to go along with it.

Despite all this, Scully is basically the original Gil Grissom, with the addition of plausibility. While Mulder is running around chasing hunches, Scully does painstaking research and/or disgusting autopsies to find actual evidence about what's going on. She'll walk in with a stack of papers and explanations to match. (As opposed to Grissom who strolled into a CSI investigation and pointed out that the soil they were analyzing only comes from one place in the entire world, linking it perfectly to their suspect.)

UPDATE: How did I forget this the first time around? JANICE is on The X-Files! Janice! As in "Oh... My... God!" from Friends! Okay, the actress' name is Maggie Wheeler and she actually has a totally normal voice. She was acting on Friends. Acting! Way to go, Maggie.


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