So we didn’t mention it (mostly because we were off busy at No Brand Con), but The X-Files is officially coming back for an eleventh season which is expected to go into production this summer. And while this is expected to air during the 2017-2018 television season, I just find myself asking — is this something that we really want?
Because I’m not sure we do.
The show returned to television last year for a tenth season after being off the air for over a decade, and it was a mixed bag. While it did give us the series singular best episode in my opinion (“Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster”), the rest of the season just wasn’t that great. I mean, we start with an episode that’s designed to “simplify” the mythology (which just ends up making it a bigger mess), and end on a cliffhanger that barely makes sense. In the middle there are a mix of forgettable episodes, and one awkward episode that is simultaneously preachy yet always feels like it’s telegraphing an obvious twist that never comes (“Babylon”).
It’s just not good.
The worst part is that the three worst episodes of the six episode season are the ones written by Chris Carter. You cut his contributions away and you end up with two average episodes and one great one. The man responsible for creating the show is the one dragging it down.
Really, it’s sad. I mean, it’s not that these problems didn’t exist in the show’s initial run, but it’s like Carter hasn’t learned from his mistakes. With season ten he had the opportunity to bring back everything that made the show amazing while leaving the bad parts behind — but he chose not to. Television has changed a lot since The X-Files originally ran, and the bar’s been raised.
Season ten did not come close to meeting it.
But Fox sees money on the table, so they’re bringing the show back for another run. I just don’t have a lot of hope about it though, and while I’m happy that the cliffhanger will be resolved, my expectations aren’t high. It doesn’t matter if you have a world class cast, great directors, or a good supporting writing staff when the guy doing the showrunning is mentally stuck in the 90s.
So I have to ask – do we really want this eleventh season?