X-Files Revisited

Kidnapped: Dana Scully lies in the trunk of Duane Barry's car.

AS I HAVE been preparing to speak at the upcoming conference in Canton, Ohio, I’ve been spending each night watching 2 or 3 episodes of the X-Files. With our Netflix subscription, we’re able to download and watch all nine series of the remarkable program, in order, with opportunities to pause, backup, and watch again.

As a fan of the innovative series from the very first episode, I’m discovering–to my delight and elocution–that Chris Carter and Company provided those of us who keep our eyes on the media for memes and ‘insider information’ a 9-year feast of goodies. Right now, I’m watching episode 6 of season 2 (X206) called ‘Ascension’. The plot centers around a UFO multiple-abductee named Duane Barry, who himself becomes the abductor by forcibly taking Agent Dana Scully from her home and transporting her across the country to meet the aliens; a trade off–Scully for Barry.

The backstage truth of this episode is that actress Gillian Anderson was nearly full term in her first pregnancy and had to take maternity leave. The intervening Fox Mulder episodes offer a chance to get to know Mulder better, but also cement his intense relationship with Scully. Chris Knowles has done an amazing analysis of the complex nature of this relationship and how it reflects that of Isis (Scully) and Osiris/Horus (Mulder/William).  (You can buy his book on the subject at Amazon.com.)

With this in mind, the title of X206 “Ascension” is a most interesting choice since Anderson is really pregnant as her character is chosen to ascend. Later on, it is her character that gives birth–this time to the product of genetic engineering of Mulder (the father) and perhaps Scully as well. Their child, William (Horus), is born with alien talents–why, Carter even chooses to have Scully give birth in an abandoned building on Christmas. It is during this time period that Mulder (Osiris) is missing, having ‘ascended’.

So, if you’re looking for something to watch these days (rather than the same news day in and day out), take a look at the X-Files. And while you’re at it, pay close attention to the ‘numbers’. There are way too many to mention here, but 666, 13, 11, 1013, and 33 appear over and over again.

Hope to see you in Ohio!

1 Comment

  1. Love the X-Files. My wife and I have also been taking advantage of Netflix on this. We are currently watching season 3. It makes you wonder how Chris Carter managed to stay on top of the memes or even create them before the internet really got up and running full steam.

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