When ‘The X-Files’ first aired on 10 September 1993, it broke many conventional conceptions for television drama series. It’s popularity suppressed it’s own expectations. Completing 9 seasons (with additional 2 more) successfully, The X-Files is still being broadcasted in many countries around the world even 25 years after it’s journey started.
At the day when the first episode of ‘The X-Files’ was aired, Variety magazine’s reviewer Tony Scott applauded the show for it’s unique script created by Chris Carter. Scott commented, “The artful presentation gives TV sci-fi a boost. The series kicks off with drive and imagination.”
X-Files brought an handsome TV ratings for the Fox Broadcasting Company. It used to be aired all seven days of week then. The show even got it’s own fan community on internet, the service that had started just a few years back. That community was one of the very primary internet fan groups in history. There the X-Files fans used to share their thoughts and ideas about the series. Soon the popularity of the show spread out all over the world, when one by one countries started to broadcast the series in their local channels.
The principal characters of the show were Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson). Both were FBI agents. Mulder believed in paranormal activities, while doctor by profession Scully kept searching for logical explanations. Despite being opposite minded over belief, script-writer Chris Carter had always made sure that the duo show respect for each other’s views.
The interesting part of ‘The X-Files’ was that Chris Carter never gave easy answers for the paranormal incidents happened in the series. That’s why, the episodes used to end up with enough doubts and confusions. Audience speculate about the disclosure of each episode’s mystery, but at the end, the show doesn’t provide any. Even it’s like a puzzle, which category you can put The X-Files in. Some may suggest it’s a crime series, some would say it’s a science fiction, some may tag it as horror show. Look at the patterns of it’s villains. From UFO to notorious murderer, from lethal germs to virus-infected computer! And all these had differentiate The X-Files from other thriller shows.
The tagline of the show was “The truth is out there.” The makers used to portray the theme that US government hides a lot of things from it’s citizens, even from the agents of top government agency like FBI.
In typical one hour television dramas, usually a flood of artists are seen performing. It is done sometimes to gain popularity, sometimes to generate variety, sometimes just to reduce pressure from the lead actors. The X-Files is different here too. In some of it’s episodes, just Fox Mulder (David Duchovny), Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) and Mitch Pileggi (FBI director), with a very few other faces used to pull the entire episodes, and off course not dropping a single drop of popularity.
This series has not only made Duchovny and Gillian famous, also established some other crews in entertainment industry. Episode writer Vince Gilligan (who later wrote ‘Breaking Bad’ and ‘Better Call Saul’), Howard Gordon & Alex Gansa (later wrote ‘Homeland’), Frank Spotnitz (who made record for writing 48 episode scripts). Also actor-writer Darin Morgan and directors Rob Bowman and Kim Manners are in the list.
The initial broadcasting of the show consists 202 episodes in 9 seasons. Later in 2016, two more seasons with 16 episodes were aired. Following the huge success of the TV project, two X-Files movies were also made in later years.