Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The X-Files: New Spoilers (Potentially) Elaborate on the Six-Years Backstory

I can't begin to explain how impressed I am that Chris Carter and the X-Files: I Want to Believe team have really (knock on wood) succeeded in keeping the movie details so under wraps. The movie opens in thirty days, and we have surprisingly little to go on. I'm starting to get excited for the film, but as a spoiler enthusiast, I'm also starting to get nervous.

Yesterday, I sent the following frantic email to Mae:

"I'm getting more and more scared that Amanda Peet & Mulder are going to be, like, dating in this movie. With the knowledge that Mulder and Scully are, at least at the beginning of the movie, not working together/spending time together, I'm growing more and more concerned that there's 'someone else.' And you know how much I hate triangles. And Amanda Peet. She's completely untalented."

That fear has passed, but the uncertainty associated with being an X-Files enthusiast lingers.

As the fandom grasps at spoiler straws, I was directed to this article. (Someone posted the link in a comment on XFilesNews.com.)

The article is framed oddly, as if written from the perspective of a spoiler-fearing producer, and ends with an entirely bogus claim (that Scully has grown a beard and works weekends at the circus). It's clever, and it does make you roll your eyes at the absurdity of the spoiler crackdown—have they confused themselves with the real FBI?

Seriously.

Although in this world of trust no one, I can't be sure if the article is legit or not, the bulk of the spoilery part seems believable enough. (Also, the following paragraph has been omitted from the article, further encouraging me to believe it's for real. However, if I wanted people to believe my fake spoilers were real, I'd put them up long enough for everyone to see, then tell everyone that Fox demanded I take them down.)

"Mulder [sits] in his home's cluttered office eating sunflower seeds and clipping out a news article to pin on his wall of conspiracies when Scully walks in… Mulder greets Scully with a windy speech of psycho-babble about pre-cognitive ability only to serve the punchline, "But who believes in that crap anymore?" Mulder is a fugitive - a paranoid, angry one at that who's still rankled at the F.B.I. for discrediting a decades' work. Scully [worries] about Mulder's mental health from living in long-term isolation [and offers] Mulder a pardon from the government if he helps to find a missing F.B.I. agent."

We'd been thinking, of course, that our favorite agents were going to have to either (A) strike a deal or (B) live like the Unabomber after the events of the series finale. Living out in the woods is all well and good, I suppose, except for that eventually you need money. Now, I don't doubt that one or both of them had a somewhat large secret stash of money for just such a situation, but you need at least one income. It's not like either of them knew how to garden, and where were they supposed to live?

So I think the situation described here is believable. After a certain period of time, Scully goes back aboveground and either strikes a deal or lies. We might assume that Kersh is still working for the bureau, so Scully could use the same excuse he used for how Mulder got out of federal prison or Kersh could just help her figure it out.

She's working at Quantico, I would guess. You know how on Alias, Sydney Bristow likes to go to the train station and think, or how on Lost, Kate likes to stand in the surf and "sink"? Well, Scully's version of "sinking" is working at Quantico. She sometimes likes to hide behind her "I'm a medical doctor" BS when she doesn't want to face up to the fact that, dammit, she's an FBI agent. She's working at Quantico and every once in a while, she goes to visit Mulder wherever he is in Virginia and they hang out. [Mae: "She brings him groceries and shit." Caroline: "Groceries and sex." Mae: "Yeah, that's what I was implying."]

And then something comes up and she thinks the bureau could use Mulder's expertise on the paranormal. Now, there are a couple of possibilities here. It's possible that everyone at the FBI knows that she spends her weekends in the country with her fugitive husband. They all just choose to leave him alone, because they think he's just legitimately crazy. Or because somebody's come to terms with the fact that one of those military higher-ups was an alien and Mulder really saved everyone's asses again, but they still can't, you know, tell the whole truth or anything. Either that or Dana K. Scully takes it upon her awesome self to broker a deal between the FBI and their most wanted.

Wouldn't it be amazing if this was a line: "Nobody down here but the FBI's Most Wanted"? I know that Spotnitz or somebody said that the new movie wasn't going to be two hours of nostalgia, but come on. I would love that.

Also, having seen the clip shown at the LA Film Festival last weekend, this scenario would explain why Scully feels responsible for getting Mulder involved in this case.



It makes sense.

I'm trying not to be a shipper nerd about this movie. There's so much more to The X-Files than the Mulder/Scully romance, which was always a downplayed element of the show. I was just on Wikiquote looking at quotes from "The Truth," and if we hadn't seen the kiss or the cuddle, their dialogue is just as devoted-friend-love as it had always been. "This is what I'm fighting for, Mulder--you and me," is sweet, but it's no more true post-hookup than it was in season two. It's part of what I love about them. Jim and Pam's relationship is based on friendship on pranks; Jack and Kate's is based on survival and salvation; Derek and Meredith's is based on sex; but Mulder and Scully's is based on trust.

It's an amazing convention in a show that tells us to trust no one.

So I'm not expecting--or wanting--grand romantic gestures. What I am expecting from the pair is the same style of interaction I watched for nine years. I don't need them to get married or have (more) babies, even though that forces me to quell my desire for ship-families. I'll suppress those feelings because, for these guys, it runs a terrible risk of being out of character and cliche.

Okay, I should just stop talking about what I want. With only thirty days to go--less than, actually, since I'll probably see it at midnight on the 25th--I can wait.

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