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Continuing after the shock ending of Season 5 and the events of the movie, Season 6 of The X-Files is still a very enjoyable season that knows how to thrill. It has its fair share of flaws here and there, sometimes with the tone, but all in all it is still extremely watchable and thrilling, with some neat tricks involving the conspiracy. Spoilers will be following in my review of this sixth season.

Mulder(David Duchovny) and Scully(Gillian Anderson) are back from the finale in Antarctica of the feature-length movie. Their discoveries regarding alien life forms gestating in humans because of The Syndicate’s plans are discredited because of a lack of evidence. X Files Season 6 PosterThey are also taken from under the eye of Skinner(Mitch Pileggi), even though he tries to help them, despite it being against policy. And though The X-Files are reopened after Cigarette Smoking Man(William B. Davis) burned them down , there is a shock in store for the agents. The X-Files have been reassigned to Agent Jeffrey Spender(Chris Owens) and Diana Fowley(Mimi Rogers), much to the chagrin of Mulder who sees Spender as opportunistic and a non-believer and old acquaintance Diana as a backstabber( which isn’t far off the truth). He is right about Spender in one respect, but he is also being used by his father The Cigarette Smoking Man who pushes him to tip Mulder over the edge, but is he having some second thoughts. Skinner is poisoned by a deadly form of nanotechnology controlled by none other than slimy Krycek(Nicholas Lea) , who continues to manipulate him for his own gain. With the prospect of colonization now turning to full on take over of the human species, doomsday is around the corner. The return of Cassandra Spender(Veronica Cartwright), who is now a hybrid after being tested on, heralds The Syndicate’s plans for colonization, which don’t go to plan. The Syndicate DestroyedAlien rebels, who we have glimpsed in the past seasons, put a stop to the plan and kill the Syndicate members. Cigarette Smoking Man and Diana manage to escape, while Cassandra, as an alien-human hybrid perishes. Cigarette Smoking Man gets enraged when he sees that Spender has betrayed him after realizing that his father has been using him all along and Spender is seemingly killed by his father. Mulder and Scully are eventually assigned back to The X-Files, but not without danger. Although the Syndicate’s plans have failed, the discovery of more alien life forms and activity involving a new mythology puts both agents on a course filled with surprises, especially in a dangerous case for Mulder.

I think that with Season 5 and the movie, The X-Files was at its peak and nothing could touch it. Season 6 is still very enjoyable, but you can begin to see some signs of fatigue in it, which is only to be expected because a show can’t run for such a long time and not expect to hit a road bump or two. For starters, I do usually like the way The X-Files has a controlled sense of humour, but there are numerous occasions here where it veers out of control and becomes too much. Some of the plots of certain episodes also feel a bit rehashed and uninspired, like ‘Alpha’ and ‘Trevor’ that don’t really show the series in the best and most engaging light.

And now I’ll discuss the positives that Season 6 has to offer, which is still numerous and inventive. I particularly enjoyed the conclusion to the main conspiracy, as everything was built up so effectively and the ringing together of it all was done with excellence. And the fact that a new conspiracy is born is further reason to keep watching as it can open up,a whole other set of possibilities. There is some excellent plotting and writing to be found and when it works, it really works wonders. Season 6 has no shortage of ambitions and various episodes are deserving of praise. ‘Triangle’ represents the show at some of its most inventive and spellbinding as Mulder finds himself journeying back in time to the war on a doomed ship caught in the Bermuda Triangle, where he encounters people who resemble modern counterparts such as Scully and Cigarette Smoking Man. X Files TriangleEmploying ambitious editing and camerawork that gives the appearance of many continuing shots that never seem to cut, it gives the episode the required dreamlike effect that is just outstanding. An accidental body swap for Mulder and a government brought on by an investigation into Area 51 has a real wit to it in the two parts of ‘Dreamland’. The mid-season two parts of ‘Two Fathers’ and ‘One Son’ are unforgettable as they draw the Syndicate mythology that has been built so well to a close with betrayals, shocks and answers all given. The wonderfully structured and remarkably tense ‘Monday’ centres on a time loop that only one woman seems to know of as she tries to warn Mulder and Scully of imminent death before the day repeats itself again. Scully and Mulder Season 6 Investigation‘Milagro’ uses an unique concept of an obsessed writer’s work coming to murderous life and becoming entwined with desire for an unsuspecting Scully to fashion a creepy and inventive episode.

The cast is once more delivering stellar work, having grown so much into the characters by this point in the show’s run. David Duchovny rocks it as Mulder, whose humour and often questionable antics are balanced with a serious and undying determination, that could very well lead to something bad for him. Mulder and Scully Season 6Likability is definitely on the side of Duchovny as it shines through in his work here. Gillian Anderson continues to shine as the pragmatic and plucky Scully, who is a lot more open to possibilities than ever before, yet still retaining scepticism when required. Imbued with an undercurrent of emotion and filled with a steely strength and resolve, Anderson captures the character of Scully so well, even showing us a fun side that is very delightful to see. The chemistry between the two is palpable as anything. I love the way that they can just look at each other and without words convey so much emotions that you feel the special bond between them that has been growing since the day they met. There are more than a few hints that a romantic connection is being formed, without either acknowledging it which makes it more intriguing to watch their interactions with one another.Mitch Pileggi as Skinner is featured a lot more and used for an intriguing story of him being manipulated by Krycek, with the fear that he can just flick a switch and render him near dead in a matter of seconds. It was great to see one of my favourite characters having something very integral to do and Pileggi presents Skinner’s plight with assurance and credibility. As the used and easily lead Spender, Chris Owens is marvellous at showing how he is so heavily manipulated and a such an unsuspecting victim in all of this that he will eventually meet a possibly bad end. As usual, William B. Davis cuts a fine figure as the main villain, and he still has the sinister presence that burns into the mind whenever he appears. Nicholas Lea is somewhat underused this time around as the nefarious Krycek, and I would have liked to have scene more of the weasel like character that is a continuous thorn in everyone’s side. Diana FowleyHopefully Season 7 can give him more to do. Thankfully in the backstabbing stakes there is Mimi Rogers as the sultry and double-crossing Fowley, who Scully is right not to trust from the very beginning but is still good at turning Mulder’s head. And I can’t forget to mention the wonderful Veronica Cartwright who reappears as Cassandra and gives her a tragic impact that is deeply felt.

  1. The Beginning – B
  2. Drive – B+
  3. Triangle – A+
  4. Dreamland – A
  5. Dreamland II – A
  6. How the Ghosts Stole Christmas – B+
  7. Terms of Endearment – C-
  8. The Rain King – D
  9. S.R. 819 – A
  10. Tithonus – B
  11. Two Fathers – A
  12. One Son – A+
  13. Agua Mala – C-
  14. Monday – A
  15. Arcadia – B+
  16. Alpha – E
  17. Trevor – E
  18. Milagro – A+
  19. The Unnatural – A
  20. Three of a Kind – B+
  21. Field Trip – B+
  22. Biogenesis – B+

So while there are senses of tiredness that can be glimpsed during the unfolding events, The X-Files Season 6 continues to make for cracking and ambitiously drawn television, despite some flaws along the way. Some of it may not be vintage X-Files, but the show still knows how to hit the mark and do it with panache.