‘X-Files’ Boss Says That Insane, Controversial Premiere Twist Was Always Planned
The X-Files have officially re-opened and the story remains as crazy as ever. Now that Wednesday’s Season 11 premiere thoroughly reversed the 2016 finale and dropped one whopper of a twist about Scully and the Smoking Man, Chris Carter tells angry fans that they’d always intended as much.
You’re warned of full spoilers for The X-Files’ latest premiere, “My Struggle III,” but it seems TV hasn’t outgrown the “it was all a dream” card. Where the 2016 finale left us on an impossible cliffhanger of worldwide plague, a dying Mulder and an alien spacecraft, the new season quickly walked things back to the point that Scully was the one in need of hospitalization, having experienced the prior finale as a future vision. You’re not alone in feeling a bit cheated, but creator Chris Carter tells Entertainment Weekly the ruse will feel a bit more in-step after Season 11’s finale:
If you look at how I staged the scene in Mulder’s office, the way I staged the [Season 10 finale] scenes on the bridge with the spacecraft hovering above Scully, you can see that was part of a plan. The camera pushes right into her eye at both ends of the show, and it was all of a piece.
Are you concerned that that fans will feel like they were denied real resolution on that scenario?
You know, it’s playing with the story, the characters and the history of the characters I hope in an interesting way that will be satisfying — not necessarily in the immediate future but it will make sense once we get to this season’s finale.
But that wasn’t the worst of it. The episode’s biggest bombshell saw the ever-scheming Smoking Man claiming parentage over William, having impregnated Scully with “alien science” in an earlier Season 7 episode. Fans were naturally upset that an uncomfortable instance of the Smoking Man drugging Scully was made worse with forced impregnation (maybe time for some women writers, guys), even as Carter claims the reveal was intended before the original series’ cancellation. As to whether the Smoking Man is indeed William’s biological father, Carter didn’t have the greatest explanation:
No. He’s the figurative father if he’s not the actual father. He didn’t rape Scully. He impregnated her with science … It adds to the characters in an interesting emotional way. And because the audience is now in on this truth, and Mulder and Scully are not, these revelations are huge for this show because they’re huge for the characters. Mulder and Scully’s life history, both professional and personal, are the heart of the show.
Either way, the new X-Files run will follow the prior revival with standalone episodes throughout, and return to mythology in the finale. Even if it all makes sense (or seems less gross) by then, should Carter have opened with such continuity upsets?
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