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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » Were the X-Files good science fiction? (Page 2)

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Author Topic: Were the X-Files good science fiction?
mackillian
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You didn't, Olivet, but I did. >_<
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Olivet
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I'm willing to bet yours never had amorous squid in them, so I'm sure you have nothing to be ashamed of. *pat,pat*
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graywolfe
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It might be good. Maybe time away from doing the stuff could produce something special. I didn't think the first film was special, but it wasn't bad, I thought it was solid anyway, just nothing special.
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the_Somalian
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Who else really likes that one episode "Triangle," with the ship near the Bermuda triangle, and how the episode's scenes were comprised of seemingly unbroken tracking shots? Absolutely memorable camera-work, especially when Scully is running the FBI building...

my two cents

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graywolfe
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That was a classic, I think they were doing that as sort of a tribute to "Rope" right?
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Bella Bee
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quote:
memorable camera-work
maybe, but I remember thinking the story was pretty weak and overly confusing. It's been years, though.

I'd go and see a new X-Files movie, because having suffered through the last few seasons, the movie probably couldn't actually be worse.

But what I'm really secretly hoping for is 'X-Files: The Next Generation' in about fifteen years time, where some new people get allocated to the X-Files, fight ghost/mutant/alien crime, get some actual answers which make sense (because this time the showrunners have decided what's really going on before they start filming), and where all the things which once went wrong with the original series get put right...

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graywolfe
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My girlfriend never watched the show, and today while scanning through the vcr I came across the Tony Shaloub, Dark Matter episode, figured that could be a nice classic to maybe start her out with. Loved that one, and watching it again today reminded me of how much I used to love this show (and Mr. X for that matter).

Looking back, it, The Simpsons, and Seinfeld were the only tv show's that got entire frat, sorority, co-op, and dorm rooms to sit together during tv night. I still remember sitting with 20 other people to watch most of those shows (not Simpsons), when I was at Cal back in the day. It was the essence of "must see tv" the cliche that nbc never lived up to for the most part, beyond Seinfeld, during the nineties.

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Occasional
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I thought that season 1-4 was setting up a great puzzle that still seemed to have a few pieces missing, but you could see a picture. I thought the about-face of season 5 was brilliant as it put the whole puzzle into question. I mean, maybe Scully was partly right and Mulder was partly right.

The movie was ok, and it seemed to refocus the season 5 ending toward the 1-4 info. However, 6-7 was an uncomfortable unraveling that completely messed the puzzle up and forced a picture that didn't make sense. It was still fun, but just because the writing was worthwile. Of course, 8-9 did not exist and never will. It didn't even try to acknowledge all the 1-5 info. and just went over the edge.

At least, that is how I saw it. The stand alones were good or bad on their own merits.

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graywolfe
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I treat the last 2-3 seasons in a very similar fashion, there simply isn't a reason to take those seasons seriously beyond a handful of stand alone episodes here and there (there is one that focuses entirely on Gillian that I think she directed that dealt with coincidence or fate or something of that sort (it's been a while) that I thought was deeply interesting, but again a huge exception when it came to those last few miserable seasons).

Still I prefer to hold onto the first four or so seasons when I evaluate it. It's one of those shows that faltered so badly towards the end that it overwhelmed it's fantastic early years (John Larroquette had a solo show he created in I think the '93-'94, or '94-'95 season, in which the first season was astonishingly good, just fantastic, dark but deeply funny, cynical, but with a little bit of heart, then of course the network, or producers or maybe Larroquette's ego or something got involved and in comes the love interest and conventional comedy and a classic show was absolutely ruined, these things unfortunately happen a lot). Even if it tailed off down the stretch nothing will make me forget that bright period from about '93-'97 or thereabouts for the X-Files, just truly fantastic television. Alas, all things must pass, as Harrison sang.

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the_Somalian
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quote:
Originally posted by Occasional:
I thought that season 1-4 was setting up a great puzzle that still seemed to have a few pieces missing, but you could see a picture. I thought the about-face of season 5 was brilliant as it put the whole puzzle into question. I mean, maybe Scully was partly right and Mulder was partly right.

The movie was ok, and it seemed to refocus the season 5 ending toward the 1-4 info. However, 6-7 was an uncomfortable unraveling that completely messed the puzzle up and forced a picture that didn't make sense. It was still fun, but just because the writing was worthwile. Of course, 8-9 did not exist and never will. It didn't even try to acknowledge all the 1-5 info. and just went over the edge.

At least, that is how I saw it. The stand alones were good or bad on their own merits.

I think that on the whole, the alien/conspiracy arc of the show never amounted to more than intrigue, and the only value it might have provided was the backround for many great stand-alone episodes. I'm guessing Chris Carter never had the whole thing worked out, so it was probably all improv--hence why the show never seemed eager to let us in on what was going on.

I'm sensing the same things about Lost. [Grumble]

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graywolfe
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I think you're right about lost. I disagree about the angle on the X-Files, I think they had a nice idea, but like a lot of writers, the pleasure was in the writing of it, not in the design of it, and so they never actually planned out how it would play out to its conclusion and ended up wrapping it up with a "half-arsed, we suck" deal ie the "no clue how to wrap it up blue light special. I didn't think it was filler (as it seems like you were suggesting maybe?)as the early episodes in that arc were very good, that suggested to me that they had a really interesting idea, but unfortuately like it appears with "Lost," no coherent way to address the resolution of said story arc.

My guess is the second movie may be a way of changing all that and redesigning the whole conspiracy idea (the whole of 9/11 has to impact the thinking in the writing I imagine in terms of tone, if not explicit design).

Their approach, to me, anyway, along with Lost, was apparently the opposite of John Doe's design. In a small piece in ew two years ago, the writers and creator of the show explained, that John wasn't a government experiement, or a part of a conspiracy (and the guy who ran the bar, and was exposed as the leader of the group that killed his friend, was apparently using mission impossible styled face wrap), but rather had died and come back, and the direction of that line would later explain that when you die, all answers to all questions are answered, hence his abilities and knowledge after coming back from death.

[ January 11, 2007, 02:23 AM: Message edited by: graywolfe ]

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