If I started watching X-Files with my 13 year old...

…does it make sense and have a conclusion? I watched several eps in the first 6 seasons or so and vaguely understand what happened. But does it have a through-thread and conclusion in the new seasons?

No, you won’t get a conclusion. But that’s OK - 13 is old enough to realize that not every story is wrapped up with a nice bow at the end.

If you watched several episodes previously, you know there is a mix of “monster of the week” standalone episodes, and “mythology” episodes that carry on the long-term story. You could skip the latter if you want. The new seasons continue this, and the mythology episodes are just as incomprehensible as they were back in the original series.

Is there a conclusion? Yes - at least for the initial 9 season run.
Is there a satisfying conclusion - Not at all, unless you really like clip shows.

The conclusion was rendered even less satisfying in the 2016 revival, which basically started with “you know all that stuff you took 9 years to figure out? That was just a head-fake by the bad guys to throw you off what is *really *happening - which is so stupid we’ll throw it out after another 6 episodes with the infamous it-was-just-a-dream cop-out because we really couldn’t figure where to go with such an idiotic idea”. That said, the revival gave us an excellent Monster-of-the-Week episode that redeemed the entire 10th season.

Around the time of the first movie (released between the 5th and 6th seasons, but filmed between the 4th and 5th seasons), it became obvious they were just making it up as they were going and didn’t have an overall master plan. But there were still enough good stand-alone “monster of the week” episodes to keep the show enjoyable.

So, watch for the monster-of-the-week; get intrigued by the early season mythology episodes, but don’t expect them to go anywhere or hold together past the 5th season. As the show became more popular and kept getting renewed, they had to keep adding new mysteries to the mythos to replace the ones that got resolved, and it just became a convoluted mess.

No, there is no conclusion and no, it’s not satisfying.

Thanks all, that’s what i remembered that it just meanders…and is recast…then tries to wrap it up but leaves a cliffhanger of sorts. You’d think the revival would try and wrap it all up.

It has no real ending and the mythology is a mess.

If I were watching with my kids(still too young), I would probably focus on the monster of the week episodes. The alien story line is terrible in the end.

I did like how it all worked out with Mulder’s sister, though. The final episode dealing with that("Closure) is amazing and makes me cry every time.

Or just show him everything and accept that they were trying, but making it all up as they went. :shrugs:

My kid is starting to get into horror stuff and i saw that X-Files has been remastered so i was like…“Heyyyy”

The X-Files is one of those situations where the creator doesn’t understand their own show. The worst episodes of the last two season revival were all written by Chris Carter, and even the actors didn’t like them.

…spoilers for the episode Rm9sbG93ZXJz

[SPOILER]If it was up to me this would have been the very last episode of the X-Files. I loved it to death. It was funny and hilarious and relevant and scary and featured a blobfish. Hardly a word is spoken: but the bond between Mulder and Scully was never stronger.

And the final scene: together in the diner thats how I wanted it to end. Not with a bang (like it did in that incomprehensible final episode) but with a quiet, personal, happy moment.[/SPOILER]

It meandered way before it was recast. I think the plot was big path to nowhere and continuity a contradictory snarl by the end of the third season (I think third; it’s been a while). I quit regularly watching before the theatrical movie release (5th season). But they advertised it as answering questions, so I foolishly went to see it. No questions answered.

Watch the MotW episodes and blow off the myth arc installments entirely. Things in the myth arc don’t make sense and there are no answers. It is possible to have things make no sense and for there to be no answers and for the narrative to still be riveting and a success. Consider the Silent Hill franchise of games and movies, for an example. The fluid nature of reality and there being no definitive answers were incorporated into the franchise and it worked. The X-Files? They just made it up as they went along without bothering, apparently, to try to hew to what they had already done.

It doesn’t make sense or have a conclusion if you watch it with your 13-year-old, or if you watch it with a fox, or if you watch it in a box. Chris Carter & Company kept painting themselves into corners and taking a sledgehammer to the walls to make escape routes until the structure started to totter around them.

I just saw the series conclusion (season 9) and was tempted to start a thread about it because it was the most ineptly plotted and written piece of tripe ever. (Until season 10.) It seemed as though whoever wrote the 2-parter was on Ambien or something stronger and kept forgetting what he/she was doing. Plot lines were started and dropped, characters were brought back for no reason, and the dialog was immensely cringeworthy. Gillian Anderson has many good qualities, but any time she has to sit in a make-believe courtroom and testify about the X-Files in her wooden delivery, it just drives home how out of control and unbelievable the whole mythos has gotten.

Anyway, the whole 9 seasons ends up with Mulder and Scully in a motel room, on the run, realizing that the alien invasion is inevitable, and all they can do is believe in a higher power to stop it. Possibly liver fluke humanoids. Then they cuddle.

I think Season 6’s “Field Trip” was really the last episode. Mulder and Scully never got out of the mushroom patch. The spores gave them visions of escaping, but they never actually did. They got digested. The end.

But them, I’m a fan of taking the non-Sunnydale part of Buffy’s “Normal Again” as canon, and I think DS9’s Far Beyond the Stars was the actual reality, so there’s that.

I definitely agree that any later episode written by Chris Carter makes me sigh since I know it will likely suck.

But…the actors don’t like him? I’ve never heard that. I know Duchovny and Anderson didn’t like each other, especially in the middle part of the show. They don’t like Chris Cater?

I didn’t say they didn’t like him as a person, just the shows he wrote. They were as confused and disappointed by the mythology as we were. That’s why Duchovny left halfway through, and that’s why Anderson decided to go at the end of this past series.

Also, I’m pretty sure that Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny have always liked each other, if anything they likely just got a bit exhausted by the effort of making the show. Working in close quarters for that many years can make anyone a bit punchy.

wow–sir Steve mb…Combining good imagery with Dr Seuss. You should be an author.

(as for the X-files, I tried watching a few episodes when it was new, and simply didn’t understand it. Maybe “the truth was out there”, but they sure didn’t give me enough evidence to try to decide for myself, or even hold my interest.
Like Ghost Hunters who promise to show me something real, but then say “well, somebody slept here and later told us that they heard some noises, so it has to be true.”
The whole concept of the show just didn’t work for me.

I think we all agree there is no cohesive long-term plot and no satisfying conclusion. Although they do try to explain things in the latest season and partially succeed.

On the other hand, it’s groundbreaking television and I still remember the adventures of Mulder and Scully very fondly. It’s well worth watching for any sci-fi/spooky television fan even if it doesn’t have a satisfying conclusion.

I can’t agree. As I said, I was sci-fi fan who stopped watching because of the continuity issues. Sure, some like it, and that’s fine, but any sci-fi fan, nope.

As I grow older, I’ve become more more intolerant of bad continuity or contradictory “revelations.” Especially with dvds, and now steaming and transcripts available all the time, it matters if the events make absolutely no logical sense given past events (or literally cannot be true because we know the character was not present when the event occurred, having seen them elsewhere - another show I abandoned). And TPTB should know fans are discussing and dissecting and can check if this makes sense, given past episodes. Sometime the drama is good enough to keep me in anyway (or was a couple decades ago), but X-Files wasn’t able to do it.

I think the problem is if you are the kind of fan that likes to figure things out. That means you pay attention to the mytharc and add up the clues. But then, one big revelation comes that is completely illogical (or nonsensical) given the prior information you had. You learn there’s no reason to pay attention to the mythology because they don’t have a plan, it’s not going anywhere, and they’ll completely contradict themselves next sweeps season. It really kills the enjoyment (and emotional weight) for me.

As someone said upthread - best to just ignore any mytharc-heavy eps. They’ll only give you a headache and frustration.

…not like each other?

Watch this.

Or this.
The chemistry, the body language, those two "love" each other. Probably a platonic love, but those two have been through a lot, and there really is a bond. I'm sure there used to be tension and disagreements (the first video mentions that) : but this wasn't Bruce Willis/Cybill Shepherd.

From an interview in 1995:


Its why despite all the terrible mythology episodes I still love the X-Files: because I love Mulder and Scully. Its why I love Rm9sbG93ZXJz so much, and why one of my all-time favourite moments was this. (I’m secretly a big softie)