Friday, March 27, 2015

A Pair of "X Files" View Lists

The X Files is probably my favorite series of all time. But like many series, it took it a little while to find its stride. Once you get into season 4, just about every episode is a classic that needs to be watched. At east through season 7, that is. But, for those looking to get into The X Files before it makes its comeback, here are two lists. One of episodes in the first 3 seasons that are recommended for those looking to get into the series. Then another of absolute “must sees” for those who don’t want to be overcome with the sheer magic of watching the whole series.

“Starter Episodes”

1. Pilot (Season 1 Episode 0)

This is a must see to set the concept up, and to see where Scully and Mulder meet. Plus it is really good.

2. Squeeze (Season 1 Episode 2)

It didn’t take long to get a genius, creepy episode

3. Tooms (Season 1 Episode 20)

The antagonist from Squeeze returns, and we meet Skinner. (We skipped E.B.E. which introduced the Lone Gunmen, who are also important reoccurring characters.)

4. The Host (Season 2 Episode 2)

X is introduced, and we get one of the scarier monsters of the series.)

5. Die Hand die Verletzt (Season 2 Episode 14)

A personal favorite, this one addresses a pertinent cultural phenomenon of the time, and has a wonderful villain.

6. Humbug (Season 2 Episode 20)

I think this one took the series to another level, both story-wise, but also in the cultural consciousness.

7. Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose (Season 3 Episode 4)

One of the better pieces of writing in television history.

8. War of the Coprophages (Season 3 Episode 12)

Funny and scary at the same time.

9. Jose Chung’s “From Outer Space” (Season 3 Episode 20)

This vies for the spot of my favorite episode of tv.

10. Talitha Cumi (Season 3 Episode 24)

I have mostly skipped the mythology episodes on this list. But if you get this far, you may be compelled to go back and see all the series so far. This has deep ideas written into the script. You might be driven to read some Dostoyevsky.

“10 More Must Sees”

1. Bad Blood (Season 5 Episode 12)

Vampires in a small Texas town, and brilliant writing again.

2. How the Ghosts Stole Christmas (Season 6 Episode 8)

Wonderful writing, wonderful acting, creepy and meaningful.

3. Musings of a Cigarette-Smoking Man (Season 4 Episode 7)

A trip through American history, conspiracy, and how the show claims it all went down.

4. Signs and Wonders (Season 7 Episode 9)

A look at faith, religion, good and evil. A wonderful discussion starter.

5. Post-Modern Prometheus (Season 5 Episode 6)

A bizarre look at the Frankenstein myth, wonderfully and artistically done.

6. Hollywood A.D. (Season 7 Episode 19)

This one is for those who have made it this far into the series and loved it. It is self-referential and silly, but fun.

7. Small Potatoes (Season 4 Episode 20)

Another comedic episode that delivers.

8. Terms of Endearment (Season 6 Episode 6)

Bruce Campbell in a Rosemary’s Baby redux.

9. Unusual Suspects (Season 5 Episode 1)

The Lone Gunman feature in an episode that takes place before the series began.

10. Arcadia (Season 6 Episode 13)

Mulder and Scully go undercover as a married couple in a town with a bizarre religious approach to H.O.A.s.

If I were to do a list of the remaining episodes that rank a 10 out of 10, it would have 49 entries, so we'll save that for another day.

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