‘X-Files’ clip reveals intrigue, emotion — and unintentional weirdness

Mulder and Scully in a scene from the 2008 movie "The X-Files: I Want To Believe." | Fox
Mulder and Scully in a scene from the 2008 movie "The X-Files: I Want To Believe." | Fox

Mulder and Scully in a scene from the 2008 movie “The X-Files: I Want To Believe.” | Fox

Television critics at press tour in Beverly Hills Thursday got a sneak peek of the new “X-Files,” the much anticipated six-episode “event series” returning to Fox early next year.

The clip involved a heated scene between FBI special agents Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) and Fox Mulder (David Duchovny). Here’s what went down:

A frantic Scully pulls up to a house at night. Mulder meets her on the front porch. They’re clearly not a couple anymore. She refers to herself as his friend and physician.

Mulder launches into a speech about how they’ve been deceived for years and he’s “finally figured it out.” He says that Tad O’Malley — a conservative internet newscaster played by Joel McHale — is right in his belief that “this is not an alien conspiracy.”

Scully tries to talk him down, warning that his beliefs could be his undoing.

At first, I thought this might be a stunt clip made for critics’ amusement. The way Scully and Mulder were interacting seemed overly ginned up and fake, like a long set up to a joke. Apparently I wasn’t the only one in the room who felt this way.

Instead of a punch line, the sneak peek ended with a glimpse of a new character: alien-abduction victim Sveta, played by Annet Mahendru from “The Americans.” She’s looming in the background, behind the home’s screen door.

“She’s the key to everything,” Mulder tells what appears to be a crestfallen Scully. “Sveta is the key.”

Annet Mahendru, pictured here for her role on "The Americans." | FX

Annet Mahendru, pictured here for her role on “The Americans.” | FX

We’ll see. It’s wheels up on the new series Jan. 24.

“The X-Files” debuted on Fox in the fall of 1993, chronicling Scully and Mulder’s investigations into unexplained cases — the so-called X-Files involving paranormal phenomena. It lasted for nine seasons and ranks as one of broadcast television’s longest running sci-fi series. Original creator Chris Carter is back at the controls for this next chapter.

 

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