The X-Files, on FOX
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The X-Files originally aired from 1993 to 2002 (with theatrical films released in 1998 and 2008). Then, in 2016, the show returned for what I originally thought would be a limited series (referred to as "season 10"). I initially put my review of that on a separate page in my "limited series" section, but later decided to move it to the same page as my review of the original series, in "supernatural & paranormal." Then in 2018, the show returned for an eleventh season. At that point, I decided to put my review of both seasons on a separate page, though still in the "supernatural/paranormal" section, rather than "limited series." (If I ever do get around to re-watching the first nine seasons and writing up a more comprehensive review, it's possible I'll break that up into separate pages, as well.)
Season Ten (6 episodes)
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In the first episode, Mulder and Scully meet a right-wing conspiracy theorist named Tad O'Malley (Joel McHale), who has a popular online show. Because of him, they go back to the FBI, and Skinner reopens the long-closed X-Files division. (For years, Mulder had been in hiding, and I have no idea how he supported himself, because I'm pretty sure he didn't have a job. Meanwhile, Scully had been working at a hospital since leaving the FBI. And now I kind of get the impression she kept that job when she rejoined the FBI, though I'm not sure how she finds time to work both jobs.) Anyway, just like the old days, there are mythology eps and monster of the week eps, as well as some eps that were more humorous. I think by far the best episode of the season was the third one, "Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster." I thought it worked very well on a number of levels, though mostly it was a humor episode. (But it's also a very polarizing episode; some people, like me, loved it, while others hated it.)
Episode five, "Babylon," introduced a pair of young FBI agents, Kyd Miller (Robbie Amell) and Liz Einstein (Lauren Ambrose). Miller is a true believer, like Mulder, while Einstein is a skeptic and a doctor (with red hair, even), like Scully. Though Einstein is a lot less willing to believe any of the weird fringe stuff than Scully ever was. Anyway, they also both appear in the season finale, which finally gets back to the mythology stuff that was set up in the season premiere. We also see Tad O'Malley for the first time since the premiere, as well as special appearances from a couple of familiar characters from the original series. I don't want to spoil anything about the conspiracy revelations from season 10, but I will say I found parts of it interesting and parts of it... not so much. (One thing I did like was the line in the finale about the current plan having been put in motion in 2012, because that was a date that had been mentioned in the original series. And since that year came and went in the real world, after the show ended, without apparent incident, it was nice to know it hadn't been forgotten. Then again, how could it be? Everyone in the real world was aware of doomsday predictions for December 21, 2012, whether they knew anything about The X-Files or not.) Anyway... the episode ends on a cliffhanger, which was incredibly annoying, since we didn't know yet whether there would be another season or not. And I guess I should say that while the season was perhaps a bit disappointing, I generally enjoyed it, and I'm happy to have seen it. Even the parts I kind of didn't like, I didn't hate the way some people did. (And man, that Were-Monster episode... IMO, that made the whole thing worthwhile.)
Season Eleven (10 episodes)
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First, I need to say that season 10 ended with a virus being released, causing a pandemic, which would prepare the way for alien colonization of the Earth. But at the start of season 11, it turns out that was merely a possible vision of the future that Scully had. It was a vision she apparently shared with her son, William, who had been born to her and Mulder in 2001, at the end of season 8. I also want to mention that I really didn't remember anything that happened with William after his birth, but apparently as a baby, in season 9, he demonstrated some paranormal abilities. And in order to protect him from the Syndicate, he was given up for adoption. Years later, in the 2008 movie I Want to Believe, Mulder and Scully discussed their sorrow over missing out on William's life. They discussed that some more in season 10. But it's this season (when William is 17 years old) that he becomes truly important as a character. There are now two different conspiracies going on, the members of both of which want to find and take control of William, for their own purposes. So of course Mulder and Scully will want to find and protect him, themselves. And they eventually learn that he's been living under the name Jackson Van De Kamp. And he definitely has some dangerous powers.
But William/Jackson is only central to a few episodes of the season. There are, of course, other mythology eps and standalone eps. There's a fairly interesting episode involving Langly (one of the Lone Gunmen), called "This." And a very weird and amusing episode called "The Lost Art of Forehead Sweat," which I thought of as this season's equivalent to season 10's "Were-Monster" episode. (But while this episode may have been less polarizing and more widely-liked than that one, personally I liked it slightly less than "Were-Monster." But only slightly.) And an episode called "Ghouli," in which we get our first really good look at William's powers. And there's a really good episode called "Kitten," in which Skinner is the central focus. And an interesting, somewhat amusing episode called "Rm9sbG93ZXJz," which has minimal dialogue, and focuses on the pervasiveness of technology in our modern lives. (It made me think of "Black Mirror," even though I've never seen that show.) And an episode called "Familiar," which involves a very creepy kids' show character called Mr. Chuckleteeth. And a very gory episode called "Nothing Lasts Forever." And we once again see William and the conspiracy in the season finale. Which... I think most people really did not like. I didn't particularly care for it, either, for various reasons. I'd still kind of like there to be another season, just to answer some unresolved questions. But on the other hand, I wouldn't mind if there's not another season, because... despite some good standalone episodes, I really feel like the mythology of the series tends to be confusing and frustrating... just like it often was in the original series. And I have very little confidence that that could be improved with more stories.