The X-Files First Watch: episodes 1.04 ‘The Conduit,’ 1.05 ‘The Jersey Devil,’ and 1.06 ‘Shadows’

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Xfiles-ConduitI’m still working out the exact format I want to use for these First Watch reviews, so I apologize if they seem a little scattered and for the lack of consistency between posts. I’ve also been writing down comments as I watch the episode, which lends to a “live tweet’ kind of feel, but I’m not sure I want to stick to that method.

One thing I’ve noticed as I am watching this show is that there are so many elements – even small things – that bring to mind other shows that I’ve loved over the years; I am constantly making connections to other shows – so far Supernatural and Fringe come to mind most often – and having to remind myself that it was actually The X-Files that came first. Though I’m experiencing it in reverse, even just in the first few episodes I can really see just how much of an influence The X-Files have had on the genre, and how there are so many shows I love now that may not even exist as we know them if it had not been for The X-Files. In a way, I’m kind of glad I get to experience the show in this way, as I may never have realized just how important this show has become if I had seen The X-Files first. Would I have noticed just how many parallels there are to other shows I watch as I was watching them? Perhaps not. Now I have a whole new appreciation for the series even as I experience it for the first time.

‘The Conduit’ episode 1.04:

This episode is a perfect example of what I was discussing above. There are a lot of parallels to the Supernatural season 1 episode, “Dead in the Water.” In fact, even the shooting location for the lake looks like the same one used in that Supernatural episode. (Does anyone know if it actually is? I’m really curious.) Coincidentally “Dead in the Water” was directed by Kim Manners, who was also a producer and director for The X-Files, though he didn’t join the series until season 2.

My more random thoughts:

  • Why are there random bikers riding through a field in the middle of the night? Did I miss an explanation for them?
  • I’m going to have to get used to not having any sort of resolution at the end of the episode, aren’t I? It’s already driving me nuts.
  • Do we ever learn what happened to Mulder’s sister? I don’t really want to know, because spoilers, but I hope we do. I hate when we don’t get closure on the bigger arcs like that. Even more than the lack of resolution in each individual episode.

‘The Jersey Devil’ episode 1.05:

Just out of curiosity, am I going to find Supernatural doppelgängers for every episode of The X-Files? This time: “Wendigo” Though this episode spends more time in urban areas than that one did. A lot of shows have done the ‘wild child’ stype storyline, and I know there’s evidence of real cases, but I assume this was a start to that on television.

My more random thoughts:

  • Galaxy Gateway? You just couldn’t resist, could you Mulder? The X-Files takes itself a little more seriously than Supernatural; their hotel rooms don’t get quite as flamboyant (at least not yet).
  • “I thought you said he was cute.” Are they setting the stage for a Mulder/Scully romance already? A bit early isn’t it? And why do friends always feel the need to hook up their single friends?
  • Then 30 seconds later they introduce Andrew Airlie, who has apparently appeared in nearly every show filmed in Vancouver since the early 90s. It only took four episodes for them to address Scully’s singleness and try to get her to hook up with somebody. Why can’t a strong female lead also be happily single? And why must one have a significant other in order to have a normal life?
  • Oh, the days before cell phones, when you just carried beepers and had to borrow a restaurant’s phone.
  • Mulder was right about the offspring. Of course he was.

‘Shadows’ episode 1.06:

Mulder and Scully investigate strange deaths Mulder believes to be a result of psychokinesis, though the actual answer is a little more haunting. (See what I did there?) I love a good creepy ghost story.

There actually was an episode of Supernatural titled ‘Shadow’ but the creatures in the shadows in that episode were a little more insidious than in this episode.

My more random thoughts:

  • Does she have her own Hellhound?
  • Guess it’s not a Hellhound since they can’t  typically control vehicles. Poltergeist, maybe?
  • Ok, it’s not a Hellhound, but what is with that growling sound effect? It’s freaking me out.
  • Her bathroom is haunted. Awesome. Why are bathrooms always so creepy. Honestly though, this may be one of my favorite moments from this episode. I love creepy.
  • “Do you know how difficult it is to fake your own death? Only one man has pulled it off.  … Elvis.” Why am I not surprised Mulder would believe Elvis is alive?
  • She has her own personal bodyguard ghost … Who is very violent.
  • Is that Ava’s house on Supernatural?
  • Is Scully finally going to get to arrest an actual human person? And speaking of Scully, she is hardcore with her skepticism. Seriously, if I were her I would start to doubt my own beliefs right about now. After everything she’s seen already, she still doesn’t believe?
  • What is that? What is that strange square disc that contains information? That’s not a flash drive!

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