The X-Files First Watch: ‘Ghost in the Machine,’ ‘Ice,’ ‘Space,’ and ‘Fallen Angel’

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After an extended break, I am finally back to my X-Files First Watch. Blame Daredevil – I got caught up in the series, then fell behind on all the new shows I was watching and just finally got my DVR cleaned out. Now I can get back to The X-Files. I’m not sure exactly when the new series will begin, but I will probably have to average 6-8 episodes a week to get finished in time, at the rate I’m going. Since I’ve just barely reached the halfway point of season 1, I still have a long way to go.

“Ghost in the Machine” Episode 1.07:

xfiles-ghostmachineHumans always seem to have an innate fear/distrust of technology and machines, which displays itself in times like this. Especially since Terminator it seems we’ve all feared the day machines will be able to think for themselves and rise up. After all the versions of this plot line I’ve seen, even I’m somewhat terrified of computers taking over. In this episode, the computer network that’s been designed to control the systems of a building has evolved into a sentient being and has begun to defend itself when the program is threatened with termination. I was honestly kind of ambivalent about this episode, I just couldn’t really get into it for some reason. but here are a few thoughts:

Is there a show or movie filmed in Vancouver that Rob LaBelle hasn’t guest-starred in?

I know I probably said this already, but I really wish I had watched this show during its original run, when some of these plot lines were new and original, instead of things that we’ve now seen hundreds of times on various genre shows that came later. Perhaps that is why I was feeling ambivalent while watching this, though I know it’s not the show’s fault.

I like how, even after six episodes, it still feels like the story is mostly coming through Scully’s POV. We entered the series (and Mulder’s world) with her, and we’re following her on this journey.

Of course the government wants control of the murder-computer, and of course we’re left with a mini-cliffhanger ending, because the machine never really dies.

“Ice” Episode 1.08:

Researchers seemingly go crazy at an arctic drilling station. For fans of the series I’m curious: At what point did you really get into the series? I’m 8 episodes in still am not completely hooked. It’s interesting, and I’m enjoying it – so far it reminds me a lot of season 1 of Fringe – but I’m not yet seeing what inspired such a devoted following. That being said, I really liked this episode. I like the kind of “locked room” storylines, where you don’t know who is the killer/who is infected. It creates a psychological atmosphere that I find fascinating. I was paying more attention to this episode and didn’t write down as many random thoughts, except that I really I hate when they show creepy wormy things crawling underneath the skin. Freaks. Me. Out. Also, I’m really glad the dog lived.

“Space” Episode 1.09:

Mulder and Scully are called in when an employee at NASA begins to suspect sabotage on an upcoming launch.

I like that I’m almost halfway through the first season, and Mulder and Scully’s relationship is still primarily professional. I know enough about the show to know that will eventually change, but I like that they weren’t immediately paired off and set up for a romance.

So we never get an explanation of what the ghost-like being is? What it wanted? Did the creature live on after Belt’s death? Will it possess someone else now? This can be a very frustrating show.

Scully saw his face change, right? Why is she still skeptical? And why is it so hard to believe Mulder – that the colonel was fighting the possession and trying to help the astronauts? That seems obvious to me.

“Fallen Angel” Episode 1.10:

xfiles-fallenangelOo! More aliens! That’s only a little sarcastic. I actually think the alien stories have been what this show does best so far, and I love that these episodes let us connect a little more with the characters – Mulder, at least.

Mysterious lights in the sky, fire on the ground, military coverup, all the hallmarks of a classic alien ship crash landing. That ‘Deep Throat’ guy informs Mulder of all this mysteriousness, so naturally he needs to go check it out before the government can completely cover it up. Alone.

Oo! It’s an invisible alien!

I love crazy conspiracy theory nuts. I wish they had held off on casting Rob Labelle. He would have been perfect for this part.

It’s impressive how well Scully is able to maintain her skepticism. Just with what she’s seen so far, I would’ve been doubting all my convictions by now, if I were her. I just hope her wall of skepticism can remain natural to the character, and not become a frustrating fault. Maybe it’s a defense mechanism – she simply cannot allow herself to believe, because that would mean admitting the system of rules and order she has spent her life believing aren’t as applicable as she once thought.

But you were the one who sent him there! Who are you? What side are you really on, Deep Throat?

And there’s my thoughts on episodes 7-10. Hopefully I get a chance to watch more this week. I like the series, but I haven’t become addicted to it the way I know some fans are. It’s really hard choosing between the stuff on my DVR, Sense8 or watching more X-Files.

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