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The X-Files – Founder’s Mutation (Review)

This June, we’re going to be taking a look at the current run of The X-Files, beginning with the IDW comic book revival and perhaps taking some detours along the way. Check back daily for the latest review.

In technical and aesthetic terms, Founder’s Mutation is the most modern of the six episodes to air as part of the revival miniseries.

To be fair, the other episodes in the miniseries do embrace the twenty-first century in their own unique ways. My Struggle I and My Struggle II update the mythology for the new millennium. Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster deals with themes that resonate particularly strongly now that Mulder and Scully are in their middle age. Babylon is a sincere (if misguided) attempt to engage with the current political climate. However, those episodes are decidedly old-fashioned in how they choose to tell their stories.

Title drop.

Title drop.

There are little nods towards contemporary technology in the other five episodes. Mulder’s inability to work his phone is something of a running joke, whether in his failure to snap a picture of Guy Mann in Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster or his inability to turn off his “find my phone” app in My Struggle II. Carter is justifiably proud of how My Struggle II incorporates cutting edge pseudo-science. However, none of those stories integrate new technology and new ideas as smoothly as Founder’s Mutation.

However, it isn’t just the use of technology that marks Founder’s Mutation out as the most modern of the six episodes. The episode’s storytelling and style are noticeably more contemporary than the episodes around it. Founder’s Mutation tells its story in a way that feels very much in step with the television landscape around it. More than the other five episodes in the miniseries, Founder’s Mutation feels like an episode of twenty-first century television.

Can you hear me at all?

Can you hear me at all?

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