X-Files Mythology for Dummies

Click to viewIn the nine years The X-Files was on the air, Chris Carter and co. gave us 202 hour-long episodes and a feature film. If you haven't been a diehard fan since the beginning, how are you supposed to catch up on all that before I Want to Believe comes out next week? Take heart, because there are those who share your concerns - even the BBC has an X-Files mythology overview on its website. Below the cut are five other websites that will fill you in on everything Mulder and Scully have been up to since 1993. Well, everything that they want us to know, at least.

The X-Files Conspiracy Timeline

Beginning four and a half billion years ago and ending with 2002 series finale "The Truth," this timeline chronicles every event of The X-Files by episode title and exact date. Website creator Mike Marek also provides a conspiracy-specific timeline that collects only the events pertaining to the show's unique mythology, a Lone Gunmen timeline, and an essay with Marek's own interpretation of what the X-Files mythology means.

The X-Files Mythology Guide

For every mythology-related episode in each season, sitemaster Derek Beebe provides a rundown, an analysis, and a bulleted list of plot points. This is a painstakingly detailed and thoughtful exploration of the series, and, impressively, it's near-complete: the Mythology Guide covers the first eight seasons and the first movie.

Cracking the Conspiracy: Making Sense of the X-Files Mythology Arc

This giant essay by Anthony Leong takes readers through each separate aspect of the X-Files mythology, complete with pictures and quotes. Though it only covers the first five seasons of the show, it is a well-organized and reasonably concise overview of the conspiracy arc — I'm sure it was no easy task to complete. Plus, there's an appendix with summaries of all the mythology episodes.

The X-Files Wiki

In this enlightened age, there's a wiki for everything; this is the one for The X-Files, related series Millennium and The Lone Gunmen, both X-Files movies, and even two X-Files video games. It's extensive and detailed, so start clicking — and if you've got as much free time and pathetic obsession as I do, feel free to edit some articles as well.

Red Wolf's X-Files Episode Guide

It's simple, it's not image-heavy, and it's way less work than going through the complete transcripts. This episode guide collects summaries, cast lists, and memorable quotes from each installment of The X-Files. The best part? The entire thing is available in PDF files, either in A4 or US Letter paper sizes. You can thank devoted fans Jens Vogel, Autumn Tysko, and Kevin Patterson for that convenience.

BONUS: The X-Files Relationship Episode Guide

If you're looking for some mind candy after that dense parade of complex mythology, here's your treat. Fanfic writer Kipler provides us with a hilarious quip on every bit of Mulder/Scully tension in the nine seasons of the show and the film; it's shipperdom at its best. Don't miss "Ode to Bambi," by Fox Mulder (1960-?).

All this internet knowledge should save you the 300 dollars it would take to buy the complete X-Files collection on DVD. This is the great gift that keeps on giving, from a show that arguably started web fandom. Enjoy — the truth, it seems, is only a click away.