X-Files (and Everyone Else), Embrace Your SF Cred

In a bid to avoid being pigeonholed as a nerd icon, David Duchovny claimed he never thought The X-Files was science fiction — then blamed The Dark Knight for The X-Files 2's lackluster gross.

Maybe that pigeonhole is bigger than we thought. Duchovny commented in a recent interview with Sci Fi Wire:

I never thought of The X-Files as science fiction. I always thought of it as playing this character in this world. The world was recognizable to me. It wasn't The Jetsons. It was present time. You couldn't fly. You couldn't transport our bodies over a teleport and all that stuff, so it was the real world, and it didn't feel like sci-fi to me.

Point taken — but, uh, remember your UFO poster? That room full of bug-eyed green fetuses? The computer that developed free will? (Not to mention the abducted sister, the abducted partner, the alien worm virus, the malevolent slime, the supernaturally strong clones ....) That's science fiction, buddy. And there ain't no shame in it.

We've gotten into trouble before playing genre-labeling games, but in the spirit of Michael Chabon, it must be said: Science fiction is, indeed, just good storytelling, with far-out ideas that are backed by what we know of the universe so far — and it spurs us forward to discover more. As Duchovny put it later in the interview, The Dark Knight suffocated theaters this summer (and is now suffocating joyful DVD and Blu-Ray players everywhere); there's a reason for that. Science fiction is for everybody, and it's here to stay.

Duchovny definitely understands that last bit. Though most non-Philes seem to be pooh-poohing the idea of any more Mulder and Scully, he's still into it:

I always talk to [X-Files creator] Chris [Carter] about how fascinating today it would be to take this guy from his early 30s and let's take him into his mid-50s, late 50s. Maybe nobody wants to see 60-year-old Fox Mulder, but we can grow him. We can take him through life's hardships and changes. It doesn't have to be this cartoon where nothing changes. You can actually form the flow of this movie and the expanse of this show to embrace actual passage of time and what that does to a person and relationships. To me, that's interesting as an actor and as a person. As an intellectually based character, you don't give a damn what he looks like.

Well, to a point. As long as Old Fox Mulder doesn't look like the freakishly speed-aged Doctor from "The Last of the Time Lords," I'm on board.

Duchovny Still Believes in X-Files [via Sci Fi Wire]

Image from Scificool.com.