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Recap / The X-Files Miniseries E01 "My Struggle"

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Season 10, Episode 1:

My Struggle
"For better or worse, we've... moved on with our lives."
Written and directed by Chris Carter

Mulder: I saw an ARV, running on free energy. I saw it disappear.
Old doctor: That's what they all seem to do.
Mulder: But the technology exists. It's existed since Roswell. And it's been in use, being used on humans in human testing, the taking of men, women and children that's misreported as alien abductions.

Nearly fourteen years after the X-Files were shut down, a Conspiracy Theorist talk show host reunites Mulder and Scully to help him investigate apparent alien abductions.


  • Actor Allusion: Joel McHale is known for hosting another talk show.
  • Amicable Exes: Mulder and Scully.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Played with when Scully asks if Mulder watches O'Malley's show. To find out what she's talking about, he tunes in, hears O'Malley ranting about the government's plan to disarm the citizens, and promptly dismisses him as a "jackass".
  • Back from the Dead: The Cigarette-Smoking Man is still okay, but he is now smoking through a tracheotomy.
  • Call-Back: Sveta tells Scully that she can't imagine what it feels like to be abducted. Well, actually...
  • Conspiracy Theorist: O'Malley.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: The first episode of the miniseries rolls out a woman who's been spliced with alien DNA and a fully-functional reproduction of an alien ship that runs on zero-point energy. It's pretty much a given that something was going to get rid of two massive pieces of evidence like that.
  • Advertisement:
  • False Flag Operation: O'Malley and Mulder believe that both 9/11 and the conspiracy Mulder investigated were this.
  • Flashback: To an alien crash in the 1940s. It's not said whether it was Roswell or the Aztec crash.
  • Perma-Stubble: Mulder's gotten more casual about shaving in semi-retirement.
  • Remember the New Guy?: An unusual example in that Sveta met Mulder and Scully when they interviewed her after her first abduction (presumably some time in the original run of the show), but we never saw this.
  • Ripped from the Headlines: The new over-arching conspiracy is that the original conspiracy was actually a smokescreen for the subversion of civil liberties by humans using alien technology. The War on Terror, FEMA camps, and the NSA surveillance controversy are cited as examples.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Wham Line: The Cigarette Smoking Man finds out exactly what Mulder and Scully were called to Skinner for.
    Cigarette-Smoking Man: We have a small problem. They've re-opened the X-Files.
  • Wham Shot: The final scene of the episode has a man's head being shown from the back. The camera then moves around his face to reveal that he is none other than the Cigarette-Smoking Man, who didn't die from the air strike 14 years earlier. And to confirm that this man is not an impostor of any kind, there is a smash cut to "Guest Starring William B. Davis".

Mulder: Scully, are you ready for this?
Scully: I don't know there's a choice.

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