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01/25/2016  •  Posted By admin  •  0 Comment(s) Press Reviews

How much do you adjust for nostalgia? How important is it to separate critical judgement (already a complicated stew of emotional response masquerading as rationality) from the simple pleasure of coming back home? I’m not sure. It’s a question that occurred to me several times watching “My Struggle.” This is not a great hour of television. It’s forced in places, unevenly paced, and exploits real-life tragedy to a degree that borders on tasteless. A Glenn Beck stand-in is a hero of righteous truth, and Mulder (looking a lot more grizzled and jowly than you might remember him) keeps ranting about how a beautiful young woman is the “key to everything.” Oh, and there are multiple paranoid monologues detailing conspiracy theories that wouldn’t be out of place on a Truthers message board. But I liked it.

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01/25/2016  •  Posted By admin  •  0 Comment(s) Press Reviews

In an era of de facto reboots, the best of the lot are those which take to task one’s love for the original property. They ask: Why not leave well enough alone? “Reboot,” after all, can be a loosely translated term. With similar intents, it represents both this century’s Battlestar Galactica and next month’s Fuller House: Mine what was so endearing about the original installment, and attempt to carry that spirit forth in perpetuity, no matter what kind of all new cultural context it has to navigate. If Fuller House is anything like Girl Meets World, it’ll struggle to prove its pure-cheese core was so much more than a gold standard of early-’90s sitcom traditionalism—but the “reboot” of The X-Files has a clear benefit: Agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) have never been far from our minds.

From the show’s end in 2000, through a second film and the rise of stream-binging TV, to today’s six-episode miniseries, fans have been able to follow a slick trail of black ooze through nearly two decades of prestige TV. While ratings were never deplorable in the end, and while the second film gave ’shippers the fan service they demanded—at least to the extent that I Want to Believe was able to net more box office receipts than its substantial budget, thereby justifying its existence—rarely are Seasons 8 and 9 of The X-Files ever celebrated. Mostly, they’re tolerated. So in the shadow of one flimsy goodbye after another, the premiere episode of this functionally tenth season must prove it’s more than yet another attempt to make up for past crimes. This it does, and then some, both literally rebooting the mythology of The X-Files while convincing us that there are still so many stories to tell for our beloved agents. It really is something special to behold on network TV.

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