The X-Files is 20 years old. Two decades. Over half my lifespan. Aside from making me feel painfully long in the tooth, it’s amazing how much the show’s legacy has held up. There are plenty of beloved genre properties that haven’t left nearly the enduring legacy as the adventures of FBI Special Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. Yesterday, we ran a letter penned by Scully herself, actress Gillian Anderson, with her thoughts on the show’s 20th. It was sweet and kind of great, but it did make me wish some more of the show’s cast and crew decided to weigh in with their thoughts.
KABAM! Done! X-FilesNews, the same site that originally posted Gillian’s letter, has followed suit with almost a dozen others, ranging from series creator Chris Carter, to the actors who played the lovable Lone Gunmen, to the latter-day and underrated additions of Robert Patrick and Annabeth Gish. Let’s run down the list, starting with the man who dreamed it all up, Chris Carter. After a long break from TV, he’s jumping back into the pond with an apocalyptic series called The After, being developed for Amazon Studios.
Next up is Frank Spotnitz, executive producer and writer on the show, not to mention Carter’s three other shows: Millennium, Harsh Realm, and The Lone Gunmen spinoff. Spotnitz has recently worked on two of Cinemax’s original series, Strike Back and Hunted. Since he’s apparently a fancy pants, he decided to submit a video. Come on, dude, you’re a writer. Let the prose sing!
Next is Robert Patrick, probably best known for his portrayal of the liquid metal T-1000 in James Cameron’s Terminator 2: Judgment Day. He also portrayed Agent John Doggett in The X-Files’ eighth and ninth season. He and Annabeth Gish were brought in as new leads after the departure of David Duchovny, joining the remaining Gillian Anderson. He’s since gone on to work on a tone of shows including The Unit, the awesome but short-lived Last Resort, and HBO’s True Blood.
Annabeth Gish portrayed Agent Monica Reyes, and has continued to work extensively on television after The X-Files, with stints on The West Wing, Brotherhood, and Pretty Little Liars. She can currently be seen on FX’s crime drama The Bridge.
Composer Mark Snow was responsible for the show’s haunting music, including that unforgettable theme song. He’s since gone on to score shows including Smallville and Blue Bloods.
Walking Dead fans know Laurie Holden very well, as she portrayed Andrea Taggart from the show’s first season up through the third. But years before that, she was recurring on X-Files as the mysterious and beautiful Marita Covarrubias.
Two thirds of the show’s beloved Lone Gunmen are accounted for: actors Dean Haglund and Bruce Harwood. Haglund played the long-haired Langly on both X-Files and, unsurprisingly, the Lone Gunmen spinoff. Harwood played the dapper Byers. Sadly, Melvin Frohike — actor Tom Braidwood — hasn’t weighed in with his own letter. He’s probably in witness protection somewhere, or possibly aboard an alien spacecraft.
Actress Sheila Larken played Scully’s mother, Margaret. She hasn’t done much else since X-Files, so I’m going to theorize that she’s been traveling the world with Chris Carter, investigating mysterious paranormal phenomena. Or else just enjoying retirement.
Producer Harry Bring has gone on to work on a ton of shows, including Lifetime’s Army Wives and CBS’ Criminal Minds.
Finally, Michelle MacLaren began as a co-executive producer on X-Files and Harsh Realm, and has since become a director working on such high-profile shows as The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, and arguably the best show on television, AMC’s Breaking Bad — created by another X-Files veteran, Vince Gilligan.
Hmm, those are all great, but it seems like somebody’s missing. Who could it be? Oh, how about DAVID FRIGGIN’ DUCHOVNY? Somebody drag him out of his Californication trailer and chain him in front of a keyboard long enough to weigh in. Come on, man, dance with the one what brung ya!