Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Happy 53rd Birthday Chris Carter

October 13th marks the day that a very important even took place for all sci-fi fans as well as the entire sci-fi horror genre itself. On this day in 1956 Chris Carter, creater of The X-Files was born and today he celebrates is 53rd birthday. I fell in love with The X-Files when the first season came on air in 1993. It marked the turning point in my life when I stopped watching Goosebumps and went to watch something scarier with a more complex plot… although, I never understood the episodes, all I can remember was how frightening some of them were. The show was a gateway for me into discovering new kinds of horror and shaping me into the horror fanatic I am.

I want to talk a little about what makes this show so great. The shows are broken into two different kinds of shows: the monster-of-the-week episodes, and the anthology episodes. The monster-of-the-week episodes deal with cryptozoology, mythical monsters, beasts and legends. They followed the general structure of what the legend or myth tells but they added more onto it so that the story had depth; these episodes were smartly written, dark, had horrifying sequences and often had spooky surrealistic atmospheric tones. These were the episodes that normally creeped me out and left me lying awake in bed most of the nights.


The anthology episodes were what the show was known for; they dealt with alien abductions, the government conspiracies to cover them up, men in black and even the end of the world. These episodes dealt with Mulder trying to find his sister after she was abducted from his house and the themes were very strong in each of these episodes; they challenged the believe of a God, they made the audience ponder the unbelievable and they begged the question ‘if science can’t prove it, can it be a miracle.’ Each of those episodes took you into the minds of Mulder and Scully and gave them depth, character and emotion. These episodes were scary considering they were all based on real events that were documented.

The entire series as a whole was a landmark in not only sci-fi and horror, but also historically, there have been several UFO groups that have been started because this show, several professors and teachers use The X-Files as learning material. The show was probably one of the most subversive, intelligent and haunting shows on the air and it freaked me out when I younger. That poster on Mulder’s wall that states “I want to believe” has become an icon in the series and it’s exactly how the viewers felt… we want to believe the truth, but the truth can be just as skewed.

With my hat down I applaud you Mr. Carter for making one of the best shows on the air. My you have a great birthday and I wish you well. 


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