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The X-Files: “Nothing Lasts Forever” Review

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Kutztown chapter.

The newest season of The X-Files has evoked an array of responses from me, varying from adoration to frustration, from satisfaction to absolute disbelief. I expected as much, considering the source, but none of the previous episodes left me quite as disappointed as “Nothing Lasts Forever” did this past week.

This episode’s case centered around a cannibalistic cult chasing an obsession with defeating aging. In my opinion, the gore was over done and distracting. The potential for a satisfactory, special moment between the two intensely intimate main characters was there. It was staring me in the face, but the execution was lost on me.

I don’t want to appear ungrateful. I can recognize that Mulder and Scully deserve their private moments, but now is not the time to hold out on a fan base that has essentially been waiting 25 years for confirmation. The duo have had direct, promising moments, of course, but I feel like I can count them on one hand.

I do not buy that the rhetorical questions, the inaudible whisper, are just keeping to the tone of The X-Files, and staying true to the nature of Mulder and Scully. I do buy that keeping the moment private removes the audience from the much anticipated development of Mulder and Scully’s relationship, not only as work partners but as lovers and, presumably, soul mates.

(Photo credit: Shane Harvey/FOX)

The consistent mention of Mulder’s glasses also confused me, considering Mulder was wearing glasses the very first time Scully met him. A real conversation about aging could have been a way to recover from the out of place “What if you meet someone younger who wants to have kids?” conversation in “This” (C’mon, Chris Carter. Do you really think that’s what Scully is worrying about at this point in her life?). Instead, we were given a visual representation that not only feels overwritten, but is also inconsistent in the overall history of The X-Files.

A series that has been acclaimed and beloved is coming to the end of its 25-year-reign and this is how fans are supposed to approach the end? After all, Gillian Anderson has stated that she will not be returning to the role of Scully once this season is over. The X-Files without Anderson would just be a flashback to the disappointing days of season 9 when David Duchovny’s presence was reduced to few and far between appearances. If Anderson’s absence forces a Scully-less storyline, you can count me out of a show that does not respect the story is originally intended to tell, which is the story of Mulder and Scully.

I read that “Nothing Lasts Forever” was meant to be episode 8, and I honestly feel like it should have stayed there. The X-Files, in all of its glory and even in its imperfections, deserves more than a rushed ending which is what I now fear for the finale of season 11. 


writer & editor | Pennsylvania native | coffee & fictional characters | fiercely intersectional feminist