Oh, Mr Carter, how I loved your creations. Mulder and Scully have been such important characters to me. The X-Files was never about aliens and conspiracies to me, it was about two weird people who complemented each other and loved each other unconditionally, while faced with incredible challenges. They kept battling when it seemed that the entire world was against them. As someone who’s on the weird side myself, I saw them achieve the impossible, and when my life got too hard they were there to cheer me on and show me strength. When I wanted to give up, they showed me resilience. They showed me it was OK to be a total nerd, that by staying true to yourself you can conquer (or save) the world.
Mulder is the poster boy for adults with ADHD like myself. He is me in so many ways. I understand his motivations. I see what other people think of as self-interest as one of the most common traits of ADHD, and understand that he doesn’t intentionally try to hurt people. He’s completely fucked up, yet at the same time he’s the most caring, accepting person. I relate to Scully in my lack of belief in the implausible and need for proof, so I’m a combination of them both. They are such beautiful, complex characters, and you have my undying thanks for creating them.
But that doesn’t mean I forgive you for assassinating them.
I understand that actors want to move on to other projects,. so changes have to be made. Unfortunately it felt like you went with the first thing that popped into your head rather than thinking of more weird misfit characters who could continue the fight. Having new characters who were the opposite of Mulder and Scully meant that I had to watch characters I coudn’t relate to and spent my whole life being pitted against, crush the characters I’d loved. Mulder and Scully became unrecognisable, the humour was gone, and there was nothing left for me. Then with the end of the original series you had the opportunity to finally give them a happy ending, give them the life they deserved after so much sacrifice, but instead you chose to put them on the toughest path you could find, and I felt so sad for them.
I really wish you’d used the second movie to fix that, but it made it worse. You gave me more unrecognisable Mulder and Scully where they were at odds with each other, and it was such a waste of the characters on what was essentially a really bad lifetime movie. I would have loved to have seen another action movie, with them being the only ones who could rescue their son from the clutches of the consortium or something, but instead you made me feel worse because the path you set them on in The Truth turned out to be as bad as I’d thought. I wish I’d never seen that movie. I wish the series had ended with Requiem.
It still bugs me that I can’t figure out why you kept bringing them back to destroy them more. They changed from being something positive to aim for to failures who have an even shittier life than me. How could you destroy them like that? Splitting them up and having them antagonistic for Season 10 was just stupid. Mulder and Scully have built-in conflict just from being who they are, you don’t need to manufacture it and crush their natural dynamic that made the show what it was. The season 11 opener was a mess and a disappointment, but for the most part season 11 brought back their banter and pitted them against each other in a more natural, intellectual way. This just seemed to make it harder when we were nearing the end of the season and I could see a massive train crash on the end of the tracks and tried to put the brakes on, but there was no stopping it. My Struggle IV not only made me never want to watch another episode if it was brought back, it made me not want to rewatch any other season as well. I gave up my rewatch groups, and dropped right back in fandom stuff. Watching old episodes made me cry because I knew how it was going to end. I would have preferred Mulder and Scully’s deaths as heroes to the character assassination you did on them. That was seriously fucked up. I know Mulder and Scully, and they never would have behaved like that. I don’t think I can ever forgive you for the most ridiculous ending ever. Instead of getting to think they finally got to ride off into the sunset with their long lost child, I discovered the child I fretted over for 16 long years was never worth anyone’s time so I should just forget him, and that sports cars and shoot outs are more important than being true to yourself. Then my heart sank even further when I learned that Scully and Mulder will never ever get to relax and enjoy life because they’re having a baby that they’ll need to work until they’re 80 to support. As a woman close to Scully’s age, I could think of nothing worse. Did anyone tell you beforehand what a fucked up ending that was, or did you just choose to ignore them, thinking you knew better? You withheld the final scene from Gillian until shooting not because you trusted her as an actress – it showed the opposite – but because you knew what her reaction would be. There was nothing clever about your twists. They were unnecessarily cruel and pointless, and just dated, recycled versions of your previous cliffhangers. You knew Gillian signed on for this last season only so the show would have a decent ending, yet you dragged her away from her family only to end with the most ridiculous ending you could possibly have given us that made things worse. That final betrayal put the last nail in the coffin of my favourite show, a show that lost its path a long time ago. It felt like you were angry that the characters didn’t go the way you wanted them to, so you’d rather burn the manuscript a’la Milagro.
Why did you have to destroy them like that, when fanfic writers manage to keep them in character and keep the plot moving forward? Why did you take away the hope I had that I’d be accepted for who I was and I didn’t have to live a ‘normal’ life; that there was more out there for me. Why did you turn them into stereotypical soap opera characters before you sent them off to be uncaring of anyone but themselves and the fact that they’re able to finally impossibly procreate? Are you 16? Do you not know the effort required in raising children? Do you not know what geriatric pregnancy and childbirth is like? Did you just want to go with the St Rachel thing so you could kill off Scully in the future, your concession that Gillian may have finally made it clear that this was the last time she’d do it? I really wanted to believe that you’d give them an ending where they could finally be happy within themselves. I should have known better.
Mulder and Scully are more than just characters, they’re me. I feel what they feel. I’ve been lost since the finale because I feel like you destroyed my belief system. They were unrecognisable and I questioned everything I thought I knew about them. I’d love to understand how you can be so smug about the way you kept bringing them back only to destroy them. You don’t owe me anything, but I believe you owed your characters respect. Over a year later I still can’t watch old episodes because I can no longer bear to look at the same Mulder and Scully who once were instrumental in getting me through difficult times. Mourning is an individual thing, so I’m trying not to beat myself up over it being “just a TV show”. I’m almost at the point of walking away, but I’m not quite ready to admit defeat yet.
Thank you for creating Mulder and Scully, CC, but fuck you for destroying them.