Mulder and Scully on the box art for a season seven X-Files DVD release.

Mulder and Scully on the field artwork for a season seven X-Files DVD launch.
Image: twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

The X-Files typically didn’t give a lot shine to holidays—other than a couple of notable exceptions, just like the season-six traditional “How the Ghosts Stole Christmas.” But the looming arrival of the 12 months 2000 was too juicy for a present that reveled in conspiracy theories to disregard, and thus the aptly titled “Millennium” popped up in late 1999, early within the present’s seventh season.

As devotees of late-’90s tv will recall, Millennium was additionally the title of one other Chris Carter-created Fox sequence; regardless of mining a few of the identical turf as The X-Files, it failed to realize comparable pop-culture heights and was canceled in mid-1999. “Millennium” the episode contains a guest-starring look by Millennium the sequence’ lead character—Lance Henriksen’s former FBI profiler Frank Black—who will get some closure for his storyline because of this, although it feels a bit shoehorned into what’s in any other case a reasonably normal “monster of the week” episode.

As the calendar marches towards December 31, 1999, a former FBI agent dies on account of suicide, which seems to be the fourth such incident in a brief period of time. The bureau flags the instances after every man’s grave is vandalized in what seems to be some form of ritual. “Grave robbing with a twist,” as Agent Mulder (David Duchovny) calls it. And although there are the standard eye-rolls and paper-shuffling when he additional elaborates on this cemetery humorous enterprise, everybody—together with the usually-very-skeptical Agent Scully (Gillian Anderson) and FBI boss Skinner (Mitch Pileggi)—lets him roll with it: “It was necromancy, the summoning of the dead. It’s a form of magic dating back to primitive shamanism with a long tradition in the Christian church. Through it, the dead are brought back to life for the purposes of divulging arcane knowledge and performing ritual tasks.”

Skinner suggests the Millennium Group—former FBI brokers turned top-secret law-enforcement consultants who, as Scully mentioned, “fell into disrepute” after it grew to become clear they have been a doomsday cult—is concerned. But what precisely are they as much as? In search of solutions, Scully and Mulder head to the psychiatric hospital the place Frank Black has checked in to recalibrate after his bumpy experience by means of Millennium. His Millennium Group entanglements led to the demise of his spouse in the course of the sequence, and when Mulder and Scully discover him, he’s embroiled in a custody battle along with his former in-laws over his younger daughter. He’s so burned out, he received’t even have a look at the case file they dangle earlier than him.

With New Year’s Eve inching nearer, Scully and Mulder—doing that “working separately while coming to the same conclusions” factor they did so nicely—notice there’s certainly a doomsday plot afoot… and it includes zombies, beginning with the reanimated corpses of the 4 lately deceased FBI agents-turned-Millennium Group operatives, who volunteered for this responsibility as a part of a plan they believed would hasten the top of the world. Holmes Osborne (Donnie Darko) performs the loner who serves as their necromancer, performing the ceremonies, digging up the our bodies, and muttering Book of Revelation verses underneath his breath. All appears on schedule till he’s compelled to show considered one of his zombies on a cop who has the misfortune to detect the human biohazard he’s hauling behind his truck.

Naturally, each Mulder and Scully have their very own shut encounters. “He was dead, and then somehow he wasn’t!” Scully groggily recounts to Skinner; the “rules” of those creatures are just a little murky, however fortuitously it appears this explicit pressure of shambling corpse received’t remodel assault victims until they die because of this. (They do, nevertheless, succumb to headshots, as George A. Romero decreed.) As for Frank Black, he steps up when it counts, offering the brokers with a profile of the necromancer so extremely correct it’s not likely a shock once we notice he is aware of precisely who Scully and Mulder are in search of. In truth, he is aware of precisely what’s at stake—that Millennium Group, man!—and in the end decides he’ll stand for the forces of excellent and assist stop, you already know, a Y2K zombie apocalypse.

Fans of Millennium might need longed for an additional season of the present to essentially wrap issues up, however not less than they obtained to see Frank reunite along with his daughter in a second that’s candy even with out the context of three seasons of a very totally different TV sequence. (“Millennium” was directed by Thomas J. Wright, who additionally helmed practically a 3rd of Millennium’s episodes; it was co-written by Vince Gilligan, who famously went on to create Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul.) Even sweeter, although, are the ultimate seconds of the episode, when Scully and Mulder watch Dick Clark on TV and share a spontaneous kiss to ring within the new 12 months. “The world didn’t end,” they notice, and whether or not they meant 2000 continued with out an undead rebellion, or planet Earth stored revolving even after Scully and Mulder had a romantic lip-lock… nicely, the reply’s just a little of each, maybe.

The X-Files is accessible for streaming on Hulu.

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