Saturday, November 15, 2008

Agent Doggett got a raw deal

In the past few months I have undertaken a daunting task: to finish watching all nine seasons of The X-Files. (I know - too much television!) I just finished the sixteenth episode of Season 8 and felt compelled to write down some random musings. I'm what you would call a casual fan (not a conspiracy-lovin' mad-devoted X-phile), only truly loving the show after the episode "Home" - you know, the balls-to-the-wall one about the incestuous mutants that Fox banned from all reruns. I remember watching that on television and thinking, "Damn ..."

Anyway, Season 8 is when Duchovny was on his way out (betraying the show that made him a star) and Robert Patrick was introduced as his erstwhile successor, John Doggett. When I saw this season live, if you will, I recall being offended that Mulder was leaving and that this, this Terminator was replacing him. But now, rewatching the episodes, I am impressed with what Chris Carter et. al were able to do.

Robert Patrick was given the impossible task of replacing the beloved Duchovny and he did a great job. The character of Doggett is an honest, moral, hard-working man. From the moment he was assigned to the X-Files, he did his job as best he could, following the evidence and supporting his new partner, even when he thought she was nuts. When Mulder came back from the dead, he was - in the character's own words - "cold and ungrateful" for what Doggett and Scully had done for him. Chris Carter was easing the fans into letting Mulder go by making him less likeable, and by making Doggett such a good guy. (The same thing did not work with the insipid Agent Monica Reyes - lightning doesn't strike twice.)

Anyway, the show was clearly on its way out, but kudos to the cast and crew for doing their best with what that defector Duchovny left them behind. Thoughts? Comments?

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