Apt 42 Revisited, The X-Files, The X-files, TV Review, X-files

Apt. 42: The Best and Worst of Season 2 of The X-Files

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I love lists.  Really, I do.  And not just when it comes to groceries or what I need to get done; I love lists about my favourite things, such as, of course, The X-Files.

Fandoms both come together around their favorite shows, they also often disagree–and vehemently so!–about many a detail.  You don’t believe me?  I dare you to ask a group of X-Philes what their favorite episodes are.  I dare you.  And if you make it out unscarred, do drop me a line!

While you gather enough courage to face the chaos that such a question will create, here is Apartment 42‘s take on the best and worse episodes of the first season of The X-Files–even if I don’t agree with it all 😉

The Best and Worst of Season 2 of The X-Files

It’s no secret that we were pretty excited when we started looking back at season two. To us, as well as our readers, season two is where The X-Files really started to pick up. The strongest episodes of the mythology, an even more established tone, and the start of some experimentation in writing style, can all be found in this season, which essentially cemented the show’s cult status.

But with 25 episodes in the season, there was still some room to stumble.

So just like we did with the first season, we’re compiling our five favorite and five least favorite episodes of season two. Some disclaimers first: Though we’ve recapped them separately, we are counting two-part episodes as a single installment for our purposes here today. So yes, maybe this means we are referring to more than five episodes while discussing our favorites, but we truly believe that the two-part episodes are telling one story, so we’re going to run with it.

We also freely admit that the mythology overwhelms our top episodes. This doesn’t mean that we paid no attention to the Monster of the Week episodes; it really just means that the mythology really was that good (before the writers eventually lost the plot years down the road).


Duane Barry / Ascension – This two-part story brought us Scully’s abduction, a pivotal, transformative moment in The X-Files history. The storytelling is topnotch, the mythology grows deeper, and the level of suspense is brilliant. It’s an important story arc for serious Philes and casual viewers alike.

One Breath – Less about aliens, and more about emotional and spiritual themes, this is the episode where Scully is returned after her abduction. With Scully spending most of her time on the brink of death in this episode, it’s more about watching a shattered Mulder and her family members cope with her return. This episode is all about the characters and provides us with even further evidence of the Mulder and Scully bond.

Irresistible – The strongest Monster of the Week episode in season two barely contains hints of the paranormal, instead focusing on the terrifying figures we may encounter in our everyday lives. As a result, death fetishist Donnie Pfaster remains one of the creepiest, most memorable villains in X-Files history.

Colony / End Game – Alien-human hybrids, clones, the return of Samantha Mulder… who isn’t actually Samantha Mulder, and the introduction of the Alien Bounty Hunter. These episodes represent another pivotal moment in the show’s mythology and they really just feel more like mini movies. What’s not to love?

Read the rest of this post here.

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