Occult Detective Countdown 19/20: Mulder & Scully / #40DaysofHalloween

I did not watch the The X-Files on a regular basis until Season 4 when it moved to Sunday nights. Originally airing in 1993 on Fridays, I was working as security for a night club at the time so only rarely caught an episode, though I knew it was right up my alley.

In time, thanks to video, I was able to catch up on the series and, though the narrative was strained over its 11 seasons, due in large part to the uneven leadership of its showrunners, X-Files captured the essence of what it meant to be a modern occult detective by exploring every conspiracy and urban legend imaginable. The X-Files had it all and then some, and Special Agents Mulder and Scully were the perfect expressions of the two types of investigators that dominate the field — the believer and the skeptic.

Fox Mulder, a celebrated criminal profiler, never met a conspiracy theory he wasn’t willing to purchase hook, line, and sinker. No rabbit hole was too deep. Relegated to the X-Files, Mulder was convinced of a mass government conspiracy to hide the truth about extraterrestrials, psychic phenomena, and all manner of oddities.

Dana Scully was a brilliant medical doctor and scientist brought in to be a skeptical observer to debunk Mulder’s wild theories. Over the course of the series, she becomes more open to the possibilities that these paranormal occurrences have some validity to them.

Over the course of 11 seasons there were some amazing episodes, highlighted by terrific acting, writing, and production values… and a willingness to go all in a genre that is near and dear to my heart.

A Note on the Occult Detective Countdown: As I make my way through a list of some of my favorite occult detectives, bear in mind, I am not recording them in any particular order. I thought it would be more fun to release them organically, narratively rather than in a simple “best to worse” format. I’ll let you decide for yourselves their pecking order.

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