The X-Files has returned for an 11th season, this time lasting 10 episodes, and rumoured to be the confirmed final return to the role for one of the three leads. How does it fare?

Cast

Gillian Anderson as Dana Katherine Scully
David Duchovny as Fox William Mulder
Mitch Pileggi as Walter Skinner
Barbara Hershey as Erika Price
Lauren Ambrose as Agent Einstein
Annabeth Gish as Monica Reyes
Robbie Amell as Agent Miller
Chris Owens as Jeffrey Spender
Anjali Jay as Dr. Joyet
A.C. Peterson as Mr. Y
William B. Davis as Cigarette Smoking Man

Written and directed by Chris Carter

Original Airdate

My Struggle III first aired on January 3, 2018.

Synopsis

The last cliffhanger is… addressed, and then we get put on a new path for a new pair of conspiracies.

High Point

This feels like it has a clear direction, consistent with the original series, unlike the first episode of season ten. This feels like a course correction.

Low Point

Unfortunately, that course correction means they seem to be rewriting the end of the previous season. I haven’t rewatched it recently enough to know if that’s correct, since I’ve been trying to avoid watching episodes out of the podcast sequence, so my last viewing was when it originally came out.

The Review

This sends the show in an original direction, while still respecting what came before, which is not how I felt the last time it came back to the air. I give it 5 out of 6.

The effects are great when it comes to putting the Cigarette Smoking Man in historical documents, doing aliens, etc. It would have been nice to see a little bit more done to make it more plausible to have 65, 57 and 49 year old field agents doing this kind of work. (Seriously, though, that’s not the job of the effects department.) I give it 5 out of 6.

The story involves a truly insane amount of monologuing. It’s never been uncommon for season finale and season premier episodes to have opening and closing monologues, but I can’t think of any episodes that had this many monologues spread through the middle, as well. There are interesting events, and I’m looking forward to where this is going, but it’s very dialogue heavy. There are also some reveals and alliances I question, but I’m going to give them the benefit of the doubt until the season is over before I truly judge them on them. I give it 4 out of 6.

The acting is solid. This cast knows how to play these characters, and they step back into these roles easily. I give it 6 out of 6.

The emotional response was generally good, but sidetracked a little by the aforementioned reveals. I give it 4 out of 6.

The production is solid, as we’ve come to expect from Ten Thirteen. I give it 6 out of 6.

Overall, it’s a promising opening, and an enjoyable episode in its own right. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, My Struggle III receives 35 out of 42.