16 Episodes That Prove 'The X-Files' Is Secretly A Comedy
For casual fans of The X-Files, the show is all about aliens, conspiracy theories, and the nefarious Cigarette Smoking Man. But many of the show's "Monster of the Week" episodes, meaning the ones not centered on the alien mythology, are actually really funny. Since it's The X-Files, the humor is macabre, deadpan, and downright bizarre - comedy that could come from the mind of Fox Mulder himself.
Most of the show's most beloved comedy episodes were written by Darin Morgan and Vince Gilligan. Morgan penned the first comedic episode, "Humbug," in the show's second season. He wrote a total of six episodes for the series, and they're all basically instant classics. Before Vince Gilligan created Breaking Bad, he penned some of the best comedic episodes of The X-Files, including the fan-favorite "Bad Blood" from Season 5. David Duchovny also contributed to the show's comedic side with "Hollywood A.D." in Season 7.
Huge X-Files fans have known for years: this show is secretly a comedy.
- 1290 VOTES
Gillian Anderson often cites "Bad Blood" as her favorite episode of The X-Files, and it's easy to see why. After Mulder accidentally slays a teenager who was posing as a vampire, Mulder and Scully each tell their version of the events leading up to the incident. It's a hilarious look at how the partners view each other's quirks, and neither paints a flattering picture.
One of the episode's best running gags is how Mulder and Scully remember Sheriff Hartwell (Luke Wilson). In Scully's version of the story, he's a charming dreamboat with a Southern drawl. In Mulder's version, he's got huge teeth, an exaggerated accent, and not a lot of brains. Who's right about the sheriff's looks? Scully, of course.
- 2174 VOTES
In this two-part episode, Mulder and Scully visit Area 51 and are stopped by Men in Black just as a mysterious aircraft flies above them. This causes Mulder and one of the Men in Black, Morris Fletcher (Michael McKean), to switch bodies - but nobody else in the group realizes a body swap has occurred.
Scully does eventually realize that something is wrong with "Mulder" after he flirts with Skinner's secretary and buys a waterbed. When he calls Scully "baby," that's the final straw. She pulls a gun on Fletcher-as-Mulder and warns, "'Baby' me and you'll be peeing through a catheter." Angry Scully is the best.
- 3227 VOTES
Thriller novelist Jose Chung (Charles Nelson Reilly) is writing a book about alien abductions and UFOs, and he interviews Scully about a stranger-than-usual alien abduction case she and Mulder investigated in Klass County, WA.
The bizarre details of the case are recounted throughout the episode - it involves multiple alien species, hypnosis, Men in Black (played by Jesse Ventura and Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek), and more. At one point, Chung interviews a teenager named Blaine, who searches for UFOs and claims he found an alien body that was recovered by Mulder, Scully, and a detective working the case. The best part of the interview? Blaine describes Mulder as completely emotionless, except for one shriek when he sees the alien body. If nothing else in this episode makes you laugh, Mulder's little shriek will get you.
- 4200 VOTES
Written by Vince Gilligan, "Small Potatoes" features amazing performances from both David Duchovny and guest star Darin Morgan. After five babies in Martinsburg, WV, are born with tails, Mulder and Scully arrive to investigate. They discover all five children have the same father, the shapeshifter Eddie Van Blundht (Morgan).
Mulder and Scully are at peak teamwork in this episode, and their banter is great. As our favorite FBI agents piece together the details of the case, Mulder asks if Scully wants to hear his theory. "Van Blundht somehow physically transformed into his captor then walked out the door, leaving no one the wiser?" she responds. "Boy, Scully, should we be picking out china patterns or what?" he says, sending millions of shipper hearts soaring.
Oh, and later in the episode, Van Blundht poses as Mulder and tries to put the moves on Scully. He's just about to kiss her when the real Mulder bursts through the door. Awkward.
- 5130 VOTES
In this episode, Mulder and Scully encounter a genie (Paula Sorge) who's jaded after centuries of granting wishes to selfish humans. She takes wishes very literally. For example, when Mulder is granted three wishes, he asks for "peace on earth" and the genie makes everyone on Earth - except for Mulder - disappear.
One of the highlights of this episode is Scully's total delight over performing an autopsy on an invisible man named Anson Stokes (Kevin Weisman), who wished to become invisible and then got hit by a truck that didn't see him crossing the street. Scully makes him visible again by covering his entire body in yellow powder; it's probably the most fun she has in all 11 seasons of the show.
- 6178 VOTES
In an episode that seems straight out of fanfiction, Mulder and Scully go undercover as a married couple, Rob and Laura Petrie, to investigate disappearances in an upscale planned community. The case itself is pretty forgettable, but the episode is worth it for all the undercover hijinx.
Mulder really leans into the "married couple" bit to annoy Scully. There's sexual innuendo and pet names, and at one point, he tells a neighbor they "spooned up and fell asleep like little baby cats." Honestly, it's a wonder Mulder made it through this episode alive.