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Fan Theories About 'The X-Files'

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Vote up the theories you believe are true.

In the current era of deep state conspiracy theories and legitimate flying saucers, The X-Files has never felt more relevant. The show’s cool demeanor and dedication to wrapping lies within the truth have inspired fan theories since it first premiered in 1993. Not every X-Files fan theory is a coherent explanation for some of the show’s biggest mysteries, but the following examples offer some earth-shattering insights into your favorite episodes (though not the ones that never made it to air).

Some of these theories even delve into the thought process behind the show's more controversial decisions over its two-decade history. So, for the spoiler-phobic, you'll want to read this list with your hands over your eyes.

Photo: user uploaded image

  • 1
    282 VOTES

    Scully Is Immortal

    In the Emmy Award-winning Season 3 episode "Clyde Bruckman's Final Repose," Scully asks Clyde Bruckman, the psychic who knows how everyone is going to die, how she will pass away. "You don't," he responds. The episode's writer, Darin Morgan, claims that the line was written as a joke, but over the years, clues have popped up that hinted towards Scully's immortality. 

    In the Season 6 episode "Tithonus," Scully is instructed by the 149-year-old photographer Fellig to "look away" when the grim reaper comes for her. She does exactly that when they're both shot and she ends up living. A few episodes later, in "Monday," time keeps resetting itself because Scully is inside a bank that detonates. Some members of the fandom believe that time has to reset because Dana Scully is immortal, and even time doesn't want to live in a world without Scully. 

    282 votes
  • 2
    143 VOTES

    The Smoking Man Is Using Alien Tech To Stay Healthy

    By all accounts, the Smoking Man should be six feet under. The guy smokes Morleys non-stop and he is blasted by a rocket in Season 9. How is he still alive?

    Redditor /u/AnaBastow believes that his longevity has something to do with a piece of alien tech. In the episode "Provenance/Providence," the audience learns of an "alien artifact" that heals people completely as long as they're in contact with it. The Redditor's theory posits that when SM was shot with a rocket, he was holding the artifact in his lap. Either that, they speculate, or the artifact has been surgically implanted in CSM's body, possibly in his tracheal tube. 


    143 votes
  • 3
    146 VOTES

    Scully's Child Still Has Alien Abilities

    In Season 9, it's revealed that Scully's son, William, has super abilities due to his alien DNA. In the episode "William," the baby is injected with a magnetite in order to remove his telekinetic genes. However, Redditor /u/susliks doesn't believe this is actually the case. They believe that rather than remove William's powers, the magnetite just masks the genes. This means that William isn't as safe as Scully thinks he is. 

    They wrote: "If the DNA itself is still there, that would mean this treatment can be potentially reversed. I think that is what Jeffrey meant when he said they would never leave him alone – they will experiment on him to try to make the alien DNA active again." Only time will tell. 

    146 votes
  • 4
    145 VOTES

    Mulder And Scully Have Been Hooking Up Since The Beginning Of The Series

    Some fans believe Mulder and Scully casually hook up on and off throughout the original run of the series. That could be why Scully is fine with Mulder being a paranoid basketcase and why Mulder seems so comfortable wearing that red Speedo and flaunting his intimate obsessions in front of his partner. Later in the series, the two horniest agents in the FBI have a child together, but no one can agree on exactly when they first gave in to their baser instincts. 

    Haley Mlotek from The Hairpin is pretty sure it happened in the pilot episode when Scully went to Mulder's motel room in nothing but a trenchcoat and her underwear. She writes: "Are you telling me that they DIDN’T immediately have 'wow I’m not going to die and I’m so relieved' [intercourse] right then and there?" Kate Knibbs from io9 agrees

    Other fans think Mulder and Scully waited until season 7 to actually hook up, specifically between episodes 16 and 17. Episode 17, "All Things," begins with Scully getting dressed in Mulder's bathroom, an atypical move for two people that haven't just been intimate with each other. What do you think? Did these two consenting adults with obvious chemistry really wait seven years to get it on, or were they immediately thrust into the arms of passion by the constant threat of paranormal terror?

    145 votes
  • 5
    129 VOTES

    Scully Becomes Immortal In The First Film

    Many fan theories revolve around the concept of Scully's immortality. Has she always been immortal? Did she gain the power in Season 6? Reddit user /u/ KANNABULL believes they have the answer. In X-Files: Fight The Future, Scully is stung by a bee and injected with the alien virus that turns humans into hosts for super-aggressive alien babies. Luckily, Mulder is given a "weak vaccine" for the virus and injects Scully with it. 

    The Redditor theorizes that the vaccine didn't wipe out the virus "but only forced it into dormancy while still retaining all of the qualities that a hybrid would possess. Essentially becoming a symbioses rather than a parasitic virus..." Essentially, /u/KANNABULL is saying that Scully's DNA now has a symbiotic relationship with the alien virus, in which it rewrites her DNA to keep her alive no matter what. 

    129 votes
  • 6
    99 VOTES

    Mulder And Scully Are Glad They Gave Up Their Son

    As the series revival continues, the mystery of William, Mulder and Scully's son (or Scully and Smoking Man's son, or just Scully and some alien's son) deepens. In the Season 10 episode, "Founder's Mutation," the audience is given a glimpse into all the awful things that William went through as he grew up with his alien DNA. Or did it? Alisha Grauso over at Film School Rejects believes that the flashbacks shown in episode two of Season 10 are actually nightmares about what could have happened if Mulder and Scully kept their son. 

    She writes: 

    For Scully, whose life has been irrevocably altered by her [being taken] while pregnant and genetic tampering, her greatest fear is how that might manifest itself in her own son. Mulder’s nightmare scenario for his son was also uniquely personal to him and, like Scully’s did, took the form of his own deepest fear. His son being suddenly [taken] in the same way [as his sister], and worse, for Mulder to witness it and once again be unable to stop it, would be the scenario that terrified Mulder most in this world.

    99 votes