- The truth is out there.
- —X-Files title sequence
The X-Files is a science fiction/supernatural TV series that originally aired for nine seasons from September 10, 1993 to May 19, 2002 on the Fox Network. The show was created by Chris Carter and starred fan heartthrobs David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson as FBI Special Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. It started as a cult success, and became highly popular before the end of its run.
Fox Mulder (Duchovny) is a talented profiler for the FBI. Also, he believes that his little sister, Samantha, was abducted by aliens while under his care when he was twelve, and he is driven by a need to find out the truth about what happened to her. His keen interest in extraterrestrials and the supernatural gets him the nickname "Spooky" and an assignment in the little-known X-Files Department, which deals with unsolved cases, many of which are suspiciously unusual.
Because Mulder struggles to keep his objectivity when dealing with cases that may vindicate his beliefs, Dana Scully (Anderson) is assigned to be his partner. Scully is trained as a medical doctor, and she's a natural skeptic. She usually manages to come up with a plausible scientific explanation for the phenomena that Mulder ascribes to the supernatural, but she can never wholly refute Mulder's theories, and as the show goes on, it becomes more and more apparent that there's more to this "aliens" thing than meets the eye.
Mulder and Scully begin their relationship as coworkers, and often argue. Gradually, however, they learn to respect each other and they become close, even romantic in later seasons.
The primary antagonist for most of the show is known only as the Cigarette-Smoking Man (William B. Davis). He is connected to a shadow organization within the U.S. government, known as the Syndicate, that is intent on hiding the truths that Mulder wants to expose to the public. Like anyone, he believes in his own cause, and he is ruthless in pursuing it.
Mulder and Scully are widely regarded as hot, therefore they have fanbrats, Sues, and Stus after them. They are also shipped with each other, and Mulder is slashed with Walter Skinner (Mitch Pileggi), his boss, and with Alex Krycek (Nicholas Lea), a young, good-looking Russian-American with dubious loyalties who is often pitted against Mulder and Scully.
A disturbing trend in NSFW fanfiction is to have humiliating and kinky things (such as spanking and, even more disturbing, dressing her in underage clothes for fetish-related reasons) happen to Scully. While use of the spanking kink isn't in and of itself a charge, underage fetishism is just squicky, and both of these could also be sexist and stem from the idea that bringing down a powerful woman is sexy. Nonconsensual BDSM is also a charge, since it is essentially trivialised rape.
There are also a great many fanfics that deal with sickness, often so that one of the protagonists can "take care of" the other, but they often seem to forget that Scully is a medical doctor and have her make bad choices such as showing up to work sick.
X-Files and the PPC
Mulder has been known to suffer from Scully Withdrawal Syndrome, a specialized form of Partner Separation Anxiety, when traumatically separated from Scully in badfic. This apparently happens to him often enough that FicPsych came up with a name for it.
Missions in this Continuum
- "Mucking the Wanderverse," Part One, Part Two, Part Three (crossover with Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Highlander), Agents Annie and The Lovely Beta (DIC - Buffyverse)