Get your first (official) look at the now-in-production The X-Files season 11. Last year, Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny reunited with show creator and director Chris Carter for a six-episode return to the conspiracy-filled world of FBI agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. That 10th season marked the first television return to the series since 2002.

With ratings strong for its home network FOX in season 10, there was little doubt from believing fans that an 11th season of X-Files would be out there. This new season, planned for a debut in early 2018, will be 10 episodes long and take what network president David Madden claims is a much simpler approach to the X-Files mythology than season 10 did. Only the first and last episodes of season 11 will be mythology-oriented. The middle eight non-mythology episodes in the season will be stand-alone in structure, otherwise known to fans as monsters-of-the-week (MOTW) installments.

Related: FOX is Bringing X-Files Season 11 to NYCC

In addition to the photos (see below), EW has conspiracy theories of their own, which Carter “gave a little intel on.” The first image shows Scully in a hospital, but Mulder looking in perfect health. This is in conflict to where viewers last saw the two (Scully, who is immune to the alien virus, was stuck on a bridge trying to cure an infected Mulder). “Obviously something unexpected has happened,” comments Carter without reveling too much. He then ensures that this opener was planned long before the cliff-hanger of season 10 by saying “everything is by design.”

Carter also promises that Mulder and Scully will be “drawn even closer together this year.” After season 10 brought the formerly-estranged duo back together professionally, the partners are in for an intense journey involving William, the son Scully shares with Mulder. “William has been an absent center,” Carter says. “He will come to the fore.”

X Files Season 11 Mulder Scully X Files Season 11 First Look Images & Details Promise New Conspiracies

X Files Season 11 Alien X Files Season 11 First Look Images & Details Promise New Conspiracies

EW notes that the first episode of X-Files season 11 will get into the Cigarette Smoking Man’s (William B. Davis) backstory and family ties to Mulder, before the second episode jumps well-ahead in time. This will put distance between Mulder and Scully and the events of the season premiere. Meanwhile, episode three is described as a darkly comedic hour, written by Carter.

As we reported last month, Barbara Hershey has joined season 11 to play a mysterious character named Erika Price. Carter doesn’t go into much more detail about Price, but he does comment that resemblance between her red hair and Scully’s is pure coincidence. “It was a thrill to work with her,” Carter says. The actress is no stranger to horror and science-fiction, having starred in Damien and Once Upon a Time on television and on the big screen in Black Swan, two Insidious films, and the classic shocker The Entity.

Carter also teased the addition of another new character named Mr. Y – and some characters who only appear to be new – in season 11. One of the most surprising twists in season 10 involved the seemingly-loyal ally Agent Reyes (Annabeth Gish) confessing her collaboration with the Cigarette Smoking Man (William B. Davis). “Familiar alliances are rattled,” Carter says. Carter added that season 11 will explore the motive behind this, and a new angle on Mulder and Scully’s boss, Assistant Director Skinner (Mitch Pileggi).

Season 11, filming now in Vancouver, also marks the return of actors Lauren Ambrose (Six Feet Under) as Agent Einstein and Robbie Amell (The Flash) as Agent Miller.

NEXT: ‘Home’ Actor Playing Multiple Roles in X-Files Season 11

The X-Files season 11 airs in early 2018 on FOX.

Source: EW

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