Warning: The X-Files season 11 finale spoilers ahead
As season 11 of The X-Files comes to an end, creator Chris Carter is forced to defend the show's frankly bizarre swansong for Agent Dana Scully.
This could be a (last) case for Mulder and Scully as Gillian Anderson bows out of her 25-year stint as the sultry sci-fi enthusiast. The X-Files has preempted Anderson's departure for a while now, and fans assumed that Carter would give the character a definitive end in the show's waning years. However, with more questions than answers, The X-Files wrapped its current run of episodes on March 21 with one of the biggest cliffhangers it has ever faced.
Now, speaking to TVLine, Carter has revealed why he left the door open for Scully, even if Anderson is out for the count:
"I can’t imagine there wouldn’t be more X-Files, in some shape or form. I think there are lots more stories to tell and ways to tell them. I’m leaving this as a giant cliffhanger, and Gillian has announced that she’s not coming back. Hard-core X-Files fans know there have been no real endings on the show."
The X-Files has always been complicated and controversial in its finales, but season 11 raised the bar in that respect. However, Carter seems more than happy to bear the brunt of social media reaction to his finale:
"People will either love me or hate me. [Laughs] I think they’ll have reasons for both. It certainly is one of the most interesting cliffhangers that the show has ever had."
As the events of 'My Struggle IV' unfolded, it turned out that Mulder's son William wasn't his at all, confirming the long-held theory that Scully shared a child with the villainous Cigarette Smoking Man. Carter wrote and directed the episode, which was just as goofy as some of The X-Files' most insane plots over the decades. It turned out that William had altered his own DNA to become a monster that could blow people up with his mind.
William morphed in Mulder and forced Cigarette Smoking Man to kill him, just before the real Mulder arrived to off arguably the show's biggest villain. Lifting the curtain on many years of Mulder and Scully's Ross/Rachel relationship, Anderson's final act as Scully was the bombshell that she was pregnant (again). This time Mulder really was the father. A post-credit scene of Willaim having survived his bullet to the brain certainly left enough plot threads for a continuation, but is there really any need?
While Carter himself remains positive that the show must go on, it looks increasingly likely that this could be the end of the road for The X-Files. If the show miraculously made it to season 12, how would the Carter explain away Scully and her bouncing baby? However, remembering when season 8 and 9 ran largely without Duchovney, the cancelation of The X-Files now could be a good thing. With an absence of either Mulder or Scully, something just doesn't work for Fox's long-running show, so perhaps it is best to leave The Truth where it is and let everyone get on with their lives?