Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) are back to solve the mysteries of the universe in The X-Filesrevival. With just over a week until the series returns on Fox, there are more questions than ever about the iconic investigators of the extraterrestrial and what they've been up to since the series originally went off the air in 2003.
Duchovny, Anderson, revival co-star Joel McHale and series creator Chris Carter answered questions about the upcoming six-episode season at the Television Critics Association winter previews on Friday. Here are the facts you need to know:
1. It's more of a mini-season than a mini-story: Carter says that the truncated season will still reflect the spirit of an original 24-episode arc rather than being an X-Files event series. There will be a mix of mythology and monster-of-the-week episodes among the six. "The signature of the show was that we would do a mythology episode, then you could do a monster-of-the-week episode and go right back to the mythology episode and it worked," Carter said. "In this case, there are only six episodes so we had to do it in a shorter arc."
2. Baby William is far from forgotten: One of the remaining mysteries from the original series is what happened to Mulder and Scully's son William. Anderson says that mystery around the baby they had to give up will be very present when the series returns. "It affects her a lot. It's a big conversation throughout the series," she said. "William is very, very present through all of these episodes. It's emotional for her. So we get to hear a lot about [him]."
3. The mythology episodes will bookend the series: Carter says that there are two "strong mythology episodes" in the six-episode arc and they will bookend the series. The premiere will work as a bridge between the finale and the revival and allow new fans entry into the show. "It's a re-entry into a series that hasn't been on the air for 13 years. I think you needed to get back into the characters' lives, their quest, where they are, where their relationship is and where their professional lives are," Carter said.
4. The Lone Gunmen are back, but they aren't alive: Carter confirms that the Lone Gunmen died in the original series and their return in the revival will not be a resurrection from the dead. "The way that you see them return will explain itself. We don't just bring them back as live characters. They are back in a completely different way. They are actually back in a fantasy," he said.
5. Our post-9/11 world has had a great impact on The X-Files: Mulder and Scully began looking for aliens in the '90s, during a time of relative peace and prosperity. Now, conspiracy theories are more abundant than ever. That tension between civilians and the government provides a rich backdrop for this new iteration of episodes. "We're living in a time now where there's a tremendous amount of distrust of authority, the government, even the media. This is a really interesting time to be telling X-Files stories," Carter said. "Conspiracy sites are chock-a-block with the most outrageous stuff, but some of it actually is quite plausible. I think that's what you find in the mythology episodes here."
The X-Files premieres Jan. 24 on Fox.
WATCH: The X-Files stars reveal what it's like to return: