Here's a puzzle even Mulder and Scully would be hard-pressed to solve: How do you wrap up nearly a decade's worth of convoluted — and some might say downright undecipherable — mythology in just two hours? That's the challenge currently facing producers of Fox's The X-Files, which ends its nine-year run on May 19.
"The truth is, it would be impossible to answer all of the questions people might have," executive producer Frank Spotnitz tells TV Guide Online. "More than answering questions, the [final episode will be] about giving meaning to the story that we've told for the past nine years — giving closure not just to the hard plot of The X-Files, but to the lives of the characters."
Still, Spotnitz — who is mapping out the series finale with X-Files creator Chris Carter — concedes that tackling the drama's myriad of unsolved mysteries (Gibson Praise, those pesky bees, Scully's hairdos) will be tricky. "If you're really a fanatical viewer, the important questions have already been answered," he says. "But because most people aren't fanatical viewers, we're going to retell some things, and I suppose some new answers will come out.
"I've been looking on the Internet at how people have assembled the mythology in their own minds, and many of them have drawn false connections," Spotnitz adds. "They've said that things are linked that aren't. So, [the finale] will be an authoritative version of the history of the show."
Luckily, a critical piece of X-Files lore will be back to help guide viewers through the special two-hour episode: David Duchovny (aka Mulder). When last we saw the believer, he was smacking lips with his fave skeptic, Scully (Gillian Anderson). So, naturally we have to ask: Come May 19, should X-Philes prepare themselves for an X-rated (wink, wink) reunion? In a word or two: Don't count on it!
"The Mulder-Scully romance has always been understated, and I don't think you're going to see us suddenly change our stripes in the last two hours," he says. "But that doesn't mean that their romance isn't central to the show. The resolution of that storyline will be very important."
Remaining episodes will also close the book on a number of other X-plots: The April 21 show will serve as a conclusion to the ill-fated Lone Gunmen spinoff; the April 28 episode (co-written and directed by Duchovny) will be a pivotal one for Scully; and the May 5 installment will address the mystery surrounding the death of Doggett's son."We've really had time in these last few episodes to plan for the end," Spotnitz says. "I think we're going into this with our eyes open."