Back in 2008, Insight Editions published "The Complete X-Files: Behind the Series, The Myths and The Movies" - a large, hardback book that explored The X-Files in glorious, full-colour detail. Following the broadcast of Season 10 earlier this year, "The Complete X-Files" was no longer quite so ‘complete.’ Now, however, the book has been re-issued as the Revised and Updated Edition to include all the latest additions to the X-Files universe, so we took a look at the new edition.
The original book spanned the entire history of the show, from its inception through the release of I Want to Believe, and was filled with photos, behind the scenes information, quotes, and reminiscences from the people involved with the show including Gillian, David, Chris, and countless writers, directors, producers and more. Although known to be riddled with typos, the book remained an interesting and beautiful book for Philes who wanted to revisit the show.
For the vast majority of its 272 pages (up from 248), the New and Revised Edition is utterly identical to its predecessor, minus a few minor formatting changes and a new introduction from Chris Carter. It is only when you reach the end that the new content really appears, with the addition of a sixth chapter: “The Truth Is Still Out There.” This chapter covers Season 10 in detail, from the initial discussions which convinced the cast and crew to bring the show back to our screens, through to broadcast and hopes for yet more X-Files to come. There is an episode-by-episode look through the mini-series, behind the scenes notes, and thoughts from three of the biggest Season 10 guest stars - Joel McHale, Rhys Darby, and Kumail Nanjiani.
For me, the decision to replace all the photos on both the front and rear covers with shots from Season 10 doesn’t sit right, given that the book is still about The X-Files as a whole, not just the latest episodes. I do also find myself wondering how many people will buy this edition when rumors are abounding regarding an eleventh season, which will presumably result in yet another revised edition in the future? I was disappointed to note that the extras included with the original edition - a replica Lone Gunmen newspaper, script cards, and posters - were not included with this new edition, and that many of the mistakes in the original have not been corrected. For example, the episode “Emily” is still missing from the guide to season five episodes.
For those who don’t already own a copy of the original, this new edition of "The Complete X-Files" is worth the money. It remains a beautiful book for Philes, with plenty of interesting and amusing anecdotes despite minor mistakes. For those of us already in possession of a copy, the 24 extra pages don’t really seem worth the cost of buying the book all over again, especially given the possibility of more editions on the future.