X-Files Collectibles: The Truth Is Right Here
By Kevin Cook
With the recent release of “The X-Files: I Want To Believe” theatrical movie on DVD, there is renewed interest in the groundbreaking sci-fi series that ran for nine phenomenally popular seasons (1993-2002) on the Fox network and spawned a vast menagerie of cool collectibles.
X-Philes, as the show’s devotees are known, couldn’t get enough of the paranormal adventures of Fox “Spooky” Mulder, a maverick FBI agent who never met a government conspiracy or beastie he didn’t believe in, and his skeptical, by-the-book partner, Dana Scully. The merchandising blitz of “X-Files” collectibles let fans plumb the depths of the series’ beguiling mythology long after the credits rolled.
As a guide to completists who absolutely must have everything to do with the show—and this writer is one of you—WorthPoint presents this hall of fame of “X-Files” collectibles.
FIGURES: McFarlane Toys’ “The X-Files: Fight the Future” action figures were a tie-in to the first movie spin-off, a box office smash in 1998. Featuring serviceable likenesses of series stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, figures include Mulder and Scully (in both FBI and arctic garb), Attack Alien and Primitive Man. These are common on eBay at bargain prices in mint-in-package condition. (Another “Fight the Future” tie-in, Mattel’s Barbie and Ken as Scully and Mulder, is creepier than anything ever seen on the show. Trust me.)
The incredibly lifelike, limited edition “X-Files” figures unveiled by Sideshow Collectibles in 2004 quickly sold out and are highly sought after in the collectible aftermarket. The 12-inch figures—including Mulder, Scully, Assistant Director Skinner, Cigarette Smoking Man and Krycek—boast 30 points of articulation and come with a slew of nifty accessories. View the entire line at Sideshow Collectibles.
In 1997, sculptor Randy Bowen created disturbingly realistic “X-Files” resin statues for Dark Horse Comics in homage to characters from two of the show’s most popular episodes: the flukeman from “The Host” and the abducted smoking alien from “Jose Chung’s ‘From Outer Space.’” These high-end “X-Files” collectibles can often be found online for considerably less than their original $125-$150 MSRP.
TRADING CARDS: Three companies have issued highly collectible “X-Files” trading cards: Topps (Seasons 1-3, “The X-Files: Fight the Future,” X-Files Showcase Widevision), Intrepid (X-Files Contact) and Inkworks (Seasons 4-9, X-Files Connections, “The X-Files: I Want To Believe”). While all are desirable, Inkworks’ products, including numerous autograph cards and Pieceworks™ cards (featuring actual cast-worn fragments of clothing) are absolutely, drop-dead gorgeous. More information, visit Inkworks’ site.
In 1996, USPC Games introduced “The X-Files” Collectible Card Game, which allowed X-Philes to “overcome conspiracies and governmental cover-ups as well as paranormal phenomena and supernatural activities as you attempt to solve the mysteries of ‘The X-Files.’”
BOOKS: The list of “X-Files” compendiums, exposés, scientific tomes, biographies and novelizations would fill a small library. Notable original “X-Files” novels include: Kevin J. Anderson’s three bestsellers, “Ground Zero,” “Ruins,” “Antibodies” and Charles Grant’s “Goblins” and “Whirlwind.”
Nonfiction standouts: “The Unofficial X-Files Companion” by N.E. Genge, “The X-Files Book of the Unexplained” (volumes one and two) by Jane Goldman and, last but not least, “The Complete X-Files: Behind the Series, the Myths, and the Movies,” a definitive guide (published in 2008) by Matt Hurwitz, lavishly illustrated and featuring scads of bonus pullouts.
MAGAZINES: During the program’s heyday, the sultry mugs of Duchovny and Anderson peered out from the covers of just about every mainstream magazine from “GQ” to “Vanity Fair,” with “TV Guide” and “Entertainment Weekly” devoting countless features to the series. Memorable parodies appeared in “Mad” and “Cracked,” and the erudite British magazine, “Fortean Times,” delightfully examined the show’s mythos with a cocked eyebrow and tongue firmly in cheek. The most infamous—and arguably, most collectible—“X-Files” mag is the May 16, 1996 issue of “Rolling Stone,” with Duchovny and Anderson cuddling in the buff on the cover and series creator Chris Carter joining the stars inside for a photographic ménage à trois.
The quarterly “The X-Files Official Magazine” bowed in the spring of 1997 and enjoyed a long run of feature-filled, graphically stunning issues.
COMIC BOOKS: Featuring original stories and adaptations of series episodes, Topps Comics published 41 issues and two annuals of “The X-Files,” all with cover art by Miran Kim and interior art by Charles Adlard, Gordon Purcell and Alex Saviuk. The current, 38th edition of the Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide values the premiere issue at $30 in near-mint condition. Topps collected the first 12 issues of the comic in a pair of trade paperbacks with Checker Book Publishing gathering issues 13 through 26 in a three-volume paperback series.
In July 2008, DC Comics/Wildstorm released “The X-Files #0,” which segued into an “X-Files” miniseries with moody art (several notches above the Topps series) by Brian Denham and scripts by series alumnus Frank Spotnitz and comics legend Marv Wolfman.
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