Why We Have Trouble Saying Goodbye to Our Favorite Shows


28 Feb
28Feb

Susan Leighton

Gillian Anderson took home her second Golden Globe yesterday for her portrayal of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in Netflix’s hit series, The Crown. According to Deadline, the actress received her first award in 1997 for the role of Dana Scully in the iconic The X-Files

What is interesting to note (and sort of indicative of our nostalgia loving culture) was one of the questions that a member of the press asked her immediately after her win. Of course, it wasn’t about her achievement. Instead, she was asked if there were more X-Files in her future. Her immediate response to that inquiry: 

“Oh, gosh. No.” 

I think what was even more telling was the fact that Deadline referred to the role of Scully as “the paranormal investigator she’s built a career on playing.” Never mind the fact that she appeared in American Gods, Hannibal, The Fall and Sex Education… 

Chris Carter’s homage to Kolchak: The Night Stalker was a part of my formative years so I understand that Gillian Anderson is forever intertwined with Mulder’s skeptical partner. And yes, I was glued to my TV set when the series returned in 2016. 

However, as sad as I was to see it finally end two years later, I was grateful for Fox reviving the show. There was some chatter after the last episode aired about whether or not the principles would return if the network was interested. While David Duchovny and Carter considered it, Anderson felt that she was ready to experience other roles. 

Naturally, fans were annoyed that she wouldn’t even consider reprising Scully but honestly, the ratings for Season 11 didn’t warrant a Season 12. When all was said and done, Carter decided to close the case files for good. 

Right now, everyone from The X-Files has moved on. Duchovny is a successful novelist penning New York Times Bestsellers. Anderson, obviously, is thriving as a thespian. Still, we can’t seem to let go of our favorite stars. 

Is it because we live in uncertain times where in the span of a year everything has changed, thanks to COVID-19? The world we inhabit is restricted where movie theaters, bars and other public places are no longer available to us. We exist on Zoom calls and social media instead of actually interacting with others face to face. 

Maybe, we equate our favorite TV series with a return to a sense of normalcy. That’s why in recent years, we have seen new versions of MacGyver and Hawaii 5-0 appear on the networks. 

Let’s not forget recent revivals of beloved comedy shows like Arrested Development and Will & Grace. Now, Paramount+ will be bringing us the updated adventures of Dr. Frasier Crane with Kelsey Grammer. 

Perhaps, the reluctance to say goodbye to characters that we have adored lies in the fact that they are old friends that offered us an escape for an hour or so from our mundane existences. Luckily, whenever we get the urge to travel back in time, we can always revisit those shows either on a streaming service or on DVDs or Blu-rays.

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