In last month’s issue, we got a good amount of exposition followed by even more weirdness. This week, the bizarre black oil mythology arc comes to a close (for now). Is it good?
The X-Files: Season 10 #15 (IDW Publishing)
The issue opens with a captured and confused Krychek being interrogated by the Cigarette Smoking Man. During their conversation, it is finally revealed how a not-as-douchey and still alive version of Krychek is back.
“Hey…remember that time I locked you up in a missile silo? Good times…”
While CSM tortures him for information on Sheltem, his mystery boss steps in and says a bunch of cryptic things, causing Krychek to pull an Edge of Tomorrow reset on everyone. Later, CSM is confronted by a bunch of very familiar faces (sigh) before getting “reset” himself.
Meanwhile, Scully and Skinner have tracked Mulder to the Blue Ridge Mountains, where the black oil has jumped hosts again. As a storm rages in the skies above, people with their eyes sewn begin to lumber out of the woods…and if you’re an X-Files fan, you know that means that someone is about to get burned.
Is It Good?
Mystery, especially when it’s born of a massive conspiracy, is a great story hook. It keeps the reader engaged and wanting to know what happens next. Unfortunately, the “mystery” we’ve watched unfold during this story arc makes me want to throw up my hands in disgust.
For starters, the revelation of how Krychek is back makes it so that pretty much any character is fair game to return from the dead. I guess that’s fine, but the gimmick is getting old. Joe Harris has proven plenty of times before that he can write a compelling story without the need of “LOOK WHO’S BACK FROM THE GRAVE”-type stunts. There’s no need to bring back every deceased character from the television series that was interesting.
Now we merely have a status quo that’s moderately different than what we had before. We’re also getting a whole bunch of questions thrown at us without any sort of explanation, which became one of the television series’ major weak points.
On the positive side, the interrogation scene between CSM and Krychek is fantastic stuff. For the second issue in a row, Matthew Smith’s style of artwork is utilized properly, giving us some gorgeously drawn scenes that ALMOST make up for the tangled and tired plot.