**Warning: The following post includes MAJOR SPOILERS for The X-Files Season 11 finale – My Struggle IV. If you have not watched the episode and you want to remain spoiler free, then stop reading now. You’ve been warned.**
**Oh… and this is quite a long post.**
Last night, the final episode of The X-Files aired in the US. Unless the show gets a last minute reprieve (or a reboot), My Struggle IV is the end of the road for agents Mulder & Scully.
After 25 years, 218 episodes and two movies, The X-Files is done. But how did it end?
This post explains how the show ended, who lives, who dies and what’s next for Mulder & Scully.
How does The X-Files end?
The X-Files ends with the 218th episode, My Struggle IV – the fourth chapter in an ongoing arch that started with the first episode of Season 10 (My Struggle I).
In My Struggle IV, Mulder & Scully search for Scully’s son, William, who is supposedly the key to saving/ending the world. During the course of the episode, Mulder & Scully learn the truth of William’s existence – that he is purely the product of science.
The shadow conspiracy that threatens the existence of the human race is shut down, at least in its current form, and the episode ends with Scully indicating that she is pregnant with Mulder’s baby – thus giving them both a non-supernatural child and hope for the future.
Do Mulder & Scully die in The X-Files finale?
No, both Mulder & Scully survive the events of My Struggle IV.
Does The Cigarette Smoking Man die in The X-Files finale?
Yes, or at least it appears as though he is dead – The Cigarette Smoking Man has a way of cheating death. In My Struggle IV, Mulder shoots The Cigarette Smoking Man numerous times in the chest, before his body falls into a body of water.
Does William die in The X-Files finale?
No. William is shot in the head, but this does not kill him. At the end of the episode, William is seen to have survived the shooting.
Does Walter Skinner die in The X-Files finale?
Yes – it appears as if he does die, although Skinner’s death is not confirmed. The Cigarette Smoking Man runs over Skinner with his car and he is left for dead.
Does Alvin Kersh die in The X-Files finale?
No. Alvin Kersh makes an appearance in My Struggle IV, but he does not die.
Does Monica Reyes die in The X-Files finale?
Yes. Walter Skinner shoots Monica Reyes in the head, killing her instantly.
Does John Doggett appear in The X-Files Finale?
No. John Doggett (last seen in the Season 9 finale, The Truth) does not appear in My Struggle IV. The character is not even mentioned.
Does Alex Krycek appear in The X-Files finale?
No, Alex Krycek does not appear in My Struggle IV. Krycek was killed in the Season 8 episode, Existence, before the character made one final dream-like appearance in the Season 9 finale, The Truth.
Do aliens invade in The X-Files finale?
No. There is no alien invasion in My Struggle IV. The alien conspiracy storyline was concluded at the beginning of Season 11 – aliens no longer pose a threat to the human race. Humanity is the biggest threat in The X-Files.
Is My Struggle IV the final episode of The X-Files?
Yes. At the time of writing this post, My Struggle IV is the final episode of The X-Files.
Could The X-Files continue after Season 11?
My Struggle IV concludes with an open ending, allowing for further episodes should the show continue into a 12th season. However, actress Gillian Anderson has previously made it clear that she will no longer return to the role of Agent Dana Scully should the show be revived again. Speaking to TV Insider in December 2017, Anderson said: “I’ve said from the beginning this is it for me. I was a bit surprised by people’s (shocked) reaction to my announcement… because my understanding was that this was a single season.”
David Duchovny has indicated he is open to return for more episodes, should he be asked, but he is also happy to leave The X-Files where it is.
Does The X-Files conclude in a satisfactory way?
This is completely subjective, depending on what you expect from a series finale.
Many of The X-Files’ ongoing story arcs (The shadowy conspiracy, the search for Mulder’s sister etc) were wrapped up during the original run of the show (1993-2002), many within the first seven seasons. When the show finished its original run, the 201st/202nd episode of The X-Files, The Truth was the first ‘ending’ for the series.
A second ‘ending’ came in 2008 when The X-Files was revived as a movie – The X-Files: I Want to Believe. During the course of the movie, Mulder & Scully are drafted back into the FBI to work on a case. It is indicated that the characters have a somewhat strained relationship, but the film has an open ending, suggesting Mulder & Scully just continue on in a similar state to how we find them.
The X-Files was revived in 2016 for a 10th season, which in turn led to an 11th season. Therefore, My Struggle IV is effectively the show’s third ‘ending’ and concludes a number of story beats set up between Season 10 & Season 11 (2016 & 2018).
This series finale creates more of a resting point than a definitive conclusion, but it allows for the characters to simply move on with their lives. This conclusion is open to viewer interpretation – but the most likely outcome is that Mulder & Scully move on with their lives, away from the FBI, spending time watching their (as-yet-unborn) child grew up.