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How X-Files (And Science Fiction) Shaped My Worldview

Not long ago (1993, squarely in my peak formative years), in this very galaxy (Earth One), the X-Files premiered on primetime TV. I was hooked instantly – the provocative content, the gritty cinematography, the vocabulary, the banter, the suspense, the scientist vs. the dreamer.
I think what resonated with me was an idea more than a scene or character was the idea that pursuit of “truth” – where truth means answers – was omnipresent.
Scully and Mulder, often at odds with their interpretations of various scenarios, were always looking for answers, results, data. And regardless of how often they were at odds, they were a partnership with a common goal.
This spoke to me as a kid trying to find my way in a confusing world, and it speaks to me as an adult trying to make sense of Big Questions surrounded by people of diverse backgrounds with varied and various perspectives, opinions and expertise.
For me, science fiction teaches resilience. There isn’t a single example I can think of across the genre or any of its formats where any accomplishment came easily for the protagonist. It taught me that you will have dissenters and that you need to stick to your passion and your goal in the face of obstacles.
Seemingly in conflict with that, it also teaches fans to be open to new ideas. You will be exposed to many inputs, and you need to be open to seeing things from a different perspective and come to new conclusions.
Bringing this love and appreciation of science and sci-fi to my kids is one of my greatest joys.

We embed science into our lives, from messing around with dry ice and practicing engineering with LEGO to thinking about how we would apply the Scientific Method to everyday questions. And you better believe we're enjoying all the sci-fi movies and TV shows together! 

I can draw examples of important life lessons (grit, problem-solving, inclusivity, courage) — and it’s just plain fun.

Pictured: Rachel and her daughter, Zoe, featured on Princess Awesome. Photograph by Katie Jett Walls - Red Turtle Photography​.