On the television series The X-Files, an "X-File" is a fictional case that has been deemed unsolvable by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and transferred to the X-Files unit. The files constitute an unassigned project outside the Bureau mainstream that is more or less concerned with unexplained phenomena.
According to the series mythology the very first X-File was initiated in 1946 by J. Edgar Hoover. It contained information about a series of murders that occurred in Northwest America during World War II, seven of which took place in Browning, Montana. Each of the victims were basically ripped to shreds and consumed, as if by a wild animal. However, many of the victims were found in their homes, as if they had allowed the killer to enter. In 1946, police cornered what they believed to be such an animal in a cabin in Glacier National Park. They shot it, but when they entered the cabin to retrieve the carcass, they found only the body of Richard Watkins. The murders stopped that year. Believing that the case was too bizarre to be solved adequately, Hoover labeled it unsolved and locked it away in the hope that it would eventually be forgotten. However, the murders resumed in 1954 and continued to occur every few years.
In 1952, an X-File regarding something that killed cattle and terrorized the human inhabitants of Point Pleasant, West Virginia was added to the cases. After witnesses described the culprits as primitive-looking men with red piercing eyes, they became known as the moth men. The case detailing this phenomenon was consequently filed under "M", within the X-Files.
In the same year, Dorothy Bahnsen, a clerk working at the FBI Headquarters, was responsible for the files. She had originally filed the cases under U for "unsolved", but had moved them to a more spacious X cabinet when she ran out of room. There, they began to be unofficially known as "X-files". The director's office still decided which cases were filed under X, but also discouraged people from looking at the ones that had been labeled unsolved. Special agent Arthur Dales was one of the first agents to try to tackle the cases. He had some success, but the FBI and their superiors wanted several cases to remain unsolved and Agent Dales eventually retired in obscurity.
It wasn't until 1990 that another agent decided to take a look. Special Agent Fox Mulder was generally considered the best analyst in the FBI's Violent Crimes Section. At first, he thought the X-Files seemed like "a garbage dump for UFO sightings, alien abduction reports, the kind of stuff that most people [would] laugh at as being ridiculous". However, Mulder soon became fascinated by the files and read hundreds of those he was allowed access to. He read everything he could about paranormal phenomena and the occult. He eventually transferred to the X-Files Section and worked on some cases with his girlfriend at the time, Diana Fowley. Fowley was an FBI agent with knowledge about and a belief in parapsychology. She stopped working on the cases when her relationship with Mulder ended and she accepted an assignment abroad.
In March 1992, the X-Files were stored in Mulder's office in the basement of the FBI's J. Edgar Hoover Building in Washington, D.C. Mulder's superiors distrusted his methods and, as a result, Section Chief Scott Blevins assigned Agent Dana Scully to work with Mulder on the cases. Blevins claimed to believe that Mulder had developed a consuming devotion to the X-Files and that Scully, who was trained as a medical doctor, would lend proper scientific analysis to the cases. In fact, Scully later learned that she had been assigned to spy on Mulder.
Eventually, Scully came to believe in the existence of alien life and in a powerful conspiracy inside the American government that worked to keep the aliens a secret. The proof establishing these facts that Mulder and Scully uncovered and added to the X-Files was overwhelming, and even scientifically undeniable.
While the agents continued to investigate the X-Files, a man they referred to as "Deep Throat" provided them with top secret information that helped with the cases. However, he was later killed for helping the agents and the cases were shut down.
While operating as a general assignment agent in 1994, Mulder received an anonymous phone call from a mysterious man. The man told him that the X-Files had to be reopened. Once the two later met, the mysterious man claimed that the government conspiracy had killed "Deep Throat", closed down the X-Files and separated the agents assigned to the cases as an initial attempt to secure the truth they were hiding.
A short time later, Mulder offered his badge and the X-Files to Skinner, in return for the whereabouts of a certain member of the government conspiracy.
List of X-Files
- 73317- Investigating the disappearance of Dana Scully. (TXF: "3")
- 621517- Investigating the murder of Melissa Scully. (TXF: "Apocrypha")
- 11214893- Investigating the arson and murders committed by Cecil L'Ively. (TXF: "Fire")
- DF101364- Investigating the disappearance of Colonel Robert Budahas. (TXF: "Deep Throat")
- X-40253- Investigating the disappearance of Samantha Mulder. (TXF: "Conduit")
- X-40271- Investigating the murder of Officer Charlie Morris. (TXF: "Born Again")
- X-60794 Unknown case (TXF: "Dreamland II")
- X-71009- A file with details on General Assignment Agent Fox Mulder. (TXF: "Dreamland II")
- X-97554- Investigating a peculiar spacecraft discovered in Africa. (TXF: "Provenance")
- X-120898- Investigating the disappearance of FBI Special Agent Raymond Crouch. (TXF: "Millennium")
- X 129202- Investigating the Baltimore, Maryland murders by Eugene Victor Tooms. (TXF: "Tooms)
- X-152830- Investigating the disappearance of Cassandra Spender. (TXF: "The Red and the Black")
- X-167512- A file detailing visionary encounters with the dead. (TXF: "Young at Heart")
- X280911- Investigating the murder of Special Agent Robert Comer. (TXF: "Providence")
- X-491679- Unknown case (TXF: "The End")
- X-525652- Investigating the murders committed by Edward Skur. (TXF: "Travelers")
- X 649176- Investigating reports of men who could change into a wolf. (TXF: "Shapes")
- X667386- Investigating the peculiar insect activity in Miller's Grove, Massachusetts. (TXF: "War of the Coprophages")
- X-751483 - Pertaining to the Death of Special Agent Fox Mulder Possible hallucination of the article in the real case file (TXF: "Field Trip")
- X 964394- Unknown case (TXF: "Deadalive")
- X256933VW- Investigating the Trinity Killers. (TXF: "3")
- XWC060361 - Investigating the Church of the Red Museum in connection with teenage kidnappings. (TXF: "Red Museum")