By Sydney Fromm
The X-Files aired its first scenes in 1993, introducing fans everywhere to the dynamic duo of Agents Dana Scully and Fox Mulder. Immediately fans could see that this show was different from all the others. Not only did it focus on finding the truth about the extraterrestrial but the woman in the partnership was the skeptic and the man was the believer.
Scully is a strong-willed, outspoken woman of science woman of science working in an all-boys club. She is highly intelligent and one of the best agents the FBI has in throughout the series. Initially pared with Mulder to debunk his theories, she soon is thrown into a world that no longer makes scientific sense. Scully struggles with believing in the things that she sees on her and Mulder’s cases, causing frustration for her partner.
Dana Scully provides the strong, independent character that all women were (and still are) looking for in the stories that they love. This was proven when Fox brought the beloved show back to air nearly fifteen years after the series had supposedly turned off the cameras. As Scully and Mulder’s friendship and love story pans out, Scully does not lose her intelligence or importance as her own person. Mulder is saved several times by the sassy redheaded agent, which is something uncommon in many television shows and movies.
Scully continues to be an example to women everywhere with her determination, strength, and intelligence as well as her emotions. She has soft mothering side, and her love of animals that seem to have their owners eaten or turned into a monster.
In the series Scully is often seen helping Mulder reign in his emotions about a cases they're working on. This is the complete opposite of what most crime and sci-fi series do with their characters. Scully’s beliefs as a scientist are never taken from her, but her willingness to accept that some things cannot be explained by the science she understands grows throughout the series. If Mulder is the paranormal, Scully is the scientific that balances it all out.
The only times we see Scully as the "damsel in distress" is when she is unconscious. And Mulder's usually a wreck during these scenes, showing the audience how strongly he relies on his partner.
Agent Dana Scully is such an impactful character that there is even a term to describe her influence on women entering the STEM field. “The Scully Effect” describes the increase in women in the scientific and medical field. If a fictional character can empower women to reach goals such as these, she must be one powerful woman that could be a role model for all.
As the revival episodes come to a close, we are once again mourning the loss of Agent Scully on our screens. However, she has proven to be an extremely influential woman and will continue to be so until the time when humans no longer populate the Earth.
Because let’s face it. The X-Files will never die.
(Image via Fox TV)