Gillian Anderson’s return to TV is coming at the perfect time
In the 24 years since “The X-Files” premiered, a lot of ground has been covered in terms of women being treated equally in the workplace, at home and in the streets.
But today, many of our rights are being threatened — and everyday sexism is being tolerated. Look no further than the man we elected president for proof.
At the same time, though, women are banding together and calling out everything from unequal pay to predatory men like Harvey Weinstein and Bill Cosby. That’s why it’s the perfect time for “The X-Files” to return. The show was ahead of its time in terms of presenting a complex, interesting female lead, even though she wasn’t paid as much as her male counterpart at the time. But today, all that has changed and a new season of the show — with equal pay for both leads — is coming back in January 2018.
Last weekend, we finessed our way into New York City Comic Con and listened to a chat with one of the most iconic TV feminists of the last 25 years: Gillian Anderson, a.k.a. Agent Scully of “The X-Files.”
Gillian Anderson spoke on a panel with “X-Files” creator Chris Carter, plus her co-stars David Duchovny and Mitch Pileggi. Moderator Michael Ausiello’s introduction for the award winning actress was on point:
“She’s a badass onscreen and even more so off. A role model for women, girls and gay men everywhere. A pop culture icon. Get up on your f*cking feet and greet her like the f*cking goddess she is: Gillian Anderson.”
Before he could finish his statement, the sold out crowd got on their feet and lost their minds, by the way.
Gillian’s character Dana Scully has been so influential, it’s said she’s inspired an actual increase in women pursuing jobs in medicine, law enforcement, and science — a phenomenon referred to as “The Scully Effect.”
And as Michael said, her badassery extends to her off screen life, too. Earlier this year, Anderson spoke out on Twitter about the lack of women directors on the upcoming season of “The X-Files.”
The tweet went viral, and shortly after it was announced that creator Carter would be adding three women writers, and two women directors for the upcoming 11th season airing in January 2018. How many other actors or actresses have taken a stand against their own show to stick up for what’s right?
— Gillian Anderson (@GillianA) June 29, 2017
This isn’t even the first time Anderson has called out “The X-Files.” She was offered half of what co-star David Duchovny was earning when the show first started. She had no idea they would offer her half the salary for the second time when they brought the show back for season 10 almost 15 years later, and wasn’t afraid to speak out about it.
“Especially in this climate of women talking about the reality of [unequal pay] in this business, I think it’s important that it gets heard and voiced,” she told the Hollywood Reporter. “It was shocking to me, given all the work that I had done in the past to get us to be paid fairly. I worked really hard toward that and finally got somewhere with it.”
Ultimately, Anderson and Duchovny took home equal pay.
During the 45-minute panel on Sunday, the argument of Scully “needing her own desk” was brought to attention by Michael Ausiello. In an early episode titled “Never Again,” Scully asks her partner why she doesn’t have her own desk. But really WHY NOT, Chris Carter?
“Will we get to see Scully’s desk this season?” Ausiello asked.
“No, we’re not going to see Scully’s desk,” Carter responded, with the crowd loudly booing and hissing.
Gillian Anderson fired back and said, “I think she’s taken over Mulder’s desk.” HELL. YES.
The trailer for the upcoming season had fans screaming, crying, and straight up shook. Anderson can be seen flipping tables and shooting bad guys, all while fighting to save the world from total destruction and searching for her only son (talk about multitasking?). Her character is definitely a badass, but so is Gillian Anderson. And we couldn’t be more excited to see the new season.