Tony Black reviews The X-Files: Funko Universe…
A bevy of talented creators seek the truth—and some laughs—with this Funko version of your favorite FBI agents! After this, you’ll believe that Scully and Mulder couldn’t be any cuter!
SEE ALSO: Check out a preview of The X-Files: Funko Universe here
Now this is a real curio. Everyone has seen or owns a Funko, right? The dinky little figurines which all have the same distinct, squat, big eyed cute look about them? Whoever created Funko is a genius because they’ve managed to market these very child-like figures next to every licensed entertainment property imaginable. As many adults like the idea of a little Funko of their favourite TV or movie character on their mantelpiece as much as a child would. Branching out beyond that into the comic book world seems a logical step of Funko’s continued dominance of the adult geek market while also entertaining children at the same time, hence a variety of IDW one-shot issues of your favourite properties given the Funko treatment, comic-style.
For The X-Files, we get four short stories written by writers including Matthew Dow Smith, long time X-Files comic artist of the main Joe Harris series, plus Denton J. Tipton, the editor at IDW who many of these series and properties run through. By way of introduction, ‘To Believe or Not to Believe’ written by Derek Fridolfs & coloured by Pamela Lovas, gives us a whistle stop tour of the mythology, monsters and Scully’s scepticism as the very basis of the dynamic between she & Mulder is ran through, with aliens aplenty. ‘You Are What You Eat’ from writer Mike Raicht is the most unique tale, given it has zero dialogue and communicates through thought images as Mulder & Scully investigate black oil milkshakes, allowing Charles Paul Wilson III’s colourful artistry to take full centre.
My favourite is probably Dow Smith’s ‘Escape from Space Mountain’, drawn by Chris Fenoglio, which has the best blend of story and comedy as Mulder must escape a government base with the aid of a captured EBE. ‘Sasquatch on the Set’ from Tipton, drawn by Troy Little, to some degree feels the purest kind of X-File story here until it takes an unexpected, fun left turn toward the end which speaks to the indulgence, nods, winks and tongue in cheek the entire one-shot has espoused. The whole exercise is akin to the comedic episodes of the show – it doesn’t take The X-Files too seriously.
Some take issue with that, or perhaps more that Funko are cashing in via comic books, with this issue serving as much a marketing, sales ploy than a true piece of artistic expression worthy of The X-Files. To a degree that may be the case but you’d be hard pressed not to enjoy this Funko issue overall; the characterisation & writing of our leads is present and correct, it’s bold and colourful, fun to read, and it’s by a group of genuine TXF fans who know the series so well they can cram in a ton of in-jokes from the series and sight gags which long term fans will pick up on. Does Funko really have a place in The X-Files universe? Maybe not. If you can simply enjoy this as a light, frothy piece of colourful entertainment, as much for kids as for adults, any X-Files fan will find something here to raise a smile.