A huge favorite here at the Tube File, actress Lucy Lawless, known internationally for her astounding portrayal of Xena on 'Xena
Warrior Princess,' has officially signed on for a story arc/guest role on the popular Fox Sci Fi drama 'The X-Files,' appearing in the first two episodes of the show's ninth season, with additional episodes yet to be determined. Commenting briefly on the casting of Lawless, Frank Spotnitz made the following statement, "We're thrilled to have an opportunity to work with Lucy, whose work we've admired for a long time. We think we've found an interesting and unexpected way to have her join The X-Files family." New Zealand native Lawless' breakout role of Lysia in Hercules and the Amazon Women led to her signature role of Xena in three episodes of 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys'. It wasn't long before those episodes led to her own spin-off series, 'Xena: Warrior Princess,' a ground-breaking show which aired internationally for six years and indeed went out amid a blaze of candid observations. As diehard fans continue to deliberate and debate Xena's ultimate demise, Lawless is aggressively moving
forward— a smart move by an extremely talented actress. Lawless' other television credits have included various guest roles on 'The Simpsons' and 'Just Shoot Me'. She has also been one of the more colorful hosts of NBC's 'Saturday Night Live'. In recent years, Lawless has been named by People Magazine as one of the '50 Most Beautiful People in the World,' one of 'TV's 40 Most Fascinating Stars' and one of the '25 Most Intriguing People of the Year.' The feminist, superhero character, and
soon-to-be icon, 'Xena' was also (deservedly so we might add) named by our pals over at TV Guide as one of the '50 greatest characters' ever on television.
Far be it for those of us at the Tube File to speculate, but, well... you know us... we couldn't
resist— First of all, this is an excellent opportunity for Lawless to finally prove, once and for all, to all of her would-be skeptics (those annoyingly thoughtless journalists who can't seem to see past the oval office at the 'West Wing'), that she can and WILL proceed to astonish us all with her intensely rich performances. Trust us
folks— the woman is truly a prodigious performer... Okay... so second of
all— her character does arrive as a bit of a mystery— keep in mind, however, that Annabeth Gish's character, Agent Monica Reyes, raised several eyebrows during a scene with Agent Scully in the season finale. Several critics, including those of us who happen to pay attention to the layered
details— easily arrived at the conclusion that Reyes may indeed be a lesbian, or quite possibly a bisexual. 'X-Files' producers have stated both off the record and on the record that a lesbian relationship may not be in the cards... exactly. But then, they didn't flat out deny the possibility either. "We've talked about it," executive producer John Shiban told TV Guide last week, regarding the exploration of Agent Reyes' sexual orientation. "But we have [ultimately decided] that it's the kind of baggage we didn't want to deal
with— with this kind of character right now. We had other ideas that we were more excited about. I can see where they got the idea, but our intention was that it is non-sexual." However, he went on to tap dance a bit more and say, "On 'The X-Files,' anything can happen. So I don't want to discount anything. Life is complicated."
(Boy— that's an understatement, just ask any 'Xena' fan)...
We, on the other hand, think it's highly possible that Reyes' sexual orientation could be explored even
further— given Lawless' devout lesbian following from her recent days as the sword-toting action hero with far more substance and depth than most... On the flip side of all of this (just to be the devil's advocate here), if Lawless' character does turn out to be heterosexual, it would certainly put a stop the short-sighted casting process of
"pigeon-holing" her into specific types of roles. But of course, as we all know, it's really anyone's guess as to whether or not Fox will actually have the "cojones" to take their highly coveted 'X-Files' characters into uncharted sexual territory, regardless of how interesting that territory may turn out to be. One thing is certain though, this time around, Lawless' character gets to keep her head exactly where it belongs.
The series is currently scheduled to begin it's 9th season run on November 4th, be sure to check your local listings for dates and times in your area.
Museum Photo © 2001 Ellen Filler
Bridget Petrella is the Publisher and Editor in Chief of UPBEAT
Entertainment News Online. At this point in her life, she's seriously
contemplating a complete and unbridled abandonment of "
typical" network television... opting instead for The Cartoon
Network, Xena Warrior Princess, V.I.P., WWF Wrestling, Nick At Nite's TV
Land, All HBO Original Programming and of course... TNN's Roller Jam.