Saturday, October 28, 2017

From the Secret Files! The X Files--Earth Children Are Weird by Chris Carter and Jason Rekulak

"The alien spaceship vanished into the sky and it was never seen again. THE END"

Dana closed her book.

"That was really scary, Dana," said Fox. "Maybe we should sleep inside the house."

"Don't be silly, Fox," said Dana. You know aliens are not real!"

Dana and Fox are camping out in a tent in their backyard. Fox clutches his flashlight and reminds Dana that, with billions of planets in the universe, there are sure to be curious aliens willing to spy on earth creatures.

"Here we go again...!" says Dana with a smirk.

But just then something happens. What's that bright light? Isn't that what aliens do when they land their ships?


Dana points out that the flash is their porch light being turned on by their parents inside, as they come out on the porch to remind them to turn off the flashlights and go to sleep.

"Time for bed!"

But with the porch light off again, Fox spots a strange and spooky shadow. Could that be an alien?

But no, it's just their dog, Buster, looking for a hug. Okay, but what's that giant footprint Fox sees?

Dana points out that it's the site for their new swimming pool, just begun the day before.

Suddenly they hear an alien noise:


It's just an owl. And that squeaky noise? Is it aliens planning an attack? Dana drags Fox out of the tent to investigate. No, it's the swing, moving in the breeze.

"I guess I do have a really wild imagination," admits Fox.

Dana readily agrees as the two head back to their tent.

"Did you leave the tent unzipped?" Fox wonders.

"No," says Dana. "Did you?"

Those couldn't be green aliens inside their tent, eating their popcorn, could it?

They'll never know (or will they?), in Chris Carter and Jason Rekulak's The X-Files: Earth Children Are Weird: A Picture Book (Pop Classics) (Quirk Books, 2017), as Dana and Fox dash inside to the safety of their own beds. Their parents give each other a knowing look and then exchange a few whispered words...

"//%#@**//!," says Dad. "//Squee HOOO!//" snickers Mom. "??OIVAIUYI!//" woofs Buster.

The lurking alien spaceship in the sky might be a hint that perhaps Fox's fears aren't too, er, far out, in Carter and Rekulak's rebooting of the well-known TV show's premise. It's still a wacky but promising plotline for early elementary readers (who may sometimes wonder what planet their own family members are from,) and the authors, helped by the cartooning skills of artist Kim Smith, manage enough sight gag clues to keep readers wondering right to the last page. For TV nostalgics, Publishers Weekly points out the genesis of this picture book series, saying, "In this picture book riff on The X-Files, Fox and Dana are best buddies having a backyard campout, fulfilling the same roles they did in the cult TV series."

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