Short-lived spinoff of The X-Files featuring the adventures of Mulder's conspiracy-crazy friends the Lone Gunmen. The series lasted from March to June, 2001.
The show focused on small-time conspiracies rather than mythological beasts and alien invasions, but while it was more plausible than The X-Files it was also more lighthearted. Attempts to create a serious Myth Arc were thwarted when the series was cancelled after only thirteen episodes. The X-Files episode "Jump the Shark" was a Fully-Absorbed Finale for the show.
If for nothing else, the show is notable in that its pilot episode "predicted" the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. Also noted for predicting what happened after that, too.
- Backup Twin: Kimmy the Geek is played by the same actor as Jimmy the Geek, a hacker friend of the Gunmen who was Killed Off for Real in an episode of The X-Files. Word of God confirmed that Kimmy is indeed Jimmy's identical twin brother.
- Badass Long Hair: Langly seems to be going for this. It doesn't work.
- Badly-Battered Babysitter: The Gunmen and Jimmy in "Three Men and a Smoking Diaper".
- Berserk Button: Never, ever, make fun of Langly's hair.
- Book Dumb: Jimmy. He cleans computer keyboards with soap and water, puts used coffee filters through the shredder, and doesn't know "geography" from "geology", amongst other things. But he's also much more empathetic and in tune with human behaviour than the other Gunmen or even Yves, and sometimes this actually puts him one step ahead of the others.
- The Cameo: David Duchovny makes one (uncredited) as his X-Files character in the season finale.
- Chekhov's Bull Testicles: A slightly weird example in "Like Water For Octane".
- Chivalrous Pervert: Frohike.
- Classy Cat Burglar: Yves Adele Harlow.
- Cliff Hanger: "All About Yves," with the issues resolved on The X-Files "Jump the Shark" episode almost a year later. (Interestingly, the trio appeared a few times there before then - with the Season 9 premiere showing them immediately after their cliffhanger predicament.)
- Conspiracy Theorist
- Deadpan Snarker: Langly, Frohike, and Yves.
- Descended Creator (Tom Braidwood was cast as Frohike while serving as an assistant director on The X-Files. Allegedly the casting director said "we need Frohike to be your typical Dirty Old Man -- like Braidwood over there.")
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Yves. Jimmy does most of the defrosting.
- Ditzy Genius: Langly, and Frohike to an extent.
- Mr. Fanservice: One of the reasons Jimmy was introduced, according to Word of God.
- Five-Man Band:
- One character refers to the Gunmen as a "little mongoloid Girl Scout troop".
- Fully-Absorbed Finale (which doesn't end well for the trio.)
- Genius Ditz: Jimmy, who appears to have zero common sense and the personality of a golden retriever, yet will inevitably shock everyone with a brilliant suggestion.
- Government Conspiracy
- Hello, Nurse!: Yves.
- Heterosexual Life Partners: The Lone Gunmen seem to do everything together, including living together.
- Hollywood Spelling No one ever asks Yves Adele Harlow just how that's spelled. The Gunmen discovered it was an alias, because it's an anagram of Lee Harvey Oswald. Her name was never spelled out until they made the connection, despite there being at least four different ways to spell the names involved. For one thing, 'Yves' is usually a men's name, and is pronounced exactly like the women's name 'Eve'.
- Iron Butt Monkey: Jimmy takes a whole lotta crap, both from the writers and the other characters. He never complains.
- Jail Bake: Yves smuggles Jimmy an earpiece in prison inside a bag of Cheetos.
- Information Wants to Be Free: Inverted in the episode "Like Water for Octane". The Gunmen are trying to find an experimental prototype water-powered car before an agent of an oil company, who presumably intends to destroy it. It turns out that the agent wants to see it mass-manufactured, and its original creator hid it away because he realized that freedom from oil would ultimately mean more cars and more consumption--his "miracle" would accelerate corporate devastation of the environment rather than stop it.
- However, in every other case it's played straight and Up to Eleven. They are hackers and underground journalists who seek to expose "mundane" conspiracies and wrongdoings.
- Latex Perfection
- Lighter and Softer: Than The X-Files and Millennium
- "Mission Impossible" Cable Drop
- Mistaken for Gay: Tends to be a Running Gag.
- Myth Arc
- Prison Episode: "Maximum Byers," where Byers and Jimmy go undercover as prisoners for a case. The Fridge Logic of this approach was acknowledged In-Universe, as Eve asks why they didn't just dress up as prison guards.
Langley: (sheepishly) That's not how they did it on The A-Team.
- Risky Business Dance: In "Eine Kleine Frohike".
- Running Gag: The guys get Mistaken for Gay often. And when people aren't actually mistaking Langly for a girl, they're pretending to as a joke.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: Byers.
- Speculative Fiction Series
- Themed Aliases: Yves Adele Harlow's assumed name is an anagram of Lee Harvey Oswald, as are most of her one time only aliases.
- Three Plus Two: Byers, Frohike, and Langly, plus Jimmy and Yves.
- The Smurfette Principle
- Wild Card: Yves.
- Your Little Dismissive Diminutive: While talking to Jimmy, one character refers to the Gunmen as "your little mongoloid Girl Scout troop."