Alternative Season 8 is a retelling of the episodes aired during the eighth season of The X-Files, utilizing the same starting point (the 7th-season finale, "Requiem") and the same essential story premises. We do this in hopes of demonstrating that, given the same basic storylines, there was a better way this season could have been handled, a higher road the producers could have taken. Departures from characterization will be rectified, needless and senseless continuity errors will be fixed, and bad storytelling and plot devices will be eliminated.
These are not "novelizations" of the episodes, as such, nor are they screenplays. They are written in the third person, present tense, but with a minimum of narration. This eliminates the more distracting elements of reading a screenplay, while still focusing on the dialogue and actions. Everyone reading these episodes is aware of show, the actors, and how what happens would have been portrayed. Beyond the essential elements of action and dialogue, we leave the fans to supply the rest--the spirit and emotion of the story--with their imaginations and preexisting knowledge of the characters and situations of "The X-Files."
Some text from aired eighth season episodes will be used directly, and some will be discarded or edited to suit the spirit of Alternative Season 8. The idea is not to claim that the eighth season of "The X-Files" never happened, but to demonstrate that it could have happened better.
We do this because we love the show, and we are distressed by the direction it has taken. Because we want to renew our faith in these characters who have become a part of ourselves. Because we want to make the show better, to recreate the show we loved once again.
The AS8 writers also provided a complete zip file of .txt versions which I'll attach as a download option with this volume. There's also a link to their website in the download area. I'm getting intermittent 404 errors so if it disappears you can view it via archive.org.
It's important to note that in addition to rewriting the episodes, the authors have re-ordered them to have the season flow better, so episodes may not be where you expect them to be. There are 22 episodes in the Alternative Season 8, which I've split into 4 volumes. The first contains:
Introduction: About VS8
Within by Kristel St Johns
Without by Kristel St Johns
The Gift by ga
Invocation by Jo
Medusa by Samantha Wilkinson
Alternat(iv)e Season 8 was arguably the best thing to come out of Season 8. These talented authors turned a season which was rather problematic into a much more palatable one, which unfortunately for TenThirteen really highlights just how poor the efforts by CC et al were. This is my replacement canon for season 8. Actually I have very little acceptance of any seasons after season 7 so it's quite a compliment to these authors that I'm willing to begrudgingly consider that it may have happened 😀
I can't remember whether they treated Mulder's ridiculous brain disease as a real thing or a hoax (or just ignored it), but I do have AS8x03 "The Gift" marked as a fic I really enjoyed, so I'm confident they fixed it somehow.
Kimberly made all the dustjackets for the series (except the consolidated volumes - please don't blame her for those!). Original covers are included in the downloaded volumes and on the webpage.