When it comes to American television, network censors often rule on certain plot points to ensure that the American public isn’t traumatized by anything that might be distasteful.
Although these standards have been relaxed over the years (you can now see toilets on TV!) “, but some episodes were omitted by censors but were banned soon after airing.
For the most part, The X-Files handled offensive and controversial content rather well. Still, there is one episode that crossed the line… well, several lines, and as a result, FOX banned it. The episode “Home” originally aired on October 11, 1996, but wasn’t seen on the channel after that.
In “Home,” the series strayed from its typical format by using people as the antagonists. There was nothing supernatural about the horror that unfolded on the screen. The episode revolves around a family of inbred and deformed people who catch the attention of the FBI after a deformed baby is found buried in a sandlot.
The brothers of the Peacock family end up murdering the Sheriff and his wife, but that’s not the worst of it. Mulder and Scully find the “matriarch” of the family hidden under a bed with all of her limbs removed. The boys had been raping her for years.
The disturbing content earned the episode the first TV-MA rating. FOX pulled the episode after it aired, but it didn’t stay buried. While FOX was done with it, FX showed the episode in an X-Files marathon the following year. It has since become one of the most-watched episodes of the series (largely due to the intrigue the ban built).