Asta 2

Firefly

After having spent a large part of the weekend watching Firefly, I'm left a bit saddened by the realization of what we have been deprived of. Maybe it wouldn't have run for seven seasons, but I'm overwhelmed contemplating how many stories there were left to tell.

Firefly is one of the few programs where I have liked and cared about *all* the characters. Sure, my shippy heart wants to know when and how Inara and Mal and Simon and Kahlie hook up and now I never will. But, what also struck me (which I wasn't afforded the opportunity to catch before) was the relationship between Jayne and Book. Or the fact that River, though clearly still a very troubled girl, was improving little by little.

I have some more thoughts that may be spoilery if you haven't seen all the episodes yet, so they are

To be honest, I don't think FOX showing episodes out of order did the show a major disservice. The exception being scrapping the original pilot in lieu of a new one. I fail to see how 'Serenity' wasn't action packed or interesting enough to be the premiere of the show and it did set up the characters and premise much better.

It was apparent early on the Joss was going to do as he did on his other shows and bring characters back. I like the idea, but the actress who played 'Mrs Reynolds' annoys me to no end. And Jubile Early (who we *know* somehow would have survived floating through space) was one of the most disturbing villians to ever appear on a Joss produced show. Vampires aren't cary because they aren't real. Bounty hunters calmly discussing raping and torture? That scares the Hell out of me. It makes me sick just thinking about it.

It was obvious from the subtle and not-so-subtle hints that Book was more than a Shepard. But what was his past and how did it tie to the Alliance? Did Jubile Early's "He's no Shepard" mean he recognized him? Hmmm, what if he had worked with the Alliance during the war? How would Mal have reacted to that revelation?

And what of the rather odd ball friendship he was forming with Jayne? As big an ass as Jayne could be he did seem to have respect for Book. Maybe it was the fact Book knew a lot about breaking the law. ;) For Book's part, maybe he knew all too well where Jayne was coming from. I guess my observations began coming together in 'The Message' when Jayne apologizes if he interupted Book while preying over Tracey's body. I wonder if even Mal would have even been that considerate?

Speaking of 'The Message', it's perhaps one of the best episodes and it would have been a shame to have never have seen it. Jonathon Woodward showed yet another facet to his abilities and why Joss keeps hiring him. :) Neither Webb nor Knox could bring a tear to my eye like Tracey did.

'Heart of Gold' was a so-so episode with a few great moments. We see Joss do as he's done before and begin to reference previous episodes when Mal waits to see if he passes out after kissing Mandy(?). :) And we see hints of what may yet come - we learn that Wash and Zoey have discussed the possibility of children. Meanwhile, Mal and Inara are so fearful of complications they fail to realize excatly how much they are complicating their lives by failing to reveal their feelings.

'Trash' was a funny episode with a nice little plot twist at the end, yet all I keep thinking about is "Captain Tightpants without his pants!". Joss really does enjoy the gratuitous nudity, doesn't he? ;-)

Oh, and there was one moment I wish I hadn't seen. Cut from 'Our Mrs Reynolds' was a scene where River informs Simon why they should be married. :( OK, River is psychologically damaged, but I think she's still smart enough to know the incestuous nature of marrying your brother. It was cut for time from the ep (thankfully), but I found it disturbing rather than funny.

I might have some more observations later after I listen to the commentaries. I'm fascinated to know if there are any hints as to what might have been.
  • Current Mood: sad sad
Sigh. I still haven't had time to watch mine yet, but I still have two more days. I spent the better part of the afternoon trying to figure out how to renew my NortonAntivirus and I still don't have it right, so I have to call tomorrow.

I can't wait to see The Message!
Sorry to hear you are still having computer problems. That's one of the reasons I'm scared to get a new one. Least I know what crap I have to deal with now. :p

You can definitely get through Firefly in two days, one if you have about an eleven hour block of time. :) And it helps to pick up on the nuances watching them back-to-back-to-back.

I hear you - the computer you know is better than the computer you don't know ;) But someday I'm going to take a chance - I want a flat screen monitor, dammit!

I think I can get maybe five hours one day and five or six the next - I must remember I have to share with big sis so she can watch her prezzies too :)
I only read your post up to the part where you said there may be some spoilers. I still haven't watched disk 4.

But I agreed with everything you said. I honestly think that given a few years, and Joss' stewardship, this had the ingredients to be as good as Buffy. Frankly, these eps are more assured than BtVS S1, imo.

Now the dumb question part. Where are the commentaries? My disks just offer me options like 'play episode' 'language' 'scene selection' 'home.' What am I doing wrong?
No problem! When I first got the DVDs, I almost had a panic attack because I thought I got a default set. ;) Luckily, I calmed down enough to hunt through all the menus.
I really have nothing deep to say other than "Awwww, look at the cute doggie". Sorry, I'm a sucker for dogs. :)
Thanks! My doggie would be happy to know that there's yet another person in the world who thinks he's gorgeous. Egotistical little snot. ;)
Hmmm, looking at replies I'm sensing a pattern that I'm the only one who has watched disc 4! :p

I honestly think that given a few years, and Joss' stewardship, this had the ingredients to be as good as Buffy. Frankly, these eps are more assured than BtVS S1, imo.

I know this is blasphemy, but I'm not so sure it couldn't have been better. After only fourteen episodes the characters already seemed far more complex.

And I wholeheartedly agree that Firefly is far more assured than Buffy was in the beginning. Unlike other writers who get themselves into a rut or try to exist on former glory, you see that Joss learned and grew as a writer/director from his experiences on Buffy and Angel. Whereas Buffy may have had a couple of different directions to go in each season, I think Firefly had a good half dozen arcs it could have followed.



No real comment
I didn't read your whole post in order to stay spoiler-free but I'm glad a kind soul provided bittorrent files for Firefly, even for the DVD extras. I'm not sure if those files include the audio commentaries (would this even be possible, technically?) but even without them it seems that I have something to really look forward to.
Re: No real comment
Even without audio commentaries, you really have something to look forward to. I can't wait until you get a chance to see the episodes. I'll be looking forward to your opinions. :)
I skimmed over your post because I haven't watched the last DVD yet and I don't want to be spoiled, but I completely agree about how disappointing it is that we'll never be able to see the way the relationships on Firefly would have progressed (unless, of course, Joss can get the movie off the ground). I spent all day Friday watching episodes, and it made me alternately happy because the episodes were so good and bitter that FOX never gave it the chance it deserved.
I spent all day Friday watching episodes, and it made me alternately happy because the episodes were so good and bitter that FOX never gave it the chance it deserved.

ITA. I was so enthralled at what I was watching (with special attention paid to the unaired episodes of course) and then realizing when I came to the last episode it was the last episode. That there wouldn't be another box set of episodes to look forward to even though I desperately want to know what happens next. :( I wonder if the DVD's are successful, FOX will admit how badly they screwed up?
I hope I'm not spamming your LJ or anything, but I decided to break the cycle and be the person that has watched the fourth disk!

First of all, I didn't see Firefly at all until the DVDs came out. Before that, I didn't know much about the show except that it took place on a spaceship, and it was the show where Jasmine and Caleb came from. Now I am filled with the deep depression and fiery anger that comes along with falling in love with a television show that's already been canceled.

my shippy heart wants to know when and how Inara and Mal and Simon and Kahlie hook up

I think Kaylee and Simon would have eventually gotten together, but it would take a while to happen they wouldn't have lasted very long. Simon has a long way to go before he calms the hell down. If the show would have gone on longer, Simon would have come to realize that he loves Serenity just as much as the rest of the crew. And it would take until then for Simon to fall in love with Kaylee, since Kaylee identifies herself so strongly with the ship and the life that comes along with.

With Inara and Mal, their relationship is so intense and nonexistent at the same time that it's hard to imagine them actually hooking up. They're madly in love with each other, know that the other person feels the same way, but they have an unspoken agreement to never act on it. I think it would take a very serious and mutual near-death experience for them to move forward. And that means a very serious incident as a catalyst, because near-death experiences are so common with them.

River, though clearly still a very troubled girl, was improving little by little.

Recently, as in last week, Joss was at a convention and compared River to Fred. Geniuses that had been so broken that they went insane, and were on the same path to recovery. He said that River could never end up as healed as Fred, but I do see the similarities. Actually, once you throw in Dru, I'm pretty convinced that Joss must have a brunette crazy lady kink.

the actress who played 'Mrs Reynolds' annoys me to no end

Just a bit of trivia. The actress who played Saffron/Bridget/Yolanda played the bar wench in one of the flashback scenes in the AtS episode The Prodigal. I think it's kind of fun to see all of these recycled actors in their various incarnations.

It was obvious from the subtle and not-so-subtle hints that Book was more than a Shepard. But what was his past and how did it tie to the Alliance?

That has been bugging me and will continue to bug me for all time if the movie never gets made. He is so not really a preacher. On the other hand, I really do think his beliefs are legit. He really is a religious man, but there's so much more to his story. There's no bloody way that guy spent most of his life at an abbey like he claims.

Speaking of 'The Message', it's perhaps one of the best episodes and it would have been a shame to have never have seen it. Jonathon Woodward showed yet another facet to his abilities and why Joss keeps hiring him. :) Neither Webb nor Knox could bring a tear to my eye like Tracey did.

Although I liked Jonathan best as Holden, that was a really great episode. I loved how it was structured. How Tracey's message was at first a big lie, and how it actually became the truth by the end.

I agree with you about the deleted scene from Our Mrs. Reynolds. That is pretty gross, especially the pregnant thing. Anything even remotely incestuous freaks me out. I have an older brother, and.... ew. Just ew.

By the way, what are your thoughts on Out of Gas? That's my personal favorite.
I hope I'm not spamming your LJ or anything, but I decided to break the cycle and be the person that has watched the fourth disk!

Spam away and Thank You!

Now I am filled with the deep depression and fiery anger that comes along with falling in love with a television show that's already been canceled.

Ain't that the truth. It's so disheartening to see how good the show already was and how great it could have been and to know that it's already over. I can only hope that that movie gets made.

They're madly in love with each other, know that the other person feels the same way, but they have an unspoken agreement to never act on it.

I'm not sure I agree with their reasoning for not being together, but they at least have reasons. Inara mentions (to Kaylee?) that, in her line of work, dating is complicated. Not to mention, in their society, Mal would be considered far beneath her making matters worse. And then in Mal's profession, any type of relationship would be complicated - even detrimental. It's interesting that we find out as Wash and Mal are being tortured that Mal "ordered" Zoey not to marry Wash. I think this was more than getting Wash's ire up, I think it was the truth. We witnessed Wash having great difficulty putting the ship and crew ahead of his wife when she was badly injured. Mal, as the captain, doesn't want to subject himself to that predicament.

There's no bloody way that guy spent most of his life at an abbey like he claims.

That's why I'd like to know how long Book was at the abbey/monestary. Could it have been since the war? Why was he drawn to the ship Serenity? I think it would have been fascinating to find out he worked with the Alliance during the war, witnessed the carnage at Serentiy, and withdrew from life after that to contemplate what he had partaken in and to make amends. It just seems like something that twisted bastard Joss would do to Mal. :p

I loved how it was structured. How Tracey's message was at first a big lie, and how it actually became the truth by the end.

Oh, yeah, that was one of my favorite parts too. And how if he had just trusted Mal, he would have survived the mess. :(

By the way, what are your thoughts on Out of Gas? That's my personal favorite.

I have yet to pick out a favorite, but that would definitely be a contender. I love the structure of the episode and I'm a sucker for 'How We Met' stories. Kaylee was a more 'outgoing' girl than I had thought. Zoey's response to first meeting Wash - "I don't like him" - is priceless (ss is that horrific mustache). :) And they got Jayne with a promise of his own room? Hee! It's a masterful blend of the comedic (the flashbacks) and dramatic
(watching Mal struggle to save the ship and survive).
Hi, I have been lurking your LJ and decided to comment.

I haven't bough the DVD set and Firefly was my favorite show of 2002. I even got hold of the unaired episodes months before the DVD set came out (and I even saw the unaired version of Serenity which doesn't have the battle scene at the beginning).

Another DVD set I need to buy is the upcoming box set of MI-5 Vol. 1 (MI-5 aka SPOOKS) is my favorite show of 2003 (and MI-5 kicks Alias and 24's butt any day despite how much I like Alias and 24).
Oh, the DVD's have four deleted scenes including the original opening of 'Serenity'. I have to say it was probably a wiser choice opening with the battle sequence. Starting a series off with your leads surrounded by corpses is a wee bit depressing. Though, because of the 'new' opening there was a conversation between Book and Zoey they had to cut that I quite liked (it would have been redundant) in which Zoey describes the horrors they endured and why Mal named the ship Serenity.

(and MI-5 kicks Alias and 24's butt any day despite how much I like Alias and 24).

Well, I may have to argue about the Alias butt-kicking ;), but I haven't been overwhelmed by 24 this year. I have seen episodes of MI-5, it's a good show, yet I haven't become drawn into as I have others.

Thanks for de-lurking by the way. :)
I love MI-5 because most (or all) of the plots are real threats that can happen in the world. MI-5 grips me where Alias is just the escapist spy show (with some reality mixed in). I loved the MI-5 episode that guest starred Anthony Stewart Head (yep, he's brillant). Then the episode where they went through a simulation of what happens when a dirty bomb goes off in London is very tense stuff. MI-5 never retreats or cops out. I'm waiting for season 3 (at least 8 months away).
We also watched our Firefly DVDs over the weekend. There is a new mantra in our house now, too. After each exquisite episode we would say in unison, "Stupid FOX." After each featurette where we got to see a bit more of the beauty and craft behind the eps we would say, "Stupid FOX." Every once in a while I'd throw in a "Stupid other networks for not picking it up" for good measure. It really is heartbreaking that it had such a short life.
I like your mantra. ;-) At least we have the DVD's. Even just a few years ago it would have been unheard of to release a show that didn't even last a season to DVD.

And I have to wonder about the 'logic' at FOX. They didn't see the show successful (meaning profitable) enough to keep on the air, yet they they are convinced they'll make money off the DVD's?
I'm not sure how expensive (or not) it is to produce DVDs, but I'm betting that it really wasn't much of a gamble for them. I'm willing to bet that the per unit cost is much, much lower than the retail price so no risk for losing money.

Stupid FOX. 8^(
Hey! I agree with a lot of what you said here. Especially the bit about Early being disturbing. In BtVS I found both Warren and Caleb to be two of the scariest villains to grace the show because there really *are* people like that out there. Well...okay, not necissarily people who can absorb power from the First Evil and gain super strength like Caleb did, but people...serial killers and the like...who do think and act like he did. And Early is like that, too. When he was talking to Kaylee? *shudder*

I also agree with you about the deleted scene from "Our Mrs. Reynolds." I do admit to finding it amusing, not because of River but because of Simon's reactions (because that actor is so good at being perplexed) and the conversation he had with Mal...but mostly I felt like...why the hell would River act like that? In all the other episodes there's always a reason behind the things she does...they're not always apparent right away, but they're not mindless or stupid actions. And more than anything else, she's like a super-genius, and a super-genius (even a psychologically damaged super-genius) knows that incest is a bad thing. The only time we see her acting even remotely close to that is probably her reaction to Book's hair in Jaynestown, which was sort of childlike, I guess. But, really, the hair *was*...ah...surprising. Even Zoe had a "WTF?" kind of reaction to it. ;) So, yeah, I felt that deleted scene was OOC for her, and I'm glad it wasn't in the final product. I think (I hope) it wasn't meant to be taken all that seriously, and was probably just an instance of Joss using her for comic purposes...but still. It seemed off.

Oh! And I thought the episode "Serenity" was a great pilot, too. It was action packed and fun to watch, and it drew me into the stories of the characters much better than "The Train Job" did when I first watched it last year.

I'll read the other links you gave me after I've heard all the commentaries. And I think I'm going to add you to my friends list. Because you have interesting thoughts on things. :)
In BtVS I found both Warren and Caleb to be two of the scariest villains to grace the show because there really *are* people like that out there....And Early is like that, too. When he was talking to Kaylee? *shudder*

ITA. With the exception of possbily Angelus (and that was because of the mental torture he inflicted on Buffy and the others), the supernatural villians on Buffy never really scared me or affected me in any way. We know, for a fact, those kinds of beings aren't really out there. But Warren, Caleb, and Early? They are out there. We read about them everyday. And one of my worst fears I have is being in Kaylee's situation. When you can relate *then* it becomes scary. Actually, I think Early may have been Joss' most terrifying creation. Until he starts to speak you really don't know what kind of vile human being he is.

In all the other episodes there's always a reason behind the things she does...they're not always apparent right away, but they're not mindless or stupid actions. And more than anything else, she's like a super-genius, and a super-genius (even a psychologically damaged super-genius) knows that incest is a bad thing.

Exactly. I just could not wrap my mind around what the thinking was behind that scene. I know Joss & Co. will throw stuff in from time to time just because it seems funny. But, incest? Not funny.

And you are correct in stating that there is always a twisted sort of logic to River's ramblings. She's intelligent (and lucid) enough to know the difference between romantic love and sibling love. Now, I can understand her seeing Wash and Zoey and then Mal and the Mrs. ;) and see it's 'logical' that men and women need to pair up. Had they played out this same scene with her informing Jayne they need to get married - now *that* would have been funny.

And I think I'm going to add you to my friends list. Because you have interesting thoughts on things.

Thanks. :) I shall friend you back as well. I just hate to do it right after taking icons because I don't want the person to think that's the only reason I'm friending them. But, I like your analysis as well as your art. :)
With the exception of possbily Angelus (and that was because of the mental torture he inflicted on Buffy and the others)

Oh, yeah. Angelus was scary, too...not because he was a vampire, but because of his sociopathic behavior, which is also something that can be found in the real world. And there are guys who are scary and stalk and terrorize their ex-girlfriends like he did with Buffy. And when someone you used to trust is suddenly something you have to fear...that's scary.

Now, I can understand her seeing Wash and Zoey and then Mal and the Mrs. ;) and see it's 'logical' that men and women need to pair up.

Yes, that makes sense. Especially since she sometimes seems to have rather childlike reactions to things. Her reaction to Book's hair, as I stated before, and in Safe, when she thinks Simon's playiing hide and seek with her, and when she finds him she says playfully, "found you!" And that kind of "men and women should be paired" logic when she sees the married couples is kind of a little girl type thing, I think.

Had they played out this same scene with her informing Jayne they need to get married - now *that* would have been funny.

Yes! That would have been great. I would have liked to see that. Can you imagine Jayne's reaction? Hee!

I shall friend you back as well. I just hate to do it right after taking icons because I don't want the person to think that's the only reason I'm friending them. But, I like your analysis as well as your art.

Spiffy! Thanks! I can understand not liking to friend someone after taking icons, since I've felt the same way. And I admit, sometimes I'm not sure if someone has added me for icons or because they want to read my journal. I've also met a lot of cool people through the icon communities (like you!), though, so it's usually worth it. :)
Excellent points about Angelus. Really, he seemed a sociopath first and a vampire second. It also helps to explain how Spike was far less scary and far more loving even without his soul while Angelus shows not a shred of humanity.

I'm a little confused as to when River went away from her family. It seems to me that her child-like behavior is a result of one of two things. That she ceased to grow emotionally once she was at the Academy. Maybe, in her time there, the only way she found some semblence of peace and safety was to revert back to her younger self and the time spent with her beloved brother. I think back to the scenes with Kaylee in particular. Kaylee chasing River around the ship trying to get her apple back. Or the two playing jacks at the end of 'Objects in Space'. Would anyone older than the age of nine find this the height of entertainment? And is this someone trying to get a feel for the childhood she lost?

I've also met a lot of cool people through the icon communities (like you!), though, so it's usually worth it. :)

Awwww, that's very sweet of you to say. And I've really enjoyed our discussions. You've definitely given me more to think about. :)