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.