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saturn5 August 4 2010 04:58 PM

Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Ok, so I caved. Firefly never grabbed me the way Joss' other shows did but October is just too long to wait for season 2 of Dollhouse on DVD. Please note I haven't seen the entire series yet so please avoid spoilers for me.
SERENITY

The good;
The 'treasure' mislead is very clever indeed as is the mole, we think it's Simon then Book. Love Kaylee's parasol. The Mal/Jayne face off at dinner is powerful as is Mal telling Jayne to shut up on Persephone but then agreeing he's actually right. It's a small gesture but love it when Simon is about to give River an injection and she sticks her tongue out.

The bad;
The opening battle scenes are too dark, I can barely work out what's going on. They appear to operate on Kaylee yet keep her clothes on (like Buffy at the end of season 6). Passing the Reaver ship is a tense moment but stupid when you think about the physics as Joss admits on the commentary. Shouldn't Jayne bring his own rifle to the gunfight, what if there were no snipers? What if they're rifles were inaccurate/faulty and how does he use a weapon not zeroed for him? The Reavers just letting the Serenity go then arbitarily coming back for it later with no adequate expectation is just stupid and lazy writing or am I trying to find logic in the actions of madmen? (The Reavers, not the writers). Can't they just take the markings off the food? Why does Mal peg the guy in the hat for the best shot when he's got an ancient Colt repeater rifle? How come Mal shoots Dobson in the head yet he doesn't bleed as he and Jayane chuck him out the door?

Best line;
Mal; "How's business?"
Inarra; "None of yours"
also like;
Zoe; "She shot you"
Mal; "Yeah, she did a little bit"
plus a new spin on the old Whedon fallback "Standing right here!"

Packing heat; whilst Buffy was an avowedly anti-gun series Joss seems to have changed his mind from season 4 of Angel onwards. Maybe he got robbed? AI and Dollhouse often use guns (Echo, demonstrating her familiarity with a pistol "4 brothers, none Democrats"). Firefly takes that to a new level and is a show Frank Castle would almost dig;
Mal and Jayne pack Colt revolver style pistols, Zoe uses a cut-off Winchester carbine. They both use H&K G36's in the war and Mal uses a .50cal Chinise anti-aircraft machine gun to down the skiff. Dobson uses an Astra pistol and a couple of different models of Sig, one of which Simon keeps. Anyone tell me the sniper rifle Jayne uses?

Kinky dinky;
Naked Summer Glau, a cause for joy as anyone who ever watched The Sarah Connor Chronicles knows ("Put'em back in the holster"). Mal tells Kaylee he's considering tying her up, gagging her and throwing her into the hold. She then kisses him and says she loves him. Much like Willow maybe there's a lot of kink beneath that sweet and innocent exterior? "Force is ok" Wash likes to watch Zoe bathe, Inarra also does it unabashedly in front of Book, causing him to gawp. Kaylee certainly knows how to eat a strawberry, maybe Inarra taught her how? Zoe says the Reavers will "Rape us to death" if they are boarded.
.
Notches on the Serenity bedpost;
Inarra;1-a paying customer who wishes to make her his kept woman
Wash; 1-the missus
Zoe; 1-the hubby

Capt subtext;
Is it just me or does the Dortmunder resemble the World Trade Centre? The might of 'imperialism' cruising for a fall? I always figured all spaceships were sleek to enable them to perform at least some atmospheric flight but maybe the Dortmunder is like a supertanker, so vast that it never sees port. Some nice kinship between Inarra and Kaylee, they seem tight, Inarra describing her as 'very dear'. Kaylee thinks River is a 'real beauty' and calls her 'sweetie'. Some have argued for an incestuous subtext between Simon and River in the same way people saw it between Spike/his mum, Buffy/Dawn/Joyce, Connor/Cordelia. You can almost see why they'd think that, Simon hugging naked River and the little stroking gesture when he holds her hand but as with the other examples I'm not convinced, I just think they're a very devoted brother and sister (they're all each other have in the world).
When Book comments that the Serenity "Doesn't look like much" Kaylee replies that "She'll fool you", are they flirting? Joss comments she's 'Open to everyone'.
Mal thinks he's better than Badger and Badger knows it and resents it. Of course Mal also thinks Simon is a better than him 'rich boy' and he resents that, possibly because Simon epitomises the Alliance.

How'd they get away with that?
'Good dogs', funny but hoooooooo! Also Mal shooting the horse! Mal fooling Simon about Kaylee dying is nasty as hell. Zoe, Jayne and Mal open fire on Patience and her gang first with Zoe also shooting the guy in the back as he tries to flee, Jayne threatening Dobson with knife torture and Mal causually gunning him down when the Reavers arrive.

Total Serenity crew; 7(8?)
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, Inarra. Mal invites Simon to join and I guess River comes with him? Book not really part of the team yet.

Subverting the Hollywood cliche;
We see Mal go to the bathroom on a spaceship, something only Babylon 5 has shown before. Simon's dramatic, slow motion run to the sick bay (much like Buffy in Becoming) only to find his patitent alive and well. The crew then laugh uproariously at him. The crew doesn't kill the Reavers but are happy enough to simply get away with their lives.

Whedon cliches; (see I spelt it right!);
Devoted siblings, haunted charismatic leading man. Teenage girls with superpowers. Hookers. Arguments where everyone talks over one another. Naked girls in boxes (like Darla in Angel)
Bondage;
The Fed tied up.
Knocked out;
Book; 1
Simon; 1
Kayleigh; 1
Women good/men bad;
Mal's jealous attitude towards Inarra is very nasty, you can see why Joss cast Nathan Fillon as the misogynistic Caleb in the last season of Buffy. Inarra's trick commenting about her speeding up the clock was probably intended as a joke but he instantly realises it was a huge mistake, inadvertently insulting her.

Kills;
Mal; 7-presuming the skiff is manned Mal kills at least 3 Alliance soldiers, 2 of Patience's thugs, Dobson and Patience's horse. The way Mal and Jayne dump the body is gruesomely callous but when the Reavers are coming I guess you don't hang about.
Zoe; 2-2 off Patience's men, one of whom she shoots in the back.
Jayne; 2-the same
Happy high-class hookers in Space (the title the porn industry wished they'd thought of!);
Prostitution a recurring theme in the Whedonverse, here the nature of ladies (and gentlemen) of the night and their work is explored.
Ironically Inarra the high class hooker is considered the one who makes the honest living in the crew, some planet's not even letting a ship dock unless they have companion onboard. Book comes across less refined hookers plying their trade at Eavesdown spacedocks. Mal seems to take perverse delight in teasing Inarra by describing her as a 'whore'. She teases him back saying she gave Simon '... a free thrust'. Mal thinks River is a sex slave Simon is smuggling to the frontier.
Know the face?
Whedon alumni- Joss likes to reuse the same actors in his series, let's count up their appearances (let me know if I miss any)
Nathan Fillon-3; Firefly, Caleb in S7 of Buffy and Dr Horrible
Gina Torres-2; Firefly and Jasmine in S4 of Angel
Alan Tudyk-2; Firefly and the villainous/heroic(?) Alpha in Dollhouse (haven't seen season 2 so don't spoil it for me)
Adam Baldwin-2; Firefly and Marcus Hamilton in S5 of Angel
Summer Glau-3; Firefly, Dollhouse and the prima ballerina in the LEGENDARY S4 Angel ep 'Waiting in the wings'.
Carlos Jacott-3; The Fed in Firefly, Ken in the 'Anne' ep of Buffy and Richard Straley in 'The Bachelor Party' ep of Angel.
Andy Umberger;3-the captain of the Dortmunder in Firefly, D'Hoffryn in Buffy, the psychic surgeon in the Angel ep 'I fall to pieces'.
Mark Shepherd;2-Badger in Firefly and later turns up as one of Ballard's FBI colleagues in Dollhouse. Also a BSG alumni.
Alliance good or bad?;
It says much for the skill of Joss' writing that he could have made the Serenity crew the out and out good guys and the Alliance all bad. But throughout the series we see that actually the order and civilizing influence of the Alliance is very good news for a great many people. Not everyone supports Mal and his crew of outlaws who like the galaxy wild and untamed, resenting that it's "getting awfully crowded in my sky" (one man's freedom another man's anarchy?). Inarra says it best when she declares that Mal likes being 'lost in the woods' whilst Mal's view is that 'goverments are for getting in a man's way'. At the end when they've escaped Mal declares them 'Out of the woods'.
In many ways they're like the Roundheads vs the Cavaliers in the War of the Three Kingdoms (modern historians shy away from the term 'English civil war' as it also involved Ireland and Scotland and Britain didn't exist yet), the Confedracy vs Union in the US Civil War and the Republicans vs Nationalists in Spain, one side with the romance and glamour and one side with the might and right. As the end of the battle of Serenity shows romance and glamour are no match for unity of purpose and an overwhelming military-industrial complex. Note the Alliance soldiers wear Nazi stormtrooper style coal-scuttle helmets.
Much like Dollhouse or Angel Investigations taking over WR&H in the final season here we have shades of grey. I wonder if Joss ever watched the British sci-fi series Blake's 7 when he lived in the UK? It also has a small band of rebels in a spaceship pursued by an all powerful and authoritarian Terran Federation. Here the Alliance cruiser leaves the Serenity alone in order to rescue the survivors from their fake distress call, a low trick in anyone's book. Badger appears to be dealing in slaves which you would imagine wouldn't happen in Alliance territory (US Civil War again?). The Fed doesn't kill Book or Kaylee even though he has the opportunity and motive too, he even apologises for accidentally shooting her and says he doesn't want to hurt anyone. He seems a good enough guy just doing what he considers a perfectly reasonable job. His argument to Simon about coming back to the Alliance almost seems to persuade him. Even Shepherd is unsure who is right or wrong.

Fanfic;
Plenty of stuff showing Zoe and Mal shacking up together during the war before she met Wash

Missing scenes;.

Western cliches;
If you're old enough you surely remember the wonderful documentary series 'The American Civil War', the emotive Serenity music strongly resembles it. Mal speaks of the Alliance 'waltzing through serenity valley' much in the same way Sherman went 'marching through Georgia'. Shooting the horse is very Magnificent 7 whilst Zoe's cut down carbine is very Steve McQueen.
Firefly speak;
Gorram=goddam.
Weak tea=not good
Back birth=idiot
Sticky=corrosive acid
Skiff=Alliance attack craft
Humped=screwed
Companion=high class courtesan
Shiny=good
Shot; Zoe shot but her body armour takes the hit
Mal; 2-shot by Patience offscreen and onscreen.
Kaylee;1-shot by Dobson
Crew injured;
Simon kicked around by everyone, Book bludgeoned.

Reminds me off;
Do we need to say 'Millenium Falcon', right down to it's gunslinging captain? (does this mean Jayne is Chewie?)
The skiff crashing is very reminiscent of the dropship impacting in Aliens. Speaking of which the whole Firefly idea is very similar to what Joss created in Alien 4 for The Betty, an outdated ship full of outlaws with a glamorous female second in command, River and Jayne strongly resembling Winonna Ryder's and Ron Pearlman's characters. Ripley is a female Mal at the end, having regained her crew, her ship, her little girl and her humanity and finally made it back to Earth (Alien 4 is not a great film but at least rescues the series after the travesty of Alien3, the worst sequal of all time). Interestingly the Firefly set is built upon the one they used for filming Alien 4 and Joss comments that the flightdeck of the ship was modelled on that of the Nostromo from Alien.
Wash is very Xander with his battling dinosaurs whilst Kaylee is very Willow/Fred, Joss even describes her as having the Alysson Hannigan quality. Joss describes Jayne as 'the Cordelia' of the group in that he says out loud what everyone is thinking (sorry Adam, I think Charisma is a LOT prettier)
The crybaby trick is reminiscent of Sheriden's ruse during the battle of the line in Babylon 5. The ship 'Brutus' at the spacedocks remind anyone else of Colonial One from BSG? Simon remind anyone else of Christian Bale? Simon/River very Buffy/Dawn and 'The Gift' is even mentioned. The Zoe/Mal/Wash relationship somewhat similar to Willow, Xander and Oz/Tara, great asexual love between the first 2 causing a little resentment and tension with the third, romantic partner. The Alliance rather resemble the Initiative from season 4 Buffy. The scene where we think Kayleigh has died is reminiscent of Cordy in 'Lovers Walk'. 'Crazy Ivan' is a term used in 'The Hunt for Red October' (when a Soviet sub circles around to check if it's being followed). Simon says to River 'You're a dummy' just as Willow says to Tara at the end of the S5 Buffy ep 'Family'. Badger checking the slave's teeth may have been taken from Spartacus.

Questions and observations;
Note Mal kisses his cross before taking on the skiff. Is that why he shows hostility to Book later over grace, he's lost his faith? Note even Jayne does say grace. Mal seems to resent Simon as a 'rich kid', he's a very working class hero. Simon tells Mal to dope Kaylee which you shouldn't do with a stomach wound but maybe their drugs are more advanced? Who are the underground movement Simon claims helped him free River? Did Jayne free the Fed? The Serenity reminds me not so much of a bug as off a goose. I always thought at the end Wash was giving some sort of weird futuristic thumbs up, hilarious to think he's actually faking steering the ship and in the widescreen we see there's no control there. Mal tries to put his past behind him but still can't give up his resentment against the Alliance, won't beg to work for them. He also resents Inarra, Book and pretty much everyone. In the future they still use platinum for money.
Marks out of 10; 7/10, interesting but not brilliant from the beginning by any means

Mal August 4 2010 06:19 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
i've enjoyed your Angel reviews, and even though firefly is my very favorite show ever, i'm sorry to say that i won't be following this thread, for the following reasons:


Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Naked Summer Glau, a cause for joy as anyone who ever watched The Sarah Connor Chronicles knows ("Put'em back in the holster").

i watched and very much enjoyed TSCC, but i must be missing something here. river is a scared little girl, definitely not Darla in a Box.

Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Mal tells Kaylee he's considering tying her up, gagging her and throwing her into the hold. She then kisses him and says she loves him. Much like Willow maybe there's a lot of kink beneath that sweet and innocent exterior?

kaylee and willow (from what i've seen of her in Angel) are nothing alike. except, you know, they're both girls. the "kink" as you say, is not hiding beneath kaylee, the girl is just plain horny. deal with it.


Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Some have argued for an incestuous subtext between Simon and River in the same way people saw it between Spike/his mum, Buffy/Dawn/Joyce, Connor/Cordelia. You can almost see why they'd think that, Simon hugging naked River and the little stroking gesture when he holds her hand

ugh.

Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
but as with the other examples I'm not convinced, I just think they're a very devoted brother and sister (they're all each other have in the world).

well, thank god for small favors.


Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
When Book comments that the Serenity "Doesn't look like much" Kaylee replies that "She'll fool you", are they flirting?

are you not familiar with how girls function?


Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Inarra says it best when she declares that Mal likes being 'lost in the woods' whilst Mal's view is that 'goverments are for getting in a man's way'. At the end when they've escaped Mal declares them 'Out of the woods'.
In many ways they're like the Roundheads vs the Cavaliers in the War of the Three Kingdoms (modern historians shy away from the term 'English civil war' as it also involved Ireland and Scotland and Britain didn't exist yet), the Confedracy vs Union in the US Civil War and the Republicans vs Nationalists in Spain, one side with the romance and glamour and one side with the might and right.

If you're old enough you surely remember the wonderful documentary series 'The American Civil War', the emotive Serenity music strongly resembles it. Mal speaks of the Alliance 'waltzing through serenity valley' much in the same way Sherman went 'marching through Georgia'.

the show is definitely a civil war parable, and you're right, it certainly did remind me of Ken Burns.

Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Fanfic;
Plenty of stuff showing Zoe and Mal shacking up together during the war before she met Wash

look, firefly ain't high school. firefly ain't even the post-college 20-something extended adolescences. mal is an adult. zoe is an adult. god knows book is an adult. inara is a professional, as is simon. even wash - as goofy as he is - is a married man, and takes that pretty seriously. jayne has been around the block many, many times. river's just a girl. even kaylee has been attending the school of hard knocks for so long that there just isn't that much of a ditsy girl left in her.

try and treat them like adults. you might enjoy the show a bit more.

Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Wash is very Xander with his battling dinosaurs whilst Kaylee is very Willow/Fred, Joss even describes her as having the Alysson Hannigan quality. Joss describes Jayne as 'the Cordelia' of the group in that he says out loud what everyone is thinking (sorry Adam, I think Charisma is a LOT prettier)
Simon/River very Buffy/Dawn and 'The Gift' is even mentioned. The Zoe/Mal/Wash relationship somewhat similar to Willow, Xander and Oz/Tara,

i don't even know what half that means. bottom line: firefly is not part of the Buffy/Angel verse. there are no Vampires, no high schools, no incest, no magic, no demons, no teen angst, and,

and, if you can believe it, no blond love interests.

i have nothing against you using your Buffy/Angel review format to examine firefly through a new lens. i just don't think i'm going to be along for the ride if the insights stay down at the play-ground level. mal does not put gel in his hair. space is not So. Cal. it's time to get to work.

keep flying.

I am not Spock August 5 2010 02:26 AM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Saturn, thanks for doing this. I enjoy your Joss show review threads a lot. Next up, can you do Dollhouse, please? :)

Firefly does seem to be a lot more pro-gun than Buffy. What I mean is, that Buffy and most of the other characters refuse to use guns on general principle. And there are a lot of them in Firefly. And in Angel post season 4, as you say. Mostly courtesy of Wesley.

Your Alien Resurrection and Blakes 7 comments are interesting too. I have often seen the similarities. I can see the genesis of the Firefly characters in Alien 4. And I would be interested in hearing if Joss has ever seen Blakes 7, which has a similar premise to Firefly. The show is kind of like a mix between an American Civil War parable, and Blakes 7.

lvsxy808 August 5 2010 07:07 AM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
There are no (or comparatively few) guns in Buffy because it was set in high-school, and Joss wisely thought it would be inappropriate to have high-school kids running around with guns all the time.

That's what makes episodes like "Innocence," "Earshot" and "Seeing Red" as effective as they are.

I agree that the constant incest slash fiction fixation is getting tiresome. I wouldn't be upset if you decided to tone that down a bit.

I am not Spock August 5 2010 07:14 AM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Quote:

lvsxy808 wrote: (Post 4295310)
There are no (or comparatively few) guns in Buffy because it was set in high-school, and Joss wisely thought it would be inappropriate to have high-school kids running around with guns all the time.

That's what makes episodes like "Innocence," "Earshot" and "Seeing Red" as effective as they are.

I agree that the constant incest slash fiction fixation is getting tiresome. I wouldn't be upset if you decided to tone that down a bit.

Good point.

saturn5 August 5 2010 03:06 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Quote:

Mal wrote: (Post 4293604)
i've enjoyed your Angel reviews, and even though firefly is my very favorite show ever, i'm sorry to say that i won't be following this thread, for the following reasons:


Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Naked Summer Glau, a cause for joy as anyone who ever watched The Sarah Connor Chronicles knows ("Put'em back in the holster").

i watched and very much enjoyed TSCC, but i must be missing something here. river is a scared little girl, definitely not Darla in a Box.

Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Mal tells Kaylee he's considering tying her up, gagging her and throwing her into the hold. She then kisses him and says she loves him. Much like Willow maybe there's a lot of kink beneath that sweet and innocent exterior?

kaylee and willow (from what i've seen of her in Angel) are nothing alike. except, you know, they're both girls. the "kink" as you say, is not hiding beneath kaylee, the girl is just plain horny. deal with it.




ugh.



well, thank god for small favors.




are you not familiar with how girls function?




the show is definitely a civil war parable, and you're right, it certainly did remind me of Ken Burns.

Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Fanfic;
Plenty of stuff showing Zoe and Mal shacking up together during the war before she met Wash

look, firefly ain't high school. firefly ain't even the post-college 20-something extended adolescences. mal is an adult. zoe is an adult. god knows book is an adult. inara is a professional, as is simon. even wash - as goofy as he is - is a married man, and takes that pretty seriously. jayne has been around the block many, many times. river's just a girl. even kaylee has been attending the school of hard knocks for so long that there just isn't that much of a ditsy girl left in her.

try and treat them like adults. you might enjoy the show a bit more.

Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Wash is very Xander with his battling dinosaurs whilst Kaylee is very Willow/Fred, Joss even describes her as having the Alysson Hannigan quality. Joss describes Jayne as 'the Cordelia' of the group in that he says out loud what everyone is thinking (sorry Adam, I think Charisma is a LOT prettier)
Simon/River very Buffy/Dawn and 'The Gift' is even mentioned. The Zoe/Mal/Wash relationship somewhat similar to Willow, Xander and Oz/Tara,

i don't even know what half that means. bottom line: firefly is not part of the Buffy/Angel verse. there are no Vampires, no high schools, no incest, no magic, no demons, no teen angst, and,

and, if you can believe it, no blond love interests.

i have nothing against you using your Buffy/Angel review format to examine firefly through a new lens. i just don't think i'm going to be along for the ride if the insights stay down at the play-ground level. mal does not put gel in his hair. space is not So. Cal. it's time to get to work.

keep flying.

Watch Buffy and you'll see exactly how much Willow resembles Kaylee, Wash as Xander etc And you'd enjoy a terrific show too:), not just in the high school years

Hey, I don't write Zal or slashfic but it is out there (Wincest so popular in Supernatural fanfic they made a joke about it on the show). Personally I never bought any of it except that Ares is Xena's dad, for which the evidence is overwhelming (and the Greek gods were like that:(). But sometimes people like to believe whatever suits their particular fetish. I remember when we found out Dr Who's new companion was a kissogram there were a great many people who wanted to believe that meant she was a stripper and nothing would persuade them otherwise.

VERY familar with girls thank you very much, intimate even;)

No, Firefly isn't part of the Buffyverse, it is part of the Whedonverse and if you watch his other shows and films you can see recurring themes and characters.

Yeah, no blondes so far in Firefly, maybe the Alliance banned peroxide?:lol:

Posted my reviews for the first season of Dollhouse on this forum but can't find the thread now. Have a look here http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/sh...ad.php?t=11944
and I'll post the reviews for the second season when I get the DVDs in October

McCoy August 5 2010 06:51 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4295952)
Hey, I don't write Zal or slashfic but it is out there

You sure seem to have read a lot of it though. I love reading your stuff saturn5 but I agree with lvsxy808 that the sexual fixation in all of them is getting kind of out of hand. If you dropped it I wouldn't miss it. ;)

Trekker4747 August 6 2010 01:22 AM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Much like Willow maybe there's a lot of kink beneath [Kaylee's] sweet and innocent exterior?

Oh you've nooooo idea. :devil:

Re the guns:

I think looking at the 21st century pop-guns and trying to gleam something from them about what they represent as 24th century guns is... stretching things. Esp. saying the guns the props represent are the same make and model of gun in this setting is... silly. They're futuristic guns that simply look like their 20th/21st century counterparts. Heck the guns even make electric whirs when cocked and fired.

It seems like you more-or-less got a decent bead on the series but as Mal said, somewhat harshly, you need to not look at this like the teen angst of the Buffy series and look at all of these characters as adults in a very mundane universe. Keep with the series all of the episodes are good episodes, there's only one I think is weak, and the best ones come on, IIRC, Disc 3 (notably "Out of Gas" and "Ariel.")

Seriously, if after watching those two episodes you don't think this could've been a really great series then I don't think there's any hope in the 'verse for you.

Keep flyin'

saturn5 August 6 2010 04:33 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Quote:

Trekker4747 wrote: (Post 4297525)
Quote:

saturn5 wrote: (Post 4293442)
Much like Willow maybe there's a lot of kink beneath [Kaylee's] sweet and innocent exterior?

Oh you've nooooo idea. :devil:

Re the guns:

I think looking at the 21st century pop-guns and trying to gleam something from them about what they represent as 24th century guns is... stretching things. Esp. saying the guns the props represent are the same make and model of gun in this setting is... silly. They're futuristic guns that simply look like their 20th/21st century counterparts. Heck the guns even make electric whirs when cocked and fired.

It seems like you more-or-less got a decent bead on the series but as Mal said, somewhat harshly, you need to not look at this like the teen angst of the Buffy series and look at all of these characters as adults in a very mundane universe. Keep with the series all of the episodes are good episodes, there's only one I think is weak, and the best ones come on, IIRC, Disc 3 (notably "Out of Gas" and "Ariel.")

Seriously, if after watching those two episodes you don't think this could've been a really great series then I don't think there's any hope in the 'verse for you.

Keep flyin'

Only seen Serenity so far so I can't say but I'll try to get The Train Job done this weekend. As for the sexual aspect well that depends on the ep itself, it they're all as steamy as Inarra in the first ep, no promises

saturn5 August 7 2010 07:52 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
The Train Job
The good;
We see a more moral side to the Serenity crew and love the face-off between Jayne and the other without Mal around.

The bad;
The sick bay design is rather stupid, wouldn't you want some privacy rather all those windows for people to see in? No one notices Serenity flying alongside the train?

Best line;
Zoe (about to fight the bar thugs); "Jayne?"
Jayne (shrugging) "Hey, I didn't fight in no war"
plus
Zoe; "I have an image of that guy hanging from the ceiling"
Mal " I have an image of that guy not being me"
and
Mal; (of ripping off the Alliance goods) "I would do it for free"
Zoe; "Can I have your share?"

Packing heat;
I'm reliably informed by the folks on the yuku Xena forums that the sniper rifle Jayne used in Serenity is a Blaser R93. The bar thugs pack a Colt 45, Glock and 44. Automag. The Alliance troops use H&K MP5s and SA80s.

Kinky dinky;
Sexy belly dancer.

Notches on the Serenity bedpost;
Inarra;1-a paying customer who wishes to make her his kept woman
Wash; 1-the missus
Zoe; 1-the hubby

Capt subtext;
Mal talks of 'being on the edge' then 'moving towards the middle', possibly alluding to the frontier and the central planets. Innara and Kaylee have a big girly hairstroking session (how the Summer's girls on Buffy used to express physical affection for one another). Inarra remarks to Kaylee "We could experiment". Mal seems keen on the idea and refers to Inarra 'servicing the crew' but she dismisses that as his 'lonely pathetic dreams'. Summer points out that Mal=Bad in Latin/French.
Mal tells Zoe he loves her but it's all part of their cover(?)
How'd they get away with that?
People on meathooks, never a good thing. River being experimented on also not good.

Total Serenity crew; 7(8?) River comments of Serenity "This isn't home". Book is now part of the crew with no backstory but still wonders about his role onboard. Jayne doesn't consider Simon or River part of the gang.
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kayleigh, Inarra, Book, Simon, River(?).

Subverting the Hollywood cliche;

Whedon cliches; (see I spelt it right!);
Devoted siblings, haunted charismatic leading man. Teenage girls with superpowers. Hookers. Babbling insane girls with truth in their madness.
Bondage;
Knocked out; Jayne by Simon
Book; 1
Simon; 1
Kaylee; 1
Jayne;1
Women good/men bad;

Kills; Mal kills Crow and Zoe kills at least 2 of his men
Mal; 8-
Zoe; 4-
Jayne; 2-
Happy high-class hookers in Space (the title the porn industry wished they'd thought of!);
Kaylee seems fascinated by the details of Inarra's profession. Inarra claims a companion gets to pick and choose her clients which I think is about as realistic and truthful as the Dollhouse staff pretending to themselves that they don't hire the Actives out as sexual submissives. Mal still needles Inarra about her hooking but does so more subtlely and less nastily than he did in 'Serenity'. The nature of the companions work is left very vague here, if you hadn't seen Serenity you wouldn't know exactly what her job is, she could be a beautician.
Inarra enjoys turning the tables on Mal, pretending he's her indentured man (some form of community service in the future?).
Know the face?
Tom Towles plays the thug in the bar, he's also Cooper in the far superior remake of Night of the Living Dead and guest starred in Anthony Head's series VR5 (in which he essentially plays a prototype Giles)
Whedon alumni- Joss likes to reuse the same actors in his series, let's count up their appearances (let me know if I miss any)
Nathan Fillon-3; Firefly, Caleb in S7 of Buffy and Dr Horrible
Gina Torres-2; Firefly and Jasmine in S4 of Angel
Alan Tudyk-2; Firefly and the villainous/heroic(?) Alpha in Dollhouse (haven't seen season 2 so don't spoil it for me)
Adam Baldwin-2; Firefly and Marcus Hamilton in S5 of Angel
Summer Glau-3; Firefly, Dollhouse and the prima ballerina in the LEGENDARY S4 Angel ep 'Waiting in the wings'.
Carlos Jacott-3; The Fed in Firefly, Ken in the 'Anne' ep of Buffy and Richard Straley in 'The Bachelor Party' ep of Angel.
Andy Umberger;3-the captain of the Dortmunder in Firefly, D'Hoffryn in Buffy, the psychic surgeon in the Angel ep 'I fall to pieces'.
Mark Shepherd;2-Badger in Firefly and later turns up as one of Ballard's FBI colleagues in Dollhouse. Also a BSG alumni.
Jeff Rickets;3- one of the blue handed men here and Weatherby on Buffy/Angel plus the spiderdemon at the end of Angel season 4
Gregg Henry; 2- he's one of those faces that occur time and again in TV/movies and he later recurrs in the Dollhouse ep 'Ghost', one of my favourite eps of season 1.
Alliance good or bad?;
Again we see people who are pro-Alliance and not just upper class types like Simon. Here the Alliance provide medecine for needy and as the Sherrif points out they weren't the ones whole stole it.

Fanfic;
Interesting ST:TNG fic where Picard learns that the Fedearations use of warp drive is destroying a sentient species who live in subspace. He protests to Starfleet Command but he's then asked what the alternative is, should they give up space travel leaving Starfleet defenseless against the Ferengi/Borg/Romulans? In the end he decides to toe the party line but accepts that the 'Prime directive' is an exercise in hypocrisy.

Missing scenes;.

Western cliches;
Mal is thrown through the bar window but in the future it's a forcefield. Telegraph poles beside the train track even in a world with inter-stellar travel. Jayne's 'aiming for his head' remark may be a reference to The Magnificent 7. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid/Jesse James also big on train heists (anyone watch the 'Deadliest warriror' showdown where The James Gang goes up against Al Capone? For my money it's James by a mile, he's a trained soldier and a combat veteran whilst Capone probably never faced a target who fought back.
Firefly speak;
Gorram=goddam.
Weak tea=not good
Back birth=idiot
Companion=high class courtesan
Gengish=competent
Doh-ma=understand/understood?
Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)
Shot; shot by the Fed during the robbery.
Mal; 1-
Kayleigh;1-
Jayne;1-
Crew injured;

Reminds me off;
Mal refers to 'We'll rise again' which relates to the Confedracy in US Civil War. Does anyone else expect Niska to tell a story about Meerkats and try and sell Mal cheaper car insurance? (if you're a Brit you'll understand that, if you're not don't worry about it). The town of Paradiso may refer to the old Western series 'Paradise'. Crazy genius River is very Drusilla/Pylea Fred, drugged Jayne reminiscent of AI in 'Spin the Bottle'. Wash's Hawaiin shirt is very Xander especially the one he lent to Spike in the season 4 ep Doomed. The 'we're not going' remark is reminiscent of Aliens where Ripley goes to rescue Newt. Joss in his commentary draws comparison from Mal to Angel.
Of course the Alliance remind you off Starship Troopers but then Joss explains why on the commentary.
Questions and observations;
We now know the war ended 6 years ago. Inarra has been on the ship 8 months. Here we have a much more upbeat, likeable Mal, perhaps the events of Serenity mellowed him? He even says 'It's the right thing to do'. Book refers to the 'Fuzzy wuzzies' referring to Kiplings poems concerning the Sudan campaign Britain fought against Islamic fundamentalists in C19th (and we're still doing it today!).
What is the chain of command on Serenity? It seems to go Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, after that anyone's guess. Note Mal doesn't kill the Fed on the train, just knocks him out. Joss refers to Inarra and Mal as Beatrice and Benedict from 'Much ado about nothing', check out the Kenneth Branagh version for the Beatrice and the Duke (Denzel Washington) proposal scene alone. Joss refers to Firefly as Star Trek;TNG dark underbelly, much as what was explored in DS;9.
Marks out of 10; 5 out of ten, nowhere near as good as Serenity, not a bad ep in itself but feels cheap in comparison to it's predecessor, like Charmed to Buffy.
[FONT=Arial][SIZE=2][FONT=Arial][SIZE=2] 
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saturn5 August 9 2010 06:07 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Bushwhacked
 
[FONT=Times New Roman]The good;
Clever of Mal when he's asked about the brother and sister he replies 'There are no children on this boat', exactly what you'd immediately think if someone referred to siblings. Good interrogation scenes, especially Jayne's and some tense stuff with the bomb defusal, very Juggernaut. Love River's delighted reaction to seeing the stars.

The bad;
Zoe comments that there were no signs of a struggle but surely the crew would have fought to the death against the Reavers? Why didn't the Reavers eat the bodies if they're cannibals?
Best line;
Commander; "You fought with the Captain during the war?"
Zoe; "I fought with a lot of people
Commander; "What about your husband?"
Zoe; "I fight with him too"
Packing heat;
Would conventional guns work in a vaccum? Maybe if they had futuristic ammo? The Alliance Commander packs a Barretta pistol when boarding Serenity. His troopers seem very impressed with Jayne's private arsenal, presumably the NRA sided with the Alliance as there seem to be no gun laws in the future.

Kinky dinky;
Sweaty cast playing a variation of basketball, Zoe's top especially revealing. Wash goes enthusiastically into detail about Zoe's amazing legs and 'what's above them'.

Notches on the Serenity bedpost;
Inarra;1-a paying customer who wishes to make her his kept woman
Wash; 1-the missus
Zoe; 1-the hubby

Capt subtext;
Inarra comments 'We're all running away from something'. She calls River 'sweetie' much as Kaylee does. Kaylee is very defensive of the Serenity, perhaps she identifies with the ship as herself.
How'd they get away with that?
Corpses bouncing off the windshield. The suit scene once again demonstrates the crew's rather cruel sense of humour. Self mutilating psychotic survivors.

Total Serenity crew; 7(8?)
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kayleigh, Inarra, Book, Simon, River(?).

Subverting the Hollywood cliche;
Mal punches the survivor. When the Alliance show up the crew bravely give up without a fight.

Whedon cliches; (see I spelt it right!);
Devoted siblings, haunted charismatic leading man. Teenage girls with superpowers. Hookers. Babbling insane girls with truth in their madness.
Bondage; Mal placed in handcuffs by Alliance
Mal; 1
Knocked out;
Book; 1
Simon; 1
Kaylee; 1
Jayne;1
Women good/men bad;
Zoe tells Jayne to shut up or he'll scare the women.

Kills;
Mal; 9-Mal kills the survivor
Zoe; 4-
Jayne; 2-
Happy high-class hookers in Space (the title the porn industry wished they'd thought of!);
Once again Inarra is the one with the respectable job, the Alliance commander not able to believe she's associating with this of bunch of lowlives.
Know the face?
Doug Savant of course is Tom Scavo in Desperate Housewives, a show Nathon Fillon, Julie Benz and many other Whedon alumni guest star on. I keep expecting Lynette to show up and remind him to pick up the kids. He's also one of the soldiers in Godzilla.
Whedon alumni- Joss likes to reuse the same actors in his series, let's count up their appearances (let me know if I miss any)
Nathan Fillon-3; Firefly, Caleb in S7 of Buffy and Dr Horrible
Gina Torres-2; Firefly and Jasmine in S4 of Angel
Alan Tudyk-2; Firefly and the villainous/heroic(?) Alpha in Dollhouse (haven't seen season 2 so don't spoil it for me)
Adam Baldwin-2; Firefly and Marcus Hamilton in S5 of Angel
Summer Glau-3; Firefly, Dollhouse and the prima ballerina in the LEGENDARY S4 Angel ep 'Waiting in the wings'.
Carlos Jacott-3; The Fed in Firefly, Ken in the 'Anne' ep of Buffy and Richard Straley in 'The Bachelor Party' ep of Angel.
Andy Umberger;3-the captain of the Dortmunder in Firefly, D'Hoffryn in Buffy, the psychic surgeon in the Angel ep 'I fall to pieces'.
Mark Shepherd;2-Badger in Firefly and later turns up as one of Ballard's FBI colleagues in Dollhouse. Also a BSG alumni.
Jeff Rickets;3- one of the blue handed men in Firefly and Weatherby on Buffy/Angel plus the spiderdemon at the end of Angel season 4
Gregg Henry; 2- he's one of those faces that occur time and again in TV/movies, the Sherrif in The Train Job and he later recurrs in the Dollhouse ep 'Ghost', one of my favourite eps of season 1.
Alliance good or bad?;
Mal mocks the idea of the Alliance turning up to rescue their taxpayers whereupon they do exactly that. The Commander has seen torture during the war, by the Alliance to the Browncoats or vice versa? He comments that 'For some the war will never be over', does he mean for him or for Mal? He shows genuine concern for the dead passengers and when the pseudo-Reaver breaks free his first act is for a guard to be placed on the ships nursery. He leads the Alliance team onto the Serenity himself. In the end he lets them all go.

Fanfic;

Missing scenes;.

Western cliches;.
The term bushwhacked and bushwhacker comes from the US Civil War where both sides sponsored bands of guerillas to operate behind their opponent's lines. In reality these were little more than state sponsored brigands, the movies 'Ride with the Devil' and 'The Outlaw Josey Wales' giving a good idea of their actions. The most famous of all was Jesse James, a former bushwhacker who became a robber and outlaw because he couldn't accept the war was over, just as the Alliance Commander accuses Mal of doing here.
Firefly speak;
Gorram=goddam.
Weak tea=not good
Back birth=idiot
Companion=high class courtesan
Gengish=competent
Doh-ma=understand/understood?
Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)
Chin-cha-da=hell
Purple belly=officious bureaucrat
Ta-gow=Oh god!
Shot; .
Mal; 1-
Kayleigh;1-
Jayne;1-
Crew injured;

Reminds me off;
The ghost ship is very Marie Celeste with hints of Alien and 2010 (especially the way it spins). How they find the survivor is very similar to the marines discovering Newt in Aliens. Jayne's description of his unseen attacker as 'big, strong' recalls the commandos describing Buffy after she rescues Willow in the s4 ep 'The Initiative'. Mal's talk of the darkness is similar to Nietschze's observation that if you stare into the abyss for long enough it stares back into you. The booby trap reminds me of an effect from Babylon 5, something the Drakh would use.
Questions and observations;
I somehow feel the red balloon they find on the ship has some significance but I just can't think what? According to the Commander there are 40,000 Firefly type craft in the galaxy. It's been 4 months since The Train Job as Inarra says she's now been with the crew nearly a year. Exactly why does the Commander want to know the details of Zoe and Wash's marriage? Three eps in we have yet to see a real Reaver although here we get a glimpse of a pseudo one. How intelligent are they? They can operate spaceships and leave a boobytrap so they must have some sentience?
Marks out of 10; 7/10, interesting
[/FONT]

saturn5 August 10 2010 04:05 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Shindig
 
[FONT=Times New Roman]The good;
Kaylee is the belle of the ball and isn't she WONDERFUL! Mal swordfighting and lots of good stuff with Badger, especially his conversation with River. Adore Mal's looks of amazement as Jayne knows what 'pretentious' means.
The bad;
The cows in the final scene are amazingly quiet whilst Mal and Inara are talking.
Best line;
Kaylee; "Great party, huh?"
Debutante; "Not as good as last year"
Kaylee; "Why, what did they have last year?"
Debutante; (looking Kaylee up and down) "Standards"
To quote Cameron on The Sarah Connor Chronicles 'Bitchwhore much?"
Also like;
Kaylee; "Maybe that's him over there?"
Mal; "That's the buffet table"
Kaylee; (hungrily) "How will we know if we don't ask?"
Packing heat;
Swords this time. Badger's men use an MP40 Schmeisser, an Uzi and an AK-47, the guest at the party seems to have a Colt .32 pocket pistol. Jayne packs what looks like a Mossberg shotgun on the Serenity.
Kinky dinky;
Naked Wash and Zoe get it on again, Zoe complimenting Wash that he 'knows all the steps'. Inarra's outfit at the party is also quite something. Kaylee comments that Mal's outfit shows off his backside and Inara subsequently spanks it with her sword.
Notches on the Serenity bedpost; Inara is hired for the evening but we've no idea if they have sex or not so I'll put him down as a possible.
Inarra;1-a paying customer who wishes to make her his kept woman, 1 possible, Atherton.
Wash; 1-the missus
Zoe; 1-the hubby

Capt subtext;
Wash jokingly refers to 'jealous men like me' regarding Zoe but is he really joking or sending Mal a not so subtle message? When Kaylee says 'Look at the pretties' Mal asks if she means the girls or the clothes? Mal and Jayne snigger as Badger implies he has his hands on some diamond testicles. Mal observes Atherton is such a catch 'I'm liable to sleep with him myself'.
How'd they get away with that?
Mal gratuitously stabbing Atherton after he's defeated him in the duel. Mal's remark comparing Kaylee to a sheep dancing on it's hind legs is INCREDIBLY insensitive, Jayne's gynacologist joke in the ep Serenity is less offensive.

Total Serenity crew; 8(9?)
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, Inarra, Book, Simon, River(?).

Subverting the Hollywood cliche;
After sex it's Zoe who wants to sleep and Wash to stay awake. When Mal claims he cannot run Inara correctly points out that he runs away all the time. Mal is far from stoic when complaining about his wounds later.
Whedon cliches; (see I spelt it right!);
Devoted siblings, haunted charismatic leading man. Teenage girls with superpowers. Hookers. Babbling insane girls with truth in their madness. Fake cockneys.
Bondage;
Mal; 1
Knocked out;
Book; 1
Simon; 1
Kaylee; 1
Jayne;1
Women good/men bad;
It's not enough for Atherton to simply hire Inara for her charms he wants to own her completely and deny her to other men, like she's some form of possession.
Kills;
Mal; 9-
Zoe; 4-
Jayne; 2-
Happy high-class hookers in Space (the title the porn industry wished they'd thought of!);
Inara greets several other companions at the party. They are used by rich men as status symbols, who has the best one get's the most kudos. At the end she freezes him out, no other companion will now work for him after how he's treated her. Mal refers to the companion training school as a whore academy (jeez the man has NO CLUE!)
Know the face?
Larry Drake is familar to 80s TV viewers as Benny in LA Law, the nicest man in the world and to horror fans from Darkman and Dr Giggles where he plays the nastiest men in the world. He also stars with Whedon alumnis Alyssin Hannigan in American Pie 2 and Amber Benson in the dreadful B-movie Gryphon.
Whedon alumni- Joss likes to reuse the same actors in his series, let's count up their appearances (let me know if I miss any)
Nathan Fillon-3; Firefly, Caleb in S7 of Buffy and Dr Horrible
Gina Torres-2; Firefly and Jasmine in S4 of Angel
Alan Tudyk-2; Firefly and the villainous/heroic(?) Alpha in Dollhouse (haven't seen season 2 so don't spoil it for me)
Adam Baldwin-2; Firefly and Marcus Hamilton in S5 of Angel
Summer Glau-3; Firefly, Dollhouse and the prima ballerina in the LEGENDARY S4 Angel ep 'Waiting in the wings'.
Carlos Jacott-3; The Fed in Firefly, Ken in the 'Anne' ep of Buffy and Richard Straley in 'The Bachelor Party' ep of Angel.
Andy Umberger;3-the captain of the Dortmunder in Firefly, D'Hoffryn in Buffy, the psychic surgeon in the Angel ep 'I fall to pieces'.
Mark Shepherd;2-Badger in Firefly and later turns up as one of Ballard's FBI colleagues in Dollhouse. Also a BSG alumni.
Jeff Rickets;3- one of the blue handed men in Firefly and Weatherby on Buffy/Angel plus the spiderdemon at the end of Angel season 4
Gregg Henry; 2- he's one of those faces that occur time and again in TV/movies, the Sherrif in The Train Job and he later recurrs in the Dollhouse ep 'Ghost', one of my favourite eps of season 1.
Alliance good or bad?;
Would the Alliance allow slavery (or dueling?) on their worlds? Or are they like the Union forces in the American Civil War/British Empire in the 18/19th century, abolishing it wherever they go?
Fanfic;
Mal and Inara getting together after this ep is common but a sizeable minority like to pair her up with Atherton, presumably the same folks who think Kate Winslet should have stuck with Billy Zane in Titanic (Mae West's quote of wanting a man who's "handsome, rich and cruel" springs to mind") If you like things a LOT more adult there's also one where Kaylee's admirers invite her to an after hours party and then indulge in group sex with her, more or less consensually (ie she starts off as less but ends up as more).
Missing scenes;.
Reputedly there was a scene where we see Mal unload the walking arsenal he carries in his pockets before entering the ballroom plus a derringer he has Kaylee carrying for him in her stockings tops. Also a scene where we Larry Drake's character and Badger fall out and Inara gossiping with her fellow companions at the dance.

Western cliches;
Nice in a western series to finally have the Serenity with a hold full of cattle, once again food is one of the most precious commodities in the Fireflyverse, especially some good steak as Jayne observes earlier in the episode.
Firefly speak;
Gorram=goddam.
Weak tea=not good
Back birth=idiot
Companion=high class courtesan
Gengish=competent
Doh-ma=understand/understood?
Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)
Chin-cha-da=hell
Purple belly=officious bureaucrat
Ta-gow=Oh god!
Won-gwa-pee= to urinate or defecate
Gosa=excrement
Shot; .
Mal; 1-
Kayleigh;1-
Jayne;1-
Crew injured;
Mal pretty badly sliced up in the duel at the end.
Reminds me off;
Deranged River talking in her faux cockney accent is VERY Drusilla indeed. Inara the high class lady of the night is very Darla and her love/hate relationship with brooding hero Mal somewhat akin to Darla and Angel. Mal's hatred of slavery is reminiscent of Han Solo. The bitchy girls at the party are awfully like the Cordettes on Buffy. Kaylee's hilarious expression as Mal tells her that he has a job for her is very like Willow's when Riley's wife Sam makes suggestions for Xander's wedding in the s6 Buffy ep 'As you were'. Wash is a bad poet, much like Spike and not really an action man as with Xander. Jane comments that the Serenity crew are the misfits who don't fit in much like the Scoobs at Sunnydale High.
Kaylee's rescuer at the party does indeed remind me of an older Clark Gable as the commentary observes but also of Dr Huer from the old Buck Rogers TV series.
Questions and observations;
They still have the peerage system in the future. Unfortunately they've also got slavery too, even on a fairly civilized world like Persephone . 'Magic' Jane Espenson, hooray! Inara seems to have a thing about slumming, she really is out of place in the Firefly crew and certainly in the bar Mal and Jayne take her to. More social climbing by Badger but he's useless at it, crustless sandwiches (cucumber?) mixed with wood alcohol hooch, no wonder he needed Mal to be the middleman for him in the deal, at least he can fake class convincingly. Kaylee's surname is Lee Fry. She once again shows her love of fruit, both mangoes and strawberries as does Badger who's at the apples again. Zoe's remark about Jayne slitting her throat and taking over the ship again suggests he's the unofficial 3rd in command. However he wants to rescue Mal when Badger comes to the ship.
Mal is in many ways too honest and honourable for the criminal world, he's probably more like the Alliance than he cares to admit but can't stand submitting to their authority.
Marks out of 10; 7/10 pretty good .
[/FONT]

Trekker4747 August 10 2010 04:53 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Dude, you need to learn how to format your posts so they're more readable. And the "Font" tags don't work on this BBS.

Here:

Quote:


Shindig

The good:
Kaylee is the belle of the ball and isn't she WONDERFUL?! Mal swordfighting and lots of good stuff with Badger, especially his conversation with River. Adore Mal's looks of amazement as Jayne knows what 'pretentious' means.

The bad:
The cows in the final scene are amazingly quiet whilst Mal and Inara are talking.

Best line:
Kaylee: "Great party, huh?"
Debutante: "Not as good as last year"
Kaylee: "Why, what did they have last year?"
Debutante: (looking Kaylee up and down) "Standards"

To quote Cameron on The Sarah Connor Chronicles "Bitchwhore much?"

Also liked:
Kaylee: "Maybe that's him over there?"
Mal: "That's the buffet table"
Kaylee: (hungrily) "How will we know if we don't ask?"

Packing heat:
Swords this time. Badger's men use an MP40 Schmeisser, an Uzi and an AK-47, the guest at the party seems to have a Colt .32 pocket pistol. Jayne packs what looks like a Mossberg shotgun on the Serenity.

Kinky dinky:
Naked Wash and Zoe get it on again, Zoe complimenting Wash that he 'knows all the steps'. Inarra's outfit at the party is also quite something. Kaylee comments that Mal's outfit shows off his backside and Inara subsequently spanks it with her sword.
Notches on the Serenity bedpost; Inara is hired for the evening but we've no idea if they have sex or not so I'll put him down as a possible.

Inarra:1-a paying customer who wishes to make her his kept woman, 1 possible, Atherton.
Wash: 1-the missus
Zoe: 1-the hubby

Capt subtext:
Wash jokingly refers to 'jealous men like me' regarding Zoe but is he really joking or sending Mal a not so subtle message? When Kaylee says 'Look at the pretties' Mal asks if she means the girls or the clothes? Mal and Jayne snigger as Badger implies he has his hands on some diamond testicles. Mal observes Atherton is such a catch "I'm liable to sleep with him myself!" How'd they get away with that?

Mal gratuitously stabbing Atherton after he's defeated him in the duel. Mal's remark comparing Kaylee to a sheep dancing on it's hind legs is INCREDIBLY insensitive, Jayne's gynacologist joke in the ep Serenity is less offensive.

Total Serenity crew: 8(9?)
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, Inarra, Book, Simon, River(?).
For what it is worth, I'm not sure this point is worth making in every review.

Subverting the Hollywood cliche:
After sex it's Zoe who wants to sleep and Wash to stay awake. When Mal claims he cannot run Inara correctly points out that he runs away all the time. Mal is far from stoic when complaining about his wounds later.
Whedon cliches: [The "cliches" thing isn't needed evertime]
Devoted siblings, haunted charismatic leading man. Teenage girls with superpowers. Hookers. Babbling insane girls with truth in their madness. Fake cockneys.

Bondage:
Mal: 1

Knocked out:
Book: 1
Simon: 1
Kaylee: 1
Jayne: 1

Women good/men bad:
It's not enough for Atherton to simply hire Inara for her charms he wants to own her completely and deny her to other men, like she's some form of possession.

Kills:
Mal: 9
Zoe: 4
Jayne: 2

Happy high-class hookers in Space (the title the porn industry wished they'd thought of!):
For what it's worth, I'm not sure the parenthetical is needed.
Inara greets several other companions at the party. They are used by rich men as status symbols, who has the best one get's the most kudos. At the end she freezes him out, no other companion will now work for him after how he's treated her. Mal refers to the companion training school as a whore academy (jeez the man has NO CLUE!).

Know the face?
Larry Drake is familar to 80s TV viewers as Benny in LA Law, the nicest man in the world and to horror fans from Darkman and Dr Giggles where he plays the nastiest men in the world. He also stars with Whedon alumnis Alyssin Hannigan in American Pie 2 and Amber Benson in the dreadful B-movie Gryphon.

Whedon alumni:
Joss likes to reuse the same actors in his series, let's count up their appearances (let me know if I miss any)

Nathan Fillon-3: Firefly, Caleb in S7 of Buffy and Dr Horrible

Gina Torres-2: Firefly and Jasmine in S4 of Angel

Alan Tudyk-2: Firefly and the villainous/heroic(?) Alpha in Dollhouse (haven't seen season 2 so don't spoil it for me)

Adam Baldwin-2: Firefly and Marcus Hamilton in S5 of Angel

Summer Glau-3: Firefly, Dollhouse and the prima ballerina in the LEGENDARY S4 Angel ep 'Waiting in the wings'.

Carlos Jacott-3: The Fed in Firefly, Ken in the 'Anne' ep of Buffy and Richard Straley in 'The Bachelor Party' ep of Angel.

Andy Umberger: 3-the captain of the Dortmunder in Firefly, D'Hoffryn in Buffy, the psychic surgeon in the Angel ep 'I fall to pieces'.

Mark Shepherd: 2-Badger in Firefly and later turns up as one of Ballard's FBI colleagues in Dollhouse. Also a BSG alumni.

Jeff Rickets: 3- one of the blue handed men in Firefly and Weatherby on Buffy/Angel plus the spiderdemon at the end of Angel season 4

Gregg Henry: 2- he's one of those faces that occur time and again in TV/movies, the Sherrif in The Train Job and he later recurrs in the Dollhouse ep 'Ghost', one of my favourite eps of season 1.

Alliance good or bad?:
Would the Alliance allow slavery (or dueling?) on their worlds? Or are they like the Union forces in the American Civil War/British Empire in the 18/19th century, abolishing it wherever they go?

Fanfic:
Mal and Inara getting together after this ep is common but a sizeable minority like to pair her up with Atherton, presumably the same folks who think Kate Winslet should have stuck with Billy Zane in Titanic (Mae West's quote of wanting a man who's "handsome, rich and cruel" springs to mind") If you like things a LOT more adult there's also one where Kaylee's admirers invite her to an after hours party and then indulge in group sex with her, more or less consensually (ie she starts off as less but ends up as more).

Missing scenes:
Reputedly there was a scene where we see Mal unload the walking arsenal he carries in his pockets before entering the ballroom plus a derringer he has Kaylee carrying for him in her stockings tops. Also a scene where we Larry Drake's character and Badger fall out and Inara gossiping with her fellow companions at the dance.

Western cliches:
Nice in a western series to finally have the Serenity with a hold full of cattle, once again food is one of the most precious commodities in the Fireflyverse, especially some good steak as Jayne observes earlier in the episode.

Firefly speak:
Another section I'm not sure is needed for every review.
Gorram=goddam.
Weak tea=not good
Back birth=idiot
Companion=high class courtesan
Gengish=competent
Doh-ma=understand/understood?
Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)
Chin-cha-da=hell
Purple belly=officious bureaucrat
Ta-gow=Oh god!
Won-gwa-pee= to urinate or defecate
Gosa=excrement

Shot:
Mal: 1
Kaylee: 1 [Her name has been misspelled here many times as "Kayleigh"]
Jayne:1

Crew injured:
Mal pretty badly sliced up in the duel at the end.

Reminds me of:
Deranged River talking in her faux cockney accent is VERY Drusilla indeed. Inara the high class lady of the night is very Darla and her love/hate relationship with brooding hero Mal somewhat akin to Darla and Angel. Mal's hatred of slavery is reminiscent of Han Solo. The bitchy girls at the party are awfully like the Cordettes on Buffy. Kaylee's hilarious expression as Mal tells her that he has a job for her is very like Willow's when Riley's wife Sam makes suggestions for Xander's wedding in the s6 Buffy ep 'As you were'. Wash is a bad poet, much like Spike and not really an action man as with Xander. Jane comments that the Serenity crew are the misfits who don't fit in much like the Scoobs at Sunnydale High.

Kaylee's rescuer at the party does indeed remind me of an older Clark Gable as the commentary observes but also of Dr Huer from the old Buck Rogers TV series.

Questions and observations:
They still have the peerage system in the future. Unfortunately they've also got slavery too, even on a fairly civilized world like Persephone . 'Magic' Jane Espenson, hooray! Inara seems to have a thing about slumming, she really is out of place in the Firefly crew and certainly in the bar Mal and Jayne take her to. More social climbing by Badger but he's useless at it, crustless sandwiches (cucumber?) mixed with wood alcohol hooch, no wonder he needed Mal to be the middleman for him in the deal, at least he can fake class convincingly. Kaylee's surname is Lee Fry. She once again shows her love of fruit, both mangoes and strawberries as does Badger who's at the apples again. Zoe's remark about Jayne slitting her throat and taking over the ship again suggests he's the unofficial 3rd in command. However he wants to rescue Mal when Badger comes to the ship.

Mal is in many ways too honest and honourable for the criminal world, he's probably more like the Alliance than he cares to admit but can't stand submitting to their authority.

Marks out of 10: 7/10 pretty good .

I suspect that using the semicolon rather than the colon to make headings is a "British English" thing. But nevertheless, I think this formating is a bit cleaner, less cluttered and less old-school BBS in 1991 looking.

saturn5 August 13 2010 12:09 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
Safe
 
[FONT=Times New Roman]The good;
River dancing is just wonderful as is Simon's happiness at it. The scene where the rest of the crew rescue them is terrific as is Jayne looting their stuff.

The bad;
Can someone please explain to me exactly when the hillbillies work out that Simon is a doctor? Also what sort of supplies do they have for him to work with?

Best line;
Jayne; (pretending to read Simon's diary) "Dear diary, today I was pompus and my sister acted crazy"

Packing heat;
Everyone's guns sound very different in this ep, more zingy and less like conventional firearms. The villains/cops 6-shooters also seem to hold an inordinate number of rounds. The lead cop packs a 44. Magnum. Mal and Jayne use Mossberg shotguns and Zoe utilises a full size Winchester rifle rather than her normal cutdown version.

Kinky dinky;
Kaylee wants to bite Simon all over? Jayne seems to derive pleasure from having watched the cows being fed by beautiful women (presumably Kaylee and Zoe rather than Inara and River?)

Notches on the Serenity bedpost;
Inarra;1-a paying customer who wishes to make her his kept woman, 1 possible, Atherton.
Wash; 1-the missus
Zoe; 1-the hubby


Capt subtext;
Is Kaylee the duck and Inara the swan?

How'd they get away with that?
Skinning the hare is nasty but makes it's point. Burning witches at the stake.

Total Serenity crew; 9 Simon and River's status onboard confirmed
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, Inarra, Book, Simon, River(?).

Subverting the Hollywood cliche;
Clever mislead, we think the hillbillies are savages but actually they're just desperate people who need a doctor.

Whedon cliches; (see I spelt it right!);
Devoted siblings, haunted charismatic leading man. Teenage girls with superpowers. Hookers. Babbling insane girls with truth in their madness. Fake cockneys. Misguided religious zealots. Numbered t-shirts.

Bondage; River tied to a stake
Mal; 1
River; 1

Knocked out; Book goes unconscious after being shot
Book; 2
Simon; 1
Kaylee; 1
Jayne;1

Women good/men bad;

Kills;
Mal; 9-
Zoe; 4-
Jayne; 2-

Happy high-class hookers in Space (the title the porn industry wished they'd thought of!);

Know the face?
High School Musical star Zac Efron as young Simon, he'll later star in '17 Again' with Whedon alumni Michelle Tractenberg.

Whedon alumni- Joss likes to reuse the same actors in his series, let's count up their appearances (let me know if I miss any)
Nathan Fillon-3; Firefly, Caleb in S7 of Buffy and Dr Horrible
Gina Torres-2; Firefly and Jasmine in S4 of Angel
Alan Tudyk-2; Firefly and the villainous/heroic(?) Alpha in Dollhouse (haven't seen season 2 so don't spoil it for me)
Adam Baldwin-2; Firefly and Marcus Hamilton in S5 of Angel
Summer Glau-3; Firefly, Dollhouse and the prima ballerina in the LEGENDARY S4 Angel ep 'Waiting in the wings'.
Carlos Jacott-3; The Fed in Firefly, Ken in the 'Anne' ep of Buffy and Richard Straley in 'The Bachelor Party' ep of Angel.
Andy Umberger;3-the captain of the Dortmunder in Firefly, D'Hoffryn in Buffy, the psychic surgeon in the Angel ep 'I fall to pieces'.
Mark Shepherd;2-Badger in Firefly and later turns up as one of Ballard's FBI colleagues in Dollhouse. Also a BSG alumni.
Jeff Rickets;3- one of the blue handed men in Firefly and Weatherby on Buffy/Angel plus the spiderdemon at the end of Angel season 4
Gregg Henry; 2- he's one of those faces that occur time and again in TV/movies, the Sherrif in The Train Job and he later recurrs in the Dollhouse ep 'Ghost', one of my favourite eps of season 1.

Alliance good or bad?;
Mal runs to the Alliance in order to save Book, how that must choke him! They seem reluctant to provide but don't say no outright. Then our Shepherd slips them an ID card? Hmmmmm.

Fanfic;

Missing scenes;
Reputedly scenes where the Alliance question the Tam's parents after Simon rescues River, River reading Ruby's mind and seeing her tragic story plus paying Badger his share, his hoodlums unable to believe that Mal doesn't try to rip them off, much to Badger's chagrin at Mal's moral superiority again.

Western cliches;
Hillbillies kidnapping folk. Zoe actually shoots the gun out of one of the bad guy's hand.

Firefly speak;
Gorram=goddam.
Weak tea=not good
Back birth=idiot
Companion=high class courtesan
Gengish=competent
Doh-ma=understand/understood?
Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)
Chin-cha-da=hell
Purple belly=officious bureaucrat
Ta-gow=Oh god!
Won-gwa-pee= to urinate or defecate
Gosa=excrement
Tien-sha-duh=rubbish
Los-soh-ret=crap
Dien-dyododo-chowen=bastard
Wah=what the hell?
Mah song=quickly
Jin-seen-yung=idiot

Shot; .Book shot during a the gunfight with the cattle
Mal; 1-
Kayleigh;1-
Jayne;1-
Book;1-

Crew injured;
Simon knocked around yet again, he seems to be everyone's punching bag.

Reminds me off;
River on the pyre reminds of Buffy, Willow and Amy tied to the stake and almost burnt as witches by M.O.O

Questions and observations;
So, what is Book's past and why do the Alliance treat him like a VIP once he identifies himself? Is he a former Alliance General guilt-ridden by his role during the war? A former spy who sold out the Independents? A scientist who carried out experiments like those conducted on River?
Mal finally makes a deal and actually earns some more or less honest money from it. Presumably this pays for the slap up meal the crew enjoy at the end of the ep. Mal asks why things never go smooth for them, once again we see that he's not really suited to a life of crime. As we suspected River and Simon were pro-Alliance before River's ordeal, casting the Browncoats as the enemy in their games. The locals describe the Serenity as a fancy vessel, would do Kaylee's heart good to hear that but it really underlines how remote and backward they are if they think that. This ep is set 3 weeks after the last so a planet 3 weeks travel from Persephone must be remote indeed. Jayne enjoys smacking the cows around? Once again father's get a hard time in the Whedonverse although the Tam's parents seem nice enough folks.
Marks out of 10; 7/10, nothing very startling here, nice to have River and Simon confirmed as part of the crew and I like the dance scene
[/FONT]
Better format?

Pemmer Harge August 13 2010 07:53 PM

Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews
 
I thought Safe was the best episode so far. It felt more substantial than the earlier ones and was pretty exciting too.


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