Frankly if I was Mal I'd have stalled him for as long as possible, better to talk than to be tortured!
Real white knuckle stuff with Zoe and Kaylee on the garbage barge, Indy snatching his hat close. Also love a paralysed, terrified Jayne at Simon's mercy calling out 'Anybody there?" only for River to stick her head around the corner of the door, for such a little thing she can be extremely sinister ("When did your little sister become unbelievably scary?"). 2nd appearance for Saffron and when you see her turn up you just know it's going to be a good one, the interplay between her and Mal and the bitchy rivalry between her and Inara is delicious. Really like Monty too, hope we see him again, with beard or without.
Doesn't anyone notice a bloody great spaceship like Serenity screwing with the garbage?
Saffron; (of Mal) "He's my husband"
Mal; "Well who the hell in the galaxy ain't!?"
Doren; (after Mal has explained they're here to steal his property but that Saffron lied to him) "I appreciate your honesty...not you know, a lot...but...."
The whole plot revolves around 'The Lassiter', an antique laser pistol of untold value (check out Jayne's double take when he hears the name). We've seldom seen projectile energy weapons in the Fireflyverse, most people seem to still rely on lead. Noticeably the police on the core worlds seem to use some form of advanced stun guns whilst those on the outer planets stick with bullets. Because they need more firepower out in the wilds or just haven't been issued the new weaponry yet? Inara with a gun, the first time we see her with one. Needless to say it's an elegant, delicate looking affair, maybe a Ruger .22 or something similar.
Naked Mal. Give Joss his due, whilst he has plenty of female nudity on his shows he makes sure there's plenty of male eye candy too (Spike, Angel, all the Actives in the Dollhouse showers). He frisks Saf-Brid-Yol commenting he's "never been there before'.
Notches on the Serenity bedpost
Inarra;3+1 possible, Atherton.
Wash; 1-the missus
Zoe; 1-the hubby
One thing that was suggested to me in feedback for my review of War Stories is that Inara's customer was able to provide sophisticated medical equipment at the drop of a hat which Simon uses to sew Mal's ear back on. At the end the crew wonder out loud how she's able to do that so easily but if we do believe that Inara is sick, maybe this was all intended for her as part of her treatment?
Inara accuses Mal of avoiding the core planets not through his hatred for the Alliance or wish to avoid law enforcement but because he's jealous of her clients and wants to stop her working. Mal doesn't mind be called a thief, he just objects to being a 'petty' thief? Or does Inara just mean he's petty about her and a thief? Perhaps Inara resents Saffron so much because she recognises her as a fallen version of herself?
Total Serenity crew
; 9-Inara refers to 'our cut' and actually participates in the plan which is unusual for her (or at least she's the backup for when it inevitably all goes wrong). Simon and River inform Jayne they won't kill him for his betrayal because they consider him part of their crew.
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, Inarra, Simon, River, Book
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. Girls with botanical names (Willow, Saffron, Jasmine). Absent fathers. Clever use of extensive flashbacks. Women in boxes.
; Jayne by an electric shock
Women good/men bad
Even by his standards Jayne is amazingly crude to Simon and River, threatening to show then his 'man parts' and proclaiming that 'womenfolk ain't to be trusted'. Saffron leaving Mal naked in the desert in undoubteldy funny although would it have been acceptable to us if Mal had done the same to her?
Happy high-class hookers in Space
Inara refers to her 'house mistress', presumably some form of high-ranking companion supervisor/tutor. She also refers to the Geisha dolls Mal has been smuggling, a similar profession to her own. Is she Mal's Geisha Doll? Mal calls Saffron a 'Dirty, dirty whore' as an insult, once again showing how his mind works. Saffron asks Doren if he regards her as his 'Princess in the tower', maybe suggesting she was a companion who made the mistake of becoming a kept woman as a couple of Inara's past clients have wanted of her.
- 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.
Christina Hendricks; 2-Saffron in Firefly and a bar maid in the Angel ep 'The Prodigal'. She'll later star in Mad Men with Whedonverse alumni Vincent Kartheiser.
Ira Steck; 2-The intern here and the vamp Buffy fights in 'Lies my parents told me'.
Michael Nagy; 3-one of the hospital staff here, the Rat Pack vamp Jay-Don in the Angel ep 'The Shroud of Rahmon' and Alfonse (one of vampWillow's lackeys) in the Buffy ep Dopplegangland.
Cathy Cohen; 2-the admitting nurse here and the estate agent who hits on cool Xander in the Buffy ep The Replacement.
Alliance good or bad?;
Mal actually shows real sympathy for Duren even though Saffron claims he's an Alliance war criminal, pronouncing him the one guy 'who don't have it coming'. Maybe Mal is starting to put the war behind him? (Or did his own share of looting which is how he afforded the Serenity?)
Weak tea=not good
Companion=high class courtesan
Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)
Purple belly=officious bureaucrat
Won-gwa-pee= to urinate or defecate
Wah=what the hell?
Mei, mei=little sister
Swa-shi=petty, small time
Mal gets a bloody nose from Saf-Brid-Yol.
Reminds me off;
Inara's pistol is reminiscent of Princess Leia's in Star Wars. The police vehicles remind me of US Navy Viking ASW planes. The phonebox amongst Doren's collection may refer to Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. Floating balloons on tethers as we saw in The Initiative and may refer to The Prisoner. One of the fences Mal suggests is called Ellison, again a famous sci-fi author.
Questions and observations;
All the mechanics on the Serenity seem to (literally) revolve around the one moving part, it's like the engine on the Beatles' Yellow Submarine or something. So what did happen to Heinrich the security guy? Saffron refers to a fence she has standing by on Prersephone to buy the Lassiter, does she mean Badger? Simon is noticeably dressing down now, no longer so dandy as he used to be (like Wes on Angel). Does River just sense Jayne's betrayal on Ariel or can she actually read his mind? Check out Kaylee's flowery cup, you just instinctively know it's hers. It seems to be you can now fix spinal damage with a simple injection.
So, River tells Jayne that she can kill him with her mind? Does she mean by telling what she knows? Because she's so much smarter than him? Or does she mean literally, implying once again the supersoldier/Dark Phoenix from the X-men idea?
Marks out of 10
[/FONT]8 out of 10, an awful lot of fun to be had, as Mal says at the end, it's a good day. For me Firefly is very much hitting it's stride at this point.