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Old August 26 2010, 03:34 PM   #125
Fleet Captain
Re: Firefly ep by ep; rewatch and reviews

Well leaving my gender issues aside for one moment CC does have a lesbian scene in the movie The Groomsman I belive, anyone ever seen it?
And when I try to preview my posts it just screws them up royally! Only one more to go anyway

The good;
All of it, very, very good, especially love the opening of Summer as she prowls around the ship listening to everyone's thoughts, the character of Jubal Early, the crew's meeting to discuss River and her plan is inspired.
The bad;
River's reluctance to use firearms to dispose of Early seems a little strange, she's never seemed to have any reservations before. Plus shooting him would be a lot more humane than leaving him to suffocate?
Best line;
Simon; "My sisters a ship, we had a complicated childhood"
Mal; "If I wanted medical jargon I'd talk to a doctor"
Simon; "You ARE talking to a doctor"
Simon; "Come on out Summer, the nice man wants to kidnap you"

Packing heat;
River get's her hands on Jayne's Desert Eagle 44. Magnum (which dwarfs her), possibly because she senses the impending threat of Early. Jayne says it won't penetrate the ship's hull, that not even Vera could do that. Early has a 'finely crafted pistol' but it seems to be a pure prop gun rather than any contemporary firearm. On his commentary Joss says he doesn't like guns but Buffy aside you'd be hard put to accept that to judge by his shows/films.
Jayne boasts about once hitting a man at 500yrds with a bent scope (Patience's men in Serenity?)

Kinky dinky;
Early threatens to rape Kaylee to get her co-operation. We take it that when he talks of giving Kaylee and 'present' and ridding her off a 'problem' he means River but maybe he takes her as a virgin and is telling her they're going to have sex? River observes he's all about "Power, control, pain'
River voyeuristically 'mindrops' on Wash and Zoe getting kissy on the bridge (aside from Homer and Marge they seem to be the most sexually active married couple ever). Topless Simon for the straight girls and sly boys (Joss admits he doesn't mind giving his audience some cheesecake) plus him playing footsie with Kaylee. He also relates the story of some youthful streaking to celebrate his graduation as a surgeon.
Book is celibate but avoids the question of masturbation.
Notches on the Serenity bedpost; we don't know what happens between Kaylee and Early after he ties her up but I don't think so. She also relates a possible story about bedding a 14 year old 'genetic experiment' but again, unconfirmed.

Inarra;3+1 possible, Atherton.
Wash; 1-the missus
Zoe; 1-the hubby
Jayne; 1-at least 1 Heart of Gold whore and possibly many others
Mal; 1-Nandi

Capt subtext;
Mal says that he's perfectly fine with Kaylee never having killed anyone, he wants to keep her the one sweet and innocent thing in his life. Early's fate, left hanging in space with an uncertain future is a metaphor for the series itself.
When Jayne threatens that he and Wash will 'Go somewhere' over his teasing Wash says he hopes it's somewhere with candlelight.

How'd they get away with that?
Early threatening Kaylee is hard to watch as is his pistol whipping Inara across the face. Early licks the ship? Is he descended from Benton Fraser RCMP?

Total Serenity crew; 9-
Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, Inarra, Simon, River, Book

Subverting the Hollywood cliche;
We expect Book to tell the truth about being knocked out but he actually lies. We think Jayne is reaching his arsenal when he pulls the curtain back but actually he's just grabbing a blanket. Kaylee actually gives in, surrenders to Early and let's him tie her up, betraying River to him.

Whedon cliches;
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. Misogynists who get what's coming to them.

Bondage; Kaylee tied up by Early
Mal; 2
River; 1
Simon; 1
River; 1
Jayne; 1
Wash; 1
Kaylee; 1

Knocked out; Book and Mal by Early
Book; 3
Simon; 2
Kaylee; 1
Mal; 3
Wash; 1
Inara; 1
Zoe; 1
River; 1

Women good/men bad;
Early questions why men are physically stronger yet women have the children?

Kills; Mal kills Early (or does he? Put him down as a possible)
Mal; 17-plus one possible, Jubal Early
Zoe; 17-
Jayne; 16-
Wash; 2
River; 3
Happy high-class hookers in Space;
Early exclaims "I'll be a son of a whore"

Know the face?
Richard Brooks a familar face for all Law&Order fans (until his replacement by Mrs Gere and then Kate Lochley) and truly excellent here in a role where he really plays against type.

Alliance good or bad?;
Plenty about the future adventures of Jubal Early. Amongst the means for his survival are;
1) Venting air from his spacesuit to propel him back to his own ship
2) Boosting the power of his magnetic shoes in order to attract him back to it
3) Remote control of his own ship once Serenity is out of sensor range (it does seem to fly off under some form of direction)
4) Firing his gun to use the recoil to direct himself
5) Picked up by the blue gloves who are also trailing Serenity
Unfortunately some include him making good on his threats to Kaylee.
Missing scenes; or deleted scenes in this case
1. Scene where we see Zoe and Mal being picked up by the rescue ships after the battle of Serenity. Very graphic with the ground littered with corpses and Zoe in particular looking as though she's on her last legs. It's a powerful scene but if they had left it in it would have detracted from Mal's 'loss of faith' moment in the pilot.
2. Zoe tells Simon about the battle of Serenity in all it's gory detail, 500,000 killed in less than 2 months. What makes this more interesting is that she states that the Browncoats leaders left them to rot on the battlefield for a week, they resent the Independents High Command as well as the Alliance.
3. Well I guess I owe Alan Tudyk an apology, there IS an incestuous subtext between Simon and River (at least on River's part) he didn't just make it up out of the blue in his commentary for War Stories. It's all actually quite innocent, like a little girl playing at weddings and casting her father or brother as the groom. She accuses Saffron of being a thief, the crew think she means snaffling the food but she actually means more than that. Mal's speech to Saffron about standing up for herself shows his attitude towards women and gives her the idea of how to hoodwink him. This scene also explains why Summer Glau had no lines in the whole of Our Mrs Reynolds.
4. Inara announces she's leaving, excised because of the crazy order in which the show was shown so as to make more sense.

Firefly speak;
Weak tea=not good
Back birth=idiot
Companion=high class courtesan
Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)
Purple belly=officious bureaucrat
Ta-gow=Oh god!
Won-gwa-pee= to urinate or defecate
Wah=what the hell?
Mah song=quickly
Nu-shu-quong=nice going
Sheinou-niou=no good
Mei, mei=little sister
Moon brain=inbred?
Swa-shi=petty, small time
Roller=tank or armoured vehicle
Wetware=smuggled organs

Shot; Simon shot
Mal; 2-
Simon; 1-

Crew injured;
Mal gets a beating as does Simon again, Book get's a sore head. Inara get's a split lip from her pistol-whipping.
Reminds me off;
I guess I don't have to say Bobby Fett right down to his suit, gun and ship because Joss admits it in the commentary. Early threatening Kaylee reminds me of Glory and Tara in Tough Love.
Early's remark of " Maybe I've always been here?" is very The Shining.

Questions and observations;
I had thought it was stupid that Serenity had controls allowing someone to seal the crew into their cabins from the outside but it was pointed out if the ship was depressurised they would need to be able to seal off each compartment. Note Kayleigh is the only one not to have any hidden thoughts for River to read, she's totally open. Book's thoughts make you wonder if he was previously a cop or judge? As early observes, "That's not a Shepherd" Jayne appears to cook pancakes. Note when River has the gun it's Kaylee who backs away most having seen what she's capable off. The crew still don't know about Jayne's betrayal on Ariel.
Mal sure does love his double negatives when talking. Wash seems to delight in teasing Jayne although you'd wonder if he'd be quite so brave without Zoe to back him up? He also thinks telepathy is science fiction even when he's on a spaceship, very postmodern.
It appears people eat horses in the future. Early is the kind of interesting recurring villain the series sorely needs. Unfortunately this is the final ep.

Marks out of 10; 9/10, nice to see the series go out on a high
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