Post contains no spoilers.
I'm reading the Firefly comics. I've got the three hardcover compilations (thank you people who actually listened to my xmas requests, yes I do prefer this to a blender). The first one has a bit at the back:
"The following section contains the pre-predoduction memo A Brief History of the Universe Circa 2515 A.D.
written by Joss Whedon for use during the Serenity motion picture."
It's an interesting background of Earth-that-was and what happened next, much of which is gleaned by paying close attention to the show but nice to read it all in one place. This bit seems just utterly ridiculous: "Prostitution as we understand it had long since been abolished by the legalization and strict federal legislation of the sex trade. "Companion" houses were set up throughout the central planets." Oh really. So prostitution has been wiped out because everyone is happy for it to have been replaced with rich people only high class sex workers?! Like everyone can afford this? Like this doesn't open up a huge market for non-regulated, non-elitist sex trade where you don't have to worry because no fancy dress Companion would ever in her right mind choose you?
Whedon is an a weirdo. It's not like he's painted some evolved human picture ala TNG either, there is no reason given the people we see to think that prostitution would not have a demand.
Talking about the Companions he says.. "they lived not unlike nuns.."
This guy is really quite into his whore Madonnas.
Now this does apply to the core planets which as we saw in Ariel are highly regulated places run by Alliance and not dirtballs like the outer rim. But I still can't see this wiping out prostitution no matter how regulated life is, especially when you dangle the Companion carrot which doesn't even have any moral qualms attached to it in front of everyone's face. Here is something YOU WANT and it is highly respected, it's wonderful really.. but you suck so you can't have it.
Now we do see
OF course all that regulation and the nunnery
does shed some light on how Inara may have felt suffocated and prefers her life on Serenity.
And the hardcover comic compilations are really gorgeous. Very nice artwork, extra portraits throughout. A treat.