Friday, August 05, 2005

Take My Love, Take My Land...

Have you seen "Firefly" yet?

No? Why not?? Check this out: Firefly the complete series then come back here and we'll talk.

Okay, I'll write and you read.
Firefly was all about life on the frontier of space and the freedom of having a ship to call your own and only yourself to answer to. There were lots of parallels to the expansion of the west... including six shooters (the Alliance - the melding of the US and China into the last government on Earth - controls energy and more advance weapons) and characters including the preacher and town prostitute. There is a blend of action as well as snappy dialog and plot twists Joss Whedon is known for. What was even better was that no aliens are included in the series as humans can be alien enough when left on their own and away from most justice and organized systems. The crew and passengers of Firefly learn to work together finding their own strengths and more freedom then they’ve ever known. The world was well-drawn out, the characters were brilliantly crafted and acted (these actors were born for their roles) and it was so well-written that I bowed down in awe of Joss Whedon once again.
Heck, I even liked it more than "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and I loved Buffy. The show was so awesome that my wife even liked it and she is VERY fussy when it comes to sci-fi.
"Firefly" was lightning in a bottle and the executives at FOX were too stupid to realize what they had on their hands. They aired episodes out of order (the pilot was the last episode run) and they frequently pre-empted the show for Major League Baseball. After 12 aired episodes they cancelled it, leaving three episodes to be seen only on the DVD release of the series. A failed series, in FOX' eyes, that should only garner minimal attention from the DVD sales. It went on to sell 250,000 units.
You read that right; a quarter of a million DVD sets were sold for a TV series that FOX already cancelled.
Joss Whedon refused to let it die. FOX gave him the okay to shop the property around and he did so. Finally, someone at Universal decided (based on a rabid Internet fan base and nearly a million dollars in DVD sales) to greenlight a movie based on the series.
That movie is "Serenity" - premiering September 30th at a theatre near you. Please go see it.
For the most part I find television to be a wasteland. But, every once in a while, a show comes along that reminds me why I love well-written characters in colorful settings set among a well-thought out 'verse. In fact, for MY money, I think "Out of Gas" is one of the finest hours of episodic television ever. "Firefly" was an original concept in a glut of broadcast mediocrity and it deserves to be seen. If you don't want to buy a DVD series of a show you've never seen then you can watch it for free. Sci-fi Channel is rebroadcasting the episodes (in ORDER, God bless -em) on Friday nights at 7 PM.
Check it out and let me know what you think.


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