Copied from my journal from September 20th 2002.
Firefly, my new replacement for Buffy, is not Whedon’s best work. To be honest it was confusing, jumbled, and how the hell did the chick get out of the box? I feel like I missed something. Is this even the first episode? I am sure I didn’t miss one… but, it feels wrong somehow. The only redeemable part is when this dude gets kicked into the atmospheric engine. (Though oddly this doesn’t seem to hurt the engine at all.) Other than that the show is a confusing wash of characters and actors I don’t know why I should care about. I kind of like Kaylee. And River (the girl in the box) is delightfully weird. Ah well. I suppose I will keep watching it if Ben does. Also I hate the theme song.
I cannot even begin to describe the hilarity of my review of Train Job, the first episode aired on TV for Firefly. To be fair, it was in fact a replacement episode written in a weekend to replace Serenity, the true first episode. After weeks of commercials showing the girl in the box I was curious about her and here came the first episode and she isn’t in the box. I was less than impressed. If not for a dearth of other programming to watch during my college time I am sure I would not have continued. But there wasn’t anything better to do on a Friday night in a dry county so I kept watching. As each episode progressed I came to care for the characters and truly enjoy the show. Right about the time I felt it was good enough to encourage my family and friends to watch it, it was canceled.
I have trouble letting go. I started participating in letter writing campaigns and massive Internet petitions. Once the show came out on DVD, I purchased it on day one, then proceeded to purchase a half dozen other copies for friends and my mother. No one I convinced to watch Firefly thought it was a bad show and many of them became fans just like I was. About this time Universal was rumored to be thinking of making a movie. It was gas to the fire of my fandom. I emailed Universal insisting that if they made a Firefly movie, not only would I see it in theatres at least 3 times, but I would also buy the DVD the day it came out in stores. I am pleased to say I kept both promises.
I was quite lucky. Universal did 3 rounds of pre-screenings of Serenity. The third round included a showing in my hometown. I missed the ticket sales, but a Firefly fan in AL had purchased tickets he could no longer use and I got them. My mother, brother and I showed up for the 10pm showing at 6pm, and started the line for the movie. Needless to say, we were *quite* excited. We had even made t-shirts, with the Serenity logo on the front and River quotes on the back. It was June 23, and Joss Whedon’s birthday, so we all signed one of those huge cards to send to him.
That fall when the movie came out I went to a midnight screening. And then again the next day. And then again the next weekend. I bought the shirt Hot Topic sold. I bought everything with Firefly on it.
Once it came out on DVD I not only bought it, but I also purchased the UMD copy, and the HDDVD versions, despite not having either player. I bought the toys, I bought the shirts, I bought the posters. I tried to vote with my wallet as loudly as I could. I loved Firefly and desperately wanted it back.
To this day I buy shiny new Firefly things that come out. I buy the shirts, books, comics, figures, ornaments… I buy each new version of the DVDs. Even the bluray ones, without having a bluray player.
While in grad school I built a level in Quake 4 that was a modified Serenity. The sheer number of phone interviews I have gotten off of that one piece of work is amazing. The number of times Serenity and Firefly come up in interviews and at work is unbelievable.
I love Firefly, and believe it may in fact be Joss’ greatest work.