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Serenity! - Mo's Journal
September 8th, 2008
11:05 am

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Serenity!
I finally saw it this past weekend (HBO on Demand) and just loved it, so I thought I'd squee a bit here. I only wish I had seen it on a big screen.

I'd never seen Firefly and I think it must be hard to make a movie that appeals to the fans of the original as well as the uninitiated. It's something I think Bryan Singer did really well with the first X-Men movie. I don't know how Serenity played with Firefly fen (I want to find out) but I thought it was great as a newbie. For the first 15 minutes to half an hour I had a hard time understanding what was going on, but it wasn't a feeling of "I'm at sea - when is this going to end?" but rather "Oh this is exciting and cool and fun - I wish I understood more than half of it." There was plenty of excitement and wit to keep me going, and as the movie went on, the characters and relationships became clearer.

That's what really appealed to me about Serenity - the interesting characters and relationships. I love the setting and the Star Wars-ish plot (not derivative, just homage to the same kind of films) but it's really the characters that make me want more more more. I did spot one plot flaw but wasn't particularly bothered by it. And now I want to see the TV show! Oh, and get an appropriate icon.

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[User Picture]
From:executrix
Date:September 8th, 2008 04:12 pm (UTC)
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I certainly hope *everybody* will see the series (which I like much better than the movie, so you get to save the best for last!). But you didn't need HBO on Demand, I gave you a copy of the movie as a hostess gift ages ago.
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From:mofic
Date:September 8th, 2008 04:37 pm (UTC)
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You did? Why don't I remember that? And where is it? Not that I really expect you to have answers to the last two questions.
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From:executrix
Date:September 8th, 2008 04:54 pm (UTC)
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Maybe one of the kids put it in zir individual media collection?

BTW if you don't mind the small screen, all of the Firefly episodes are available at hulu.com.
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From:barb_krasnoff
Date:September 8th, 2008 05:42 pm (UTC)
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I was a great fan of the series; it wasn't perfect, but it came pretty damn close. With a couple of exceptions, most of the episodes were excellent, and it helps to know a bit more about the backgrounds of the characters.

I liked the move as well, although I was a bit upset about what happens to a couple of the characters in it.
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From:mofic
Date:September 8th, 2008 10:27 pm (UTC)
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Oh Wash was my favorite! I was truly broken-hearted.

I'm going to get myself the DVD set of the tv show for my birthday.
From:fantasyenabler
Date:September 9th, 2008 12:00 am (UTC)
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It's exremely good, isn't it? I didn't see the show in its original form, but a friend of mine loaned me the DVDs back in 2005 and got me hooked just in time for the movie. Those characters pop so beautifully. I really hate that this franchise was as short-lived as it was. I can only imagine how wonderful it would have been to have had another two to three seasons of this show.
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From:mofic
Date:September 9th, 2008 01:28 am (UTC)
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OT1H I sympathise. OTOH it's knowing it's just a few episodes that makes this feel like something I really can manage to watch.
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From:wneleh
Date:September 9th, 2008 12:09 am (UTC)
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And now I want to see the TV show!

And you take the first, tentative steps into TV show fandom. Bwahahahah! We'll have you yet.

- Helen
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From:mofic
Date:September 9th, 2008 01:29 am (UTC)
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First of all, Bwahahaha is a general belly laugh. I think what you mean to say is "mwahaha" which is an evil laugh.

Secondly, as I said above, I think that it being so few episodes makes it much more manageable.
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From:wneleh
Date:September 9th, 2008 09:58 am (UTC)
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You're right, much more with the mwhahaha.

I'd be curious to know what you think of Firefly. We watched it as a family a couple of months ago, and really enjoyed it.

- Helen

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From:fyredancer
Date:September 9th, 2008 12:51 am (UTC)
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As a Firefly fan, I really enjoyed the movie.

But what happened to Wash totally broke my heart. Damn you, Joss Whedon!
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From:mofic
Date:September 9th, 2008 01:30 am (UTC)
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But what happened to Wash totally broke my heart.

Oh me, too, as I said upstream. But I wouldn't curse him. It was really effective and it's the kind of thing you can do when you don't need to have the character there next week...
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From:fyredancer
Date:September 9th, 2008 01:44 am (UTC)
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...it's the kind of thing you can do when you don't need to have the character there next week.

That's EXACTLY why I got mad! I felt like it was Joss's way of "going out with a bang." I mean, it did work story-wise, which is why I'm still willing to watch the movie over and over, but it just... really upset me. There had already been so much death that Wash's sudden death seemed gratuitous. Wash and Zoe's marriage was one of the best things about Firefly, IMO, and killing Wash felt so... final. As though there would never be any more Firefly universe stories after Serenity, because one of the most functional and beautiful (and entertaining) relationships was gone.

This is just my personal opinion but I think out of all of the cast, Wash was the one most identifiable with Joss himself. And killing Wash in Serenity was like saying, this really is over. I got to revisit this to make my Big Damned Movie, but this is the end. It was no secret that Joss was really passionate about Firefly and having it crippled, then cancelled by network executives really hurt him.
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From:hitchhiker
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:14 am (UTC)
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yeah, what got me was how random it all was. there was no real reason for him to die when he did.
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From:fyredancer
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:22 am (UTC)
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That was the other part of why I got mad. I mean, yes, random death happens and it's awful, but...what? I STILL can't figure out exactly how/what killed him after they landed and I've seen the movie several times. It was beyond senseless.
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From:sabra_n
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:59 am (UTC)
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See also: Dr. Horrible, except that had shades of Women in Refrigerators, too. I hate to be a party pooper, so I won't go into details, but I didn't love Serenity or Firefly, though heaven knows I wanted to.

Some great fic has come out of the FF fandom, though.
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From:mofic
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:33 pm (UTC)
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Two questions:

1. What is Dr. Horrible?
2. Can you recommend some Firefly fic?
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From:sabra_n
Date:September 9th, 2008 09:30 pm (UTC)
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Dr. Horrible's Singing Blog is...what it sounds like. It was a Joss Whedon project starring Neil Patrick Harris as a wannabe evil mad scientist who sings and keeps the titular blog and Nathan Fillion (who played Mal on Firefly) as Captain Hammer, his asshole superhero nemesis. It "aired" in the internet a month or so back, and was actually pretty fun, albeit sexist, until that abhorrent ending. Harris and Fillion are just geniuses and hysterically funny. It's the writing that ended up being a letdown for me, but plenty of people disagree.

I think you can watch it for free on Hulu now, but I'd jump on that ASAP, since they intend to release a DVD at some point.
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From:sabra_n
Date:September 9th, 2008 09:32 pm (UTC)
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Oh, and Firefly fic...the stuff I can think of offhand is mostly crossovers with other fandoms, but I do recall that 2ndary_author has some really great stories on LJ.
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From:hitchhiker
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:13 am (UTC)
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i worked my way through firefly first (thanks to mactavish), then saw serenity. excellent movie, though i thought the tv series was even better. i could've screamed and thrown things at the television when they did the whole "ship sneaking through a blockade of reavers" scene - seriously, people, space is *big*. aargh! definitely more character- than science-driven sci-fi, but very very well written.
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From:mofic
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:37 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, that was a little unlikely, but exciting if you can manage to suspend disbelief. The plot hole I felt they should have plugged was that the people on Miranda supposedly died because they lost all will to do anything - it says they didn't eat, didn't work, didn't breed, etc. But the dead people weren't starved and weren't in bed - they appeared to have been struck down in the midst of what they were doing, including working. That's why the Serenity crew originally hypothesized a toxic agent. It seemed like they changed what the reason for the deaths was mid-way. I loved the idea of the drug that's supposed to pacify them going bad that way - making some of them passive enough to die and turning others into Reavers. Very evocative. But they should have redone the scenes on Miranda to go with that.
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From:talktooloose
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:15 pm (UTC)
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We watched half the series. It started out with a bang and then, I feel, became underwritten and two Star Trek. I should watch the last episodes. I loved the dynamic, the characters, the ship, the politics.

The movie was wonderful. I love the idea that attempts to control the population into passivity led to the creation of hyper violence.
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From:mofic
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:38 pm (UTC)
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I love the idea that attempts to control the population into passivity led to the creation of hyper violence.

I just said something similar above!

How was Portugal? Or did you do a write up? I'm still trying to catch up.

[User Picture]
From:talktooloose
Date:September 9th, 2008 02:40 pm (UTC)
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me too. I haven't posted. I am having trouble posting lately.
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