Tag Archives: Firefly

Firefly: The Limited Series?

I’m blaming True Detective for this one. For those who pirate everything HBO, or haven’t been paying attention, that show is America’s first foray into the type of TV programming they do on the BBC. A very short run series with high end stars, a single writer/director and a firm end date. True Detective also has the luck to have cast Matthew McConaughey right as he’s making a serious run at the Oscars for Dallas Buyers Club. We’re only four episodes into the 8 week run, but already reviewers are swooning.

When reviewers swoon, that means everyone wants to make one. Personally, I love the way the BBC does limited run series, mercilessly yanking shows at the height of popularity so they never become stale. I’d love to see American TV (especially network TV) get with this fad. Imagine if Smash had been forced to stick to a single eight week run? Or if Scandal was ten episodes a year?

But of course, since network TV is out of ideas, the first thing the Networks do is try to bring back old favorites in the new format. FOX is stepping up first with 24, and if that works, I wouldn’t be surprised to see others come back this way. Will NBC bring back The West Wing for a 2016 liberal fantasy? (It’s been 8 years since the President Obama of their world–President Santos–took office.)

And that’s where the story of  former Firefly writer and producer Tim Minear piping up and suggesting “a limited series Firefly run” came from.

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Natural Born Reviewers | Firefly: The Board Game

Firefly board game titleWe at NBR are big Whedon fans, and so are Liamfer’s parents. (They had a car named Buffy and a boat named Serenity!) When his sister’s family got him “Firefly: The Game” for Christmas, we knew they would want to try it out with us.

“Firefly is a good design. People don’t appreciate the substance of things. Objects in space. People miss out on what’s solid.” – Jubal Early (Firefly episode “Objects in Space”)

The game’s design is intricate and the painstaking accuracy is impressive. However the rulebook and some of the gameplay are annoyingly obtuse. The basic setup is that each player (for a maximum of four players) starts with a Firefly class ship and a captain. You have your obvious choice of Serenity and Mal, but others as well. Each character you encounter in the game is represented by a card and all have slightly different stats. You will need combinations of diplomacy skills, tech skills, and fighting prowess to accomplish jobs and missions in the game, necessitating a well-rounded crew.

Firefly board game ship card & pieceOff the bat you will notice the great graphics and overall stylishness. The game designers’ fanboy/girl reverence is clear in the level of shiny detail in the fake money (which is quite beautiful!), the breadth of show references and direct quotes, and the crisp, high-color photo stills of all the characters and objects. The level of design is inspired.

Despite the flaws, we had a lot of fun playing. Let’s tour this game ‘verse!

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So About Those Jayne Hats…

Have you heard about the Jayne Hat saga?

We should catch you up, in case you are not a Browncoat. See, there was once this show called Firefly, which could have been really popular, had FOX execs not been utter morons. Instead it had 14 episodes, some of which never made it to air. It became a cult classic, as any sci fi show that can be easily consumed in a day, and was not given enough time to go off the original concept rails, is wont to do.

In this show, there was a character, the Man Called Jayne. Jayne Cobb was a shoot first, grump about the blood stains that asshole left behind later kinda dude. But in one episode–one of those that never made it to air, in fact–his Ma sent him a hat. A very silly, very bright hat. The sort of hat that a man who is just that confident about his baddassitude would have no problem wearing. After all, if you laughed at it, he’d just shoot you dead.

The perfect item, in fact, for cult fans to make for themselves and wear as a easy to recognize symbol of their fandom. And boy howdy, do they ever. You can see a few wearing them here, as they mix their love of Jayne Cobb, with their love of Jane Austen.

But as with all things that can be monetized, after 10 years, it was suddenly noticed by those who aim to part nerds from their money that this was an item that had been overlooked. Instead independant Etsy sellers were the ones making all the money. And FOX likes money.

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