Ain’t It Cool News: New Firefly Intel


Firefly 1.05 FAQ

What is Firefly again?

The new sci-fi starship series created by “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” mastermind Joss Whedon. It debuts on theFox netowrk this autumn.

And what’s the point of this post?

We’ve gotten our hands on a good portion of the show’s “second pilot,” we have a much keener idea about the direction the show is taking, and we’re here to share.

Does “Firefly” look good?

Yeah! Based on what we’ve read so far, it’s funny, dramatic, smart and yet not at all very “Buffy”-like! Along with the WB’s “Gotham City adventure “Birds of Preym” “Firefly” is surely one of the most anticiapted TV projects headed our way this fall.

What does Herc mean by “second pilot”?

Whedon wrote and directed a two-hour “Firefly” pilot titled “Serenity.” Coax critic “Princess X” was quite taken with the pilot script, but at least one Fox exec reportedly didn’t share the love. Word is the pilot was found lacking in action and comedy areas – and Fox came super-close to renewing “Dark Angel” for Friday nights and postponing “Firefly” till midseason. Mere hours before Fox had to officially announce its fall 2002 schedule to the advertising community and the world at large, Whedon turned in a new hourlong script. Fox liked it. “Dark Angel” got cancelled. “Firefly” debuts in September (Could somebody kindly forwards us a copy of that original “Firefly” pilot already??)

Hey! The original 1966 “Star Trek” had two pilots too! Do the two “Firefly” pilots feature different casts?

No. Both “Firefly” pilots feature the same cast. In fact, the “second pilot” probably doesn’t really qualify as a pilot at all; Whedon essentially just scripted the show’s second episode – with more comedy and action. And though this “second pilot” now looks likely to air first, Fox says it does plan to air the first, two-hour pilot at some point during the season, perhaps as a “special event” origin story. Or something.

How else does this starship show differ from the various and sundry “Star Trek” projects?

For one thing, the galaxy’s ruling government, dubbed “The Alliance,” is a lot more like the empire from “Star Wars” than the federation in “Star Trek.” The other big difference is the heroes are a bunch of damn criminals.

The main characters are criminals?

Like the Corleones and the Sopranos, the crew of the Serenity indulge some legitimate activities – commercial transport among them – but in the two-hour pilot they’re seen stealing gold from a derelict ship, and in the “second pilot” the crew is contracted by a fearsome and powerful mobster named Adelei Niska to pull a train robbery!

Do they actually pull off that train robbery?

They do! Though they’re not too excited once they learn what they’ve stolen.

Is the “Firefly” captain more like Kirk or Pickard?

He’s more like a deep-space Dirty Harry. Remember during the second season of “Angel,” when the character got all cranky, quit Angel Investigations, let vampires dine on Wolfram and Hart staffers, and set Darla and Drusilla ablaze? That guy may remind some of “Firefly’s” battle-scarred captain, Malcolm Reynolds.

What are the aliens like?

There are no aliens. In the “Firefly” universe, mankind has scoured the galaxy but without stumbling across ant other sentient lifeforms.

No aliens? How far in the future is this thing set?

400 years.

Why is the ship called “Serenity”?

Its captain and first officers were once rebels fighting against the Alliance in the incredibly long and bloody “Battle of Serenity” – which ultimately left nearly half a million dead. “Once you’ve been in Serenity, you never leave,” the first officer explains to the ship’s new doctor. “You just learn to live there.”

How is “Firefly” similar to “Star Trek”?

The ship’s regulars include a captain, a first officer, an engineer, a doctor, a pilot, and even a surly, hulking security guy played by Adam “Animal Mother” Baldwin. But it also has three regular characters who in now way fit any traditional “Trek” crew slot.

Who are these decidedly un-“Trek”-ian regulars?

All three carry mysteries that remain unresolved at the end of the “second pilot”:

  • BOOK, a troubled holy man and martial artist. Think “Kung Fu” protagonist Kwai Chang Caine, if Caine lived 500 years later as a middle-aged black man;
  • INARA, a superhot high-end professional “companion” whose continued presence about the Serenity is a bit of a puzzlement; and
  • RIVER, the subject of a top-secret government experiment who likely has psychic superpowers. She was rescued by her brother, the Serenity’s new doctor, and continues to be coveted by scary and oddly-garbed agents of the Alliance.

Psychic superpowers?

Rover may remind viewers a bit of “Minority Report’s” soggy psychic Agatha, since a) she’s been liberated from a government facility, and b) she seems to routinely drift in and out of lucidity and c) she seems to have those psychic superpowers.

Is the Alliance the series’ “big bad”?

Sure looks like it. Our guess is the Alliance will serve as “Firefly’s” Wolfram and Hart, an ongoing institutional menace designed to weave in and out of storylines for as long as “Firefly” lasts. It also seems not unlikely that we’ll see more of the two-hour pilot’s “reavers,” brutal, radioactive pirate-types who enjoy raping captured women until they’re dead. Also, the “second pilot’s” cheif mobster, Niskal, does not strike one as a forgiving individual, so we’d be pretty surprised if he disappeared completely.

To see what the ship’s hooker looks like in costume, and other nift “Fireflty”-related material, visit the show’s just launched official Web site here.

Original article at Ain’t it Cool

Author: Cider

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