After Serenity
Me: “Hey, he didn’t wear the hat!”
Snook: “What hat?”
Me: “I don’t know. All these Firefly fans are knitting crazy yellow and orange hats with pompoms, and I think the big Jayne guy was supposed to wear one. But he didn’t.”

So, “Browncoats,” what was up with that? I loved the movie, by the way, and though I’m definitely a Joss Whedon fan, I never saw a single episode of the show. I guess that makes me one of those converts y’all were hoping to get with this movie! I did cry at the end, even though I didn’t have nearly the emotional connection you guys must have had. The Reavers scared the crap out of me. Jayne made me laugh. I kept waiting for River to kick some ass (and it was hugely satisfying when she did). Mal was suitably Han Soloish in a way nobody else has been since 1982. I just have a few (possibly spoilerish) questions for the fans…- Who was “Mr. Universe”? I got that he was some big hacker, but I didn’t get why he had such crazy powers and yet the Alliance hadn’t taken him down.

– Was Inora a priestess, a hoochie, or both?

– What happened at that battle of Serenity Whatever? I felt like it probably had thematic resonance with their last stand, but we of course missed out on it.

– Hey, Catboy, what was the big moment where Mal did something that you thought was shockingly inhumane? Since his character was new to me, I just sorta took him at face level…

And yeah, yeah, we’re totally going to go rent the DVDs. I just thought maybe you could point me to a little primer since I’m very stoked about getting into it at the moment…


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  1. The hat was only in one episode I believe, as a gift from his mom. It wasn’t a really prominent thing. I think everyone made/wore them because it isn’t exactly something everyone around town wears. It’s like being in a secret club… maybe?

  2. A friend of mine has one because he looks a bit like Jayne anyway. But the hat only appeared in The Message, if I’m not mistaken.

    Mr. Universe was introduced only in the movie. I have no idea what his story is. I think his powers are less of hacking and more of research, as we see when he figures out what’s going on with River’s trigger. I see him as a lot like the Logan/Eyes Only character on Dark Angel. I think the Alliance, though powerful, can only reach so far. They’ve done nothing to take care of the Reaver problem, and they have all sorts of rogue vessels like Serenity floating around unchecked.

    Inara is a Companion. It’s like a prostitute, but it’s a very respected profession. Requires extensive training, guild registration and so forth.

    The Battle of Serenity Valley was the Independents’ last stand against the Alliance. Mal and Zoe fought there, saw most of their comrades die, and were ordered by the Independents to lay down arms because the fighting was too hot for them to bring in air support. Mal doesn’t like to give in. You learn all about this at the very start of the first episode, so that’s not much of a spoiler. has nice little summaries of each episode.

  3. I think the reason the Alliance hadn’t taken out Mr Universe was that they didn’t actually care about his activities until he got tangled up in Mal & co’s plan to reveal [SPOILER]. One of the things that the series makes fairly clear is that whilst the Alliance lays claim to the entire system it doesn’t have much of a presence on the outer planets. Post-war, by and large the Alliance demands co-operation from each planet’s government as and when they need it, but mostly leaves law enforcement to the local authorities and concentrates on stamping out smuggling and other interplanetary offences. Mr Universe’s outpost was probably quite difficult to find, and he most likely hadn’t given the Alliance much reason to bother as long as he settled for finding and distributing “the best violence” to his customers and friends. (Obviously the RIAA didn’t make it off Earth As Was. Come to think of it, those explosions on the planet’s surface as the colonists headed out were probably the RIAA and the MPAA taking out evil file sharers…)

    What I would like to know is how the huge communications complex Mr Universe lived in and used was built, by whom and for what purpose.

  4. Good summaries you guys.

    If you like the Jayne Hat you absolutley must go searching for the Easter Egg on the DVDs. It’s hidden in the extras (go to the end of the extras and then use your left or right selection keys on your remote until the squiggle design thingie changes colour). It’s Adam Baldwin wearing the Jayne Hat and singing the entire Jayne song. It’s a crack up.

  5. What everyone else said about the hat. It’s gained cult status. πŸ™‚

    The Battle of Serenity was the breaking point in the big war between the Alliance and the outer-planet settlements who did not want to be under Alliance rule. You’ll see this in the first episode (“Serenity”, the original pilot) on the DVDs. The first 15 minutes or so may not make much sense when you’re watching, but you’ll pick it up later.

    And, OMG, weren’t River’s fight scenes just absolutely beautiful!!?!

  6. I’m so glad you liked Serenity! I hope you like the show as well, though I think you will. πŸ™‚

  7. Hey, Kris – i had to admit i had the exact same reaction Kaylee has when Mal suggested that they stick the bodies of the colonists on the ship. I totally understood why, but i just thought… no. Especially at the thought of would they have used —–‘s body? And then would that have served as a big “fuck you”?
    I am glad you enjoyed it. I wasn’t expecting Jayne to wear his hat, but i tell you, i am mighty glad it was keeping my ears warm all winter!

  8. New Question: Why do y’all keep calling him “Captain Tightpants”?

  9. No big mystery – the ladies like his tight pants. πŸ™‚

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