One of the saddest days of my life was when I read the news that my most beloved show was going to be canceled. That show was Firefly, and it is was brilliant; unequivocally and absolutely ahead of its time. Joss Whedon of recent Avengers fame was the mind behind this sci-fi Western masterpiece, and I believe that it is one of the greatest shows of all time.
So let's go back a bit. In 2002, just as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, another of Whedon's well-known shows, was wrapping up, he created a story that IMDb described thusly:
Five hundred years in the future, a renegade crew aboard a small spacecraft tries to survive as they travel the unknown parts of the galaxy and evade warring factions as well as authority agents out to get them.
Now, if you've never seen Firefly, please stop reading this article and open Netflix or buy the box set Blu-ray here. Seriously, I'll wait — go ahead.
OK, now that you've finished binge-watching Firefly, hopefully you're just as in love with the characters and story as I am. But if you care as much as I do, you're probably also disappointed that you only had 14 episodes to enjoy.
Yet even with the disappointment of Firefly only lasting a single season, the truth is that Whedon created something that was indeed magical.
The Characters Were Unique
One thing can be said for sure about Firefly — the characters were well defined and had beautiful idiosyncrasies. There was Captain Mal, who would do anything for his crew yet often puts them in harm's way. And then there was the troubled science experiment gone wrong, who had the power to defeat any opponent but truly just wants to find peace. And the faithful pilot who flies headfirst into danger but would rather avoid all conflict. Sometimes the characters fall into generic categories, but when you really look at them, you see the things that make them stand out.
The Story Was Funny And Different
For a show about a group of renegades that operate on the fringes of the galaxy, you would think that it would simply follow the standard tropes of a sci-fi soap opera: space travel, exploration and alien races. Although it only lasted one season, Firefly was building a story that was bound to be truly epic. There were so many hints through the 14 eps that led fans to imagine something much bigger.
The Cast Was Stellar
How can you go wrong with a cast composed of Nathan Fillion, Alan Tudyk, Jewel Staite, Morena Baccarin, Gina Torres, Ron Glass and Adam Baldwin? Each actor brought an uncommon portrayal of the character they were playing, and they clearly loved their respective roles. When you have a talented team breathing life into their characters, you're bound to see magic.
It Combined Genres
In a way that only the brilliant mind of Whedon could, he mashed together classic Western elements with that of sci-fi. Rarely would we see such disparate genres together, but Firefly offered just the right balance to make for a highly watchable show. Normally, when you think of outer space, you don’t necessarily think of dusters and gunfights, but that’s what we had in Firefly. We met the crew of the Serenity in several saloons as well as racing across planets in the midst of a gunfight. The genres mesh wonderfully when you watch the show.
Now, I know that this list could go on forever and ever, but for now we will leave it at these four reasons. And luckily for fans of Firefly, Whedon gave us Serenity, the film follow-up.
What other reasons do you love Firefly? Make sure to comment below and let's all imagine how great the show could have been had continued for multiple seasons!