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January 31, 2006

Why was "Firefly" really cancelled?

Hank Parnell nicely sums up the reasons "Firefly" was so good ... and why it had to be cancelled.

Maybe he's paranoid. On the other hand, I can buy his argument that "Firefly" had to die because it was too focused on personal responsibility and justice, too insistent that government was the bad guy, and, ultimately, too Southern.

We've been borrowing our copy. I think I'll go shopping and give Joss Whedon the money he deserves.

Hat tip to Chris

Posted by lynx at January 31, 2006 9:59 AM

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I'm sad I didn't get into it when it was on. My brother liked it, and forced me to watch an episode (it was on when I was at his house), but it was the episode where they meet the reavers... and, frankly, without even knowing who anyone was, it was *not* the best way to be introduced to the show. :D

I just watched the last episode last night. Gosh that was a weird and fun show.

Posted by: silvermine at January 31, 2006 5:03 PM

I'm really not convinced; the simplest answer is usually correct. FOX has a track record for finding good sci-fi and not knowing what to do with it that predates Firefly. I just think they are clueless when it comes the genre. They don't seem to understand that good sci-fi is heavily dependant on character development, and that takes time. Sci-fi is notorious for the time it takes to build an audience. They wanted quick success and believed Whedon's name would be enough to draw the Buffy audience. When it wasn't materializing right away, they gave up. My only real question is why show the episodes so far out of order?

In the end, though, for FOX (or any network), it's all about money. If Firefly was making them money, it would have survived.

I think giving Joss your money is a good idea on two fronts. First, you could return your copy to its owner, who I'm sure would be happy. ;-) Second, Instapundit linked to an article not long ago by one of the Firefly production guys who said Joss would like to continue the Firefly universe in some form or other. He's apparently hoping for really strong DVD sales of Serenity to show that the same interest is there that existed to make the movie in the first place.

Posted by: Brian at January 31, 2006 8:00 PM

We've been renting this from netflix and we just adore it. After the first episode, I put it on my Amazon wishlist.

Posted by: Shawna at January 31, 2006 10:35 PM

Now that there article was a real thought-provoker. Personally, I never did get the Civil war references, but then again I'm not American. I'm intrigued by the whole notion of the 'rule of honour'. That's the first time I'd read it put that way and I can't seem to get it out of my head.

As Pooh would say, "Think, think, think."

Posted by: Poppins at February 1, 2006 11:31 AM

In a nutshell, he's right. The Civil War was about states' rights. To say it was about slavery is a gross simplification and misrepresentation. If you have any questions about those references, fire away.

Brian, he may be paranoid and over-thinking the situation, but I *like* his explanation.

Silvermine ... no, that is not the episode I'd let anyone start with.

Posted by: MamaLynx [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 1, 2006 4:19 PM

I agree totally that honor is important. The problem with honor is where you draw the line. There are an obscene number of women and girls murdered every year under the heading "honor killings". In some countries their murder is perfectly legal as long as the murderer can squawk, "My honor was at stake!"

Posted by: Lioness at February 1, 2006 4:33 PM

That was an interesting article. Although I think that Brian is more like right than Mr. Parnell on the reason for the cancellation.

One thing that struck me was how his line about the rule of honor was so close to the rule laid down by Captain Jack Sparrow:

This thing I can do and live with myself; this thing I can't.
The only rules that really matter are these: what a man can do and what a man can't do.

As I think on it now, there are plenty of parallels in the honor theme between Pirates and Firefly.

Posted by: Butch Howard at February 2, 2006 3:09 PM

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