Premiered: Sep. 20, 2002
Status: Ended Jul. 28, 2003
FOX TV Network
– sci-fi  – adventure
– western  – drama


Firefly is set five hundred years from today in a new planetary system after humanity abandons “Earth That Was”. Under the leadership of Malcolm Reynolds, a renegade who fought against the new unified central government (the “Alliance”), the crew of the Firefly-class vessel Serenity struggles to survive any way they can. They fly between the border planets to keep away from the Alliance and below its radar.

The theme lyrics to Firefly gives a good insite into the show. Check it out below.

“Take my love, take my land, take me where I cannot stand. I don’t care I’m still free, you can’t take the sky from me. Take me out to the black, tell them I ain’t coming back. Burn the land and boil the sea, you can’t take the sky from me……There’s no place I can be since I found Serenity, you… can’t take the sky from me.”

Firefly TV SeriesEach of the crew members has a special role: Malcolm Reynolds holds the duty of Captain – he is a defeated soldier who opposed the unification of the planets by the Alliance to no avail. He strives to keep all his crew members on task and Serenity flying safely, while trying to make a living and do the right thing…in his rather flexible moral framework. Zoe (aka The Soldier) is extremely loyal to Reynolds as she served with him during the war and owes her life to him. Zoe has the strength and experience to take command of the ship, if necessary. Wash is Serenity’s pilot (and Zoe’s husband) – unassuming, self-deprecating, and calm with a sense of humor. Kaylee is the ship’s mechanic – an experienced engineer who keeps Serenity flying. Inara is a ‘Registered Companion,’ most easily described as a high-priced courtesan or geisha. She is also the person with the highest social standing on the ship and acts as the crew’s Ambassador. Jayne is the muscle of the crew. A tough, uncultured Mercenary, unpleasant and offensively direct, but loyal to those on his crew…usually. The newcomers are: Simon Tam is the Doctor on Serenity and comes from a wealthy family and has a privileged upbringing. He has spent his life savings and future to save his sister, River. River (aka The Fugitive) was experimented on by the government. Her psychic visions (a result of the experiments) are taken at first as babble by the crew but they slowly come to realize that there’s more going on than what shows on the surface. Book or “The Shepherd,” is a wise minister who knows far more about military matters and battle tactics than a man of the cloth should, and his past is shrouded in mystery.

This series was described as a “science fiction western” but is different from other space-based shows as it features no aliens. Despite receiving critical acclaim and a very positive reaction from Whedon fans, FOX had trouble with Firefly from the start. The network didn’t like the western concept of the show, and asked Whedon to write a new pilot episode that featured more action (The Train Job). The order in which the episodes were meant to air was changed. The show was put on hiatus at mid-season and cancelled shortly thereafter. Only thirteen episodes were filmed, of which just ten made it on the air, the last shown being the original two-hour pilot. (For stations and individuals seeking the intended air order of the series as specified by creator Joss Whedon, as opposed to the order Fox originally aired them, see here )

Luckily, Firefly has found a permanent afterlife in an amazing DVD box set featuring the complete series plus several commentaries and special features. Firefly has also since aired in many countries around the world, contributing to its still-growing fanbase. Most exciting of all, Firefly went on to the big screen in a movie called Serenity!

Firefly Complete DVD Set

Firefly Cast and Characters

Captain Malcolm 'Mal' Reynoldsplayed by Nathan FillionCaptain Malcolm ‘Mal’ Reynolds
played by Nathan Fillion
Zoe Washburneplayed by Gina TorresZoe Washburne
played by Gina Torres
Inara Serraplayed by Morena BaccarinInara Serra
played by Morena Baccarin
Jayne Cobbplayed by Adam BaldwinJayne Cobb
played by Adam Baldwin
River Tamplayed by Summer GlauRiver Tam
played by Summer Glau
Kaylee Fryeplayed by Jewel StaiteKaylee Frye
played by Jewel Staite
Hoban 'Wash' Washburneplayed by Alan TudykHoban ‘Wash’ Washburne
played by Alan Tudyk
Dr. Simon Tamplayed by Sean MaherDr. Simon Tam
played by Sean Maher
Shepherd Bookplayed by Ron GlassShepherd Book
played by Ron Glass



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