First off, this post contains major gorram spoilers for both the television show Firefly and the movie Serenity. If you have not seen either, then why not?! I did not know there was a place where the signal didn’t reach! Hop to it! And then come back for some very shiny news! Or, just continue on and have things spoiled for you. Not much I can do to stop you….
Just remember, you’ve been warned about the spoilers!
Later this year, Boom Studios is releasing a new graphic novel to continue their collection of Firefly stories. The new story arc will focus on one character in particular and carry the story with flashbacks, never-before-seen adventures of the Firefly era, and potentially a little future-telling. Which fan favorite will the story focus on? Well, a hint is in the name: Firefly: Watch How I Soar.
Yes, Hoban “Wash” Washburne is getting his very own story! Thanks to io9, we know that Firefly: Watch How I Soar will pick up right at that pivotal moment in Serenity, you know the one, and continue Wash’s story through flashbacks. We will reportedly get to see Wash’s life before Zoë and his stint aboard Serenity, we’ll get to see Firefly era adventures that weren’t included in the television show, and we’ll get to see Wash’s mysteriously hinted at non-corporeal reunion with someone. Who? We’ll have to wait for November to see.
Keep reading below for a little refresher on Firefly, Serenity, and Wash’s story as we know it, and to see the amazing cover (by Miguel Mercado) for Firefly: Watch How I Soar. The coming graphic novel will be written by Ethan Young with art by Jorge Corona.
Firefly: A Quick Run Down
Back in 2002, Joss Whedon created a little futuristic western drama set in space. Set 500 years in our future, Whedon imagined a time when human expansion filled the galaxy, corporations owned the government, and a little rebellion for independence was fought valiantly, though it fell to the mightier power of the Alliance. The events of Firefly take place after that failed uprising and follows Captain Malcolm “Mal” Reynolds (Nathan Fillion) and his crew of misfits. Mal was a Browncoat, one of the rebels, and his first officer is Zoë Alleyne Washburne (Gina Torres), a fellow Browncoat and his best friend through the war. Together, they lead the ragtag crew of the Serenity, a firefly class cargo ship. The ship itself is a piece of junk that is lovingly cared for by Kaylee Frye (Jewel Staite) and piloted by Wash (Alan Tudyk), Zoë’s husband. Jayne Cobb (Adam Baldwin) is the mercenary muscle that joined up for a better cut of whatever they rake in, leaving his allegiance in question quite often. Inara Serra (Morena Baccarin) is a Companion renting out one of the shuttles aboard Serenity, offering her status to aid the crew gain acceptance and appear as more than just a scavenging ship.
From time to time, Serenity deals with passengers, ferrying them wherever they need to go, which is how Dr. Simon Tam (Sean Maher), his sister River Tam (Summer Glau), and holy man Shepherd Derrial Book (Ron Glass) came aboard. Throughout the show, the three become like family and join the crew, earning their keep in each their own ways. Battle wounds need tending, bad guys need a beat down, and safe, emergency passage aboard an Alliance medical ship may be needed at least once. There’s also the fact that Kaylee and Simon have chemistry….
Serenity: A Much Needed Film
But all of the good stuff was cut short after less than one season. Fox pulled the plug on the show after airing only 11 of the 14 episodes, out of order at that, using the show’s low ratings as the reason. However, the show had gained cult status and a well deserved cult following, and petitions were filed and eventually, in 2005, the film Serenity was released. Serenity provides a little more backstory on River and Simon, using River’s life pre-Firefly as a driving plot point.
The film has its ups and downs, providing the light comedy fans loved about Firefly, while also delving into the heftier topic of government oversight; How far is too far when trying to keep a population complacent and docile to prevent another rebellion? Even just a little nudge can have catastrophic consequences. Mal and his crew discover a dirty little secret of the Alliance while helping River heal from her own trauma. They manage to get the word out, exposing the government cover up, all the while offering fans some much needed closure, though many argue more stories can still be told.
All Good Things Must End
Serenity also had the most heartbreaking death ever witnessed. Wash successfully maneuvers Serenity through a free fall crash, landing the ship in a sort-of-glide with minimal injuries on board. As silence takes hold following a lengthy sequence of EM bursts, weapons fire, and screeching metal-on-metal, relief begins to settle over the crew and fans alike – until a Reaver spear shoots through the front of the ship and impales Wash. Devastation is the only word for this unexpected turn of events.
A Leaf On The Wind
The movie continues on, with Zoë rallying and dropping back into war-time mode to complete the mission. But for Wash, his story has ended.
Or has it?
Firefly: Watch How I Soar will fly into your hands this November. Do you think your heart is ready to see Wash’s final moments play out in print?