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October 4, 2015

Firefly: Out of Gas

by Keith McDuffee, posted Jul 21st 2006 1:35PM
firefly serenity out of gas
(S01E05) I'm glad the creators of Firefly were able to get this episode created and aired before the end of the series. Many times these "how they all met" episodes are saved for later seasons, though thankfully we got to see it early.

I'd have a hard time deciding which one of the crew had the most surprising introduction to the ship. Wash looks like a reject from the 70's, complete with gnarly 'stache and floral pattern shirt. Kaylee takes the engineer job from the man she was bedding in the engine room, Bester (who knew she was so ... promiscuous?) Jayne gets a job on the ship by holding up Mal and Zoe. And Inara ... well, her story's not all that surprising.The introduction to Serenity herself shows how special this ship is to Mal and why he ultimately decided to stay behind with her. If there was ever a look of love at first sight in Mal's eyes, the end of this episode had it.

This is one of my favorite episodes that aired on television. The transitions from past to present and back again are well done, when they could have easily made things confusing. If only we'd get a chance to see how Mal and Zoe came to meet and how Wash and Zoe wind up together.

Jayne-ism of the episode:
Marco: "Do we look reasonable to you?"
Mal: "Well, looks can be deceiving."
Jayne: "Not as deceiving as a low down, dirty, deceiver."
Mal: "Well said. Wasn't that well said, Zoe?"
Zoe: "Had a kind of poetry to it, sir."

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I agree with everyone that this is a great episode. It is also one of the reasons that I always reject the notion that not airing the pilot first had anything to do with the demise of the show. Finding out how Simon and River ended up on the boat is no more necessary than finding out how Wash, Kaylee, and Jayne got there. Stories don't always have to be told in a linear fashion, and sometimes they are better if they aren't.

July 21 2006 at 4:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
GC in CA

This is the episode that made me truly love this show. I'd been watching for weeks and hoping that I'd grow to like it while thinking, "Eh, it's not as good as 'Buffy'," when all at once it grabbed me. It proved to me that Joss Whedon, Tim Minear, and all of the other writers had been laying the groundwork in the previous episodes and had so established these characters that their quirks and conflicts came to the fore in a way that made for great storytelling.

July 21 2006 at 4:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This was one of the few episodes that aired on TV that I somehow managed not to see. When I finally saw it on DVD years later I was floored at how great it was.

I think I must've sat in my room for a few minutes to acknowledge that I just saw a really great episode and then I watched it again. I love moments like that when I watch something...

July 21 2006 at 4:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Akbar Fazil

I think it was just pretty well accepted that Mal and Zoe just met in the militia and became inseparable.

As for Zoe and Wash, I don't think seeing exactly how they hooked up would have been worth it. Leave that as a mystery. Besides, take her line of "there is just something about it him" Thats true love right there. When you find the person you are meant to be with there is something you feel that is undescribable that you cant put your finger on. Common logic makes you realize that it is true love for someone who completes you.

July 21 2006 at 1:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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