TV

Let’s Talk Firefly

Mal speaking Chinese.

River and Jayne growling at each other.

A new episode of Firefly? I wish. But nope, it’s just our dear actors showing that after 7 years, they, just like us, still haven’t gotten over how great the show was.

I didn’t even start watching Castle because I was curious about whatever happened to Nathan Fillion after Firefly. After all, I didn’t watch Firefly until after I started watching Castle. And Chuck, too. I wasn’t even planning on ever watching Firefly since I’m not a big fan of the wild west (although I am a fan of sci-fi) but my obsession with Chuck led me to watching ComiCon panels on YouTube and inevitably witnessing the mania for Adam Baldwin, simply because he was, once upon a time, the man they called Jayne.

So there. I have now watched each episode of Firefly at least three times, and the movie Serenity at least four times. There is just something about it. And I can learn all the words in the ‘verse and still not be able to explain it. All I know is that I’m not the only one who feels this way. And you only need to look at any website dedicated to Firefly, and you’ll know, that all of its fans are obsessive like this. And, just like in the introduction of this entry, I guess the actors are, too.

In both shows, Castle and Chuck, Nathan Fillion and Adam Baldwin have been making subtle references to Firefly. They’re so much fun to spot and it’s just so cute to know that they’re still thinking of the show-that-was.

In Season 2 (Episode 6) of Castle, Nathan donned his Captain Mal costume for “Halloween”. In Season 1 of Chuck (Episode 11), Adam’s character John Casey, referred to his car as “shiny”. And I guess there have been other references that I might’ve missed, but I definitely didn’t miss the ones that were in their episodes in this week.

Both in Castle and in Chuck, both last Monday night, both Nathan and Adam and (bonus!) Summer Glau (who played River in Firefly) just reminded me so much of the fun that Firefly was.

In Chuck, Summer Glau guest-stars as one of the Gretas–the CIA agent that changes every week at the Buy More. Although Greta’s played by different actors, he/she doesn’t really have much to do and hardly ever interacts with the main characters. But this week, she does, and with John Casey to boot. Because she’s such a hottie, the non-CIA agents of the Buy More (Lester and Jeff) do some investigating into her life. So as not to blow her cover, Casey tells them that she’s a petty thief stealing head massagers from the Buy More. Afterwards, he and Greta have a conversation wherein she tells him that she’s disappointed in him because he used to be this great agent, and was now just a glorified babysitter of salespeople in retail. But what made that scene was how she growled, indicating frustration, just like how Casey growls, and he growls at her right back. It’s shallow and it’s not even really a Firefly reference, but you know, River did a lot of times mock the crew of Serenity, most especially Jayne (since he’s the easiest to mock). And growling at John Casey, well, isn’t that a way of mocking him as well?

In Castle, the story’s about UFOs and government conspiracies, so it’s really more a shoutout to The X-Files, especially given the Castle-Beckett dynamic, which can be paralleled with Mulder and Scully. But there was still Firefly magic towards the end where Castle (played by Nathan Fillion) ran into some Chinese factory workers and had to speak to them in Chinese so that they’d leave the room. Wondering how he learned to speak Chinese, Beckett asks him, “Semester abroad?” And he replies, “No, a TV show I used to love.”

And didn’t we all used to love that TV show? 🙂

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10 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Firefly”

  1. I wonder how many people got that reference to “a show I used to love”? I laughed out loud, and my wife looked at me like I was crazy.

    Browncoats will always love that show.

  2. I spotted another subtle reference to Firefly in Chuck 3.05, where Casey is eating an apple by cutting slices from it with a knife and popping them into his mouth, much like Mal and Zoe do in the Firefly episode “War Games.” 🙂 I can’t remember if Jayne eats them the same way or not. But that’s gotta be a Firefly callback, right?!

  3. I spotted a firefly reference in Chuck earlier this year. Casey was pretending to be hunting to check out a house where they thought someone was being held hostage and he was wearing the hat he wore when they went to the world where the mudders worshipped Jayne.

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