Friday, September 30, 2005

My Big Damn Heroes

Back in 2002, a show came on the air that captured my interest and imagination as soon as I started watching it. Though it only ran for a short period of time before being cancelled, Firefly became and remains one of my favourite television shows of all time. The 'Verse of Whedon's creation was refreshing, intelligently thought out, and believable in its humanity; in short, everything that Star Wars and Star Trek weren't. Whedon showed viewers a future where people have expanded into the stars and found nothing besides themselves staring back. Without aliens, Whedon didn't have that failsafe that Roddenberry and similarly-minded science fiction auteurs relied on. His characters had to be people, and be believable in that role. This engaged me more than any other science fiction. As a space western, it was a success because the two halves fitted so well together. It avoided the one thing that always bothered me about other science fiction: sound effects in space. The more I watched, the more I fell in love.

So of course, I was crushed when it was cancelled. Like many other fans of the series, I resented Twentieth Century Fox for its marketing blunder and lack of confidence. As we turned our anger outwards, we found that we weren't alone, that thousands of others felt the same way we did. Many of us fought a guerilla marketing campaign, spearheaded by such fan groups as Gradually, we realized that as consumers, we still had influence. We bought the series DVDs and lent them out, and as we did this, something great happened. The people behind the show responded. They talked with us, shared our frustrations, and helped us fight. The cancelling of Firefly was in many ways a blessing, because it brought together thousands of us Browncoats in line behind our Big Damn Heroes. They went to cons halfway around the globe, where Firefly never aired, and found out DVDs were selling out; they found more of us. After much effort, we got finally got victory. We finally got more Firefly. We finally got our Big Damn Movie. Joss, like us, never gave up, and tonight we get our reward.

I'm seeing the movie tonight as soon as my shift at work is done, and I'm so excited I can barely sit still. Every time I see a trailer, I squeal uncontrollably. Tonight is a personal victory for me and Browncoats alike, evidence that there is room in Hollywood and multiplexes for us. Tonight, as we head to the cinemas for our victory lap, we can't help but think one thing:

We've done the impossible, and that makes us mighty.

No comments: