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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

enik1138
-at-popapostle-dot-com
"Downtime"
Web comic

Written by Zack Whedon
Art by Chris Samnee

 

Serenity spends some downtime snowed-in after a planetary rendezvous.

 

Read the full web comic at USA Today

 

Notes from the Firefly/Serenity Chronology

 

I based the placement of this story from the Firefly/Serenity timeline created by Edgar Governo on his site The History of Things That Never Were.

 

Didja Know?

 

Writer Zack Whedon is the brother of series creator Joss Whedon.

 

Didja Notice?

 

On page 1 of the story, Wash admonishes Zoe, as regards her seeming to side with Mal, "Honey, remember the conversation we had about taking sides?" This may be a reference to Wash's feelings that she was too close to her old army buddy, Mal, in "War Stories".

 

On page 1, it's possible Mal, Zoe, and Wash are meant to be standing in front of the door to Kaylee's quarters; notice that panels 5 and 7 have some weird dots sprinkled along the corridor wall, which may be representative of the Christmas lights Kaylee is seen to have on the door to her quarters as seen in episodes of the TV series.

 

It's unusual that on pages 2-3, Jayne is wearing a plain t-shirt instead of one of his customary printed tees.

 

It's somewhat subtle, but notice that the heads of Shepherd Book and Kaylee are seen through the windows of the infirmary as Simon examines Jayne's "nethers".

 

It looks as if the Mule may be present in the cargo bay on panel 1 of page 7. Even though the 4-wheeled bike was seemingly sacrificed in "War Stories", it will also be seen again in the cargo bay in "Trash". It appears that the crew was able to salvage the vehicle, for parts and whatnot, from Niska's space station before they left in "War Stories".

 

River's comment to Book on page 8, "It's easy for you, too," is a reference to his secret past as Alliance agent, as later revealed in The Shepherd's Tale.

 

Unanswered Questions

 

Who were the people that River killed on the planet? It seems clear they were aiming to capture her, but were they waiting specifically for her, knowing she was wanted by the Alliance? Or were they just looking for a straggler to kidnap for slavery or ransom? If they were waiting for her specifically, how did they know she was on Serenity?

 

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