Thursday, March 24, 2011
Science Fiction has been a big part of our culture for a long time. It's more than entertainment. It has opened our eyes to the impossible, and made us dream of the stars. Whether we fantasized as kids about a real light saber, or we watched in awe as a real space ship left this planet, we have always watched with a "What if?" in our minds. What if there are other people out there? What if you could travel across the galaxy in the blink of an eye? What if the impossible was not so impossible?
Then a little show called Firefly came along, and asked a different "What if?" question. What if, even after leaving this planet, everything was just the same? Well, we got some of the answers to that, and they fascinated us, but we never fully got to explore it. Firefly was canceled faster than her captain could shoot a puppy, and it was forgotten.
Well, it was not forgotten by the fans. DVD sales went nuts, which led to a movie being made from a show that had been canceled before it even had a full season.
This is where I came in. I hadn't heard of Firefly before Serenity. And when I saw the previews for Serenity, my wife and I had a unanimous reaction: "That looks stupid." So we brushed it off as another bad attempt at science fiction (because, let's face it, there are a lot of those), until a friend of mine posted on his blog "Serenity and the Death of George Lucas." Wait, what? Oh, yeah. That stupid sci-fi movie. But he wouldn't stop talking about how great the movie was, and how important it was that I see it. So I decided I would.
But it wasn't in theaters anymore. And the DVD artwork looked pretty awful too. But I watched it anyway. Low and behold, it was freakin' awesome. To skip the long middle part (the one you all have been through too, or you will soon enough), I have bought three copies of the movie, two copies of the show, the documentary, countless books and comics, whatever I could get my hands on.
And yet that's not enough. There's no more Firefly.
Well, some of us have decided that's unacceptable. A few of us have made silly little fan films, sure (I'm one of those, yes), but one person decided to do it right. One person decided to really and truly make more Firefly. Michael Dougherty got Joss Whedon's blessing, then he got Fox's permission, and he made some more Firefly. He'll never make a dime off of it either. But he has done two huge things for us: He has given us more Firefly, and he gave all the money to charity.
Now, I have heard all of the complaints about Browncoats: Redemption. I know there's no Nathan Fillion. I know it's not made by Joss Whedon. And I know it wasn't a $40 million dollar movie. But you know what? It's a good movie! And it's Firefly! Why aren't we more excited about this? Why aren't we running around telling all of our Browncoat friends, "Hey, there's more Firefly!" Why aren't we telling Fox that we'll gladly spend money on more Firefly? You can't even claim it's a waste of money, because it goes to some of the best charities in the world. This is a win/win situation. We get more Firefly, Fox sees that we're still here, and charities get all kinds of money.
Well, the other day someone named Tim Brown had an idea. What if the SyFy channel aired Browncoats: Redemption? He posted it on FireflyFans.net, and it got some of us thinking. Would it even work? The answer turns out to be maybe. Yes, there are lots of legal issues there, but that's what SyFy pays their lawyers for. We just have to convince them that it's worth it for them.
Do we even realize what would happen if SyFy did air Redemption? There's been a lot of hype lately about Firefly airing on the Science Channel, because Firefly is back on the air. But we're talking about new Firefly being on the air. It could seriously reinvigorate the fandom. Fox would notice, too. If we can get excited about an independent film, how excited would we be if Joss and Co. came back to make more Firefly? And how many people would this introduce to the 'verse? How many people would go out and donate to Redemption, then buy Firefly and Serenity?
We know there's a lot of "if" coming from this plan. But isn't that the point? Isn't that why we love science fiction in the first place?
What if it works? I intend to find out.
We've set up a facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/BrowncoatsonSyFy, and we're asking for people's support. (Facebook pages are the new petitions, basically). You can also e-mail SyFy at email@example.com. Compared to the impossible things we've done before, this should be a walk in the park.