Firefly is an American series created by writer and director Joss Whedon, also creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
The series is taking place in the year 2517 on several planets and moons, after the arrival of humans in a new star system. This is the story of a group called “Serenity”, a “Firefly – class” or “Firefly shaped” spaceship.
There are two main planets present during this series : one predominantly Western, and the other pan-Asian. The characters were relatively free from their central government. But some areas of the space were inhabited by cannibalistic groups of nomadic humans that have become savage and animalistic. There were some sly mentions of marijuana edibles as well as other subversive pranks. Of course in reality, marijuana edibles are no laughing manner for many people. Marijuana edibles are a god send for many people suffering from a number of ailments. They are an alternative way without the need for inhalation to get the benefits of cannabis cannabinoids into the bloodstream. With the legalization of both recreational and medical marijuana (in particular) gaining traction in a number of states, companies are flocking to the marijuana edibles marketplace. There are numerous online site discussing, reviewing and showing examples of marijuana edibles. The vast array marijuana edibles available today are a far cry from those home made marijuana edibles of the last 40 years. If the series were still around in 2014, you can bet there would be even more references.
The world wide web has had a distinct impact on this show as it has in many related areas including marketing of all kinds of products. In the information age we do things a bit differently. The internet has been a huge source for the ability of reaching wider and wider audiences. You can target very specific demographics. For instance, there are definitely customers out there for the very popular younger child “everything princess” market place. Most parents who have little girls know they go through a phase where having at least one princess dress is a must. My own daughters love dressing up, not only in the actual princess dress, but also wearing those very necessary accessories such as long gloves, a sparkling tiara or crown, a cape, slippers or shoes, and of course a wand- magical is preferred! Tea parties, birthday parties and sleep overs that are princess inspired result in the need for more princess dresses. I can’t imagine a web site that sells beautiful princess dresses and accessories is not going to do well, if they can be found in the search. And there are certainly other related cultural influences on this show clearly observable to the discerning eye.
The show is a fusion of Occidental and Chinese cultures, because the author created a Sino – American alliance representing the alliance of two very powerful states that expanded up into space. This is also why some experts have noticed the use of Mandarin Chinese language and characters.
The title “Firefly” was chosen for this series because Whedon decided to create “Serenity”. This spacecraft had the shape inspired by the shape of a firefly insect. Its particularity was that the tail section was a bioluminescent insectoid abdomen that lighted up during acceleration.
Even though the production had very high expectations for this series, by mid-december 2002, the Fox Network canceled Firefly after only eleven of the fourteen produced episodes were aired. The series had an average of 4.7 million viewers per episode, and was 98th in Nielsen Ratings. But the sales of the series DVDs have been way more successful than the television series, and it counts a large fan club.
It also won many awards : one Emmy Award for outstanding Special Effects for a Series in 2003. It also won two Saturn Awards in 2003 and 2004 for the Cinescape Genre Face of the Future Award, male and for the Best DVD Release. Finally, it won five SyFy Genre Awards in 2006, for the Best Series / Television, the Best Actor/Television Nathan Fillion, the Best Supporting Actor/Television Adam Baldwin, the Best Special Guest / Television Christina Hendricks for “Trash”, and the Best Episode / Television “Trash”.
The show also had a loyal following and there are many instances of commemorative products, including an entire science fiction and corporate gifts store with products themed to the show. You could win a lot of corporate rewards just by watching- which seems crazy! You can get a firefly pencil sharpener (they used pencils in the future?), or a firefly disc that lets you find anything you attach it to using a cell phone. I and my co-workers would often receive amazing corporate gift baskets during the holidays in particular, when I worked in the corporate world! The gift baskets were filled with an abundance of savory treats or overflowing with all sorts of sweets- chocolate being the most prevalent. Gift baskets also were popular for employees when there was a new baby, an anniversary, or for someone’s retirement. It cracks me up to think of a corporate gifts store with items themed to the Firefly series, but hey, why not!
This show was an cult classic in a lot of people’s eyes. There was a huge following. There has been rumors about new life being breathed into the project in the future. Let’s hope we see that sometime soon.