raebird ([personal profile] raebird) wrote2005-12-03 04:45 pm
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A Firefly/Serenity wishlist-like thing.

An anonymous commenter over at [livejournal.com profile] serenity_santa asked if [livejournal.com profile] sunbrae and I would post wish lists so that people might do something for us in appreciation of our running the community. Which, hey, is nice, but I'm totally not doing this to receive gifts. I'm doing this because I have a nearly-obsessive love of giving gifts and of organizing, so coordinating a bunch other people giving gifts to each other is some amazing fannish crack to me, yum.

But then I start thinking, what do I want in the Fireflyverse? And it occurs to me that I'm filled with wants. I want more of this world. When I first watched the DVDs, nearly two years ago, I wanted more of this world, but at the time I sought it out by burrowing deeper into the DVDs, rewatching, recruiting new fans, screencapping the episodes, making icons, not thinking at all outside the span of those thirteen episodes if I could avoid it. The whole time I knew Serenity was in the works, I kind of ignored it. And then the reality of Serenity changed it all. I want more of this world, and I want more than is already on those four discs on constant rotation through my DVD player.

So I'm going to tell you about some of the things I want to see from that world, most of which have formed themselves into something resembling fic prompts. I don't have any serious expectation that people are going to write these for me, but if they do inspire something, I'd love to see it. Most of my ideas are quite spoilery for Serenity. And they are as follows:

Earth That Was
"Earth-That-Was could no longer sustain our numbers, we were so many." That's the opening line of Serenity, of course, and it's an intriguing one, especially since it's not necessarily the same as the Firefly expression of the same historical events ("Earth got used up."). Is that just the difference between dream-memory Osiris schoolteacher- and frontier vernacular? Alliance-written history books that don't want to scare people with tales of natural disaster? Mal never knew any better and never much cared to?

I'm reading it as new information. Because I always figured that if Earth "got used up" that meant Earth couldn't support human life anymore and was a big oceanic mess of melted ice caps, greenhouse gases, and mega-cockroaches. But if Earth could merely "no longer sustain our numbers," then perhaps it was not yet so irreparably damaged at that point that it couldn't sustain other numbers. Fewer. And I don't really believe that all those unsustainable billions upon billions of likely-starving people could afford passage on a spaceship out of here. I don't really believe they ever bothered to build enough spaceships to transport billions upon billions of people out of here. I mean, sure, some were probably taken as slaves or indentured labor for terraforming the new planets. But the weak and starving ones, when the new planets couldn't grow food yet? Not so much.

Basically what I'm getting at here is this: Who inherited the Earth? Was it only those in dire poverty, or maybe a few eccentric rich folks who didn't want to leave the planet behind and could afford their own fancy food plantations (plus a lifetime supply of canned goods)? Small enclaves of intentional community food communes? Or did Earth become a kind of penal colony by default, where all the criminals who couldn't strongarm their way onto a transport were left to fend for themselves, alongside the severely mentally ill? Or all of the above? How did they cope, what are they doing a couple hundred years later, and how can somebody work all this into a harsh, rich, dark, plausible, plotty fic involving the crew of Serenity? Seriously, I'm dying to have a coherent set of answers to these questions. Or if you can't write it to involve the Serenity crew, how about an excerpt from a history textbook in the classrooms of Earth-That-Remained?

I want more of my crew.
I love the whole crew of Firefly and all their various dynamics. I love their bantering and bickering and humor and affection. I love Kaylee being at the heart of it, and as such I really want to see stories of the whole crew set during the series, when Kaylee was at her classic Kaylee-est. (I thought the changes in Kaylee between the series and the movie were effective for subtly telling us a lot about what had been happening emotionally among the crew in the intervening time. But seeing Kaylee so much thinner--even though Jewel Staite is gorgeous at any weight, Kaylee should be soft and round--and even expressing pessimistic thoughts, well, it wasn't a very happy development.) I love moments when they all feel like family, in every sense of that word.

Speaking of family...
Wash and Zoe. The two of them would make one beautiful baby. I want to meet that child. I'm sure there must be dozens of fics by now where Zoe was pregnant at the end of Serenity. I've sought out and read none so far, so I'd appreciate it if anybody could rec me any that are particularly well-written and in-character. Or write me a new one. It can be set soon after Serenity or years in the future, but I want to see River playing with the child, very much (or Jayne!), and I don't want it to be pure fluff. Keep the emotional gravity of the situation and the reality of their lives as thieves, even if it's very much in the background.

Also speaking of family (sort of)...
I want to see the Firefly crew with a pet. They do have a history of taking in strays, after all, so this lends itself to some sort of character reflection on Simon and River's role within the crew. I'd also be interested in seeing this tied into the half-formed idea I have that Saffron is a cat. (Not literally, but--it's a half-formed idea. I don't know how to explain it. Everything about her is just so feline. Run with it, or smile and nod.) Or, Jayne + yippy dog = comedy gold. There are many ways to approach this.

Or, to take a very different tack, I'm nursing a very new, mild obsession with Inara. I love the Mal/Inara relationship and their tension, but I'm accustomed to approaching it from a Mal POV, so this newfound Inara infatuation is helping me open up to it from a different angle. I also love her relationships, romantic or friendship, with other members of the crew, like Kaylee or Simon. And I'm so intrigued by the cut scenes in the Official Visual Companion, particularly the part where we find out that she began her Companion training at the age of twelve. Twelve! That's so young, both to be choosing a career and to be dedicating yourself to missing out on so many of the traditional rites of adolescence and reaching sexual maturity. I want to know about Inara's childhood, her parents, who decided on her career path and when and why, and what (if any) non-professional experiences with love and romance she's had before coming to Serenity. (But you'll have a hard time convincing me that she's been seriously, deeply in love before. Maybe avoided opportunities. I don't know. I'm not writing this.)

Also, she's way pretty. Icons are great. Unreadable text is great for some people, but I am not one of those people. I'm sure I'll be making a bunch of Inara icons eventually, but I have a lot on my plate right now, so it probably won't be soon.

That's all I can think of right now. And please do keep in mind that I don't expect any of this. If any of it inspires anybody, though, I'd be immensely thrilled to see any of my tiny ideas come to fruition.

[identity profile] rustydog.livejournal.com 2005-12-04 09:19 pm (UTC)(link)
That Earth That Was idea is very cool. (I like them all, actually, particularly the Inara backstory, but the Earth That Was gets me drooling intellectually.)

[identity profile] katesti.livejournal.com 2005-12-05 03:05 pm (UTC)(link)
Oooh, all these ideas make me wish I could write. Please point it out if any of these ideas get written.