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119 of 135 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A huge improvement over the previous Serenity series
A few years ago fans of FIREFLY/SERENITY were given a rather lack luster series called THOSE WE LEFT BEHIND. There isn't a great deal of narrative squeeze space right now in the Serenity universe. The reason is that Joss Whedon and his stars still hope to make another movie. Whether it would be a direct to DVD (which is more likely) or a a theater release is an open...
Published on October 27, 2008 by Robert Moore

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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not worth it if...
If you already have the first Better Days Collection.
This one also has the Wash Out story and two short ones one of which was available to read for free online
Simple repackaged release. Good thing I saw it at a local store before ordering.
Published on October 21, 2011 by cbfundamental


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119 of 135 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A huge improvement over the previous Serenity series, October 27, 2008
A few years ago fans of FIREFLY/SERENITY were given a rather lack luster series called THOSE WE LEFT BEHIND. There isn't a great deal of narrative squeeze space right now in the Serenity universe. The reason is that Joss Whedon and his stars still hope to make another movie. Whether it would be a direct to DVD (which is more likely) or a a theater release is an open question.

There there have been rumors from time to time that Universal, given the impressive and steady sales of both FIREFLY and SERENITY on DVD, was at least interested in considering a DVD film at some point, but so far nothing has materialized. But as long as there is a chance of a continuance of the story of Mal, Zoe, River, Simon, Jayne, and the rest of the crew of Serenity, Joss Whedon is not going to reveal the remaining major secrets about his characters. In commentaries on the film SERENITY, Whedon in particular mentioned Inara's story as the great unexplored mystery. The first film cleared up most of River's untold story, which leaves Inara's. And, of course, Shepherd Book, who will not be part of a future movie because of his death. His backstory will be covered in the next Serenity comic series, focusing exclusively on him and the story that he had been unwilling to tell in either the TV series of the film. It is at least tentatively titled A SHEPHERD'S TALE. But like THOSE LEFT BEHIND and BETTER DAYS, it will be another prequel, this one a prequel to FIREFLY as well. After that, I doubt if we wee much more in the way of Serenity comics, since Whedon clearly doesn't want to pick up at the end of the movie SERENITY. If Universal doesn't move forward with a film (they have exclusive rights to the franchise until the middle of the next decade and even then for films only -- TV rights revert to 20th Century Fox at that time), Joss Whedon might be tempted to tell the rest of the story, presumably is a comic closer in length to ANGEL: AFTER THE FALL, rather than the two short Serenity comics that we have seen so far.

As I stated above, this three-episode sequence is a considerable improvement over the earlier THOSE LEFT BEHIND. There are some adventures that truly are similar to those in the TV series or film. Though not as satisfying as another film or TV series, it adds to the canonical body of adventures our heroes have embarked on. Because of its odd placement in the period of time after the TV series but before the film, not much can really happen of great import. You know no one is going to die (Joss Whedon basically invented the body count as we currently recognize it on TV) because of the later film. And River, who emerged as the ultimate lethal weapon in the film, is still self-contained and only minimally interactive with the outside world (though we the most memorable graphic in the series is a full page portrait of River having all her fondest desires realized). But given that, Whedon's team did a great job of creating a fun and funny and interesting story.

In my review of THOSE LEFT BEHIND, I did not recommend that fans of the TV series and movie give it a read. I definitely recommend this. This succeeds in all the ways that the earlier book failed.
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A nice sense of nostalgia, December 14, 2008
You know how it feels like when you break up with someone and a few months later you come across this person somewhere? Feels a little awkward? Well one can experience a similar feeling with this book. There was definately an "It's over" moment from fox when this show was abruptly ended and it's wonderful magic never caught on again as much as one would like. The movie couldn't bring what I loved about the show back and the same goes for this somic but for different reasons.
This book is not set after the movie, the setting would be before it, yet not a prelude like the other. This is like an episode which never aired in comic book form. So we know that whatever happens here won't have any repercussions on a grander story in the making. The good thing about this is that you get the good old feeling of the team from the TV series again. Wash is alive and kicking and Book is with them on the ship, so is Inara. It reminds you of how great the show was, but it only lasts 3 issues with nthing telling you that there is hope for more Firefly goodness later.
But, these three issues seen independently of anything else, are fantastic and if you liked the show, then you'll love these. They're written by Joss so every character sounds like they should. What I really love is how it reffers to previous episodes. For example, you'll see how far and wide the Hero of Campton's tale has been spread :) Art wise, it is the same artist as the previous comic and he makes most of the characters look very similar to the show, with the exception of Wash. Wash looks like a regular white guy. But Mal and the rest look perfect.

If you are a fan of nostalgia, then this is definately the book for you.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice continuation of the 'verse, November 5, 2011
This review is from: Serenity Volume 2: Better Days and Other Stories 2nd Edition (Hardcover)
Before I start, I must say that I am a Browncoat. Not a "rabid Browncoat", but the regular one that happens to own 3 graphic novels, a collector set of "Serenity", a t-shirt that labels me as "browncoat", and some yet-to-be-framed Red Sun Travel posters...Okay, so maybe I'm a tiny bit rabid, but believe me when I say, I've seen far worse cases.
For this Graphic Novel I'm going all out and giving it a 5 star. Why?: Because it's really good, not as good as "Those Left Behind", but still a really good continuation of what it started. Of course, I'm also a huge hard cover/1st edition junkie, so the fact it's a combo of multiple stories in the Firefly 'verse and in a hard cover version just tickles my fancy. Also, If you're a fan of the actors that stared in the original show, and have an urge to read a take on what they think/thought of what happened (tv/movie) and what is happening (Graphic Novel) these are a way to partake in some of that knowledge. "Better Days and Other Stories" has a letter from Adam Baldwin (aka: Jayne) that talks fondly of yester-year and being the hero of Jaynestown and "not a girl's name".
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not worth it if..., October 21, 2011
This review is from: Serenity Volume 2: Better Days and Other Stories 2nd Edition (Hardcover)
If you already have the first Better Days Collection.
This one also has the Wash Out story and two short ones one of which was available to read for free online
Simple repackaged release. Good thing I saw it at a local store before ordering.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, not wow. Just think of it as a missing episode., November 22, 2009
In mourning for the just canceled Joss Whedon series, Dollhouse, I decided to pick up a copy of this graphic novel (well perhaps graphic novella as it isn't that long) extending Whedon's Firefly universe just a little more. This is an easy and fast read, and probably won't take you longer to consume than it would to watch one of the original TV episodes. (If you aren't familiar with Firefly or the movie Serenity, don't bother getting this; Better Days spends almost no time on "what has gone before." You don't need to read any of the other Firefly graphic novels, though.)

Is the story awesomely good? No. Is it enjoyable? Absolutely. If you're a Firefly fan, you'll enjoy the character's witty repartee, the plot twists (okay they aren't TOO twisty, since this happens somewhere in the timeline of Season 1), and the teeny insights into the characters' motivations. If it had been filmed as a TV episode, it probably wouldn't be your (or at least my) favorite episode. But I'm glad I spent the money on Better Days, particularly since it isn't that much money; it'd make a dandy stocking stuffer for any Firefly fan.

If you're looking for a seriously good Firefly wallow, however, I'd recommend you buy Firefly: The Official Companion first. It costs a little more, but reading the original scripts is a real hoot.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid, but Not Great Entertainment, July 11, 2009
This is the second comic based on Joss Whedon's wickedly good but short-lived TV series Firefly. The first bridged the gap between the series and the feature film that followed, while this one is more a stand-alone adventure -- kind of like an episode from the series that was never made. On the plus side, it's always nice to revisit beloved characters and spend some bonus time in their company. The gang is all present and correct, with all the banter you'd expect. However, there's nothing really "extra" here -- you're not going to get a new insight into any of the characters. The story is pretty choppy, and concerns the Firefly gang stealing a piece of advanced tech and the complications that ensue when they try and sell it on. The plot feels kind of recycled from other sources, and some of the transitions are downright confusing. At a few points, I was wondering if there had been some kind of production error that had flipped panels between spreads or something. The art and panelling is otherwise very solid, with faithful attention paid to keeping the Firefly crew looking exactly like the cast, with some really nice color work that's bold without calling attention to itself. It's a quick read (maybe 20-30 minutes depending on how much you want to savor it as you go), and if you're in need of a Firefly fix, it'll certainly do -- just keep your expectations in check.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nice production values, weak story...., June 5, 2009
While this comic looks great I found the three part story very superficial and the ending disappointing nonsense. I kept looking for missing pages (the comic's pages are unnumbered) that would fill in the story, which, after all, is the main attraction of Serenity/Firefly.

I can't really explain my disappointment with the ending without giving it "away", but I really can't recommend you purchase this unless you are just completing your Serenity collection. Suffice it to say - weak story, negligible character development, and low continuity.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Really "Better" Days . . ., July 5, 2009
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I was a little disappointed by this book. The art is beautiful, but the story itself is nothing special. It's neat to see inside each of the characters' heads the way you do, but if this were an episode of the show, it'd be a forgettable one. And since this collects four issues of the comic, I was a little surprised that had this been an episode of the show, it would have only been a single episode. It's very short and not a lot happens in it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Weaker than the TV serial and the movie, but still a pleasure., February 17, 2009
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All is in the title. The drawings are good and very close from the TV serial. But the story isn't breath taking. The first comic book (Those left behind) was far more interesting, but it was giving information about the main plot, which isn't the case here.

So overall, this story is a deception. But at the same time, it's a real pleasure to find back all the characters and this universe. So it's still a good way to wait for an hypothetic new movie/season.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming and Classic Stories, April 20, 2012
This review is from: Serenity Volume 2: Better Days and Other Stories 2nd Edition (Hardcover)
Such a great follow up to Serenity:volume 1.
Charming stories that are so vivid and detailed you long to see them as episodes of Firefly. Exceptional writing as always comes from Joss and team.
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Serenity Volume 2: Better Days and Other Stories 2nd Edition
Serenity Volume 2: Better Days and Other Stories 2nd Edition by Joss Whedon (Hardcover - August 30, 2011)
$19.99 $11.99
In stock on December 25, 2014
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