- Paperback: 160 pages
- Publisher: Titan Books; 1 edition (May 25, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1848565062
- ISBN-13: 978-1848565067
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.5 x 10.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 32 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #344,597 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Firefly: Still Flying, A Celebration of Joss Whedon’s Acclaimed TV Series 1st Edition
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"If you've ever wanted to crawl inside the world of Firefly, both the universe that the characters live in and the behind-the-scenes world of making the show, then Firefly: Still Flying is a must-read." --i09.com
"The presentation is beautiful" --TV Verdict
"It's the best companion book for any TV series that I have seen in a long time." --SF Universe
About the Author
Joss Whedon is the creator and guiding light behind Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly and Dollhouse. He also wrote and directed the movie Serenity.
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Still Flying is such a collection for Firefly fans. It's more like a "high school yearbook" than it is a set of short stories (there are a few, and they're good). Each cast member shares stories from the TV show, from how they got the part to their appreciation of the Browncoats fans to tales from the set. It's not just the actors; there's also input from behind the scenes people such as the stunt guy. Lots of photos of memorabilia, like the head of Jayne's statue or the Lassiter gun (which, I learned, was named after the Lassiter guy who started Pixar, apparently a friend of Joss' -- see, good trivia too).
If you're a Firefly fan who is enthusiastic enough to identify the episodes by name (which I confess I am), you will enjoy this book. It's good bathroom reading, and I mean that in the nicest way; it's unlikely you'll want to read everything in one fell swoop. And like the memory box in your attic, sometimes it's more fun to contemplate and savor one item at a time.
You don't NEED this book. But I think you'll like it.
The parts I liked about the book are the same things I liked about the first two books from Titan--great photographs of characters, sets, and props; intriguing behind-the-scenes interviews (this time with a costume designer and a double, among others); and some great collections of quotes from the actors, harvested from different interviews and appearances at conferences. That last is part of my "not so great" angle, though. Parts of this felt more like aggregation than original work.
As for the original work--the four new stories! First, I wouldn't count Edlund's "Fun with Dick and Jayne" as an "original story" -- it's two comic panes illustrating Jayne in childhood (with some dialogue), and that's it. So okay: Three new stories? My favorite was the first, by Jayne Espenson, set before the movie Serenity, throwing Kayli and Wash into an action adventure those two characters rarely got to experience on the show. Another, by Brett Matthews, shows River's point of view--also pre-"Serenity"--in which she has a premonition of what is to come, which I also enjoyed. The last, by Jose Molina, struck me as a particularly depressing spoiler alert for anything else ever to happen to these characters... unless it was just an alternative future, in which case I hope someone corrects me.
I would love to see Whedon okay (and perhaps edit, or at least approve) "Firefly" novels, like the popular novel series about "Star Wars" characters and the "Star Trek" series. I want to see these stories and characters continue--in adventures and romance and snappy dialogue--rather than simply dwelling on what they once were. "Still Flying" focuses, for me, a little too much on the latter.
The interviews with cast and crew are mainly collected from previously published sources. It's great to have them all in one place, but no new material. Still, the interviews are insightful and the case is refreshingly open.
Some of the background on the story development and prop designs really add depth. We only saw some of the items a handful of times so seeing them again was great. I particularly liked the section on the ships. A lot of thought went into the design of the Alliance ship, which only appeared briefly in Safe.
The short stories are probably the reason to buy this book. Two of them are great. "What Holds Us Down" by Jane Epenson and "Take the Sky" by Jose Molina really add character depth. Molina's story shows the fate of Mal and the rest of the crew. It's not a happy ending, but it fits the tone of the series. "Crystal" has some nice development for River, but it takes place too much within the shadow of the movie "Serenity" (I won't explain what that means for fear of revealing spoilers, but the entire story foreshadows the movie). "Fun with Dick and Jayne" is a short cartoon about Jayne as a kid. Cute, but nothing special.
If you are a diehard fan and want the full TV scripts as well, I recommend getting Firefly: A Celebration (Anniversary Edition), which contains everything, including "Firefly: Still Flying". I prefer this book because it is cheaper and contains the most interesting parts.