The Silver Lining… Alternate Titles For Firefly That Could Have Saved It (Maybe… Probably Not)

Does this title scream western sci-fi space romp or what?

Joss Whedon is about to hit the proverbial big-time very soon.  Fans that know him already love him and probably consider him “big-time”, but I’m talking about the next level shit here.

Much like how Jon Favreau was merely that guy who was in that cool indie Rat Pack-era inspired 90’s film (that he wrote) alongside Vince VaughnFavreau was not a name the masses knew until a little flick called Iron Man.

With The Avengers, the masses will now know Whedon.  And if they don’t, they should.

That having been said:

What the fuck was he thinking when he named his best television show to date Firefly?

If you don’t know the show, you should be ashamed of yourself.  It’s the one-season wonder that was so beloved, it got a theatrical follow-up, Serenity… which is also a sucky name.  Firefly is the class of ship and Serenity is its name.

This is tantamount to calling a Star Wars TV show, Corellian Freighter, and the movie based on it, Millenium Falcon.  (Okay, the movie title kind of works.)

If Firefly had a different show title, would it have lasted?  All I can say is it would have stood out more.  (When I originally heard of the show, I heard “from the creator of Buffy, comes Firefly“… needless to say, I didn’t watch it in its original run.)

Here are my alternate suggestions for Firefly/Serenity:

  • “Mal” – could have evoked Darth Maul, or malice… it’s better than using the lead character’s full name, “Mal Reynolds” (which is still better than John Carter), but it does not capture all the characters
  • “Browncoats” – this is what the rebels of the Alliance were called… we’re getting somewhere, but this still only covers two players
  • “OutRiders” – a play on the word that means forerunner or harbinger… evokes outsider and rider of horses/ships, perhaps… also sounds like it could be a show on Bravo
  • “Spacecoach”since this show is like Stagecoach In Space horrible idea
  • “The Last Frontier” – frontier = boring to me
  • Space Western” – it worked for That 70’s Show

So why did Whedon go with Firefly?

Whedon wanted to give the show a name that indicated movement and power, and felt that “Firefly” had both.  This powerful word’s relatively insignificant meaning, Whedon felt, added to its allure.  He eventually wound up creating the ship in the image of a firefly. (via)

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